A "DAY" TO REMEMBER
Paul Brogan | Portsmouth, NH United States | 07/11/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"The recent release of the first season of "The Doris Day Show" has been one of the happiest surprises, for many, of the summer. The production values for the CBS series are exquisite and the quality of the DVD and bonuses elevate it to the top of the heap.
On the heels of that success, the second season of the hit series is due to be released in October of 2005 and as good as the first season is, the second was a knockout. It quickly became one of the top ten rated series on the air and it is easy to see why.
The second season combines the best of all worlds. Doris Martin, played by Miss Day, still resides on the family farm with her dad, played by Denver Pyle and her two sons, who are among the most likeable and believable child stars of the era, never resorting to cute. The change in the new season is that Doris Martin gets a job in San Francisco, working for a big magazine, thereby allowing the series to be more expansive. It also allows the introduction of additional characters at the magazine. They include Doris Martin's boss, played by McLean Stevenson, pre-"Mash", RoseMarie who had recently stolen "The Dick VanDyke Show" from the stars of that series, and Paul Smith as Ron Harvey. Miss Day also had the opportunity to expand her wardrobe and reinforce the reasons for her being dubbed a fashion icon.
The storylines alternate between Doris Martin's new career and family matters back on the farm and sometimes the two world's meld most amusingly.
What can one say about Miss Day that hasn't been said for years. She is funny, warm, real, winning, a natural. She makes it seem so easy and her interactions with all the cast members never seems forced. You almost feel as though you might be eavesdropping on real life.
The second season continued to boast a great line-up of guest stars and cast. They included Larry Storch, making a couple of appearances as a boxer who is befriended by Miss Day, Billy DeWolfe, veteran of a couple of Day films from the early 50's as Mr. Jarvis, Edward Andrews, who had appeared in 3 films with Miss Day and became a semi-regular on the series as the magazine's publisher, Colonel Fairburn and Kaye Ballard and Bernie Kopell who in the series' third season would become regulars.
An interesting side-note for those who keep track of such things - Miss Day while growing up in Cincinatti, Ohio was a huge fan of the legendary Ginger Rogers. During the series' second season, two of Miss Rogers' ex-husbands make guest apearances - Lew Ayres and Jacques Bergerac.
Lots of great extras and bonus materials are promised including new interviews with Storch and RoseMarie, a blooper reel, outtakes, a movie trailer, promos, etc. If they are half as good as the bonus materials provided on the first season, that alone makes this DVD worth the price. However, in addition, you get more than two dozen very funny episodes of a delightful series starring a lady who can bring a sunshine smile to the gloomiest of days. Anyone who suffers from Seasonal Affective Disorder should prepare for winter early and buy this show. It is guaranteed to keep away the blues."
Don't Be Surprised By The Quality
Oliver Pennington | New York, New York United States | 08/12/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)
"When I saw the first season (I bought it here), I didn't remember how good this show looked and how well it was produced. I shouldn't have been surprised, Doris Day had been Hollywood's #1 female box office attraction in films for such a long time, CBS certainly wouldn't hold back the bucks on a star of her magnitude.
The network was so pleased to get Doris, they dealt her a "Ft. Knox hand" as Variety headlined. CBS was weary of Lucille Ball threatening to leave if she didn't get more money at the conclusion of each contract, they felt that top movie queen, Doris Day, could quell the cantankerous Miss Ball. Everybody expected fireworks between the two icons (Lucy of TV; Day of films). It didn't happen. Both ladies had the utmost respect for the other's talent and legend, even posing for the press with one another.
The Doris Day Show was of much better quality than the overblown Here's Lucy or The Lucy Show or whatever Ms. Ball was doing at the time. But, in the late 60s, during the beginning of the sexual revolution, Day was dissed because she was perceived as no longer being in the "mainstream." She did not smoke pot or commit adultery in her films, her personal life was not in scandal (save for her name being briefly mentioned in the Charles Manson mess), so a certain portion of the public didn't feel that she was "cool." They tried to make a joke out of Miss Day's clean living. They failed.
The feelings about her lingered throughout the '70s and '80s (probably the reason this series was ignored for syndication). In hindsight, perhaps that was a GOOD thing! Now, the series is being greatly appreciated by Day's core fans and the legions of new ones (world-wide) who are just discovering this talented lady.
I look forward to the second season."
Season Two, a big improvement...
jon sieruga | Redlands, CA USA | 12/29/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)
"After a bucolic, kids-&-grandpa-on-the-farm first season, Doris Day and her producer-son Terry Melcher wisely moved much of the action on Day's hit TV sitcom away from the farm and had plucky widow Doris Martin conquering San Francisco. Grandpa and the two boys still play large roles, but the main focus has been shifted to Doris' workaday life at Today's World magazine, with boss McLean Stevenson and office co-hort Rose Marie. The shows still feel a bit under-nourished (and occasionally under-populated), and the set designs are cumbersome, but Doris is cute and had great fashion sense (she looks kicky in her midis and boots). The 4-disc set includes some priceless bloopers, behind-the-scenes shooting and outtakes, promos, the trailer for Day's "The Tunnel of Love", and a preview of Season Three (where Doris Martin actually moved to San Fran instead of being a commuter). Lots of fun!"
If you're skeptical, skip Season 1 and go straight to this!
Kasey G | 07/28/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I must admit I was looking forward to seeing The Doris Day Show after only having read about it in TV history and reference books for the last 15 years or so. The most intriguing aspect of the series seemed to be its constantly changing premise. I pre-ordered Season One and I confess it took me nearly two years to work my way through it. It began as a charming, low-key sitcom typical of its era, but quickly became boring with many plots seemingly lifted from The Andy Griffith Show. Doris and her co-stars were much better than the material. The farm in Mill Valley was just not the right setting for her. Although she looked great in all her scenes, she was frequently seen in jeans and shirts, which did absolutely nothing to highlight her fabulous fashion sense or incredibly youthful figure.
Only more than halfway into the first season, in the "Fly Boy" episode (one of the better entries this season) do we get to see Doris decked out in a breathtaking black fishtail gown and realize how stifling the farm setting is to her as a character and an actress. The producers may have realized it too, because it seems from this point forward, the later episodes of the first season tend to have perkier plots and execution.
The character of Leroy B. Simpson becomes very tiresome in Season One. Although James Hampton is a fine actor, the character is too much of a Gilligan-type bumbler to stomach in large doses. There was only room on CBS for one comedic farmhand, and sorry Leroy, but that award went to Green Acres' Eb Dawson.
And so, after a dreary first season with an overdose of bucolic flavor, The Doris Day Show amazingly takes an instant upward turn as soon as our leading lady walks through the doors of Today's World magazine. She accepts a position as secretary to the managing editor, played by McLean Stevenson. Add to this a feisty co-worker played by none other than former Dick Van Dyke Show star Rose Marie, well-written, fast-paced stories and you've got a season that more than makes up for the lackluster episodes we endured throughout Season One.
Doris exudes great chemistry with her new co-stars. Rose Marie adds the much-needed contrast to Doris and comic edge that was missing the first season with Naomi Stevens as the sweet-tempered Juanita. Their teaming provides some of the best installments this season, as seen in "The Gas Station". This episode also brings back James Hampton as Leroy, who is much more appealing in his guest shots than he was a series regular, as the writers seem to have given him slightly more intellect.
The balance between Doris' home life on the farm and professional life at Today's World is executed perfectly, with just enough time devoted to the characters of Buck, Billy and Toby as to keep them involved in the storylines without becoming too boring.
The character of Doris Martin also sports an amazingly hip look this season, most notably in the use of a long blonde fall which instantly dates the show but makes its leading lady look at least 10 years younger. Beginning with the fashion show episode "Doris the Model", the show takes every advantage to show off Miss Day's wholesome beauty in the best possible light.
Had I known the series was going to improve so drastically this second year, I may have decided to skip the first season altogether and go straight to this. (Being a completist, however, that was out of the question). On its best days, The Doris Day Show was as good as, or perhaps better than That Girl.
If you tested the waters with Season One and found it too slow-moving for your taste, take my word for it--you won't be disappointed with this set because the series does a complete about-face.