Head back to Hooterville with the complete first season of this TV favorite! Oliver (Eddie Albert), Lisa (Eva Gabor), Arnold the Pig and a hilarious assortment of oddballs and bumpkins are back and ready to deliver a bumpe... more »r crop of laughs!« less
R. Weisenbacher | Eastport, NY United States | 01/26/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Well... I've been waiting for this First Season DVD set ever since I ordered the Columbia House video releases of Green Acres (late 1999-2001). Columbia House chose to release the "best" of Green Acres in no particular order, which was disconcerting to a fan. BUT, this new DVD set is released in broadcast order! It's great to see the development of the characters and it's quite satisfying to see that by the 14th episode ("What Happened in Scranton") all the characters have found their niche.Some of the episodes have a few film scratches, but they are really minor. The sound is brilliant (no scratches there!) and the color VERY vibrant! I remember watching Green Acres re-runs as a kid, and didn't realize that the hay shoveled by Eddie Albert in the beginning credits was a green color.Another reviewer mentioned the chemistry between Eddie Albert and Eva Gabor and I must also mention it. Interestingly, upon seeing the two actors names, one would think that Albert and Gabor would have nothing in common and be a disaster, but... something "clicks" between them just right. As the episodes move along, one can see that Eddie and Eva clearly TOTALLY ENJOYED each other and played off each other wonderfully. In fact, watch closely at the conclusion of one of the episodes (I kick myself for not remembering which one), where Eddie and Eva are in bed and Eddie goes to turn off the light (and theoretically conclude the episode). Eva leans over and TICKLES Eddie and he knocks the lamp off the table and he and Eva both laugh in an "out of character" way, all while the scene fades out and the end credits role. You can just see that they had FUN while making these episodes.The surreal comedy starts to "creep in" to these first season episodes, although it wouldn't be fully explored until later seasons. By "surreal" I mean where the characters "poke fun" at their own show or others similar. One episode starts with Eb milking Eleanor the cow while humming the theme song to the show! Then at the conclusion he "sings" in Eva's voice, "Dahling, I love you but give me Park Avenue!" It's in the later seasons that things like the names of the director and producers appear in the opening credits on Eddie's towel (as he exits the shower), or appear in the darkness in Eddie and Eva's bedroom where she asks him who the names are, etc.So, watch these episodes... enjoy them. And notice that they are really sophisticated "pokes" at society as we know it. Finally... these episodes (well, the ones halfway through the first season and onward) are REALLY FUNNY! Don't be ashamed to LAUGH OUT LOUD!Let's hope MGM releases all the other five seasons!"
Review of both the shows and the DVD
Yarby | Medina, OH United States | 01/19/2004
(3 out of 5 stars)
"First, I must say I am biased, as I have always considered "Green Acres" to be one of the most underrated sitcoms of all time. The surreal sequences make it unlike any other "rural" show, and it is funny yet today.But, alas....the transfers on these DVD's leave something to be desired. The primary fault is during the opening sequence....the classic theme song. The opening sequence is spattered with scratches and dirt. It also appears they used the same source for the opening for all of the shows, as the dirt and scratches are amazingly alike on every episode. Given the classic status of this opening sequence, I am surprised they didn't put more effort into making it spotless.I am not through every episode yet, but the majority of the episodes have average at best transfers....not as dirty as the opening, but not spotless either.Of course, given that this is the one and only time these episodes will probably ever appear on DVD...snatch them up if you want them. Just be forwarned....it's not perfect."
Vorthog | Ontario, Canada | 12/07/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Although I grew up on this show I think this is probably the first time I have seen the episodes in proper order, and doing so I found them even more enjoyable than ever.
I was surprised to find that during the first 22 episodes the story actually develops in something of a logical progression, and while each episode is a self-contained story, the ridiculousness just continues to build from week to week as certain developments in one story are then further expanded upon in subsequent episodes.
The cast is fabulous and I especially love the cute hired hand Eb and shameless con man Mr. Haney. And although I recalled Eva Gabor as something of an airhead, viewing this show again as an adult I realize just how talented of a comedienne she truly was.
One of the things I really love about the show is the warm and loving relationship shown between main characters Oliver and Lisa. No matter how much at odds they may be during an episode, in the end it is their love for each other that makes everything alright and keeps them together in the face of every outlandish adversity that "Hootsersville" can throw at them.
And after having been bombarded with it throughout the subsequent decades of comedy, it now seems almost unbelievable that a show could be as funny as this and not have had to resort to a single joke about sex for the year's entire 32 episodes. I doubt that today's so-called comedy writers could manage that feat for more than about 2 minutes!
The first 22 episodes detailing the couple's first 6 months on the farm are very, very solid and gut-bustingly funny. Definitely classic comedy! I think that they must have all been plotted out before the series went into production and show a wonderful cohesion. Beyond that point, the show's scripts seem to lose a bit of their direction and become more of a hit or miss kind of affair for the season's remaining 10 episodes.
But Green Acres would go on into even zanier territory, and I hope we will eventually see all episodes on DVD. (I remember one in particular where Eb dreams of having a conversation with the Jolly Green Giant that is one of the most hilarious things I have ever seen on TV!)
As for the DVD itself, for some reason episodes 1 & 2 and 22 & 23 seem to be much more dirty and scratched than the rest and should have been cleaned up first. Also, as another reviewer mentioned, the same opening credits which are also dirty and grainy have been used by MGM for every episode. Quit cutting corners like this MGM!! But other than this the remaining episodes all look quite good. I did get a bit sick of seeing that MGM lion roaring so loudly before every single episode though. How about just once at the beginning of the disc, MGM?
It was somewhat of a challenge trying to get the double-sided discs out of the package the first time without damaging them since the clips in the case are especially stubborn and don't release easily. Be careful!! But when you pop them back in don't push them as far in and they will come out easily after that.
So overall I would have to say that I'm overjoyed to have been reunited with an old favourite of mine. I give the show itself 5 stars, but the DVD only 3 stars due to the problems mentioned above.
I eagerly await further seasons on DVD, and also want to see season boxed sets of "The Beverly Hillbillies" and Green Acres' sister show "Petticoat Junction". For me they represent a kind of golden age of TV, when comedy didn't need to resort to being crude or offensive to be funny. Viewed from our jaded world of today, they seem to hold a kind of almost childlike innocence that I have to say I truly miss."
More Than I Expected
Vorthog | 02/04/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)
"I won't attempt to describe the content of the Green Acres TV series except to say it is like a very strange comic book filled with parodies and satire.I first heard about this DVD in October and I counted down the days until it was available from Amazon. I was expecting a product only slightly better than VHS quality, but I was pleasantly surprized. The video and audio qualities are quite good.This comes as 2 disks in a moderately deluxe case. There are indeed 32 episodes including the pilot episode. I am sure I have never seen the pilot and despite what it says on the packaging, I have doubts it was ever broadcast. I know I wouldn't have bought the series based on it. However by Episode 3, the familar format is established. In order to fit all the content on just 2 disks, the disks are double-sided, double-layered and this might be the cause of some problems with some DVD players. As other reviewers have mentioned, the selection menu requires you to select and view each episode separately. On my cheap DVD player I could only select the first episode on each side. However, there was no problem selecting all the content when I viewed the disks on my computer DVD drive. I think this DVD set is bargain when compared with the pricing of newer TV series DVDs and I would like to see more of this content available."
"Green Acres Is The Place To Be ....."
David Von Pein | Mooresville, Indiana; USA | 01/24/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"".....dah-ling I love you, but give me this DVD!"
On January 13, 2004, attorney-turned-farmer Oliver Wendell Douglas (Eddie Albert), his glamorous wife Lisa (Eva Gabor), and the whole Hooterville population became digitally enhanced and entered the 21st Century when this good-looking 2-Disc DVD set was released by MGM Home Entertainment.
This compact DVD package of "GREEN ACRES: THE COMPLETE FIRST SEASON" serves up all 32 color episodes from the initial season of this very funny rural sitcom. This boxed set is very nearly worth the modest asking price for the first couple of hilarious episodes all by themselves.
"Green Acres" premiered on CBS-TV on Wednesday night, September 15, 1965, at 9:00 PM Eastern Time with Episode #1, "Oliver Buys A Farm", which introduced the American people to Oliver, Lisa, Eb, Mr. Haney, Sam Drucker, and Arnold (the smartest pig in the valley).
Announcer/Newsman John Daly (of "What's My Line?" fame) serves as "narrator" throughout the debut program, which was a very clever piece of casting by the "Green Acres" brain-trust. Daly's low-key, deadpan, and well-scripted narration is one of many highlights from the first episode. Utilizing Daly as a narrator here was a very inventive way of introducing the show's basic premise and cast of characters to the audience for the first time. Mr. Daly's commentary tells us just exactly why Mr. Douglas abandoned his fancy Park Avenue penthouse apartment and his posh New York lifestyle to take up residence on a ramshackle farm near Hooterville. "Oliver Buys A Farm" is one of the best (and funniest) debut episodes of a sitcom I can think of.
Other favorites of mine in this 1st-season compilation include ..... "The Decorator", "You Can't Plug In A 2 With A 6", "Lisa Bakes A Cake", "The Price Of Apples", and "Never Look A Gift Tractor In The Mouth".
The wild and crazy Hooterville brand of ultra-silly humor, as created by show executives Jay Sommers and Paul Henning, is present in full force in every episode of "Green Acres" (and its Hooterville sister sitcom, "Petticoat Junction").
MGM did a smart thing (IMO) with this first-season DVD set of "Acres", releasing the 32 programs on just two discs (both double-sided), thus keeping the MSRP for this DVD product as low as possible. It breaks down to just 65 to 75 cents per episode. Not bad at all, as far as I'm concerned! There are eight episodes per disc side.
And it appears that MGM didn't skimp on the picture quality of these shows either (despite the bargain-basement retail price). These episodes look quite a bit better than I expected. The video looks crisp and clear for the most part, with adequate colors. The opening credits are speckled with quite a bit of dirt and grain, and a few scenes within some of the episodes also suffer from their advanced age, with specks and dirt popping up occasionally. But this isn't overly distracting or annoying, in my opinion.
Plus: these first-season "Acres" episodes are presented here in complete, uncut form (as far as I am able to discern), with running times averaging about 25-and-a-half minutes per show.
No extra supplemental features are offered up within this set. But that's okay by me. For the price paid, I couldn't really expect any extras anyway. I'm very satisfied with this boxed set as is. Sure, it might have been nice if MGM had thrown in a couple of extra features -- like, say, half-a-dozen free Lisa Douglas hotcakes. Oh -- wait a second -- scratch that idea. (LOL!)
Anyway, as I stated, this set does just fine with just the 32 episodes themselves. Being able to watch Oliver Douglas out in his fields, on his tractor, while wearing a three-piece business suit via the full Digital splendor of the DVD format is also a major positive attribute to be applied to this DVD release. :-)
Some interesting CBS-TV trivia regarding "Green Acres" ...... The final first-season episode of "Acres" aired on the exact same night that another classic CBS sitcom, "The Dick Van Dyke Show", was wrapping up its five-year run on the network -- June 1, 1966. "Green Acres", as it turned out, actually surpassed the Van Dyke series by 12 programs (in total number of episodes broadcast before going off the air) -- 170 to 158. "Acres" aired for six total seasons vs. Van Dyke's five.
In terms of ratings, "Green Acres" was a winner right out of the gate -- rising to #11 in the Nielsen TV ratings in just its first year. During the show's second season, it ranked even higher (#6).
MORE DETAILS ABOUT THIS DVD COLLECTION .....................
2-Disc Set. ... Dual-Layered, Dual-Sided Discs. ... 32 color episodes from the 1965-1966 TV season, presented in "Film Date" (Production) Order. ... To differentiate between "Side A" and "Side B" on these discs, you must look for an "A" or a "B" printed on the inner ring of each disc side. These letters appear just to the left of the words "Disc 1" or "Disc 2". (Why the disc-makers couldn't have simply marked each disc "Side A"/"Side B", I have no idea. Many double-sided discs from different companies are like this, however. It's designed as a mini-"torture" test I guess. But, it's not a huge deal, once you know where to look for the teeny-weeny "A" and "B" markings on each side. Without those letters on the discs, it really *would* be aggravating as all get out trying to figure out which side is which.)
Video -- Full Frame TV ratio (1.33:1).
Audio -- Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono.
Subtitles -- None.
Menus -- Main Menus are animated (with pictures & music). "Episode Selections" Sub-Menus are static.
Chapter Stops? -- No.
Play All Option? -- No.
Packaging -- Multi-panel "Digipak" case, with outer cardboard slipcover.
A nice 12-page booklet comes in this DVD package. The colorful booklet, which includes several photos of the cast as well as one "Video Screen Capture" still image from each episode, serves as an Episode Guide. Info includes episode numbers, ep. titles, show descriptions, original CBS Air Dates, and complete production credits for each program.
Take a break from big-city life, like Oliver Douglas has done, and pick up this terrific two-disc DVD set of "GREEN ACRES: THE COMPLETE FIRST SEASON". These shows are good for what ails you. (Unless, of course, your ailment stems from having eaten a few of Lisa's hotcakes. For that catastrophe, you'll need to purchase one of the DVD season sets of "ER".) :-)"