One of the brightest stars of the Golden Age of Hollywood, the lovely Loretta Young appeared in over 100 films during her movie career. Some of her most memorable roles from the 30s and 40s were A Man's Castle, Ramona and ... more »The Farmer's Daughter, for which she won an Academy Award in 1947. In the 1950's, Loretta turned her talents to television. Her show first aired in September 1953, and in all, Loretta made over 280 episodes! This 3 DVD box set includes the first thirty episodes, starting with the original show Letter from Loretta, retitled The Loretta Young Show. The weekly show made Loretta one of the best known and beloved personalities on television. Her patented entrance, a dramatic swirl through her living room door,wearing the latest in fashion designer gowns, gained for her the reputation as America's best dressed actress. Authorized by the Loretta Young Estate, this box set includes rare family home movies and photographs. Loretta's son, film producer Chris Lewis, narrates this journey through Loretta's career as actress, mother and role model to millions of American women.« less
The First Season Of Loretta Young's TV Series (30 Eps.)
David Von Pein | Mooresville, Indiana; USA | 04/15/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This is a 3-Disc DVD boxed set containing 30 debut-season episodes of a half-hour anthology TV series from the very early "Golden Age" of television --- "The Loretta Young Show".
Loretta Young was a very popular movie star prior to taking a big risk by deciding to star in her own series on the "small" screen in 1953 (when she was 40). But her new NBC-TV drama/anthology series was very well-received by viewers and stayed on the air for 8 seasons. The program earned Loretta multiple Emmy Awards during its lifetime on the airwaves.
Miss Young served as host for all of these shows, and starred in about half of the episodes herself. She appeared in the leading role in a total of 162 episodes of her series, which premiered on September 20, 1953.
The series was originally called "Letter To Loretta", but was re-named "The Loretta Young Show" midway through the first season, in February 1954.
A little about Loretta ...... Loretta Young was born "Gretchen Michaela Young" in Salt Lake City, Utah, on January 6, 1913. She appeared in a little more than 100 feature motion pictures in her career, beginning as a 4-year-old in "The Primrose Ring" (in 1917).
She starred opposite some of Hollywood's biggest names of the 1930s and 1940s, such as Clark Gable, Spencer Tracy, Ronald Colman, Cary Grant, Tyrone Power, Don Ameche, Charles Boyer, Robert Taylor, Joseph Cotten, and Robert Young.
Loretta won an Academy Award for her role in 1947's "The Farmer's Daughter". She passed away (of ovarian cancer), at age 87, on August 12, 2000.
This DVD set, produced in 2004, comes to us via "Marathon Music & Video", and presents all of these episodes in their original TV Full-Frame aspect ratio of 1.33:1. All episodes are in black-and-white. The DVD picture quality here isn't really very much better than some VHS tapes of this series that I have, including a 7-Tape set of VHS videos that was released by this same company ("M.M.&V.") in 1997. The DVDs are probably a trifle bit better than VHS quality, but not by much.
A lot of "noise" and grain are visible on these prints; but the episodes themselves are still very fun to watch all these years after their initial TV airings. The writing for this series was first-rate, IMO. Some really good story lines play out on screen (most with Loretta herself in the leading role).
The audio on these DVDs is a re-mixed Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround Stereo (or, per the packaging, "Full Dimension Surround Sound"). But, to tell the truth, this audio sounds no better (or "full") than these episodes' original Mono sound. A full-fledged 5.1 track is actually pretty much of a wasted effort when applied to this type of material, because Loretta's series features very little in the way of music or sound effects that would benefit at all from placing any sound in the rear speakers of your home theater. In addition, this TV series is mostly dialogue-driven, so most of the audio will (or should) stay fixed in the front (center) speaker.
This "faux 5.1" sound still has a lot of background hiss and crackling underneath the dialogue. But I, for one, don't mind this at all. In my view, it lends an "old-time" sound quality to the 1950s material on the screen. The "hiss/crackling" isn't highly pronounced, however. So it shouldn't really be very annoying to anyone's ears.
Each of the three discs in this collection comes in its own separate full-sized DVD plastic case, with unique cover art on the front of each disc. A thin (but adequate enough) cardboard slipcase box comfortably holds the three discs. There are no paper enclosures included here. Episode titles are listed on the back of each DVD case, as well as on the discs themselves.
There are 10 episodes per disc. I've noticed a few small edits in these prints, with Loretta's trademark "dress-swirling entrance" being cut out of some of the programs. The fact that the episodes are not displayed on a "timed" track on these DVDs makes it much more difficult to check for full, unedited running times. IOW, there's no "elapsed time counter" shown on these discs (it just says "Play" where you'd normally see the episode run time clicking off the minutes and seconds elapsed). So, if you want to "time" the shows, you'll need to do it yourself, clocking the run times on your own.
I have "clocked" one of the episodes in this DVD collection, and the running time was just under 25 minutes, including the opening and closing credits (24:50 to be precise). So, for the most part, based on that run time, I believe that what we're getting here are the full-length episodes as they originally were seen on network television in the early '50s.
In addition to the thirty Season-One (1953-1954) episodes of Loretta's series, this boxed set comes complete with some interesting extra features as well. Bonus programming includes the following items:
>> A brief Loretta Young "Biography", hosted by Loretta's son, Chris Lewis. (Run Time -- 3:30.)
>> Loretta Young Home Movies (also hosted/narrated by Chris Lewis). This bonus is really fun to see. Many old-time (1930s) behind-the-camera clips from Loretta's movies are shown here. Plus many shots of Loretta and family at home too. This home-movie bonus runs for a fairly-lengthy 27:45.
>> Loretta Young Movie Trailers.
>> Plus a few "Bonus Film Clips" of Loretta. This bonus section includes a rare old-time movie clip of a 16-year-old Loretta Young singing and dancing with her older sister (Sally Blane) in the 1929 film "The Show Of Shows". Other film snippets feature Miss Young doing some public-service announcements. Some good old stuff here.
Still more information about this DVD set:
>> ANY SUBTITLES? -- No. >> LANGUAGES -- English only. >> CHAPTER STOPS? -- No. >> "PLAY ALL" FEATURE? -- No. >> DVD REGION CODE -- "Zero" (playable all over the world). >> MENUS -- Main Menu doubles as Episode-Selection Menu as well. ... Theme music from the series plays while the Main Menu is on screen. ... Slight bit of animation on each disc (with a cleverly-inserted "montage" of several Loretta Young "full-skirted entrances").
On the whole, this three-disc DVD package (with 30 episodes from Loretta Young's highly-acclaimed weekly television series right through to the bonus materials featuring the show's star) provides a fine tribute to one of America's greatest and most beloved actresses of her day. And there are some darn good and well-scripted TV episodes in here too. I'm grateful to those involved for bringing these very rarely-seen installments of Miss Young's excellent TV series to the DVD-Video format."
Loretta Young Show: Season 1
Robt E. Jorgensen | 06/03/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I thoroughly enjoyed every one of the 30 episodes. It was simply marvelous to see Loretta in these excellent plays. Since I was born in 1946, I was only allowed to stay up to see the last two seasons. If my wish could be answered, I would want to see all the the seasons of her show available on DVD. She was voted favorite actress by American teenagers in 1959. I was just 13!! Since Miss Young's fan base is an aging group of baby boomers and even older folks we can only hope that ALL of her TV shows can be made available soon. Many of her fans have already passed on and perhaps are enjoying her company in heaven. Please act soon! I'm seen all kind of garbage put on DVD. We need more of the quality that TV history has to offer. In conclusion, Season 1 was excellently done and the extras were just marvelous. Please give the public MORE AND SOON!!!!!!!!!!!!"
Solid Show, Worthy Buy
Anthony | Canada | 09/10/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Despite the relatively poor quality of the shows due to their age and lack of remastery this DVD collection is still worth looking in to. My step-mother was a big fan and actually watched the show during it's initial run but i had never heard of the show. We watched it together and she enjoyed it for because of its nostalgic qualities and the fact that it is essentially timeless. I, being a fan of things from the 50's and earlier enjoyed it too despite the show's uber-feelgoodness and slight chessiness. The shows average 23 minutes with a one minute ending where LY states the moral of the story and reads a quotation that is actually suprisingly profound and enjoyable. In short, whether you watched the show when it was first aired or have never seen or heard of the show, there's something for everybody who can appreciate classic movies/tv shows. The one star deduction is due to the grainy picture quality and the occassional times when the audio is absent and subtitles are provided."
Great Little Piece of Classic Television
Hank Charleston | North Carolina | 04/15/2006
(4 out of 5 stars)
"My late mother was a big fan of Loretta Young. I had never seen the series until last year on Sky Angel Satellite. I wanted to see what it was that intrigued my mom. In the process, my wife became a big fan of The Loretta Young Show and asked for this set for her birthday. We both enjoyed watching the complete first season and look forward to more collections. What I am sure my mother liked about this show (& Loretta Young, in general) was her faith and moral values. It's too bad television today has gone so far over to the dark side that one could never imagine seeing a program like this produced today! The extras are nice, but we found the biography a little disappointing. It ends with her starting the TV series! Nice price and definitely worth every dollar."
Lovely Loretta at Her Peak
"Tee" | LA | 04/06/2010
(5 out of 5 stars)
"THE LORETTA YOUNG SHOW was way before my time but I became a fan of this lovely star via her old movies in recent decades and decided to buy this set on whim. I'm glad I did because this series fully explains Loretta's phenomenal popularity as the 1950's most popular dramatic television actress. This anthology series covers all sorts of genres from religious themes to murder mysteries and it's easy to see why so many of Loretta's contemporaries (Jane Wyman, June Allyson, etc.) followed her lead on to the small screen given the wide variety of parts she was able to play. From prim matron in one episode to saucy broad in the next, Loretta proves she was far more than just a decorative personality but a very talented actress. And I totally loved the bonus features especially Loretta's home movies which include some very rare early color footage. This set is a must not only for classic television buffs but classic movie fans as the beloved Loretta Young is thoroughly in her element here."