Maddie Hayes (Cybil Shepard), a wealthy former model, discovers one morning that her business manager has stolen all the money she has in the bank. However, it turns out that she still owns some non-liquid assets -- ... more »money-losing companies which were maintained as tax write-offs -- one of which is a detective agency run by David Addison (Bruce Willis). Maddie meets with him to inform him that the company is to be shut down, but he persuades her to keep it open by convincing her that the detective agency can make money. Maddie becomes David's new boss and accompanies him on adventure after adventure. While their personalities clash, a sexual tension arises in the time they spend together. But the question always remains... will they or won't they?« less
""Moonlighting" truly is one of the best television series of all time. It was extremely creative, loaded with great humor and drama, and occasionally some action and intrigue. It faltered a bit in its last two seasons, but even they are worth 5 stars.
The premise: Maddie Hayes (Cybill Sheperd) is a former model running a nearly bankrupt detective agency. David Addison (Bruce Willis) convinces her to run the agency together as partners instead of shutting it down. They bumble their way through many mysteries, solving most of them. Maddie and David couldn't be more different - Maddie is conservative, reserved, preoccupied with being responsible, and slightly repressed and uptight. David is spontaneous almost to a fault, and not terribly responsible. These stark personality differences lead to some very funny banter in every episode. Yet, both have big hearts, and over the course of Seasons 1 and 2, they fall very much in love - even though they cannot admit it - especially to themsevles.
In the typical episode, David and Maddie work on a case. However, there's much more going on. Events in the case parallel events in one or both of the main characters' lives, or their relationship with each other. It's obvious that the writers, directors, cast and crew are having a great time making this show. The writing is very clever, and as the series progresses, the characters occasionally show awareness that they are characters on a television show - to great humorous effect. In later seasons, there are episodes that have themes - such as a black and white film noir take-off, and a hilarious modernized version of Shakespear's Taming of the Shrew. In its first two seasons, Moonlighting is a bit more conventional - though still innovative and still one of the finest television programs ever.
Moonlighting has other strengths. One is Agnes DiPesto, the delightfully quirky receptionist that answers every phone call with a different rhyme. Another is a roster of great guest stars, like Orson Wells, Tim Robbins, Dana Delany, Whoopi Goldberg, and many more (and the ones I named are all in the first two seasons, so you'll be seeing them on this DVD set). Moonlighting also features great music - not just the classic theme song by Al Jarreau. Nearly every episode has great classic tunes. The first two seasons include songs by Little Richard, Patsy Cline, Smokey Robinson, Otis Redding, The Rolling Stones, The Temptations, The Isley Brothers, and Gene Kelly, and many others.
The picture and sound quality are excellent for a 20-year-old TV show, and better than when these episodes were broadcast on Bravo in recent years. This set is a great value, too, considering that you get a total of 23 episodes (all 5 episodes from the brief Season One, which began late in the year, plus 18 episodes from Season Two, which ran a regular fall-to-spring schedule). The DVD extras are a lot of fun, especially two short documentaries (one for each of the first two seasons) that feature interviews with Bruce, Cybill, the actress that plays Miss DiPesto, and some of the writers and crew members. They all have interesting stories to share about their experiences making Moonlighting.
If you're curious about why it has taken so long for Moonlighting to come to DVD, it's because Lions Gate had great difficulty securing the necessary rights to all of the songs featured in the various episodes. The music came from a variety of different sources and record labels, some of which have gone bankrupt or been taken over by other corporations in the last 15 years. A few years ago, Lions Gate considered releasing Moonlighting on DVD without music, but this was unacceptable to Glenn Caron, the series' creator. Finally, they obtained the necessary rights to all of the songs that so greatly enriched this wonderful show. They also got Bruce Willis & Cybill Sheperd involved in some of the DVD extras, and now we can finally see the result of all this hard work!"
A LANDMARK SHOW NOW ON DVD AT LAST!!!!
Paulo Leite | Lisbon, Portugal | 03/28/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Moonlighting came in 1985 and had a great impact in all the fiction written for television since then. Why? Well.. let's see...
It all started as the basic detective formula: two incompatible oddballs brought together having to solve one case in each episode - basically the same premisse present in most of the shows until then.
But there is more than meets the eye.
Moonlighting introduced new values such as MUSIC.... no other show had such a dramatic use of music as Moonlighting. Here, the usual "chase music" present in all shows were changed for Motown, blues, old rock classics and other kinds of music that where always used to a dramatic effect. The choice of each song we hear throughout the seasons was cleverly made... It means that most of the shows that came after... from CHINA BEACH to SEX AND THE CITY to SIX FEET UNDER owes a lot to the way Moonlighting started to use music. I just feel sorry that the producers never released a bigger soundtrack on cd because the CD that came in 1987 was far from its potential....
Moonlighting opened up the TV narrative to the inner mind of the characters... in the sence that from then on, everything was possible in terms of what's going on inside the characters and the way we see it on the screen. The usual voiceover narration (that's as far as TV shows went until Moonlighting) was replaced by dreams, animation, musical numbers, richer editing, etc... again, Moonlighting opened the path to the great TV fiction we see today. THE SOPRANOS owe a lot to that.
More... No other TV show relied upon the viewer's bond to the characters as Moonlighting... you can see that by the incredible number of ways fiction and reality merged during many episodes... many times, David Addison adressed the audience directly. Many times the characters show the sets and the fact that they are in a TV show... something that 99% of the TV shows at that time could not do. It is true that Moonlighting was not the only show to do that. SLEDGE HAMMER, many times did the same... but Moonlighting wasn't only a comedy...
...It was perhaps one of the first TV shows to blend different genres that were usually kept separated. Was it comedy? Was it detective-genre like MAGNUM P.I.? Was it romance? It was certainly not fantasy... but there was a lot of fantasy in it.
...It was one of the first TV "self-aware" shows that even paid homages to Cinema (Film noir, great musicals, keystone cops... just to name a few).
It was also one of the first TV shows that actually had great supporting roles with plots and conflicts on their own.
Moonlighting brought also more mature themes and an increasingly complexness to the leading character's motivations. And in this sence it is fascinating to see that in Moonlighting we have a detective show where many episodes go by where Maddie and David do not have cases to solve... where the spotlight is in their relationship.
It is like the show started as a formula and drifted to something richer, more complex, newer...
TODAY, fiction is miles beyond Moonlighting... but the show remains fascinating as an example of a TV product where everything is right. I trully believe Moonlighting had an important role in the development of TV fiction into what we see today.
By the way... this DVD edition has been long anticipated by many fans like myself... It seems that it took a long time to secure the rights to all the great songs in the episodes... but now that everything is in order... let's enjoy the perfect chemistry between Cybill Shepherd and Bruce Willis... the last heirs of Katherine Hapburn and Cary Grant...
Simply great!!!!!!!!! "
Comments from a long time Moonlighting fan
C. Klauss | Florida | 03/21/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"These DVD's have been long anticipated. As the webmaster of the popular Moonlighting site, http://www.DavidandMaddie.com, I think I can speak for the entire fan community when I say, "These babies are way overdue!"
"Moonlighting" was a smart, sassy and very popular series in the mid to late 80's. Maddie Hayes and David Addison were the "hot" couple on TV back then. When this show first aired, it created such a buzz not only for its innovative scripts and the creative risks it took--but for the phenomenal casting of Cybill Shepherd and Bruce Willis in these roles. They were all the rage in 1986 & 1987 and no one that lived through the 80's could possibly have gotten through the time without knowing who they were.
The fans of the series have been loyal and new fans have been born out of more recent airings on cable channels both here in the US and overseas. Their persistance and work have paid off with the release of these DVD's.
Season One has in addition to the Pilot, 5 episodes that deal with Maddie and David trying to survive with few or no clients. And the ones they do have are usually not what they seem to be on surface. There are some really funny scenes as the two banter and investigate. The well-known "Looking for a man with a Mole on his nose scene" is in a season one episode.
Season two delivers 18 great episodes as the pair get to know each other better and better, the most famous one being the black and white episode "The Dream Sequence Always Rings Twice." Other notable episodes include a very funny Christmas episode complete with Mary, Joseph, Three Kings and a camel; the episode with the wacky chase scene with Maddie, David, a client, and her husband all dressed in identical black dresses with a veil as they race after each other to the tune of the William Tell Overture; the Buenos Aires trip with Maddie and David at a casino, the hilarious "My Fair David" which features a contest to see if David can act like a mature adult; as well as the episode with the first real kiss shared between the duo.
The music in the episodes is also a notable part. There are Motown classics, pop tunes, as well as Big Band era tunes sung by Cybill Shepherd ala Rita Hayworth in "Gilda".
Some of the exciting guest stars in seasons one and two included Dana Delany, Tim Robbins, Orson Welles, Barbara Bain, Mark Linn-Baker, Whoopi Goldberg and Judd Nelson. You also get to meet David's goofy brother aptly played by SNL alum Charles Rocket and Maddie's parents, the wonderful Eva Marie Saint and the late Robert Webber.
So don't delay in ordering these; TV this good only comes around once in a Blue Moon.
Added to on April 3, 2005. I just noticed that so far the Amazon.com listing doesn't mention the extras that have been announced for this release. So I will list them here for those that want to know.
The list has been announced to include:
Cast and Crew commentaries including Glenn Gordon Caron, Cybill Shepherd and Bruce Willis; Not Just A Day Job - The Story of Moonlighting; The Moonlighting Phenomenon; Deleted Scenes; Gag Reel
This sounds like a nice mix of fun and informative extras.
For those that keep asking: yes, the Pilot episode is included.
Mayhem, mystery and Bruce Willis with hair...
Byron Kolln | the corner where Broadway meets Hollywood | 03/13/2006
(4 out of 5 stars)
"MOONLIGHTING remains one of the most stylish and acclaimed TV shows of the 1980's, with it's fun mix of mystery, mayhem and `Odd Couple' chemistry between the two main characters. When ex-model Maddie Hayes (Cybill Shepherd) inherits ownership of the struggling Blue Moon Detective Agency, she gets much more than she bargained for with detective David Addison (Bruce Willis), not to mention eccentric secretary Agnes DiPesto (Allyce Beasley). The whole series hinged on the unresolved sexual tension between Maddie and David as they fought and bickered with each other, solved crimes, and fought and bickered some more...!
The pairing of longtime screen beauty Shepherd with up-and-comer Willis proved to be the key ingredient for the show's success, their chemistry is still the main reason why the series works so well even on repeat screenings, and their witty banter is hilarious.
This DVD boxset includes all the episodes from Seasons 1 and 2. Also included is an entertaining 2-part featurette which delves into the genenis and making of the show. Longtime fans of MOONLIGHTING are going to love this.
COMPLETE EPISODE LISTING:
"Moonlighting" (Pilot) - When her accountant absconds with all her savings, ex-glamour girl Maddie Hayes turns to one of her neglected business assets for a reversal of fortunes...
"Gunfight at the So-So Corral" - Maddie and David are desperate for a case, a seemingly simple assignment to find a man's lost son - unknown to them is the fact that the son is a hired killer.
"Read the Mind, See the Movie" - When Maddie and David try to track down an industrial secret leak, the unlikely detective team becomes involved in a bizarre and dangerous caper complete with a psychic.
"The Next Murder You Hear" - Unconventional detectives David and Maddie take on an intriguing case when they launch an investigation into the bizarre on-air murder of a late-night radio talk show host.
"Next Stop Murder" - Maddie, David and Miss DiPesto become trapped on a train, leading them into a bizarre murder mystery with an assortment of weird characters.
"The Murder's in the Mail" - Maddie and David are led into dangerous international intrigue when they become involved with a collection agency, and find a debtor who has cashed in his chips - permanently.
"Brother, Can You Spare a Blonde?" - Maddie and David realise their lives are on the line after David's fun-loving brother, whom he hasn't seen in years, arrives for an unexpected visit with a newfound fortune - and eyes for Maddie.
"The Lady in the Iron Mask" - When a woman with a disfigured face hires David and Maddie to find the man who was responsible, they are in a quandry because they discover that the act was committed not for revenge - but for love.
"Money Talks, Maddie Walks" - Maddie enters into a wild high-stakes game of poker against the man who sent her into financial ruin.
"The Dream Sequence Always Rings Twice" - In a unique format for series television, David and Maddie appear in film noir-styled black and white sequences as they delve into an intriguing murder case from the 40's. Guest starring Orson Welles.
"My Fair David" - A rash bet crimps the relationship between David and Maddie when they agree on a wager aimed at changing each other's personal style - just as they take on a big case.
"Knowing Her" - David's married ex-girlfriend seeks help in locating some stolen jewellry, but a series of mishaps leading Maddie and David to believe her estranged husband may be trying to kill her.
"Somewhere Under the Rainbow" - A lovely lass who claims she's a leprechaun asks Maddie and David to protect her from a crazed man who is after her crock of gold.
"Portrait of Maddie" - The authorities summon Maddie to identify an artist who died after completing her portrait, but she has no idea of who the man is or why he painted her.
"Atlas Belched" - An important file of phone numbers is stolen and sparks an extortion attempt that has Maddie and David on the run from the law.
"T'was the Episode Before Christmas" - Maddie, David and Miss DiPesto share the personal joy of Christmas when a hot case turns their special holiday experience into a surprising adventure, as three "kings" search for a babe in arms.
"Bride of Tupperman" - Maddie fires David after the professional he chooses as the ideal wife for a lonely client looking for a bride is accused of the man's murder.
"North By North DiPesto" - Maddie's gift of a banquet ticket promises a night of romance for Miss DiPesto, until Agnes finds herself in the arms of a handsome stranger with sinister men in hot pursuit.
"In God We Strongly Suspect" - Maddie and David spend the night with the body of an escape artist whose widow fears he will return from the dead - and the corpse proves to be a tricky customer.
"Every Daughter's Father is a Virgin" - David resists and Maddie insists when the model-turned-detective decides to investigate her own father because her mother fears he's having an affair.
"Witness for the Execution" - Maddie and David find themselves on opposite sides of the question when an aged man asks them to witness his self-arranged murder so that his insurance company will pay off.
"Sleep Talking Guy" - David covers himself with glory by using information from a hooker to crack an important criminal case, but Maddie puzzles over how he got the lead.
"Funeral for a Door Nail" - Maddie and David prowl seamy and dangerous underworld to locate a hired killer after their grief-stricken client pays to have himself murdered, then changes his mind.
"Camille" - An unsuspecting David pursuades Maddie to hire a cool con-artist as a Blue Moon detective, but the new employee has her eye on bigger business opportunities. Guest starring Whoopi Goldberg."
Its FINALLY Here!!!
Count Vertigo | Las Vegas, NV | 03/05/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Those of us that grew up watching this show in the mid to late 80's remember it fondly. The undeniable chemisty that existed between the characters of Maddie (Cybill Sheppard) and David (a young Bruce Willis with actual hair) kept us coming back again and again, and remains one of the best TV matchups of all time. The humor and creativity behind this series is so superior that it holds up still 20 years after its initial airing. From the breaking of the fourth wall to acknowledge the watching audiences' existence to the almost slapstick comedy that happened in nearly every episode, this series set the bar extremely high for all series that followed. For all that have waited patiently through all the false promises of this series being released on DVD, your patience is finally being rewarded. A heartfelt "Thank You" to Lions Gate studios for finally allowing this show to finally see the light of day again on DVD. Now they just need to hasten the release of the remainder of the seasons to DVD. I look forward to once again seeing arguably the best episode of the series, "Atomic Shakespeare" ("I HATE IAMBIC PENTAMETER!") from season 3, in all its hilarious glory on DVD."