When Pittsburgh sports columnist George Owens (Bob Uecker) and wife Marsha (Ilene Graff), a new law school student, find themselves with little time to spend with their three rambunctious kids, Marsha places an ad for some... more » household help. Enter Mr. Belvedere (Christopher Hewett), a quick-witted, refined, portly English housekeeper. Despite the objections of George, Mr. Belvedere is hired and quickly sets about whipping the Owens family into shape.
Mr. Belvedere premiered in 1985 and enjoyed a six season run, but has endured ever since as a symbol of its time. The story of one family trying to have it all, with some unlikely help, the show was not afraid to deal with real issues and still make us laugh. Affectionately remembered, Mr. Belvedere lives on as a cult favorite and an icon of 80s suburbia.
* New Interviews With the Cast
* Saturday Night Live Mr. Belvedere Fan Club Sketch« less
E. Hornaday | Lawrenceville, NJ United States | 01/06/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"If you're sick and tired of today's un-funny and truly mean comedies that are billed as "family sitcoms," then this DVD release of Mr. Belvedere from the mid-1980s is for you.
Mr. Belvedere had heart. A Classic TV Family Sitcom that remains vastly underrated, it was based on the Gwen Davenport novel, "Belvedere," which also had spawned two much earlier movie adaptations. The TV series brought a high-brow Englishman to work as a live-in nanny for a middle-class American family. It ran Friday night's on ABC from 1985 to 1990.
It starred Christopher Hewitt, who portrayed Lynn Aloysis Belvedere, a very proper Englishman who had worked for the British gentry, including Winston Churchill and English royalty. The series begins when Belvedere shows up at doorstep of the American residence of George Owens on a very cold and snowy December night. Ownes, played surprisingly well by George Uecker, portrayed exactly what he was in real-life: a former Major League Baseball player and sportscaster.
George's wife on the series, Marsha Cameron Owens, played by Ilene Graff, as well as their three children, immediately fall under the charm of Mr. Belvedere. The same cannot be said of George, who has the exact opposite response to Belvedere, and the feeling is decidedly mutual. Nonetheless, Mr. Belvedere is hired and the rest is Classic TV history.
Much of the series involves the conflict between George and Mr. Belvedere, but also the interaction of the "stuffy" British servant with Marsha, who is also a law student, and the children: Wesley T. Owens, played by Brice Beckham; Kevin Owens, played by Rob Stone; and Heather Owens, played by Tracy Wells. Especially compelling is the relationship that evolves between Belvedere and the spirited and wise-cracking Wesley.
At the end of most episodes, Belvedere is seen relaxing in his room in the evenings after the children are in bed, recording their "everyday" experiences in his diary for future use for a novel he is writing!
A mid-season replacement series that premiered in the middle of March 1985, the first season had only seven episodes. This boxed set includes those episodes and the Complete Second Season, which had 22 episodes.
Season One episodes are: Stranger in the Night, the pilot that introduces the characters; The Outcasts; Gotta Dance; Gorgeous George; What I Did for Love; The Lost Weekend; and Sweet Charity.
Season Two episodes are: The Lion Sleeps Tonight; Tornado; Cheerleader; Requiem; Delivery; The Contract; Vows; Strike; The Letter; Pinball; The Prize; Speechless; The Teacher; The Dropout; Rivals; Wesley's Friend; The Will; Valentine's Day; Heather's Tutor; Amish; Dinner for Two; and The Play."
Better than you will remember
Christopher R. Hernandez | New Jersey | 03/28/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Shout! has done another excellent job with their release of Mr Belvedere seasons one & two. The episodes are all the original network episodes, not syndicated cuts. The original opening credits have been restored, inculding the original pilot opening. No music is replaced. The video is for the most part fine. Occasionally there is a blurry spot but the show is over 20 years old. The audio sounds fine also, but occasionally the sound is slightly lower in some spots.
Now for the show itself. I watched this show when it originally aired and haven't seen it much in syndication since. My memory of the show is mostly from it's original network run. I loved the show then but wasn't mature enough to fully appreciate it's humor. After watching this set I enjoyed the show even more than I remembered. As an adult I can catch the adult jokes that I missed when I was a kid. This show is as entertaining to adults as it is to a younger audience. It holds up well. I watched episode after episode not wanting to come to the end and enjoying every second of it.
The set does have special features. There are interviews with the surviving cast members (minus Tracy Wells). They talk about how much fun they had on the show, including the pranks they played on each other. They talk of their fond memories and how they are still rmeembered to this day for their Mr Belvedere roles. Hopefully future sets will have an interview with Tracy Wells. The other special feature is the SNL Mr Belvedere fan club skit. That has nothing to do with the show, but it is hysterically funny. Tom Hanks is in it. The set also features two clips Family Guy in which Stewie sings the Mr Belvedere theme song. This is also mentioned in the interviews.
If anyone is on the fence about buying this set and worrying that they won't enjoy it as much as they remember, worry no more. The show is better than remembered. A few plots may be dated but as a whole the show stands up very well. You won't be disappointed."
CLEAN, WHOLESOME AND INSPIRING!!!
a viewer | antioch, tn United States | 04/22/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"One of the last of the truly great family sitcoms, I remember watching Mr. Belvedere on Friday nights during its first-run. I didn't even know it was being released on DVD until I was in the store the other day and saw it!! I grabbed it immediately, almost leaping with joy out to my car!
Its even better than I remember. This is a sitcom that was truly a "family" show. All members of the cast had great chemistry together!! No wonder the series became a huge hit!!
Its decent, yet heartwarming and even inspiring "controversial" episodes that are dealt with in a sensitive, loving way. The series isn't mawkishly sentimental either. Its just good, clean, wholesome fun. Best of all......it is FUNNY!!!! Watching Mr. Belvedere one-up everyone or the multi-talented Brice Beckham as Wesley steal the show makes for great classic television.
I also remember thinking how pretty Tracy Wells (Heather) was and how clean-cut and handsome Rob Stone (Kevin) was (he still is).
This is an awesome family show and I hope we won't be disappointed in the fact that companies have the habit of releasing great shows like this for one or two seasons....then don't release the rest of them. Bring the rest of the seasons of this great, classic family sitcom on.....pronto!!"
Sheila A. Lasker | USA | 03/29/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I personally had never seen Mr. Belvedere before. Someone had mentioned it to me so I gave it a try. I was intrigued. It's truly a classy show with heart. Something the whole family could watch. I loved it!"
Niced trip back to the 80's
midwest tv guy | Omaha, NE | 08/24/2009
(4 out of 5 stars)
"I remember when "Belvedere" first aired in the 80's. It wasn't groundbreaking, although the AIDS episode was one of the first to deal with the subject. It was though, charming and quite funny, especially the play between Mr. Belvedere and Wesley. After watching on DVD, I was suprised how good it actually was. Sure, it has some cheesy 80's references thoughout, but it is a nice, family comedy (which became so popular in the 80's, thanks, in part to the success of "The Cosby Show"). "