"I Spy" on DVD: is it a good purchase?

Discussion in 'TV on DVD and Blu-ray' started by bmasters9, Aug 6, 2010.

  1. bmasters9

    bmasters9 Supporting Actor

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    I've been seeing the first release of "I Spy," the classic 1965-68 NBC adventure series starring Bill Cosby and Robert Culp, at the Wal-Mart Supercenter in Simpsonville for $15. It looks pretty appealing, but I'm kind of on the fence about getting it. It's five discs, with 6 outings apiece on all but the last one (4 on the last one), and that's what's keeping me on the fence; I think I've heard before that when a disc of an hour series like "I Spy" has 5 or 6 outings on it, that might be pushing it in terms of video quality and compression, and that's why I'm wondering if this release would be a good purchase for me.
     
  2. BobO'Link

    BobO'Link Cinematographer

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    The series it *lots* of fun and one of the best spy drama series ever shown on TV. It features location shooting on all episodes for exteriors and a more realistic tone than many of the other spy series. Culp and Cosby have a very good chemistry, coming across almost like a buddy film. The show won several Emmy Awards for the lead actors as well as the program itself.


    As far as quality, the opening sequences/credits are a bit rough (because of the original film stock) but the quality of the shows themselves is quite good with good color and sharp images with clear audio (this is a plus as there is *no* closed captioning *or* sub-titles). Bits rates are fairly good. My player shows a bar graph for the bit rates - the rates match almost every "big studio" release for classic TV typically falling about the middle of the scale. All episodes appear to be full length and uncut running 51-52 minutes with original music.


    If you're a fan of 60's spy shows I highly recommend purchasing the entire 3 season run. There are 83 episodes for the entire series.


    Price wise, you can almost always get this series at better prices than WM:


    Amazon:

    Season 1 - $11.49

    Season 2 - $10.99

    Season 3 - $10.99


    DeepDiscount is $13.59 each season:

    Season 1

    Season 2

    Season 3


    These also go on sale for a bit less than that occasionally, but the current Amazon pricing is very good. Considering you can get all 3 seasons for typically less than just about any other hour length drama series the prices are real bargains.
     
  3. Joe Tor1

    Joe Tor1 Second Unit

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    I'll second Howie's endorsement of I Spy! I'ts a great sixties-era series. And inexpensive, too.
     
  4. FP62

    FP62 Extra

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    As someone else who has all three seasons, I can also recommend "I Spy". And the late Robert Culp's commentaries on all of the episodes he wrote are very informative and insightful. He was a very talented, thoughtful guy (RIP).
     
  5. bmasters9

    bmasters9 Supporting Actor

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    Thanks for the responses! Based on those, I think that I might get it sometime in the future. I had heard that it was a classic, and I was thinking about seeing how good it was. And, to be honest, I'm pretty much a fan of '60's television, most notably "Hawaii Five-O," but if I get this "I Spy," I might end up becoming a spy fan as well.
     
  6. Hollywoodaholic

    Hollywoodaholic Edge of Glory?

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    A moment of silence, awe and respect for the passing of actress Ahna Capri, who brought exotic hotness to just about every show she appeared on throughout the 60's including The Invaders, The Man from U.N.C.L.E., Adam-12, and I Spy. She was killed in a car crash yesterday in Los Angeles at the age of 65.

     

    Here she is in a tennis outfit at about 15:30 minutes in to this Hulu presentation of I Spy, "Will the Real Good Guys Please Stand Up?"

     

    http://www.imdb.com/video/hulu/vi1480327961/
     
  7. ToddR2

    ToddR2 Stunt Coordinator

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    R.I.P., Miss Capri. Ben, I Spy is a great show, but it's more sophisticated than Hawaii Five-O, so if you're looking for similar breezy entertainment, it might not be the show for you.
     
  8. Hakan Andersson

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    In my opinion, the problem with "I Spy" are the scripts. They are fluffy and unbelievable. Sometimes Culp & Cosby just hang around the place they visit and ends up in some kind of trouble. I thought agents had a mission when sent out in the world?

    And how many episodes involves a romantic encounter for Robert Culp, with a sloooow moving story when he and the girl are sightseeing, and in the end the girl (or someone behind her) turns out to be an enemy agent? And Culps and Cosbys "cover up" (tennis pro & trainer) is almost never dealt with, how can he be a tennis pro and stay for weeks in one certain town and without playing a single match or at least do some training? As agents the appear very unprofessional in their attitude.

     

    I have seen season 1 & 2, hopefully season 3 is better, but I have little hope. To me, "Hawaii-Five-O" is in a totally other league.
     

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