Next Tuesday 9/10 Will Tell A Lot About CBS

Discussion in 'TV on DVD and Blu-ray' started by Frank Soyke, Sep 2, 2013.

  1. Professor Echo

    Professor Echo Screenwriter

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    The internet is a big place. Why waste time on a site that doesn't do what it's supposed to do? For me there is no benefit or incentive to navigate through any site that has indefensibly compromised its purpose and practice. When a site gets corrupt by its own flexible principles, I move on and find another. There's enough imposed corruption in our everyday life to have to further submit to it online amidst so much choice. If a website cannot even honor its own reason for being, good riddance.
     
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  2. rmw650

    rmw650 Screenwriter

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    I never cared for the fact they got bought out by TVGuide and since that takeover, there just doesn't seem to be that much effort being placed into that site as of late and as of this typing, there's still no mention of these two titles, but they hype the Acorn British titles bigtime and those are mostly available on BBC America's website, so is this only pertaining to certain brick and mortar stores they have issues with or is it all-around?
     
  3. JMas

    JMas Stunt Coordinator

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    So what did we learn about CBS on Tuesday 9/10?

    I don't know if we can say Gunsmoke is stalled yet, but they have certainly slowed down the pace at which they were releasing them.
     
  4. smithbrad

    smithbrad Screenwriter

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    How do you figure that? They released two and a half seasons this year, more then probably any other year. The last season released was just last month. I'm betting we will see two more seasons released next year as well. You have to remember with Gunsmoke CBS remasters for furture HD broadcast, this all takes time and money to do. Gunsmoke is one of the last CBS series I would question with regards to stalled series.
     
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  5. JoeDoakes

    JoeDoakes Cinematographer
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    At one point Gary O seemed to think that the color seasons of Gunsmoke would be sold via Amazon or something. Things may have changed since then.
     
  6. smithbrad

    smithbrad Screenwriter

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    I see no reason CBS wouldn't keep remastering all the Gunsmoke seasons for HD syndication. While many view the b/w seasons as better, I believe there are plenty that still appreciate the later seasons, and they are in color as a added incemtive. My only concern would be based on the continued marketability of the physical media format versus streaming as to whether we get them all distributed of DVD or Blu-ray formats. At the rate they are going with their remastering efforts (approximately two seasons a year) it could still take another five to six years before they are all complete. While I think physical media will still be a worth while method of releasing content for may years to come, it is hard to know for sure when it comes to technology swings.

    In addition, the success of Star Trek TNG on Blu-ray may continue to open doors to other CBS series. I can see all the Star Trek TV series getting a release at some point on Blu-ray. So where do they go from there. We've already heard about the Honeymooners. Some other possibles for release on Blu-ray in the next couple of years could be The Fugitive, I Love Lucy, Andy Griffith Show, Hawaii Five-O, and Mannix. With their HD catalog continuing to grow, one would have to wonder if they even wait until Bonanza and Gunsmoke are completed on DVD before think about Blu-ray releases for those titles.

    I feel comfortable enough that CBS/Paramount and WB will at least continue their releases for quite some time. They may not always release as quick as we want, nor will they always hit some of the obscure titles that some want, but i think they will continue at a methodical pace.
     
  7. Ron1973

    Ron1973 Beverly Hillbilles nut extraordinaire

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    I know that CBS has stalled some series and some of those I think they should be called to task on......My Three Sons, Barnaby Jones, etc. All in all, though, they haven't done a bad job when it comes to classic TV and it looks like it will probably continue judging by what they've did so far this year.
     
  8. Jack P

    Jack P Producer

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    If there's one CBS title that should be redone *properly* for Blu-Ray it's "The Odd Couple." It still annoys me that there hasn't been the same level of outrage over the music butchery that was done on that title from S3 through S5 where so many episodes were ruined because they would cut out bits of *comedy* that involved song titles/lyrics many of which were so integral to the plots (in particular, "Cocktails For Two" on the episode "Strike Up The Band Or Else" which is now incomprehensible as a result) like we had with "The Fugitive". I have the sets, but I avoid all the ruined episodes and am only thankful there are enough intact ones to keep enjoying but this show should be redone from start to finish.
     
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  9. smithbrad

    smithbrad Screenwriter

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    Ron and Jack, I agree CBS has not been perfect in anyway. They have had their share of misfires, and when it comes to music substitution or cuts, their misfires can be major. I have no doubt that My Three Son's was most likely stalled because of poor sales due to music substitutions, split seasons, and high initial pricing (I have the two seasons released). I can only assume Barnaby Jones because of low sales in correlation with their remastering costs (since that one was remastered in HD), while Cannon on the other hand was not remastered at all and went through the MOD program. I believe CBS has set a high bar with their remastering that when they don't do it they get flamed (e.g., Bonanza season 2, Rawhide seasons 1 and 4, Cannon). But the revival of Petticoat Junction and Beverly Hillbillies in remastered form is potential good news for other slowed series as well. Maybe it is just that priorities changed and some were slowed while others picked up pace. With some of the others completed (e.g., Perry Mason, Untouchables, Rawhide (after one more season)), maybe some others will get second chances. So I just don't see any fear at this point of CBS overall slowing down, as much as it being a methodical pace based on how they approach remastering most of their series for futire HD syndication, and that all takes time. And some changes in series priorities may take place along the way presenting a stalled impression.

    I have to say that personally I'd rather CBS take their time and do shows right. While at the time it was nice seeing a season of Bonanza and Rawhide come out a bit quicker, or that Cannon made a few releases, but what they do in remastering is exceptional and worth the wait. At least to me. Now obviously, I would prefer no music substitutions either.


    Jack, I am with you on the Odd Couple. I watched it when it aired in prime time and syndication, and have all the seasons myself but have not watched them as of yet. My memory is not as good as some here that can pick out music substitutions and cuts so easily, so i may be okay with them, as is. However, it would be nice if they received the "Fugitive" treatment for restoring the sets. However, I have to wonder how often that will happen to a mistreated series. Part of me thinks the Fugitive at least had a guardian angel promoting that redo.
     
  10. Jack P

    Jack P Producer

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    THe one thing you have to acknowledge where Warner is superior to CBS is that with Warner you *never* have to have any paranoid fear of music replacement on any of their releases. They take the time to get clearances and if they can't get them, they remain unreleased until it gets resolved which is the better way to go at this point. With CBS, there is always, notwithstanding the "Fugitive" fix, an instinctive worry that doesn't get resolved until a set is released and we can see for ourselves.
     
  11. smithbrad

    smithbrad Screenwriter

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    And even though this is a CBS thread, I'd like to give a postive plug to WB, as well. I've never been a fan of the DVD-R approach and did not like the initial pricing model that went with it. However, they have put out some quality releases, and as time went on they put more into remastering and started an initial release of pressed disks. Like any studio/distributor, one is willing to let go of some things if they are getting titles of high interest. WB has released several titles that I have collected now, and with the pressed disks being available on many of them and the quality of the releases, I can handle the same type of pricing as some CBS titles (especially with regular discouting to alleviate some of the cost). I mostly only order from WB directly since that is the best way to get pressed disks. And while titles don't always seem to come out fast enough, I have confidence that they will eventually come out, and will continue to support them as releases are announced (my Tarzan season 2 order is in).
     
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  12. smithbrad

    smithbrad Screenwriter

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    Agreed, the conservative approach by CBS regarding music has been a setback for several releases. Hopefully, they have or are learning their lesson in that regard. But at that same time, the CBS releases that have been remastered for HD (and downscaled for DVD) are some of the best visually appealing releases I have. The Cheyenne, Sugarfoot, and FBI WB releases are no comparison to Gunsmoke, Perry Mason, and Bonanza, at least to my viewing on my system. So the best of both worlds would be to have all releases follow WB's approach to music and CBS's approach to remastering in HD.
     
  13. Gary OS

    Gary OS Producer

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    Bingo on that point, Brad. For all of CBS' mistakes the one thing they've gotten right (when they wanted to) was the HD transfer. I'm still not sure what happened with Rawhide S4, and that admittedly still sticks in my craw. And I'd dearly love to see them go back and remaster the first 3 seasons of HGWT and release them. But that's probably pie in the sky thinking at this point.


    Gary "if any b/w show in the CBS family has a chance of continuing and completing its run it's Gunsmoke" O.
     
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  14. smithbrad

    smithbrad Screenwriter

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    Considering that neither Rawhide S4 or Bonanza S2 received the HD mastering treatment and both were released within one month of each other, it is fairly obvious they were under the same decision making. Since the most common complaints by fans are cost and delays it would seem to me that CBS made the mistake of listening to the fans for once and released sooner than later (they obviously weren't going to change the pricing strategy). Short-term that made some happy, but unfortunately long-term we have to live with a lesser product. At least they listened again and went back to the normal HD mastering going forward.

    My guess is that they will go back and fix the error in judgement since those seasons (including HGWT seasons 1 through 3) are of no use in future HD syndication. But since the releases are out they probably are in no hurry. The chances of fixed DVD's is probably slim, but a future Blu-ray release with new HD masters for those seasons I think would be very plausable. Only time will tell.
     
  15. Jack P

    Jack P Producer

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    THey could also follow the "Hawaii Five-O" precedent of putting remastered versions of earlier non-remastered seasons in a "complete series" set as is happening with S10 of FIve-O (the only reason why I'm eventually going to get that).
     
  16. smithbrad

    smithbrad Screenwriter

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    True, they could. Interestingly, Hawaii Five-O season ten came out ten months before the previously mentioned Bonanza and Rawhide seasons that had the same fate. It could be it was the start of this bad decision making of non-remastering. So that is a precedence for a redo on DVD by including it in a complete series set. I didn't think of that one. Obviously, the best option is to just re-release the newly remastered seasons on DVD, but that could cause confusion between what is out there and people clamoring for a replacement program. I think most would just be willing to rebuy the redo seasons. I just can't see them doing that though, so the complete series approach is probably the most likely scenario going forward.

    That would be an interesting decision for me regarding Rawhide. To rebuy five seasons to get two redo's and one I don't really want. However, it could be an easy call for HGWT since that would only be replacing two seasons to get three better quality seasons. In the end, I'd probably just wait for replacements in a potential Blu-ray set instead.
     
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  17. EdG

    EdG Stunt Coordinator

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    Well I have thought about purchasing Bonanza and HGWT but I have a feeling at some point the whole series for each will get remastered at some point so I have held off. Bonanza S2 says on the syndication bible website "Season 2 is not in HD at this time" so I assume that means they will remaster it in the future. If CBS does get into rereleasing their classic tv shows for Blu-ray I hope they give buyers an option of buying a complete series of shows they have completely remastered for HD like Image did with Dick Van Dyke and Twilight Zone. This way there was the option of buying either the complete show or individual seasons without wondering if they would be completed in blu-ray.
     
  18. smithbrad

    smithbrad Screenwriter

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    While they could since the "heavy lifting" aspect will already be done, There is the difference that Dick van Dyke and Twilight Zone were only five seasons each, whereas Gunsmoke and Bonanza are 20 and 14 seasons respectively. So the cost to the consumer for such large sets would put it out of reach for many (e.g., on sale $700 for Gunsmoke, $500 for Bonanza). And I'm guessing Image did a single run of disk manufacturing for each season and just prepared some to be distributed single and other as a set. CBS may not want to commit to the cost of manufacturing either a small run for complete sets or a large run for all seasons at one time. I'm guessing they will come out individually with four or so releases a year so most can buy it over time. But who knows, we will just have to wait and see.
     
  19. EdG

    EdG Stunt Coordinator

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    Brad you have a good point about the large expense of a complete series. A lot of their classic shows did run more than 5 seasons. Either way it would be costly for me as the CBS library has most of my "must have" shows.
     
  20. Steve...O

    Steve...O Producer

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    Good points all in previous posts. I do have blu ray and generally buy the BD over the DVD where feasible but as much as I would love to have certain CBS/P series in BD the thing that causes me pause is the potential pricing. The Classic 39 Honeymooners set has been stuck on $120 at Amazon ($130 MSRP) for quite some time and even allowing for a Costco pricing of perhaps $70 to $80 that adds up very quickly for multi season shows. For example, if the rumored I Love Lucy release happens you're getting into the hundreds very quickly for the complete run (assuming it ever makes it past S1).

    CBS/P's successes have, in my opinion, dwarfed their missteps. This isn't to say their missteps haven't been annoying. The aforementioned unremastered seasons of certain series, the Odd Couple edits, the lack of English subtitles for many of their earlier releases and, most irritating to me: the My Three Sons debacle. I would have been "in" for all 12 seasons but the replacement backscore kept me away. I agree with the above poster that the commercial failure of this series was partially self inflicted. Ditto to Cannon. Then again, they did a great job with the S1 of Barnaby Jones and it reportedly tanked.

    The upside to the potential slowdown from CBS/P is that I can go back and catch up on series that I couldn't afford when all the other series were coming out :)
     
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