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"Leave It To Beaver: Season 1" -- A Personal Review

Discussion in 'TV on DVD and Blu-ray' started by David Von Pein, Nov 23, 2005.

  1. David Von Pein

    David Von Pein Producer

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    Shame on you, Mike! Such foul-mouthed language! I'm sending you to Mrs. Rayburn's office post-haste...and you can have a taste of her automatic "spanking machine" for your attitude! So there! [​IMG]
     
  2. David Von Pein

    David Von Pein Producer

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    A private seller is providing an ALL-SIX-SEASONS COLLECTION of LITB on DVD-R. Plus extras, including a couple of things I'd love to see Universal Studios also make available via a future mainstream seasonal boxed set of the series......
    >>> Leave It To Beaver U.S. Savings Bonds Public Service Announcement, with Jerry Mathers, Hugh Beaumont, Barbara Billingsley, and Tony Dow. Beaver is saving his money for a bike in the story line. Run Time of approx. 16 minutes. It was put out by the Army for US Savings Bonds and was shown in public schools across the USA but never on television.
    >>> LEAVE IT TO BEAVER 1982 REUNION--SUPER RARE! .... This is an extremely-rare television collectible. In 1982, the LITB cast reunited for the first time on a local Los Angeles magazine-style TV show. Never broadcast nationally, this was probably the last television appearance of Hugh Beaumont (who passed away within months of this reunion, on May 14, 1982). Richard Deacon would also be gone within the next two years ("Deac" died in August of 1984).
    This unique "Reunion" broadcast consists of film clips from the original series, plus new skits and interviews. Among the topics discussed, Jerry Mathers talks about the rumors of him dying in Vietnam; and Ken Osmond relates how many people mistook him for a porn star. It is believed that this charming reunion was the impetus for the TV movie and the new series that followed. The running time for this show is 12 minutes and the audio and video quality is pretty good. Broadcast in color (but some portions are in B&W).
    ---------------
    Those two items above would make ideal featurettes on a future LITB Universal set. Plus a few Purina Dog Chow cast commercials, to boot. [​IMG]
    Footnote -- It's probably best if you'd disregard the odd blurb that appears near the bottom of that E-Bay webpage re. that Beaver Mega-Set, which states: "Leave it to Beaver is the 2nd longest running TV show in history..."
    [​IMG] What the h....?? That "2nd Longest" remark is not even close to being accurate re. the LITB series. I guess the seller tossed that false info in there to pump up the product a bit more. Curious. (And the odd fact that each of those DVD-Rs is labelled as a "Tape" rather than a "Disc" wouldn't make me smile either if I were desperate enough to shell out the greenbacks to purchase that particular item. [​IMG])
     
  3. David Von Pein

    David Von Pein Producer

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    Some of these LITB "Trading Cards" would make a nice bonus item in future Beaver collections as well...... [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  4. Carlos Garcia

    Carlos Garcia Screenwriter

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    David, some of those DVD extras look very interesting, particularly the 12 min TV reunion interview from 1982, and the 16 min US Savings Bonds promo. However, they're hardly worth the $599 asking price that ebay pirate is asking for. It would be great if one day these extras would find their way onto future Beaver sets, as well as season sets of Still The Beaver/The New Leave It To Beaver.
     
  5. David Von Pein

    David Von Pein Producer

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    Yeah...that price is highway robbery of the first order. No question about that fact. Especially when comparing it to the $210 price tag that I'll end up paying for the six top-quality and officially-licensed LITB complete-season sets via Universal. (This assumes that all six seasons will be made available eventually -- which they will be without question IMO -- and priced the same as S.1.)

    That E-Bay robbery is pert-near as bad as the five-season $799 price for the "Ottoman" collection of "The Dick Van Dyke Show" (a set that will probably never get released, however).
     
  6. Kipp Teague

    Kipp Teague Stunt Coordinator

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    Regarding the original LITB pilot, "It's a Small World," WTBS aired this on October 4, 1987...thirty years to the day after the premiere of the series on CBS television. Two days prior, the surviving cast had appeared on Good Morning America. They likely made several other TV appearances as well in commemoration of the series' 30th anniversary.
     
  7. David Von Pein

    David Von Pein Producer

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    Note Re. The "SDH English Subtitles" For "Leave It To Beaver: The Complete First Season" .........
    These subtitles are very nicely done, with all dialogue written out verbatim on screen (plus even references to background sounds and ambient noises -- e.g., "Footsteps Approaching" and "Phone Continues To Ring").
    Many times, DVD subtitles are not word-for-word accounts of the show/movie at all. I watched one recently where a long quote was reduced to just three words via the subtitles. You won't find such "condensed" subtitling on the LITB S.1 set. Every "Uh" and "Huh" and "Gee, Dad" is represented here. [​IMG]
     
  8. David Von Pein

    David Von Pein Producer

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    LITB Trivia For Today.........
    I just noted via the sparklingly-clear ending credits on the S.1 DVDs from Universal that the "Assistant Director" on many of the LITB episodes was Hilton A. Green .... the same Mr. Green who was Asst. Director for the film "Psycho", and who pops up on a DVD documentary every now and again (such as on the "Psycho" DVD and the newer 2005 DVD of "Alfred Hitchcock Presents: Season 1").
    --------
    "Well, dear, a married man being neat is like running for a bus after you've caught it." -- Ward Cleaver in "Cleaning Up Beaver" [​IMG]
     
  9. Jesse Skeen

    Jesse Skeen Producer

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    Haven't picked this up yet- what do they put in the Spanish subtitles for "Gee, Wally"?
     
  10. Dave Scarpa

    Dave Scarpa Producer

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    Does anyone else feel the Forced trailers on this release is completely inappropriate? I just rented then from Netflix (on DVD-9's no Less. I mean trailers for Focus Films and Horror TV Shows? I'm glad I have no Kids to show these to.
     
  11. David Von Pein

    David Von Pein Producer

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  12. David Von Pein

    David Von Pein Producer

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    Another scene and hunk o' dialogue I'd never seen or heard prior to these DVDs......
    In the episode "Brotherly Love", Ward says to The June-ster:
    "June, a man's head has always been softer than a woman's heart." [​IMG]
     
  13. James RD

    James RD Supporting Actor

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    That one was also new to me. Interesting how Ward's character is rapidly developing into the calm, thoughtful Dad rather than a bit of an over-the-top hothead of the first episodes. Must have been the tranquilizers.
     
  14. Mike Frezon

    Mike Frezon Moderator
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  15. David Von Pein

    David Von Pein Producer

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    I recently discovered this promotional photo (below) of the Cleaver gang. It's a Christmas promo pic. Unfortunately, however, there was never a Christmas-themed episode of "Leave It To Beaver" made (despite the fact that there were six opportunities in which to film one during the series' half-a-dozen years on the air).
    But the writers always remained neutral as to the time of year it was on the show, with no holiday episodes being done, period. It's almost always warm weather, in fact, throughout the whole series...with the boys never, ever bundling up in heavy coats and/or gloves. (But from references made during some episodes, we know that "Mayfield" is not in California.)
    The lack of any Christmas episodes is a bit of a shame IMO -- because a nice, heart-warming Christmas program would suit LITB perfectly. -- We could have Ward out on a ladder outside their 485 Mapleton Drive home as he expertly and adeptly decks the whole outside of the house in an array of Christmas lights. ... June, adorned in her special red-and-green Christmas apron and holiday pearls, is in the kitchen, baking gobs of Christmas cookies and other goodies . ... And Wally & The Beaver are hanging up their stockings in front of the fireplace. ...
    Then, Fred Rutherford comes over and informs Ward that he and Ward have to work at the "Salt Mines" on Christmas Eve (similar to the plot of "Christmas And The Hard-Luck Kid" on Mary Tyler Moore's series in 1970).
    This news upsets the family very much, naturally. But Ward's devotion to his (mysterious) job is unwavering. But, after leaving for the office on Tuesday, December 24th, 1957, to work feverishly on the all-important "Frederickson Land Deal", Ward is soon back home just an hour later with an extra batch of perfectly-wrapped Christmas presents for his family. Beaver got a pair of skates; Wally got a sled; June got a picture book, yellow, blue, and red. [​IMG]
    The episode fades out with the Cleavers gathered around the hearth (a la The Waltons in "The Homecoming"), with everyone very happy that Ward is back home to share Christmas Eve with his loving clan.
    (The epilogue has Eddie Haskell suddenly bursting through the Cleaver's front door yelling "Mr. Cleaver! Come quick! Your house is on fire! You wired the house with REAL candles and your garage is ablaze, you stupid idiot!")
    Well, maybe we'll have to amend that shocking epilogue after all. Ya think? [​IMG]
    Merry Christmas to the Cleavers! [​IMG] .....
    [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  16. Mike Frezon

    Mike Frezon Moderator
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  17. David Von Pein

    David Von Pein Producer

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  18. Mike Frezon

    Mike Frezon Moderator
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  19. David Von Pein

    David Von Pein Producer

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    Something else for you to watch out for next week, Mike, when you get your Beaver ....... Watch for an "alternate take" of one line of dialogue by Ward during the pre-show "Preview" clip on "The Perfect Father" episode. Ward's line "By the way, it's regulation" (referring to the new basketball Ward just purchased for the lads) is a different version from what's inside the actual episode (and a different camera angle as well).

    The above totally-useless hunk of triviality brought you to by ..... "Flower Of The Orient" perfume, the famous love secret of ancient Persia. 24-pack carton for just $3.98. Thanks...and Godspeed.
     
  20. Mike Frezon

    Mike Frezon Moderator
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    My eyes and ears will be peeled.
     

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