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DVD Reviews

HTF REVIEW: The Simpsons Season Six



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#1 of 130 MarkHughes

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Posted August 10 2005 - 03:37 PM

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The Simpsons
The Complete Sixth Season


Release Date:
August 16, 2005

Running Time: 575 minutes

Sound:English Dolby Digital 5.1, Spanish Dolby Stereo, & French Dolby Stereo

Subtitles:English & Spanish

Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1 (original intended display)

This is an approved GUEST review for Home Theater Forum

Episodes Guide: Disc 1: Bart Of Darkness (09-04-94), Lisa's Rival (09-11-94), Another Simpson Clip Show (09-25-94), Itchy & Scratchyland (10-02-94), Sideshow Bob Roberts (10-09-94), Treehouse Of Horror V (10-30-94), 7. Bart's Girlfriend (11-06-94) Disc 2: Lisa On Ice (11-13-94), Homer Badman (11-27-94), Grandpa vs. Sexual Inadequacy (12-04-94), Fear Of Flying (12-18-94), Homer The Great (01-08-95), And Maggie Makes Three (01-22-95), Bart's Comet (02-05-95) Disc 3: Homie The Clown (02-12-95), Bart vs. Australia (02-19-95), Homer vs. Patty And Selma (02-26-95), A Star Is Burns (03-05-95), Lisa's Wedding (03-19-95), Two Dozen And One Greyhounds (04-09-95), The PTA Disbands (04-16-95) Disc 4: Round Springfield (04-30-95), Springfield Connection (05-07-95), Lemon Of Troy (05-14-95), Who Shot Mr. Burns? (Part 1) (05-21-95)


The Episodes: Having been a fan of the Simpsons since the airing of the first episode, I find myself quite biased when discussing the quality of each show. Further, since my task is to review this as a collection, I will continue to refrain from reviewing the quality of each individual episode. I will add that this season is the personal favorite of creator, Matt Groening, as he states in some of the commentaries.

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Video: I viewed this collection from 2 different sources. First I used my home theater, which includes the BenQ PE8700+ DLP projector and 92” 16x9 Carada High Contrast Grey screen. I watched the DVDs on the 4:3 setting. (I won’t lie and say that I didn’t peek at the picture using the stretch mode, but the quality wasn’t worth discussing as the presentation wasn’t intended to be stretched or seen in this setting). Needless to say, the transfer on this sized display was somewhat distorted, had lots of shadowing, and had some imperfections that are less noticeable on a smaller display. (Maybe they will give us all that full length feature film someday that they have been discussing for years and then we can enjoy our favorite dysfunctional family on larger scale displays!) The second display that I used was a 45” 4:3 Mitsubishi Projection Television. This was a far better experience in terms of clarity. While there were some distortions in color and some imperfections in the sharpness of the image, it didn’t take away from the enjoyable experience of watching these episodes. This set still has a quality transfer considering the original display in 1995. As I have always said, you can’t expect Blue Sky CGI quality when the original presentation was hand drawn art. Further, I am sure that in 1995, the thought of watching the Simpsons on a 92” display was only a dream (I know it was for me!).
Posted ImagePosted ImagePosted Image {3 out of 5}

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Audio: As has been the case in each of the season’s DVD sets, the audio in this set is magnificent. The thunderous bass sounds and dynamics in the opening theme sequences make for an outstanding audiophile experience. Further, the center channel distribution in the 5.1 Surround Sound presentations makes for a clearer understanding of what is being said during the episode’s dialogues. When listening through the traditional 2.0 stereo sound television, the tracks maintain their original quality.
Posted ImagePosted ImagePosted ImagePosted ImagePosted Image {a perfect 5 out of 5}


Menu: These menus are fantastic. Anyone who has read my previous reviews will know that I have been very critical of the menus in past releases. So, this time I will simply say that they are easy to navigate. They are not cluttered with unnecessary art. They are not too empty. And finally, they have “play all” options in all the right places.

Posted ImagePosted ImagePosted ImagePosted ImagePosted Image{a perfect 5 out of 5}

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Extras: This set has plenty of extras. As always, there is a commentary on each episode. The commentaries are the same types that have been in each of the last five sets; interesting, informative, but very very dry in humor. However, I was surprised that there weren’t more guest commentators, since this season was so packed full of guest stars. The commentators clean up their act a little bit this time around, while some of the commentaries in past seasons have had some PG-13 language uses and references, this time, I heard nothing that I would consider “non-family oriented”. Some of the other extras that can be found in this set are picture-in-picture art and animation storyboards, a clip on the Simpsons airplane, and the final cliff hanger episode, Who Shot Mr. Burns (part one) can be viewed in any one of 4 languages; Parisian French, Czech, Castilian Spanish, and Russian (this is in addition to the standard offerings of English, Spanish, and French). There is also a full length feature called “Springfield’s Most Wanted.” This is a parody of America’s Most Wanted and is hosted by John Walsh. It focuses on catching the fugitive who shot Mr. Burns. But, as always, my favorite extra is the deleted scenes. Deleted scenes are one of the first things I look for when I purchase a new DVD and this one contains deleted scenes from nearly each episode. You can either watch the scenes one at a time as they were edited out or you can also watch the episode with the scenes placed back in. Either way, I love having scenes that I have never seen before.
I now need to get back on the “play all” soapbox and thank FOX for hearing my request.
In each of my previous reviews, I complained that the viewer couldn’t watch all of the deleted scenes in a row. The viewer would have to go episode by episode and select the deleted scenes for the individual episode. Well, thank you FOX, you can now go to the extras and select the “Play All Deleted Scenes” option. In fact, you can get them with or without commentary. Finally, no Simpsons season set would be complete without the guide that comes in the sleeve of the packaging. This guide, set up to look like a police case file, tells you a little bit about each episode, what it has for extras, and who worked on the project. If you keep it near you while viewing the discs, it also explains what features are hidden in each episode as you watch. Overall a great set of extras in this package.
Posted ImagePosted ImagePosted Image {3 out of 5}

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Overall Rating: This is a must have for any Simpsons fan and I highly recommend it. As I always throw in some form of criticism, this time I will point out the packaging (after all, I choose to believe that my “play-all” harping worked). I love the police file theme that accents the season ending cliff hanger, but it seems that they have decided to move away from the uniformed shape and style that they have been using for the packaging of the previous 5 seasons. This causes issues with the avid collector as it makes for an uneasy time when storing it on a shelf. With that said, the box is pretty interesting. It is a plastic three-dimensional box of homers head and the actual discs are stored in a book-styled case rather than the previous fold out. I do like this aspect better. So, I guess you take the good with the bad. But, why not the basic square box with the book-style insert? That would be perfect. To end on a positive, this marks the third season box set to come out in just over a year. This is markedly better than the previous one every 12 months. I am not sure what has attributed to such a timing change, but it’s a great one. Anything that can be done to get more product in less time is fine by me. And on top of it all, this season didn’t seem to lose anything in terns of quality. Again, this is a must have.
Posted ImagePosted ImagePosted ImagePosted Image {4 out of 5}
Peace, Love, and Homer Simpson to Y'all!!!

--M

Mark's Movie CollectionThe King of Loop Holes !!!

#2 of 130 Wezzo

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Posted August 10 2005 - 05:27 PM

Great review! Thankily-dank.

#3 of 130 AnthonyC

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Posted August 10 2005 - 06:50 PM

Quote:
In each of my previous reviews, I complained that the viewer couldn’t watch all of the deleted scenes in a row. The viewer would have to go episode by episode and select the deleted scenes for the individual episode. Well, thank you FOX, you can now go to the extras and select the “Play All Deleted Scenes” option.

Actually, disc 4 of season 5 allows you to do this.

Great review. As for the packaging, you can call a 1-888 number to get the original style box--I did earlier today and it's shipping on Tuesday. Posted Image

#4 of 130 MarcoBiscotti

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Posted August 10 2005 - 11:32 PM

Anthony, can you give us more info on this alternate box offer?

Thanks!

#5 of 130 Jason_V

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Posted August 11 2005 - 04:35 AM

Anthony...you serious??? I think the head boxes are inspired but they're going to stick out like sore thumbs on my shelf next to the first five regular boxes.

#6 of 130 AnthonyC

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Posted August 11 2005 - 04:46 AM

There will be an insert with a 1-888 number you can call, or you can call in advance. I already did, it's free and no proof of purchase is required. It ships next Tuesday.

1-888-223-2369

#7 of 130 Nathan*W

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Posted August 11 2005 - 05:02 AM

Mark, there are broken links in your review. And yes, although review copies didn't mention it, there is an insert in production copies that give the 888 number that Anthony listed in order to receive a standard box.
 

#8 of 130 TravisR

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Posted August 11 2005 - 06:53 AM

I just called the 888 number and they told me that you need to send them the receipt as proof of purchase. Not a big deal, I'll just wait until I actually buy the set and either have the receipt to mail them or have the insert that says what is (and isn't) needed for the box.

Although it's possible that I was just dealing with someone who didn't know what the hell they were doingPosted Image

#9 of 130 John*D

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Posted August 11 2005 - 08:24 AM

They told me to mail them the receipt. I'll have to do that after I purchase the set next week or whenever I get it.

They also said there might be a S/H cost, but they weren't sure yet. They would call to let me know?

Wah??????????????????

Posted Image Ship it to me for FREE!



I like the heads, but I want to keep it like it was before, changing things mid-stream is dumb. At least we'll have the option of getting the old style.

#10 of 130 Seth--L

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Posted August 11 2005 - 04:21 PM

There will be an insert with a 1-888 number you can call, or you can call in advance. I already did, it's free and no proof of purchase is required. It ships next Tuesday.


So I guess this will be the first and only season with the head boxes.
Well - There it is.
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#11 of 130 TravisR

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Posted August 11 2005 - 05:45 PM

Quote:
So I guess this will be the first and only season with the head boxes.


I suppose that's possible but there's already cover art for the other four family members for the Seasons Seven to Ten sets. I think the replacement box is just to placate pissed off fans and they intend to continue with the heads.

#12 of 130 Seth--L

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Posted August 11 2005 - 11:32 PM

but there's already cover art for the other four family members for the Seasons Seven to Ten sets.


But it hasn't been manufactured yet.
Well - There it is.
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#13 of 130 Casey Trowbridg

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Posted August 12 2005 - 04:39 AM

Thanks for the review, I will pick this up on street date, and I may look in to getting the alternate packaging.

#14 of 130 Andrew Bunk

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Posted August 12 2005 - 06:54 AM

Well my insert has the wrong number on it. It says 1-800-223-2369. I called and it was obvious they've heard from people already cause the girl said right away that I should call 888 instead. Man it's gonna get worse for them come Tuesday!
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#15 of 130 Andrew Bunk

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Posted August 12 2005 - 06:57 AM

UPDATE: I just called and the lady told me I should call Tuesday when it's available in stores. No biggie. She also said there is supposed ot be a site for all the details: www.simpsonsbox.com.
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#16 of 130 Vince Maskeeper

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Posted August 12 2005 - 08:11 PM

I'm wondering if when 75% of buyers request the replacement box they'll realize what a retarded idea this was.

fingers crossed.

-V
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#17 of 130 Brandon Conway

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Posted August 12 2005 - 08:47 PM

Full details about the alternate box are available HERE .

Most people - the majority that don't visit the HTF and such places - well, these people will not call the number. They won't care, because they just want to watch some funny shows.

"And now the reprimand, from an American critic. He reproaches me for using film as a sacred & lasting medium, like a painting or a book. He does not believe that filmmaking is an inferior art, but he believes, and quite rightly, that a reel goes quickly, that the public are looking above all for relaxation, that film is fragile and that it is pretentious to express the power of one's soul by such ephemeral and delicate means, that Charlie Chaplin's or Buster Keaton's first films can only be seen on very rare and badly spoiled prints. I add that the cinema is making daily progress and that eventually films that we consider marvelous today will soon be forgotten because of new dimensions & colour. This is true. But for 4 weeks this film [The Blood of a Poet] has been shown to audiences that have been so attentive, so eager & so warm, that I wonder after all there is not an anonymous public who are looking for more than relaxation in the cinema." - Jean Cocteau, 1932


#18 of 130 Daniel-M

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Posted August 12 2005 - 11:50 PM

Quote:
I'm wondering if when 75% of buyers request the replacement box they'll realize what a retarded idea this was.


I hope. People i have talked to says the box isn't very good at all

#19 of 130 MarkHughes

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Posted August 13 2005 - 03:16 AM

I think the box will do well with the average Joe buying the set because they like the simpsons. That would be the average Joe who doesn't have 6 shelves holding more than 500 DVDs (know anyone like that? LOL) But for those of us who are into collecting and maintaining order to our collections the box is an annoying inconvenience. So, I am not so sure that they will receive the volume of calls asking for the old-style box. I bet most will just simply not be bothered to call and switch. It will be us, the anal retentive collectors, who will be calling and swapping. And while we hate to believe it, I still think we make up a small percentage of the people who will be buying these sets on the mass market.
Peace, Love, and Homer Simpson to Y'all!!!

--M

Mark's Movie CollectionThe King of Loop Holes !!!

#20 of 130 Mike*SC

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Posted August 13 2005 - 03:57 AM

Quote:
I'm wondering if when 75% of buyers request the replacement box they'll realize what a retarded idea this was.


If this number comes close to 5%, I think it would be pretty shocking.


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