- May 14, 2004
"Goooooood Eeeeeveningggggg Ladies and Gentlemen!"--Alfred Hitchcock.
Well it would seem that Universal Studios Home Entertainment will be (finally) making available the first landmark season of the long running ALFRED HITCHCOCK PRESENTS (CBS 1955-60, NBC 1960-62) sometime in 2005 at least according to our resident authorities back at TV Shows on DVD.
There were an astounding 268 half-hour black-and-white episodes set before the cameras certainly making ALFRED HITCHCOCK PRESENTS the longest running dramatic anthology tv series ever produced.
Later highly acclaimed efforts such as THE TWILIGHT ZONE (CBS 1959-64), BORIS KARLOFF'S THRILLER (NBC 1960-62) and THE OUTER LIMITS (ABC 1963-65) owe everything to this show which set the standards of an omnipresent celebrity host providing ironic and wry humour commentary, outstanding guest-stars of renown showcased on a weekly basis (practically everybody who ever worked in Hollywood appeared on this extraordinary tv series) and consistently well-written and expertly executed presentations.
Unlike THE TWILIGHT ZONE, ALFRED HITCHCOCK PRESENTS made the transition into the hour length format as THE ALFRED HITCHCOCK HOUR (CBS 1962-64, NBC 1964-65) with the greatest of ease maintaining the selfsame high and exacting standards of the earlier half hour tv series and resulting in another 93 episodes produced.
Hey! That's more episodes than are to be found on STAR TREK (NBC 1966-69) for Pete's sake!
Of course the best part of this televsion classic were always those priceless prologues and epilogues featuring the all-time Master of Droll Humour and Wit himself who so wonderfully emoted on-camera which are a sheer delight to behold.
For those younger tv fans (somewhat) jaded by the all-too-numerous failed later attempts to emulate the success and quality of the ALFRED HITCHCOCK anthology tv series this initial DVD set should prove to be both an education and a refreshingly pleasant oasis from the ceaseless flow of banality and inepititude that has pathetically continued to inundate the television airwaves ever since these two tv series' cancellation after a respectable 10 year run collectively.
One thing's for certain that ALFRED HITCHCOCK PRESENTS is a bona fide adult tv show and there's absolutely nothing here to amuse the kiddies. A lack of appreciation for or interest in this (now) vintage television masterpiece only attests to a complete absense of good taste and sophistication.
One interesting observation to be made here is that when this tv series first commenced in the mid-1950s it had a decidedly light touch to the stories depicted but as it progressed toward the early 1960s the show (gradually) took on a much darker and scarier tone almost reflecting the (possible) mindset of the Master of Suspense himself which would culminate and reach a zenith in the production of PSYCHO (1960) arguably the most terrifying film ever made.
The Funeral March of a Marionette (Click Here).
BRING ON ALFRED HITCHCOCK PRESENTS TO DVD!!!!!