HTF UMD REVIEW: Family Guy 5-disc UMD boxset, Seasons 1 & 2

Discussion in 'Gaming' started by David Galindo, Dec 8, 2005.

  1. David Galindo

    David Galindo Screenwriter

    Mar 30, 2003
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    [c]Family Guy: Seasons 1 & 2 (5-disc UMD)
    Region 1 • NR • Dolby Digital • Available Now


    The very first TV on UMD boxset...but how does it turn out? Freakin’ sweet.

    Thoughts on the TV Show

    Family Guy is something of a phenomenon. Not that I need to say anything more, since obviously if you’ve never heard of Family Guy then you’re not reading this review.

    I wasn’t too keen on Family Guy to begin seemed too out of focus and disjointed to really make me laugh...but the series has since grown on me. The show is at its best when the jokes roll into the plot nice and smooth, but it’s a bit off kilter when the show completely halts for a cult television/commercial/movie throwback. It doesn’t use the opportunity for a joke, it simply puts Peter or any of the Family Guy characters in the throwback, runs for a few seconds, and then jumps back into the show. True, the whole purpose of this is to warrant a, “Hey, I remember that movie/commercial/TV show!” but it It’s like a setup without the punchline.

    Still, Family Guy has its moments. And boy, can those moments be absolutely hilarious. Included in this 5-disc UMD set are 28 episodes. The shows with an asterisk have commentary tracks.

    Disc 1
    Death Has a Shadow*
    I Never Met the Dead Man
    Chitty Chitty Death Bang
    Mind Over Murder
    A Hero Sits Next Door
    The Son Also Draws*

    Disc 2
    Brian: Portrait of a Dog
    Peter, Peter, Caviar Eater*
    Holy Crap*
    Brian in Love
    Love Thy Trophy

    Disc 3
    Death is a Bitch
    The King is Dead
    I Am Peter, Hear Me Roar
    If I'm Dyin', I'm Lyin'
    Running Mates
    A Picture Is Worth 1,000 Bucks

    Disc 4
    Fifteen Minutes of Shame*
    Road to Rhode Island
    Let's Go to the Hop*
    Dammit Janet!
    There's Something About Paulie
    He's Too Sexy for His Fat*

    Disc 5
    E. Peterbus Unum
    The Story on Page 1
    Wasted Talent
    Fore, Father
    Behind the Scenes
    Previews for Office Space & Napoleon Dynamite

    We got some winners and slight misses in the set, but they all have some great moments.

    Video Quality

    While the video transfer looks great in it's 4:3 ratio (meaning you can zoom in, stretch the screen, or have black bars on the sides to preserve the original ratio), the picture for Family Guy is a bit aliased. It was a problem in the DVDs, and it’s a problem here.

    However, the colors are sharp and vibrant, and the black levels are right on the money. The menus especially look sharp on the PSP screen. Aside from the aliasing, Family Guy looks very nice, and certainly a step up from other Fox UMDs.


    Audio Quality

    The audio is nice and loud thankfully, again unlike some of Fox’s previous releases. The commentaries also have the same amount of volume. The few instances of stereo separation for effects sound great, and it does a great job of bringing Family Guy to life on the PSP.



    Aside from the internet promos that are missing on this UMD set, we get all of the extras from the DVDs, including the commentaries on seven shows. There’s also a Behind the Scenes Featurette (4:41) that’s OK, but nothing special. There are subtitles for all of the shows, as well as previews for Napoleon Dynamite and Office Space.

    You know, what surprises me is the price. You can find this set for $30 at stores like Best Buy and Target. Considering that $30 a couple of months ago got you a two hour movie with no bonus features on UMD, vs. the $30 you’re spending on this set with over six hundred minutes of Family Guy AND extras, it’s safe to say you’re getting quite a bargain here, no? Man, its incredible how fast UMDs are evolving to catch up to DVDs, isn’t it?

    What I don’t care for is the packaging. There is a cardboard slipcover that holds a fold out cardboard case with foam glued to the walls. Cut into the foam are the UMDs, which will fall out if you’re not using the cardboard slipcover. Fox also neglected to add an insert or print on the inside case any of the disc if you’re looking for your favorite episode, you’ll just have to search for it (or print out this wonderfully detailed Eh??). While I am thankful we didn’t get five UMD cases shrinkwrapped together like the 2-disc HBO sets, surely there is a better way of packaging UMDs than this.

    Still, considering we got everything but the internet promos on this UMD boxset, I couldn’t be happier. Kudos for Fox not completely shortchanging UMD customers like so many other companies have done. I’ll take this over a “sampler” any day. (*cough* Paramount *cough*)



    This is the first major boxset on UMD, and the results are fantastic. While HBO has churned out some great 2-disc boxsets like Da Ali G Show and Entourage, this 5-disc collection is quite a deal.

    I never picked up Family Guy on DVD simply because I knew I wouldn’t have enough time to watch it because of work, school, etc. Such is the beauty of UMD, as I can watch it wherever I have some spare time.

    If this is how Fox will be doing their TV shows on UMD, then I cannot wait to see more releases from them. Highly recommended.


    IGN Conversion:
    The Show: 7/10
    The Video: 8.5/10
    The Audio: 8.5/10
    The Extras: 9/10
    Overall: 9/10
    Editor’s Choice? Yes
  2. Dean C

    Dean C Second Unit

    Jul 28, 2005
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    Yes, I did pick this set up. Thanks for the review.

    Great show. ITs even cheaper than buying it on DVD.
  3. David Galindo

    David Galindo Screenwriter

    Mar 30, 2003
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    Yeah, crazy eh? Hopefully all UMDs will follow the cheaper prices. [​IMG]

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