1. We've brought back the dark theme, check it out here: https://www.hometheaterforum.com/community/threads/the-htf-dark-theme-is-back-for-premium-members.353892/#post-4518110
    Dismiss Notice

"Leave It To Beaver: The Complete Series" -- A Personal Review

Discussion in 'TV on DVD and Blu-ray' started by David Von Pein, Jun 29, 2010.

  1. TravisR

    TravisR Studio Mogul

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2004
    Messages:
    29,158
    Likes Received:
    5,784
    Trophy Points:
    9,110
    Location:
    The basement of the FBI building
    I'd go with Leave It To Beaver since you'd need all the laughs you can get if you're stranded on an island.
     
  2. smithb

    smithb Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2008
    Messages:
    1,536
    Likes Received:
    3
    Trophy Points:
    0

    Good point. While these are both very very high on my list, I would have to go with a write-in candidate, the first 5 seasons of the Andy Griffith show. Of course this could be related to two nights ago catching the biography of Don Knott's on TV bringing back a lot of fond memories.
     
  3. Joe Lugoff

    Joe Lugoff Cinematographer

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2005
    Messages:
    2,162
    Likes Received:
    300
    Trophy Points:
    1,610
    Real Name:
    Joe

    Ugh is right .... I HATE when that happens.


    When I'm typing a long response, I copy it and save it on Notepad or something, just in case it gets lost in cyberspace.


    Gary, I once asked you this same question, and you did say it would be a very tough call. I agree, but if forced to choose, I'd go with "Father," as I said above.
     
  4. smithb

    smithb Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2008
    Messages:
    1,536
    Likes Received:
    3
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I have to say, this TV side of the forum is so much more like the shows it discusses. Whether it be LITB or FKB there is a calming influence here unlike the BD Movie forum where everyone is in an uproar about current releases and what is good an bad about them. Sure, there's an occasional disagreement here but it never seems to get out-of-hand like over there.


    So whenever I go over there and get all riled up I always come back here to calm down before logging off. I just need to use a bit of constraint and stay away from that side of the forum.
     
  5. TravisR

    TravisR Studio Mogul

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2004
    Messages:
    29,158
    Likes Received:
    5,784
    Trophy Points:
    9,110
    Location:
    The basement of the FBI building
    ^ SAY THE PREDATOR BLU-RAY IS TERRIBLE OR BE BANISHED!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!






    In all fairness to the BD forum, the Predator disc is the only current example of people getting really mad over a release. I think the people who are complaining about the disc are correct but I don't see the need to try to force that opinion on others who don't share it.
     
  6. smithb

    smithb Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2008
    Messages:
    1,536
    Likes Received:
    3
    Trophy Points:
    0
     
  7. Mike Frezon

    Mike Frezon Moderator
    Moderator

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2001
    Messages:
    42,514
    Likes Received:
    8,003
    Trophy Points:
    9,110
    Location:
    Rensselaer, NY
     
  8. Joe Lugoff

    Joe Lugoff Cinematographer

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2005
    Messages:
    2,162
    Likes Received:
    300
    Trophy Points:
    1,610
    Real Name:
    Joe
    In real life, Gilbert (Stephen Talbot) is a real PITA. He always bad-mouthed "Beaver," along the lines of there being no black people living in Mayfield.


    His Wiki article (proving almost anyone can have a Wiki article) seems to indicate he might be more mellow about "Beaver" these days.
     
  9. David Von Pein

    David Von Pein Producer

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2002
    Messages:
    5,748
    Likes Received:
    10
    Trophy Points:
    0
    LITB REVIEW EXCERPT......


    193. "Long Distance Call" (June 16, 1962) -- Don Drysdale of the Los Angeles Dodgers makes a guest appearance. Beaver and two of his friends decide to call Drysdale in Los Angeles. But the call ends up costing a bit more than the boys were anticipating -- $9.35 (plus tax) to be exact. .... GILBERT: "Maybe we shouldn't have waited for him to get out of the shower."


    For baseball fans out there, I can offer up this unique bit of Los Angeles Dodgers trivia (as it relates--sort of--to this Leave It To Beaver installment): On the same day this LITB episode aired (Saturday, June 16, 1962), the Dodgers lost a game to the Houston Colt .45s at Dodger Stadium, 4-1, in front of a huge crowd of 51,530.


    Drysdale didn't pitch the June 16th game (Johnny Podres did), but Drysdale did start the previous game, on June 15, and lost to the Colt .45s, 2-0, even though Drysdale pitched a great game, allowing only 2 runs and 6 hits in 8 innings, with no walks and 6 strikeouts. It was just Drysdale's 4th loss of the 1962 season, compared with 10 wins.


    The Dodgers' record after their 4-1 loss to Houston on June 16, which was L.A.'s third straight defeat, was still an excellent 44-23 (.657) for the '62 season.


    Another piece of Drysdale trivia can be found in the booklet for Season 5 that's included in this DVD package. The description that Shout! Factory's Brian Ward wrote for this episode says the following (which is kind of a strange description, since this is the only thing mentioned in this episode's descriptive blurb): "Unfortunately, despite the 420-foot game-winning homer mentioned in the Cleavers' newspaper, Don Drysdale actually didn't hit a single home run for the Dodgers in 1962."


    That description is 100% correct too, as this stats page confirms.
     
  10. David Von Pein

    David Von Pein Producer

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2002
    Messages:
    5,748
    Likes Received:
    10
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Episode #212 -- "The Parking Attendants" (January 17, 1963) -- I noticed a small mistake in this episode regarding the cars owned by Ward Cleaver and Fred Rutherford -- the two cars are exactly the same, right down to the identical license plate number (WJG 865). Obviously, the producers were thinking, Who's going to notice the fact we've given Fred and Ward the exact same car and license plate?
     
  11. Gary OS

    Gary OS Producer

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2004
    Messages:
    4,753
    Likes Received:
    1,501
    Trophy Points:
    4,110
    Real Name:
    Gary
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by David Von Pein


    I'm picking up on a few things like that too, David. For instance, I noticed in the S3 episode "School Sweater" that when Wally finally goes to get his sweater pack from the predatory female (aka Frances) the home she lives in is the house right next door to the Cleavers. At least I'm pretty sure its the house right next door. They did a good job of framing the shots where you might not pick up on it, but with the added clarity it looked like the same one as we see Wally and Beaver pass as they walk down the sidewalk in the closing credits.


    I've also noticed Wally's "scar" (the line on the left side of his face) a lot more now than I used to.

    Gary "the clarity is amazing on this set" O.
     
  12. David Von Pein

    David Von Pein Producer

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2002
    Messages:
    5,748
    Likes Received:
    10
    Trophy Points:
    0
    >>> "Ah, the perils of high def LITB. We are seeing things now that none of us ever saw before."
     
  13. David Von Pein

    David Von Pein Producer

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2002
    Messages:
    5,748
    Likes Received:
    10
    Trophy Points:
    0
    >>> "I've also noticed Wally's "scar" (the line on the left side of his face) a lot more now than I used to. The clarity is amazing on this set."
     
  14. Lecagr

    Lecagr Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2009
    Messages:
    164
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0

    Both are good shows, but I'll take Leave It To Beaver over Father Knows Best. FKB is a little more on the serious side, more of a comedy/drama where in LITB what there is of drama are mostly the scenes where Ward sits down with the boys and gives them some fatherly advice. To me, the characters on LITB are much more appealing, and that goes for the secondary characters too such as Eddie, Lumpy, and some of Beaver's pals. FKB doesn't really have those regular secondary characters, it's basically the father, mother, the three kids and that's it. Plus, in my opinion LITB is the better written show, the stories on FKB are spotty where on the other hand there isn't one weak episode of LITB. FKB is not without merit, but sometimes the episodes can be slow, moody and a little dull. LITB is more lighthearted, more fun with more appealing characters and consistently good writing. These qualities are why LITB still has a strong fan base today, and likely has surpassed FKB in overall popularity.


    Who's the better TV dad, Hugh Beaumont or Robert Young? My vote goes to Hugh Beaumont. Mr. Cleaver could lay down the law, but he had a lot of love and compassion for his sons. Hugh Beaumont was superb as Mr. Cleaver and IMO he's the best TV dad. Mr. Anderson loved his family too but there's something lacking about his personality, Mr. Cleaver is the more appealing character.


    One thing though that is missing from Leave It To Beaver, in the 6 seasons and 234 shows there is not one single Christmas themed episode in the series. Very unusual for an all-american TV family like the Cleaver's to not have a Christmas episode.
     
  15. Joe Lugoff

    Joe Lugoff Cinematographer

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2005
    Messages:
    2,162
    Likes Received:
    300
    Trophy Points:
    1,610
    Real Name:
    Joe
    " ... there isn't one weak episode of LITB."


    I think that's an exaggeration.


    There is one real clunker in LITB, and that's Season 6's "The Clothing Drive." I think it was written and directed by people who didn't write or direct any other episode.


    No one in it acts like they do in any other episode. The interplay between Ward and June is especially out of character.


    And Beaver is famous for doing really stupid things, but giving away obviously new suits to charity is exceptionally stupid, especially considering he was almost in high school and not a little kid any more.


    I also think the episode where Beaver is pushing the doll carriage is a weak one. He was so embarrassed when the other boys came along, he hid the carriage. He knew no boy would ever want to be seen pushing a doll carriage.


    But then the other boys find it and take it home with them. So THEY'RE pushing it! Why didn't Beaver make fun of THEM?


    I also think the episode where he's walking around in a bunny suit showed that sometimes the writers were stuck for good ideas.


    But all in all, it has an amazingly high average of really good episodes.
     
  16. Lecagr

    Lecagr Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2009
    Messages:
    164
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    No Joe I didn't exaggerate. Out of 234 episodes, maybe a dozen or so aren't quite up to the level of the others, but still are good episodes. IMO, there's not one "clunker" in the group.


    Alrighty then! Having said that, I'm glad to report I received my LITB complete set in the mail today. The outer cardboard box is in perfect shape, no damage whatsoever. And the discs are all fastened to their hubs, no floaters inside the cases. And the episode booklets for each season are in fine shape too, no folds or creases on any of them.


    HOWEVER, I do have a few gripes about this set. As season 6 is my favorite, I wanted to check out a few of those episodes first. So I popped in disc 1 and began watching "Wally's License". At about the 2 or 3 minute mark where the family is sitting at the kitchen table, the scene cuts to June and the detail on her dress is glowing this blue, red, and purple color. MY GOD IT LOOKS TERRIBLE! Then I noticed the color is also in Ward's hair and his necktie too! I think the problem is, these episodes were restored and the image sharpened to a point where anything with a lot of fine detail is going to have this "rainbow effect". The folks who remaster black and white shows for DVD need to make sure that colors don't appear in the picture. Surely there must be a way to achieve this. I imagine this problem is prevalent thruout the DVD set, so before I watch any more episodes I'll turn off the color on my TV set first.


    Also regarding the menus, by the 3rd and 4th season it gets a little dull and tiresome seeing the same menu design from the 1st season, episode titles written in cement. It would have been nice if they had used a little more imagination and created a different menu design for each season. The way things turned out with all six seasons having the same menu design, it looks a little cheap and gives the impression that there was a rush to get the DVD set released. I wouldn't have minded waiting a few months longer for the DVD's if it would have meant having six unique episode menu designs for each season. Also, for the season 6 menus they used the same theme song version from seasons 1 thru 5, not the updated season 6 version. So one demerit for that as well.


    The other thing which I already mentioned before is I'd rather have the episodes in production order instead of airdate order. Otherwise, this is a nice DVD set, episodes seem to be uncut. I'm off now to watch some more episodes.
     
  17. JohnMor

    JohnMor Producer

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2004
    Messages:
    4,068
    Likes Received:
    1,304
    Trophy Points:
    4,110
    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    Real Name:
    John Moreland


    Joe, I'm with you on those eps. Pretty lame, with "The Clothing Drive" being the worst!
     
  18. LeoA

    LeoA Cinematographer

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2008
    Messages:
    2,264
    Likes Received:
    791
    Trophy Points:
    1,610
    Location:
    North Country
    Real Name:
    Leo
    "MY GOD IT LOOKS TERRIBLE! Then I noticed the color is also in Ward's hair and his necktie too! I think the problem is, these episodes were restored and the image sharpened to a point where anything with a lot of fine detail is going to have this "rainbow effect". The folks who remaster black and white shows for DVD need to make sure that colors don't appear in the picture. Surely there must be a way to achieve this. I imagine this problem is prevalent thruout the DVD set, so before I watch any more episodes I'll turn off the color on my TV set first."


    I don't think it's a problem with the transfers and I doubt turning the color off on your set will solve the problem.


    It sounds like your describing the moiré effect that is most noticeable on things like clothing with patterns on them. What's your setup like? Are you watching on a CRT with a DVD player hooked up via composite? Going to component video in the past on my SDTV largely eliminated that rainbow effect your noticing on things that have patterns on them like a suit, necktie, striped t-shirt, and even someone's hair.


    Make sure whatever your setup is, that your using component or HDMI if possible. It will help, although I don't think it can be fully eliminated.
     
  19. David Von Pein

    David Von Pein Producer

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2002
    Messages:
    5,748
    Likes Received:
    10
    Trophy Points:
    0
    RE: The Leave It To Beaver DVD Menus.....


    I don't mind the menu design being the same for all six seasons. However, I can also appreciate what Lee ("Lecagr") is saying about the menus. But the photos on the right side of each season's menu do change from season to season. So that does make each menu slightly different from year to year.


    The only complaint I have about the menus is the looped music. In my personal opinion, DVD menus should always be SILENT. At the very most, we should have to endure the theme music just one time, followed by dead silence (a la the menus for all of the season sets of The Dick Van Dyke Show).


    And all sub-menus should definitely be SILENT too, IMO. But the LITB menus have looped music on every menu, including all sub-menus. Not a good idea.


    As much as I love Leave It To Beaver (and its music), having the music score looped continuously on all of the DVD menus (particularly on the "Episodes" sub-menu, which is the menu visited the most) is akin to a musical variation of the Chinese Water Torture.
     
  20. Rob_Ray

    Rob_Ray Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Apr 12, 2004
    Messages:
    1,880
    Likes Received:
    1,261
    Trophy Points:
    1,610
    Location:
    Southern California
    Real Name:
    Rob Ray


    I agree. And having theme music playing on the menu takes any from the impact of the actual episode, making it seem redundant and anticlimactic. Menus should be SILENT!
     

Share This Page