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Shout Factory Press Release: Maude: The Complete Series (1 Viewer)

Kasey

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bretmaverick2 said:
Il, say this. I have watched Maude on various cable outlets and I learned this: like a lot of sitcoms, it was looking tired near the end of its run.

The closing two episodes that moved Maude and Walter to DC was a very strong set up and could have given the show a few more solid seasons. But Bea was ready to leave.
It's my favorite show ever but I agree that the final season was its' weakest. It's harder for me to pick 10 outstanding episodes from that season more than any other; most are merely average, a couple are stinkers and only a couple are excellent ("Maude's Guilt Trip", "The Gay Bar" and perhaps "Vivian's Decision" are the only ones on-par with the greatness of Season 5).
 

JohnMor

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My favorites from each season match Kasey's in a several cases, but I have a few ties that I just can't break:


S1: Maude Meets Florida

Maude's Dilemma, Part 1 (Yes, I actually like this episode NOT for political reasons and find it VERY funny.)


S2: Maude's Facelift, Part 1

The Tax Audit


S3: The New Housekeeper

Walter Gets Religion


S4: Viv's Dog

Honorable mention: Maude's Ex-Convict. Too silly to be taken seriously, but Arthur's reactions are hysterical.


S5: Vivian's First Funeral

The Household Feud

The New Maid


S6: Maude's Guilt Trip


I may be in the minority, but I really hated the 3-part Washington set-up. I thought it was absolutely tired and old-hat and would have made a tedious series. But I'm also glad Bea stopped when she did. I think the show had run it's course.


And I'll add my two cents about how wonderful Bill Macy was. Such a different style from Bea's and yet so right. And I had forgotten how terrific Conraid Bain was as well.
 

Dave Lawrence

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I'm still making my way through the set. As with All in the Family, I find that there are so many strong episodes, it's difficult to narrow down a list of favorites. Even the relative handful of weak episodes are still better than the best episodes of many other series. Still, here are the episodes that I would consider my favorites per season:


Season 1

Maude Meets Florida

Like Mother, Like Daughter

The Ticket

Maude's Night Out


Season 2

Florida's Affair

Maude's Revolt

The Commuter Station

Florida's Goodbye


Season 3

The Kiss

Lovers in Common

Nostalgia Party

Walter Gets Religion


Season 4

The Split

Consenting Adults

Viv's Dog

The Analyst


Season 5

Vivian's First Funeral - my favorite of the entire series

Maude and Chester

The Game Show

Feminine Fulfillment


Season 6 (I like much of this season but agree that it was starting to show its age. Even with the potential Washington change, I think Bea Arthur was wise to decide 6 seasons was enough rather than make what could have been a disastrous 7th season.)

Phillip and Sam

The Flying Saucer

The Gay Bar

The Obscene Phone Call
 

Kasey

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I have to admit "The Flying Saucer" episode is one of my least favorites and IMO one of the worst of the series ("Captain Hero" takes the Worst Episode award) but you guys have good choices otherwise, Dave and John.


I love all of these--brilliant comedy in all of them!

"Maude's Facelift Part 1"

"Maude's Revolt"

"The Kiss"

"The Household Feud"

"The New Housekeeper"
"The New Maid"

"Maude's New Friends"

"Viv's Dog"



"Lovers in Common" is an episode that seems to be a fan favorite but I had forgotten all about it since I saw the TV Land reruns in 1999. I've watched it three times now on DVD but I still can't say it's the funniest of the series. I guess because it's oddly structured and I never cared for Maude when she goes into Joan Crawford mode. Also, the actor playing Peter Durland (Lee Bergere) didn't seem like someone Maude and Vivian would have thought of as "gorgeous". Frequent guest Robert Mandan or someone like him would have been a better choice. Still, it's a fun episode and has grown on me. I also appreciate "Viv's Dog" much more after seeing it again all these years later.


I don't care that much for the musical episodes. The Baby Sally plot in "Musical '78" probably makes it the funniest of the lot (and who can resist Barbeau's steamy version of "Fever" where she concludes the performance in her slip?) and I love the part in "Tuckahoe Bicentennial" when Viv sings "You've got no right to drink the booze" while dressed as Carrie Nation. Otherwise, those are at the bottom of my list.


Also, the heavy-handed "Maude's Moods" is pretty much a stinker as well as "Walter's Crisis". The only worthwhile moment in that depressing 3-part story is Macy's performance when he giddily staggers in with the duck, then ascends the bannister, pausing to bid 'farewell' to Maude, Arthur and Viv.
 

JohnMor

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"Vivian's First Funeral" is also my favorite of the entire series.


I'm not big on the musical eps either, mainly because it just seems odd for this particular series. Almost like they were done just because Bea was a musical comedy performer, as were others in the cast, not because they fit the concept of the series. They fit shows like I Love Lucy and The Dick Van Dyke Show because they are set against musical comedy backgrounds like a nightclub or a TV variety show. The only moment I really liked in them was Adrienne's version of "Fever."


As much as I enjoy "Viv's Dog," I have to say it does bother me a bit that attitude that it's nutty or outrageous for people to spend money on pets' funerals. I realize things have changed in that regard over the years, and I also realize that many people do go way overboard with their pets (spa treatments, etc.), but the "it's only an animal" mentality seems a bit harsh to me. But I still like the episode.
 

moogaboo

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This collection is one that I've been very happy with, so it's really only my obsessive curiosity that makes me ask: has anyone heard anything at all from Shout! regarding edits? Having watched three and a half seasons so far, I'm inclined to say that, if there are any, they are very well done.


Most of the episode times clock in between 25:50 and 26:10, which is amazing. Several do dip below 25:50, though, and it strikes me as odd that a show's running time wouldn't be uniform from episode to episode. I assume networks have always counted on such things in order to sell advertising. Right?


Anyway, it's a fabulous set which I highly recommend, full of witty, adult-aimed repartee, deadpan one-liners, and a lot more laughs than any forty-year-old-plus sitcom should be expected to hold. Also, the picture somehow looks better than the ten-years-younger Facts of Life collection (which I've also been enjoying).
 

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