THE MONKEES TV SERIES: Show Facts & Speculation About Possible Future HD Releases

Mark Y

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By the way -- as recently as a few years ago, when the series aired on cable they were still using the 1986 Colex pre-edited syndication versions of the shows mostly; IFC seemed to have the mostly uncut MTV/Nick versions. (The series simultaneously ran mostly uncut on MTV/Nick while "edited on video" episodes were shown in syndication.)

Since the release of the Blu-Ray set, the shows have been shown in remastered versions -- which I believe was a huge part of the reason the Blu-Ray set was released in the first place. (It helped to fund the HD remastering of the shows, which they were going to do anyway.)

Recent showings on Antenna TV seem to originate from the remasters, although they have been edited.
 
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Marsh

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I interviewed Micky Dolenz last week about the new Mike and Micky Show Live album (which is excellent, BTW), and also other subjects. I asked him about a re-release of The Monkees Complete Series Blu-ray box set, perhaps in less lavish packaging, pared down, etc. He said that would be good, but he wasn't privy to any discussions on that. So, he has no idea about a Blu-ray Monkees Series re-release.

Marshall

Link to my Micky Dolenz interview:
https://hubpages.com/entertainment/...he-Monkees-The-Mike-Micky-Show-album-and-more
 

Tony Bensley

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I interviewed Micky Dolenz last week about the new Mike and Micky Show Live album (which is excellent, BTW), and also other subjects. I asked him about a re-release of The Monkees Complete Series Blu-ray box set, perhaps in less lavish packaging, pared down, etc. He said that would be good, but he wasn't privy to any discussions on that. So, he has no idea about a Blu-ray Monkees Series re-release.

Marshall

Link to my Micky Dolenz interview:
https://hubpages.com/entertainment/...he-Monkees-The-Mike-Micky-Show-album-and-more
Also, as a re-release, neither Micky nor Mike would likely be asked to provide any commentary tracks, or be interviewed; plus as Micky Dolenz mentioned, they don't really earn anything from THE MONKEES TV show revenues.

Still, it would be great to have the option of purchasing the aforementioned series on a pared down Blu-ray release, in time for THE MONKEES upcoming 55th anniversary next year, perhaps?

CHEERS! :)
 

Marsh

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Also, as a re-release, neither Micky nor Mike would likely be asked to provide any commentary tracks, or be interviewed; plus as Micky Dolenz mentioned, they don't really earn anything from THE MONKEES TV show revenues.

Still, it would be great to have the option of purchasing the aforementioned series on a pared down Blu-ray release, in time for THE MONKEES upcoming 55th anniversary next year, perhaps?

CHEERS! :)
I agree, Tony. That's why I wanted to ask him about a pared down, less lavishly packaged release. I bought The Monkees Complete Series sets in 2003, the ones where the boxes look like little record players. I know those DVD's were eventually released in less fancy, DVD storage cases. I realize it's what the market is, but I see the eBay prices on the Blu-ray sets, and it's over the top. Just thinking too, the 1960's Batman TV series was released in a less fancier Blu-ray set (instead of with the box, mini Batmobile, book etc.) not too long after the original release in 2014.

Marshall
 
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Tony Bensley

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I agree, Tony. That's why I wanted to ask him about a pared down, less lavishly packaged release. I bought The Monkees Complete Series sets in 2003, the ones where the boxes look like little record players. I know those DVD's were eventually released in less fancy, DVD storage cases. I realize it's what the market is, but I see the eBay prices on the Blu-ray sets, and it's over the top. Just thinking too, the 1960's Batman TV series was released in a less fancier Blu-ray set (instead of with the box, mini Batmobile, book etc.) not too long after the original release in 2014.

Marshall
I have that no frills Italian BATMAN TV series Blu-ray set. The episodes look fantastic!

Perhaps somebody at Rhino or Warner Music might be the ones to ask about any possible future pared down Monkees Complete Series Blu-ray set? Even a release consisting of the first 7 Blu-ray discs (With all 58 episodes, and their various alternate and commentary tracks!) as originally presented on the limited edition 10 disc Blu-ray set would be fantastic!


Excellent interview, by the way!

CHEERS! :)
 

Marsh

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Thanks for the kind words also, Tony. I agree with you about even a 7 Blu-ray disc Monkees set.

Marshall
 
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The Obsolete Man

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From Monkees45s.net, thanks to an eagle-eyed poster over at the BR.com forums

APRIL 22:

An update (sorta) from Andrew Sandoval regarding the Monkees Blu-Ray TV set:

Background:

This Initially (as of March 15, 2019) appeared to be sold out.

However on December 11, 2019 Rhino sent an email out saying these were back in stock
and available for sale. But the website did not allow you to add the item to your cart,
so you couldn't purchase it. I wrote Rhino about this and they never wrote me back.

Later Andrew confirmed that these were in fact NOT sold out.
Rhino only sold through the assembled box sets and it was more of a money/labor issue
why the others were not put together and offered for sale.


Now today, Andrew had this to say on one of his eBay listings:

"Only a few thousand of these sets were released to the public via Rhino mail order
and on tour. People always ask me when they will be available again
and I will tell you the absolute truth: I do not know and I am kinda doubting
with the world in lockdown it will happen at all. I have asked Rhino and they say they
can no longer find the unassembled parts for these."
So now we know. Rhino has been leaving money on the table for over a year and driving business to flippers and scalpers through their own incompetence.

You know, if they wanted to knock about a hundred bucks off the price, I'd buy just the discs in their little sleeves and house them in my old DVD record player boxes.
 

BobO'Link

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I'd love that but with Rhino's pricing history I doubt they'd reduce the price by much, if at all, for a "disc only" type release. They're a lot like Shout! with pricing and tend to overprice everything, rarely offering sales that take prices to what you'd expect the regular MSRP to be.

That release had the discs in cardboard sleeves so there was very little "special" other than the bonus material and booklet.

Based on the prices for the last DVD edition a basic BR release should retail for no more than $100. Frankly, that's what I'd expect that "feature laden" set to have as a MSRP - in spite of song licensing (which shouldn't be that much considering...) and the bonus discs/booklet.

Yet another release I'd love to have in my collection but little hope of every seeing it released again, much less at an "affordable" price.
 

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Tony Bensley

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I'd love that but with Rhino's pricing history I doubt they'd reduce the price by much, if at all, for a "disc only" type release. They're a lot like Shout! with pricing and tend to overprice everything, rarely offering sales that take prices to what you'd expect the regular MSRP to be.

That release had the discs in cardboard sleeves so there was very little "special" other than the bonus material and booklet.

Based on the prices for the last DVD edition a basic BR release should retail for no more than $100. Frankly, that's what I'd expect that "feature laden" set to have as a MSRP - in spite of song licensing (which shouldn't be that much considering...) and the bonus discs/booklet.

Yet another release I'd love to have in my collection but little hope of every seeing it released again, much less at an "affordable" price.
Especially considering the no frills BATMAN '66 complete TV series Blu-ray set has double the number of episodes of THE MONKEES (120 vs 58!); all of the same disc based special features as the limited edition set; plus, if anything, the BATMAN '66 TV series had far more clearance issues that long prevented ANY kind of home video release. Yet, I was able to import the "Italian" (Really, the UK Region Free set, but with an Italian language label affixed to the back casing!) Blu-ray set for just under $100 Canadian back in the spring of 2015.

In my opinion, at $199 US, THE MONKEES series Blu-ray set was grossly overpriced, and a crappy exchange rate didn't do potential Canadian buyers any favors, either. In 2016, I could and would have gladly ponied up $100 for the DVD to Blu-ray upgrade, but current circumstances make even that rather difficult for me, at this time.

CHEERS! :)
 

BobO'Link

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OK... well... I actually *do* care about the packaging. There are several types I fully detest. In spite of that I'd make the purchase in any of them as long as it was the full series *reasonably* priced. $200 is in no way "reasonable" at my house and $100 would be a bit of a stretch for only 2 seasons of a half-hour show - I don't care how much music licensing is involved. I, like many fans, purchased the CDs - twice - to get the bonus stuff. You have enough of my "music licensing" money already. And, yes, I know that's not how music licensing works... but frequently the exhorbitant fees many ask for "licensing" smacks of greed.
 
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The Obsolete Man

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OK... well... I actually *do* care about the packaging. There are several types I fully detest. In spite of that I'd make the purchase in any of them as long as it was the full series *reasonably* priced. $200 is in no way "reasonable" at my house and $100 would be a bit of a stretch for only 2 seasons of a half-hour show - I don't care how much music licensing is involved. I, like many fans, purchased the CDs - twice - to get the bonus stuff. You have enough of my "music licensing" money already.

Two seasons, an hourlong special, and a movie.

And as I think we've discussed before, I don't see where licensing would come into play since Rhino owns everything outright. The worst bit of licensing should've been that tiny clip of The Beatles' Good Morning Good Morning in the final episode and the songs from 33 1/3rd. But The Monkees catalog itself is covered.
 
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Tony Bensley

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Two seasons, an hourlong special, and a movie.

And as I think we've discussed before, I don't see where licensing would come into play since Rhino owns everything outright. The worst bit of licensing should've been that tiny clip of The Beatles' Good Morning Good Morning in the final episode and the songs from 33 1/3rd. But The Monkees catalog itself is covered.
It's neither here nor there, but I recall reading that one of the Jerry Lee Lewis numbers ("Whole Lotta Shakin" I think!) was edited out of the Blu-ray edition of "33 1/3rd Revolutions Per Monkee" due to clearance issues. It is intact (As is The Beatles' "Good Morning, Good Morning" wake up alarm on Episode 58, "Mijacogeo" aka "The Frodis Caper.") on THE MONKEES Season 2 DVD set, however.

CHEERS! :)
 

Mark Y

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I'd have to go back and read it again, but if it's the packaging elements that were lost or misplaced, and they still have the discs themselves, it would make all the sense in the world for them somewhere down the line to just throw them together into a simpler package (which I would have preferred anyway) and try and sell them off. It sounds like they lost money on this project and one would assume they would like to recoup as much as possible in whatever way possible.

(Or that could just be an excuse, who knows? I remember reading that a cleaning lady at EMI accidentally threw out the negatives and transparencies of the cover art from the Beatles' first album,"Please Please Me!")

The Rhino or Warner execs probably have a bad taste in the mouth from doing a "labor of love" project (actually several over the years) and losing money on it. But ultimately I would hope they would eventually try and get what they can out of what's left over. They must know there are people who want the show on Blu-Ray but missed out on the limited edition (especially given the price point, and the statement that eventually a more affordable version would see general release).

Rhino owns the shows and the recordings, but they don't own the music publishing for the songs (as far as I know -- even though Columbia owned it all at the time). Royalties still have to be paid on those. Also, many of the extras on the bonus discs involved licensing from other entities (which at this point in Rhino's history, I'm kind of surprised they did at all, as they normally try to keep everything in house these days). I personally bought the set mainly for the extras, because even though the first list of intended extras didn't match what was ultimately included, there was a treasure trove of rare stuff which otherwise never would have been released. I certainly am very pleased to have pristine restored versions of the shows too.

I don't know the figures involved so I can't really comment with any "authority," but it's possible that "Batman" was less expensive because "Batman" was one of the most requested and anticipated shows never to have been previously released in a home video format, and still a viable mainstream character to contemporary audiences, with a major franchise involving the comic books, movies, merchandising etc. In other words, they knew they'd sell enough units to make it back. As big a Monkees fan as I am, I know that while they still have a strong fanbase, it's certainly not at "Batman" franchise level.
 
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i would guess that they wouldn’t have sold out yet if they hadn’t had to send so many replacement sets due to packaging problems.
 

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Back to music publishing...

I checked out the second four albums, since I have those handy.

It says in the liner notes "all selections controlled by Rhino Entertainment Company".

Now, that means they have the publishing rights, correct?
 

Mark Y

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Back to music publishing...

I checked out the second four albums, since I have those handy.

It says in the liner notes "all selections controlled by Rhino Entertainment Company".

Now, that means they have the publishing rights, correct?
I don't think it necessarily means that, but I'm not an entertainment lawyer. Do these sets have any info on music publishers for particular songs?

Also on the audio side of things...what is the deal with those three "new" tracks that were on the "Then And Now" comp in 1986? I have read conflicting accounts over the years. They were done for Arista, but before the court ruling where all Monkees related stuff reverted back to Raybert, who then sold it to Rhino. I would think that transaction would NOT have included those songs ("That Was Then, This Is Now," "Anytime, Anyplace, Anywhere," "Kicks") because Raybert had nothing to do with those. In response to inquiries about why Rhino never included "Kicks" on any compilations, they once replied "we don't own Kicks." Yet "That Was Then..." shows up all the time on compilation CDs. Since the early 1990s transaction where Rhino assumed ownership of the Monkees, I never see a licensing credit for "TWTTIN." Could they "own" that track and not the other two? Or "TWTTIN" and "Anytime..." but not "Kicks?" That doesn't make any sense to me.
 

Tony Bensley

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I don't think it necessarily means that, but I'm not an entertainment lawyer. Do these sets have any info on music publishers for particular songs?

Also on the audio side of things...what is the deal with those three "new" tracks that were on the "Then And Now" comp in 1986? I have read conflicting accounts over the years. They were done for Arista, but before the court ruling where all Monkees related stuff reverted back to Raybert, who then sold it to Rhino. I would think that transaction would NOT have included those songs ("That Was Then, This Is Now," "Anytime, Anyplace, Anywhere," "Kicks") because Raybert had nothing to do with those. In response to inquiries about why Rhino never included "Kicks" on any compilations, they once replied "we don't own Kicks." Yet "That Was Then..." shows up all the time on compilation CDs. Since the early 1990s transaction where Rhino assumed ownership of the Monkees, I never see a licensing credit for "TWTTIN." Could they "own" that track and not the other two? Or "TWTTIN" and "Anytime..." but not "Kicks?" That doesn't make any sense to me.
I'm just spitballing, but "Kicks" was a cover of the original 1966 Paul Revere & The Raiders recording, so different publishing from that, maybe?

CHEERS! :)
 
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BobO'Link

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Back to music publishing...

I checked out the second four albums, since I have those handy.

It says in the liner notes "all selections controlled by Rhino Entertainment Company".

Now, that means they have the publishing rights, correct?
That's hard to say without a break down:

There are 2 different copyrights in play: Copyright in the song (known as publishing rights) and copyright in the sound recording (known as master rights). The publisher only deals with the publishing rights, which is the songwriting side and includes the music and lyrics.

The "publisher" gets paid any time a song is streamed, put on physical media, played on radio/TV, performed, basically when ever it's commercially "performed" (which can be a recording) anywhere in any fashion.

Master rights are typically controlled by the studio releasing the songs in some manner (vinyl, tape, CD, digital, etc.) and involve a fee only for that copy but not when it's played.

One entity can control both copyrights or only one of them. Rhino for sure controls the "master rights" but I'd bet there's a publishing company (or more) controlling those rights. There were just too many different songwriters involved for me to believe Rhino holds the publishing rights as well as master rights.
 
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