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Time/Life Press Release: Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In: The Complete Series

Discussion in 'TV on DVD and Blu-ray' started by Ronald Epstein, May 9, 2017.

  1. Matt Hough

    Matt Hough Director
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    I watched the Netflix tribute special today. More nostalgic than hilarious, but good to see some of the clips again. The new stuff should have been zanier and more rambunctious. Just using profanity doesn't make it hip or hilarious, and the sense of madcap abandon was completely missing.
     
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  2. Jesse Skeen

    Jesse Skeen Producer

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    Incidentally I just checked out Time-Life's Season 4 set- they managed to get the frame rate right on ONE episode, the 22nd. Those who say they can't see the problem should look at this one to see how all of them should look.
     
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  3. MartinP.

    MartinP. Screenwriter

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    ^^^
    I've been watching these for two years and I have no problem with the way they look.
    I will check that one you've pointed out, though, to look at.
     
  4. Lecagr

    Lecagr Supporting Actor

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    I watched season 4 episode 22 and didn't notice any change or difference in the video quality. I compared the episode to the other ones on the disc, #19, 20, & 21, and to me they all look the same. #22 looks no different compared to the others.
     
  5. Jesse Skeen

    Jesse Skeen Producer

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    You must have some settings wrong then- perhaps you have motion-smoothing enabled on your TV, which would fake the videotaped look on anything that doesn't have it? If you're watching on a computer then you could have the opposite effect, as those don't always get high frame rate right regardless of how it's encoded.

    The Arte Johnson interview on the first disc is also at the proper video frame rate. The one with Lily Tomlin was shot in 16x9 and at a lower frame rate, which I'm not a fan of but in that case that is how it's supposed to look.
     
  6. Message #386 of 422 Jun 30, 2019
    Last edited: Jun 30, 2019
    Lecagr

    Lecagr Supporting Actor

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    I watch DVD's on a 21 inch Sony Trinitron TV, as far as I know it doesn't have a motion-smoothing setting. But the shows look fine and I haven't noticed issues like those you are describing. One thing I have noticed is that the video image is softer in the season 1 and 2 episodes. Then with season 3 and forward, the video image is sharper. Maybe the season 1 and 2 shows have degraded a little over the years. Some episodes also have audio issues, audio level is too low/soft, but fortunately only a few episodes have this problem. Some season 3 shows have a soft/fuzzy video image while others have a sharper image.
     
  7. MartinP.

    MartinP. Screenwriter

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    When it comes to these issues a few bring up, I refer back to this post, a couple paragraphs which I quote below:

     
  8. nobajoba

    nobajoba Stunt Coordinator

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    Lecagr- I've long noticed that season one and two seasons are softer, inferior quality and I mean back in the 80s, 90s and 00s when the show was rerun I noticed this. So something about the video tape they used the first 2 1/2 seasons didn't hold up quite as well. Right about when Lily Tomlin joined in season 3 is when I notice a big improvement on the video quality.
     
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  9. nobajoba

    nobajoba Stunt Coordinator

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    RIP Arte Johnson, who passed July 3. This list of surviving Laugh In cast members just got shorter.
     
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  10. Lecagr

    Lecagr Supporting Actor

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    I agree with your assessment, about mid way into season 3 there's an improvement in video quality and the image is clearer/sharper.

    The funny thing is, Judy Carne is my favorite so I tend to watch those first 2 1/2 seasons/early episodes more than the later episodes, despite the early episodes having a softer/fuzzy video image.
     
  11. nobajoba

    nobajoba Stunt Coordinator

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    I'm sorry your fav episodes are those ones, that's a bummer. My fav is Lily Tomlin so I watch the later eps more often. It was just the way it turned out.
     
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  12. Lecagr

    Lecagr Supporting Actor

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    It's alright, the video quality of those early season episodes gives them a nostalgic/aged appearance so it's not really a bad thing. Overall, season 2 is my favorite season of the series.
     
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  13. Jesse Skeen

    Jesse Skeen Producer

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    Quote: "When it comes down to it, I'm not seeing frame rate issues others claim to see. If these *have* been deinterlaced, they were done very well and, to me, do not have that "soap opera" effect."

    These are SUPPOSED to have that "soap opera" effect as they were shot on videotape. The fact that they do not is the problem here, aside from the one episode I spotted on season 4.

    The differences in overall picture quality in the earlier seasons are likely from the type of cameras used. Even then, when shown from a video source in the proper frame rate, that type of material looks like it could have been shot yesterday.
     
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  14. MartinP.

    MartinP. Screenwriter

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    ^^^

     
  15. BobO'Link

    BobO'Link Producer

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    Sigh... here we go... again...

    1960s/70s 2" (Quad) videotaped productions do *not* look like modern video which gave the "Soap Opera Effect" its name. It's not nearly as crisp, even if you go back to original tape and do some clean up. The episodes of Laugh In I've watched so far look exactly like I'd expect 2" videotape product from that era to look. You have the same occasional color "ringing" effects from the cameras as well as the foibles of that tape format and the machines. Even though cameras improved significantly over the years it does *not* look like film and it does *not* look like modern (digital) videotaped productions. It's not as crisp, although can look quite good, and certainly doesn't have that "Soap Opera Effect" look of modern, digital, videotaped productions.
     
  16. MartinP.

    MartinP. Screenwriter

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    I trust your experience in the matter, Howie, thanks for your input.
     
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  17. AndyMcKinney

    AndyMcKinney Cinematographer

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    Of course, 1960s video won't look as clear and crisp as modern video, but it should still have the same fluid motion as videotape in all eras.

    I think what was being said was that the framerate was off, giving jerky (non-fluid) motion. I know I've seen this crop up on random Johnny Carson repeats on AntennaTV (not all of them, just a few) and it's very distracting. This problem also affected BCI's DVD release of Password.

    If the video on Laugh-In looks the same as on Dark Shadows, then I would assume everything is okay. However, there are enough people saying that there is a problem, and it makes me worried that some people here either don't have an "eye" for whether interlaced video is properly encoded or not, or are watching on TVs with some signal processing turned on, that could be making them think the set is okay when it's actually their TV that's making it look 'right'.

    I have no reason to doubt Jesse or the other people on other forums who have said these sets are botched. I wish I could view this set without purchasing it so I could definitively argue the point one way or the other
     
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  18. MartinP.

    MartinP. Screenwriter

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    I checked this episode out along with episodes 21 & 23 and, frankly, if there is a difference, then I just don't see it. I've watched every episode more than once and I have no problem with it.

    One has to trust their sources and I admit I'm dubious of online chatter from posters in forums who profess to know what they're talking about because oftentimes they do not. I gave an example once of just that sort of thing, so I don't automatically believe something someone says. I had said that I read a lot of the reviews of this set and none of them from audio-video sources has mentioned this as a problem. Or reviewed it negatively as a quality issue.

    And to those who beg to differ, in message #241 of this thread, I gave the email addresses of two places where I told the people who think there's a problem to contact them and ask their questions and see what replies they get. (It wouldn't do any good for me to do that since I don't see any problem.) No one has done that. If they did they didn't tell us here.

    These posts always bring to mind that saying, which I paraphrase, "Who am I going to believe you or my lying eyes?"
     
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  19. Lecagr

    Lecagr Supporting Actor

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    I'm in the same camp with Martin P. and all the others who don't have issues with the video on these DVD's. The audio level is a little low/soft in a few episodes but that's the only thing I can complain about.
     
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  20. nobajoba

    nobajoba Stunt Coordinator

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    I'm with Martin P too. I have no problem with the TL set. I am just thrilled that Laugh In is finally out in its entirety.
     
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