Monday, December 11, 2006

WKRP on DVD - A-OK

Fox appears to have finally spilled the beans: they're going to release WKRP in Cincinnati on DVD.

I've been hearing about this for a while but I couldn't say anything until it became official (for one thing, it might have fallen through and then I'd have looked like an idiot).

I'll have more to say about the music issue when more news starts coming out. It will fall short of having all the music, but my guess for now is that it'll be a lot better than the atrociously re-dubbed versions that ran on Nick at Nite (in the U.S.) or The Comedy Network (in Canada). More later.

While I'm not making threats, I will say just this: if, when the first season comes out, you have some money to spare and choose instead to spend it on some other DVD, I will find out about it and I will be very, very annoyed with you. Not that I'm making threats.

The point is that the first season needs to sell as well as it possibly can or we won't get the other three seasons.

I think it will sell, though. For one thing, while the first season of WKRP wasn't the very best in my opinion, it did produce a huge number of fan-favorite episodes, episodes that people still think of immediately when they remember watching WKRP in Cincinnati. One of them, of course, was the Thanksgiving turkey drop (which was much-viewed on YouTube a week ago), which I'm assuming Fox will call attention to when they promote the DVD. But the first season also had:


- The concert by the "hoodlum rock" group, Scum of the Earth
- Les Nessman's news report about "Chi Chi Rodriguez"
- Mr. Carlson mistaking cocaine for foot powder
- The episode where Johnny's reflexes get better with every drink
- The episode about Venus Flytrap the army deserter
- The "Ferryman's Funeral Homes" jingle
- The tornado episode


And so on. One of the possible reasons that show did so well in syndication is that the first season was very strong; that meant that the episodes people liked were turning up as soon as it hit syndication, whereas with some shows, people have to wait through 22 or 44 episodes to get to the seasons they like best.

Finally, here's a short scene from the first season where the DVD producers really will need to do everything possible to retain the music:



6 comments:

AnthonyF3 said...

Oh, man. That is great news. I can't even wait.

And I say that as someone who got into the who watching the episodes you posted on YouTube. Good work.

Ivan G. said...

While I'm not making threats, I will say just this: if, when the first season comes out, you have some money to spare and choose instead to spend it on some other DVD, I will find out about it and I will be very, very annoyed with you. Not that I'm making threats.

Was there any doubt that I wouldn't buy this on DVD?

Honestly...

Brent McKee said...

Great to hear this news. There are times when the correct music is absolutely essential to the episode. I'm particularly thinking of the Russian defector episode where the song Tiny Dancer is essential to the plot. Change that, taking out all mentions of the song's title in the process, makes Herb's final line absolutely meaningless. What the people doing the DVD should do (but probably won't) is license some of the music.

Well with WKRP out of the way, maybe now we can see about getting Batman and The Green Hornet out.

J Lee said...

It irks me enough when some audio tech on the video transfers on the Looney Tunes Golden Collection decides to put their own imprint on a cartoon or two by altering the opening/closing theme music, so it would drive me wild if I bought the WKRP DVD and found the background music I remember from my favorite episodes had been changed due to rights problems. Hopefully, Fox will agree to shell out the $$ it takes to get most of the music licensed, though the main part of the problem could lie in exhorborant rights fees (something the folks at the RIAA seem to have become experts in over the past 5-6 years).

Randy said...

I'll be honest and admit that whether or not I buy this set will depend on the severity of the music edits and whether or not the edits negatively affect the content of the shows.

Anonymous said...

^^ nice blog!! ^@^

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