The Carol Burnett Show: The Lost Episodes [DVD]
Cast: Carol Burnett, Vicki Lawrence, Harvey Korman
Release Date: Now Available On DVD
A Review By: Kevin Lovell
Disc Rating: 8.5/10
Get ready for fun, laughs and plenty of musical numbers, not to mention some notable guest stars and a whole lot more. The first five seasons of Carol Burnett’s famous variety series ‘The Carol Burnett Show’ have been mysteriously missing since their original broadcast in the late 60’s on CBS, now after decades of being available in any format, 16 classic and previously believed lost episodes which have been selected by none other than Carol Burnett herself have now been recovered and restored to the highest quality possible and are now available on DVD for you to own at long last. Featuring legendary guest appearances by such stars as Don Adams, Don Rickles, Bob Newhart, Lucille Ball, Burt Reynolds and a great deal more, get ready to laugh and enjoy these classic missing episodes, recovered and available for you to enjoy time and again on DVD at long last; break out the champagne.
Fans of both the classic variety series ‘The Carol Burnett Show’ and of the talented and hilarious Carol Burnett’s work in general will definitely want to make certain to pick up a copy of Time Life’s 6-Disc Collector’s Edition DVD release of ‘The Carol Burnett Show: The Lost Episodes’ to add to their collections. While there are some noticeable (yet unavoidable) faults in the episodes as a result of the age and source, this wonderful collection includes impressive video and audio presentations (especially with all things considered) in addition to multiple hours of fantastic bonus content including ‘A Backstage Tour’ as Carol and company return to studio 33, plus tons of interviews and a whole lot more (more detailed information regarding the bonus content can be found in the special features section of the technical specification coverage below) easily making this release a definite must own.
The DVD release of ‘The Carol Burnett Show: The Lost Episodes’ features a 1.33:1 4×3 aspect ratio on all of the included episodes, representing the full screen presentation in which it was originally broadcast. The video presentations look quite impressive, especially with all things considered. While there are some notable yet completely unavoidable faults present as a result of the source quality and age, as a whole they still look pretty great. The faults and irregularities present tend to keep more to the edges and borders of the picture, allowing a sharp and surprisingly clean center presentation, never causing anything occurring on screen to be rendered indiscernible. Overall, these are solid video presentations that should easily please the fans, regardless of the minimal issues which are in no way a fault of the mastering process.
The DVD release includes a lossy 2.0 channel Dolby Digital soundtrack on all 16 of the included lost episodes. These lossy audio presentations sound pretty decent as a whole, providing an exceptionally clean and sharp audio presentation on each episode, especially when once again taking into account the age and quality of the source. The musical numbers, minimal effects and everything else share the channel(s) admirably and without issue, never causing any dialogue which may be occurring simultaneously to become distorted or rendered inaudible. Overall, these are impressive 2.0 Dolby Digital soundtracks that shouldn’t disappoint the fans.
The DVD release of ‘The Carol Burnett Show: The Lost Episodes’ includes a truly impressive collection of supplemental material. Included among the multiple hours of bonus content on the release is ‘A Backstage Tour: Carol and Company return to Studio 33’ (running approximately 20 minutes in length). The release also includes a couple of Featurettes featuring interviews and comments with the cast and crew in addition to recent stars reflecting on the series and its impact, they include ‘On The Spot: Carol’s Q & A’ (approximately 20 minutes), and ‘Fabulous Firsts’ (29 minutes), plus some hilarious ‘Outtakes’ (3 minutes) and ‘Show #003 Uncut Q & A (10 minutes). We are also treated to numerous interviews with members of the cast and crew, along with guest stars and the stars of today, the Interviews include: ‘Julie Andrews’ (10 minutes), ‘Carol Burnett’ (11 minutes), ‘Don Rickles’ (2 minutes), ‘Jim Nabors’ (15 minutes), ‘Alan Alda’ (15 minutes), ‘Burt Reynolds’ (14 minutes), ‘Lesley Ann Warren’ (34 minutes), ‘Bill Hader’ (16 minutes), ‘Gloria Loring’ (11 minutes), ‘Queen Latifah’ (5 minutes), ‘Vikki Carr’ (18 minutes), ‘Carol Channing’ (8 minutes) and ‘Jack Jones’ (29 minutes). Last, but certainly not least we are treated to a few Bonus Sketches, these include: ‘Opening Number from Julie and Carol at Lincoln Center’ (9 minutes), ‘Morton of the Movies’ (15 minutes) and ‘The Dentist’ (10 minutes).