Joey-Season 1 (2004)

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Released 15-Feb-2006

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Comedy Main Menu Introduction
Main Menu Audio & Animation
Rating Rated PG
Year Of Production 2004
Running Time 501:00 (Case: 506)
RSDL / Flipper No/No
Multi Disc Set (6)
Cast & Crew
Start Up Language Select Then Ads Then Menu
Region Coding 2,4,5 Directed By Kevin Bright
Kevin Bright
Sheldon Epps
Gary Halvorson
Studio
Distributor

Warner Home Video
Starring Matt LeBlanc
Andrea Anders
Paulo Costanzo
Jennifer Coolidge
Drea de Matteo
Case ?
RPI $59.95 Music Will i Am
David Gamson
Marshall Goodman


Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame None English Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
Hungarian Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
Widescreen Aspect Ratio 1.78:1
16x9 Enhancement
16x9 Enhanced
Video Format 576i (PAL)
Original Aspect Ratio Unknown Miscellaneous
Jacket Pictures No
Subtitles English
Danish
Finnish
Greek
Hebrew
Hungarian
Icelandic
Norwegian
Polish
Swedish
English for the Hearing Impaired
Smoking No
Annoying Product Placement No
Action In or After Credits No

NOTE: The Profanity Filter is ON. Turn it off here.

Plot Synopsis

    Remember After MASH, Joanie loves Chachi or Booker? Well, unfortunately for Matt LeBlanc it looks like Joey will join that list of unsuccessful TV spin-offs.

    Joey follows the Californian misadventures of Joey Tribbiani (of Friends fame in case you missed it.) After all of his New York friends got married and had babies he decided to head west in search of fame and fortune in Hollywood.

    Joey is by no means a bad show; there are laughs, some amusing storylines and plenty of guest stars to keep you occupied. The problem is that it is just so typical of the formulaic, middle of the road fare that Hollywood churns out these days that there is nothing to attach you to the show. It's not a patch on the likes of Curb Your Enthusiasm, Arrested Development or Entourage.

    It opened to massive ratings both here and in the US and then plummeted, never to return. Nine showed most of the debut season over the summer in the non-ratings period and NBC have shelved it only two thirds of the way through its second season. It hasn't been cancelled...yet.

    It's not all bleak though. Gina (Joey's trampy older sister) is played well by Drea De Matteo and Joey's agent Bobbie (Jennifer Coolidge) steals every scene she is in. The nephew, Michael (Paulo Costanzo) is pretty annoying though. He's the ineffectual new Chandler. I'm still on the fence about Alex (Andrea Anders), the cute but annoying blonde next door.

    The most amusing thing about this season has been that Joey has been getting tantalizingly close to the fame he yearns for. It's great to see him get close and then just stuff it up somehow. That kind of storyline certainly has potential - the old so close and yet so far quandary.

    For the most part though it's quite predictable. The season finale could be seen about 20 episodes before it happened. It's funny to see how things changed through the season as if producers were wondering how to shake it up to bring back viewers or entice the Friends fan base. Part of that was the continual stream of well-known guest stars to prop up viewer interest.

    Perhaps the most damning indictment of the show is that none of Joey's NY Friends have come in for guest starring spots. That'd seem like a good way to spike ratings but so far no takers. David Schwimmer did direct 2 or 3 episodes from this season though. At least Joey still has a few friends.

    101 Pilot: Joey moves to CA. Michael moves in with him

    102 Joey and the Student: Teaching Michael the fine art of hitting on women. "How you doin'?" etc.

    103 Joey and the Party: Joey throws a party to get to know his neighbours.

    104 Joey and the Book Club: Joey joins a book club to meet women.

    105 Joey and the Perfect Storm: Joey somehow gets selected as understudy for three different plays at the same time.

    106 Joey and the Nemesis: Gina moves in to help care take of a sick Michael and Joey keeps making a fool of himself at auditions.

    107 Joey and the Husband: Joey finally meets Alex's husband. Gina wants to start her hair salon.

    108 Joey and the Dream Girl, part 1: Kelly Preston guest stars as the dream girl, an old friend of Gina's that Joey had a crush on. The only problem? She's married.

    109 Joey and the Dream Girl, part 2: Joey helps his dream girl. Michael and Joey convince Alex she is hot.

    110 Joey and the Big Audition: Joey's in trouble when he's attracted to the actress that is playing his daughter.

    111 Joey and the Road Trip: The gang go to Vegas and everyone gets into trouble. Probably my favourite episode from this season.

    112 Joey and the Plot Twist: Lucy Liu guest stars as Joey's character in his new show gets into serious trouble.

    113 Joey and the Taste Test: A lasagne competition between Alex and Gina, whilst Joey's on set drama continues.

    114 Joey and the Premiere: Joey's new show has its premiere and everyone goes to the party. Romantic tension ensues.

    115 Joey and the Assistant: As Joey's career is starting to move, someone suggests he get a personal assistant. Michael and a friend have a fall out that Joey tries to solve.

    116 Joey and The Tonight Show: Jay Leno cameos as himself as Joey gets a chance to be a guest on The Tonight Show when someone else cancels at the last minute.

    117 Joey and the Valentine's Date: Joey gets interviewed for a magazine and somehow gets a date for Valentine's Day. He wants to cool it off and she doesn't.

    118 Joey and The Wrong Name: Joey goes to the Daytime Soap Awards and makes a big mistake.

    119 Joey and the Fancy Sister: Christina Ricci guest stars as Joey's visiting sister. She ends up ditching her fiancée... how will it affect Joey?

    120 Joey and the Neighbor: Joey starts dating his new neighbour while Alex and her husband are having marital issues.

    121 Joey and the Spying: Alex has ex issues and Joey has problems with his new girlfriend.

    122 Joey and The Temptation: Carmen Electra cameos as Joey's love interest in his new part. How will that affect his relationship with his new girlfriend?

    123 Joey and The Break-Up: Michael introduces his new girlfriend to his mother. Joey and Sarah are thinking about moving in together. Is it too soon for him?

    124 Joey and The Moving In: Michael's trying to get movie tickets from Bobbie (Joey's agent) while Joey is having doubts about his relationship with Sarah.

Don't wish to see plot synopses in the future? Change your configuration.

Transfer Quality

Video

    The series is presented in PAL in the original broadcast ratio of 1.78:1 and is16x9 enhanced.

    I caught some of this on Nine Digital and was impressed at how good it looked at the time. Thankfully this set looks fantastic too. Not long ago I reviewed a Friends best of season 1 disc - there is absolutely no comparison in quality. It's great to see how far the technology has come in a decade.

    Taken from a high definition source, Joey looks first class. The picture is sharp and is possibly as good as a TV show will look until high definition DVDs (and Blu Rays) start coming out.

    It's a very well lit, bright show. Colours come through looking vivid but there is no colour bleed.

    Skin tones look natural, black levels are good and shadow detail is fine. There is no grain present at all.

    There are no MPEG artefacts present.

    Unfortunately there are no chapter breaks in the episodes. I don't understand TV releases that don't have a Chapter menu. Commercial TV ad breaks make a sensible spot to do it.

    There are a tonne of subtitle options; English, Danish, Finnish, Greek, Hebrew, Hungarian, Icelandic, Norwegian, Polish, Swedish and English for the Hearing Impaired

Video Ratings Summary
Sharpness
Shadow Detail
Colour
Grain/Pixelization
Film-To-Video Artefacts
Film Artefacts
Overall

Audio

    The main track is English Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s).

    The dialogue comes through loud and clear. Unfortunately, so does the groanworthy laugh track. Why do we need to be told when to laugh?

    The sync is fine with no problems whatsoever.

    There is quite a bit of music and it does come through quite well, giving a surprising amount of depth for a 2.0 track.

    There is no surround activity and no subwoofer use. The presentation does not suffer though.

    There is also a Hungarian Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s) track.

    Overall it is a competent audio track, not quite reaching the high bar set by the video transfer.

Audio Ratings Summary
Dialogue
Audio Sync
Clicks/Pops/Dropouts
Surround Channel Use
Subwoofer
Overall

Extras

    No special features at all. Perhaps it's because the show is not the big hit the cast and crew were expecting?

    Another potential reason could be the fact that our R4 version beat the US R1 version to market by 4 months so perhaps they weren't ready yet.

    Very disappointing.

R4 vs R1

NOTE: To view non-R4 releases, your equipment needs to be multi-zone compatible and usually also NTSC compatible.

    Considering the R1 hasn't come out yet, it's hard to say. I'd be surprised if there were no special features on the R1 edition though. I'll go with R4 because at least it's out.

Summary

    Unfortunately Joey is not the best sitcom around. Unless you are a diehard Friends or Le Blanc fan it's hard to recommend.

    The video is great. One of the best TV show transfers I have ever seen.

    The audio does the job fine, but is not stand-out.

    No special features shows a lack of respect to fans.

Ratings (out of 5)

Video
Audio
Extras
Plot
Overall

© Ben Smith (boku no bio)
Wednesday, April 26, 2006
Review Equipment
DVDMarantz DV4300, using Component output
DisplaySony VPL HS10 projector on 100 inch 16x9 screen + Palsonic 76WSHD. Calibrated with THX Optimizer. This display device is 16x9 capable.
Audio DecoderSony STR-DE685. Calibrated with THX Optimizer.
AmplificationPioneer
SpeakersDB Dynamics VEGA series floor standers + centre, DB bipole rears, 10" 100W DB Dynamics sub

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