Murphy Brown-Season 1 (1988)

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Released 19-Oct-2005

Cover Art

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Drama Main Menu Audio
Audio Commentary-Candice Bergen (Actor) - "Respect"
Audio Commentary
Featurette-Murphy Brown: An FYI Exclusive
Rating Rated PG
Year Of Production 1988
Running Time 512:00 (Case: 535)
RSDL / Flipper Dual Layered
Multi Disc Set (4)
Cast & Crew
Start Up Ads Then Menu
Region Coding 2,4,5 Directed By Peter Baldwin
Peter Bonerz
Ned E. Davis
Barnet Kellman
Studio
Distributor

Warner Home Video
Starring Candice Bergen
Grant Shaud
Faith Ford
Joe Regalbuto
Robert Pastorelli
Charles Kimbrough
Pat Corley
Lily Tomlin
John Hostetter
Ritch Brinkley
Garry Marshall
Christopher Rich
Scott Bakula
Case ?
RPI $49.95 Music Andrew M. Chukerman
Steve Dorff


Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame Full Frame English Dolby Digital 1.0 (192Kb/s)
French Dolby Digital 1.0 (192Kb/s)
English Audio Commentary Dolby Digital 1.0 (192Kb/s)
Widescreen Aspect Ratio None
16x9 Enhancement No
Video Format 576i (PAL)
Original Aspect Ratio 1.33:1 Miscellaneous
Jacket Pictures No
Subtitles English
Arabic
Dutch
French
Greek
Hebrew
Hungarian
Polish
Portuguese
English for the Hearing Impaired
Smoking Yes
Annoying Product Placement No
Action In or After Credits No

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

Plot Synopsis

    Murphy Brown was a bit of an 80s icon. Tough female reporter getting by in a man's world by being equally if not more tough. I caught a bit of this when it was originally on, which wasn't hard given it ran for nine seasons, but I was never a huge fan, and I would not stay home to watch it. I picked this off the review list to see if my opinion of it had changed at all. The result was – well, not really.

    Like all live-action situational comedies, Murphy Brown is limited in its locations and interpersonal reactions. Eventually the characters' responses become predictable, then clichéd, then stale...providing, of course that you give them enough of a chance to get there. There are some exceptions to the rule – the writing in Frasier, Seinfeld, Moonlighting and Married...With Children made those shows stand out from the glut of sitcoms, and in the cases of Seinfeld and Married...With Children, eventually becoming cultural identity points of reference. Murphy Brown never quite got there, at least not in this country, despite its extended run.

    Candice Bergen does a good job in her role, but nothing like she does in Boston Legal. It must be gratifying for an actor to be rolling out performances better than ever nearly ten years after your most famous role finished. But although I like this show fine enough, and it definitely has its moments, it's just not that much of a winner for me overall – in short, it doesn't make me laugh until my chest wants to implode.

    This set contains all 22 episodes of the first season. You can find a full list of episodes and episode summaries at TV.com. All episodes are approximately 23 to 26 minutes long.

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Transfer Quality

Video

    Video is presented in the original aspect ratio of 1.33:1 full frame. Colour is a little washed out, but the picture is quite sharp. There is some minor aliasing and a little dirt, but otherwise this is transfer is quite good. I spotted no dual layer pauses.

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

Audio

    Audio is available in the original English and also French mixed in 2.0 Dolby Digital Stereo. Dialogue is fine and clear. There are no surrounds or subwoofer use.

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

Extras

Menus

    All menus are presented in 1.78:1, 16x9 enhanced. They are static and silent.

Audio Commentary: “Respect”

Audio Commentary: “The Summer Of ‘77”

Featurette: “Murphy Brown: An FYI Exclusive”

R4 vs R1

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

    Content wise, the releases across the regions appear to be the same. There is a definite difference in terms of PAL/NTSC image and region coding, but I don't have a Region 1 release for direct comparison. There is some commentary going around regarding faults with the R1 picture. However, these issues are not present in the R1 release. I'm going to give this to the R4 release for better picture resolution.

Summary

    Murphy Brown is an amusing but dated stalwart of TV sitcoms from the late 1980s and early 1990s. While it never made a real impact on me, it was definitely a popular show.

    Video and audio are pretty good without being outstanding, but by the sounds of it better than the video for R1.

    Though bare on extras, these ones are worthwhile.

Ratings (out of 5)

Video
Audio
Extras
Plot
Overall

© Edward McKenzie (I am Jack's raging bio...)
Saturday, January 27, 2007
Review Equipment
DVDSony DVPNS92, using HDMI output
DisplaySony VPL-HS60 WXGA 3LCD Cineza Projector (10,000:1 contrast ratio) with 100" Longhom Pro-Series Micro-Textured White Matte PVC 1.78:1 16:9 Fixed Mount Screen with Black Velour Trim. Calibrated with Video Essentials/Digital Video Essentials. This display device is 16x9 capable. This display device has a maximum native resolution of 720p.
Audio DecoderBuilt in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with Video Essentials/Digital Video Essentials.
AmplificationSony TA-DA9000ES
SpeakersJensen QX70 Centre Front, Jensen QX45 Left Front & Right Front, Jensen QX20 Left Rear & Right Rear, Jensen QX-90 Dual 10" 250 Watt Subwoofer

Other Reviews NONE
Comments (Add)
Video problem in R4 release - REPLY POSTED