M*A*S*H (MASH)-Season 10 (1980)

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Released 15-May-2006

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Comedy None
Rating Rated PG
Year Of Production 1980
Running Time 522:08 (Case: 525)
RSDL / Flipper Dual Layered
Multi Disc Set (3)
Cast & Crew
Start Up Ads Then Menu
Region Coding 2,4 Directed By Alan Alda
Hy Averback
Gabrielle Beaumont
Terry Becker
Studio
Distributor

Twentieth Century Fox
Starring Alan Alda
Loretta Swit
David Ogden Stiers
Mike Farrell
Harry Morgan
Gary Burghoff
Jamie Farr
Johnny Haymer
William Christopher
Odessa Cleveland
Case ?
RPI $42.95 Music Benny Golson
Earle H. Hagen
John R. Harris


Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame Full Frame English Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
English Alternate Audio Dolby Digital 2.0 (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 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

    This penultimate season of M*A*S*H hit the TV screens of the US in 1981. The Vietnam War, which this show had come to define in many respects despite being set in the Korean War, was well and truly over. The US had just elected Ronald Reagan, East and West were locked in a vicious Cold War over political ideology, and the economic boom that would see the Soviet Union spent out of existence would shortly begin. It was new horizons for the US, and a show that was looking backwards in the way that M*A*S*H did was starting to lose its audience.

    The 10th Season of M*A*S*H is, sadly, a bit of “more of the same”. The writers, having already churned out a whopping 214 episodes or so (sure, that pales in comparison to some of today’s long-running sitcoms, but it was a milestone in its day) were starting to come up dry on material, and start to recycle a few old plot lines and plot themes. While the show would end on a high, the final TV Movie “Goodbye, Farewell and Amen” being worth the purchase price of the final season alone, the last couple of seasons were a bit of a slog to get there.

    For those who like familiar faces, the majority of the cast are still here:

    The departure of Corporal “Radar” O’Reilly does take a bit of a chunk out of this show, particularly given he was the only original character from the movie. But that’s how showbiz goes. Farr does a passable job as his replacement, but it’s not quite the same somehow.

    There are still plenty of good episodes here for the devoted, though, and one episode that I found particularly affecting, “Where There’s A Will, There’s A War”, which sees Hawkeye draw up a will while under heavy shelling at a forward aid station. Amusing, yet also bittersweet. Unfortunately, there’s also a lot of Hawkeye descending into anti-war tirades that lack the subtle humour of the earlier seasons, and possibly not enough of Winchester’s acerbic wit and contradictory conceptions of war, duty and love.

    The entire series is set out on this 3 disc set. You can find a full list of episodes and episode summaries at TV.com. All episodes are approximately 22 - 24 minutes long.

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Transfer Quality

Video

    Presented in its original broadcast ratio of 1.33:1, Full Frame, I watched most of this on my 42" Sony E-Series 3LCD Rearpro HDTV upscaled at 720p via HDMI and only a handful of episodes on my 100" projection screen using my Sony VPL-HS60, upscaled at 1080i.

    This transfer is acceptable but somehow lacks the clarity of colour and depth the show has managed in its remastered re-runs on Channel 7 over the last couple of years.

    The image is excessively grainy in light of what can be done with transfers these days, and there seems to have been no effort expended on cleaning up night shots.

    I seem to be getting a smoother image on LCD via HDMI than by CRT, but that is hardly surprising. There’s still more work to be done on these transfers, though, in my opinion.

    There were less film artefacts than there were on the prints for Season 4 and Season 5.

    Subtitles are available in English for the Hearing Impaired. They are white with a grey border, and do not substantially deviate from the dialogue.

    The dual-layer pauses are between the episodes, with three or four episodes per layer depending on the disc.

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

Audio

    Audio is available in English 2.0 Dolby Mono with the laugh track on, English 2.0 Mono with the laugh track off.

    My own preference was to watch the episodes without the laugh track, but this is likely to be subjective. I checked both tracks thoroughly, though.

    I find that the laugh track often interferes with dialogue. With the laugh-track off, the dialogue is never muffled or drowned. There are some source-related sync issues.

    There is not a lot of depth to the sound field given its monaural limitations.

    There is no surround information or subwoofer use.

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

Extras

Menus

    All menus are presented in 1.33:1, Full Frame, and are silent.

R4 vs R1

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

    The R1 version is coded to R1, and is formatted in NTSC colour format. Other than that, these sets are identical.

Summary

    M*A*S*H – Season 10 is a bit of a trudge before the final redeeming TV movie at the end of the final season. The transfers here are acceptable, but far from perfect, and totally lacking in extras.

Ratings (out of 5)

Video
Audio
Extras
Plot
Overall

© Edward McKenzie (I am Jack's raging bio...)
Saturday, March 03, 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
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