Friends-Series 5-Volume 2-Episodes 9-16 (1999)

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Released 6-Nov-2000

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Comedy Featurette-Friends Goes To London
Featurette-Friends On Location In London
Music Video-I'll Be There For You-The Rembrandts
Web Links
Rating Rated PG
Year Of Production 1999
Running Time 169:27 (Case: 176)
RSDL / Flipper No/No Cast & Crew
Start Up Menu
Region Coding 2,4 Directed By Gary Halvorson
Dana deValley Piazza
Kevin S. Bright
Joe Regalbuto
Studio
Distributor

Warner Home Video
Starring Jennifer Aniston
Courtney Cox
Lisa Kudrow
Matt LeBlanc
Matthew Perry
David Schwimmer
Case Amaray-Transparent
RPI $29.95 Music Michael Skloff


Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame Full Frame English 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
French
Finnish
Danish
Swedish
Norwegian
Dutch
English for the Hearing Impaired
Smoking No
Annoying Product Placement Yes, occasionally
Action In or After Credits Yes, each episode contains one last funny scene

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

Plot Synopsis

    Friends is an American sitcom revolving around the lives of 6 close friends. It centres around the quirky habits of each character and is primarily filmed within the confines of their two apartments. Please see Michael's earlier review of Friends Series 1 - Volume 1 if you would like to read some background information on the main characters of the show.

    The episodes present on this disc are;

The One With Ross's Sandwich (21:13) - Ross flies into a rage when a work employee eats his Thanksgiving leftover sandwich complete with the "Moist Maker" (a gravy-soaked middle slice of bread). He is told that taking some time off work might do him some good. Joey is starting to get fed up with covering up Chandler and Monica's relationship.

The One With The Inappropriate Sister (21:12) - Ross helps Joey work on becoming a scriptwriter and it starts to cause tension between the guys. Rachel becomes concerned that Danny (The Yeti) is a little too close to his sister. I mean, sharing a bath together would be the last straw!

The One With All The Resolutions (21:10) - It's that time of year again when the group make all their New Year Resolutions. It was decided that Chander's should be to not pick on any member of the group for a week. There are numerous scenes where his one-liners would have brought some good laughs and it nearly kills him to remain silent.

The One With Chandler's Work Laugh (21:14) - Chandler takes Monica to a work function and they enjoy being able to show their affection while away from the prying eyes of the group. This is where Monica finds out that he has a special "work laugh" which she is not at all impressed with.

The One With Joey's Bag (21:10) - Joey gets Rachel to provide some smart-looking clothing to help him land an acting job. She also gives him a man's handbag to try and add some flair and character at his interview, but it ends up giving the opposite impression. Phoebe meets up with a long-lost member of her family.

The One Where Everyone Finds Out (21:10) - This was a barrel of laughs. In this episode, you get to see how each individual member finds out about Chandler and Monica's secret. Ross tries to move into the apartment being sublet by the "Big Ugly Naked Guy".

The One With The Girl Who Hits Joey (21:12) - Joey's new girlfriend Katie has a habit of hitting him on the arm after almost every sentence. He doesn't know how much he can take or if he should break it off with her. Ross moves into his new unit but the move isn't quite as smooth as it should be.

The One With The Cop (21:06) - Ross buys a couch for the new apartment and has a little difficulty getting it back to the unit. Phoebe finds a policeman's badge at Central Perk. Rather than hand it in she parades around pretending to be an officer. That is, until she is caught . . .

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Transfer Quality

Video

    The video quality of this DVD was a little more problematic that that afforded the first of this Series, but nonetheless it was still enjoyable to watch.

    The transfer is presented in an aspect ratio of 1.33:1, and is therefore not 16x9 enhanced.

    Like the previous discs, this transfer is as clear as you would expect to see from a TV show but is not a crisp sharp image. Shadow detail was acceptable overall but at 6:04 in The One Where Everyone Finds Out the detail would be rather poor if your viewing room contains a lot of ambient lighting. There is no detectable low level noise.

    The colours were bright and clear at all times throughout all episodes. There were no irregularities with the colour rendition.

    There were a few MPEG artefacts seen, and as with the previous Series it is most apparent on the hallway and apartment walls than in any other areas. Some examples of the artefact problem can be seen on the door at 4:21 during The One With All The Resolutions. There was quite a bit of aliasing, but in each case it only lasted for 1-2 seconds and was almost always during camera pans. Examples of this can be seen at 11:48 during The One With The Girl Who Hits Joey and on the window blinds at 5:50 in The One With Ross's Sandwich.

    As always, Friends contains a good collection of subtitles to choose from, and the English subtitles that I checked appeared close but not exact to the spoken word. The font size is quite small, most likely to fit some of the longer lines on screen at the same time.

    This DVD is presented as a double-sided single-layered DVD and therefore there is no layer change. Instead, you have to leave your chair for a moment and flip the disc manually to see the other four episodes. Yet again, this disc continues the tradition of poor Friends disc labelling. I would like to see the Side A/B information printed more clearly on the disc.

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

Audio

    There is only a single English Dolby Digital 2.0 stereo track to listen to on this DVD.

    The dialogue was clear and easy to understand at all times and I detected no hiss during any of the episodes. Likewise, there were no audio sync problems. The One With Joey's Bag at 9:41 contains some well-directed front channel use which adds effect to some off-screen action. The laughter and applause track was mixed at a more appropriate level than with the previous series and was therefore not distracting at all.

    The theme and background score was provided by Michael Skloff, and has not changed since the very first Episode of Friends.

    The rears were used for the "canned laughter" and were merely a reproduction of the sound from the front speakers at a slightly lesser volume level.

    The subwoofer was not used by the soundtrack at all.

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

Extras

    An average selection of extras is present, but they are exactly the same as the previous series. My only thought would be that they are there purely as an advertisement to entice people to buy or rent the "Wedding Episode". I imagine that the number of people that would watch Friends in non-sequential order could be counted on one finger.

Menu

    The menu has had an overhaul and is easy to navigate. Like the show it is in Full Screen. If you manually select a particular episode from the menu you are returned back to the menu after it has finished playing. If on the other hand you select the "Play" option on the menu then all 4 episodes are played on each side.

Featurette - Friends Goes To London

    This featurette focuses on the Producer and Director explaining why they decided to do a shoot in London. There is also footage of Phoebe, who stayed in the USA because in the storyline she was pregnant and could not join the group in London. The real reason she stayed in the US is that she hates flying, so they found a nice way keep her at home and in the script.

Featurette - Friends On Location In London

    This featurette offers some background information and location shots of the London episode. This is the episode where the gang heads to London to see Ross get married (again).

DVD-ROM

    When the disc is loaded into a DVD-ROM drive, DVD Friendly is loaded. Two extra menus are available that link to the "Friends Website" and the "Friends Events" site which is really the main Warner Brothers Events site for all of their products.

R4 vs R1

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

    I could not find any reference to an equivalent Region 1 version of this DVD. The only ones that I saw reference to were "Best Of" collection discs.

Summary

    These episodes of Friends had some real side-splitters amongst them. I personally like watching Friends on DVD where it is not interrupted by commercials - I think you get more laughs that way.

    In my review of Episodes 1-8 of this series I said that the video appears to be improving with each series. Unfortunately, we drop a notch on this disc. The comedy made up for it, though.

    The audio is fine - and this time they have mixed the laugh track slightly into the surrounds.

    The extras are the same on both sides of the disc, but The Rembrandts' song is still there...

Ratings (out of 5)

Video
Audio
Extras
Plot
Overall

© Peter Mellor (read my bio)
Saturday, October 20, 2001
Review Equipment
DVDPioneer XV-DV55, using S-Video output
DisplayLoewe 72cm. Calibrated with Video Essentials. This display device is 16x9 capable.
Audio DecoderBuilt in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with Video Essentials.
AmplificationPioneer XV-DV55
SpeakersPioneer S-DV55ST-K Satellite wall mouted 5-Speaker System; Pioneer S-DV55SW-K Powered Subwoofer

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