I can't say the same for the special features themselves. At this point digging through a season's tracks is almost like coming home, meaning the showrunners' overviews of essential episodes are a tad predictable but chock full of info. Worth the cost of admission? By only entering a name, it will show you all possible and effective links. It almost goes without saying then that the show's 21-disc Blu-ray debut would be burdened with enormous fan expectation. But as catalog television goes, it could have been a lot worse.
Looking back, there are so many ways this show could have gone off the rails. It isn't the track's lossy nature that spoils things. So no, the new Complete Series box set isn't the definitive Friends compendium the more ravenous fans among you have been dreaming of since Blu-ray got off the ground. Even so, it's a nice, heartfelt trip back through time. All that being said, I'll be the first to admit -- and celebrate -- the fact that Friends has never looked better than it does here. To them, any half-hearted explanation would merely be seen as an excuse, something Warner would have been wise to anticipate and address with a brief on-screen message at the open of each season e.
Our previous show had been canceled after six episodes. On the one hand it keeps the producers focused and on task. Friends wouldn't be Friends without them. Other digital techniques have been used to normalize and stabilize aspects of the series' 236-episode photography too; just none that lead to nearly as many mishaps. The showrunners tend to get a bit more distracted by the performances and drift off on more tangents than they have before, but they still cover plenty of key Season Six topics and touch on everything fans could want to know.
And Jeffrey Klarik, whose brilliant and uncredited dialogue, jokes and story ideas can be found everywhere from the pilot to the series finale. If we'd coerced our cast into doing a series of appalling Diet Coke commercials thus igniting a ferocious backlash against the show oh wait, that happened. The showrunners' comments have been recorded separately, which is a disappointment, but they manage to cover a fair amount of information about the development, casting and production of the series' opening 24-episode volley. If one of the other actors who in desperation we'd previously offered the roles to hadn't turned us down. No, the real problem here is that the show's unexpectedly full and energetic sound design could have used further remastering and adjustment, as several lingering issues bring it down half a notch.
A dim-witted but lovable Joey. Be that as it may, it looks better than any series release thus far. Fans have been chomping at the bit for its release, Warner Bros. Buy in, set aside a few weeks to make your way through the series, and reconnect with some old sitcom friends. Main Cast Friends cast from left to right, as , as , as , as , as and as. Fans who aren't on a commentary bender will be more than pleased with everything Bright, Kauffman and Crane have to offer.
The victim -- yes, more vocal detractors are at this moment deploying such hyperbolic language -- isn't the consumer or the fan. In other words, dry but informative. Beneath that is a sturdy 21-disc rectangular book-style case 11 x 6¾ x 1¼ with yet another concealed magnetic clasp, six heavy cardboard pages with two disc sleeves on each side of each page, and 21 Blu-ray discs two for each season and one bonus disc. Tis the season to chuck frugal out the window, hunt for online deals, and buy your dearest friends -- the Rosses, the Rachels, the Monicas, the Joeys, the Phoebes and the Chandlers in your life -- a box set they might hesitate to buy for themselves. A few minutes later, he invites Aniston, Kudrow and Courtney Cox into the spotlight.
Friends is classic catalog television, pure and simple. It isn't just a cult favorite either. First, let's deal with the original 35mm negatives and the series' original photography. And it wasn't just dumb luck, a coveted Thursday night time slot, or even the show's tireless audience. Imagine actor commentaries, writers' chats and other combinations.
The same could be said of some seasons. See international audiences react, go inside foreign studios to see episodes dubbed in different languages, and learn about challenges associated with episode translations. No Aniston, Perry, Cox, Kudrow, LeBlanc or Schwimmer, except in the endless clips that litter the proceedings. Monica herself had weight issues not that long time ago. Worse perhaps is the fact that there are several notable absences, chief among them Season Two's commentary tracks and, more notably, the bulk of the series' extended episodes. Bright, Marta Kauffman and David Crane. Inside is a 34-page booklet with a season by season breakdown of the episodes available for quick reference when trying to find your favorite Friends outing.
The discs seem safe enough the sleeves are glossy, the pages are glossy, and the chances of scratching anything are slim to none , but even small finger indentations would have made removing discs that much easier. Still no sign of the main cast, though, which would have rocketed the 21st disc's documentaries to heights unknown. We had a genius room full of writers who were hilarious even at their most sleep-deprived, a remarkable crew, and a stellar lineup of directors beginning with the legendary-for-good-reason James Burrows. The box set also touts more than four hours of new extras, but that's where things go from underwhelming to strange. It isn't perfect, untoppable or inexhaustible either, and there's plenty of room for expansion and improvement. If you're on your umpteenth track, though, prepare for the malaise that sets in.