Your Thoughts: Sesame Street Old School Volume 3 1979-1984 DVD

minor muppetz

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I wasn't expecting the behind-the-scenes footage from the birdwatchers episode to include behind-the-scenes of more of the episode than the 40th anniversary set had (it makes sense that set only had behind-the-scenes of the one clip that was included). I also noticed that the interview with Caroll Spinney included some behind-the-scenes footage that wasn't included on the DVD (seperately from the interview) or on the 40th anniversary set.
 

Oscarfan

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My copy arrived earlier today, but I can't pick it up from the office until eight. Phooey. But, since the price went down since I ordered it, I got $5 back!
 

Drtooth

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Part of the reason for that is they went with 2 discs instead of 3. So we ended up with three full episodes on one disc, which doesn't leave much space for other material. I guess to keep it consistent, they used the same number of clips per season and filled up the spare space on disc 2 with some other goodies. I don't know why they went that route with two discs (saves money?), but its not necessarily a bad thing.

Warner Bros hates having more disks than it needs to, even at the result of double sided disks (YUCK, and Double Yuck!) What gets my goat is when they use the double disk to put one bonus feature and up to 3 episodes that just didn't fit. I can forgive a low number of bonus bits for that. I just hope they step the game up with the next volume to a full six per season.
 

minor muppetz

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I'm kinda hoping that if volume 4 comes out and is two-discs for disc 2 to at least have a little more bonus clips per season. Like 5 bonus clips each for seasons 16-18 and 6 or 7 each for seasons 19-20. But then again I guess it depends on what kind of additional bonus features it has. I'd like for some additional street stories to be included as well, and I don't care either way if it has an animated storybook.
 

Oscarfan

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Picked up my copy; liking what I see so far! I perusing the bonus features first; The Chaplin bit was actually very funny. I kinda wish they'd had more segments on here; as much as there are repeats from the 40 Years disc and stuff online, it's great they still could put some rare bits like that out. Also, the theme doesn't seem to be that big an issue, seeing as though the instrumental still plays at the beginning and end of the episodes.

Also, Philip, there's another Noggin edit to #1316 with Oscar and Osvaldo in the rain following the Madrigal Alphabet bit.
 

minor muppetz

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I wonder, if Sesame Workshop keeps putting out sets with every five season premieres, I wonder if it'd be better to eventually drop the "Old School" titles and replace it with a different title. Though I don't know what an appropriate substitute title would be.

Of course if they get to releasing the season 26-30 premieres those might be considered "old school" by then. Ditto to if they get around to the season 31-35 premieres (though most of those have been released on DVD, even if it's just the street stories). And who's to say that if the show's still on the air when they run out of five-year periods that there won't be another five-year (or longer) wait?

If this set doesn't sell well enough I hope we can get something for the nostalgiac collectors next year. Maybe a two-disc release of maybe four full episodes from earlier than 1984, or a release of the show's best-known episodes not on the Old School DVDs (the full episode 1839, episode 2096, Maria and Luis get married, Gabbi is born), or a release of the hawaii episodes (though that would be six episodes, one more than five), or even just a release of classic inserts.
 

minor muppetz

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Well, I've finished watching all five episodes today, though there's still some bonus features I haven't watched yet (audio commentary, Goodbye Mr. Hooper, How to Be a Grouch with Caroll Spinney's video image). It's all great.

When watching episode 1446, I was surprised to see that an old recording was used when Big Bird sang ABC-DEF-GHI. It's interesting to hear the season 1 Big Bird voice over visuals of season 12 Big Bird, especially when his better-known voice is heard for the rest of the show. Even more surprisingly: They used the recording from the first broadcast as opposed to the original record recording (he contemplates asking Bob or Gordon, which he did in the original version but not the record version). Sure, there are other instances where remakes use earlier recordings, but this one seems to stick out more (though after watching the 1991 version of I Love Trash so much on The Best of Friends, it also feels a little odd hearing 1970 Oscar on 1991 Oscar, especially with Oscar's spoken-word introduction coming right before the old recording).

Watched episode 1316 last night. I was surprised that Maria was celebrating her 21st birthday. When she first appeared in season 3 she looked a lot older than 11 (actually I'd say when she debuted she looked closer to 17). Maybe it's a case of "dawson casting", a term used by TV Tropes to refer to actors who are much older that the characters they play are supposed to be.

Also in that episode, when Oscar's in his traveling can, his legs look longer than they do in any other "traveling trash can" scene that I've seen, and the can looks bigger as well. In this episode it seems we never see Oscar's legs out of the trash can when he's with the rest of the cast (when he walks away from Gordon we don't really get a good view of his legs).

It's interesting comparing the amount of classic cuts to the amount of clips in the 40th anniversary set. On that release, seasons 1-5 and 11-15 got heavy focus, while it seemed to rush through seasons 6-10. On Old School Volume 2, each season was represented with at least 9 bonus clips (counting the closing credits crawl), with season 6 being the only season with 6 bonus clips, and the 40th anniversary set had 3 clips for seasons 6 and 9 (well, you could say that season 9 had 4 clips, since it's technically two hawaii clips, but three chapter stops) and only 1 for the other seasons. Volume 1 had an uneven mix of clips for each season, but season 3 had the most, and on the 40th anniversary set season 3 got the least amount of clips, while both volume 1 and the 40th anniversary set seemed to be a little more even with the amount of clips per season. And on the 40th anniversary set seasons 11-14 had 4-6 clips per season, with season 15 having only two. And this set has the least amount of bonus clips.

Hmm, I'm starting to think, maybe next time all of the bonus clips should be on disc 2, instead of spreading them among discs.

Noticed that this time around, the trademark credit for Kermit only appears at the end of the episodes that actually have Kermit. Previous volumes included that credit on all episodes, even ones that didn't. I also find it weird that they had to blur Kermit's face from Caroll's shirt in the behind-the-scenes footage, since he is present on this set (Kermit's face wasn't blurred in behind-the-scenes footage on the 40th anniversary set, while other Muppet images were).
 

Oscarfan

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I've only watched one full episode, but I did watch all the bonuses. Here's some initial thoughts:
  • It's a shame about the theme song, but it's not too jarring.
  • Is it me or is the contrast on all the material kinda dark? It looks better than the 40 Years DVD; most of the clips had a weird blue-ish tint to them.
  • It's also a shame that only five clips per season were picked, obviously for space reasons. It must've been hard for them to chose. Some clips were expected for inclusion and others we've seen to death, but I'm glad they somehow found room for rare bits like "Trash Outta Heaven" and "Snowflakes."
  • I was both hoping and not hoping "Born to Add" would make it to the DVD; I hoped so because it's a great bit, but I also thought that it was already out on the Spoof DVD so there's no reason to re-release it again as they are wont to do.
  • It's too bad they didn't get Caroll to do some commentary, but his interview was like a mini-one.
  • Glad we got behind-the-scenes footage not on the last DVD set.
  • Warren Wolf was quite a dull character; not much comedic potential between him and Nobel Price. Guess that's why he didn't stick.
  • Again, I'm glad "Honk Around the Clock" replaced Cab Calloway's pretty bland spoof. I don't care for the edits, but for me, the former is more entertaining than the latter.
  • Sonia's commentary was very nice; she definitely enjoyed watching the old show.
  • I didn't think about it until the MuppetMindset review, but there really isn't much Cookie Monster on this.
 
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