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ALF - Season One

344 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Max Wright, Anne Schedeen. One starry night in 1986, the Tanner family get an unexpected houseguest-a furry, four-foot-high Alien Life Form" they call Alf, who quickly becomes part of the family. Includes all 26 episodes and more. 4 DVDs. 1986-1987/color/10 hrs/NR/fullscreen.

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"He's just like E.T.," says a character of the fuzzy extraterrestrial stranded on Earth in the pilot episode of ALF. But the fun of this late 1980s family sitcom is that the sardonic ALF (an acronym for Alien Life Form) is nothing like the interplanetary innocent of Steven Spielberg's classic. With his whiplash wit and huckster sensibility, ALF (real name: Gordon Shumway from the late planet Melmac, Lower East Side) enters the lives of the Tanner family as a fully formed rascal whose spacecraft crashes into their garage one night. Worried that the feds will chop ALF up for research purposes, the Tanners--father Willie (Max Wright), a cautious civil servant who doesn't like a lot of fuss at home; wife Kate (Anne Shedeen), and kids Lynn (Andrea Elson) and Brian (Benji Gregory)--reluctantly take ALF in like a shambling, profligate uncle who cracks wise despite having fallen on hard times.

There is a touch of darkness to ALF that inspires some interesting episodes. While most of season 1's episodes find the Tanners and their permanent guest struggling with compatibility, certain stories are sharper for indulging a little black comedy. "Looking for Lucky," for instance, finds Willie and Kate assuming that ALF--who is quite open about his fondness for eating cats--made a snack out of the family kitty. In "Pennsylvania 6-5000," Willie is accused of being a terrorist after ALF uses his host's ham radio to contact Air Force One. One of the best episodes, "Wild Thing" (written by David Silverman, later a co-producer on The Simpsons), is a nutty burlesque in which ALF asks the Tanners to lock him in a crate while he undergoes a 24-hour madness peculiar to Melmac-ians. After he escapes, chaos ensues in the community as cats disappear, a gorilla is freed at the zoo, and Willie--looking for ALF--prowls the streets in his pajamas. Fans of Jerry Stahl's book Permanent Midnight: A Memoir, in which the Hollywood writer describes working on ALF while supporting a severe drug habit, will be interested in his season 1 scripts, particularly the surreal "La Cucaracha," in which ALF and Willie do battle with a car-size cockroach. --Tom Keogh


Special Features

  • All 25 episodes from the 1986-87 season plus the un-aired pilot, all newly remastered
  • Gag/outtake reel
  • ALF facts

Product Details

  • Actors: Paul Fusco, Max Wright, Anne Schedeen, Andrea Elson, Benji Gregory
  • Directors: Paul Fusco, Gary Shimokawa, Nancy Heydorn, Peter Baldwin, Peter Bonerz
  • Writers: Adrienne Armstrong
  • Format: Color, NTSC
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround)
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish
  • Dubbed: French, Spanish
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 4
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: Lions Gate
  • DVD Release Date: August 10, 2004
  • Run Time: 616 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (344 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0002DB5N6
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #15,617 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "ALF - Season One" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

51 of 53 people found the following review helpful By Joseph Siegler TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on August 13, 2004
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
If you've read the other reviews, you'll already know that the episodes on this disc are syndicated versions, not the original NBC ones. That's a shame, as my wife and I watched the show since Day 1 (I'm 38 in 2004, you do the math).

It is nice to have them on DVD. Would it have been better to have the original uncut ones? Hell yeah. But I'll take this. I just hope that if the next seasons are released, that they don't use syndication.

The comments by Alf on the DVD menus are pretty funny, and the blooper reel is awesome (What the hell is that? A plane?) As a long time Alf fan, I'm glad to see these on DVD, but my excitement is tinged with disappointment over them being edited.

The DVD intros recorded by Alf are quite funny. The bit about more FBI warnings made me laugh out loud, as did some of the blooper reel - to hear Alf (mildly) swear made me and my wife really laugh out loud). The syndicated issue aside, the show is STILL damn funny - there's no getting around that issue. :)

NOTE: There's a statement from Lion's Gate on why they have the syndicated versions over the originals online over at TVshowsondvd.com - look in their Alf section.
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62 of 67 people found the following review helpful By skinnyrobbie on August 11, 2004
Format: DVD
I have most every episode taped from the original NBC airings. I expected to be able to eliminate them from my ever-cluttered collection of stuff with the purchase of this long awaited set. Why Lions Gate chose to use edited syndication episodes completely baffles the imagination. Perhaps they plan on later releasing a "Deluxe Edition" so that the consumer will get hit twice to pay for the same product. The $40 list price should have more than adequately covered licensing the rights to the full episodes, but I guess there's no end to corporate greed.

I am stunned by the rave reviews of the Extras: 1) a short gag reel of which only about 15% is funny, 2) some brief trivia screens which is mostly made up of obvious facts that any fan of the show already knows (like A.L.F. stands for Alien Life Form, for example), and 3) credits screens - credits for the DVD authoring is now considered a bonus extra?!?! Sheesh! Would have made better sense to have included some of the best ALF bits from Hollywood Squares, or even included some of the many commercials ALF has appeared in over the years. Or interviews with the cast reflecting on being a part of the show.

The omission of a feature to play all of the episodes on a disc is simply appalling. Interactive is nice, but can you imagine an audio CD in which you have to select each song separately? Adding this feature would have taken the authors mere minutes to code. I just don't get it.

Rather than deluxe packaging, like you get with most TV series box sets, a clamshell case crams in the four discs in a clunky, overlapping layout. No book, either, just a single sheet listing the discs and episodes, and a slipcover for the case. I've seen public domain sets packaged better.
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153 of 179 people found the following review helpful By S. Phillips on August 10, 2004
Format: DVD
I'd love to give the DVD set a good review, as the show is funny. However, in an outrageous and unacceptable move, the studio has released EDITED, CUT versions of the series, made for syndication. When I go out and BUY a TV series on DVD, I do not expect edited junk, I can see that on cable stations.

BOO! HISS! AVOID THIS DVD! Write the studio and tell them you will not sit still for this. Save your money and record the edited versions from TV reruns yourself. Glad I have the uncut network versions from NBC.
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18 of 18 people found the following review helpful By John A. Evicci on November 19, 2004
Format: DVD
Let me just add my voice to the outcry of disappointment over the release of the edited, syndicated versions of the episodes rather than the originals. Don't they know that people who buy DVDs want and expect the definitive, uncut version? This is just unacceptable! I implore Lions Gate (or whoever else might have the ability to do so) to re-release the season one set with the original versions, and not to use that horrible, overlapping disc configuration in the case. What a bad idea!! Please... DO THE RIGHT THING AND RE-ISSUE!!!
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22 of 23 people found the following review helpful By PEB on May 21, 2005
Format: DVD
Having seen the original 24-25 minute UNCUT episodes it is depressing to watch these mutilated episodes (some are missing 7 minutes). Alf-fans should waite for the UK-release instead of this garbage.
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22 of 23 people found the following review helpful By demanding consumer on August 17, 2004
Format: DVD
Love the show, but hate this DVD set. I can only hope Lion's Gate revisits this show on HD-DVD and does it right, with UNCUT episodes. Until I get whole episodes, I won't buy them.
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23 of 25 people found the following review helpful By ALF on August 13, 2004
Format: DVD
"ALF" is an excellent television show, and its first season (which aired in 1986-87) was probably its best. The show takes a standard family sitcom premise and adds its delightfully loony twist: the Tanners, a typical American household, get an indefinite houseguest in the form of a furry, 3-foot creature from another planet. The planet is Melmac, and the alien is ALF, a sarcastic, and lovable little guy. The sitcom delivered interesting plots and no shortage of laughs, and it never needed to add objectional material, allowing it to excel at entertaining the whole family.

So, after all these years of the DVD industry thriving, and television sets being quite the hit, my dream of "ALF" on DVD in season sets finally has come true. I'd anticipated the release of this first season DVD set like few others, and when the day arrived, I made my trek to the store with excitement.

First, the good news. All twenty-five episodes from the wonderful debut season of the show are presented here, with commendable picture and sound quality, and chapter stops. The menus are hosted by ALF himself and are clever, easy to navigate, and remarkably amusing. There's even a few genuinely interesting bonus features on Disc 4, in the way of a Gag Reel, Trivia Facts, and an alternate pilot.

The bad news is, as a few other reviews have mentioned by now, is that the show is not presented in its original form. I thought that the 21-minute running times were a bit on the slight side, and it turns out that Lions Gate has released syndication edits of episodes, lopping off several minutes from each show. Why this decision was made, I have no idea. It's a terrible choice, and one which taints an otherwise delightful release.
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First season ep where Alf talks to the president of the US
Hi, I'd like to know if this dvds have spanish audio, any help will be appreciated
Jan 1, 2008 by Marco |  See all 2 posts
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