675 of 708 people found the following review helpful
Since I notice all the questions seem to concern the logistics of the set, that is the main thing I will address in this review, since you would have to be a resident of another planet to not know the story behind the series "Friends". Suffice it to say it is a classic comic treatment of what I have always called the "post-college adolescent phase" of life, which is roughly the ten years immediately following college graduation as you strike out on your own and try to find your place in life. It is the time in life when you are likely to have the best health, the most freedom, the most disposable income if not necessarily the most total income, and the most fun if you are fortunate enough to have people to share it all with. This phase ends when you "settle down" both career-wise and family-wise, and I always found Friends to track this time in life quite accurately and with both drama and great humor.
As for logistics, this collection fits in a sturdy red box that's less than a foot long. There are 40 DVDs containing 236 episodes that can be found inside. The Friends set just has two pieces of the box that comes together. Flipping the top up exposes the guts of the set consisting of 6 books, with one for each Friend. Thus there are only 6 books to hold the 10 seasons. Each book has a picture of the Friend, a number (1-6), and the episodes you can find in each case. The books flip open from the top, and each disc has its own pouch in the double-sided pages. Every disc has a different photo of the Friend, and they're all inserted into the pouches so that the photo is visible as you flip through the book. The disc number and episode numbers are also visible. The contents of the discs are the same as the previous sets, but they have new artwork.
Besides the packaging, there's just one thing to note for this release, that being the episode guide booklet. This 60 page booklet lists every episode with its synopsis and the disc you can find it on. Of course, the bonus material is mentioned along with the disc it can be found on, and the bonus features include 25 documentaries. You'll also get the original treatment for the series written by David Crane and Marta Kauffman. The booklet, which is as wide as the box, can be found behind the DVD books.
As for screen format, it's full screen, which is what Friends was filmed in. The full screen ratio is 4:3, which is the same as 1.33:1. You can record in wide screen and chop off parts of the frame to make it fit a traditional 4:3 TV, which is what is done with full screen editions of movies. However, you can't add stuff to a frame that was recorded in 4:3 and make it widescreen.
There's very little of value here for someone who already has the season 1-10 boxes, and the book with the episode information is just an upgraded version of the booklets that come with the season sets. If you don't already own the 10 seasons then this is an easy way to buy the show since it is a lot cheaper than buying each set individually. It's also nicer than the box set released last year, which was the existing 10 seasons in a big box. If you decide to replace your existing sets then you'll be happy to know the set takes up exactly the same amount of shelf space.
923 of 987 people found the following review helpful
on September 14, 2012
I'm a huge fan of "Friends," in fact it's probably my favorite TV show of all time. Interestingly, I didn't start watching the show until it was in its 9th season. I dismissed it as a "chick show," but when I finally started catching re-runs when I was in college, it had me rolling! It was right at this point that they began releasing the full seasons on DVD. So every time a new season was released on DVD I went right out and bought it. The first time that I saw many of these episodes (probably 80% of the series) was on DVD. For those of you that don't know this, the DVDs actually contained longer episodes than what had been originally broadcast on NBC. Each 20-minute episode contained another 2 or 3 minutes of dialogue/story. And it wasn't excessive stuff that needed to be cut, many of my favorite lines in the show were in these extended scenes. In fact, when I go back and watch re-runs of the show now I can't believe how much of it is missing. I still love my DVDs though, special features and all! But when I watch them now on my 47" TV I notice that they look pretty rough. There's lots of pixelation and fuzziness, and the episodes aren't formatted for widescreen. Certain channels have been showing the episodes in HD and they look gorgeous! I thought to myself, "I would actually buy the whole series over again on Blu-Ray if it had all the extended episodes and bonus features from the standard DVD set."
When I learned that "Friends" was coming to Blu-Ray I was so excited, I couldn't wait to get my hands on it. Then I learned that this Blu-Ray boxed set would not contain the previously released extended episodes, but would instead have them as they appeared in the original NBC broadcast. Warner Home Video's reason for this is as follows: "The extended cuts were special versions created for the DVDs and no longer exist in a form that could be used for a Blu-ray release." ...What does THAT mean? You can transfer the short episodes but not the long ones? That makes no sense! Whatever was done to clean up the episodes that they've been showing on TV in HD, they can do for the extended episodes. I think someone just got lazy and decided this would be good enough. While I desperately want my favorite show in HD, I will not fork out over $200 for an inferior product! I know these (extended) episodes like the back of my hand, and I won't be able to truly enjoy the show with the absence of so many great scenes and lines. I'd rather watch bad resolution "Friends" in its entirety than watch a cleaned up abridged version. The only reason I'm giving this 2 stars is because it's still an awesome show, and for casual fans this might be enough. However, for fans like me this will simply not do. This reminds me of George Lucas only releasing the versions of Star Wars that nobody likes, or Peter Jackson putting out The Lord Of The Rings trilogy on Blu-Ray but waiting over a year to put out the extended versions. Warner Home Video won't be getting my money this time. Try again, guys!
371 of 414 people found the following review helpful
on July 3, 2012
For fans of FRIENDS you will know what episode is below. For everyone else, the below lines from the script are from episode 809, season 8: The Rumor (The one with Brad Pitt at Thanksgiving). Everything with a star next to it will NOT be in the FRIENDS Blu-ray Broadcast version.
Phoebe: Turkey's are beautiful, intelligent animals!
Joey: No they're not! They're ugly and stupid and delicious! *Plus, eating them is like a tradition. It goes back to the very first Thanksgiving when the Indians sat down with the cowboys
*Rachel: Oh right... That's when they had that big rodeo at Plymouth Rock.
Ross: Uh actually, there was also that exchange student from Thailand but I don't think he knew what it was.
*Chandler: (sarcastically) You guys were cool.
Rachel: So Ross, we went out for two years, and you never told me you were in an I Hate Rachel club.
Will: You went out with her?! We had a pact!
Ross: That was in high school! It's not like it was binding forever.
Will: Then why did it have the word eternity in it?
*Joey: I'm thinking of joining an "I Hate Turkey Club"... although I do love a turkey club.
Rachel: Joey stop staring! There's nothing there! It's not true!
Joey: I'm afraid I'm gonna need proof. *C'mon, whip it out.
*Monica: (To Chandler and Phoebe) Alright, guys, could you help me with the dishes? There's a lot of pots and pans.
*Chandler: Oh honey I'd love to but the second game's about to start so... (starts to get up)
*Phoebe: (getting up with him) Oh yeah, the second game. More football for the Phoebster
*Monica: Who's playing?
*Chandler: Los Angeles
*Monica: Wow, last time I checked, Los Angeles didn't have a football team.
*Chandler: Did I say Los Angeles? I meant the team that used to be in Los Angeles and now in St. Louis. (whispers to
Phoebe) I actually knew that.
*Monica: Ok, quick. Name three players on that team.
*Chandler: Gretzky... Agassi (struggles to think of a third, then to Phoebe) I'm a pretty little girl. (Monica Throws him a tea-towel)
Monica: It's true?!!
Rachel: Yes it is! I saw you guys going at it behind the card catalog!
*Ross: Hey! What were you doing in the library?
*Rachel: They had magazines!
Will: Yeah! (They high-five.) Shall I call a meeting.
*Ross: Is everybody present?
*Will: With the exception of Takaka.
Phoebe: I wanna join!
That is just an example of one episode. There is a site out there which has the script to each episode and what will be missing from them in this broadcast version. Amazon will not let me post the site, however I will try it this way...
As Amazon keeps deleting my link, feel free to comment on my review and I can e-mail it to you.
I am a huge FRIENDS fan and I am very disapointed in this, however I do still plan on purchasing this Blu-ray set once it greatly goes down in price.
*** Update ***
I ended up purchasing and importing the UK edition of FRIENDS on Blu-ray because I liked the UK packaging much better, plus it was about half the price of the US version at the time.
When I first popped the disc in and started watching I was presented with a nice HD picture and sound and I appreciate all the care they took in bringing Friends to Blu for us. Sadly I am very upset, and more bothered than I thought I would be, in all I know I am missing by simply watching these broadcast versions. There is a lot cut out and even the basic cutting of scenes is quicker and made to fit a commercial in. I love the show and I have enjoyed watching them all over again, however I miss the little jokes they cut out. Over-all I am glad I own it, however I really hope one day the will release the extended cuts on Blu-ray!
353 of 397 people found the following review helpful
on December 12, 2007
I love this show but I am returning this box set and decided to order the individual seasons separately for the following reasons:
1) Many of the DVDs are faulty and skip even when they are not physically scratched. I tested this with multiple DVD players which have never given me problems before. If you check other reviews this quality control issue is pretty common with the DVDs from this box set. From what I can tell the quality control on the original season sets is much better.
2) Disc 28 was missing and I got two copies of Disc 29 instead.
3) The corner of the collector's box was broken/damaged when i received it.
4) The discs are spread out through 6 scratch-prone cardboard-like sleeves for each character instead of by Season. Cute, but i don't want to have to open up a damn episode guide and look up the episode number to figure out which season i'm about to watch, while worrying about scratching my DVDs when taking them in and out of the sleeves.
60 of 67 people found the following review helpful
on November 13, 2012
Got the "Friends" boxed blu ray set today and I love it!
I know the controversy surrounding the release of this set, but it honestly does not phase me. When I first saw the episodes when they aired, these were the versions I saw. When the DVD set came out, yes, it was a wonderful bonus to have the extended episodes...but that was it, a bonus. I intend to keep my DVD box set of the complete series, so I can revisit the extended episodes as I wish...but the difference in picture and sound on these blu ray discs is amazing...just like seeing them again for the first time.
As of this writing, I have only watched 2 of the first season episodes. I have watched the bonus disc in its entirety.
What's in the box:
First off, the box is made of a VERY sturdy, thick glossy cardboard. The cover is a lenticular cover which shows the cast in the first season at one angle, and the last season at another angle. This box is held shut by magnets and opens like a chest. When opened, you will find a glossy 40 page episode guide inside with a synopsis of each episode, photos from the episodes, and some cool extra photos. Underneath this booklet, there is another very sturdy cardboard book that houses the 21 discs. There are 2 discs per page with the bonus disc being by itself on the last page of the book. The book is also held closed with magnets as the box is. A ribbon is attached to the inside of the box with these items resting on top of it, so pulling the ribbon raises the items up for easy removal.
What's on the bonus disc:
Friends From the Start: Approx 30 min, features the creation/origins of "Friends" with many of the creators of the show discussing how the show started, casting, creating the sets, etc.
When Friends Become Family: Approx 30 min, again featuring creators discussing how everything came together and how the show exploded into the culture
Legacy of Friends: Approx 12 min, focuses on the impact that "Friends" had and still has, and shows some emotional footage of the filming of the last episode and tearing down the set
Producer's Cut of "The One Where Rachel Tells Ross": Approx 24 min, this is the originally planned/filmed episode that was filmed prior to the 9/11 attacks, featuring a sub-plot where Chandler makes a joke about having a bomb as he and Monica are about to board the plane for their honeymoon.
Original Script for "The One Where Rachel Tells Ross", just as described
Music Video for The Rembrandts' "I'll Be There for You"
Short clips of "Friends" on "The Ellen DeGeneres Show", approx 15 min. Features clips of David Schwimmer, Jennifer Aniston, Matt LeBlanc, Lisa Kudrow and Matthew Perry on "Ellen", each appearing individually
Short clips of "Friends" on "The Tonight Show", approx 23 min. Features the men of "Friends" first, sitting with Jay Leno on a recreation of the Central Perk set, discussing the ride of being on the show. The women appear next, then the men are brought out for a full reunion. This was filmed not long after the airing of the final episode, so it's not anything new.
Previously Unreleased Gag Reel, approx 8 min.
I, for one, am thrilled to have bought this. I think some people may be confusing "broadcast" with "syndicated", so just for the record, these are the original broadcast episodes. There is nothing cut from when they originally aired. The episodes on the DVD had footage ADDED to them that was never shown before. Again, I will keep my DVD box set to watch the extended episodes from time to time, but the blu rays will be my main "go to" for the show as they look and sound fantastic in high def.
I have uploaded photos of the box and contents.
206 of 240 people found the following review helpful
on August 28, 2012
Please be aware that these episodes will NOT be the versions found on the DVD sets. They will be the originally broadcast versions, missing quite a bit of footage that was added for the DVD release (some wonderful jokes, scenes, and moments). Unfortunately, I will not be purchasing this set - I'd rather have DVD quality visuals and the full extended versions I am used to and love, rather than jarring missing footage.
(To be fair, this set will show the episodes as originally intended, but I never watched them on TV when they aired originally, so for me, it is a deal breaker.)
100 of 116 people found the following review helpful
on November 15, 2012
For anyone who thinks that these episodes are cut, please read this review from Gord Lacey at tvshowsondvd(dot)com:
"Alright, let's deal with the "elephant in the room." You may have read, or heard that these episodes are cut. That's completely false. These are the original airings of the episodes (with a couple exceptions, which I'll get to later) that were seen on NBC. If you sat down to watch the show on "Must See TV" Thursdays, this is what you would have seen, except it's in HD (and widescreen). When Warner Bros released this on DVD, years ago, they added material - stuff that was deleted from the episodes for whatever reason. When you create a TV show you log everything - all the shots, the timecode, everything. It's well-documented, and finding the material you need again is a relatively easy task. Unfortunately that wasn't the case with the extended episodes; records weren't kept, timecode didn't exist. That makes the task of finding the material to recreate the extended episodes a daunting task; one that likely would have made Friends on Blu-ray financial unfeasible. I think a good comparison would be what CBS is going through with Star Trek: The Next Generation, except that they're recreating episodes in HD that can bring them other financial revenue streams, while Friends would have to recoup everything from this one set. I think the irony here is that if Warner Bros didn't go to the trouble to create the extended episodes for the DVDs, there wouldn't be any issue with this Blu-ray set. I've gone through the entire set and noted the times of every episode, which you can find at the end of this review (I think I need a new remote now).
There were 4 "Super-Sized" episodes in season 7, and while those longer episodes aren't here in HD, they entire episodes are available as SD bonus material. Those are the only episodes that differ from the "broadcast night" versions."
[Taken from: tvshowsondvd(dot)com]
See, it's not so bad. If they would have gone through to find all the episodes that they extended, it would have taken them much longer and the cost would have been astronomical!
Long story short, amazing to see in HD like on TBS/Nick at Nite. If you already have the series on DVD, then maybe you'd be happier with what you have and not buying this Blu-ray set. However, if you have been like me and waiting for the Widescreen HD episodes, then this does just fine. They are pretty much the same as what you'd see on your local TV station's syndicated version or on TBS/Nick at Nite.
33 of 36 people found the following review helpful
on November 19, 2015
I respect everyone's opinion, but the 5 star reviews must be coming form those who haven't seen this show much or who are extremely easy to please. There are two problems here. One of them I can live with, and one of them drives me absolutely insane. First, the Blu Ray quality leaves lot to be desired, The video is very grainy. I can live with that, though. The major issue is that these are not full episodes. That is absolutely inexcusable for a "complete series". That is false advertising. This is three quarters of a series at best. The whole point of having this collection, for me, is having the complete uncut episodes in HD. The complete seasons on DVD that many of us have include the full unedited episodes. I thought I was getting the same thing, but on Blu Ray. Not the case. Some of these are even shorter than their respective tv airings. They don't just cut parts of scenes or a few lines here and there, they cut entire scenes, and it's some of the best material of the episode. Extremely disappointed.
41 of 46 people found the following review helpful
on November 12, 2013
As others have mentioned, these are the broadcast versions and are missing a lot of the funniest parts of the series. The reason given by WB is that those were special for DVD and can't be done again for Blu-Ray. That's total bull squirt. If they could be done for DVD, they could be done for Blu-Ray. WB chose not to do them, most likely with eyes toward a double-dip on people's wallets down the road. I know the DVD versions by heart, and even when I watch the occasional syndicated version on television I know exactly when something has been cut, and it pretty much always makes the episode worse. I refuse to let them keep my money for this set, and will not make a purchase until they do it correctly with the extended episodes. They can save this sub-standard tripe for the trash heap.
62 of 72 people found the following review helpful
on March 12, 2013
Blu-ray picture is amazing and that's a given when you buy a product in Blu-ray. As for the poor excuse to revert back to the original aired versions while for years I have been watching the extended ones on DVD, I'm very unhappy. It's my fault that I didn't research this before purchasing the set but if I had known before, I never would have spent the money on it. I'm only on season 3 and am contemplating not even watching anymore of them. Great quality picture is not worth the sacrifice of so many amazing jokes and scenes. I can't stand listening to it knowing a joke is missing. Poor performance to Warner Home Video. If the series can be made on DVD then it can also be made on Blu-ray. It should be worth the time and money to satisfy the true fans. Needless to say, I'm pissed!