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196 of 200 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Series and Great Packaging!!
There's really no need to expound on the fantastic qualities of "Homicide." Anyone who has seen the series or is contemplating purchasing it without ever having seen many episodes will know from other reviews how terrific it was. My chief concern when thinking of ordering the repackaged set concerned how it is packaged. Several other complete series editions (Sopranos,...
Published on November 18, 2009 by J. Barbour

versus
16 of 18 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Disappointed
I'll get right to the point.

No CC. Makes it tough as my hearing is going, and there is a lot of mumbling going on.

They didn't even take the time to put the episodes in order.

Shame on you A&E and NBC.
Published on August 11, 2011 by cicero grimes


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196 of 200 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Series and Great Packaging!!, November 18, 2009
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Homicide: Life on the Street - The Complete Series (DVD)
There's really no need to expound on the fantastic qualities of "Homicide." Anyone who has seen the series or is contemplating purchasing it without ever having seen many episodes will know from other reviews how terrific it was. My chief concern when thinking of ordering the repackaged set concerned how it is packaged. Several other complete series editions (Sopranos, The Shield, etc.) have chosen to insert the DVDs into stiff and coarse cardboard slots. This has resulted in serious scuffs and scratches that have often rendered a disc (or multiple discs) unplayable. Not so with this set. Each season has been packaged in a slimline style case, and not one disc has so much as a smudge or mini-scratch on it. I'm looking at 35 pristine "mirrors." So, if anyone out there is debating whether or not to order this newest set of Homicide because of packaging concerns you are cleared for takeoff. It doesn't get any better than this. Go for it (and enjoy).
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162 of 175 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The ultimate collection for Homicide fans, September 30, 2006
Even though the series has been off the air for going on eight years, "Homicide" is still very popular with serious web discussion forums of this series still going on.

This is the collection that every "Homicide: Life on the Street" fan has been waiting for. It include all 122 episodes of the seven seasons of the original series, the Law and Order cross-over episodes, plus the movie "Another Homicide" that aired in February 2000 and was the last we fans ever got to see of our beloved series. Also, it is much more reasonably priced than the other DVD collections of "Homicide" available up to now. The movie isn't even available on DVD.

For those of you who are unfamiliar, "Homicide" was an original crime drama that aired on NBC between January 1993 and May 1999. It was based on David Simon's book, "Homicide: A Year on the Killing Streets", which was based upon Simon's experiences in 1988 when he spent a year as a civilian assistant to the Baltimore Police Homicide Unit so that he could document what life was like in a big city homicide squad. His extensive notes, interviews, and observations were eventually published as the book.

Much of the cases chronicled in the first two seasons of the show are adapted from actual events in the book. The first two seasons focus on rookie Tim Bayliss's first case - the murder of 11 year-old Adina Watson whose murder is never solved and haunts him for the duration of the series. The original cast was truly brilliant, but to get a third full season the show's producers had to delete veteran actor Jon Polito (Crosetti) from the cast and pretty up the cast by adding Isabella Hoffman as shift supervisor Megan Russert.

There was an entire episode, perhaps the best of the series, dedicated to detective Crosetti's suicide at the beginning of season three. Crosetti left no note, and apparently had no huge looming problems in his life. He just chose to fill himself with alcohol, tranquilizers, and antidepressants and then throw himself into the Chesapeake rather than return to his job after his vacation, in spite of his deeply held religious beliefs that would make you think this is a choice he would never have made. This is one thing you'll see on Homicide time and time again - the writers are not afraid to leave the tough questions unanswered...forever.

Season four is also great, although two more original castmembers depart - Beau Felton and Stan Bolander. The two additions to the cast include Mike Kellerman, whose boyish, fun-loving exterior hides a cagey and complex detective with a penchant for self destruction. He is transferred from arson to homicide as a result of the help he renders on closing the case of an arson-related homicide when a dead body is found in a burned warehouse. Also, J. H. Brodie, a news cameraman who is fired because he gives a tape showing the attacker of an elderly woman to the police rather than to the station for which he works, is also added to the cast. He is apparently meant to be an analog of David Simon. The only problem is, Simon took great pains to keep himself out of the story while Brodie is constantly included in the plot, making him a somewhat awkward although likeable addition.

By season five, the "NYPD-Blueing" of Homicide is becoming a bit more pronounced. Never having stellar ratings, the series was forced by the network to show less detective work and gritty realism and more of the personal lives of the cast members. Still, the episodes are excellent. In this season, Michelle Forbes, the new M.E. with a "Queen of the Dead" vibe, speeds into town and becomes involved with Mike Kellerman. Frank Pembleton is shown recovering from the stroke he had at the end of season four and struggling to return to full duty. Elijah Wood stars as a the spoiled sociopath son of a Baltimore judge who believes he can get away with anything, including plotting the murder of his own judge mother. Finally, there is the apparent suicide of a long-since departed detective that turns out to be a murder.

Season six is where things begin to go downhill in the show. At the conclusion of season five it was determined that detectives would rotate between departments. This was used as a vehicle to introduce three largely uninteresting and even unlikeable castmembers - Det. Ballard who actually comes from a Seattle homicide unit, Det. Paul Falsone and Det. Stu Gharty. Falsone always came across as a sneak and Stu Gharty had already been shown up as a coward in an episode from a previous season. Melissa Leo's character, Kay Howard, is now completely evicted from the series. Still, there are some interesting developments. In "Subway" Pembleton gets an opportunity to speak with the dead for a change rather than for them. Bayliss, at the ripe old age of 37, decides to explore other facets of his sexuality, much to the surprise of Pembleton. Kellerman's execution/shooting of arch-criminal Luther Mahoney in the previous season leads to all out war between the police and Mahoney's family that ends up in a shootout in the squad room and also with Bayliss taking a bullet for Pembleton. Both Pembleton and Kellerman resign from the force.

Season seven is largely forgettable. Bayliss has converted to Buddhism following his brush with death and becomes "The Zen Detective". Giardello's son joins the cast as liason between Baltimore PD and the FBI, although the two look more like brothers than father and son - the age separation is just not there, and neither is any semblance of a believable family connection. Michael Michele joins the cast as ex beauty queen/detective Rene Sheppard and does as good a job of helping this show jump the shark as Ted McGinley could have ever hoped to do.

The main episodes from season seven worth watching include those that wrap up Mike Kellerman's story after his exile at the end of season six - the two parter "Kellerman P.I". There are also the episodes that further Tim Bayliss' character development where he is forced to shoot the killer of a Buddhist monk in self defense - "Zen and the Art of Murder". The other storyline worth watching involve episodes on the Internet killer, who is released on a technicality but vows to Bayliss that he will kill again. These two storylines - the Internet killer being freed and Tim discovering that he can kill if he has to - collide in the excellent series finale "Forgive Us Our Trespasses".

The movie aired about nine months after the series finale and has Giardello running for mayor. He is shot by a man whose son is addicted to drugs who does not like Giardello's stand on drugs as more of a treatment problem than a crime problem. The entire cast from the series - and I mean everybody - shows up in this film. Besides helping solve the case, Pembleton gets to hear one more confession - that of Bayliss admitting to the shooting of the Internet killer and demanding that Pembleton "bring him in". This is a crime that Bayliss' heart can get past but his head cannot. As a final revelation, we discover that the dead have ready access to coffee, but not expresso.
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111 of 122 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the finest TV series ever aired, June 11, 2009
This review is from: Homicide: Life on the Street - The Complete Series (DVD)
I will warn you that this review contains spoilers.

This is the collection that every "Homicide: Life on the Street" fan has been waiting for - and got - back in 2006. For some reason it is being rereleased and repackaged. It includes all 122 episodes of the seven seasons of the original series, the Law and Order cross-over episodes, plus the movie "Another Homicide" that aired in February 2000 and was the last we fans ever got to see of our beloved series.

For those of you who are unfamiliar, "Homicide" was an original crime drama that aired on NBC between January 1993 and May 1999. It was based on David Simon's book, "Homicide: A Year on the Killing Streets", which was based upon Simon's experiences in 1988 when he spent a year as a civilian assistant to the Baltimore Police Homicide Unit so that he could document what life was like in a big city homicide squad. His extensive notes, interviews, and observations were eventually published as the book.

Much of the cases chronicled in the first two seasons of the show are adapted from actual events in the book. The first two seasons focus on rookie Tim Bayliss's first case - the murder of 11 year-old Adina Watson whose murder is never solved and haunts him for the duration of the series. The original cast was truly brilliant, but to get a third full season the show's producers had to delete veteran actor Jon Polito (Crosetti) from the cast and pretty up the cast by adding Isabella Hoffman as shift supervisor Megan Russert.

There was an entire episode, perhaps the best of the series, dedicated to detective Crosetti's suicide at the beginning of season three. Crosetti left no note, and apparently had no huge looming problems in his life. He just chose to fill himself with alcohol, tranquilizers, and antidepressants and then throw himself into the Chesapeake rather than return to his job after his vacation, in spite of his deeply held religious beliefs that would make you think this is a choice he would never have made. This is one thing you'll see on Homicide time and time again - the writers are not afraid to leave the tough questions unanswered...forever.

Season four is also great, although two more original castmembers depart - Beau Felton and Stan Bolander. The two additions to the cast include Mike Kellerman, whose boyish, fun-loving exterior hides a cagey and complex detective with a penchant for self destruction. He is transferred from arson to homicide as a result of the help he renders on closing the case of an arson-related homicide when a dead body is found in a burned warehouse. Also, J. H. Brodie, a news cameraman who is fired because he gives a tape showing the attacker of an elderly woman to the police rather than to the station for which he works, is also added to the cast. He is apparently meant to be an analog of David Simon. The only problem is, Simon took great pains to keep himself out of the story while Brodie is constantly included in the plot, making him a somewhat awkward although likeable addition.

By season five, the "NYPD-Blueing" of Homicide is becoming a bit more pronounced. Never having stellar ratings, the series was forced by the network to show less detective work and gritty realism and more of the personal lives of the cast members. Still, the episodes are excellent. In this season, Michelle Forbes, the new M.E. with a "Queen of the Dead" vibe, speeds into town and becomes involved with Mike Kellerman. Frank Pembleton is shown recovering from the stroke he had at the end of season four and struggling to return to full duty. Elijah Wood stars as a the spoiled sociopath son of a Baltimore judge who believes he can get away with anything, including plotting the murder of his own judge mother. Finally, there is the apparent suicide of a long-since departed detective that turns out to be a murder.

Season six is where things begin to go downhill in the show. At the conclusion of season five it was determined that detectives would rotate between departments. This was used as a vehicle to introduce three largely uninteresting and even unlikeable castmembers - Det. Ballard who actually comes from a Seattle homicide unit, Det. Paul Falsone and Det. Stu Gharty. Falsone always came across as a sneak and Stu Gharty had already been shown up as a coward in an episode from a previous season. Melissa Leo's character, Kay Howard, is now completely evicted from the series. Still, there are some interesting developments. In "Subway" Pembleton gets an opportunity to speak with the dead for a change rather than for them. Bayliss, at the ripe old age of 37, decides to explore other facets of his sexuality, much to the surprise of Pembleton. Kellerman's execution/shooting of arch-criminal Luther Mahoney in the previous season leads to all out war between the police and Mahoney's family that ends up in a shootout in the squad room and also with Bayliss taking a bullet for Pembleton. Both Pembleton and Kellerman resign from the force.

Season seven is largely forgettable. Bayliss has converted to Buddhism following his brush with death and becomes "The Zen Detective". Giardello's son joins the cast as liason between Baltimore PD and the FBI, although the two look more like brothers than father and son - the age separation is just not there, and neither is any semblance of a believable family connection. Michael Michele joins the cast as ex beauty queen/detective Rene Sheppard and does as good a job of helping this show jump the shark as Ted McGinley could have ever hoped to do.

The main episodes from season seven worth watching include those that wrap up Mike Kellerman's story after his exile at the end of season six - the two parter "Kellerman P.I". There are also the episodes that further Tim Bayliss' character development where he is forced to shoot the killer of a Buddhist monk in self defense - "Zen and the Art of Murder". The other storyline worth watching involve episodes on the Internet killer, who is released on a technicality but vows to Bayliss that he will kill again. These two storylines - the Internet killer being freed and Tim discovering that he can kill if he has to - collide in the excellent series finale "Forgive Us Our Trespasses".

The movie aired about nine months after the series finale and has Giardello running for mayor. He is shot by a man whose son is addicted to drugs who does not like Giardello's stand on drugs as more of a treatment problem than a crime problem. The entire cast from the series - and I mean everybody - shows up in this film. Besides helping solve the case, Pembleton gets to hear one more confession - that of Bayliss admitting to the shooting of the Internet killer and demanding that Pembleton "bring him in". This is a crime that Bayliss' heart can get past but his head cannot. As a final revelation, we discover that the dead have ready access to coffee, but not expresso.
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38 of 41 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars best cop show ever produced...just one little annoyance, December 13, 2006
I waited with baited breath for this to come out.I never missed an episode first run and to find a program that me AND the wife liked was a rarety in itself!

I'm almost all the way through this set now and the ONLY problem i have with this is that...well...its 2006 and technology certainly exists to have included captions for the hearing impaired.I'm deaf in one ear and have to turn the volume WAY up or I won't really catch everything.So...i watch in the daytime when i got the house to myself.It never occurred to me to even check,i assumed that darn near all DVD's released in the great new millenium would have that.

oh well...live and learn.

That having been said...(whinewhinewhine)...the complexities of the characters on this show are so brilliantly written AND acted that viewing this set should be mandatory!
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31 of 33 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best ever cop show, ever!, August 6, 2009
By 
crusty (Oxford, England) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Homicide: Life on the Street - The Complete Series (DVD)
This is, without doubt, the best ever cop show bar none. Better even than the Wire, excellent though that is. The character development throughout the series is wonderful, the dialogue is intelligent and witty, and the plot lines weave wonderfully behind the relationships which are in fact the main point of the show. In the best possible way it is in fact a cop soap!
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32 of 36 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars seven seasons for less than the price of two..., December 15, 2006
Sweet baby Jesus! 35 DVDs, 122 episodes, plenty of juicy bonus features... it's all seven seasons of Homicide for less than the price of two, all packaged in a super-cool faux filing cabinet. This is one of the most critically acclaimed TV series of all time, and for plenty of good reasons. Warning: You will never want to watch another episode of CSI again. (You can thank me later...)
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars OUTSTANDING, January 9, 2007
By 
Irish Guy (United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
One of the most important and ground breaking police dramas ever to apear on network television, this set is a MUST! The packaging is ingenious, the extras provide a lot of insight into the making of the show and it's struggle to remain on the air for 7 seasons, something of a miracle, given that the producers stuck to their guns and refused to dumb down the fast paced, quick talking formula that had many ongoing cases and plots carry over for multiple episodes (something that can be offputting to mass audiences and perhaps prevented the show from becoming a monster hit ratings-wise).

Throughly recommended, this boxset will disappoint neither old time fans or newcomers who appreciate intelligent drama.
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16 of 18 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Disappointed, August 11, 2011
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Homicide: Life on the Street - The Complete Series (DVD)
I'll get right to the point.

No CC. Makes it tough as my hearing is going, and there is a lot of mumbling going on.

They didn't even take the time to put the episodes in order.

Shame on you A&E and NBC.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great show, Great Price, Extras, Great Packaging, December 10, 2006
By 
Ape (Hicksville, NY United States) - See all my reviews
I already own seasons 1-5 of Homicide (gifts), but this set (purchased for approx. $150 w/ no tax or shipping charges) costs less than if I purchased seasons 6 & 7 seperately. Plus, it includes the 3 Law & Order tie-in episodes and the Homicide:The Movie tv movie which is very hard to find. The kicker was the packaging. It comes in a box shaped like a file cabinet drawer like the detectives on the show had in their desks and in the squad room. Awesome
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great package for one of the best shows ever., April 6, 2007
By 
What a great show! I have been a huge fan of "Homicide: Life on the Street" since it originally aired on NBC. In fact during the '90s, HLOTS was the one show that was "appointment TV" for me. (I regularly taped new episodes, since it was on Friday nights and I was often out due to being single & in my 20s.) HLOTS still rates as my favorite network series of all time (closely behind my all-time fav show, "Homicide's" grittier 'younger brother', HBO's "The Wire" - the best show on TV).

What made this show so good were the intelligent writing and the great acting. Unlike most cop shows, it focused on character development of the detectives, instead of on gunfights and car chases. The actors looked like cops, not like models. The show was more about the inner workings of the "murder police", than it was the crimes themselves. And the cases weren't conveniently solved at the end of each episode. In fact, many of the cases were remained unsolved. It is far more realistic than the standard cop show (like the ridiculously phony CSI franchise).

HLOTS featured one of the strongest casts ever on network television, led by the outstanding Andre Braugher. It also featured many guest starring appearances by outstanding actors like James Earl Jones, Robin Williams, Steve Buscemi, Edie Falco, Isaiah Washington, Lily Tomlin, Steve Allen, and many, many more.

"Homicide" was also ground breaking in its fast paced editing, with lots of Jump cuts. The show was shot (especially the earlier seasons) to have the look & feel of a documentary. Much of the early shows were shot with hand held cameras using 16mm film. It's not as obvious now (because so many shows have since adopted this style), but this show looked like nothing else on TV in 1993.

Like some others who have posted, I already owned some the individual sets (Seasons 1&2, Season 3, and Season 4.) However, it was actually cheaper to buy the mega-set than to buy even 2 of the 3 seasons I didn't already own. Plus, as noted above, the mega-set includes a bonus disc with the "Law & Order" cross over episodes and the now out of print "Homicide: the Movie." And the packaging is very cool! The individual seasons had somewhat the look of case files. The mega-set takes this theme to a new level, packaging the sets in a sturdy File Cabinet box, with "tabs" separating each season's "file".

The show looks great on DVD, has great sound, and each season features commentary on one episode plus some type of "behind the scenes" feature. Of particular note is the Season 6 set which includes the outstanding PBS documentary "Anatomy of a Homicide". These extras give great insight on how the show came together.

I only have a couple of very minor complaints. Seasons 1-4 include song listings for each episode (music was featured prominently on the series). Starting with Season 5, the song listings are dropped. But, Seasons 5-7 include the "Previously On..." content that originally aired with the episodes. It would be nice to have both the song listings AND the "previously ons" for all the seasons. But this is how the discs were originally packaged for the individual season sets. Also, in a perfect world, it would be nice to have the L&O episodes on the same discs as the corresponding HLOTS episodes. But I know that it would be unrealistic to expect A&E to make new discs for this set, since they were just repackaging the existing discs into a new set.

Bottom line, if you've never seen "Homicide", but you like intelligent drama, great writing, and superb acting, check it out! And if you're a fan of the show, you already know how good it is, so get it already! Either way, I highly recommend getting this set. It is an inexpensive way to own the whole series and it's nicely packaged.
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Homicide: Life on the Street - The Complete Series
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