on April 1, 2013
Let's face it, most of us, when buying an entire series, want it to be of high quality, reasonably priced, complete with all episodes and a minimum amount of extraneous "additional" features, i.e. pamphlets, photos and other stuff that may raise the cost of the purchase and which most of us don't want and won't read anyway. I mean, after all is said and done we just want to watch the programs.
I have throughly enjoyed this set. The discs were all there when I opened the set (you'd be surprized how often a disc is missing or duplicated leaving the set incomplete) and there was a very brief synopsis of each episode within the DVD case.
The subtitles were in English and Spanish and were "almost" verbatim to the dialog unlike some subtitles that I have experienced where the subtitle replaces whole phrases and words and really has nothing to do with what the actor had just said.
Disc one of each Season also included "Special Features" for which I can't tell you what the features covered as I don't watch them. Just wanted to mention that they exist.
Although there was a small pamphlet contained in the set it was not too burdensome to the reader. One part, "House-isms," was very funny and I had heard them used, some of them many, many times, throughout the series. The main characters (House, Cuddy & Wilson) comment on their characters character and how they interact with each other. There is also a Season & Episode guide to help you find a special episode without having to open and search each DVD case. There is a section that addresses the ideas of how House was developed as well as how the characters were developed. There are also some quotes, from the famous and not-so-famous. The average time to read the pamphlet is about 20-30 minutes if you stop to think and consider what you've just read :-)
Bottom line: House, The Complete Series is well put together and worth the cost. I have recommended this set to several of my friends and family who like this series as much as I do. BUT, I had an ulterior motive for recommending this set so strongly, I don't want to lend my set to ANYONE no matter if they were friend and/or family. To lend this set is just setting me up to have arguments due to a disc being returned with a scratch/scratches, being returned with one or more discs missing or other damage that can happen. So....rather than go through stressful arguments I ALWAYS recommend and NEVER loan.
Just in case I have been too subtle let me just say, BUY House: The Complete Series! It's worth the money and then some!
on January 2, 2015
In terms of pros, everything is there. Every episode in stunning 1080p and sounds great. There really isn't much else to add in that regard, no duplicated or missing discs. So it's exactly what you're ordering.
There are a couple of nit-picks though. There is no episode guide in this set, even the blu-rays themselves don't have episode names when you're playing the discs, only numbers. So you'll need to know your House episodes when looking for a specific episode. The special features are what you'll find on the individual DVD releases, nothing new here.
Each individual season is in it's own blu-ray case stacked inside the box, the only gripe I've got is that the blu-ray cases are kinda hard to close. They're built exactly like those older plastic VHS cases. You have to pull the cover of the case and pinch the sides to close it, kinda like a pizza box. It's an odd choice to go back to. It's by no means a big deal, just worth noting.
Also, this release does not feature the Teardrop by Massive Attack theme song, only the same theme song you'll hear on the Netflix releases.
Overall - I'm happy to actually have this entire collection in High Definition on a physical media. I've watched this show a dozen times and will probably watch it a few dozen more.
HOUSE, M.D. may be the finest dramatic series ever to play on American commercial television, or close to it. The creators of this eight-year-long Fox show cleverly began with a fusion of medical procedural/forensic themes from earlier hit series (most notably E/R, QUINCY, M*A*S*H and a little CSI), and grafted to it a detective format, but here the culprit is not a murderer but the disease or medical syndrome that's killing this week's patient at busy (albeit fictional) Princeton-Plainsboro Teaching Hospital in New Jersey, and has eluded even the best medical attention at that elite institution. Until, that is, Dr. Gregory House (Hugh Laurie) and his team, who are all about diagnostics, get assigned the case. To reinforce the "whodunit" aspect of the show, House's name begins with the same letter as Holmes, Sherlock Holmes, his original address is 221B, and his dispassionate buddy and intellectual foil Wilson (Robert Sean Leonard) is gently reminiscent of Dr. Watson, one of the backgrounder goodies pointed out by this boxed set's many bells-and-whistles.
Medical mystery brings with it a stiff consortium of medical oddities. Often, issues that would take top ranking on other medical shows are just part of the passing scene: ectopic pregnancy, Cushing's Syndrome, hemispheric displacement (half of the brain shutting down, or threatening to) and Legionnaire's Disease are among the maladies that have to be dealt with en route to what's REALLY threatening the suffering patient. HOUSE, M.D.'s writers and producers confess that they and their advisors scour medical literature looking for that true one-in-a-million malady ("If it has happened once, that's validation enough," says one producer, "If it has happened three times in all the literature that may be too much.") At the center of this series is its offbeat title character, Dr. Gregory House, played to a T, American accent and all, by British actor Hugh Laurie (whom some may remember as upper-class-twit Bertie Wooster in the old "Jeeves and Wooster" segments of WOODHOUSE PLAYHOUSE that aired on PBS). In chronic pain from a thigh disorder, House is a Vicodin addict and a stern taskmaster who walks with a limp, brandishes a cane, and cracks wise so astringently that even Hawkeye Pierce would cringe at some of his insults. One day he calls a bisexual assistant "Thirty-One" instead of her usual nickname "Thirteen," "Because I thought you liked it both ways."
To be House's colleague or friend is to suffer a constant barrage of insult and other verbal provocation. Two standouts in the large ensemble cast are Lisa Edelstein, playing administrative head of the hospital Dr. Lisa Cuddy, who mixes erotic tension with perpetual exasperation as House's boss (and gives as good as she gets returning House's scorched-earth wit); and Robert Sean Leonard as Dr. James Wilson, a staff oncologist who plays House's only real friend, a thankless task for the character and a demanding one for the actor, who employs understatement and occasional righteous indignation as the moral center up against House's diagnostic eccentricities and occasional medical excesses (House's "Jiminy Cricket," a writer calls him). The ever-insecure House is not apt to share. When House and Wilson move into an apartment together, Wilson expresses a romantic interest in the woman down the hall, but House allows her to think that he and Wilson are a gay couple. Then, when House himself become attracted to her, he takes her to a posh restaurant to seduce her into seducing him at her home. Wilson, though, crashes the twosome. On bended knee, he takes out a ring and proposes to House, while an enchanted diner urges, "Say yes!" The rest of the ensemble cast is fine as well, though as the series advances and their interactions increase, the "soap opera" factor inevitably grows. Guest stars, who usually bear the brunt of the perplexing diseases at the heart of each plot, are well cast and include Elias Koteas, Howard Hesseman, Mos Def, Cynthia Nixon, Jeremy Renner, Joel Grey, Lin-Manuel Miranda, and Candice Bergen.
Happily, this show was so generously funded that it boasts production values equal to a feature-length movie, while the dialog and format is as cutting-edge as it gets on TV. (And the visuals -- expect to see blood and urine.) Following CSI's lead, the show employs video special-effects (VFX) to show what's happening inside the human body. Season Four, the only season not at full length because of a writer's strike, is nonetheless notable for a two-parter in which a bus crash plays a pivotal role. No expense was spared, even to the point of constructing an enormous armature to "roll" the bus during the accident. It is around this time that episodes shift from a four- to a six-act structure, allowing for a surprising amount of complexity and subplotting in episodes that run only about forty-five minutes without commercials. Bells-and-whistles in this boxed set are numerous, including Commentary for some episodes, witness from all major production staff and actors and -- a happy enhancement in a show that, despite the gore, is often as much comedy-drama as comedy -- the occasional scene re-played out in "Valley Girl" style complete with accent and slang dialog. My only complaint is that one of the DVD's had a little dried "goop" on it that thoroughly hindered the playing of one episode until it was located and eradicated. Universal should be more careful. Still, for 176 episodes the price of this boxed set is a good one, well under half of what downloading episodes piecemeal would cost, and you'll rarely find slack anywhere in the entire eight years. Highest recommendation.
on October 2, 2013
I've loved Laurie since the mid 80's comedy show, A Bit Of (Stephen)Fry And Laurie. After seeing that series, you can understand what gives him his range on the House shows. I generally don't watch TV, so i missed the first pass at House,MD; Even through i thought it would be a comedy, it took quite a while to check it out on Ntflx. Boy, was i glad i did. The whole cast play very deeply, but Laurie is an incredible showman: pianist, guitarist, juggler, sleight of hand details which make his performance deep not only verbally, but physically as well. Everybody on the show pulls their weight, too.
on June 1, 2014
I am a House fanatic, there's not a week that goes by that I don't pull out a DVD to look at. Certain shows you can't get enough of watching no matter how many times you've seen them, but for me, no matter how many times I watch them, I always seem to see something a little different that I somehow missed seeing before, which is strange, because it's the same DVD, really weird, huh. Anyway, I love watching his antics, but mostly how he go about finding solutions to his patients problems, hated he had the drug problem, but that only added to the real world situations that can even happen to so-called pillars of society. It also showed the different aspects of how coping mechanisms come into play from the character himself, his friends, co-workers, employer and even the patients. But most of all, he was passionate about medicine and he cared, even though he tried to make them think the opposite. Hey, don't take my word for it, get them and judge for yourself, I truly recommend you do, you might become a "House Fan" too. I wish someone will bring it back, I'm sure they can get enough material from real life situations, oh well, now you know one of my secret wishes. LOL