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The Hitchhiker, Volume 1 (HBO TV Series) (2004)

Willem Dafoe , Joe Pantoliano  |  Unrated |  DVD
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (26 customer reviews)

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The Hitchhiker, Volume 1 (HBO TV Series) + The Hitchhiker, Vol. 3 + The Hitchhiker, Vol. 2
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Product Details

  • Actors: Willem Dafoe, Joe Pantoliano, Elliott Gould, Helen Hunt, James Remar
  • Format: Multiple Formats, AC-3, Closed-captioned, Color, Dolby, NTSC, Subtitled
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono), English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround)
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish, French
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 2
  • Rated: Unrated
  • Studio: HBO Studios
  • DVD Release Date: March 16, 2004
  • Run Time: 300 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (26 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00013D54Y
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #108,095 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "The Hitchhiker, Volume 1 (HBO TV Series)" on IMDb

Special Features

  • Contains 10 episodes: Last Scene, Nightshift, The Miracle of Alice Ames, Ghostwriter, Man's Best Friend, W.G.O.D., Billy Baltimore, Homebodies, Why Are You Here?, In the Name of Love
  • 5 director commentaries including Paul Veroeven, Phillip Noyce & Carl Schenkel

Editorial Reviews

Page Fletcher is "The Hitchhiker," walking a lonely road where terror awaits around every curve. Walk with him, and you'll find yourself in some very dark places...places you wouldn't want to visit alone. That's why he's there. That's why he's always there. He won't hold your hand - but he'll make sure the only ones who get hurt are those who deserve to.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
33 of 34 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars volume one 10 tales 2 disks June 5, 2008
Verified Purchase
The Hitchhiker (30 min.) HBO
Season 1 episodes 1-26 Nov 1983 to Apr 1986
Season 2 episodes 27-39 Feb - May 1987
Season 3 episodes 40-65 Apr-Dec 1989
Season 4 episodes 66-85 Sept 1990 - Feb 1991

This set, (Volume One) has 10 episodes:
24 Last Scene
14 Nightshift
46 The Miracle of Alice Ames
19 Ghostwriter
18 Man's Best Friend
17 W.G.O.D.
33 The Legendary Billy B.
31 Homebodies
30 Why Are You Here?
34 In the Name of Love

This series continued the 'wandering adventurer' style of storytelling wherein the main character is only a witness sharing his experiences. Like Route 66, The Fugitive, or The Incredible Hulk, to name a few, each story is unrelated to any other except by the conceptual vehicle of the perpetual wanderer. Like One Step Beyond or The Twilight Zone, The Hitchhiker himself is not a player in the tales. Occasionally stories involved supernatural forces, but most plot twists stemmed from the dark side of the human spirit.
In 1996, The Hitchhiker entered into syndication on the USA Channel and so was re-edited to remove the violence and/or nudity and sexuality that were featured on the HBO runs (and to make room for commercials). Originally the Hitchhiker was cast with Nicholas Campbell as the host, but Campbell was quickly replaced with Page Fletcher. In order to preserve continuity during the syndication runs, Campbell's scenes in the first three episodes were later re-shot with Fletcher. But because the character of the Hitchhiker initially had more interaction with the people in the stories, this caused certain scenes to appear very choppy.
There is a little confusion as to how many seasons the show actually ran since season one ran for two and a half years!
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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars HBO in the 80's!!!! March 9, 2004
By SAR
This was a spooky, gory and weird series that truly pushed the limits of HBO at the time. Kind of like The Outer Limits mixed with Tales From The Crypt, it features a hitchiker that kind of "introduces" a new story every episode. Many famous faces and directors got a start on this series. HBO used to run this show at about 11:00 at night to make sure all the kids were asleep!
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15 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Welcome back Hitchhiker April 1, 2004
By Nycboy1
Wow, there's a great collection of talent there! With episodes featuring award-winning actors such as Helen Hunt and Joe Pantoliano, and participation from fan-favorite director Paul Verhoeven, this surely is a must-have for any DVD collector
Koch Canada will release The Complete First Season on DVD April 20th. This 3 disc set will contain 26 episodes The show must have aired differently in Canada because what Koch considers the first season is actually the first 3 seasons according to the episode guide at EPGuides.com. It's not all good news though; the people at Koch Canada said that they don't own the Canadian rights to the second Canadian season so they're unable to release those episodes.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Creepy and weird. February 25, 2011
I remember seeing this late at night on HBO, and not really liking or understanding any of the stories. I just tuned in to see some naked women. The stories? It was stuff that was over my head. I just didn't get how anybody could shoot this stuff, and why on earth anyone would make up these awful stories.

In retrospect it's a kind of criminal-drama meets the Twilight Zone. It shows people acting just plain wacky and insane. Driven way beyond sanity by something I don't think the lay audience member, me included, understand.

At least with Rod Serling you understood that normal people were in over their heads in extraordinary circumstances. In The Hitchhiker, it's like these people make these really psychotic circumstances for the sake of it.

Fond memories of naked women from my youth, but beyond that I think the drama is just out there. I bought the DVD set some years back thinking to relive some memories, and watching it with a more intelligent and critical eye I'm a little baffled as to who the target audience is. But, whatever. I tuned in for the naked babes, not the wackos which creep me out even more now than then.

In retrospect some of it is kind of hammy as well. An erotic thriller series, to me, wouldn't involve nut-cases and psychos. But I guess someone had to do it.
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4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great deal for the money November 11, 2008
What a great volume and for the price it's available it's a steal!!!!
Well of course had to wait a year or two for it but I am a very patient person.

I remember this show briefly way before HBO was known as it today for their cable programs. This DVD set looks great the episode looks crisp and clear. The special features could have been better but we do get director's commentary on several episodes.

All the episodes were memorable. I liked the Paul Verhoeven episode, the Kirstie Alley episode "Legend of Billy B" I think it was called was a laugh a minute. I also loved the episode with Helen Hunt a pretty clever use of moving the camera on and off. What else the episodes with James Remar "Home Bodies" was also memorable. The episode with Joe Pantoliano "Miracle of Alice Ames" about the phony preacher was great. Margot Kidder as the diabolic nurse in "Nightshift" was also funny, realistic and entertaining. All the episode feature first rate actors who went on to do bigger things. I really do hope they continue to release more volumes.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
good series
Published 22 days ago by susan long
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Series From HBO, reasonably priced
Another golden oldie. Was one of the best series HBO has done. Page Fletcher reminds me of the actor from "Hitcher", not Rutger Hauer, but in the remake.
Published 2 months ago by EC320
3.0 out of 5 stars Edited DVDs. Why!?
I vaguely remember this show from when I was young. I found an episode on YouTube awhile back called "Nightshift," and decided to purchase the DVD set (since it was cheap). Read more
Published 5 months ago by twcfan
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent writing
Excellent HBO series!a must have for any TV show collector. Very suspenseful and well written show. Multi award winning show.
Published 5 months ago by Joshua Kinnison
5.0 out of 5 stars perfect nostalgia
Bought this season for my mom, and she literally squealed, lol. When I was young, we could not WAIT for this show to come on every week...creepy and suspenseful... Read more
Published 6 months ago by vanessa bell
4.0 out of 5 stars Have not seen
Got for a friend in Texas who does not wish to purchase online. I will not be watching it at all.
Published 7 months ago by Karen Rogers
5.0 out of 5 stars ENTERTAINING
It goes back to the 1980's when just a simple half hour program w/different plots every week.Reminds me a little of the classic TWILIGHT ZONE.
Published 8 months ago by Jack F. Renkert
5.0 out of 5 stars great series
I remember watching this back when it was on HBO. This set is a mixed bag. Some episodes are terrific and others not so great. But, for the price $4.99 you could do worse.
Published 16 months ago by Daniel J. D'agostino
1.0 out of 5 stars Tegan and Sara? What on Earth?
I have searched the Web for a similar incident, but I am probably alone in my misfortune here. I had purchased this set some time ago, and the first disc (labeled episodes 1-5)... Read more
Published 20 months ago by B. Altug
2.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing!
I like offbeat as long as it's understandable...I did not find these episodes to be so. Not up to usual HBO standards.
Published 20 months ago by bobm
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