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Still The Munsters after all these years...
on November 26, 2005
As a child growing up in the 70's and 80's, I used to come home from school and watch The Munsters. I was absolutely fascinated with this series. The characters were hilarious, and the scripts were excellent! Now, the complete second season, comes to DVD in a 3 disc set. It features all 32 episodes from The Munsters second and final season. Don't forget about the 4 A&E Bios as bonus features! The 4 A&E Bios will be about, The Munsters, "America's First Family of Fright", Fred Gwynne, "More Than a Munster", Yvonne DeCarlo, "Gilded Lily", and Al Lewis, "Forever Grandpa". All packaged, in a Herman Munster head.
Take a good close look at Fred Gwynne's portrayal of Herman Munster. You will see that Herman get's more and more child-like, especially in "Prehistoric Munster", and "The Musician". Herman has now developed a very large booming laugh, the occasional temper-tantrums, and his always popular catchphrases, "Darn, Darn, Darn!!!" and "I'll kill 'em, I'll kill 'em, I'll kill 'em!!!"
Also, take a careful look at Al Lewis' sideburns. In the early episodes of Season 2, ("Herman's Child Psychology," "Herman the Master Spy," & "Bronco-Bustin' Munster") His sideburns were small, but take a look at the episodes called "Cyrano de Munster," "A Visit from Johann", and "Eddie's Brother", you will see that Al shaved much lower, and almost had some sort of a beard going on. A very neat trait for Grandpa to have!
Now, if you've only seen Season 2 episodes from TVLand, then you don't know what the original Season 2 theme is supposed to sound like. The original Season 2 theme of The Munsters is supposed to stop after Butch Patrick's name is shown. More theme music starts again when you see "Joe Connelly and Bob Mosher". That's the way it's supposed to be because when The Munsters originally aired on CBS, commercials used to be in that break between themes. TVLand edited the theme into one long version. The TVLand version, is incorrect. The DVD version, is correct.
Also, don't be shocked if some episodes do not feature the crashing door sound. That's the way it was originally supposed to be, because the producers (Joe Connelly and Bob Mosher) never intended for their to be a crash sound, but later added it to have more of an effect when you would see Herman come through the doors.
The box itself can also be a challenge to handle. What I have found to be handy, is just leave the inner "head" out of the original box.
The last three issues I would like to address, is space of episodes on the discs, B&W film turning sepia, and the audio quality of "Cyrano de Munster."
There are 32 half-hour episodes on this set, and four 40 minute biographies. If you have 3 double-sided discs, why not use the space appropriately? The episodes should have been spaced in this manner, seven episodes on Disc 1 A, and Disc 1 B, then 6 episodes on Disc 2 A, Disc 2 B, and Disc 3 A. Then place the four 40 minute biographies on Disc 3 B.
There is also a visible problem with some episodes turning sepia. Not all the episodes have their original rich B&W format. Some episodes have a yellow-brown tint that is visible by turning up the color on your television set. The only episode with real B&W, is "The Musician."
"Cyrano de Munster," probably has the worst audio quality of any "Munsters" episode. There is a light crackle sound that is continuous from about half-way through the episode, all the way to the start of the closing theme. It's annoying to hear "snap, crackle, and pop" for 10 minutes.
DVD info for The Munsters The Complete Second Season
Spoken language: English
Captioning: English, Spanish (On discs 1 & 2 only)
DISC 1; SIDE A
Herman's Child Psychology
Herman, the Master Spy
Herman Munster, ShutterBug
Herman, Coach of the Year
Happy 100th Anniversary
Lily's Star Boarder
DISC 1; SIDE B
John Doe Munster
A Man For Marilyn
Herman's Driving Test
Will Success Spoil Herman Munster?
The Treasure of Mockingbird Heights
Herman's Peace Offensive
Herman Picks a Winner
DISC 2; SIDE A
Just Another Pretty Face
Big Heap Herman
The Most Beautiful Ghoul in the World
Grandpa's Lost Wife
The Fregosi Emerald
Cyrano de Munster
DISC 2; SIDE B
A Visit From Johann
Herman, the Tire-Kicker
A House Divided
Herman's Sorority Caper
A Visit From the Teacher
America's First Family of Fright (A&E TV-ography)
Fred Gwynne: More Than a Munster (A&E TV-ography)
Yvonne De Carlo: Gilded Lily (A&E TV-ography)
Al Lewis: Forever Grandpa (A&E TV-ography)
(There is just one side to Disc 3)
Don't forget to check out:
The Munsters The Complete First Season
Munster, Go Home!
The Munsters' Revenge
... which are all on DVD!