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Fridays: The Best Of

4.6 out of 5 stars 229 ratings

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August 6, 2013
4
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Genre Comedy/Television, Television
Format Multiple Formats, Box set, Color, Full Screen, NTSC
Contributor Michael Richards, Larry David, Andy Kaufman, John Moffitt
Language English
Number Of Discs 4
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Product Description

Product Description

For the first time ever on DVD, ABC’s cult hit Fridays is here! Originally airing from 1980 to 1982, these sixteen episodes showcase the edgy and subversive sketch comedy that helped launch the careers of Larry David (Curb Your Enthusiasm), Michael Richards (Seinfeld), Melanie Chartoff (Parker Lewis Can’t Lose) and more.


Also featuring Mark Blankfield, Maryedith Burrell, Darrow Igus, Brandis Kemp, Bruce Mahler, and John Roarke, Fridays presented a hilariously twisted view of the early 80s to adventurous viewers on a weekly basis. Their outrageous characters (from the paranoid Drugs R Us Pharmacist to the rabbinical action heroes of Matzoi! to the laid-back Nat E. Dred, The Rasta Gourmet) left audiences laughing long into the wee hours of the night.


With vintage musical performances (including Devo, Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers, The Cars, The Clash, KISS and more) as well as the show’s infamous guest appearances by the legendary Andy Kaufman, Fridays proved that late-night live comedy wasn’t just for Saturday night.

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The Best of Fridays presents a cross-section of famous (and infamous) material from ABC's early-1980s attempt to unseat Saturday Night Live as the reigning sketch/variety series on television. The series, which aired from 1980 to 1982, earned initial critical response for its broadside assault on the then-moribund SNL via cutting-edge sketches and musical guests, though its ultimate legacy is as an early showcase for cast members Larry David and Michael Richards and writer Larry Charles, all of whom later collaborated to greater success on Seinfeld. Some of the show's best sketches are featured on this five-disc set, including "Altered Statesman" and the jaw-dropping "Ronny Horror Picture Show," which filter then-president Ronald Reagan's administration through the prism of Ken Russell's Altered States and The Rocky Horror Picture Show. Its most newsworthy moment--guest host Andy Kaufman brawling with cast and crew, who were not in on the gag--is also included in the set, and is also the focus of a nine-minute extra featuring recollections and explanation by co-creator John Moffitt and members of the cast. But for every great sketch--and these include a clever mix of The Empire Strikes Back and Woody Allen's Stardust Memories and "A Night in Tehran," which imagines the Marx Brothers in the midst of the Iranian revolution--there are countless others that die on the vine, like the infamous "Diner of the Dead" and "Women Who Spit" sketches from episode three.

Like SNL, Fridays also relied too heavily on recurring characters whose efficacy expired after their first or second appearance, like Richards's manic Battle Boy or Darrow Igus's Rastafarian chef Nat E. Dred. These and other bits, including several featuring the show's intended breakout star, the gifted physical comedian Mark Blankfield, ultimately watered down the best sketches, leaving most, if not all episodes very uneven. Thankfully, Fridays had a wealth of terrific musical guests to help bolster its weaker shows, including the Clash (in their first stateside TV appearance), DEVO, the Cars, Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, Graham Parker and the Rumor, and KISS, each of whom are featured on the Best of set (though viewers should note that not every song performed by musical guests on their respective episodes is included on the set, and in the case of the Sir Douglas Quintet and Steve Forbert, the performances are removed entirely). The result is an energetic if not entirely successful experiment that's probably best appreciated by fans of the series, which has never been available in a legal DVD format, or David/Richards/Charles completists. The five-disc Best of Fridays set is rounded out by near-hour-long conversations with Richards and most of his cast mates (sans David, while Maryedith Burrell is featured in a separate, 13-minute segment) and Charles and the show's writers, as well as the aforementioned interview about Kaufman, a gallery of promotional and behind-the-scenes photos, and a brief, frothy segment about the series from a Los Angeles news broadcast. --Paul Gaita

Product details

  • MPAA rating ‏ : ‎ NR (Not Rated)
  • Product Dimensions ‏ : ‎ 0.7 x 7.5 x 5.4 inches; 6.4 Ounces
  • Item model number ‏ : ‎ 26923755
  • Director ‏ : ‎ John Moffitt
  • Media Format ‏ : ‎ Multiple Formats, Box set, Color, Full Screen, NTSC
  • Run time ‏ : ‎ 17 hours and 30 minutes
  • Release date ‏ : ‎ August 6, 2013
  • Actors ‏ : ‎ Michael Richards, Larry David, Andy Kaufman
  • Studio ‏ : ‎ Shout Factory
  • ASIN ‏ : ‎ B00CPTUNY2
  • Country of Origin ‏ : ‎ USA
  • Number of discs ‏ : ‎ 4
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.6 out of 5 stars 229 ratings

Customer reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
4.6 out of 5
229 global ratings

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Top reviews from other countries

Jesterger
5.0 out of 5 stars Also great to see some of the music acts of the ...
Reviewed in Canada on August 10, 2014
Douglas D Boyd
4.0 out of 5 stars Good Funny Series
Reviewed in Canada on September 26, 2020