Magnum P.I.: The Complete Series
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Buckle up and take a ride with Magnum, P.I. (Primetime Emmy Award winner Tom Selleck) as all eight seasons of the iconic series are collected together in this incredible 162-episode, 42-disc collection. Explore beautiful and exotic Hawaii with television's most beloved and charismatic private investigator as he tackles baffling mysteries and tracks down the bad guys with the help of T.C. (Roger E. Mosley), Rick (Larry Manetti) and Higgins (John Hillerman) and his four-legged pals, Apollo and Zeus. Packed with non-stop adventure and featuring iconic guest stars, Magnum P.I. is the unforgettable thrill-ride that was nominated for an impressive 30 awards during its run. Own the legacy today!
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The DVDs are single sided (some original releases were double sided, but in 2012, the series was re-released with single-sided disks). The picture and audio are just fine and the shows are fun to watch again. However, if you are someone like me who likes to watch the ending credits, you'll notice something very strange about them. The music does not come to an end. It plays on and on. The credits cut off at various points. At least one show did not even get through the first third of the credits. Others stopped halfway and some do get to the end, but it's not a definitive end like you see when watching Magnum on the Encore Channel or when it aired originally on TV. Oftentimes, there is a strange blackness of a few seconds between the last picture to appear and the Universal logo. Universal has actually acknowledged that a mistake was made, but noted that it is unlikely to be corrected. This situation occurs on the majority of seasons, but not all as the last couple of seasons appear to be mostly fine.Thus, enjoy the show, but if you like watching the end credits, be prepared for this unusual situation.
Also, Season 3, Disk 2, "Foiled Again" episode has a defect in the beginning voice over for chapter 4. Magnum begins to speak and then it skips forward. I'll have to watch the episode on Encore to remind myself what all Magnum said during this intro to the next scene. This was the only skip on my disks, though there were two very brief disk pauses on two other DVDs in the set. These do not affect the enjoyment of the shows in my opinion. They are very quick, short delays of an extra second or two.
There are some extras, but overall, I found them to be limited and disappointing. There were three bonused episodes from other series. One was for an episode of The A-Team and I actually loved the one they chose because it featured Kristen Meadows, a favorite actress of mine. Another was an episode of The Knight Rider. Neither has a tie-in to the Magnum series. Finally, there was an episode of The Rockford Files on which Tom Selleck appeared in a couple of shows. The episode on the DVD is one of Selleck's shows, White on White and Nearly Perfect. Earlier season sets have a bonus of a Magnum episode from the next season. I suppose that was exciting when the sets were first released, but for a complete series set, these bonus episodes are unnecessary and not worth much.
The best extra was probably a six-minute featurette on the crossover that was done between Magnum, PI and Murder She Wrote. There are three commentaries on episodes from season 8, but none include any of the actors. Two are with a writer and the other is with a co-producer. They had some interesting tidbits, but tended to veer to talk about the show as a whole instead of including some of the specific tidbits that I like to hear in commentaries. There's also a promotional show done on the Sleuth Channel when it began. It focused on the top ten detective shows as voted on by fans. The other extra is a featurette on 80's TV shows.
The 8 season sets come in a nice cardboard box for keeping. Each set is a digipak, book-like plastic case. Each DVD has its own 'book leaf' to rest securely in the plastic case. The DVDs are all basic with the name of the series and the disk number of the season imprinted on it. There is no artwork on the DVDs, even though I read on the Magnum Mania site that Season 5 when first released did have individual artwork of the stars on each DVD.
Originally, my 3-star rating is based on the issue with the ending credits and the defect. I had thought I would up it after seeing the extras in the set, but I'm leaving it. The extras just were not that exciting, but what bothers me most relates back to the problem with the ending credits. Universal pulled mostly syndicated copies of these shows and not the original masters that were first broadcast on TV. There are actually bits of show not included in some episodes on the DVD. These shows are not cut to bits, as in edited for more commercials, but there are a few moments that do not appear for one reason or another. You can read more of the details on the Magnum Mania website. More differences from original broadcast and the DVD versions: 1) The syndicated wrap up version of the Simon and Simon cross over episode (Ki'i's Don't Lie) is used so that they did not need to include the Simon and Simon episode (Emeralds Are Not a Girl's Best Friend). Interestingly, the Simon and Simon complete set does include the broadcast version, including the Magnum episode as a bonus in its set. 2) The Murder By Night episode that was originally broadcast in mostly black and white is a syndicated version with most of the episode in color.
Even with all I've written that are cons about the set, I don't think it should stop fans from buying the set when the set is priced appropriately. The show was a good one and a better set is unlikely to come along at this stage of the game. The few omissions are not that crucial to the overall enjoyment. Though the cons bug me, I am still glad I now own the set.
* Every disc is single-sided, as opposed to so many series that opt for double-sided.
* Every season is housed in a secure plastic clamshell package holding either six discs (Seasons 1-4), five discs (seasons 5-7), or three discs (season 8).
* Every disc was 100% free of any scuffs or scratches.
* The box that holds the eight seasons is sturdy and features great graphics of Tom Selleck and the rest of the cast
I am pretty strict when it comes to these reviews. If something isn't good, I'm not shy about saying so, but this Magnum PI box set is just perfect. Given how low the price tends to get on this from time to time (I got mine from Amazon for just $60), this one's a no-brainer. Grab it, and settle in for some wonderful 80s goodness, Magnum style!
Tom Selleck has an iconic acting career, but he'll forever be remembered as Thomas Magnum, along with his fellow cohorts on the Hawaiian islands as they fought crime in the '80s.
That said, the DVDs came in a box containing 8 cases, each with a season. Thankfully the DVDs are now one sided, unlike the ones you might've previously gotten or seen. When opening up the cases for the first time, be careful that none of the discs are loose or scratched after shipping.
This is an excellent set which improves some of the seasons where the notorious "flipper" discs were originally pressed by Universal. These seasons all feature single sided Dual Layer discs for better operating without the "freezing" associated with double sided flippers. The entire set (all seasons and bonus features/episodes) takes up far less space than the original sets. NO updating on the image has taken place ,we get the same quality of image which is pretty good at best, but it was a terrific series and Magnum PI remains the most popular Private Eye/Detective in TV history.
I found this at Costco for 99.99 so that is where I purchased and would recommend looking for that as the standard of good pricing as of this writing (November 1st)