Murphy Brown: Season 1
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Murphy Brown: The Complete First Season (DVD)
Candice Bergen stars as Murphy Brown, an outspoken TV journalist, who along with her hilariously quirky cohorts of the top-rated newsmagazine show, FYI, struggles to handle personal and professional problems with humor and insight.]]>
The DVD release of Murphy Brown is particularly newsworthy. There had never been anyone on primetime quite like Murphy, the star investigative reporter for the Washington, D.C.-based television news magazine F.Y.I. As created by Diane English and embodied by Candice Bergen, Murphy was, in English's words, "Mike Wallace in a dress." On camera, she was tough, smart, and relentless. Off camera she was intriguingly flawed. In the pilot episode, her character returns to work following a stay at the Betty Ford Clinic. Over the course of the season, her sobriety is supremely tested by the chaotic goings-on inside the funniest newsroom since WJM on The Mary Tyler Moore Show. Murphy must contend with an unending parade of ill-suited, stressed-out secretaries (a running joke throughout the series' 10 years), new 25-year-old producer Miles Silverberg (Grant Shaud) whom she rudely dismisses ("While I was being maced at the Democratic Convention in '68, you were wondering if you'd ever meet Adam West"), and new co-anchor Corky Sherwood (Faith Ford), a former Miss America ("by default") with no journalistic background. Murphy is over 40 and prickly, with a penchant for vindictive practical jokes against her colleagues. In short, in the words of a lampooning cartoonist in the episode "Funnies Girl," dynamic, "pain-in-the-butt," Motown-loving Murphy is "a veritable fountain of material."
With its smart and sophisticated writing and seamless ensemble, Murphy Brown instantly established itself as one of television's gold standard series, earning four Emmy Awards for this inaugural season, including Outstanding Lead Actress for Bergen and Outstanding Writing for English. Colleen Dewhurst was also honored for her guest appearance as Murphy's equally intimidating mother in the episode, "Mama Said." A cast and crew retrospective and commentaries by Bergen and English for, respectively, the pilot and classic flashback episode "The Summer of '77" earn this set R*E*S*P*E*C*T. --Donald Liebenson
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Now, listen, I was, and AM, a political conservative, and if I, OF ALL PEOPLE, want Murphy back, think of all those to the left that would love it!!
My only problem with this purchase is that unlike most good TV shows, only one DVD is offered for sale. No clue as to why this limitation exists. Anyway, this is the reason for the four star rating, as opposed to a five star rating.
If the powers-that-be were smart, they would offer many more DVD's of this TV show. I am quite certain that they could easily sell a great many of them.
How many TV characters are lambasted by the Vice President of the United States (as if it is a real person)?
This show is worth watching if only for the "secretary" of the week gag. Really funny.