Pee-Wee's Playhouse: The Complete Series
DVD | Box Set
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TV Guide named Pee-wee's Playhouse #10 of the Top 25 Cult Television Shows Ever!
All 45 wacky episodes, plus Pee-wee's Playhouse Christmas Special, have been METICULOUSLY RE-MASTERED from the original film elements and now YOU can see this ground-breaking series for the very first time in beautiful HIGH-DEFINITION!
Winner of an amazing 22 Emmy® Awards!
Scream along to the SECRET WORD with Pee-wee Herman and his pals Jambi the Genie, Miss Yvonne, Cowboy Curtis, Reba the mail lady, Captain Carl, Magic Screen, Conky, Globey, Chairry, Pterri, Randy and many more! Aaaaarrrrrrrrr!!! I know you are, but what am I!?! Mecka-lecka hi... Mecka-hiney ho!
OVER 4 HOURS of brand-new interviews with the cast and crew, plus never-seen, behind-the-scenes footage all part of TEN FEATURETTES, including:
Building the Playhouse
Opening the Playhouse
Writing for the Playhouse
The Look of the Playhouse
Music of the Playhouse
The Cast of the Playhouse
Puppets of the Playhouse
Animating the Playhouse
A Very Merry Christmas Special
Fans and Memorabilia of the Playhouse
These featurettes include interviews with actors Laurence Fishburne (Cowboy Curtis), S. Epatha Merkerson (Reba the mail lady), Lynne Marie Stewart (Miss Yvonne) and John Paragon (Jambi the genie). Mark Mothersbaugh and Danny Elfman explain the music of the show and the Emmy award-winning production design team of Gary Panter, Wayne White and Ric Heitzman explain how the sets and puppets were imagined and produced. Animation Supervisor of all 5 seasons of Pee-wee's Playhouse, Prudence Fenton (Liquid Television) talks about all the types of animation used in the program and animators Peter Lord and David Sproxton (Wallace & Gromit) discuss their contributions. Ve Neill, the multi-Oscar winning make-up artist talks about designing the make-up 'looks'. Two of the shows writers talk about how the scripts were created. Other cast and crew explain, in fascinating detail, stories from the production of Pee-wee's Playhouse. If that weren't enough, many of the shows puppeteers and voice artists are interviewed about how the puppet characters were brought to life.
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Shout Factory, the company releasing this product, has had some problems over the years with their releases - even some of their bigger titles haven't had the greatest video presentation. For them to release a full 5 seasons of a show from the 80's, I was expecting it to be a release to get the content out and not much else.
Fortunately, I was wrong -- they did a great job on this release!
The set comes in a very sturdy matte-box package (much sturdier than other releases I own which use a flimsy box). This is both nice (sturdy!) but also a bit of an issue as the cases are very hard to remove since it's such a tight-fit. Inside the box are 2 large blu-ray cases (each holding 4 discs -- seasons 1 & 2 on the first case, seasons 3, 4, 5 on the second case, a total of 8 discs)
The discs are listed as Region A only
You can get a full listing of whats on each disc by looking behind the discs inside the case (the case is a transparent blue, so you can view the disc listing). I would have liked a paper insert with this content, but this still works fine!
Content: The content holds up surprisingly well. I know a lot of kids' shows don't hold up over the years, but this one is still entertaining today. It definitely requires you to be able to stand the randomness, but if you do you'll love it. Included are 45 episodes, including the Christmas Special
Video: This is where my big concern was going to be. This show started in 1986 and was a TV show. Fortunately, it was shot on film and was kept safe over the years..Shout Factory did a complete restoration, scanning and cleaning up the original film content. I believe it was mentioned that while the show was shot on film, it was finalized in Standard Definition with the completed effects. Shout Factory went in and re-created some of these (such as the word of the day) to present the entire show in High Definition. They did a very faithful job on this, and I don't think anyone will be upset. It's presented in 1080i (despite what the box says, its not 1080p), 4:3 ratio (meaning black bars on the left/right)
The detail is incredible -- you can see strings on the puppets and the detail on pee-wee's jacket (it's actual a striped black/white very close together, not a solid grey). There is a noticeable grain, and it appears to be sharpened, but the detail seen is well worth it (especially when you compare it to the way it originally looked). Colors are bright and vibrant.
Audio: I'm listening on a soundbar and didn't notice any issues. Box stated it's in Stereo/Mono english. English subtitles are included.
Extras: The set has a nice set of extras! The Christmas Special includes an audio commentary. There are a number of (newly produced) extras, including interviews and featurettes. Very interesting to watch now, 30 years later!
Overall, highly recommended. The price is a bit high, but considering the content I'm completely satisfied with it. Great job on this release!
Whether it's nostalgia (as it is for me) or loving creative television/movies (as it is for me), this won't let you down. Pee-wee Herman is quite an ingenious character. I recommend this and Pee-wee's Big Adventure only.
I didn't really care for his new movie on Netflix, to me, wouldn't he be upset his beloved car went missing? It wasn't as innocent and creative as his first movie and this television series.
Most recent customer reviews
I'm an early childhood educator..
I forgot how great the show was for preschoolers.Read more