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Sam & Max Freelance Police - The Complete Series

4.7 out of 5 stars 36 customer reviews

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(Mar 11, 2008)
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Remember, kids, we're professional cartoon characters. Don t try this at home. Based on Sam Purcell s enormously popular underground comic, The adventures of Sam & Max: Freelance Police! is an edgy and often irreverent, impudent, insolent, impious and silly series about a pair of likeable law enforcement types who don t take guff, from anybody. It' s about the timeless struggle between good, evil and snacktime;the weekly mishaps of a sixfoot dog, Sam, and a threefoot rabbitything, though he prefers the term lagomorph, Max, who have a mirthful time trying to resolve only the weirdest criminal cases of the day. Really.
For your own good, and the good of mankind, enjoy Sam & Max: Freelance Police!

Bonus Feature:
A COMIC-CONversation With Steve Purcell!!!
3 Animated Shorts Originally Seen on FOX KidsTM
Sam & Max: Our Bewildering Universe An original animated short written and codirected by Steve Purcell
Telling The Tale Of Telltale Games A look at Telltale Games with cofounder Dan Connors, design director Dave Grossman and technical artist Daniel Herrera
Sam & Max Season 2 Playable Demo by Telltale Games
Original Series Bible by Steve Purcell

Sam & Max: Freelance Police was a cheeky, comically perverse Fox animated series with a brief run on television in 1997, based on a comic book by Steve Purcell. Sam and Max are lifelong friends, the former a six-foot dog in generic-looking detective clothes, while Max is a short, unclothed rabbit (or, as he is often called, "rabbity thing") with a maniacal grin. Together, they set about writing wrongs and generally getting into well-meaning mischief, often receiving cryptic instructions by a never-seen Commissioner and working closely if warily with a child inventor called the Geek. The Complete Series includes 12 half-hour episodes, most of those divided between two short but imaginative tales that unabashedly derive inspiration from pop culture touchstones. (The very relationship between Sam and Max is reminiscent of the friendship between Gilligan and the Skipper on Gilligan's Island). Opener "The Thing That Wouldn't Stop" is like a wacky Scooby Doo adventure, in which the unflappable Sam and unhinged Max enter an alternative universe through Geek's refrigerator, where a green monster is pulling fridge repairmen to the other side. "Dysfunction of the Gods" is a very funny episode in which our heroes try to stop an apocalypse by repairing the romance between Zeus and Hera on Mt. Olympus. (They turn to a very modern idea to get the job done: putting Zeus and Hera on a Jerry Springer-like talk show that they personally host.) "A Glitch In Time" is one of the best stories, in which Sam and Max fool around with history's timeline by making little tweaks in the past and checking out present-day consequences. Much of what they see is rewardingly funny, but things go too far when they're separated: Sam becoming a horse groomer and Max a lab animal undergoing experiments.

"The Trouble with Gary" is a variation on The Twilight Zone episode "It's a Good Life," in which Sam and Max try to help a boy with the power to alter anything (including people) in his environment. Two more Twilight Zone storylines are quoted in episodes "The Invaders" (which recalls a TZ program of the same title) and "Sam & Max Vs. the Uglions from Outer Spacer" (echoing TZ's famous "To Serve Man"). Special features include an interview with Purcell, in which he explains that Sam and Max were born in his parodies of his brother's comic drawings. There's also a trio of very funny Sam & Max shorts from Fox days, and another short that mocks the infamous "alien autopsy" film allegedly suppressed by the federal government. --Tom Keogh

Special Features

  • Comic conversation with Steve Purcell
  • Three animated shorts originally seen on Fox kids
  • Sam & Max: Our bewildering universe
  • Telling the Tale of Telltale Games
  • Sam & Max: Ice Station Santa
  • Original series bible by Steve Purcell

Product Details

  • Actors: Harvey Atkin and Robert Tinkler
  • Directors: Steve Whitehouse
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Animated, Box set, Color, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 3
  • Rated:
    General Audience
  • Studio: Shout Factory
  • DVD Release Date: March 11, 2008
  • Run Time: 300 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (36 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0012680AI
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #84,304 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Sam & Max Freelance Police - The Complete Series" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

With Sam & Max breaking out into the popular scene with the Telltale episodic game series and a reprint of the Surfin' the Highway TPB, it was only a matter of time before the Fox Saturday Morning cartoon made its appearance on DVD. Shout Factory! as stepped forward and done an excellent job bringing the short-lived cult series to a wider audience.

The packaging for this release is superb. It includes new art from Steve Purcell (creator of Sam & Max), a Freelance Police sticker, and three discs. The first two discs hold the show episodes while the third is a bonus disc including several animated shorts (three of which were pulled directly from the show), an interview with Steve Purcell, a brief look at Telltale games, character art, a playable demo, and many other features.

The video looks great for the age of the material. Sound is great as well, though I do miss subtitles. Shout! Factory also decided to use chapter stops within the episodes themselves as opposed to each episode being its own chapter as is more common with recent releases of other animated shows. This is a great feature as Sam & Max can be taken in either extended or short watching periods (many of the episodes are under 10 minutes long).

Those who enjoy the Sam & Max comic will find that much of the mirth and humor have made it in to the show. It has been cleaned up quite a bit but you'll find yourself asking "How did that make it in to a kids cartoon?" in many instances. It's an excellent translation, but some folks may be turned off by the randomness of it all.

The show itself will give more than its fair share of good laughs and quotable quotes. It's well worth the price of admission!
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This is the gripping, heart-felt telling of two freelance police officer's venture into the criminal underbelly. This set contains 24 horrifying cases that will push them to their boundaries and test the very essence of what makes them officers of the law.
Join them on this powerful journey that captures the gritty reality of detective work as never seen before and maybe even discover for yourself the answer to the age old question "Why?"

I've been waiting for this set to be released since DVD became the savior of TV. Being a fan of the original game (Hit The Road) when it was released, I was extremely excited to hear about a cartoon show being developed! In it's original airing I really didn't get to see that many episodes, but when they released a bunch of them on VHS I quickly bought them up.
After years of waiting for something to happen with a complete DVD release our prayers were finally answered by Shout Factory. Coming to the rescue with promise of an awesome set that would be worth waiting for and did they ever deliver!
Steve Purcell has done some custom art for this set that makes it stand out on the shelf. The packaging is a slipcover holding two thinpaks inside (each with their own artwork). It's a thing of beauty to behold. This set really shows that it was put together with a love and care of the series.

On to the actually content! The first thinpak holds two disc's which contain all 24 10 minute episodes (including the 3 shorts). The menu on Disc One is pretty much done in the style of the opener of the show which is a nice touch. The menu buttons are the bumper stickers on the front of the Desoto (The car Sam & Max drive) which take you to the episode selection which is done in a comic book style menu.
Read more ›
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When a show is said to be ahead of its time, it often still ends up being dated once that time has caught up. Not the case for Sam & Max. While still very ahead of its time for a late 1990s Saturday Morning Cartoon, the humor and wit can still be appreciated even now.

Even though most of the episodes are available on YouTube and all but a handful can be watched on Gamptap, having the episodes on DVD means you don't have to fight bandwidth traffic or compressed video and audio quality to enjoy the wacky cases of the Freelance Police. There are little details that you probably missed because of the low quality as well as jokes you probably want to revisit to find out what they said now that you can understand them clearly.

If you are already a fan, you probably already have this set of DVDs. If you like cartoons that skirt the lines of what can and cannot be said on TV, you'll enjoy what Sam & Max can get away with.

Either way, get this DVD set. "I have one, as does everyone I respect and admire!"
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I'm a relatively new fan of the Sam & Max franchise. The games from TellTale Games were fantastic and I craved more! Which lead me to this, the short lived TV show.

Now the content is fantastic. The voice acting is a from the video game and the action is a little too quickly paced for the TV medium, but it's a must see for any S&M fan out in the wild blue yonder. The bonus DVD with the sketch book is also very nice as it goes on to show a few frames of how the characters are drawn as well as the original "Show Bible", which is an in-depth character study.

However, buyer beware. The DVD format is some sort of strange formatting. There's something about the formatting on the disk that makes it incredibly hard for DVD players to read. On my PC, it takes a few tries of inserting it over and over again before it'll pick up that there's video/data upon the disk.
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