'Alice (Television Favorites Compilation)'
(Linda Lavin, Philip McKeon, et al / DVD / NR / (1976) 2006 / Warner Bros.)
Overview: After the death or her husband Don, Alice Hyatt (Linda Lavin) is on her way to hollywood to become a singer, but her car breaks down in Phoenix with her son Tommy (Phillip McKeon). She has no money so she takes a job at Mel's Diner. Mel (Vic Tayback) is a loud, cheap man who pays very little. Alice's co-workers are the man hungry Florence Jean Castlebury nicknamed Flo (Polly Holliday), and the ditzy but lovable Vera Gorman (Beth Howland).
DVD Verdict: Firstly, I have to say that 'Alice' really needs to be released with each full season on DVDs, not just what the show's distributor thinks are the best episodes. I started watching reruns of "Alice" in the 1990s when I was in my 20s, and once I started I couldn't stop watching it, I was totally hooked! It was so funny and fun to watch all the crazy characters that I looked forward to seeing every day. It may be just a compilation, but it's a start. Now we just need ALL the other shows from all 9 seasons! Sometimes I can't believe what shows are being released on DVD while "Alice" is being ignored. I would buy every season of "Alice", and I'd never get tired of it. I really think it's one of the best sitcoms ever, and totally classic TV that would very easily find an enthusiastic audience in the new generation. Secondly, and with regard the plot, 'Alice' was first seen in August of 1976 but was based on the 1975 film, "Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore" starring Ellen Burstyn and centering around Alice Hyatt. The television series had Linda Lavin starring as Alice. After her husband, Donald, was killed in a truck accident, Alice Hyatt and her 12-year-old son, Tommy, moved out of their home in New Jersey and headed for Hollywood. Alice's dream was to become a singer but for the time being she got work as a waitress in a greasy spoon, Mel's Diner after her car breaks down in Phoenix. Mel was gruff and demanding and constantly bossing his three waitresses around. The other two waitresses, in the beginning were Flo and Vera. Flo was the man-hungry southern belle, who's favorite saying was "Kiss My Grits." The other waitress, Vera, was shy and quiet and somewhat, as Mel put it, "dingy." Flo left in 1980 for her own series and was replaced by Belle who was later replaced by Jolene. In 1985, the series came to an end with Mel selling the diner, a married Vera, was now pregnant, Jolene was planning to open a beauty shop and Alice's dream was finally coming true, she became a lead singer with a band in Nashville. The spin-off was called ... 'Flo'!! This is a Full Screen Presentation (1.33:1) and comes with the specially chosen episodes: Alice Gets A Pass, The Odd Couple, Close Encounters of the Worst Kind, Block Those Kicks, Cabin Fever and Flo's Farewell.