'3rd Rock From the Sun: Season 5'
(John Lithgow, Kristen Johnston, et al / 4-Disc DVD / NR / (1996) 2006 / Anchor Bay Ent.)
Overview: A group of aliens have come to Earth to learn about its population, customs, etc. To avoid detection, they have taken on human form which gives them human emotions, physical needs etc. WITHOUT the understanding of what they mean or the inhibitions normally present in humans. Their leader takes the position of a college professor, their military expert as his sister, their intelligence expert, supposedly oldest of group takes form of his teenage son. The uninhibited reactions turn everyday events into unusual situations.
DVD Verdict: '3rd Rock from the Sun,' which has earned 31 Emmy nominations, is an inspired half-hour comedy series farcically dealing with the human condition. It was created by Bonnie Turner and Terry Turner in association with Carsey-Werner Productions, LLC for NBC-TV. Set in the fictional city of Rutherford, Ohio, this gentle-hearted series stars John Lithgow as the High Commander of an investigative team sent to Earth on a mission to learn everything about humans and their so-called advanced cilvilization. Back in the pilot ("Brains and Eggs," 1996), four extra-terrestrials suddenly materialize in the college town of Rutherford, Ohio. Disguised as humans, they dub themselves the Solomons. They are Dick (Lithgow), Sally (Johnston), Tommy (Joseph Gordon-Levitt), and Harry (French Stewart). On the surface, Dick is a physics professor and Tommy is his hormonally challenged 14-year-old son. In reality, Dick is the high commander, Tommy (who's actually the oldest) is the senior information officer, Sally (who's actually a man) is the lieutenant, and squinty-eyed Harry is the transmitter/receiver. And in truth, John Lithgow's performance alone is enough to warrant buying this DVD - his larger than life acting brings a great theateresque quality to the camera. Each line delivers humor, at times pointed, at other times extremely broad ... and sometimes, both at once! This set includes all 22 episodes from season 5, and on the case they claim to be uncut, however I am skeptical. There is one episode I think has been cut a bit from what I remember, but I could be wrong. Quality and sound perfect once again, and the collectible booklet is at the same level of quality we've come to expect. Bloopers are not nearly as good as the last few season selections along with fewer extras. Regardless, view the series and you will understand why this series was so beloved by people everywhere! This one's a keeper; my whole family were delighted to see it released on DVD and look forward to the release of the full run. This is a Standard Version Presentation (1.85:1) enhanced for 16x9 TVs and comes with the Special Features of:
22 episodes on 4 discs
16-Page Collectible Booklet