April 2015: The Month in Home Media

The Month in Home Media is a monthly column highlighting short-lived or rare television series, specials, miniseries or made-for-TV movies released on DVD or Blu-ray during the previous month, as well as recent additions to streaming services like Warner Archive Instant. The releases discussed in this column are encoded for Region 1 use in the United States and Canada. The Month in Home Media is published on the first Thursday of each month.

April 2015 saw recent obscurities 1600 Penn, Wanda at Large, and The Crazy Ones released on DVD. Also, Shout! Factory will be releasing The Rebel on DVD in August and VEI will be releasing shows like Special Unit 2 and Angie sometime this year.

DVD/Blu-ray Releases

1600 Penn: The Complete Series (TV Series, 20th Century Fox, DVD)
This low-rated NBC sitcom was given a sneak preview during the 2012 Summer Olympics in December 2012 before officially premiering in January 2013. The extra exposure didn’t help and it was cancelled after 13 episodes. Manufacture-on-demand.

Wanda at Large: The Complete First Season (TV Season, Warner Archive, DVD)
Technically this 2003 FOX sitcom ran for two season but only 19 episodes were produced and five of those never aired. Wanda Sykes starred as a standup comic who becomes a political correspondent for a fictional Washington, D.C. talk show. The first season included just six episodes and aired from March to April 2003. It would have made a lot of sense to just release both seasons as a complete series set. Manufacture-on-demand.

The Crazy Ones: The Complete First Season (TV Series, 20th Century Fox, DVD)
The late Robin Williams and Sarah Michelle Gellar starred in this CBS sitcom that ran for 22 episodes during the 2013-2014 season. It premiered to high ratings but dropped dramatically over the course of the season. Manufacture-on-demand. Note: There are a lot of complaints on Amazon about discs not playing.

Dick Tracy: The Lost Shows, Volume 2 (TV Episodes, Alpha Video, DVD)
As was the case with the first volume of Dick Tracy “lost shows” Alpha Video released in November 2014, it’s unclear whether the four episodes included here are from the 1950-1951 ABC version of the series or the 1951-1952 syndicated version. Manufacture-on-demand.

DVD/Blu-ray News

Earlier this week, Visual Entertainment, Inc. (VEI) announced it will be releasing a slew of TV shows on DVD later this year, including several somewhat forgotten/obscure shows like Petrocelli (CBS, 1974-1976), Angie (ABC, 1979-1980), Martial Law (CBS, 1998-2000), and Special Unit 2 (UPN, 2001-2002). Here‘s the TVShowsOnDVD.com post about Special Unit 2 with details on VEI’s announcement.

Shout! Factory will release a complete series DVD set containing all 76 black-and-white episodes of The Rebel (ABC, 1959-1961) — plus bonus features — on August 18th. Read more about the release here. My article about the half-hour Western, which starred Nick Adams, can be found here.

Streaming

There were no new additions to Warner Archive Instant or Hulu. Warner Archive Instant removed A Man Called Shenandoah as well as the TV series Man from Atlantis but not the four pilot telefilms.

Hit the comments with any news about upcoming DVD/Blu-ray releases or additions to streaming services.


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