DVD Tuesday: Ellery Queen, Rich Man, Poor Man

Every Tuesday I take a look at obscure and/or classic television programs, specials, miniseries or made-for-TV movies being released on DVD. For the record I consider anything broadcast prior to 1980 to be classic or else there wouldn’t be much to discuss. The releases referred to in these posts are encoded for Region 1 use in the United States and Canada.

Out today from E1 Entertainment is Ellery Queen Mysteries, which collects all 22 episodes of the 1975-1976 NBC mystery series starring Tim Hutton and David Wayne. Also included is the pilot telefilm, broadcast in March 1975, that launched the series as well as an interview with series co-creator William Link. A DVD Town review calls the interview “pretty average” but raves about the “Ellery Queen Mysteries Reference Guide” that comes with the set.

Also out today, from A&E Home Video, is Rich Man, Poor Man: The Complete Collection. The set includes two complete miniseries: Rich Man, Poor Man and Rich Man, Poor Man Book II, both of which aired on ABC in 1976. Rich Man, Poor Man was released on VHS in the early 1990s and both miniseries have been available on DVD internationally for several years. This is the first DVD release for Region 1, however. I believe the only bonus feature is a commentary for the first installment of Rich Man, Poor Man featuring Peter Strauss and television historian David Bianculli.

Shout! Factory is releasing Rhoda: Volume One today, although I’m not sure why. The inexpensive one-disc volume includes six episodes; according to the Shout! Factory website the episodes are the first six from Season Two. Finally, out today are four new one-disc releases from Alpha Video, each featuring four episodes: Adventures Of Robin Hood, Volume 22, Lights Out, Volume 8, Public Defender, Volume 5, Sheriff Of Cochise, Volume 2 and Sheriff Of Cochise, Volume 3 .


  • ejp says:

    I just watched the pilot film “Too Many Suspects” on the DVD set and unfortunately the producers have made an inexcusable tampering to the opening credits. When “Too Many Suspects” first aired on NBC it was aired as an NBC Mystery Movie special with the NBC Mystery Movie opening but with an announcer then saying, “Tonight, Jim Hutton as Ellery Queen”. Well the producers of this set found that original audio BUT, they have played it over the film’s opening credits in place of the familiar Elmer Bernstein theme music when that is not how it should be done. I am assuming that a rights issue would keep them from using the original Mystery Movie opening with the flashlight etc. since that would mean we’d be seeing “Columbo”, “McCloud”, “McMillan And Wife” credits before the announcement, but the audio should have been presented as a supplement, not over the film’s true opening credits.

  • Pb says:

    None of the “Wheel” movies in syndication use the original openning either.

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