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.
November 2015 was a pretty good one for short-lived TV shows. The big news was the release of Hank (NBC, 1965-1966) on DVD. Two sci-fi shows from producer Glen A. Larson came out on DVD last month as well: Manimal (NBC, 1983) and Automan (ABC, 1983-1984). Also, two recent obscurities: Cristela (ABC, 2014-2015) and Weird Loners (FOX, 2015).
Hank: The Complete Series (TV Series, Warner Archive, DVD)
When rumors that this one season wonder was going to be released on DVD started circulating I wasn’t sure I believed them. Then Warner Archive started posting things ton Facebook. Then the official announcement was made. The 3-disc set includes all 26 color episodes (the series premiere was produced and broadcast in black-and-white). The sitcom aired on NBC from 1965-1966 and is perhaps most notable for featuring a true series finale. Manufacture-on-demand.
Manimal: The Complete Series (TV Series, Shout! Factory, DVD)
Ah, Manimal. Widely regarded as one of the worst TV shows of all time, it stared Simon MacCorkindale as Jonathan Chase, a professor with the ability to transform into any animal who fights crime. Only eight episodes were produced and broadcast by NBC during the 1983-1984 season. This 3-disc set includes all of those episodes as well as an interview with creator Glen A. Larson, production notes, galleries, and more. A review can be found at InsidePulse.
Automan: The Complete Series (TV Series, Shout! Factory, DVD)
Another sci-fi series produced by Glen A. Larson, Automan survived slightly longer than Manimal. It ran for 12 episodes on ABC during the 1983-1984 season with one additional episode produced by not aired. All 13 episodes are included in this 3-disc set, which also features a documentary. A review can be found at InsidePulse.
Cristela: The Complete First Season (TV Series, 20th Century Fox, DVD)
ABC cancelled this sitcom after its first season, so while the title of this DVD is technically correct it may also be a little misleading. Cristela Alonzo co-created and starred in the series, which ran for 22 episodes during the 2014-2015 season. Manufacture-on-demand.
Weird Loners: The Complete Series (TV Series, 20th Century Fox, DVD)
Weird Loners ran for just six episodes from March to May 2015. It starred Becki Newton, Zachary Knighton, Nate Torrence, and Meera Rohit Kumbhani as four weird people living in New York City who wind up living in the same townhouse. Manufacture-on-demand.
The Rebel: Season Two (TV Season, Timeless Media Group, DVD)
If you bought the complete series set for The Rebel back when it was released in August, there’s no reason to pick up this standalone 6-disc set featuring all 40 episodes broadcast on ABC during the 1960-1961 season.
The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson – Featured Guests Volumes 7-12 (TV Episodes, Carson Entertainment Group, DVD)
These six single-disc volumes include episodes from the 1970s, 1980s, and 1990s with guests Steve Martin, Rodney Dangerfield, George Carlin, Eddie Murphy, Joan Embery, and Jim Fowler. Altogether, the six volumes feature 16 episodes with commercials.
VEI announced last month it will be releasing a slew of one season wonders on DVD at some point in the future, including The Immortal (ABC, 1970-1971), The Magician (NBC, 1973-1974), Level 9 (UPN, 2000-2001), and Jake 2.0 (UPN, 2003-2004). Details can be found here.
Recent obscurity Forever, which ran on ABC during the 2014-2015 season, will be released on DVD by Warner Archive in 2016 (TVShowsOnDVD.com).
Cult classic Freaks and Geeks will be released on Blu-ray by Shout! Factory on March 22nd, 2016 (TVShowsOnDVD.com).
There were no additions to Warner Archive Instant or Hulu last month.
Hit the comments with any news about upcoming DVD/Blu-ray releases or additions to streaming services.