Another great review on the upcoming Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour DVD that is being released this coming Tuesday, March 13th by Stuart Galbraith IV in DVD Talk.
CBS's release of The Lucille Ball - Desi Arnaz Show, under the somewhat misleading I Love Lucy: The Final Seasons: 7, 8 & 9 offers all 13 shows in excellent transfers and is supplemented with an overwhelming multitude of extra features.
The Lucille Ball - Desi Arnaz Show looks great, with near-flawless full-frame black and white transfers that are impressively sharp with little signs of wear. "Lucy Takes a Cruise to Havana" reportedly was restored using a recently-discovered 35mm print, but it looks as good as everything else. The 13 shows are spread over four single-sided, double-layered discs, with 3-4 episodes per DVD.
Beyond all the reinstated footage, that show features its original titles and Arnaz's introduction and close. Subsequent episodes use The Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour moniker, with voice over by an uncredited Marvin Miller. The shows are complete and not time-compressed.
The impressive line-up of supplements include extensive material on the "Lucy Takes a Cruise to Havana" episode, with alternate versions of scenes used for the cut shown in reruns. "Flubs" notes little goofs that made it into the final cut of episodes and is a neat little feature.
Other highlights include three original Ford Motor commercials; and a 40-minute Desliu/Westinghouse Sponsor Presentation.
Fans of the original I Love Lucy will be especially delighted to see on-set color footage surreptitiously shot on 16mm film by a member of the audience. From his vantage point we see the big, roving cameras and the like swirling around the sets representing Ricky's Tropicana Night Club and the Ricardo's apartment, all in full color. This is integrated with footage from the actual episode, and makes a fascinating historical document.
Also included are a promo for the series' rebroadcast in 1965, new animated titles for I Love Lucy when that series was rerun in the summer of 1957.
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