Sunday, March 22, 2009

Ilene Graff Blog Talk Radio Interview

Check out this thirty minute interview with Ilene Graff for Blog Talk Radio. It's available as both streaming and for download.

Thanks to Adrian for the tip!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Mr. Belvedere Season 1 and 2 DVD Review

I've been a fan of this show for a long time. So much of a fan that I created one of the longest running fan sites on Mr. Belvedere on the Internet, online in some form or the other since 1998. That's Eleven Years now. Oh man. I've since carved a sizable career as an artist in another field, but this show still has a pull on me that I can't explain.

I've been waiting for this DVD for a long time, and quite honestly, I really can't be expected to give an objective review. I'll still try and offer my thoughts nevertheless.

I would like to make it clear that for this particular post, I will not make any comment about specific story points, because I will be doing individual reviews of each and every episode.

I like the packaging of this DVD because of it's "home-y" feel. It's feels like a photo album, which is reflected in the opening credits of the first episode, where photos of the cast, as if gathered from a photo album, are shown one after the other.

5 discs containing 29 episodes of the first and second seasons are housed in three thin plastic casings within a sturdy slipcase. I like the packaging because it's not too bulky.

The decision by SHOUT! Factory to release Season 1 and 2, instead of a "best of" set is a very good, and very hopeful indication that they will push through with the rest of the series. The way this first set is packaged, it's only logical to expect that Season 3 and 4 will go in one package, then season 5 and 6 will go in a third set. Fingers crossed!

The picture is better than I remember them being, watching them on cable many years ago. It's not as good as the picture quality of say, Three's Company on DVD, but I suppose these are the best prints that can be found. And they're good enough for me.

There is a pretty good bonus feature with four cast members reminiscing about the show. They give rather illuminating insight into what goes on behind the scenes, specially with regards to Bob Uecker. I wish it were longer, but that's just me.

With Christopher Hewett gone, the only remaining cast member not included in the new interviews is Tracy Wells. In an interview with Star 102.5 in Buffalo, Brice Beckham has a possible explanation. Tracy may well have been unable to join the interviews because of a previous commitment. I'm sure we'll hear from her in future DVD releases.

Another extra includes a Saturday Night Live sketch, "The Mr. Belvedere Fan Club" sketch with Tom Hanks. SNL sketches are a hit and miss for me, but this one was actually kind of funny.

There's an unlisted bonus feature here, which is Stewie of Family Guy singing the theme song to Mr. Belvedere. But as it's integrated into the interview section, I suppose they opted not to mention it. But I thought I would, because it's kind of cool.

I'm glad for the features that's there, but it leaves me hoping for other stuff like perhaps a Christopher Hewett tribute. Perhaps interviews with the creators of the show. Jeff Stein has a pretty frank and illuminating interview for and it would be pretty interesting what more he has to say. I think there is a certain aspect of the show that a lot of people have missed, that of the subversive nature of the writing which would be great to spotlight.

Well, it's wishful thinking, but a commentary track or two would be AWESOME.

Thanks to everyone at SHOUT! Factory for making this DVD happen. It's been a long time coming, but I'm glad it's here!

Detroit News DVD Contest!

Mekeisha Madden Toby of the Detroit News has a contest which will give you the chance to win the DVD!

"Mr. Belvedere" Is Released by Shout!

DVD Review from

"Mr. Belvedere was designed as a vehicle for Bob Uecker but emerged as an ensemble comedy that was pleasant-enough family fare for an Eighties' Sitcom."

DVD Review by James Plath for

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Listen To Brice Beckham's Radio Interview

John Anthony of Star 102.5 at Buffalo, NY interviewed Brice Beckham last March 17 and the interview is now up for listening/download at John's blog site here.

Thanks John!

Monday, March 16, 2009

Mr. Belvedere Trending HOTLY on Google

It can only mean good news for the Mr. Belvedere DVD set when it's one of the hottest trends on Google right now.

As of March 16,Google rates "Mr. Belvedere" as VOLCANIC on the trend scale. I don't know how long it lasts, but hopefully, it encourages people to check out the DVD, or let fans of the show who might not know the DVD is coming that it's finally here.


Incidentally, Belated Happy Birthday to TRACY WELLS who celebrated her 38th birthday last March 13. Happy Birthday Tracy! We missed you on the Mr. Belvedere DVD!

Mr. Belvedere is HERE!

My Mr. Belvedere Season 1 and 2 DVD set is here! Yeah! Am I gonna watch it now? I wish I could, but it's work hours so I have to wait until later. But I am very excited.

I plan on posting extensive episode by episode recap/review/commentary of the entire series right on this blog. Starting very soon!

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Brice Beckham Radio Interview

Brice Beckham will be interviewed on radio at Star 102.5 in Buffalo, NY, "as close to" 6:15pm EST on Tuesday, March 17th.

The station can be heard online here:

STAR 102.5 WTSS Buffalo Radio

Brice's interview will be posted later, minus the music, at the station's blog page.

Thanks to John Anthony!

John Anthony's blog post on Mr. Belvedere:

Friday, March 6, 2009

Jeff Stein Interview

Jeff Stein was one executive producers and creators of the Mr. Belvedere TV show and Jaime Weinman of spoke to him about the show and the upcoming DVD release.

Here is an excerpt of the article:

Watching the show again on Shout! Factory’s five-disc DVD set — which includes the first season of seven episodes (it was a mid-season replacement) and the 22-episode second season — I think the reason for the enduring cult appeal of Mr. Belvedere is the fact that it was one of the few family sitcoms of the era where the characters were dysfunctional and openly hostile, within the boundaries of the need to have everyone make up and learn something by the end of the episode. The character of the youngest kid, Wesley (Brice Beckham) was particularly popular with kids because he was an out-and-out brat, a self-described sociopath with destructive urges who is basically evil even when he tries to do the right thing. He really does seem like the prototype for Bart Simpson, especially when you learn in one episode that his parents had to get married because the mom was already pregnant.

Stein says that their approach to writing the show was that “since nobody at the studio or network level was interested in smart, we tried to make it as subversive as possible.”

Read the full article here:
TV On DVD: Notes On MR. BELVEDERE From the Executive Producer

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Early DVD Reviews

From Sitcoms Online:

"We just might live the good life yet! This set is awesome. Brian Blum has done an excellent job with this set for Shout! The packaging is great, the menus are clever, the episodes are in their original form, and we get all-new interviews with the cast."

More at the link.

From DVD Talk:

"It's probably nowhere to be found on your average "Top 10 Sitcoms" list, but Frank Dungan and Jeff Stein's Mr. Belvedere (1985-1990) managed to entertain enough audiences to last six seasons."

More at the link.