Special note must be made of Shandling's handwritten menus, another terrific personal touch that crops up at various points on every disc. Be sure to click on the "I don't want to watch ..." option on the main menu for Disc 1. And (without giving too much away), look for Bruno Kirby's appearance at the close of the documentary on Disc 4. Perfectly poignant.
I've barely mentioned the show itself - that's how good the extras are. Shandling has chosen to hand-pick 23 episodes from the series' run of 89 so that there's not a dud in the bunch. And the informative commentaries only add to the fun. Shandling and writer/producer Peter Tolan have an easy rapport in the bookended talks on the first and the last episodes. Their analyses should be required listening for any actor or creator who dares to say in a commentary, "I don't remember what we did here."
Surround sound is used sparingly - mainly during the opening sequences when the show's theme is played (Lost fans will note that said theme's main melody is the same as that for Drive Shaft's one-verse, one-hit wonder "You All Everybody") or whenever the audience responds to something during the talk-show segments. Picture quality ping-pongs pretty much as you'd expect between the grainy, close-to-documentary style used for the behind-the-scenes/office/"real-life" scenes and the clearly videotaped talk-show bits.
Downsides? There are no downsides. If you want to see TV at its finest, both in front of and behind the camera, get this box immediately. [TV-MA] English, Dolby Surround; full frame (1.33:1); four dual-layer discs.
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