Thursday, May 23, 2013

The last Perry DVD release

Before the summer is out, it will be possible to own every season of Perry uncut.

(And why in the world does the price of Part 2 of season 8 keep maddeningly fluctuating? What’s so special about that part that causes it alone to continually be more expensive than any other part? It’s very exasperating, particularly since I really want some of the episodes on it.)

It’s going to be a bittersweet moment, once the collection of Perry releases is complete. Of course for me, I’ll still have quite a few to collect even after I snap up season 9, since I haven’t been going in order. But for anyone, once they add the volume that completes their personal collection, wow. No more Perry releases to look forward to and no more uncut episodes to discover. Well, not unless you’re a fan of the movies anxiously hoping and waiting for their DVD releases.

(I think the movies look fun, honestly, from clips I’ve seen. But I still haven’t watched any of them in full. It just seems so sad with most of the cast not around to be in them. I rarely ever watch reunion movies for any show, largely because of feeling sad and finding it empty without all the cast there.)

Amazon currently seems to have some great deals on several Perry seasons. This is an excellent time to buy anything from season 1 through the first half of season 5. I’m particularly amazed by the prices for season 3. Wow! Why is it so low at the moment, I wonder?

For those following the works of any of the cast members, there’s likely still quite a bit to discover and look forward to in addition to Perry. I’ve barely made a dent in what’s out there for some of the cast.

I wish more of the old anthology shows were available. So many of the cast members appeared in multiple episodes of multiple anthology shows. As long as those remain unreleased (or possibly can’t be released because prints no longer exist), there will always be a large space in the available collections for the actors’ works that can’t be filled.

If prints do still exist, I wonder why they don’t make more of them available. Surely there’s an audience for them; it seems that almost anyone who loves classic television and/or old dramas in general would enjoy giving them at least a try. I usually greatly enjoy whatever I manage to see of those programs. And I’ve dug up some rare gems for some of my favorite actors that way.

But in any case, I’m grateful for what’s out there and am very excited by any new releases of material the cast members have appeared in. They keep coming, as it seems that there’s at least one Perry connection with almost every one of the classic television shows that’s been released (and some that haven’t been).
It gets particularly interesting when there are shows that feature one or more cast members in familiar roles, or even roles with a Perry connection (lawyer, detective, policeman) but different from the roles they played on Perry. There's Richard Anderson playing a prosecutor in the short-lived television series Bus Stop and on Mannix. And there's countless guest-spots of his as policemen, including on The Fugitive and The Mod Squad.
William Talman plays a prosecutor in the film The Ballad of Josie and a policeman in The Racket. Ray Collins plays a district attorney in the latter film (albeit a crooked one). Wesley Lau often plays policemen in various movies and television series.

And then there's roles that really have no Perry slant but are still such fun to watch. There's Barbara Hale as a worried mother on Adam-12. William Talman as an alien (!) on The Invaders. Wesley Lau as the head of security at a top-secret military base on The Time Tunnel. Raymond Burr as the chief of police in the very first Dragnet episode.

So many exciting and enjoyable things to seek out and watch! There will never be another Perry Mason season release after August, but there's plenty of fun to be had in watching our talented cast in all manner of shows.

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