There are two kinds of men on the planet; those that are fans of Gilligan‘s Island, and those that are not. Now, every man will gladly participate in the Ginger vs. Mary Ann debate, but as for actually liking the show for it’s intended purpose, that‘s something different altogether. I must admit, I am not a fan. I find the show unbearably lame, and have a hard time putting aside my desire for quality programming to enjoy the campy and carefree nature of the classic series.
There are a whopping 32 epi…odes in this season, which is a lot even by today’s standards. Furthermore, the episodes have all been crammed onto three double-sided discs, which makes this season set a real value. Warner Brothers always does a great job of making their classic television sets as economical as possible, and this one is no exception. All of this, coupled with the fact that there were only three seasons in the life of this show, makes the decision to collect this series an easy one for true Island fans.
This show was (obviously) originally recorded in English Mono, and no changes have been made for this release. As a result, all of the original production audio comes from the center channel speaker. Though the audio is not dynamic, the dialog is clear, which is really all that maters with this show. If you are looking for something to show off your home theater, however, this is not even close to being what you are looking for.
I can only imagine the excitement that fans of this show must have experienced when they first tuned in to see season two and discovered… the castaways are in color! This is a program that simply begged to be broadcast in glorious color due to its fabulous exotic locations and bright colorful wardrobe. The transfer here is a faithful representation of those early days of color television… it’s poor compared with a modern episode of Seinfeld, but stunning when compared to the black and white episodes of the previous season. This DVD set is embarassingly overblown with color. It is simply comical by today‘s standards, but authentic to the original broadcast quality.
The full frame transfer is mostly clean, though there are some blemishes and grain scattered throughout. Edges are clean, but strong colors such as the red on Bob Denver‘s shirt tend to bleed quite badly. This set really is no big visual improvement over the shows that you have already experienced on broadcast television.
This set leaves fans stranded when it comes to extras. In fact, there are just two bonus features on the entire set. Once is a commentary on the episode The Little Dictatorby show creator Sherwood Schwartz. This is a great and informative commentary , and it really made me wish that Sherwood had taken the time to lend his wisdom to a few more episodes as well.
The other extra is a season introduction featuring Russell Johnson (The Professor) and show Creator/Producer Sherwood Schwartz. Topics covered include a brief color comparison, character development, the use of freelance writers, costuming and decency, critic reaction and so on. It is a shame that the informative piece only runs a scant six minutes.
Gilligan’s second year is criminally short on extras, but the set makes up for it with the sheer volume of the episodes and low price point. Those of you that would like to be able to see these adventures whenever you like will be pleased with this set. If you are looking for something more, however, you will not find it here. The extras are great, but they will only keep viewers entertained for a very short time.
Special Features List
- Introduction by Russell Johnson (The Professor)and Creator/Producer Sherwood Schwartz
- Commentary on Episode #3 by Creator/Producer Sherwood Schwartz