What Time Is It? It’s Tool Time! Home Improvement was based on a stand-up routine that made a name for Tim Allen. In his act he would talk about his experiences with power tools and other manly misadventures. He came across as a comedic Bob Vila. Somewhere along the line it was decided this had the makings of a good sitcom for television. It was a rather inspired idea, and for many years it was one of the funnier shows on the tube. I often find myself referring to the show as Tool Time, which in reality is the cabl… handyman show Tim hosts. The reason for this almost constant confusion is simple. It is the Tool Time bits where the show was always at its best. Tim’s rapport with co-host Al Borland (Karn) is always worth a few laughs. Tim lived next door to Wilson (Hindman) who often had long winded words of wisdom when Tim found himself befuddled by life’s complications. As a running gag, we never see Wilson’s face below the nose. Most of the time the privacy fence they spoke over served to cover these areas, but often other well placed items did the job. Tim had a family. His wife, Jill (Richardson) tolerated Tim’s antics, all the while seeing him as an adolescent. The couple had three kids who were quite young as the show began. By season 6 the boys had grown, which demanded more screen and story time. Now there lives have dominated many episodes to the point that Home Improvement became almost a Brady Bunch instead of the more amusing fare it started as. There’s still plenty to laugh at here, but it’s just not as funny as it once was. Combine the older family with 6 years of the tool bits and Home Improvement was running its batteries down a bit. The show had only 2 more years left in it by this time. It might have been better to stop after 5.
Home Improvement is appropriately presented in its original full frame 1.33:1 format. While this is a fairly recent series, it was merely a sitcom. Not to degrade the genre, but the studios don’t put a tremendous amount of production value in that kind of a series. Still, colors are solid. Black levels are average. This is pretty much as good as this kind of programming gets. Better overall than the broadcast versions.
Dialogue is pretty much all you should care about in this Dolby Digital 2.0 track, and it delivers just fine. The show’s trademark sound effects are there just as you remembered with no problems at all.
Just a funny gag reel.
Season 6 is not a good place to start if you are thinking about catching the show for the first time. While some shows might be hitting their stride, Home Improvement is not one of them. Seasons 2 through 4 offer the very best the show had to offer, The only real reason for getting this set is for those intent on having the entire run. Sure, these might not be the most shining examples of Home Improvement, but don’t judge the entire show on a sub par season. After all: “Everybody poops”.
Special Features List
- Gag Reel