This is one of those shows that always seems to work.
With all the extras a commentary track would have been nice.
Grounded for Life: Season 2 continues the exploits of the Finnerty Family as we see the kids, the parents and everyone else do their best to grow up and get by. Featuring many laugh soaked episodes, I think we are getting Donal Logue and the rest of the cast doing some of their best work. Whether an episode centers around the use of the family car, or a misunderstanding about something Sean or Claudia said to the kids, or even a problem provoked by Grandpa Walt, what keeps this show so vibrant is how much emphasis and respect it pays to the family unit.
I hadn't ever watched Grounded for Life until I was asked to review the first season on DVD. I became a fan of this show then, and I am an even bigger fan now, simply because I have so much respect for the thoughtful and open environment this show had. Also, I believe it was one of the first shows to present children of Baby Boomers, and as such that created a unique perspective to bring viewers into this world.
A quickly cut together reel featuring some of the mistakes that occurred when this show was shooting. While there isn't anything groundbreaking about this, I think fans of the show (and the actors) will find watching this to be a great deal of fun. As I usually remark, we are so used to seeing the actors putting on a public face when they are interviewed, it's nice to see all of that get shattered here.
From Ashes to Ashton
Ashton Kutcher appeared on this show playing Uncle Scott. While I think it would be wrong to say that "he always had it" (based on his performance here), mainly because I am still trying to figure out what he's done that's so great. I mean, aside from slowing down the amount of movies he does, that seems to be the thing that has separated him the most from his peer group. This is worth a look simply because Kutcher, despite all the hoopla, is genuinely engaging.
He Ain't Eddie, He's My Brother
Kevin Corrigan is one of those actors that seems like he's gotten past over somewhat, yet he acts like that's where he wants to be. In this new interview he discusses playing Eddie, working with the other actors on the show, and what it's like working in TV and film. While I had always thought he would be more congenial, he talks just enough hear to avoid pretension.
These are interviews with Jake Burbage and Griffin Frazen who play Henry and Jimmy Finnerty on the show. They discuss what it was like being younger and doing this show, but considering that this show went off the air in 2005, this doesn't have the same effect that say, seeing Ben Seaver (Jeremy Miller) from Growing Pains in 2006 does.
Full Screen - There is a crispness and alive quality to this show that I don't many others have. While I wouldn't call the lighting scheme, or the way this show is blocked, anything new, I would say that it does look different than a lot of sitcoms. I think because of the brightness of this show, it's almost as if there is a hyper reality to all the characters and their actions. Also, I think the DVDs could have been compressed in such a way to make sure that none of the picture deteriorated during it's time stored in the vault.
Dolby Digital 2.0. The audio is one department, in as far as sitcoms are concerned, that I don't think much can really be said. I was able to hear everything that was spoken by the characters, and within this medium I think that that is probably what is most important. If you are looking for something beyond that, I really wouldn't suggest watching this kind of TV.
The Finnerty clan is well represented on this front cover. They stand before a solitary piece of delicious looking chocolate cake, smiling for the camera. The back cover shows us some random pictures from a few of the episodes, it offers up a description of what Grounded for Life: Season 2 has on it, Special Features and some technical specs. All three discs are neatly housed inside this set, which contains more artwork and episode listings and descriptions once it is opened up. Anchor Bay has again kept things economical while not sacrificing any of the quality of it's packaging.
Why did this show only run for 5 seasons? While I know that that is certainly a respectable run, I just thought that it might have run longer. Following in the footsteps of similar themed shows like Roseanne, it would seem that Grounded for Life could have pulled some more seasons out of it's proverbial hat. Also, considering the quick pace that this show moved at, and all the children were really beginning to grow up, I could see Sean and Claudia Finnerty truly starting to have their hands full.
Grounded for Life: Season 2 works because there is something honest and genuine about it. It doesn't aspire to be something that it isn't, and it also goes out of it's way to toy with convention. Also, the title of the show being a double entendre that works for both the parents and the kids, also lets us know how different the adults aren't from the children.
Grounded for Life was released .