The Good

The acting on this show is hyper realized yet somehow spot on.

The Bad

I would like to have seen a featurette on the creation of this show.

What do you have when the Finnerty Family are dealing with sex, tattoos, bad dates, mean nuns and all other manner of jackassary? Well, it sounds like Grounded for Life: Season Four to me. In this season Sean, Claudia, Eddie and the rest of the clan experience all that's mentioned above in this out of hand 28 episode set. We open with the two parter "Your Father Should Know," but anybody who watches this show knows that it's never that simple in the Finnerty household, especially where teen sex and Sean Finnerty are concerned. Other notable episodes in this very notable crop would be "Been Caught Stealing" which should be self explanatory, but considering that this is the Finnerty family and it focuses on Sean and Eddie I'll let you figure that out for yourself. Others that also stood out were "It's Hard to Be A Saint In the City" which again has a double-entendre built into it and sees Eddie playing host in the bar on St. Patty's Day, and in the final episode "Space Camp Oddity" we see the pains of young love (but in the way that only Grounded for Life can do it).

Some people and get it and some people don't but for those that do they will find Grounded for Life: Season Four a welcome addition to their almost completed collection.

Features

Letter from the Creators

I am a big fan of these kinds of things mainly because I always love it when creators of a show address their fans. I recall that there was something like this for a season of Boy Meets World that I reviewed, and I really liked it. I feel that letters of this nature are somewhat more personal because it seems like the fans were really taken into consideration. Also, I have never felt that these sorts of things ring falsely. All in all, I think that this makes the set stand out simply because if you follow the show, you'll know that the next release is the last one.

Commentary Tracks

Video

Full Screen. This is a show that looks like something benefitted it in the compression. I have always thought that all these releases looked really sharp, and in Grounded for Life: Season Four that still holds true. What I am always amazed with is how this show is blocked. That's why I would have liked to have seen a production featurette because the shows themselves move very quickly. In fact, so much is going on these episodes even feel longer than they are.

Audio

Dolby Digital Stereo. The audio on these episodes was fine. As I mentioned above Grounded for Life does move at an almost frantic pace, and the information we receive is predominantly through the dialogue. The production must have been pretty on top of things to keep them moving as they do, and not manage to have garbled audio. Also, the blocking is such that all the actors (young and old) really have to be on their game in order to keep up with the pace of this show. Once again, I was impressed by how everything about this season came off.

Package

The Finnerty family is on hand in front of stoop with everyone looking a little older but no less worse for the wear. The back cover offers up some shots from select episodes, a description of what Grounded for Life: Season Four is about, a Features listing and system specs. All four discs that hold the 616 minutes that make up this set are nicely stored in two slim cases. There are different pictures of the Finnerty's on each cover, with episode listings and descriptions on the back. There is nothing too amazing about this set but Anchor Bay has again kept things economically sound.

Final Word

I really like this show a lot. I think that there is an honesty in the way the Finnerty family is portrayed that, while not always dealing 100% in reality, manages to always get it's point across. In Grounded for Life: Season Four the kids are getting older and that brings about it's own set of problems. Namely that when the mistakes are made they are on a grander scale. It is something like this, which throughout all it's comedy Grounded for Life never fails to address. For example , when Jimmy and Henry have a problems with a coin collection, there really is a lot more at stake than when the got into trouble when they were younger. Even amidst the comic moments that this elicits, there is still a valuable lesson to be learned about responsibility that this "funny" show doesn't avoid.

Grounded for Life was released .