This show was a great middleground for both kids and adults.
No commentary tracks? Sparse extras.
Melrose Place: The Complete First Season comes to us with 8 discs but it is sadly lacking in the special features department. Aside from that, this show about a group of people living in a trendy Melrose apartment building in L.A. was pretty much responsible for bringing soft, soft, soft core styled porn to prime time. Although none of the characters ever appeared naked on this show, Aaron Spelling knew just what to do to get the fans watching. Also, this show really showed us the power that Heather Locklear could have not only on viewers, but on the people creating the show and paying her salary. It dealt very frankly with sex, homosexuality, and just about every other hot button issue. The fact that it functioned so liberally in such a conservative industry is what really got people watching. If characters were going to make out, they made out, and that often led to a lot more than a simple kiss.
This show followed Jake, Jo, Billy, Allison, Amanda, Michael and all the rest who came into and out of this world as they lived and loved it up to their hearts content. There are fights, moments of despair, talk of abortions, threats of legal action, and just about everything else that could happen to these "drama queens" in Los Angeles. I don't think it's any great surprise that Aaron Spelling set a show about these kinds of people in this part of the country. Where else would he have been able to set such a self absorbed group of people if not Melrose Place?
Behind the Scenes
A behind the scenes look at this show that was fine for me because I am not a rabid Melrose Place fan, but something tells me that the people who are will be somewhat disappointed by these DVD offerings. For all that we get to see, I never felt that I got a feeling for what life was like on this show. It takes us into the world but I never felt like I got any great revelations about how the shows came together, why they chose to follow certain themes, or why any of the characters did the things they did.
Style Profile Featurette
A featurette that examines the look and the character's looks on this show. While not the most amazing thing I have ever seen, I think it is very interesting to see how much a show like this can influence fashion. While today we might look at the way these characters were dressed and wonder what they were thinking, it would be wrong to not at least be impressed with how cutting edge this show was for it's time.
Full Screen. The years may have changed a lot but the people on this show look as good as they ever have. Sure, there is a lot of drama going on that is somewhat laughable (especially considering how much the issues of the day have evolved), but overall this show is wrought with a simple style that really paves the way for the stories to take center stage. The TV I viewed these episodes on was quite small, but I still think that I was able to get all the nuances that the episodes were putting off. At 1510 minutes this show has very much retained it's sparkling quality.
Dolby Digital Stereo. The audio on these discs was solid. It is hard for me to judge how good or bad the audio is mainly because A) I usually only notice if there is a problem if there is a problem, and B) I don't have a system that can really demonstrate just how great the audio is supposed to be. I will say this, Melrose Place holds up very well against anything that is on TV today, and aside from being dated (how can a show from the past not be?), I wasn't distracted at all as a viewer.
That cast of this show is presented in small pictures with the dazzling lights of Los Angeles seeming to move very quickly behind them. The back cover shows us some shots from the show, gives consumers a description, a Special Features listing, and system specs for their units. With 8 discs in tow, this set feels a bit heavier than usual, but Paramount has done a very good job of keeping everything contained. Inside is more artwork, episode listings and other such things to help people navigate around this DVD set.
This show single-handedly brought Heather Locklear back into the public eye. Having been very young when she first came on the scene as a model, I sadly didn't pay much attention to her when she was in T.J. Hooker. Suddenly, this older woman comes onto this show with a hot cast, and she is the reason that it becomes successful and ends up running for seven years. While I am sure that actors like Laura Leighton and Josie Bisset didn't hurt matters, I think there is definitely a reason why Locklear is featured on the top, dead center of this DVD set's front cover. Truthfully, I only watched a couple of seasons of this show, and even when I did that, I didn't watch every episode. I am not sure why it is but I eventually fell out of favor with Melrose Place. Maybe I didn't relate to it like I sort of it did with Beverly Hills 90210?
Whatever the reason might be, I am casual fan of this show, but I know that Melrose Place: The Complete First Season, despite a dearth of Special Features, is going to make a lot of TV on DVD Collectors very happy.
Melrose Place was released .