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Category:    Home > Reviews > TV Situation Comedy > Politics > Religion > Social Issues > All In The Family – The Complete Seventh Season (1976 – 1977/Shout! Factory DVD Set)

All In The Family (1976 - 1977/Shout! Factory DVD Set)


Picture: C     Sound: C+     Extras: D     Episodes: B



The DVD releases of All In The Family are still happening season by season, despite increasing gaps in those sets.  Long before this site launched, several classics seasons arrived and by the time we were in that loop, Sony was up to Season Six, which one of the show’s #1 fans covered at this link:





Since then, the show has seen no new sets and many wondered why Sony just did not issue a Complete Series set.  Instead, they are resuming four years later with the series by licensing it to Shout! Factory with The Complete Seventh Season.  The shows original arc was starting to wind down and the 23 half hours here on three DVDs include several multi-episodes storylines (Archie’s Brief Encounter, The Unemployment Story, Archie’s Operation; which opened up the season in that order and definitely were designed to boost ratings which were already high) and all this while its many spin-offs (The Jeffersons, Good Times, Maude) were doing so well.


I give the cast credit for still being able to be the characters and do them so well at a time when they could have become bored and just did not care, but this was a series with more ideas, energy and challenges to the audience in how they thought about race, economy, relationships and ethnicity than any other show in TV history and it shook up the industry in a way many still cannot believe and many tried to roll back in the 1980s.  All this coming out of a British TV hit called Till Death Do Us Part, which starred the great Warren Mitchell in the Archie Bunker-like role of Alf Garnett.


I would recommend starting at the beginning, but All In The Family - The Complete Seventh Season holds up very well 35 (yes, you read that correctly) years and it is safe to say no TV series and especially TV sitcom has been as bold in dealing with issues until the cycle of mature animation comedies (Daria, South Park, Family Guy) showed up.  Yes, it is that good.


The 1.33 X 1 image on each of the DVDs may have good color, but we get aliasing errors and digititis throughout that plagues these transfers just too much.  New transfers from the original masters with advanced NTSC decoding is needed, while the Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono fares better sounding good for its age despite the usually limited fidelity for sitcoms of the time.  There are no extras.



-   Nicholas Sheffo


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