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Category:    Home > Reviews > TV Situation Comedy > The Drew Carey Show – The Complete First Season

The Drew Carey Show – The Complete First Season


Picture: C+     Sound: C+     Extras: C+     Episodes: C+



Drew Carrey has never been the height of comedic standards, but has shown enough pizzazz and talent over the years to gain a following.  Now on DVD is The Drew Carey Show: The Complete First Season.  The series that ran for nearly a decade did not have an easy start; barely making the top 50 shows in the Nielson Ratings.  The series, however, did pick up some speed and popularity as the seasons went on and as the series realized what it wanted to be; attempting to make the perfect blend of not too serious yet not too off the wall.  This particular Season of The Drew Carey Show was not this reviewer’s favorite, by comparison to the later seasons but viewers can definitely see the comedic potentially the series held by the end of the First Season.  Season Two taking great leaps and bounds in comedic performance and storyline development (but audiences will have to wait for that season on DVD).


The series events are supposedly based off ‘real life experiences’ of series creator and star Drew Carey, and whereas this is somewhat believable in the First Season as the series progresses, this claim is almost ridiculous.  The First Season is much different from the rest of the series, centering mainly on Drew Carey’s office life and oddball characters that are never reprised in later seasons.  Examples of this are in characters such as Drew’s Boss Mr. Bell (who only exists as a voice on the office intercom), Drew’s girlfriend Lisa, and Drew’s hick neighbor Jules and his misfit family.  Mr. Bell was very lackluster in comparison to Mr. Wick, Drew’s later boss.  Lisa was an odd fit with the rest of the cast and was quickly disposed of.  And Jules and his family were never heard from again.


Basically, Season One acted as a large, large pilot season, not much staying around for the later seasons.  The one concept that was introduced in the last episode of Season One, the caffeinated Buzz Beer, was the one good idea that lasted the whole series run.  Overall, The Drew Carey Show gained a great following in the next several seasons and definitely established itself as a part of television history.


The technical features of this 4 Disc 489 minute Season are not bad but not great.  The picture is presented in a mostly clear 1.33:1 Full Screen image.  The image at times seems a bit rougher than should be expected as well as the color quality being skewed, but still decent.  The Sound is presented in the all too common Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo that does not thrill or excite, but in actuality this First Season does not call for any fancy sound work with even the theme song being a lackluster bore.  The Extras are not great but have their merits.  The Extras present include a cast interview segment entitled ‘Life Inside The Cubicle’ that is nice to see since it preserves the cast’s personal reflections and a MiMi Spoof entitled ‘1-900-MiMi’ that did not thrill this reviewer.


In the end, this First Season was just a good and solid test run for what was to come.  So join Diedrich Bader, Ryan Stiles, Christa Miller, and Drew Carey for the first 22 Episodes of a series that was sure to go far.



-   Michael P Dougherty II


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