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MADtv: The Complete Second Season DVD Review - Page 2 of 2

MADtv: The Complete Second Season DVD cover art -- click to buy from Amazon.com MADtv: Season Two (1996-97)
Show & DVD Details

Executive Producers: Fax Bahr, Adam Small (also TV developers); David Salzman, Quincy Jones, Steven Haft

Staff Writers: Fax Bahr, Garry Campbell, Blaine Capatch, Lauren Dombrowski, Chris Finn, Spencer Green, Tim Hightower, Brad Kaaya, Patton Oswalt, Adam Small, Mary Elizabeth Williams, Stuart Blumberg / Writing Supervisor: Brian Hartt / Select Sketch Writers: Leonard Dick, Brian Hartt, Mary Scheer, Steve Hibbert / Directors: John Blanchard, Gene Crowe; Matt Davis (segment)

Regular Cast: Bryan Callen, David Herman, Orlando Jones, Phil LaMarr, Artie Lange, Mary Scheer, Nicole Sullivan, Debra Wilson, Pablo Francisco, Tim Conlon

Guest Stars: Christina Applegate, Ice-T, Hot Dolla, Mr. Wesside, Powerlord Jell, Kim Coles, Jack Wagner, Taylor Negron, Neve Campbell, St. James Sanctuary Singers, Craig Anton, Kevin McDonald, Tony Cox (Mr. White), Joe Rogan, French Stewart, Harry Connick, Jr., The Funk Band, Andrea Martin, Tiny Lister (Bouncer), Brian Bosworth, Dom Irrera, Rodney Dangerfield, Queen Latifah, Bobcat Goldthwait, Pauly Shore, Thomas Calabro, Corky & The Juice Pigs, Mark Curry, Ike Turner, Adam Arkin, Bob Marley, Ryan Stiles, David Faustino, L.L. Cool J

Running Time: 943 Minutes (22 episodes) / Rating: TV-14

1.33:1 Fullscreen (Original Broadcast Ratio), Dolby Stereo 2.0 (English)
Subtitles: None; Not Closed Captioned / Season 2 Airdates: September 21, 1996 - May 17, 1997
Suggested Retail Price: $29.93 / DVD Release Date: March 26, 2013
Four single-sided, dual-layered discs (DVD-9s) / Clear Keepcase

Buy MADtv: The Complete Second Season DVD from Amazon.com

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Season Overview and Discs 1 and 2

Even in 1997, Rodney Dangerfield still complained about not getting any respect. Bryan Callen channels Matthew McConaughey in the trailer for John Grisham's "The Mailbox." Nissan's memorable stop-motion toy commercial is parodied with a reckless drunk toy driver.

Disc 3

12. Rodney Dangerfield (42:52) (Originally aired February 1, 1997)
News X reports on race, getting Marsh into trouble for a politically incorrect remark. Dangerfield gives a monologue about his wife and his lack of respect. An R & B singer has questionable ideas for a charity benefit album.
The sitcom "Suddenly Millennium" mixes "Suddenly Susan" and "Millennium." Dangerfield shows a clip from Meet Wally Sparks on "Cabana Chat." At a car rental counter, a pompous customer insists a couch made a fart-like noise. A dieting woman behaves erratically at a restaurant. A tough guy tries to rope his newly-met college roommate into a fight.

13. Queen Latifah (42:53) (Originally aired February 8, 1997)
The Man makes an announcement. Debra Wilson is excited and starstruck to have Latifah on the show. A colonial era lawyer advertises his services. A woman giving birth to a freakishly long leg puts the doctors on edge. A man tries to pick up a lesbian. Alanis Morissette sings about her grades to an elementary school. In one of the season's highlights, a trailer advertises The Mailbox, a new John Grisham legal thriller that tells of the aftermath of a Time to Kill-esque southern mailbox smashing. A precocious, progressive young girl is difficult in a fancy restaurant. A couple weighs a bad new job with their porno addiction. A man who breaks into empty homes hosts the cooking show "Grubbin' with Charlie." A man can't take no for an answer.

14. Tommy Davidson (42:52) (Originally aired February 15, 1997)
An innocent man spends 19 years in prison on hidden camera show "You've Been Had!" In honor of Black History Month, Tommy Davidson sings country. There is recording studio drama for a group of children's musicians. A bachelorette party breeds passive aggression from the bride's unmarried older sister. The husband of a woman who just gave birth wants to get intimate again ASAP. A stop motion short parodies Nissan's famous "You Really Got Me" commercial with a reckless drunk toy driver. A general gives rambling advice to his soldiers in a parody of Patton's famous film-opening monologue. A waiter keeps on grating cheese per a diner's wishes. Women gossip about a co-worker while, unbeknownst to them, she uses the bathroom stall. Tom Kenny delivers a monologue about his two broken arms and the importance of wiping your spouse's butt in a healthy marriage. An expert preaches on self-confidence.

Two fast food workers (Debra Wilson and Bobcat Goldthwait) learn that they are to fight to the death for Employee of the Month honors. An unsightly Bill Clinton (Bryan Callen) has his speech translated by an Ebonics interpreter. Comedic Canadian music group Corky and the Juice Pigs sing "Eskimo."

15. Bobcat Goldthwait (42:53) (Originally aired March 8, 1997)
Two "Lowered Expectations" bits are in this episode. Goldthwait claims he's hosting as community service for setting a fire on The Tonight Show. A couple airs their dirty laundry while leading square dancing. Two fast food workers fight to the death for Employee of the Month. Goldthwait gives a series of Natural Selection tips to weed out the stupid people. Two women wake up from a night together with different views on their sexual orientations. An employee's reliance on protocol proves unhelpful to people who have lost things. A nervous woman who doesn't know much hosts the educational show "Who'd A Thunk It?" Goldthwait performs a monologue while getting his genitals pierced. A young boy is told he is dying by a crazy woman. A commercial advertises an unknown product with gibberish technical jargon. A religious cult leader delivers an "urgent message" from prison.

16. Pauly Shore (42:52) (Originally aired March 15, 1997)
Bill Clinton delivers a State of the Union speech with help from an Ebonics interpreter. Shore renames the show "HAPPYtv." Inner monologues are at odds between two strangers at a coffee shop. A trailer advertises a star-studded new beach comedy Beach Blanket Ebola starring Annette and Tommy parodies and others. Shore has a meeting of the minds with Pool Boy on "Cabana Chat." NBC advertises "Test Pattern", a new show to fill in the half-hour between "Seinfeld" and "ER." A fast food trainee has trouble. A man annoys his workmates with the questions he asks. A drunk man interviews a job applicant. Two "Lowered Expectations" clips. In a monologue, Shore jokes about medical marijuana, asks the audience for reassurance that Bio-Dome wasn't that bad, and raps about hating the Baldwins.

17. Thomas Calabro (42:52) (Originally aired April 5, 1997)
A list of things that scare white people is buried within a Black History Month report. Calabro, the season's most obscure host, previews what is to come on his Fox show, "Melrose Place." Chacha the ape is uncooperative for a scientist's presentation. A discount funeral home saves money in a bizarre way. A twisted stop-motion short tells of how Curious George and the Man in the Yellow Hat first met. Support group Stoopid Anonymous meets. A bossy wife makes for an awkward dinner with a fellow couple. Canadian comedy music group Corky and the Juice Pigs sing "Eskimo." A bombastic preacher's trial is televised. A marriage counselor sets couples straight. Cops struggle to catch a charming serial killer.

The real Ike Turner surprises Orlando Jones as he portrays him as a pizza man. O.J. Simpson continues to look for his ex-wife's murderer. "The Adventures of Sinbad" stars comedian Sinbad (Phil LaMarr) in a fantastic adventure.

Disc 4

18. Mark Curry (42:53) (Originally aired April 12, 1997)
After an ad for all-purpose dining utensil Snoorfpk, the "Hangin' with Mr. Cooper" star shows off his rapping skills. A recovering drug addict tries to sell anything he can door to door. Ike Turner delivers a pizza to Tina in a sketch the real Ike Turner crashes. Fran Drescher hosts the Fox special report "When Babies Attack."

Pablo Francisco does stand-up comedy about soap operas, apparently joining the cast in the process. Nelson Mandela tries out comedy on a celebrity psychic show co-hosted by the real Ike Turner. Larry Blevins' rare imported roses, artisan thimbles, and unknown creations are advertised. Frequent daytime talk show guests discuss their upcoming appearances after a funeral. A dumped man reinvents himself for another chance with a woman.

19. Adam Arkin (42:54) (Originally aired April 26, 1997)
Isaac Mizrahi discusses dressing the show and its guest, "Chicago Hope" star Arkin (son of actor Alan). Mary and Rhoda come out as lesbian in a long-lost "Mary Tyler Moore Show" episode. The manager of Argentine wrestler El Assowipo talks to him about his name. On The Kenny Kingston Show, O.J. Simpson gives us an update on his search for his ex-wife's killers. Doctors interrogate a man, who plays dumb about the kidney stones they find inside him. The UBS guy unintentionally annoys a beggar. The young man with the embarrassing parents moves in to his college dorm. A "Lowered Expectations" video. Comedian Bob Marley jokes about family and Los Angeles.

20. Ryan Stiles (42:52) (Originally aired May 3, 1997)
On the date from hell, a man uses a movie trailer voice and does impressions. Phil LaMarr surprises Stiles with his ability to improvise. Michael Jackson threatens Earth with armed children on Oprah. Revelations surprise a newly-engaged couple. "The Adventures of Sinbad" places the comedian in a period action-adventure series. Stiles sings about his big toes. Toby Robbins introduces a slave empowerment plan. A foreign kitchen staff makes deadly food. A man sensitive to noise moves into a new apartment. A woman charts out her life compared to her dreams for her kids.

A first grade teacher (Mary Scheer) talks to her date (David Faustino) like he's one of her young students. "Clops" offers a stop-motion parody of "COPS" with toys.

21. David Faustino (42:52) (Originally aired May 10, 1997)
Awkward wedding vows. Faustino jokes about the recent mass suicides of cult Heaven's Gate. A first grade teacher uses her classroom manner on a date. A man isn't thrilled by his nightly surprise party welcoming him home. A trailer promotes Jane Austen's Tea 'n' A starring Larry Flynt. An excitable girl competes in the Little Miss Adorable pageant. Helpful Hand offers life insurance for young rappers. A son tries his hardest to sell meat in the market his mother owns. A white boss questions the rampant absenteeism of his black employees, who are full of racial excuses. An aspiring singer uses the funeral of a record executive's wife to show off her voice.

22. LL Cool J (42:52) (Originally aired May 17, 1997)
Gangsta Shop Quartet blends barbershop quartets with gangsta rap. Unconvincing En Vogue impersonators try to accept the group's Chubby Award. A male stripper's self-esteem drops and soars during a performance for office women. A stop-motion "COPS" parody. An insecure Latina woman starts fights at a dance club. A couple discusses their marriage while lottery numbers are drawn. A businesswoman is full of excuses. A blind date in a smoky restaurant proves to be something different. At a small town meeting, citizens come up with ideas to attract gay people.

The famous closing shot of "The Godfather" is parodied in the stop-motion Christmas short "The Reinfather." With no language options, subtitles, or extras, the Season 2 DVD's menus keep things simple, listing episode airdates and hosts.

VIDEO and AUDIO

DVD presents "MADtv" in its original 1.33:1 broadcast ratio. Picture quality is fine and on the order of what it was in original broadcast. It is subjected to limitations of video, but not troubled beyond that. The same applies for the unremarkable Dolby 2.0 stereo soundtrack,
which continues to censor the infrequent use of profanity. Sadly, Shout! supplies neither closed captions nor subtitles, unsurprising for them, but unfortunate all the same.

BONUS FEATURES, MENUS, PACKAGING and DESIGN

Shout! Factory must be hoping that "MADtv" fans are excited enough to rediscover these episodes long off the air not to mind that they are not joined by any bonus features, in contrast to the many supplements Warner had included on Season One.

Each disc's lone 16:9 menu loops part of the oh-so-'90s theme song (which is credited to the late Heavy D) while playing animation from the opening titles.

Shout!'s penchant for clear keepcases enables the reverse side of the artwork to list the hosts and airdates for each disc's episodes. There are no inserts or slipcover, but the artwork does match the design of Warner's First Season set.

The Vancome Lady (Nicole Sullivan) obnoxiously interviews a quarterback (David Herman) after a loss in the "Superbowl Special." The hyperactive UBS delivery man (Phil LaMarr) annoys a beggar (David Herman).

CLOSING THOUGHTS

Your ability to tolerate these 16-year-old episodes of "MADtv" hedges largely on how aware and fond of '90s culture you were and remain. It is as much of an exercise in nostalgia as in comedy and that mindset makes it extremely easy to watch even if diversion is sporadic. Something is not right that this show can come to DVD at a reasonable price, while the '90s heyday of "Saturday Night Live" remains unavailable save for compilations. Nonetheless, if fans want to see more of this show, then they shouldn't hesitate to pick up Shout!'s barebones yet serviceable, long-awaited Second Season DVD.

Buy MADtv: The Complete Second Season on DVD at Amazon.com

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Key & Peele: Season 1 The Muppet Show: Season Two The Goode Family: The Complete Series

<< Return to Page 1
Season Overview and Discs 1 and 2

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Reviewed March 8, 2013.



Text copyright 2013 DVDizzy.com. Images copyright 1996-97 Quincy Jones David Salzman Entertainment, Bahr Small Productions, Warner Bros. Television, and 2013 Shout! Factory.
Unauthorized reproduction prohibited.