ALF - SEASON TWO
Alf - Season Two
Starring: Max Wright
Encoding: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only)
Format: Color, Closed-captioned
Number of discs: 4
Season Two of Alf,
the popular 1980s sitcom about an alien who moves in with an average
American family after his home planet is destroyed, comes to DVD
courtesy of Lion's Gate Home Entertainment.
Did I say average
American family? Sorry, I meant average sitcom family because the
Tanners (the family in question) doesn't bear any resemblance whatsoever
to any real families one might know. In fact the world of
The Simpsons seems like hyper-realism
compared to the Family Ties-like one of the Tanners. The most
fantastical element in their reality isn't the presence of an alien that
resembles an orange talking bath rug . . . so contrived are the typical,
moralising plots in Alf!
THE DISCS: All twenty-five episodes of 22 minutes each fit on
four single-sided discs. This is a welcome change from all the TV shows
on double-sided discs I recently reviewed. On the other hand, the
packaging is somewhat awkward and one disc just wouldn't stay affixed to
its spindle and kept on getting loose. Overall the packaging is
unimpressive: my wife mistook it for an old VHS tape. Sound and image is
fine though and you also get two bonus animated Alf episodes as a bonus.
Incidentally, these are the shorter
syndicated episodes instead of the original ones - something which will
no doubt irk long-time fans.
Anyway, despite the unlikely sitcom world inhabited by the show's
characters, it is frankly difficult to see why this show was so hugely
popular back in the 1980s. How a bland and unfunny show like this
managed to engrain itself into the popular culture of the time is as big
a mystery as to why the Brits re-elected Margaret Thatcher all the time
and why the yanks made someone like Ronald Reagan president in the first
place. Also, truth be told the "lovable" Alf himself is on the mildly
annoying side too.
Your kids might disagree with my prognosis, and Alf is pretty harmless
family viewing - so get it for them if you must. But if you're a
nostalgic twentysomethinger you'd probably be just as disappointed in
Alf as you were with the recent He-Man and the
Masters of the Universe DVD box set . . .