Featurette - Always in Fashion: A Conversation with Steven Levitan and the Cast of Just Shoot Me!
Photo gallery - The Blush Covers
Just Shoot Me - Seasons 1 & 2
Sony Pictures Home Entertainment/Sony Pictures Home Entertainment .
R4 . COLOR . 689 mins .
PG . NTSC
Just Shoot Me! is a sitcom, and as a general rule I avoid situation comedies at all costs. Don't get me wrong, I'm a gal who loves television. If you've read any of my DVD reviews you will know that there are plenty of television shows I profess to love. But in my more than 26 years of watching the tube, there have only been two sitcoms I have watched with any degree of devotion. The Golden Girls (come on, you have to love the girls!) and Just Shoot Me!
The Blushing gang
It may not have garnered as much attention as Frasier, or been as popular as Friends, but Just Shoot Me! tops both those sitcoms in almost every department. Superb acting, clever writing and a unique premise, add up to one of the best sitcoms in recent memory.
Just Shoot Me! begins with idealist Maya Gallo (Laura San Giacomo) being fired from her network news job for making the female anchor cry on air. Maya reluctantly goes to her father, media mogul Jack Gallo (George Segal), for a job at his magazine. Maya and Jack have a problematic relationship, compounded by Jack's marriage to one of Maya’s high school classmates. Out of desperation, Maya agrees to become articles editor at Blush magazine on the condition she will be able to write more substantial features than the typical sex surveys and plastic surgery stories.
Maya’s new job introduces her to some interesting co-workers. Jack’s executive assistant, Dennis Finch (David Spade) is a supermodel obsessed, porcelain cat collecting suck up, who enjoys nothing more than insulting his colleagues. One of his favourite targets is model turned fashion editor Nina Van Horn (Wendie Malick), who seems content living the exact same lifestyle she enjoyed in the ‘70s. Fashion photographer and notorious ‘modeliser’ Elliot DiMauro (Enrico Colantoni), rounds out the dysfunctional Blush staff.
This release of Just Shoot Me! combines the short first season and the full second season for a grand total of 31 episodes. Both seasons are filled with endlessly quotable quips and charming performances from the entire cast. The first season episode Lemon Wacky Hello is one of the best in the entire series, with Maya, Elliot and Nina attempting to finish the magazine layout while under the influence of hallucinogenic drugs. Another highlight is My Dinner with Woody, which pays homage to the filmmaking style of Woody Allen. The man himself makes a 'voice' cameo at the end of the episode. These kind of original, inventive episodes may be highlights, but overall, all the episodes in these first two seasons are brilliantly written and performed. There are laughs a plenty to be found in each and every half hour show.
The Devil and Maya Gallo
Lemon Wacky Hello
In Your Dreams
King Lear Jet
My Dinner with Woody
His Royal Finchness, the munchkin King
Jesus, It’s Christmas
Elliot The Geek
Pass The Salt
In The Company of Maya
College of Collagen
Nina in the Cantina
Jack’s Old Partner
Eve of Destruction
War and Sleaze
"I'd like to thank the Academy."
All 31 episodes of Just Shoot Me! are presented in 4:3 Fullscreen format and look fantastic. This is an NTSC video transfer, but this doesn’t cause major problems with the image, unless of course your TV doesn't support NTSC. The only major issue with the visual transfer is minimal grain in some episodes. Otherwise, this is an impressive transfer with vibrant colours, solid blacks and detailed shadows. Some episodes appear duller than others, with colours slightly muted and with more noticeable grain, but overall, colours are wonderful and details clear.
The Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround audio mix is quite dynamic and well above average for a surround television transfer. Front and centre channel sound is solid and the subtle use of the rear channels for natural office atmosphere is excellent. This is a top end television audio package that is not damaged by any sync issues or drop out problems.
This release only offers a small selection of extras, but the case here is quality over quantity.
A wonderful featurette, Always in Fashion, features creator Steve Levitan and every member of the cast reminiscing over the show. It’s rare that a retrospective featurette includes all the original cast members, but it's clear from the way everyone speaks that this cast are extremely fond of each other and genuinely cherish the experience they had making Just Shoot Me!.
Audio Commentaries appear on four episodes.
Back Issues (pilot)
Lemon Wacky Hello
King Lear Jet
My Dinner with Woody
All four commentaries are provided by the same group of speakers. Creator/executive producer Steve Levitan, writer/co-executive producer Eileen Conn, writer/producer Danny Zuker, co-executive producer Andy Gordon and producer Marsh McCall. While the prospect of producer commentaries isn’t appealing in print, this group are marvellous together. The commentaries are enjoyable, fun and provide many interesting titbits about each episode.
A photo gallery, The Blush Covers, features the various covers of the magazine used in each show with double-entendre headlines that link to plot developments in each episode.
Finally, there are two trailers for 13 Going on 30 and Dawson’s Creek.
It's taken quite a while for Just Shoot Me! to be released on DVD and thankfully this is a substantial release containing both the short first season and the full second season. The only possible complaint is with the NTSC video format, but this should not be a problem for the majority of viewers. With 31 episodes, quality extras and excellent audio and video transfers, this is a MUST SEE TV DVD.