I’m nostalgic for my TV shows – especially the ones that I used to watch growing up. I guess every generation has this sort of nostalgia – for me, it’s TV shows, movies, and video games of the decades I grew up in, so when a company announces one of my shows is going to be released on DVD/Blu-Ray/digital download, naturally I get excited about it, because I’m going to be able to watch what I remember, most often catching episodes I may have missed while I watched them on TV.
It’s a disheartening feeling though………when you pick up the DVD season and realize that it’s been edited. Wait a minute….EDITED? WHY? What purpose could there be for this to happen? It’s a home release!
Well, the story goes that when a company takes on the task of releasing a TV show on DVD, they have to pay the original companies for permissions, royalties, etc – one of those fees are to the music companies for royalties to keep the original MUSIC incorporated into the DVD. Well, that’s only natural I suppose – even logical, one might say. The problem is…….many of these companies are NOT using logic when they release these shows! What they end up doing is one of three things:
– They will cover up the song with a lesser-known artist, which I’m assuming they won’t have to pay near as much for.
– They will delete scenes of an episode
– They will remove certain WHOLE EPISODES from the release!
Most companies will have a disclaimer (usually in very small print on the back) stating that the content has been edited. So far, one of the ONLY home video TV releases that was left completely intact was Miami Vice, and that was because they paid the fees to keep EACH AND EVERY SONG intact in the episodes. Not one was removed, covered up, or otherwise altered – also all of the Star Trek series box sets were left intact (can you imagine the row that would cause of THOSE were altered?). Just about every other TV series I’ve seen has been mutilated in some similar bizarre way – even Baywatch has the main THEME SONG replaced! Really? How CHEAP is that??
Given the choice between having pristine picture quality and butchered episodes, or having complete episodes with a few flaws in the video, I will take the latter any day of the week and twice on Sunday. This has really caused me to abstain from buying any TV series box sets because I just don’t want my memories butchered just because the DVD release company wanted to save a few bucks to further pad their profit margins.
Oh……the other ones left alone (that I know of)……….cartoons. I’m so glad they have left cartoons alone. After all……….some things are sacred.