Packed with bonus features and lots of great comedy, the five-disc DVD is amazing, albeit over-priced at a retail value of $89.99. Who can afford THAT? Luckily I got a discount through Wal-Mart's website.
SCTV remains as poignant and funny as it was when it first aired during the '70s on local Canadian television stations. It was in 1981 when the show moved to NBC, featuring extended 90-minute episodes. These are largely considered to be the best by the fans and members of the cast.
To say that the show relied solely on John Candy for success is unfair, although partly true. First billed, arguably the greatest actor on the show, Candy's legacy remains a stirring picture of loneliness -- he turned down roles on SNL, citing devotion to fellow SCTV pals. Incidentally a few of them, most notably Martin Short, did indeed make the move to SNL where their careers hit a rock in the road. I never enjoyed Short on SNL although he is hilarious here. Dave Thomas, who recently turned up in the horrendous BEETHOVEN'S 5TH (please, Universal, no more!) is funny as are Flaherty, Levy and Moranis. If you're not familiar with these actors, you'll probably notice their faces as you watch - Flaherty was in BACK TO THE FUTURE PART II, Levy was Jim's Dad in AMERICAN PIE, and Moranis was in HONEY I SHRUNK THE KIDS.
Overall this DVD set, which Conan O'Brien claims very well may be the funniest you will ever own, and Ben Stiller raves about in a dedication pamphlet included in the DVD, is a good place to start if you're new to the world of SCTV and have only heard of it recently - or if, like me, you've been waiting forever for them to (finally) release it on DVD!
P.S. If you're a fan of John Candy, you probably know that he didn't have a "great" film career, although under the supervision of John Hughes (his De Niro/Scorsese-esque collaborator) he made what is arguably the funniest comedy of the '80s, and my favorite of all time, PLANES, TRAINS AND AUTOMOBILES, widely considered to be one of the best comedies ever made, adored by many, featured on Roger Ebert's great movies list, boasting 100% positive reviews on RottenTomatoes.com with over 20 reviews (average rating of 8.2/10 - extraordinary!) and which was yet again featured on AFI's list of 100 great comedies. I've never met a single person who dislikes SCTV or PLANES...
Check them both out if you want a good laugh and a good time.
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