One fact that this DVD collection helps to realise beyond any doubt, is that Murrow had an unique TV-screen presence. I'm 23 years old Polish man, so naturally I hadn't anything to do with Murrow till now (I'm to write an essay on him--hance my watching of the collection). And so I wasn't biased in any way in my first contact with the material. Murrow's silky voice is not so much seductive, as it's reassuring--the listener cannot doubt that this man here really knows what he's talking about and is NOT constatntly thinking about his looks or presence.
Murrow's broadcasting and his performances are totally free of celebrity-bias that is common among our contemporary anchormen. There's wonderful line in James L. Brooks' BROADCAST NEWS (1987-and still not dated). Albert Brooks is introducing William Hurt to the subtle art of reading the news correctly. One of his tips is: 'stress one word in each sentence - it will give an impression that you know what you're talking about' (I may have misquoted this one, since I saw the film in 1998). And William Hurt's 'Tom' does exactly that: without, of course, knowing what he's really talkin' about--but making TV-viewers BELIEVE that he does know.
Murrow didn't need this kind of tricks. His calmness, his constant pauses, his left hand holding a ciggaret, and his absolutely disarming (if rare) smiles and (even rarer) bursts of laughter, make one feel that here is the man truly concerned with what he has to say.
My favourite bit in the whole collection is one short dialogue between Murrow and Grandma Moses. He asks her about death, she remarks that she's not affraid of it, and Murrow begins a sentence, which - we cen sense that perfecly - was to be something like: "Is then death something you long for?". But as he speaks he realises that it would be impolite, so he begins to stammer (he of all people!) and changes it to some other question. At this very moment he seems wonderfully vulnerable -- that one-of-a-kind man of a steady voice, which is so soothing to hear.
Micha³ Oleszczyk, Tarnowskie Góry, Poland