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85 of 86 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Trailblazing series, excellent box-set at an irresistible price
"Homicide: Life on the Street" (Jan, 1993 - May, 1999)

As far as I'm concerned, the aforementioned "Law and Order" crossover episodes (see below) not having been included doesn't bother me at all. To me, that series with its rather mundane script and dialogue is a par below "Homicide" anyway. Having said that, I concur that the omission of "H: The Movie", the...
Published on 11 May 2010 by Cottontail

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars Three Stars
not a patch on the sheild!!
Published 17 days ago by M. Frost


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85 of 86 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Trailblazing series, excellent box-set at an irresistible price, 11 May 2010
This review is from: Homicide: Life on the Street - The Complete Series [DVD] (DVD)
"Homicide: Life on the Street" (Jan, 1993 - May, 1999)

As far as I'm concerned, the aforementioned "Law and Order" crossover episodes (see below) not having been included doesn't bother me at all. To me, that series with its rather mundane script and dialogue is a par below "Homicide" anyway. Having said that, I concur that the omission of "H: The Movie", the great roundup of all the detectives and other characters that ever appeared in the seven-years-course of the series AND a worthy coda for this invaluable piece of recent TV history is indeed deplorable. So you'd better compare the prices of the US and the UK edition and decide for yourself.

In hindsight, a decade after watching the finale and having inevitably missed several (but not many) episodes, I can see the full scope of the series and its huge, if not always appreciated or even perceived by the general public, impact on contemporary TV entertainment. It's been called realistic, gritty, engrossing, moving, exciting. It's also as truthful as it gets, not only to the book, i.e. the first two seasons, but as a depiction of life in an American city and actual, non-glossy, yet intriguing police work in particular. In terms of realism, I'd rank it above "The Wire" (which IS excellent), the cast is terrific AND utterly believable, as the actors were either native Baltimoreans or rather unfamiliar faces, at least they were when the series originally aired, ideally suited to the characters they played. The idea of interspersing amateur actors, true originals from Baltimore, was indeed ingenious and adds considerably to the flavor, no phony accents and mimicking of street lingo here, it's the real McCoy, not to speak of the insightful script that makes this motley crew come to life so convincingly.

IMO, the first three seasons were the best, though the following three up to the weak and largely forgettable 7th season were excellent in their own right. I could have done without the guest appearances, as they more often than not rather detracted from the magnetic pull the regular "no-name" cast generated, yet many of them were undoubtedly great fun, so no complaint about that. Watching "Homicide" now on DVD after all these years, it's also astonishing to spot so many then unknown or unnoticed people, many of whom have become household names in the meantime. Just take the creators/writers. David Simon, creator of "The Wire", Tom Fontana ("Oz") or Paul Attanasio, who wrote the screenplay to "Donnie Brasco", one of the very best and -again - REALISTIC mob dramas ever. Anja Epstein has just recently joined the current "In Treatment"-series as executive producer, and Clark Johnson directed several episodes of "The Shield". The cross references seem almost infinite, they lay proof to the fact that "Homicide" is indeed the motherlode, the source from which the various direct or indirect offsprings have benefited.

Clark Johnson as Det. Meldrick Lewis
Richard Belzer as Sgt John Munch
Yaphet Kotto as Lt. Al Giardello
Kyle Secor as Det. Tim Bayliss
Andre Braugher as Det. Frank Pembleton
Michael Ahl as Officer Phatt
Melissa Leo as Sgt. Kay Howard
Reed Diamond as Det. Mike Kellerman
Ned Beatty as Det. Stanley 'The Big Man' Bolander (seasons 1 - 3)
Daniel Baldwin as Det. Beau Felton (seasons 1 - 3)
Jon Polito as Det. Steve Crosetti (seasons 1 - 2)

Season 1:
1. Gone for Goode - 2. A Ghost of a Chance - 3. Son of a Gun - 4. A Shot in the Dark - 5. Three Men and Adena - 6. Dog and Pony Show - 7. And the Rockets' Dead Glare - 8. Smoke Gets in Your Eyes - 9. The Night of the Dead Living
Season 2:
10. Bop Gun - 11. See No Evil - 12. Black and Blue - 13. A Many Splendored Thing
Season 3:
14. Nearer My God to Thee - 15. Fits Like a Glove - 16. Extreme Unction - 17. A Model Citizen - 18. Happy to Be Here - 19. Crosetti - 20. The Last of the Watermen - 21. All Through the House - 22. Every Mother's Son - 23. Cradle to Grave - 24. Partners - 25. The City That Bleeds - 26. Dead End - 27. End Game - 28. Law and Disorder - 29. The Old and the Dead - 30. In Search of Crimes Past - 31. Nothing Personal - 32. Colors - 33. The Gas Man
Season 4:
34. Fire: Part 1 - 35. Fire: Part 2 - 36. Autofocus - 37. Thrill of the Kill - 38. Hate Crimes - 39. A Doll's Eyes - 40. Heartbeat - 41. Sniper: Part 1 - 42. Sniper: Part 2 - 43. The Hat - 44. I've Got a Secret - 45. For God and Country - 46. Justice: Part 1 - 47. Justice: Part 2 - 48. Stakeout - 49. Requiem for Adena - 50. Full Moon - 51. Scene of the Crime - 52. Map of the Heart - 53. The Damage Done - 54. The Wedding - 55. Work Related
Season 5:
56. Hostage: Part 1 - 57. Hostage: Part 2 - 58. Prison Riot - 59. Bad Medicine - 60. M.E., Myself and I - 61. White Lies - 62. The Heart of a Saturday Night - 63. The True Test - 64. Control - 65. Blood Wedding - 66. The Documentary - 67. Betrayal - 68. Have a Conscience -
69. Diener - 70. Wu's on First? - 71. Valentine's Day - 72. Kaddish - 73. Double Blind - 74. Deception - 75. Narcissus - 76. Partners and Other Strangers - 77. Strangers and Other Partners
Season 6:
78. Blood Ties: Part 1 - 79. Blood Ties: Part 2 - 80. Blood Ties: Part 3 - 81. Birthday - 82. Baby, It's You: Part 2 - 83. Saigon Rose - 84. Subway - 85. All Is Bright - 86. Closet Cases - 87. Sins of the Father - 88. Shaggy Dog, City Goat - 89. Something Sacred: Part 1 - 90. Something Sacred: Part 2 - 91. Lies and Other Truths - 92. Pit Bull Sessions - 93. Mercy - 94. Abduction - 95. Full Court Press - 96. Strangled, Not Stirred - 97. Secrets - 98. Finnegan's Wake - 99. Fallen Heroes: Part 1 - 100. Fallen Heroes: Part 2
Season 7:
101. La Famiglia - 102. Brotherly Love - 103. Just an Old Fashioned Love Song - 104. The Twenty Percent Solution - 105. Red, Red Wine - 106. Wanted Dead or Alive: Part 1 - 107. Wanted Dead or Alive: Part 2 - 108. Kellerman, P.I.: Part 1 - 109. Kellerman, P.I.: Part 2 -
110. Shades of Gray - 111. Bones of Contention - 112. The Same Coin - 113. Homicide.com -
114. A Case of Do or Die - 115. Sideshow: Part 2 - 116. Truth Will Out - 117. Zen and the Art of Murder - 118. Self Defense - 119. Identity Crisis - 120. Lines of Fire - 121. The Why Chromosome - 122. Forgive Us Our Trespasses

NOT included (the tie-in episodes)
"Law & Order"
Charm City (Season 6, Episode 13)
Baby, It's You (Season 8, Episode 6)
Sideshow (Season 9, Episode 14)
and
Homicide: The Movie (2000) (aka "Another Homicide"), which aired 9 (!) months after the series finale.

Essential viewing for the discerning adult, definitely affordable price, good packaging of discs. The US box-set (35 discs) is even more recommendable, as it contains all the crossover episodes and the "Another Homicide" special. However, the missing material is no big deal, and fans of Lt. Giardello might want to skip the special anyway ;-).
Unconditionally recommended to anyone who liked "Hill Street Blues" or "The Wire" or is planning to watch these series on DVD.

33 DVDs (122 episodes)
Region 2
Language: English
Subtitles: English HoH
Run Time: 5694 minutes
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The one before The Wire... Classic American cop show., 8 April 2010
By 
Mr. James O'neill "madmanc" (madmanc) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Homicide: Life on the Street - The Complete Series [DVD] (DVD)
Great price for the complete collection of this series. I remember watching it back in the day on channel 4. A very groundbreaking series and great to see all of the seasons available over here.

If your a fan of The Wire you will love this as its based on the book written by David Simon (The Wire).

There are some amazing characters in it, like Bayliss, Munch and Pembleton. Some amazing lines in the series.

One thing though - its a shame as noted by the other reviewer that it doesn't have the features which the American version of the box-set does, like the movie and the cross-over episodes.

Other than this its a good buy, but might be worth checking out the America box set though first if you want any extras as this has no extras at all.
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22 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Essential TV Drama, 17 May 2010
By 
T. Edgeworth - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Homicide: Life on the Street - The Complete Series [DVD] (DVD)
Homicide: Life on the Street is a truly brilliant drama that has unfortunately maintained a low profile over the years. This is a shame, because it is undoubtedly the best show of it's kind, boasting wonderful writing, innovative directing, detailed character development, and a warm sense of humour. Here is a brief overview of each season:

Season 1&2: These two seasons are so short (9 and 4 episodes, respectively) that they are practically the same season (they were released as "Series One" here in the UK). These early episodes are probably the most realistic, as the events in them are mostly fictionalised versions of real events depicted in David Simon's excellent book "Homicide: A Year on the Killing Streets". The main storyline is Detective Tim Bayliss' investigation into the death of an 11-year old girl. Includes guest appearances from Robin Williams, Chris Rock, and a young Jake Gyllenhaal.
9.5/10

Season Three (20 episodes): Arguably the best season, filled with classic episodes and storylines. These include a serial killer who leaves white gloves on the victims, the suicide of one of the main characters, the shooting of three of the detectives and the subsequent hunt for the perpertrator. The show can be very harrowing, but here manages to balance this with humour and warmth, and makes the characters very human and easy to relate to.
10/10

Season Four (22 episodes): Still great, though not quite as good as the previous season. There is a notable reduction in the amount of story-arcs, meaning that most of the episodes are more sensational stand-alone episodes.
9/10

Season Five (22 episodes): A slight step down from the previous season, but still very good. This season delivers some very effective stories, including one concerning a member of the unit being framed for corruption, and acts as a sort of lead-in for the next season. Strong storylines and character development, particularly involving Detective Kellerman (Reed Diamond).
8/10

Season Six (22 episodes): The best season since season three, helped by a season long storyline that pits the detectives against a an enormous drug empire, and a great episode ("The Subway") about a man pinned between a subway train and the station platform.
10/10

Season Seven (22 episodes): The weakest season, though not bad by any means. It is hurt by a few misguided cast changes and the fact that the drama of the previous season simply could not be topped. The standard is still very high, however, especially in the final episode, the haunting and eerie "Forgive Us Our Trespasses".
7/10

Overall, a classic drama that simply cannot be passed over.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Not to be missed - classic crime drama, 27 Mar 2011
By 
This review is from: Homicide: Life on the Street - The Complete Series [DVD] (DVD)
I originally watched all seven series when they were shown on TV all those years ago - too long ago for me to remember when. However, I've never forgotten the quality of the drama, the storylines, the acting, the direction and the build up of characters. This alone is testament to how good the series' were. For years I tried to find David Simon's book 'Homicide - A Year on the Killing Streets' as I couldn't give up my love for the characters and their lives, loves and casework. I tried 'The Wire' but couldn't get into it. Devotees of that series surely must find their way to 'Homicide Life on the Streets' as the forerunner and in my view, better collection of police procedural stories. Ironically I've just found my way to the boxset and this review via 'The Killing', the excellent danish equivalent of crime noir. There are similarities - not least the darkness, the flawed characters and the political machinations. 'Homicide' was the first to show cop TV warts and all however and has no rival as far as I'm concerned. Dismiss it at your peril - you'll have missed hours of addictive viewing with characters you'll come to regard as friends, that will stay with you long after you put the last disc back in the box.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 10 stars.... Just Brilliant!, 19 Mar 2011
By 
V. Janssen (Haren (Ems), Niedersachsen, Germany) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Homicide: Life on the Street - The Complete Series [DVD] (DVD)
After watching a whole bunch of British detectives (and alike) like Waking the Dead, Spooks, Silent Witness, Trial and Retribution, and so on, It was kind of a 'gamble' to switch to an 'old fashioned American cop show' again but boy, dit I NOT regret it! I bought The Wire before Homicide and had the good fortune to watch Homicide first. The only thing I don't like is that I got sofar as season 5 (or 6, when you read the episode listing in other comments) and am not looking forward to the withdrawel phase after finishing this excellent and gripping series. On the other hand, I am kind of looking forward to start watching The Wire now, especially because I already watched The Corner a couple of months ago. What else can I say? BUY BUY BUY, you'll love it but watch The Corner too, it will give you an inside in what's really going on at the corners of Baltimore. The Corner (HBO Mini Series) [DVD] [2000]
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Late Comer But A True Convert, 28 Sep 2010
This review is from: Homicide: Life on the Street - The Complete Series [DVD] (DVD)
As someone who watched The Wire religiously throughout it's five season run, read David Simon's incredible book and also spent an unthinkable amount of his life watching other quality US drama such as Hill Street Blues, NYPD Blue, The Sopranos and The West Wing, you'd be forgiven for thinking that I'd have been a devout fan of Homicide: Life On The Street for years, spending all my spare time boring family & friends with tales of Munch and co. But no, besides watching a few episodes on some now defunked cable station about 10 years ago and having a fleeting knowledge of it's exsistence, Homicide has mostly passed me by. But being a little disenchanted with what modern america has produced since the demise of The Wire (exceptions being the monumental Mad Men, the guilty pleasure that is True Blood and the downright incredible Breaking Bad) I thought I'd take the plunge and purchase this boxset to see if all the plaudits are genuinly justified. Oh yes, indeed.

I'm not now going to sit here and proclaim myself some kind of Homicide dictionary, in fact I'm still only on the fourth season, but I will tell of my new found love. The first thing which hit me with this show is the fact that it does'nt ever feel the need to treat it's audience with anything approaching contempt, in fact many stories never reach a satisfactory conclusion with various murders going completly unresolved for the characters and viewers alike (no Columbo like first hand knowledge provided here). This was a style of television that now seems derigour but in the early-to-mid 90's audiences usually demanded some kind of conclusion to their murder mysteries with even groundbreaking shows such as Hill Street Blues always providing a neat finale. The gritty nature of the show also took me aback, this is a show that wasn't afraid to show the darker side of Baltimore life with some truly heinous & hideous acts being portrayed weekly as a usual way of life for the less fortunate residents.

But the one thing which really gripped me were the main characters of the peice. Frank Pembleton (Andre Braugher) is one of the most deeply layered people I've ever witnessed on screen. His quick anger and steely gaze even manage to scare me a little, I can't imagine what working with the man would be like. The much loved John Much (Richard Belzer) offers many laughs and insightful observations, personal favourite Kay Howard (Melissa Leo) always gives wonderful structure and stability and detectives Meldrick Lewis (Clark Johnson) & Tim Bayliss (Kyle Secor) and Shift Lieutenant Al Giardello (Yaphet Kotto) all providing superb ground on which to build the shows stories & set-pieces.

Overall I've been delighted with this purchase and will advise anyone whose interested in intelligent, grown up television such as The Wire or The Sopranos to give this incredible series a go, you will not regret it.

Five stars all the way.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars homicide box set, 30 Jan 2011
By 
C. Aperguis - See all my reviews
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Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Homicide: Life on the Street - The Complete Series [DVD] (DVD)
Now I am watching the whole series again for the third time and loving it as much as ever!There are such beautiful observations of gestures,exchanges and relationships. For an example of "less is more",you have only to watch the episode in which the air conditioning breaks down and this becomes the organising "event" around and within which the characters interact.Just marvel at how interesting and engaging drama can be without big action scenes!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Standard-bearer by which all other cop shows ought to be measured, 5 Nov 2012
By 
Mr. T. F. Norton (Maidstone, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Homicide: Life on the Street - The Complete Series [DVD] (DVD)
I came to Homicide after I watched The Wire. I'd have been about 9-10 years old when Homicide first aired, so fat chance for me to have seen it in the 90s in its original setting. When you give it that context, you realise just how far ahead of its time Homicide was. Good drama, complex characters, well-acted, and in the early couple of seasons (at least) it had a unique look and feel.

The earliest seasons are definitely the best: based on the book with almost the same name, they follow it faithfully. The colour seems to have been deliberately bled out of the picture: everything is rather dull and grey. This is not flash-and-bang TV. We're introduced to plenty of characters we care about (Pembleton, Bayliss, Howard, Felton, Lewis, ...) and the thread of the Adena Watson case brings in some spell-binding moments.

Subsequent seasons are essentially a spin-off from this original premise (much in the way that Dexter started life based on books and then went off in its own direction). I have to say, I think Homicide overall does a better job of staying faithful to the original material than Dexter, but I think it's a good comparison. For a long time, Homicide resisted the urge to do too many police chases, too many shoot-outs, and to jazz itself up unnecessarily. As such, seasons 3 - 6 remain very watch-able, and some of the longer-spanning plot lines are good hooks too.

I agree with everyone that season 7 is comfortably the weakest season, and there are good reasons for this. Firstly, by this point the original cast is down to a skeleton crew, and since this is a character show (with obvious character favourites), this is a downer. The second is the semi-soap opera transformation. With that said, though, it still has enough good moments to make it worth watching (including a good wrap-up to Mike Kellerman, introduced in season 4).

I will also concur with other reviewers that it is a crying shame that the movie finale was not included. I eventually managed to locate it in the wilderness of the internet, and for a 2 hour TV movie, I loved every second of it. If you can locate it, please do buy it too.

Overall, this remains my favourite cop show. The Wire's scope is much greater (and as such I don't really think it qualifies as a "cop show", really), but in many ways I love to come back to Homicide more. At any rate, if you're in need of a quality drama to sink your teeth into, this is worth every penny.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Homicide Life on the Streets, 17 May 2010
This review is from: Homicide: Life on the Street - The Complete Series [DVD] (DVD)
This is a great TV series, but as I am deaf I was very disappointed to find out that there were no sub titles on this DVD pack
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Greatest police series of them all but what a shame, 6 April 2010
By 
This review is from: Homicide: Life on the Street - The Complete Series [DVD] (DVD)
Its great to have the finest police series of them all available at such a reasonable price but such a shame that the crossover episodes and the movie were not included as in USA.
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