Customer Review

75 of 77 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Monk Collection 1-8: neat, but lacking, 17 Nov 2011
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This review is from: Monk - Season 1-8 Complete [DVD] (DVD)
I am not going to comment on the program itself; I am sure there are enough reviews out there telling you either to love or hate Monk. I have always loved it, and bought the collection in order to share the joy.
I am focussing mainly on the quality of the product itself as I am not just a Monk fan but also deaf and took the risk with buying this pack.

Subtitles
S1: English SDH, French
S2: English SDH, French
S3: none
S4: none
S5: none
S6: none
S7: none
S8: none

All additional features are in English language (mostly 2.0 stereo) and without subtitles (all of them).
The Special Features are worth it if you are a fan, otherwise some features might be interesting. They include lots of interviews with the cast and producers, as well as some writers, profiles of the characters, behind the scenes, life as a writer, and video commentaries of a few episodes.

The first two seasons come with some additional languages, mostly French, sometimes German, sometimes Dutch. It is completely random and from season3 on, English mostly.

Aspect Ratio:
S1: 1:33:1 Full Frame
S2: 1:33:1 Full Frame
S3: 1:33:1 Full Frame
S4: 1:78:1 Anamorphic
S5: 1:78:1 Anamorphic
S6: 1:78:1 Anamorphic
S7: 1:78:1 Anamorphic
S8: 1:78:1 Anamorphic

Season 1&2 are PAL 2,4; the rest is PAL 2,4,5.

The sound quality overall is OK, but I have to say that especially episodes taking place outside (Mr.Monk takes Manhattan and the like) are sometimes difficult to understand, even for my partner whos hearing is fine.
If you download subtitles from the internet, you will find it is very hard to get them aligned with the DVD's, as most subtitles on the internet are optimized for TV recordings. I am talking some 40 seconds delay (even a pain with VLC player). So if you depend on subtitles, make sure to invest extra time! Googling for transcripts didn't help me much, either.

Overall 3/5 Stars.
Thumbs up for additional content, easy-to-handle DVD menus, compatibility with remote-controlled language/subtitle switch.
Thumbs down for the lack of subtitles- why not even English language subtitles are included is a mystery to me. Also, aspect ratio and language seems to split between the "old" seasons with Sharona, and the "new" seasons with Natalie. There is no apparant reason for it, and I am considering selling the set and buy each season seperately.

It is a fantastic TV Show in my opinion, however the lack of English Subtitles, which I believe to be essential (compared to additional languages) not just for deaf persons but also for those with fine hearing, as well as randomly changing additional languages and aspect ratios as well as audio (2.0 stereo, 5.1, surround) gives the impression that this product was thrown together to make money out of the "all seasons in one" appeal, with no regard to the buyer/viewer.
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Comments

Tracked by 2 customers

Sort: Oldest first | Newest first
Showing 1-9 of 9 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 23 Nov 2011 09:27:58 GMT
cooperised says:
Thank you very much for a review of the product rather than the series! It's really useful to have this kind of information, particularly (for me) on sound quality and picture format. I'm not sure whether it'll change my purchase but it's good to be able to make an informed choice.

Posted on 18 Jul 2012 22:26:36 BDT
Hi, just so you know , the original first 3 seasons were shot in 4:3 aspect ratio, I previously owned the single season boxsets so it makes no difference which ones you buy , they'll be in 4:3 format.
I hope this helps.

Posted on 29 Sep 2012 12:24:12 BDT
kork says:
[Customers don't think this post adds to the discussion. Show post anyway. Show all unhelpful posts.]

Posted on 11 Jul 2013 09:41:36 BDT
Last edited by the author on 11 Jul 2013 09:43:14 BDT
Bananaman says:
Great review and information. I always use subtitles and like you say they're essential even for those with fine hearing. Shame about this set, makes it a difficult choice. Maybe the Region 1 might be OK, I'll have to check it out.

PS Love the fact that Monk's boss was the baddie in Silence of the Lambs...it was his voice I recognised :D.

Posted on 28 Sep 2013 16:00:38 BDT
Hi
What program do you use to combine the dvds with the subtitles you download?

In reply to an earlier post on 28 Sep 2013 16:14:55 BDT
Bananaman says:
I use software called mkvmerge GUI.

In reply to an earlier post on 28 Sep 2013 17:09:23 BDT
Ursath says:
Just VLC media player. You don't actually edit any files, it just allows you to open both the video and the subtitle file, and then align them.

In reply to an earlier post on 28 Sep 2013 17:15:46 BDT
Bananaman says:
^^ Yes this. I was coming at it from the ripped DVD angle.

In reply to an earlier post on 28 Sep 2013 17:37:37 BDT
Great, thanks for that
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