Married With Children : Season 1 (Complete) [DVD] 
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The dysfunctional fun continues with the complete first season of Married... with Children, the off-beat comedy that changed the face of TV family sitcoms forever, available on DVD for the first time! Nominated for 7 Golden Globe Awards between 1991 and 1994. 2-disc set with all 13 episodes.
When Married... with Children debuted on Fox TV on April 5, 1987 (followed by The Tracey Ullman Show a half-hour later), the grungy sitcom became an instant flagship for Rupert Murdoch's upstart network. The program's much-publicised working title, Not the Cosbys (a dismissive reference to the cheerful vitality of Bill Cosby's hugely popular television clan on NBC's The Cosby Show) was a dead giveaway. Married... with Children was going to be a trashier, raunchier, and far more cynical view of the American nuclear family. But it turned out the series actually fell into other caustic-domestic entertainment traditions, notably the Don Ameche and Frances Langford radio comedy series from the 1940s, The Bickersons, and Jackie Gleason's TV classic, The Honeymooners.
The jokes were savage, key relationships were marked by ennui and indifference, and the Bundy family name couldn't help but make one think of America's most notorious, real-life serial killer at the time. Yet the show had a hint of Golden Age Hollywood gloss, a retro-screwball feel that one could detect in the snappy verbal warfare between husband Al Bundy (Ed O'Neill) and wife Peggy (Katey Sagal). The characters, and the show, eschewed sentimentality, which certainly opened the floodgates to comic cynicism but also kept a door ajar for moments of genuine sweetness. A decade later, however, by the time Fox cancelled the increasingly expensive series, Married... with Children's first-season tone would be considerably different, replaced by a stronger reliance on running jokes and character stereotypes, particularly concerning Bundy children Kelly (Christina Applegate) and Bud (David Faustino).
That evolution makes watching Married...with Children's first 13 episodes, once again, quite instructive. Those programs are all on this two-disc set, including the startling pilot, in which Al and Peggy lock horns over marital politics and enlist naive new neighbors Steve (David Garrison) and Marcy (Amanda Bearse) in a battle of the sexes. There's also the classic "Whose Room Is It, Anyway," concerning the Bundys' competition to connive Steve and Marcy into building a recreation room, and "Thinnergy," a very funny piece about a diet that supposedly boosts sexual interest. --Tom Keogh
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Top Customer Reviews
Al Bundy, a man who had the chance for a life as an American Football Player, instead got his girlfriend pregnant and now lives a life as a Ladies shoe salesman while supporting a money grabbing wife, a man eater of a teenage daughter and a destructive son and to top it off, lives next door to two very annoying neighbours.
Staring Ed O'Neill & Kathy Sagal (who played the voice of Leela in Futurama) and others. Married with Children is truly a gem of American TV and lasted 11 years, buy series one and laugh for hours, guaranteed.
The show revolves around a shoe-salesman, Al Bundy, and his lovely (lovely??) family. His wife is always on his case about money and refuses to clean or cook the house. The kids are always driving him up the wall with their constant bickering and getting into trouble. The only sane one in the family appears to be sane is the dog (although he doesn't really do much). Yep, it's "Home, Sweet Hell" for Al Bundy all day, every day. You can just feel the love.
I forgot how funny the first season was. I don't think a second went by where I wasn't laughing hysterically at the Bundy hijinx that was occurring in each episode. Personally, I think Al Bundy has some of the funniest lines ever. All 13 episodes are some of the funniest TV you'll ever see. It's nice to finally see them earn a home in the DVD world.
Here are the 13 episodes that are included in this set:
"Pilot," "Thinergy," "Sixteen Years and What Do You Get," "But I Didn't Shoot the Deputy," "Have You Driven a Ford Lately," "Whose Room is it Anyway," "Al Loses his Cherry," "Peggy Sue Got Work," "Married... Without Children," "The Poker Game," "Where's the Boss," "Nightmare on Al's Street," and "Johnny B. Gone."
This 2-disk DVD set also includes extra features like bonus trailers and the "Married with Children Reunion Special" that aired on FOX awhile back. The picture and sound quality is pretty good, considering how old the show is.Read more ›
This is an exaggerated, but fundamentally truthful, vision of married life and in spite of the bickering and family battles the love is evident. The beauty of MWC is the characters reluctance to express this love directly. Instead they exchange insults. This really is comedy at its irreverent best and it ran for 13 years. Check it out.
Life isn't made much better by living next door to the Rhoades; Steve and Marcy who represent the parallel to Al's life. Happily married and successful, Steve and Marcy's self-aggrandising and moralising serve only to wind Al up even more.
What makes Married with Children still feel contemporary is the sharp, cynical, almost satirical humour that feels as fresh now as it did when the show debuted back in the 80's. This is the anti-sitcom. There are no fluffy endings; nothing works out right for the hapless Al and on no occasion do the family come together to work things out. Al and Peg (played wonderfully by Katey Sagal) spend much of the episodes bickering, playing off each other in the insult stakes.
The show served as the precursor to the likes of `The Simpsons' and `My Family'. The writers had no intention on playing it safe and that is why, some 22 years on, MWC still remains an influential comedy.
The show ran for 11 series, 2 of which are available to buy in the UK. Series 1 contains 13 episodes and having the pleasure of watching all 11 series (thanks mainly to importing foreign DVD's); I would say that the early ones are the best. Ed O'Neill himself has stated that the show became less realistic as the years progressed, relying more on slapstick and physical comedy.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
My favourite laugh of all time. Al Bundy,,, the prototype for Homor surelyPublished 19 months ago by gordon