8 Simple Rules - Season 1 [DVD]
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Legendary US sitcom stars John Ritter and Katey Sagal team up in 8 Simple Rules, the hit family comedy that is laugh-out-loud funny. A little rusty in the parenting department, Paul (Ritter) is forced to meet fatherhood head-on when his wife Cate returns to work. Two teenage daughters and a wisecracking son make Paul's new situation daunting but never dull. Cybill Shepherd, Jason Priestley and Terry Bradshaw are just some of the guest stars joining the fun in Season 1. Experience all 28 episodes plus exclusive bonus features--including a hilarious bonus reel--in this sensational 3-disc set.
After gaining fame as ladies man Jack Tripper on the 1970s sitcom Three's Company, John Ritter steals the show as a father of three--including two nubile teenage girls--on 8 Simple Rules... for Dating My Teenage Daughter. The first season introduces viewers to Paul (Ritter) and Cate Hennessy (Katey Sagal) and their precocious children Bridget (Kaley Cuoco), Kerry (Amy Davidson), and Rory (Martin Spanjers). When former stay-at-home mom Cate returns to the work force as a nurse, it's up to Paul to write his newspaper column at home and mind the kids. The first season deals with that uneasy transition. It's actually refreshing to see a family depicted where the parents don't always like the kids. Paul often jokes with Cate that he's mad she ever suggested they start a family. He also notes, "What's it called if you're damned if you do and damned if you don't? Oh yes, fatherhood".
As for the children, we've seen similar stereotypical characters on other sitcoms. Bridget is the 16-year-old blonde bombshell. Kerry is her awkward, brunette younger sister and Rory is their kid brother who has the creepy habit of hiding in their closets. Paul's relationship with Rory is even keeled. But it's his daughters that he is trying to win over. They love him, but they're also embarrassed and befuddled by him. Just when he thinks he's bonding with them, the girls will sarcastically point out his faults--such as his being at least 100 years old. As he succinctly points out to his wife, "They live in my house, but they don't even like me. They're not kids. They're cats!" Though the show is big on comic moments, it also is generous in sharing poignant memories. When Paul looks at his girls, he doesn't see young women that even his friends think of as hotties. Rather, he still views them as innocent toddlers who looked up to and adored him. Sagal, who was so over-the-top in both looks and mannerisms when she played the matriarch on Married with Children, is a wonderful foil for Ritter. Beautiful, smart, and funny, she's a tough act for him to follow when it comes to being a stay-at-home dad. --Jae-Ha Kim
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So what makes this sitcom better than any number of other family-based shows? I think it's the performances that all the actors bring to their characters and the razor-sharp scripts. There are 28 episodes in this first season and there's not a dud among them. Although John Ritter has the lead role, the rest of the cast gets a good share of the laughs and most of the stories revolve around Bridget and Kerry's lives. The strength of the guest stars helps too, notably Larry Miller as Paul's unscrupulous colleague, Tommy who is also the father of Bridget's none too bright boyfriend, Kyle (Billy Aaron Brown), and Patrick Warburton as Paul's boss, Nick Sharpe whose own life bears an uncanny resemblance to Paul's.
There are far too many highlights to list here in their entirety, but some of my favourite moments are: the `Three's Company' spoof in episode 16 (`Three's Company' was an Americanised version of the 1970s sitcom `Man About the House' in which John Ritter played the Richard O'Sullivan role); the moment when Bridget and her nemesis, Jenna Sharpe (Nikki Danielle Moore) square up to each other gunfighter-style, "Whatever," says Jenna viciously to which Bridget responds with a sharp intake of breath as though this was the worst insult possible; the studio audience's reaction when they see Cate just about to enter the girls' bedroom as Rory is rescuing his stash of girlie magazines that his sisters have confiscated; the hysterically awful cheerleader auditions that Kerry turns to her advantage; and Rory's reaction to seeing the new-look Aunt Maggie (Cybill Shepherd) in the season's final episode.
It would have been nice to have some cast interviews or commentaries included in this set, but the only bonus material in the package is a blooper reel. These are probably more amusing for the actors involved and the studio audience. There are only so many times you can watch actors fluffing their lines before it becomes boring. But the 28 episodes contained in this collection are wonderfully funny and it's a pleasure to own them on DVD. Don't be surprised if you unintentionally while away a whole evening watching them.
I hope the later series, including those featuring James Garner and David Spade, also get released in Region 2 format. They are equally as funny, and those immediately after John Ritter's sad death in 2003 are genuinely moving as well.
Paul writes a "slice of life" column in a sports paper, and when wife Cate returns to work as a nurse after being a stay-at-home-mum, it's fallen to Paul to be a stay-at-home-dad.
Trouble is, Paul is overprotective and worries that his daughters are dating boys with their own agendas. He constantly warns any potential suiters to watch their step. Or as he puts it, "You have hormones and I have a temper. If your hormones get in the ring with my temper, my temper will win." Or, "If you make my daughters cry, I'll make you cry." The girls hate it when he scares their boyfriends while they're getting ready upstairs. They call him "Psycho-Dad". But when Paul tries to be cool and "hip", the girls remind him that no one's said hip in years - and anyway, it's a body-part!
And when Paul takes the kids to school, he isn't even allowed to say "bye" or speak to them at all. In fact, it's preferable that he parks around the corner. After all, he is a hundred, right?
Bridget is obsessed with her looks. She's the most popular girl in school - and knows it. She's never a read book in her life, whereas Kerry is the smart one who gets all the "A"s. Rory constantly snitches on his sisters - and loves doing so, getting a sort of twisted pleasure out of it!
Paul struggles between protectiveness and embarrassment, quite often finding himself in a no win situation. "What is it when you're damned if you do and you're damned if you don't? Oh yes: Fatherhood."
Fortunatly for the kids, mum Cate is more laid back. It's Paul who reads the book on parenting!
This show is my all-time favourite American sitcom. It is a laugh a minute - even three laughs a minute! Why not check it out and enjoy every witty oneliner, side-splitting situation, fantastical farce, riotous reaction and many hilarious hours in this amazing sitcom tour-de-force which everyone can relate to!
This DVD includes all 28 uproarious episodes. They are :
1. Pilot (Pilot)
2. Wall Of Shame
3. Bridget's First Job
7. Trick Or Treehouse
8. By The Book
9. Two Boys For Every Girl
10. Give It Up
11. Paul Meets His Match
12. All I Want for Christmas
13. Rory's Got a girlfriend
14. Carrer Choices
15. Kerry's Big Adventure
16. Come and Knock on Our Door (This includes a spoof of Three's Company)
17. Drummer Boy Part(1)
18. Drummer Boy Part(2)
19. Cool Parent
20. Every Picture Tells a Story
21. Kerry's Video
22. Good Moms Gone Wild
23. Career Women
24. Queen Bees and King Bees
25. Bake Sale
26. The Doyle Wedding (This guests John Ratzenberger - Cliff in Cheers)
27. Sort of an Officer and a Gentleman part(1)
28. Sort of an Officer and a Gentleman part(2)
Special Features include bloopers.
And in case you're wondering, the 8 Simple Rules for Dating my Teenage Daughter are:
1. Use your hands on my daughter and you'll lose them after.
2. You make her cry, I make you cry.
3. Safe sex is a myth. Anything you try will be hazardous to your health.
4. Bring her home late, there's no next date.
5. Only delivery men honk. Dates ring the doorbell. Once.
6. No complaining while you're waiting for her. If you're bored, change my
7. If your pants hang off your hips, I'll gladly secure them with my
8. Dates must be in crowded public places. You want romance? Read a book.
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