Run's House: Complete Seasons 1 & 2 – DVD Review


Available at Amazon.com

Creators:

Jason A. Carbone
Russell Simmons
Sean “Diddy” Combs

Cast:

Joseph “Reverend Run” Simmons ………. Himself
Justine Simmons ………. Herself
Vanessa Simmons ………. Herself
Angela Simmons ………. Herself
Joseph “Jojo” Simmons Jr. ………. Himself
Daniel “Diggy” Simmons II ………. Himself
Russell “Russy” Simmons II ………. Himself

The Show

Joseph Simmons is part of hip-hop royalty. He was part of the legendary hip-hop group, Run DMC, back in the 80’s when was known as just Run. Unlike other legends of rap, Run took a different path to where he stands today. Instead of sticking to rap and living off of the past, he decided to become a real reverend and a family man. Now he has five kids and a wife, and he is better known as Reverend Run. Welcome to Run’s House.

Rev Run lives in Los Angeles with his wife, and former MC, Justine. Run had three children with his previous wife, Vanessa (age 20), Angela (age 18), and Jojo (age 16). He has two children with Justine, Diggy (age 10) and Russy (age 8). But all five children live with Run and Justine in Run’s House in New Jersey. It’s a modern day “full house”. Run is busy being a good husband, a good father inside of his home and his church, and still trying to make a comeback album. In addition, his older brother, Russell Simmons, a legendary hip-hop record producer is not too far away to help Run out when needed.

The first season of the show only had 6 episodes, but it was a success. MTV brought it back for a second season with 10 episodes this time. All 16 episodes are on this DVD set. MTV has been known for his reality TV drama. That includes such “family drama” shows like The Osbournes and The Newlyweds among others. But Run’s House is more like a modern version of The Cosby Show. Run is more hip than Cliff Huxtable, but he still has the same attitude when it comes to raising his kids. His attitude carefree and fun, but there is always a lesson to be learned at the end of every episode.

What makes this show work is Reverend Run. He is the head of the household and the “star” of the show. He is just as crazy as his kids are, but they all have good hearts. It’s fun to see Rev Run try and entertain his kids one moment, but then still discipline them the next moment. He deals with a wide range of issues as well. The younger boys have problems as they grow up, while the older girls have problems as they transition into adults. Run and Justine take care of these problems with patience and a certain amount of sweetness. Something you don’t see a lot of these days on shows like this.

Reverend Run has come a long ways from his days as just being a member of Run DMC. He’s now a reverend and a father, and he’s running a house full of children. The kids are crazy, but none of them have any real major issues like drug abuse or alcohol abuse. Run’s House is like a modern day version of The Cosby Show. It’s one of the most entertaining reality shows that has MTV has on its network right now. It’s now wonder why it’s coming back for a third season, and just like the first two seasons it will have you saying “Whose house?! Run’s House!”

Episodes:

Disc One (SEASON ONE):

Episode 1 – Angela’s Graduation
Angela is graduating from high school and Rev Run wants to reward her for being a straight-A student by throwing her a party. Angela dreams of a blowout complete with iPod goodie bags, a $10,000 glass dance floor over the pool, and guest DJ Funkmaster Flex. Her dad, on the other hand, has less expensive visions in his head.

Episode 2 – Run’s Facts of Life
Rev Run invites emerging hip-hop group, Union Turnpike, to the house to figure out how to convince his brother, Russell Simmons, to sign them to his new record label. Justine takes the girls to the spa. She asks Russell to give Diggy and Russy the talk about the “birds and the bees”.

Episode 3 – There’s No Place Like Home
Run’s blood boils upon finding out that his pool house has become filled with family junk. Meanwhile, Vanessa and Angela express their desire to move out and share an apartment in Manhattan. With eyes bigger than their budget, the girls tour some of NYC’s most glamorous real estate. A day of looking at penthouse apartments takes the girls from Trump’s ivory tower down to the ground of their reality.

Episode 4 – Do Your Best, Forget The Rest
An innocent family trip to the bowling alley turns explosive when Russy has a meltdown about losing. In an effort to teach the family about good sportmanship, Rev Run designs a competition that backfires when the Simmons realize that Russy isn’t the only one who needs to control his competitive nature.

Episode 5 – The Fruits of Labor
Justine loves to eat, and she and Run are struggling with the weighty consequences. Determined to slim down, Justine enlists the help of a personal trainer. Meanwhile, Angela is hungry for a shot to work at Baby Phat with her aunt, Kimora Lee Simmons.

Episode 6 – Simmons Family Vacation
Vanessa gets a modeling job in Colorado, and Dad decides that her shoot would be the perfect end of summer family vacation. The Simmons leave New Jersey and embark on their first outdoor adventure in Keystone, Colorado where “fly” is just a type of fishing.

Disc Two (SEASON TWO):

Episode 1 – Baby Fever
Justine makes an announcement that throws the family for a loop. Vanessa, Angela, and Jojo leave the house to visit their birth mother and Rev Run plans an evening of total kid chaos to show Justine that having another child is not the answer.

Episode 2 – A Healthy Heart
The family fish dies, so mortality is the subject of the day. Justine worries that Run hasn’t been to the doctor in 12 years, and when she insists, he reluctantly goes. Back in the family recording studio, Jojo tries to help Diggy with a new track but discovers that helping a brother out isn’t so easy.

Episode 3 – All Work and No Peace
Being a minister, partner in the family business, sneaker king, hip-hop artist, and father of five really takes its toll on Rev Run. He asks the Bishop of his church to help him balance his busy work schedule with life at home. Back at the house, Russy takes his own frustrations out on his Game Boy. His parents make him do chores to buy another one.

Episode 4 – Maximum Growth
Vanessa gets a chance to pose in Maxim Magazine but worries what her father will say. Jojo is on the road to becoming a driver but finds out that it’s not as easy as it looks on paper, and Rev Run gets a sign from above to buy a new Lamborghini.

Episode 5 – Vegas Vacation
Rev Run takes his family and new sneaker line to the MAGIC fashion trade show in Las Vegas. Behind the scenes, he enlists help from Vanessa and Angela to plan a romantic surprise for Justine. While the girls scheme, Run and Uncle Russell put Jojo to work at the Run Athletics booth, and he struggles with wanting to be treated like an adult and still wanting to be a kid.

Disc Two (SEASON TWO):

Episode 6 – Rev’s Fix It List
Some of Rev Run’s husbandly habits are wearing thin on Justine and leaving her feeling disrespected. She asks him to “fix” a few things about himself that are driving her crazy. At the same time, Diggy’s inability to be dressed and ready for church on time is topping Run’s list of pet peeves.

Episode 7 – Rev Mom
Rev Run and Justine discover that she is not only pregnant, but also very serious about her dream of becoming a jewelry designer. Run is left in charge of the house as Justine tends to business in the city. Between the kids getting braces, never-ending errands, and planning Diggy’s birthday party, Run discovers that Justine’s “day job” is harder than he thought.

Episode 8 – Downward Facing Dawg
Seeking relief from the stress of his life, Run seeks the advice of his brother, Russell. Following Russell’s example, Run decides to give yoga a try in hopes that peace will find him. As Run is reminded that he and his brother march to the beat of a different drummer, Jojo and his friend, Zach, hit the studio and take their first steps towards lyrical enlightenment.

Episode 9 – Anger Management
Russy destroys yet another Game Boy, and Run and Justine decide that he could use some professional help. On the recommendations of the doctor, Run takes Russy for karate lessons with hope of helping Russy manage his temper and achieve greater focus. At home, Angela decides she wants to start a magazine.

Episode 10 – Two Down and One to Grow
When Angela decides that she needs a dog as a fashion accessory, Rev Run puts his foot down. He says that she can get a dog when she moves out. Angela and Vanessa wonder when that day will come. After some careful reflection and gentle advice from Russy, Run and Justine realize that the time might be right after all.

The Video:

The video is given in fullscreen color with an aspect ratio of 1.33:1. Transfer is good with minimal distortion. It’s pretty much what you expect from a TV show. Not in the widescreen format, but it doesn’t have to be. The quality is as good as it should be.

The Audio:

The audio included is in English Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo sound. Again, not the best ever, but good enough for a TV show. The dialouge is crisp and clear, which is all you really need for this.

The Extras:

Run’s House: Family Confidential” Featurette
This is the only special feature, but it is LOADED with stuff. Actually, this one featurette airs after each epsiode. Basically it’s the stuff that was shown on http://RunsHouse.MTV.com. For those who didn’t catch this stuff on the website originally, it’s great. There are lots of interviews with the cast about certain parts of each episode. They dive deeper into each episode, giving their thoughts and reactions to each episode. There are also extended scenes from each episode. Along with that they throw in the occasional tour of the house, various other things. The most interesting part of this is where they throw out questions for Rev Run, relating to each episode, and he answers them. But really this is great, since the MTV website is so hard to navigate.

THE INSIDE PULSE

This is one of the “top 5” reality shows on MTV right now. It can easily compete for being the funniest show on any network. There is always a lesson to be learned, but it never seems forced like other “scripted” sitcoms. Definitely rent it to see for yourself and in the end you will probably like it enough to buy it.

The DVD Lounge’s Ratings for Run’s House: Complete Seasons 1 & 2
CATEGORY
RATING
(OUT OF 10)
THE SHOW

8
THE VIDEO

7
THE AUDIO

7
THE EXTRAS

6
REPLAY VALUE

8
OVERALL
7.5
(NOT AN AVERAGE)