Laverne & Shirley: The Second Season – DVD Review


Available at Amazon.com

Studio: CBS DVD/Paramount
Release Date: April 17, 2007
Number of Discs: 4
Number of Episodes: 23
Running Time: 568 Minutes
MSRP: $38.99

Creator:

Garry Marshall
Lowell Ganz
Mark Rothman

Cast:

Penny Marshall. Laverne DeFazio
Cindy Williams. Shirley “Shirl” Feeney-Meaney
Michael McKean. Leonard ‘Lenny’
David L. Lander. Andrew ‘Squiggy’ Squiggmann
Eddie Mekka. Carmine “The Big Ragoo” Ragusa
Phil Foster. Frank DeFazio
Betty Garrett. Edna Babish-DeFazio
Henry Winkler. Fonzie
Ron Howard. Richie Cunningham

The show:

Schlemiel: an inept clumsy person. Schlemazl: an unlucky person. Hasenpfeffer: a German rabbit stew. What do these things have to do with one of TV’s classic situation comedies Laverne And Shirley? Frankly I’m not sure, but this spin-off of Happy Days is possibly better than its predecessor. In this, the second season of this show (1976-1977), it really comes into its own.

Penny Marshall and Cindy Williams are hilarious together and have great chemistry. Not only do they deliver witty dialog but thei physical comedy is beyond compare. Add to that two of the wackiest neighbors ever, Lenny (the always hilarious Michael McKean) and Squiggy (the underrated David Lander), and you know big laughs can always be expected.

In classic spin-off fashion there are a couple episodes where characters from Happy Days cross over including good ol’ Richie Cunningham (Ron Howard) and everyone’s favorite, The Fonz (Henry Winkler)! Perhaps it’s a little formulaic and dated but if you’re at all a fan of classic TV then you know that’s part of its charm. It’s like your favorite old pair of pajamas, you know exactly what you’re going to get when you put them on but it always makes you happy.

Fun Fact!: In this season Lenny and Squiggy perform in a band they call Lenny and The Squigtones. In 1979 they released a self titled LP featuring one Nigel Tufnel (Christopher Guest) who went on to be a leading member of Spinal Tap!


Laverne & Shirley: Comedic Duo!

Episodes:

Disc One:

“Drive! She Said”

Shirley is excited when she gets the opportunity to buy a car, but Laverne, who is afraid of cars, is a little less that enthusiastic.

“Angels Of Mercy”

Laverne decides to volunteer at a hospital to meet men.

“Bachelor Mothers”

Fonzie tricks the girls into babysitting a friend’s baby so they can go to a party.

“Excuse Me, May I Cut In?”

When their TV blows out the girls convince Richie and Potsie to take them to a dance contest to win a new one.

“Bridal Shower”

The girls become depressed when they go to a friend’s bridal shower and realize they are the only ones amongst their old gang that are unmarried.

“Look Before You Leap”

Laverne has a pregnancy scare when she can’t remember what happened at a work party after drinking too much.

Disc Two:

“Dear Future Model”

In another attempt to meet men the girls enroll in modeling school.

“Good Time Girls”

After blowing of a date the girls learn the disgruntled man wrote their phone number in a men’s bathroom.

“Two of Our Weirdos are Missing”

The girls are sad to learn that Lenny and Squiggy have run off to join the circus.

“Oh Hear the Angels’ Voices”

The Great Ragoo convinces the gang to perform a Christmas Pageant at a mental ward.

“Guilty Until Proven Not Innocent”

After a handkerchief falls into Laverne’s purse she is accused of shoplifting, and it’s up to Shirley to clear her name.

“Birthday Show”

In this cliché flashback episode the gang remembers their best times with the girls when they are late to their surprise birthday party.

Disc Three:

“Playing Hooky”

When the girls call in sick to work they meet two cute guys who turn out to be policemen.

“Guinea Pigs”

The girls sign up to be subjects in scientific experiments to get extra money.

“Call Me A Taxi”

In another attempt to get money the girls get jobs as dime-a-dance girls.

“Steppin’ Out”

As the girls prepare for what could be their dream dates everything that could go wrong does.

“Buddy, Can You Spare A Father?”

Shirley’s dad comes to visit much to Laverne’s chagrin.

“Honeymoon Hotel”

Shirley wins a honeymoon at a fancy hotel, and the girls need to figure out a way to cash in.

Disc Four:

“Hi, Neighbor Book II”

The girls decide to be helpful when Lenny and Squiggy’s dates stand them up.

“Frank’s Fling”

The girls get upset when Laverne’s dad starts dating a woman who only wants him for his money.

“Haunted House”

The girls go to an estate sale to buy a new couch and end up getting locked in a haunted house over night.

“Lonely At The Middle”

Shirley gets promoted at work and it leads to animosity between her and Laverne.

“Citizen Krane”

A wealthy man, Charles Pfister Krane, decides to make the girls into singing sensations.

The DVD:

VIDEO: How does it look?
(Presented with a 1.33:1 full screen aspect ratio)

For a show 30 years old these episodes look fantastic. It’s pretty amazing how well these old shows have been preserved.

AUDIO: How does it sound?
(Dolby Stereo)

The sound is fine. Nothing exceptional. Surprisingly this is one show where the laughing isn’t annoying. Perhaps that is because they are real laughs from real people and not a laugh track.

Extras:

Sadly, there are none. With a cast this funny some commentaries or retrospectives would have been realize now. Oh, well.

The DVD Lounge’s Ratings for Lavenre & Shirley: Season 2
CATEGORY
RATING
(OUT OF 10)
THE SHOW

8.5
THE VIDEO

8
THE AUDIO

7
THE EXTRAS

0
REPLAY VALUE

7.5
OVERALL
7.5
(NOT AN AVERAGE)

The Inside Pulse
This is a classic, memorable comedy and a reminder of what situation comedy is all about. A definite owner for fans and a must rent for anyone who’s never seen it. Sadly, the lack of any special features really brings the over all score down.