Today, Thrilling Days of Yesteryear is proud to commemorate the fortieth anniversary of the first televised installment of Monty Python’s Flying Circus, and I just so happen to have an essay on this for the occasion—though you’ll have to click here to read it at Edward Copeland on Film. (As Ed remarked on Facebook: “The parrot may be dead…but the show lives on.”)
There are also a few noteworthy television-on-DVD announcements to dish out, courtesy of TVShowsOnDVD.com. The website has announced that November 2nd will see the debut of The Spike Jones Show: The Best of, a 3-disc set that will contain episodes from the show’s stint on NBC in 1954 (I’m not 100% on this, but I think these are the same shows that the Comedy Channel used to show before they became Comedy Central) as well as two never-before-aired pilots. The set will be released by Infinity Entertainment and is being produced and edited under the supervision of Spike Jones, Jr.
There’s been a change in the scheduling for The Donna Reed Show: Season 3; it was originally due to hit stores on November 3rd but has now been pushed up to December 1st—the official reason being that Virgil Entertainment needs a little more time to handle the bonus material on the set. A telecast from This is Your Life and a featurette entitled “Look at the Donna Reed Foundation” have been pulled from Season 3’s bonus material and replaced with a rare promo entitled “Happy Holiday Wishes From the Stone Family,” which originally aired during one of the sitcom’s holiday seasons. Also included on this set will be a recently discovered (among Reed’s effects) cachet of congratulatory telegrams sent to Donna on the occasion of the release of It's a Wonderful Life (1946)—one of them originating from Joan “No more wire hangers” Crawford herself. (These telegrams will be presented in a “photo gallery” format.) The sales for the Reed box sets must be encouraging, because this same article mentions that Season 4 is already in the works for a release around Mother's Day in 2010.
Virgil Entertainment is also sad to report that their Big John, Little John release (previously discussed here) has been temporarily scrapped and is scheduled to reappear sometime after the first of next year. No further comment is needed, I think.