Moonlighting – Seasons One and Two

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Rating: Not Rated

Starring:
Cybill Shepherd as Maddie Hayes
Bruce Willis as David Addison Jr.
Allyce Beasley as Agnes DiPesto
Curtis Armstrong as Herbert Quentin Viola
Jack Blessing as MacGillicudy / MacGillicuddy
Eva Marie Saint as Virginia ‘Ginny’ Haye
Robert Webber as Alexander Hayes
Charles Rocket as Richard Addison

Special Features:
Cast and Crew Commentaries including Glenn Gordon Caron (Creator), Cybill Shepherd and Bruce Willis

Not Just a Day Job – The Story of Moonlighting, Part 1

Inside the Blue Moon Detective Agency – The Story of Moonlighting, Part 2

The Moonlighting Phenomenon

Number of discs: 6

Other Info:
Fullscreen (1.33:1)
Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround Sound
Running Time: 20 Hours

Synopsis:
This is the first and second season of Moonlighting which aired in 1985-1986. The following is the description from the DVD cover:

“Relive the sharp and sassy repartee, as Maddie Hayes (Cybill Shepherd), the steely but gorgeous ex-model, and David Addison (Bruce Willis), the wisecracking hustler, bring their madcap capers to DVD for the first time.

Bonus Features

Not Just a Day Job, The Story of Moonlighting, Part 1 – A half-hour, in-depth look at the creative arc of Season One of the show, featuring exclusive interviews with creators, cast and crew.

Inside the Blue Moon Detective Agency, The Story of Moonlighting, Part 2 – Part 2 focuses in-depth on Season Two. Learn the amazing stories behind the creation of Episodes 6-23, including the story of how they got Orson Welles to record an introduction to the show that aired just days before his death; the appearances of other guest stars, such as Whoopi Goldberg; and the critical acclaim garnered by the show.

The Moonlighting Phenomenon – A look at how the show went from a small success to a worldwide cultural phenomenon, not just when it aired, but also in its afterlife among the fans.

Select Episode Commentaries – Moonlighting creator Glenn Gordon Caron, Cybill Shepherd, Bruce Willis and many more.”

Moonlighting – Seasons One and Two is not rated.

The Series:
When Moonlighting first aired in the 80′s, I watched an episode here and there. I liked the show, but I didn’t follow it religiously. Looking at it again years later on DVD, I viewed it with a much different perspective.

Watching the pilot again, I found myself surprisingly unimpressed by it. The mystery featured on the first episode seemed absurd and very predictable. It came across as nothing more than something to help them string a series of confrontations between David and Maddie together. That was another thing that bothered me. The show was almost nothing but fighting between the main characters. It got tedious and redundant very quickly. I also found the story itself to be very slowly paced. There were several scenes that seemed dragged out for the sake of time. In short, the pilot made me wonder why I found Moonlighting to be interesting at all.

However, going back and watching more episodes I found they finally hit a groove after Episode 3. They realized what the strengths of the show were and got rid of many of the problems from the pilot. The clever dialogue got better and better. The pacing of the show sped up significantly. The mysteries got better. The fights between David and Maddie became a little more endearing. The final result is the show that everyone knows and loves.

The casting of Moonlighting was very good, but the drama that went on behind the camera certainly tainted the show. Cybill Shepherd was pretty and hard headed as Maddie Hayes. Then unknown Bruce Willis was very cocky and smart-mouthed as David Addison Jr.. When the two were put together, the sparks really did fly. Unfortunately it’s easy to tell that the actors hated each other in real life and it kind of taints all the snappy banter between the two. Allyce Beasley was also well cast as Agnes DiPesto, the rhyming secretary for the detective agency. Her running gag of answering the phone with a rhyme was clever at first, but it really wore on my nerves over time.

If you’re a fan of the series from the 80′s, then this is a required addition to your collection. Fans of Bruce Willis will want to view it too. But for those that missed the show when it first aired, Moonlighting will be especially worth checking out if you like romantic comedies. The mysteries on the show are really secondary to the romantic conflict between the main characters.

The Extras:
While most DVD collections of TV shows are light on bonus features, this one is quite the opposite. The main cast participates in the extras and there’s a little bit of everything included. Here’s what you’ll find:

Cast and Crew Commentaries including Glenn Gordon Caron (Creator), Cybill Shepherd and Bruce Willis – I listened to Willis’ commentary on one episode with one of the directors and was impressed by it. They are quite candid about their experiences on the show. They are very complimentary of Shepherd while at the same time relating their experiences of how she was difficult to work with. It seems like water under the bridge, but you get a better idea of how demanding Shepherd was with everyone (she told the director how he could and could not film her). I was amazed that Willis still remembered the names of some of the extras on the show. All in all they are good commentaries.

“Not Just a Day Job” & “Inside the Blue Moon Detective Agency”- The Story of Moonlighting – This two part ‘making of’ feature details the beginnings of the show, the early casting, the filming, the popularity, and everything else you could want to know about Moonlighting. Willis and Shepherd are interviewed (though not together) as well as a number of the other cast and crew. It ends up being a really good documentary.

The Moonlighting Phenomenon – This short featurette details the popularity and appeal of the show. A few members of the Moonlighting fanclub tell why they liked the show so much and why it’s still appealing to them today.

The Bottom Line:
Snappy dialogue, funny scripts, and romantic tension between a young Bruce Willis and Cybill Shepherd make Moonlighting worth checking out if you’re an original fan of the series or a fan of romantic comedies that has never seen it before.

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