TV DVD REVIEW: 2004 World Series of Poker

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“Who exactly should buy this set is limited to those of you, like me, that make up the over 1.5 million households that watched the 2004 World Series of Poker, if you enjoyed it then, you will enjoy it now, over and over again.”

Poker has taken the world by storm, and suddenly everyone wants to gamble their money away. It has become cool to be one of the fellas sitting at the green with a huge stack as you sit there check raising stupid tourists and taking huge pots off them with stacks and towers of checks until you can’t see over them, playing all night High Limit Hold ‘Em at the Taj where the sand turns to gold… Whoa… sorry, got a little too much Rounders in me… Back to reality.

Anyway, like I was saying… Poker is now the latest craze and with that home entertainment folks are taking full advantage, but there is really only one poker DVD set to buy and that is the World Series of Poker. This is the creme-de-la-creme, this is what it is all about and ESPN is the only one to present poker in a fun and entertaining way as ESPN commentators and poker aficionados, Lon McEachern and Norman Chad guide you through this No-Limit Texas Hold’Em Event. Ten thousand dollars gets you in and it isn’t over until someone has it all and with a record-breaking 2,576 players in the 2004 World Series of Poker there are a lot of cards to be played.

This 3-disc set contains ESPN Original Entertainment’s final 10 programs from the telecast of the 2004 World Series of Poker along with a large group of special features, which also include more cards as the fellas sit down to play a little Kansas City Lowball, $2,000 Buy-In Pot Limit Omaha and $1,000 Buy-In No-Limit Texas Hold’Em. There are also three separate features with the winner of the event including an in-depth commentary during the final table as he wins the $5 million prize, which leads me to my one largest complaint… Why do they give away the winner on the back of this DVD case?!?!?

I did not mention the name of the winner of the World Series above simply because I believe that is part of the fun of watching. Granted you may already know if you are a poker fan, and once you have watched this DVD once you will obviously know the next time you sit down to watch it, but the same goes for any classic film. You never want to know the ending beforehand. Therefore, I will not reveal the name of the winner, you can find that out for yourself if you are so inclined.

The rest of the features include a feature on the late Stu Unger, a Top-10 moments from the 2004 tournament feature, a poker-talk segment that gives you the breakdown on all the table lingo you are going to hear during the event and a Tournament of Champions feature. Overall the featurettes aren’t exactly interesting to me, you get enough of that during the actual event episodes as they give you insider info on the players, but the poker action is great.

I am one of those guys that loves to watch the World Series of Poker on ESPN and with a limited number of episodes shown over a long period of time I always get caught up watching the rebroadcasts, which I enjoy just as much as I did the first time… I don’t really know why though. Poker is just fun to watch as long as the boys at ESPN are running the show, they really know how to go inside the game and keep it interesting.

Who exactly should buy this set is limited to those of you, like me, that make up the over 1.5 million households that watched the 2004 World Series of Poker, if you enjoyed it then, you will enjoy it now, over and over again.

This DVD is available now at www.espnshop.com and www.championshipdvd.com, and will be available in retail outlets on August 23rd.

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