THE BIG BANG THEORY:
THE BIG BANG THEORY is one of the surprising comic delights of the 2007-2008-television season. Clever, cute and surprisingly endearing, THE BIG BANG THEORY applies a science-based title to a sitcom involving a pair of geeky genius roommates, who have difficulty interacting with those of normal intelligence. Leonard Hofstadter (Johnny Galecki) and Sheldon Cooper (Jim Parsons) are Caltech theoretical physicists by day, and über-nerds by night- who spend most of their time in the virtual world of shoot ‘em up games or with fellow Caltech über-nerds Howard Wolowitz (Simon Helberg) and Rajesh Koothrappali (Kunal Nayyar).
Things change, when a pretty young woman of fairly average intelligence named Penny (Kaley Cuoco) moves into the apartment next door to Leonard and Sheldon. Despite her attractiveness, Penny is down to earth and quite friendly to the geeky smart guys living next door… even if she doesn’t always understand what they are talking about. As expected, Leonard becomes infatuated with Penny, and decides he wants to make a real connection to the world outside of geekdom. While Leonard’s clumsy pursuit Penny, not to mention the social ineptitude of he and his small circle of friends, generates much of the show’s humor, THE BIG BANG THEORY is also very smart, delivering jokes that sometime border on brilliance. The cast of THE BIG BANG THEORY is also perfect. Galecki is a great underdog; one who you hope gets the girl. Parsons floats innocently through his character’s deluded bubble of self-importance. Cuoco is the right combination of pretty, sweet and approachable. Helberg nails the goofy "mama’s boy" wannabe ladies’ man nerd. Nayyar is a scene-stealer, especially during his moments of female proximity panic induced silence.
THE BIG BANG THEORY: THE COMPLETE FIRST SEASON ($30) comes to DVD in a three-disc set that features the following seventeen episodes that were aired during its freshman year: Pilot, The Big Bran Hypothesis, The Fuzzy Boots Corollary, The Luminous Fish Effect, The Hamburger Postulate, The Middle Earth Paradigm, The Dumpling Paradox, The Grasshopper Experiment, The Cooper-Hofstadter Polarization, The Loobenfeld Decay, The Pancake Batter Anomaly, The Jerusalem Duality, The Bat Jar Conjecture, The Nerdvana Annihilation, The Pork Chop Indeterminacy, The Peanut Reaction and The Tangerine Factor.
Warner Home Video has made all seventeen episodes from THE BIG BANG THEORY: THE COMPLETE FIRST SEASON available on DVD in a 1.78:1 widescreen presentation that features the anamorphic enhancement for 16:9 displays. The episodes look really quite impressive on DVD, which is probably an upshot of the show being produced for high definition broadcast. The SD DVD produces a nicely sharp and well-defined image. Colors are rendered with a nice level of saturation, while the flesh tones come across attractively. Blacks are accurate, whites are clean and the contrast quite good thanks to better than average sitcom lighting. Visual imperfections are virtually absent. Digital compression artifacts remain under the radar.
THE BIG BANG THEORY: THE COMPLETE FIRST SEASON arrives on DVD with Dolby Digital 2.0 channel surround stereo soundtracks. The soundtracks get the job done, but the nature of the sitcom beast places the majority of the sound front and center. There are occasional channel separations, but they remain fairly mild. Fidelity is good for a television production; the music sounds fine and sound effects are fairly convincing. Dialogue is crisp and always easy to understand. No other language tracks have been included on the DVD, but English, French, Spanish, Portuguese, Korean, Chinese and Thai subtitles are provided.
Music underscores the basic interactive menus, which allow one access to the standard episode selection and set up features, as well as a single supplement- Quantum Mechanics Of The Big Bang Theory, a seventeen-minute interview based program with the cast and creative team.
THE BIG BANG THEORY is a delightfully smart and funny sitcom that has a lot of broad appeal. The DVD release looks very good and sounds just fine. Recommended.
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