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Reviews » DVD Video Reviews » Newlyweds: Nick and Jessica (Season 1)
Newlyweds: Nick and Jessica (Season 1)
Paramount // Unrated // December 14, 2004
List Price: $29.99 [Buy now and save at Amazon]
Review by Aaron Beierle | posted December 7, 2004 | E-mail the Author
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The Movie:


The latest couple to take the place of Jennifer Lopez and Ben Affleck in the media, singers Nick Lachey and Jessica Simpson gained greater popularity via their MTV reality show, "Newlyweds". Starting off with the two getting married, the show then skips to six months later where the two find that...well, married life isn't exactly what they expected it would be. The two are singers (Simpson has a solo career and is attempting acting, while Lachey was formerly in 98 degrees and is now trying a solo career), but could not be more different in terms of their backgrounds. Jessica had everything done for her as a kid, while Nick actually did some chores.

While Nick's taking care of just about everything would likely result in delight from Jessica, she actually becomes upset (I love to cook for my girlfriend, who couldn't be more appreciative) when her husband tries to move things in or clean up the house. Her solution is to throw money at it by, among other things, hiring a mover or a maid - even when Lachey and his brother are perfectly willing to do the work. Nick lets up and hires a maid, who comes in looking completely spooked by the cameras. When Nick tries to redecorate instead of hiring one, Jessica calls him "such a girl." Nick eventually discusses his 5-year plan to "rid Jessica of her spoiledness", but it seems rather doubtful that that'll ever happen.

Nick continues throughout this season (and the next) to put up with his new bride, who offers up such gems of wisdom as: "Is this chicken, what I have, or is this fish?" she asks Nick. "I know it's tuna. But it says chicken. By the sea." This would be the first of Nick's many, many deadpan glares at Jessica, starring in disbelief at her overwhelming genius. This happens again via phone when Jessica doesn't realize until too late that she's just spent $750 on four pairs of underwear. Also, jealousy turns up when Nick visits the Playboy mansion for a promotional opportunity and when he has to cast dancers for a video. While it was simply entertaining to watch these episodes by themselves when broadcast on MTV, the ability to watch them in a row on DVD really makes one wonder how the two managed to stay in the same house for this long. Maybe at the core, opposites do attract.

The show certainly offers quite a few entertaining moments. The third episode, where Nick decides to take Jessica camping, is priceless. Jessica carries around her giant designer bag, pouting about hiking and suggesting not to overcook a potato because, "it would be too hard." There's also the callback to the "tuna" bit, when Jessica doesn't eat Buffalo wings because she "doesn't eat Buffalo." The first season is very funny at times and, despite seeming scripted a fair amount (there are credited writers), watching the two newlyweds argue about ridiculous things and then abruptly make-up does make for prime cotton candy entertainment.


The DVD

VIDEO: "Newlyweds" is presented by Paramount in 1.33:1 full-frame, the show's original broadcast aspect ratio. The picture quality is generally very good, although some inconsistencies occasionally come up due to the different cameras or lighting. Sharpness and detail are mostly first-rate, as the picture looked as crisp and clear as it did during broadcast on local digital cable.

The only flaw encountered during viewing was some minor shimmering. No compression artifacts were spotted, and some noise at times was likely due to different camera/lighting. No edge enhancement or other concerns were seen. Colors appeared bright, natural and well-saturated, with no problems.

SOUND: "Newlyweds" is presented in 2.0 audio by Paramount. Dialogue seemed crisp and clear, as did background sounds.

EXTRAS: Unfortunately, there's not too much here. A commentary from the two trying to discuss the real behind-the-scenes information or trying to tell their side of the portrayed story would have been nice. The extras that are here are all located on the second disc. The first supplement is a series of new/extended interviews that cover everything from the first time they met until they moved in and started living together. Nick ends the interview segment by going, "I think she's smokin' hot, which doesn't hurt." Next up are highlight reels of "Jessica Moments" and "Nick Moments". After that is the music videos section, which includes Simpson's "Sweetest Sin" and Lachey's "Shut Up". Finally, we get bios and MTV promos.


Final Thoughts: "Newlyweds" is an entertaining reality show that follows the ups and amusing downs of the duo. Paramount's DVD edition doesn't provide quite the amount of supplements I was looking for, but there's some fun supplements and fine audio/video quality. Recommended.

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