Portions of this review are taken from my write-up of Scott Baio Is 45 ... and Single.
Scott Baio, best known for his roles in "Happy Days," "Joanie Loves Chachi" and "Charles in Charge," slipped out of the spotlight after "Charles" ended in 1990 (although he briefly made a splash again as Bob Loblaw in the late, lamented "Arrested Development"). That doesn't mean that Baio wasn't keeping busy the whole time -- in addition to producing, occasionally acting and directing, the actor's reputation as a Tinseltown lothario borders on legendary. His little black book is littered with bold-faced names: Heather Locklear, Melissa Gilbert, Pamela Anderson, Nicole Eggert, Denise Richards and Nicolette Sheridan, just to name a few.
That past informs Baio's present, which is where the winning reality series Scott Baio is 45 ... And Single began in July 2007. That eight-episode series was a hit, Baio worked through his problems and proposed to girlfriend Renee Sloan (who -- spoiler alert -- revealed her pregnancy in the final episode). It was that twist that fuels this second season, wherein Scott Baio confronts his becoming a father for the first time at the age of 46. Much like the previous season, he must come to grips with parenting (he attends a Daddies-To-Be class, with predictably hilarious results) and get past his desires to live life like a bachelor.
As with his ex-girlfriend odyssey, Baio enlists support from his long-time friends Jason Hervey (who created and co-produced this series with Eric Bischoff), Steve Cuccio and Johnny Venocur (better known as Johnny V.), who look on with great amusement. It's those friendships, coupled with Baio's own dry, sardonic take on the entire enterprise and the poignant issues the new father must face that make this series a slightly more rich experience.
In fact, one could make the argument that the series is too short -- it debuted in January 2008, with just nine episodes -- but on the other hand, a lot of ground is covered and stretching it out probably would've ruined its charms. There are moments clearly rigged for the cameras, but a lot of what made the first season so appealing is missing this go-round, since Baio comes off as much more of a pain in the ass, questioning practically every single moment of his day. Nevertheless, he makes a very appealing reality TV star who is wrestling with a slightly less juvenile problem, but nonetheless realizes some very universal truths.
Inexplicably, the episodes on this two-disc set are much closer to what originally aired on VH1, as opposed to the Single episodes. The opening titles, which essentially caught viewers up on Baio's activities heretofore, were absent on the Single episodes but have returned but, again, some of the wonderfully nostalgic array of '80s pop and rock songs (it's a fair assumption they were cleared for broadcast, but not all of 'em made the leap to DVD) are not included.
Presented as originally broadcast in a perfectly adequate 1.33:1 transfer, this DVD set looks about as solid as the VH1 broadcast, which is to say, since the show is shot on what appears to be digital video, there are several instances of softness, high contrast and a bit of blur. Otherwise, the image is acceptably crisp and watchable, with no truly glaring flaws.
As with the visuals, the aural end of things is just as it was on VH1 -- a perfunctory Dolby 2.0 stereo track that conveys the dialogue and soundtrack with no drop-out or distortion. There are no optional subtitles.
The only supplements are found on the second disc of the set: Deleted scenes from the eighth and ninth episodes (titled "The Road to Responsibility" and "End of an Era," respectively) running 16 minutes, 26 seconds and 14 minutes, 43 seconds, respectively.
Scott Baio's salacious past informs his tormented present, which is what gave reality series Scott Baio is 45 ... And Single its premise. The conclusion of that show begat this sequel, wherein Baio wrestles with impending fatherhood at the ripe old age of 46. It's a more contemplative, poignant set of episodes than the relatively lighthearted Single, and for that, a slightly richer viewing experience. Recommended.