Created by star Fran Drescher and her ex-husband, Peter Marc Jacobsen, "The Nanny" became a hit for CBS and ran from 1993-1999. Although the nasal-voiced Drescher (Fran to another character: "Do I sound like I have a cold?" The response? "Constantly.") may have seemed to be a bit of a risk to be front-and-center on a sitcom every week, but the show moves the spotlight around enough and figures out enough for the characters to do to keep from wearing the core "fish out of water" idea thin or having too much of Drescher result in the show becoming grating.
As the theme song describes, the show stars Drescher as Fran, a former cosmetics saleswoman from Queens who loses her job and ends up working as a Nanny to the three kids of a widowed British businessman named Maxwell Sheffield. Although she comes from a different background, the kids - Maggie (Nicholle Tom), Brighton (Benjamin Salisbury) and Grace (Madeline Zima) take well to her and she becomes a friend and mother figure to them. She even gets along well with the snooty butler, Niles (Daniel Davis). Throughout the seasons, Fran and Mr. Sheffield (Charles Shaughnessy) started to develop feelings for one another, as well, much to the dismay of his business associate, C.C. (Lauren Lane).
The series still churns out some very funny efforts, such as the animated "Oy to the World", the show's animated holiday special, where Fran and Brighton find themselves in the North Pole with the task of helping Kris Kringle save Christmas. Other highlights include: "Franny and the Professor" (C.C.'s college professor bets he can make Fran into a "Jeopardy" contestant), "The Kibbutz" (While Maxwell wants to sent Maggie to a Swiss convent, Fran convinces her to try a kibbutz instead), "Fashion Show" (Maxwell hires Fran to design the costumes for a charity benefit), "Where's the Pearls?" (Frank loses her memory and Elizabeth Taylor's priceless pearl necklace in an accident) and the season finale, "A Pup in Paris" (which sees Fran accidentally ending up with Maxwell on a romantic trip to Paris.)
Although I wouldn't consider "The Nanny" among the very best of the 90's sitcoms, the series is still often quite consistently funny and the performances are solid. Drescher's trademark nasal whine may have been a bit much for some viewers, but she's more than skilled with the show's many one-liners, and plays off her co-stars quite well. This third season doesn't change the formula much, but the show still remains consistent in quality both in front of and behind the camera.
49. 3- 1 11 Sep 95 Pen Pal
50. 3- 2 18 Sep 95 Franny and the Professor
51. 3- 3 25 Sep 95 Dope Diamond
52. 3- 4 2 Oct 95 A Fine Family Feud
53. 3- 5 9 Oct 95 Val's Apartment
54. 3- 6 16 Oct 95 Shopaholic
55. 3- 7 23 Oct 95 Oy Vey, You're Gay
56. 3- 8 6 Nov 95 The Party's Over
57. 3- 9 13 Nov 95 The Two Mrs. Sheffields
58. 3-10 20 Nov 95 Having His Baby
59. 3-11 27 Nov 95 The Unkindest Gift
60. 3-12 4 Dec 95 The Kibbutz
61. 3-13 11 Dec 95 An Offer She Can't Refuse
62. 3-14 18 Dec 95 Oy to the World
63. 3-15 8 Jan 96 Fashion Show
64. 3-16 15 Jan 96 Where's Fran?
65. 3-17 22 Jan 96 The Grandmas
66. 3-18 5 Feb 96 Val's Boyfriend
67. 3-19 12 Feb 96 Love is a Many Blundered Thing
68. 3-20 19 Feb 96 Your Feets Too Big
69. 3-21 26 Feb 96 Where's the Pearls?
70. 3-22 4 Mar 96 The Hockey Show
71. 3-23 11 Mar 96 That's Midlife
72. 3-24 29 Apr 96 The Cantor Show
73. 3-25 6 May 96 Green Card
74. 3-26 13 May 96 Ship of Fran's
75. 3-27 20 May 96 A Pup in Paris (1)
VIDEO: "The Nanny" is presented by Sony Pictures Home Entertainment in the show's original 1.33:1 full-frame aspect ratio. Given the age of the series, the show looked perfectly satisfactory - no more, no less. Sharpness and detail were not exceptional, but the picture remained consistently at least crisp throughout.
As for faults, I noticed a few slight instances of shimmer and a couple of traces of pixelation. Otherwise, the image remained clean and clear. Colors looked bright and nicely saturated, with no smearing or other concerns.
SOUND: The stereo soundtrack delivered clear audio, with no distortion or other issues.
EXTRAS: Nothing. It's too bad that Drescher couldn't have come back to comment on her most well-known role years later.
A note: the packaging has all three discs stacked on each other in one compartment in the case. While this does minimize packaging, I worry that the discs will get scratched and also, one has to take out discs one and two to get to disc three.
Final Thoughts: Even by season 3, Drescher's nasal laugh hadn't yet turned sour, as the season offers some of the show's better episodes. The DVD set provides no extras, but fine audio/video quality. Recommended for fans.