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Sanford and Son: The First Season
THE STRAIGHT DOPE:
If all sitcoms adhere to a formula of sorts (Lucy wants to perform at the club, George Costanza makes an ass out of himself, Hawkeye pulls a prank), Sanford and Son practically had it's basic structure branded on every script. That's ok, though, because the fun in the show is in the interplay between Fred Sanford (Redd Foxx) and his son Lamont (Demond Wilson), owners of a junk shop in Los Angeles. Foxx, a legend for his blue comedy style, actually plays the old codger with a twinge of sweetness and Wilson perfected the frustrated Lamont early on when he expressed his distaste with the salvage business. The two actors spar constantly (their scenes take up about 90% of the show) and some of the catch phrases are repeated multiple times per episode. Fred calls Lamont "dummy" so often that that might as well be his name.
The broadcast video stock in the 70's was junk and the image here reflects that. The picture lacks contrast, has some tape drop-outs, and looks soft. However, given the source material, probably not shot with any sort of archival usage in mind, it looks acceptable.
The Dolby Digital 2.0 audio sounds fine. Subtitles are available.
No extras are included.
Sanford and Son is classic TV of the first order. From the grainy opening credits (scored with Quincy Jones inimitable theme music) through to the last corny joke, the characters are totally winning. Considering the hours and hours of programming on this two disc set and the low price, Sanford and Son is definitely a good buy.
Email Gil Jawetz at [email protected]