Now the father finds her
beguiling (watch out C.C.!).
Even though I have watched every episode of THE NANNY more times that I care to admit, the series continues to have me busting a gut every time I sit down to watch it. A mixture of funny lines, character based humor, physical comedy and a touch of romance, THE NANNY was the I LOVE LUCY of a new generation. THE NANNY stars Fran Drescher as Fran Fine, an ordinary gal from Flushing Queens, who finds herself caring for the three children of wealthy British Broadway producer Maxwell Sheffield (Charles Shaughnessy). Also serving in a domestic capacity in the Sheffield household, is the wisecracking butler Niles (Daniel Davis), who is continually taking hilarious pot shots at his bossís snooty business associate C.C Babcock (Lauren Lane). Although sometimes relegated to the background, Nicholle Tom, Benjamin Salisbury and Madeline Zima portray the Sheffield children Maggie, Brighton and Grace, who contribute more to the comedy as the series progresses. Finally, we come to the showís two hysterically funny scene stealers- Renťe Taylor as Franís overbearing Jewish mother Sylvia and Ann Morgan Guilbert as her dotty grandmother Yetta. Look for Rachel Chagall to make some hilarious appearances as Franís dimwitted best friend Val Toriello.
THE NANNY: THE COMPLETE THIRD SEASON ($40) comes to DVD in a three-disc set that features all twenty-seven episodes that were aired during year three. The twenty-seven featured episodes are as follows: Pen Pal, Franny And The Professor, Dope Diamond, A Fine Family Feud, Val's Apartment, Shopaholic, Oy Vey, You're Gay, The Party's Over, The Two Mrs. Sheffields, Having His Baby, The Unkindest Gift, The Kibbutz, An Offer She Can't Refuse, Oy To The World, Fashion Show, Where's Fran?, The Grandmas, Val's Boyfriend, Love Is A Many Blundered Thing, Your Feets Too Big, Where's The Pearls?, The Hockey Show, That's Midlife, The Cantor Show, Green Card, Ship Of Fran's, A Pup In Paris. Season three highlights include Fran and Val sharing an apartment; romance begins to blossom between the nanny and her boss; an animated holiday episode; the Sheffield family tags along on Franís tropical cruise vacation and Fran stows away on a flight to Paris and gets an unexpected declaration from her boss.
Sony Pictures Home Entertainment has made all the episodes that comprise THE NANNY: THE COMPLETE THIRD SEASON available on DVD in the proper full screen aspect ratios of their original television broadcasts. Shot on videotape during the mid to late 1990s, THE NANNY is not a visual feast, but looks nice on DVD. Certainly, these presentations do hold up better than syndicated rebroadcasts, not to mention being free of pesky commercials. The generally solid and renders a good level of standard definition detail. Colors are vivid and donít demonstrate any undue smearing. Additionally, the flesh tones come across nicely. Blacks are deep and the whites appear crisp. Contrast is smooth and the picture looks fine, despite the flat sitcom lighting. Digital compression artifacts remain under the radar.
All the episodes featured in THE NANNY: THE COMPLETE THIRD SEASON come with Dolby Digital 2.0 channel stereo soundtracks, which decode to standard surround in a reasonably effective manner. This being a 1990ís era sitcom, the sound is very much front-loaded, but some sound does bleed into the rear channels. Dialogue is accurately rendered (including Fran Drescher characteristic nasal whine) and remains totally understandable. No other language tracks have been included on the disc, but Spanish subtitles are provided. Music underscores the basic interactive menus, which allow one access to the standard episode selection and set up features. No extra content has been provided. One last note, I was less than impressed with the packaging, which is a standard keep case with a deep hub that allows all three discs to be stacked on top of each other.
With its moments of gut busting hilarity, THE NANNY remains a personal favorite. Sonyís DVD set looks and sounds just fine. Recommended to fans. Hopefully the remaining seasons will not take years to arrive on DVD.
reviews are Copyright © 2009 THE CINEMA LASER and may not be copied
or reprinted without the written consent of the publisher.