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As one of the longest-running variety programs of the post-war era, The Dean Martin Show ran as a fixture on NBC from September 1965 through May 1974, and drew large and loyal audiences. Its format was relatively simple: set in a mock-up of host Dean's living room, it alternated between musical numbers sung by Dean and various guests, and comic blackouts that were ultimately performed by a group of comedy regulars, such as Tom Bosley, Nipsey Russell and Dom DeLuise. The compilation Best of The Dean Martin Variety Show pulls sketches and songs from four episodes of the series, with most of the material unseen since its original network broadcasts. Featured in this collection are 20 full musical performances. Guests include: John Wayne, Orson Welles, Jimmy Stewart, Juliet Prowse, Michael Landon, Joel Grey and many others.
Presiding over the Dean Martin Fan Center, I have first hand knowledge of what the fans have been wanting for years... and this is it! This is the first time that Dean Martin's Variety Show is available without the need to subscribe to the series by mail-order only. I don't give out compliments if they are not warranted, and I would not participate in anything I thought wasn't in the best interest of Dean Martin and the Dean Martin family. I am honored to have had a small involvement in the production of these DVD's.
As a former NBC executive myself, I was there from the beginning, at almost every taping at studio 4 in our Burbank, California studios. I can attest to the fact that these shows have all the same original flavor of the original series broadcasts because the executive consultant on this project was none other than Lee Hale, the show's original Musical Director and later Producer.
Available as an individual DVD, a two-DVD-set and the mega six-volume set, "The Best of Dean Martin Variety Series" is absolutely the best collection yet of entertaining moments from Dean's hugely popular TV show. Unlike the former releases (available by mail-order), Time-Life has taken the approach to keep as much of the individual episodes in the exact order they were originally broadcast in, with editing only the commercials and occasional copyrighted material. This is Dean and his guests at their finest.
(If still up) An advanced 5-minute promo is posted on You Tube under "The Best of The Dean Martin Show" (using the key words 'Time Life') and also on our Fan Center Website. See for yourself. These brilliant episodes have been culled from the original 2-inch quad masters, with the audio being re-mastered to it's finest.
Also included on the DVD's are the extra bonus interviews from celebrities who appeared on the show (Phyllis Diller, Jonathan Winters, Norm Crosby, Lanie Kazan, Florence Henderson, Carol Lawrence, Angie Dickinson, and Original Golddigger Susie Lund Ewing), as well as the show's original Musical Director (later producer) Lee Hale, and commentary by Dean Martin's own daughter, Gail Martin Downey (who appeared on her father's show many times and even hosted the Dean Martin Summer Show).
If you remember The Dean Martin Show or want to see television when it was at it's best - this is it! Even though video tape was being used in those days, this show never stopped for mistakes, leaving in all the flubs and blunders as they actually happened. That's because these entertainers (Especially Dean) could rebound and laugh along with everyone else while having the 'time' of his 'life'. Maybe that's an omen why "Time Life" is the company producing these with care!
For a complete rundown of what is on each of these individual DVD's with their original airdates, check out the "Dean Martin Fan Center" Website.