The Real Ghostbusters
Complete Collection (DVD)
Release Date: November 20, 2008
Video: 4:3 Fullscreen and
4:3 Letterbox (intros & commentaries)
Discs: 25 (including the bonus disc)
Layers: 2 (v2d5 & v4d5 are 1 layer)
DVD-Rom Content: Yes (only v1d5, v2d5, v3d5, v4d5, v5d2, bonus)
Regional Coding: All
Video Format: NTSC
You can purchase this set from Amazon
The box set is comprised of 25 DVDs (that includes one bonus DVD), packaged in a specially-constructed firehouse-design box with lenticular panels, containing all 134 half-hour episodes of The Real Ghostbusters (including both 30-minute and 1-hour versions of "Deja Boo") and all 13 half-hour episodes of Slimer!. In total, that's all 140 The Real Ghostbusters stories, and all 33 Slimer! stories. The discs are collected in five separate volumes (each containing 5 DVDs, except for volume 5 which has 4 DVDs), each packaged inside an individual case, with specially-designed cover art. Also included is a 52-page book with episode synopses, trivia, and art. As if that's not enough, there is over 13 hours of bonus material, all of which is detailed below. The bonus DVD alone contains nearly three hours of extra materials, including extended interviews, the never-before-seen promotional pilot (with commentary and storyboards), and more.
Note #1: Volumes 1 through 3 were released individually over the course of two years, starting on March 31, 2009, and ending on August 3, 2010. These sets included all of the episodes and bonus content from the same volumes included in the box set, along with a booklet inside each case. Each volume's booklet contained the same content as the relevant section for that volume of the box set's book, and included the same liner essay (tailored to the individual releases) and credits page as well (so I'm credited in all three booklets). However, the box set is the only way to get Volumes 4 and 5 (they were not released individually, though some people might sell them separately on the Amazon Marketplace or eBay), the bonus DVD which contains the promotional pilot, the Firehouse box, and the complete 52-page book (though individual edited-down booklets were made for each retail volume).
Note #2: When the DVD box set was first released back in November 2008, the five smaller sets ("volumes") inside were each housed in a metal SteelBook™ case. When Vol 1. was released by itself in March 2009, it retained its Steelbook case from the box set. However, in early 2010 TimeLife begun the process of replacing the Steelbook metal cases with plastic cases that are of the same dimensions. It started with the individual release of Vol. 2 in January 2010, then within a few months after that the Complete Collection box set and the individual Vol. 1 started using the plastic cases, as well. The individual releases of Volumes 3-5 that followed were, of course, in plastic cases.
I, Paul Rudoff, am proud to say that I was involved in the making of this set as a design consultant and as a contributor of research and art materials. You will see my credits listed as such on the last page of the episode guide book and in the end credits of all five featurettes (view: #1, #2, #3, #4, #5) and all seven extended interviews (view: #1, #2, #3, #4, #5, #6, #7). Plus I received an extra credit in the back of the book for all of my hard work promoting the set. My four biggest contributions that are easily seen in the final product are: (1) It was my idea to use the firehouse for the outer box. (2) The containment unit background for Volume 5's cover. (3) Janine's color scheme on the Volume 2 cover. (4) Nine scripts on the DVD-ROM portions of all of the volumes.
The talented people behind the series give you a special introduction to 88 select episodes.
Visual Commentary Tracks
Twenty-one select episodes; featuring producers, writers, artists, voice actors, and other series personnel. Watch the commentary participants as they interact, while inset screens show the episode and a dynamic slideshow.
Isolated Music & Effects Tracks
Twenty-four select episodes have an alternate audio track that contains the music and sound effects, but not the voices of the actors.
Original Series Bumpers
The bumpers are included in every episode that originally had them. Even the Slimer! Intros are included.
- Ain't Afraid Of No Ghosts: Creating The Real Ghostbusters
- Animating The Real Ghostbusters
- Who You Gonna Call? The Heroes of The Real Ghostbusters
- Something Strange In Your Neighborhood: The Creatures of The Real Ghostbusters
- He Slimed Me! The Green World of Slimer And The Real Ghostbusters
In addition to the interviews in the featurettes, you'll also get extended interviews recorded in June 2008 with Joe Medjuck (executive producer), Michael C. Gross (executive producer), J. Michael Straczynski (writer & story editor), Len Janson (writer & story editor), Maurice LaMarche (voice of "Egon Spengler"), Laura Summer (voice of first "Janine Melnitz"), Kath Soucie (voice of second "Janine Melnitz"), and Kevin Altieri (director & storyboard supervisor).
- Promotional and Development Art
- "Night Game" Design Gallery
- Background Art
- Headquarters Art
- "The Man Who Never Reached Home" Design Gallery
- Character Designs of The Heroes
- Equipment Art
- The Creature Designs of Everett Peck
- Slimer! Character Designs
- Title Cards
The Original Promotional Pilot
Included by itself, and also with a visual commentary track featuring director Kevin Altieri and artist Dan Riba.
Alternate Textless Series Credits
Two versions of the closing credits without text on top of them.
DVD Promo Trailer
This short one minute trailer was shown at the San Diego Comic-Con in July 2008. It features an interview clip of J. Michael Straczynski interspersed with footage from the series opening. It is also known as the Comic-Con Teaser Trailer. (You can view it in the Multimedia section below.)
DVD-ROM Material (PDF format):
- Series Bibles - ABC Season One, Syndicated Series, ABC Season Two-Three
- Episodic Scripts - for 29 RGB & Slimer! Episodes
(copies of the scripts that I contributed, and a few that are exclusive to this site, can be on The Real Ghostbusters and Slimer! script pages)
- Storyboards - for 15 RGB Episodes, inc. two for the Promo Pilot
Notes & Comments
- Filming of the bonus materials was done on seven consecutive days: Tuesday June 17th to Monday June 23rd, 2008. (source: James Eatock's Behind The Scenes Photo Diary)
- The menus and episodes and featurettes are 4:3 fullscreen, the intros and commentaries are 4:3 letterbox, and the entended interviews on the bonus disc as 4:3 fullscreen within a "tv set" frame. (If the set was done 100% right, the intros would be 4:3 fullscreen, the commentaries would be 16:9 anamorphic widescreen, and the extended interviews would be 16:9 anamorphic widescreen with no framing - as all interviews and commentaries were recorded with HD 16:9 cameras.)
- The current Sony Pictures Television logo screen replaces the original Columbia Pictures Television logo screen at the end of all episodes, except for "Ghostbuster Of The Year" (Vol. 2, Disc 5). You can also see the Columbia Pictures Television logo screen at the beginning of the promo pilot, and at the end of the two alternate series credit sequences, all of which can be found on the bonus disc.
- Killerwatt (Vol. 1, Disc 1) is missing its title screen, even though it is included in the title card gallery on the bonus disc, and was in the master recording used. It seems it exclusion was accidental.
Defects & Errors
- Volume 4 - Almost all episodes on Disc 2 play at a slower than normal speed, resulting in slower/long drawn-out audio (the theme and background music are most noticable), audio defects (the mechanical/echo/hiccupy sound in the dialogue), and a runtime that is considerably longer than that of the original ABC broadcast! For example, excluding the opening title sequence and end credits, the ABC broadcast of Partners In Slime runs 21:20 (11:58 before commercial + 9:22 after commercial = 21:20); the DVD runs 24:04 (1:06 start - 25:10 end = 24:04). The DVD is 2:44 longer than the original ABC broadcast! (In case you're wondering, no new footage was added to the episode on DVD.) This is the same exact problem that plagued the episode on the Ghostbusters II 2005 DVD, which means that the currently available master is screwed up.
- Volume 4 - Almost all of the two-story episodes on Disc 3 play at a faster than normal speed.
- For a list of more defects and errors, read this blog post - especially the user-submitted comments section.
Missing Alternate Episodes
Although this is the "Complete Collection" in the sense that one version of every episode is included, it is not complete in the sense that every
known version of every episode is included. All of the known alternate episodes
were left out, except for the one-hour version of "Deja Boo". The full list of missing alternate episodes is below, categorized by type.
Please don't ask me for copies of these episodes. You can try the forums listed on my e-mail page, and maybe someone there will be able to help you. Thanks.
FULL-LENGTH ALTERNATE AUDIO
* The Boogieman Cometh - Redubbed
* Ghosts 'R Us - Redubbed
* Mr. Sandman, Dream Me A Dream - Redubbed
* Mrs. Roger's Neighborhood - Redubbed
* Slimer, Come Home - Redubbed
* Slimer, Is That You? - Redubbed
* Troll Bridge - Redubbed
* Short Stuff - Production Tape (voices only, no music or effects)
SMALL PORTION OF ALTERNATE AUDIO
* Knock Knock - Alternate Tahiti Music (AVAILABLE ON VHS: Vol. 1 - Knock Knock, which can be purchased in the Store)
* Venkman's Ghost Repellers - Alternate Tahiti Music (AVAILABLE ON VHS: Vol. 4 - Venkman's Ghost Repellers, which can be purchased in the Store)
* A Fright At The Opera - Alternate Series Music
* The Bird Of Kildarby - Alternate Series Music (AVAILABLE ON DVD: Creatures Of The Night, which can be purchased in the Store)
SMALL PORTION OF ALTERNATE VIDEO
* Attack Of The B-Movie Monsters - Bridge Version
Note: The "Short Stuff" Production Tape isn't an official alternate version, per se, but since it exists in fan circles, and does provide an audio track different from the final version of the episode, it's considered an alternate version by the fans.
As given to me on November 19, 2008, this is the EARLY cut of the DR (Direct Response) commercial that was to (or did) air nationally in early 2009 to sell the individual release of Volume 1. The notes I was given on the changes still to be made in this cut were: "sound fx still to be added. text moved up for #800 space. '1980's' reference to be removed. add line, '11 hours of digitally mastered spooky shows.'" This is the two-minute long version. I cut off the last seventeen seconds as it was just a black screen with the theme playing low in the background (this would have been replaced with the ordering information). I was told that a one-minute long version was also going to be made. The voice over is done by Wally Wingert, who also did the narration for the featurettes in the DVD set.
In mid-April 2009, five months after I was given the exclusive private sneak peek at the commercial, I decided to ask Jeff Peisch at Time Life what was going on with it. Volume 1 was released to retail outlets on March 31, 2009, and I hadn't seen this commercial air on television at ANY time in the five months prior, so I thought that maybe Time Life decided to scrap this advertising method. According to Jeff in an e-mail dated April 15th, "the DR-TV spot aired for a few months, but is now off the air." I don't know how I could have missed it. I never saw it on TV, and it's gone completely unnoticed by the community, so apparently no one else saw it either.
TimeLife uploaded the final version (dated 12/11/2008) to YouTube
on March 18, 2009. Watch the early cut first, then check out the final to see what was changed.
The ad is pretty cool, but there is one thing that irks me about it. At 1:16 the announcer says, "Digitally mastered for picture and audio clarity", while the on-screen text says, "11 hours of digitally mastered episodes", and the video does a "before and after wipe" showing the unrestored footage which is then wiped into the restored footage. Although I'd hate to call Andy, Jeff, or anyone else a liar, especially since I didn't personally see the masters myself, I have to call shenanigans on the "before and after wipe". In all my years of tape trading, I have never seen copies that looked as bad as the "before" footage, and that includes VHS copies that were MANY generations removed from the original. Heck, the copies that Fox Family aired, which were the most recent airings here in the United States, looked infinitely better than the "before" footage, and I'm sure that no restoration was done on the masters that Sony gave them to air. To better give you a look at the supposed restoration, here are some frames from the original video file I was given. The "before and after wipe" goes from left to right, so that's the "unrestored masters" on the right and the "cleaned masters" on the left in each shot.
- DVD Promo Trailer (shown at Comic-Con in July 2008) (0:54) (This is included in the DVD box set on the bonus disc)
* ProtonCharging - Streaming / Download (720x480, MP3 22050Hz stereo 48Kbps)
* GBFans - Streaming / Download (480x360, MP3 22050Hz stereo 64Kbps)
* YouTube - Streaming (with GB.net logo before it)
- Full-Length Trailer (distributed online on October 2, 2008) (1:26)
* YouTube - Streaming
* ProtonCharging - Streaming / Download
* YouTube - Streaming (with GB.net logo before it)
* GBFans - Streaming / Download (altered with his personally-registered url at the end)