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Scrubs
The Complete Sixth Season

review by Zach B.

 

 

Rating: TV 14

Running Time: 522 minutes

Starring: Zach Braff, Donald Faison, Sarah Chalke, Judy Reyes, John C. McGinley, Neil Flynn, Ken Jenkins

 

Studio: Disney

Retail Price: $39.99

Features: Audio Commentaries, My Making Of: "My Musical", Judy Reyes Keeps Talking, Deleted Scenes, Alternate Lines, The "Third Tier," The Debra and Stephanie Show

Specs: 1.33:1 Full Screen, English Dolby Digital 5.1, French Stereo, Spanish Stereo, English Subtitles, French Subtitles, Spanish Subtitles, English Closed Captions, Scenes (4 per episode), Three-Disc Set

Released: October 30th, 2007

 

 

All the sixth season episodes of "Scrubs" are presented in 1.33:1 full screen, just like previous seasons. Like all the other sets, these transfers are nearly perfect. Colors are saturated quite well with bold colors that really stand out and don't smear, detail is quite excellent, black levels hit their mark and fleshtones are quite accurate. All the episoes look razor sharp, too. The only thing I have to nitpick about is that there is some noise to be had. Other than that, these episodes look fantastic.

 

All the episodes are presented in English 5.1 Dolby Digital, and these mixes are pretty nice. Dialogue is very easy to hear and sounds crisp, and all the music - such as the songs used and Jan Stevens' score - come out rather strongly and fill up the channels well. The surround effects also pack small punches here and there. Pitch-perfect as far as an enveloping soundtrack is the standout episode "My Musical," where the Broadway-style songs fill the channels with lots of life. In all though, these are fine mixes for this comedic show.

Also included are French Stereo and Spanish Stereo tracks, English closed captions, plus subtitles in English, French and Spanish.

 

In a remarkable change of pace from previous seasons of the show on DVD, EVERY single episode of the season has an Audio Commentary - wow. The participants are varied... (deep breath): "My Mirror Image" features Actor Neil Flynn; "My Best Friend's Baby's Baby and My Baby's Baby" has commentary from Co-Executive Producer/Writer Neil Goldman and Co-Executive Producer/Writer Garrett Donovan; "My Coffee" features Director/Editor Rick Blue and Production Designer Cabot McMullen; "My House" features Actor Ken Jenkins and Prop Master John Ornelas; "My Friend With Money" features Actor Neil Flynn and Director/Editor John Michel; "My Musical" features Actor Sarah Chalke and Writer/Producer Debra Fordham; "His Story IV" has Actor Ken Jenkins and Co-Executive Producer/Writer/Actor Mike Schwartz; "My Road To Nowhere" features Writer/Producer Mark Stegeman and Actor Sam Lloyd; "My Perspective" features Writer/Producer Agela Nissel and Makeup Department Head Phullis Williams; "My Therapeutic Month" has Writer Aseem Batra and Set Dresser Patrick Bolton; "My Night To Remember" has Producer Randall Winston and Writer's Assistant Melody Derloshon"; "My Fishbowl" features Actor Neil Flynn and Script Coordinator Sean Russell; "My Scrubs" features Actor Ken Jenkins and Writer Clarence Livingston; "My No Good Reason" has Writer/Producer Jane Bakken, Actor Robert Maschio and Production Coordinator Hillary Hirsch; "My Long Goodbye" features Actor Aloma Wright and Writer Dave Tennant; "My Words Of Wisdom" features Writer/Producer Eric Weinberg and Actor Neil Flynn, "Their Story" has Writer Andy Schwartz" and Actor Robert Maschio; "My Turf War" features Writer/Script Coordinator Sean Russell and Co-Executive Producer/Writer/Actor Mike Schwartz; "My Cold Shower" features Sarah Chalke and Writer Jane Bakken; "My Conventional Wisdom" has Co-Executive Producer/Writer Bill Callahan and Director Michael McDonald; "My Rabbit" features Co-Executive Producer/Writer Neil Goldman, Co-Executive Producer/Writer Garrett Donovan and Writer Asem Batra and FINALLY, "My Point Of No Return" has Donovan, Goldman and Batra. Phew! But where is Zach Braff and Bill Lawrence?

I listened to snippets from a lot of these commentaries, and some are better than others (i.e. some commentaries have gaps of silence and narrate on-screen action). Regardless though, it's great to get so many different perspectives on the series. Plotlines are discussed, there's lots of laughing and jokes, and techniques and production anecdotes are shared. I gather if you sit down and listen to all these commentaries, you can learn a lot about the series. Fans of the show, go nuts - and kudos to those behind the show for pulling this off. Outside of a few animated shows on DVD, I can't recall a single live action show that had a commentary for every episode of a season.

Arguably the most memorable episode of the sixth season is "My Musical," where thanks to a patient's condition, it appears as if all the employees of Sacred Heart Hospital are breaking out into song and dance. In My Making Of: "My Musical", the episode's writer Debra Fordham, along with creator Bill Lawrence and producer Randall Winston, mention that the writers of the show are big fans of musical theater and vowed to do this ambition episode. Guest star Stephanie D'abruzzo, composer Jeff Marx (who did the score for Broadway's "Avenue Q") and composer Paul Perry give their thoughts on being approached and creating the episode. Director Will Mackenzie and the vocal coach share their thoughts, and the cast talk about what it's like doing such a unique episode - and their experiences with singing (or lack of it). Footage of rehearsing and recording the songs are also shown. A lot of fun.

Judy Reyes Keeps Talking keeps in line with past seasons on DVD, where a show's featured actor talks about their character and background. So yep, Reyes (Carla) is on deck. She talks about auditioning for the role, and reveals that her real sister is an actual nurse. Reyes also discusses what it's like to be on the set, her view on Carla, her character's plotlines and a bit more. At nearly 7 minutes, it's worth a watch.

The twelve Deleted Scenes are actually alternate takes of certain sequences. First we see the scene as aired, followed by the version not used. This runs about 16 minutes. There's also a whole slew of Alternate Lines, which are quite amusing. These last 14 minutes in total.

The "Third Tier" has Bill Lawrence and Randall Winston discuss the show's characters that pop up here and there, who often started out as jokes but have become a bit more in the world of the series. Lawrence compares these supporting characters to the ones that pop up in "The Simpsons." We hear from those who play these characters, and some are producers and writers on the show: Winston of course is the doctor with the hook (and also played Death), Mike Schwartz is Lloyd and Garret Donovan plays Councilman Donovan. Definitely a nice tribute to these fun characters and those who portray them. This lasts nearly eight minutes.

Finally, there's The Debra and Stephanie Show. This piece has two key components of the episode "My Musical" - writer Debra Fordham and guest tar Stephanie D'abruzzo - discussing the episode in further detail. Fordham talks about the initial idea of making a musical episode of the series, and reflections on working with the cast and crew on this episode. D'abruzzo also gushes how much of a fan she is of the series. This is a pleasant watch.

Oh, and there's an Easter Egg that reveals plotlines for the upcoming seventh season... sort-of. Out of all the spoilers Bill Lawrence gives, he only says four are true. I have a hunch of what a few of them might be... we'll have to tune in this season to find out what's true. If you find this extra and want to go into the seventh season surprised, and without any suspicions or things to look for, do ignore this extra.

 

As I write this, "Scrubs" is about to go into its seventh and final season. It's a true testament to the show's creative team and actors that the show's spirit has never wavered, and that it still is one of the funniest comedies on television. The sixth season of the series might be its most ambitious in terms of storylines, and the DVD matches that as far as supplements: audio commentaries for EVERY episodes, and some great featurettes. For "Scrubs" fans and sitcom lovers, this is a must-buy.