Did Syndication Prints really look this bad?

Discussion in 'Visual Arts' started by goodiesguy, Jun 13, 2013.

  1. EddieVanHalen

    EddieVanHalen Forum Resident

    I remember when the V series were released on DVD (the Mini Series came first, a year or two later came The Final Battle and finaly the weekly episode season) both the Miniseries and The Final Battle got a new scan from 35 mm elements, OCN, interpositive, copy or whatever, and both looked quite well, especially the miniseries, but when the weekly episodic season was released they didn't do a new scan, they used composite NTSC tapes instead that looked vastly inferior. I don't know if V has been shown on HD on TCM, it would be great to see it released on Blu ray, after all it was the most expensive T.V. series of all times at the time of its production.
     
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  2. sunspot42

    sunspot42 Forum Resident

    Location:
    San Francisco
    We forget about V, but didn't it pioneer a lot of the effects techniques that made ST:TNG possible?
     
  3. Grand_Ennui

    Grand_Ennui Forum Resident

    Location:
    WI

    If I remember correctly, "The Monkees" TV series, in its DVD release, was supposed to be from the same source(s) that Rhino used when they put out their TV show out on VHS as a giant boxed set in the 90s... I'm not sure what they used for their sources on their recent Blu-Ray release...


    True about some Shout! Factory releases not being "pristine" quality, but (and this is just my own opinion), I'll put up with a less than crystal clear image depending on the rarity of the program... For instance, their release of "The Monroes" isn't top-notch, but then again, I would never have expected a series that only ran for only a season, and probably didn't/doesn't have the public at large clamoring for its release, to be put out at all, so with rare programs like that, *I* give them some slack... That doesn't mean that I wouldn't have liked it to be remastered, but it's better than no release at all as far as I'm concerned... I mean I grew up with antenna TV reception in the 70s/80s, so I know what a bad TV image can look like, and most any DVD release of anything I've seen trumps some of the images I picked up over the air back then...

    As far as Rhino goes, I thought their DVD releases of Sid & Marty Krofft's "Land of the Lost" looked really good... I'm not sure what their sources were, I'm guessing they had access to original copies, but I could easily be wrong on that...
     
    Last edited: May 1, 2017
  4. Not sure about Rhino but Shout doesn't do any of their own mastering. They accept what has been done by the studio and license it. They do, however, contract with another company to out special features together for their product. As far as Rhino and The Monkees goes, I don't think they particularly paid attention to the quality of their releases that much u til they did the Blu-Ray remasters (or had someone else do them). Part of that is the picky audience that we have now in the hi def world, part of that is how unforgiving Blu is when it comes to lousy mastering choices and quality of source.
     
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  5. Benjamin Edge

    Benjamin Edge Forum Resident

    Location:
    Milwaukie, OR, US
    On VEI's release of Petrocelli, while they managed to keep the original two respective Paramount Television logos alive on the two seasons (the "Split Rectangle II" logo for season 1, and the "Blue Mountain" for season 2), there is at least one peculiar job: on episode 1x08, the logo has a gunmetal gray background instead of a red background.

    ~Ben
     
  6. sunspot42

    sunspot42 Forum Resident

    Location:
    San Francisco
    I'm surprised Petrocelli ever got a home video release. On the other hand, check out the guest cast listed at its Wikipedia article.

    Petrocelli - Wikipedia

    Whoever did their casting deserved an Emmy...
     
  7. McLover

    McLover Forum Resident

    Location:
    East TN
    The Winston ads got axed because of the USA FCC (your equivalent of your CRTC) banning tobacco and cigarette advertising on TV stations around 1970. Just to explain why this "Fred's two feet" line got chopped often.
     
  8. pdenny

    pdenny Blow up your TV

    Wow!
     
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  9. Vidiot

    Vidiot Now in 4K HDR!

    Location:
    Hollywood, USA
    There's a hundred places in LA that will do the mastering affordably and efficiently. All they have to do is want to do it and decide what the budget is. Their problem is that they don't know the difference between good mastering and bad mastering.
     
  10. rmath84

    rmath84 Well-Known Member

    It's a shame that all the Siskel and Ebert stuff on Youtube looks so bad. Maybe it's available elsewhere in better quality but a search never seems to bring anything better up.
     
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  11. Benjamin Edge

    Benjamin Edge Forum Resident

    Location:
    Milwaukie, OR, US
    List of Star Trek season 1 opening titles over the years:

    * Version 1, which has the following traits:
    ** Narration during first half of the opening title
    ** Main Title Theme - Electric Violin Version
    ** "Created by Gene Roddenberry" appearing under the title of the series.
    ** William Shatner's billing does not have "Starring" over it.
    ** Initially seen on "The Man Trap" and "Charlie X"
    NOTE: While this first version did not appear on most home media and in syndication after 1984, it did show up on the pre-2006 DVD releases on the two episodes in question.

    * Version 2, which has the following traits:
    ** No narration during the first half of the opening title
    ** Main Title Theme - Electric Violin Version
    ** Gene Roddenberry's creator credit removed from series logo and moved to end of Act IV (and later to beginning of end title), but will reappear under series logo in opening title for seasons 2-3.
    ** "Starring" above William Shatner's billing
    ** Seen only on "Where No Man Has Gone Before"

    * Version 3, which has the following traits:
    ** Narration during first half of opening title restored
    ** Main Title Theme - Electric Violin Version
    ** No creator credit under series logo
    ** "Starring" above William Shatner's billing
    ** "Also Starring" above Leonard Nimoy's billing
    ** Initially seen on all episodes from "The Naked Time" to "Dagger of the Mind"
    NOTE: Pre-2006 DVDs restored this version of the opening on the aforementioned episodes and, for some reason, mistakenly on three episodes that used the cello version of the theme tune: "The Corbomite Maneuver," "Balance of Terror" and "Conscience of the King."

    * Version 4 -- has same traits as version 3, except for:
    ** Main Title Theme - Cello Version
    ** Initially seen on all episodes from "The Corbomite Maneuver" to "Operation: Annihilate!"
    NOTE: Very common on home media and in syndication after 1984 since it replaced the electric violin version of theme tune on all season 1 episodes, except for "Where No Man Has Gone Before."

    ~Ben
     
    Last edited: Jul 14, 2017
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  12. Claus LH

    Claus LH Well-Known Member

    Memories, memories....coming to the US on vacations in the mid-late 70es, I was gobbling up US TV and I vividly remember the film chain "quality" which, even in a major market such as DC, was variable, to say the least.
    Much seemed to depend on the operator, as well. WDCA (Channel 20 here) was guilty of running chopped-up prints, but their cueing was usually very clean, no lurching onto the air like you would see late at night on some channels.
    Horror movies, especially Japanese ones, seemed to get all the same "love" as the US series: grainy ugly prints, cut for run time, beaten to hell...on and on.
    One example I remember well: a monster movie was on the last reel, and either the transport motor on the film chain was dying, or the print had "bagged up" on the take-up reel. Every 10 seconds or so, the film would slow down, worse and worse, until one thought it would grind down to a freeze frame and then burn...you can imagine the audio. It made it through the end credits, but either no one was watching, or they were just waiting for it to be over.

    It would make for a fascinating DVD to have old off-the-air recordings of terrible film chain moments collected for our "enjoyment."

    C
     
  13. It's a pretty good release I just wish that it was a high def release as the show was shot on film and looked pretty good back in the day. The Rockford Files release, for example, looks pretty decent on Blu-ray (although there's a bit too much grain removal used and the skin textures are, at times a wee bit too waxy, suggesting it is an older transfer).

    I'd love Lou Grant as well in high definition but, given that the audience for a vintage show like that is shrinking, I doubt we will see it released on Blu-ray disc much less 4K. The show just isn't popular enough. It's too bad because the writing on the show was top notch. It was shot on and edited on film.
     
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  14. Benjamin Edge

    Benjamin Edge Forum Resident

    Location:
    Milwaukie, OR, US
    And if VEI ever releases The Magician (1973 TV series), then I still think it won't look as remastered...

    ~Ben
     
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  15. That was a blast from the past. Great series with Bill Bixby.
     
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  16. Vidiot

    Vidiot Now in 4K HDR!

    Location:
    Hollywood, USA
    No, it was all done on film with optical printers. Star Trek: The Next Generation started doing their composites with pin-registered scanning in standard-def video over at Composite Image Systems in Hollywood (now known as eFilm, a division of Deluxe) and also at Unitel Video (formerly on the Paramount lot). I mastered the first two V movies for Warner Bros., all from low-con 35mm prints, and that was used for syndication and 1980s home video. I think they went back to the o-neg for the later DVD version.
     
  17. MikaelaArsenault

    MikaelaArsenault Forum Resident

    Location:
    New Hampshire
    Which version has Space, The Final Frontier?
     
  18. Benjamin Edge

    Benjamin Edge Forum Resident

    Location:
    Milwaukie, OR, US
    All of the above except for version 2 seen on "Where No Man Has Gone Before."

    ~Ben
     
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  19. MikaelaArsenault

    MikaelaArsenault Forum Resident

    Location:
    New Hampshire
    Thank you.
     
  20. JFOK

    JFOK Member

    Location:
    Cape Cod, Mass.
    Hi All,

    I grew up watching NYC TV as a kid and feel that of all the NY TV stations that mostly ran syndication prints (WPIX, WNEW & WOR), channel 11 WPIX seemed to have the best prints. I remember their prints being clean, but a bit on the soft side.

    John
     
  21. The Panda

    The Panda Forum Mutant

    Location:
    Marple, PA, USA
    I definitely remember watching some cartoons as a kid and after the cartoon, you could see the film spooling through the machine, hear audio clicks, and then black as the tape ended.
     
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  22. HGN2001

    HGN2001 Mystery Picture Member

    Occasionally we'd get New York analog signals down in Philly, and you're right - the New York stations always got top-notch syndicated prints.
     
  23. Vidiot

    Vidiot Now in 4K HDR!

    Location:
    Hollywood, USA
    Several of the major NY and LA stations could and did run 35mm prints on occasion, but most of the time it was just 16mm.
     
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  24. sunspot42

    sunspot42 Forum Resident

    Location:
    San Francisco
    I remember watching TV while visiting Los Angeles in the mid-'70s as a little kid and thinking it looked "better" than it typically did back home in Phoenix. Although even there, some stations (the local NBC affiliate) looked much, much better than others (the local independent - yeeesh!).
     
  25. HGN2001

    HGN2001 Mystery Picture Member

    I suspect that the NY stations in general had a lot more funds available as they were owned by larger conglomerates for the most part. So they'd have had money to invest in better film-chain equipment and transmitters.
     
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