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Sony Pictures Home Entertainment presents

Charlie's Angels: The Complete Third Season (1978/1979)

Kris Munroe: "I don't think I'm all in this."
Kelly Garrett: "I don't think we're supposed to be."- Cheryl Ladd, Jaclyn Smith

Stars: Kate Jackson, Jaclyn Smith,David Doyle, Cheryl Ladd, John Forsyth
Other Stars: Farrah Fawcett-Majors, Michael Conrad, Scatman Crothers, Herb Edelman, James Hong, Dean Martin, Vic Morrow, Dick Sargent, Robert Urich, Horst Buchholz,Stephen Collins,Farrah Fawcett,Dolly Read,Jackie Stewart,Bill Vint,, Bert Freed, Pat Delaney, Mercedes McCambridge, Jamie Lee Curtis, Casey Kasem, Ray Wise, Linden Chiles, Gretchen Wyler, Peter Donat,Lonny Chapman,Fran Ryan, Parley Baer, Jack Murdock, Doug Sheehan, Hermione Baddeley, Gary Collins, Robert Davi, Billy Barty, Jonathan Frakes, Lloyd Bochner, Don Galloway, Richard Bakalyan, James Gammon, David Hedison, John McIntire, Denny Miller, Herb Vigran, Wynn Irwin, Bubba Smith, Zalman King, Arthur Malet, Raymond Singer, Frank M. Benard, Dennis Cole, Cesare Danova, John Colicos, Art LaFleur, Audrey Landers, Deborah Richter, Sarah Purcell, Jeri Lea Ray, Ronnie Schell, Pat Crowley, James Sikking, Tad Tadlock
Director: various

MPAA Rating: Not Rated for (nothing objectionable)
Run Time: 19h:41m:35s
Release Date: 2006-07-04
Genre: television

Image Transfer
Audio Transfer
B B-B+B+ D


DVD Review

After a wait that has often signalled the death of a series on DVD, Sony delivers another season of the Spelling/Goldman hit series Charlie's Angels. Kate Jackson, Jaclyn Smith, and Cheryll Ladd return as Sabrina, Kelly, and Kris, who get their orders from the mysterious, never seen Charles Townsend and his associate, John Bosley (David Doyle). Considering the show's success, not a lot has changed in the formula: take three attractive women and send them out on harrowing investigative cases, and pass up no opportunity to display their physical assets. The third season would be the last for Jackson, and marked the turning point in the show's popularity as ratings waned over the final two seasons, each with a new actress joining the cast.

The show managed to survive the loss of its leading sex goddess, Farrah Fawcett-Majors, after the first season, but as part of getting out of her contract, the original Angel returns for a trio of episodes here. Fawcett makes her first reappearance in Angel Come Home, when newly engaged Jill returns at the request of an old car racing companion. In Mother Angel she is put in charge of a young girl who witnessed a murder, and joins the team to rescue her kidnapped sister in Angel in a Box.

The third season includes a pair of two-part episodes. The first is the star-studded season opener, Angels in Vegas, which would have originally aired as a feature length episode, and served as a tie-in for that season's launch of another Spelling/Goldman series, Vega$ (star Robert Urich makes a cameo). Dean Martin guest stars as Frank Howell, a self-made millionaire who won his casino at a craps table. When his best friends start turning up murdered, he hires the Angels to investigate. The second is Terror on Skis, which finds the girls at a ski resort trying to stop the President's Special Envoy to the UN (Dennis Cole), who is entered in an international competition, from being kidnapped by foreigners with a vendetta.

As in previous seasons, the girls are sent on a variety of undercover assignments. They head to an elite women's spa while investigating the murder of a famous actress in Angels in Springtime, get to play cheerleader in Pom Pom Angels, pose as students at an all girls school in Teen Angel, and take to sea to uncover a smuggling ring in Angels Ahoy. The Angels also get to run for their money as contestants in a marathon (Marathon Angels), dabble in the supernatural in Haunted Angels, head to the track to discover why a rich gambler was murdered in Angels in the Stretch, infiltrate a dance club in Disco Angels (look for softcore producer Zalman King, of Nine 1/2 Weeks and The Red Shoe Diaries fame, as a crazed DJ) and become wanted women when they are "duped" by imposters in Counterfeit Angels.

Charlie's Angels never takes itself too seriously. The writers occasionally poke fun at the obvious exploitation factor and part of the fun is watching the many investigative faux pas the girls manage to commit, from openly fraternizing with each other while undercover to becoming involved with their suspects. A couple of the better gaffes this season include Sabrina casually abandoning her revolver in reach of a prime suspect (Winning is for Losers), or Kris wandering around aimlessly for an entire episode suffering from amnesia—all the while carrying her purse with her ID inside (Angel on my Mind).

While the routine is usually pretty straight forward, a few episodes do take a break from convention. After being chided, Bosley initiates a game to see whether he is as predictable as the girls make out in Angels in Waiting and the crew have to explain the strange goings on when Kris visits family with the Angels on Vacationin Arizona. Utilizing flashbacks, Kris becomes a stand-in for a gangster's dead wife in Rosemary, for Remembrance while trying to reconstruct her murder. Overall the episodes are entertaining but somwhat inconsistent, with the weakest installment being the season finale, Angels Remembered, which is basically a recap episode.

Rating for Style: B
Rating for Substance: B-


Image Transfer

Aspect Ratio1.33:1 - Full Frame
Original Aspect Ratioyes

Image Transfer Review: Image quality is generally pretty good, with nicely saturated colors and consistent black levels, although there is a bit of bleed in places. Source quality is clean for the most part, with stock shots standing out as grainier and defect laden. Not outstanding, but no real complaints here.

Image Transfer Grade: B+

Audio Transfer

 LanguageRemote Access

Audio Transfer Review: Mono audio is clean and generally free of distortion. Dialogue is easy to discern, and sibilance is negligible.

Audio Transfer Grade: B+ 

Disc Extras

Static menu
Scene Access with 24 cues and remote access
Packaging: Thinpak
1 Disc
1-Sided disc(s)
Layers: single

Extras Review: Nothing in the way of extras are included.

Trailers for Gidget and The Flying Nun, I Dream of Jeannie, Ladies Night and an '80s movie compilation which includes Stripes, Ghostbusters, About Last Night, Stand by Me, The Big Chill, The Karate Kid, St. Elmo's Fire can be found on the first disc.

Each episode has seven chapter stops, save the two-parters, which have six apiece. The six single-sided discs are housed in three thinpaks inside a light-medium weight cardboard slip cover. Each case includes episode synopses on the back cover, and a collage of images on the interior.

Extras Grade: D

Final Comments

While a little spotty, the third season of Charlie's Angels provides another 24 entertaining episodes, including the return of fan-favorite Farrah Fawcett. Given the decline in ratings for the final two seasons, I won't be surprised if this is the last of Charlie's Angels we see on DVD.

Jeff Ulmer 2006-08-01