I remember the early 90’s when hit police shows such as Law and Order and Homicide: Life on the Street were ruling TV. After some lackluster DVD releases in the past and years after the show has been off the air, Shout Factory has collected all 122 episodes of the hit show (including the movie from 2000) in the Homicide: Life On The Street – The Complete Series DVD set. All seven seasons on 35 discs are here with an extra bonus features DVD that fans and those wanting the complete experience will hit the streets for.
From executive producers Barry Levinson and Tom Fontana (creator of HBO’s hit series Oz), and based on the book Homicide: A Year On The Killing Streets by David Simon (creator and executive producer of HBO’s The Wire), Homicide: Life On The Street follows a group of hard-working detectives in the rough streets of Baltimore. Fans already know that the key thing that made this series work is the all-star cast it featured, such as Richard Belzer as John Munch (who would go off to play the same character on Law and Order: SVU), Andre Braugher in one of his greatest roles, Yaphet Kotto, Melissa Leo, Ned Beatty, and more. Here they come together and sometimes fall apart as they do their best to solve murders and crimes while trying not to lose themselves to the ever increasing madness in the streets. Another thing that made this show so interesting is how it defied having a happy ending or resolved cases like most TV shows were doing back then, which gave a nice dose of dark realism that made the show both famous and infamous during its run.
If that wasn’t enough, the series became so popular, that even movie stars and other famous celebrities were lining up to guest star on it. It was awesome seeing stars such as Robin Williams, Paul Giamatti, James Earl Jones, Bruce Campbell, and loads more back in their day playing guest roles on this show. Each of them were able to bring their talent to an already talent filled series and made it that much better which shows even today on this set. While it would’ve been nice to have had a cleaned up, high definition version of this show, the DVD looks and sounds as good as the format allows. The sweet news though is that there’s audio commentary on select episodes from the cast and crew, and the bonus disc that includes a ton of extras with new interviews from some of the cast and crew, the Homicide finale movie, and the crossover episodes from Law and Order that fans have cried out for are finally available in this set.
Homicide: Life On The Street – The Complete Series in a no-brainer for those who love police dramas like I do, are a fan of the show, or those just looking for a great series to watch. While it looks and feels a bit dated, the awesome performances, guest stars and hard-hitting drama still stand the test of time.