DVD Review “The Roman Holidays: The Complete Series”

romanholidayCreated by Hanna-Barbera
Voices of Dave Willock, Shirley Mitchell, Stanley Livingston, Pamelyn Ferdin, Daws Butler, Dom DeLuise, Hal Smith
Distributed by: Warner Archive
Rating: Not Rated
Running Time: 292 minutes

Our Score: 3 out of 5 stars

When it comes to Hanna-Barbera, I am always curious to see anything that they have created, especially obscure shows like “The Roman Holidays”. This animated series was aired back in 1972 on NBC, but only ran for 13 episodes. The show is set in 63 AD but has a very modern day feel to it. Daws Butler is a blast voicing Brutus the Lion, who is known best for voicing Yogi Bear, Huckleberry Hound and many more. Dom DeLuise also voices Mr. Evictus and gets some good laughs. It is probably not the best product that Hanna-Barbera ever released, especially since it was canceled after a few episodes but it is worth checking out if you are a fan of classics animated series.

Official Premise: Somewhere between the pre-hysterical Hanna Barbera’s Stone Age of The Flintstones and the fantastic future of The Jetsons lie The Roman Holidays, tackling family life circa AD 63. Augustus “Gus” Holiday (Dave Willock) is the man of the clan, lovely and level-headed spouse Laurie (Shirley Mitchell) keeps things on an even keel while teen-age trouble maker Happius (Stanley Livingston) and child prodigy Precocia (Pamelyn Ferdin) threaten to break the Pax Familia. Housed at the humble Venus de Milo Arms, the Holidays face constant threats from their aptly named landlord Mr. Evictus (Dom DeLuise, in his toon debut) while Gus gets equally harried by his boss, Mr. Tycoonius (Hal Smith) at the Forum Construction Company. It’s a good thing he gets to come home to a Roman’s best friend – his pet lion, Brutus (Daws Butler)! So hop aboard your chariot – it’s time to pay a visit to The Roman Holidays!

Episodes included are: “Double Date”, “The Lion’s Share”, “Star For A Day”, “Hero Sandwich”, “The Big Split Up, “Hectic Holiday”, “Switch Is Which”, “That’s Show Biz”, “Double Dilemma”, “A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To The Chariot”, “A Buried Treasure”, “Cyrano De Happius” and “Father Of The Year”. Warner Archive is releasing this series as part of their Hanna-Barbera Classic Collections. They have been behind releasing many rare Hanna-Barbera show’s as part of their manufacture-on-demand (MOD) service. The episodes are released with their original aspect ratio of 1.37:1. They have not been remastered or restored but have been at least manufactured from the best-quality video master currently available. They look decent but could have used a little sprucing up. They also have a typical Dolby Digital Mono track included, which is the usual for Warner Archive MOD releases.

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