CAVE IN: Cvlt Nation Premieres “The Hole” Video; Songs Of Townes Van Zandt Vol. III With AMENRA, CAVE IN, And MARISSA NADLER Available On Digital Services Today Through Neurot Recordings

Watch CAVE IN’s “The Hole” HERE.

photo by Teddie Taylor

As AMENRA, CAVE IN, and MARISSA NADLER continue to promote their work on the Songs Of Townes Van Zandt Vol. III LP, Cvlt Nation is hosting a premiere and feature on CAVE IN with a new video for their cover of “The Hole.”

Beloved American singer-songwriter Townes Van Zandt passed away at the age of 52 on January 1st, 1997, in Mount Juliet, Tennessee. His music touches people. Many believe he was a genius, and sing his sad, brilliant songs. Imagine if he was still creating music, in a time when artists themselves decide what to release and when to do it – something that songwriters of his era often were unable to do.

In 2012, the label My Proud Mountain was established specifically for the purpose or releasing the first Songs Of Townes Van Zandt LP, to which the singers and guitarists of the band Neurosis – Scott Kelly and Steve Von Till – and Saint Vitus/The Obsessed’s Scott “Wino” Weinrich contributed nine Van Zandt songs. The goal was to introduce these brilliant works to fans who may have never heard the originals, but through the interpretation of the songs through the mentioned musicians, would lead them to do so.

In 2014, Songs Of Townes Van Zandt Vol. II carried on the tradition, this time featuring songs from John Baizley of Baroness, Nate Hall of US Christmas, and Mike Scheidt of Yob.

And now, 2022 sees Songs Of Townes Van Zandt Vol. III seeing release, featuring new renditions of nine classic tracks as interpreted by AMENRA, CAVE IN, and MARISSA NADLER.

CAVE IN’s cover of “The Hole” is delivered through a gloomy video created by Chariot Of Black Moth, premiered through Cvlt Nation alongside an interview with Stephen Brodsky, the feature stating in part, “CAVE IN has me reminiscing about all of the moments in my life where I found myself at the edge of a dark pit, and walking away—and how many times I jumped in, finding myself desperately clawing my way out of my circumstances. Their cover of Townes Van Zandt’s ‘The Hole’ is chilling, harrowing, and ominous, just as Townes intended it.”

Watch CAVE IN’s video for their cover of Townes Van Zandt’s “The Hole” and check out the Cvlt Nation feature at THIS LOCATION.

Following its recent physical release, Songs Of Townes Van Zandt Vol. III is now available on all streaming and digital services. Find the LP on multiple variants and on CD in North America through Neurot Recordings at THIS LOCATION, and digitally through Bandcamp HERE and all other DSPs HERE. The record is handled outside of North America by My Proud Mountain.

Songs Of Townes Van Zandt Vol. III Track Listing:
1. Marissa Nadler – Quicksilver Daydreams Of Maria
2. Amenra – Black Crow Blues
3. Cave In – Nothin’
4. Amenra – Kathleen
5. Cave In – The Hole
6. Amenra – Flyin’ Shoes
7. Marissa Nadler – Sad Cinderella
8. Cave In – At My Window
9. Marissa Nadler – None But The Rain

Toy Review: Playmobil “The A-Team” Van & Figures

“The A-Team”

A-Team Van/Figure Set


Our Score 4 out of 5 stars

“If you have a problem, if no one else can help” Playmobil has you covered with the debut of the A-Team Van/Figure set. Pulled from the iconic 80’s television series and delivered straight to your playroom the newest edition to the Playmobil brand comes complete with the team’s signature black and red GMC van, numerous accessories and of course Hannibal, Face, B.A. and Murdock figures.

Having been a huge fan of “The A-Team” growing up upon hearing of this release I was anxious to share my love for the series with my son who has become a fan of all things 80’s and 90’s. After giving him the backstory on the show and answering a slew of questions about each character we popped open the packaging with equal excitement. Before really digging into the assembly process, I had to appreciate the internal packaging which features a fiery insert showcasing the van along with each character which is housed above and denoted by name. From a collector standpoint this makes for a very cool display option. Assembly was pretty straight forward and compared to some other recent Playmobil releases was minimal as was the stickering process. As a parent the quick setup time was a major plus as if you have been in the situation where a toy requires extensive assembly you know how daunting an anxious child wanted to play with that new toy can be.

Once the van had its tires and signature red spoked wheels attached, we loaded up the vehicle through the three opening (rear doors, side door, removable roof) with the included assortment of accessories consisting of a multi piece tool kit, removable welding unit and various other mission-based items (binoculars, walkie talkies, flashlight). However before hitting the rode we had to do some outfitting of the included characters each of which conjured up memorable lines or moments from the show which had since been buried deep within my memory. Hannibal don’s his signature blue shirt/tan p-coat combo topped off with wispy white hair while Face remains dapper as always sporting an ascot and pocket square. B.A. comes decked out with his signature beard an mohawk while dressed in his trademark cut off vest and is adorned with multiple gold chains and bracelets. Last but not least and easily my favorite is “Howlin” Mad Murdock who is fitted with his blue ball cap and leather wolf bomber jacket. With a nod to Season 2 the figures has a “Bring Back the Dodo” shirt and also includes Murdock’s sock puppet sidekick “Socki the Talking Dog”. Yes, you might have some odd looks and additional questions as to why this guy thinks his sock is a talking dog but, that only adds to the fun and interaction between you and you loved ones as you play with these great toys.

Playmobil continues to raise the bar within the play/collector market and the “The A-Team” release is no different. From its colorful display packaging to the quality made toys inside you can be sure that if it says Playmobil you are going to get a quality product. Missing from this release however were lighting and/or sound features. Unlike previous release such as “Star Trek”, “Ghostbusters” and “Back to the Future” which all featured one or both details sadly “The A-Team” did not get this level of treatment. Don’t get me wrong this is still a great addition to any Playmobil or “A-Team” fan, but I can only imagine how much fun it would have been for the van to play the show’s theme song or to have some of those vintage explosion noises synonymous with each episode available at the push of a button. We pity the fool who hasn’t already gone out and grabbed themselves one of these great play vehicles.


Brand New Single, “Age of Machine,” Is Released Today

After three years, one-million concert tickets sold across five continents, four consecutive #1 singles, a GRAMMY Award, and performances on “The Tonight Show” and “Saturday Night Live,” GRETA VAN FLEET is hurtling into the future with its second album, The Battle at Garden’s Gate due April 16, 2021 (Lava/Republic Records).  The album can be pre-ordered HERE.

A bold evolution from the band’s 2018 full-length debut Anthem of the Peaceful ArmyThe Battle At Garden’s Gate came together primarily on the road or while in the studio after the runaway success of 2017’s “Highway Tune” led to the band packing up, leaving home, and eagerly soaking up new experiences on an extended road trip around the world. Over the past three years, Greta Van Fleet – vocalist Josh Kiszka, guitarist Jake Kiszka, bassist Sam Kiszka, and drummer Danny Wagner – played to hundreds of thousands of people across North America, Europe, Japan, Australia, South America, New Zealand, and the UK.  While driving to gigs, the first-time world travelers passed many unfamiliar sights, from the favelas in Sao Paulo to the Gold Coast of Australia and everywhere in between, meeting and enjoying conversations with fans and other musicians that opened up new worlds to them.  

To cap off the change-filled era, the quartet moved from Michigan to Nashville, immersing themselves in Music City’s rich history.  The melding of all these experiences opened their eyes to amazing new worlds of culture, history, philosophy and spirituality – and ushered in an entirely new way of looking at life and the approach to their music.  Accordingly, Greta Van Fleet poured everything they experienced into these new songs – the music reflects their spiritual and intellectual growth, increased awareness of the inequalities plaguing the modern world, and deep empathy for what other people are going through.   

“We realized that while growing up, we had been shielded by many things, and we were unaware of a lot of things,” says drummer Danny Wagner.  “And then we were thrown out into this huge world, and it was a bit of a culture shock at first.  But as we started to travel a lot, meet new and different people and experience different cultures, our definition of ‘normal’ changed.” 

“I suppose that everything has changed except what got us here in the first place,” adds bassist Sam Kiszka.  “Everything – our perception of the world, perception of life itself, what it means to be an artist, what it means to be part of a beautiful, gorgeous society.  We’ve gained a larger understanding of why we’re all here.”

In general, the album’s arrangements are spacious and leisurely, giving the music pleasing dynamics, as the band touches on all manners of rock ‘n’ roll.  The Battle at Garden’s Gate is cinematic, capturing the breathtaking energy of an exciting fight scene or the smoldering passion of a brooding, heroic protagonist saving the day.  The new music also illustrates that the members of Greta Van Fleet are paving the way for a new generation of musicians – ones that use rock ‘n’ roll’s foundational elements to build an entirely new sonic blueprint. 

Sonically, The Battle at Garden’s Gate also feels bracingly modern, an embodiment of genre-blended musical freedom.  Recorded in Los Angeles with Greg Kurstin (Foo Fighters, Paul McCartney), the album is ambitious and expansive, marked by epic journeys such as the second single, “Age of Machine,” released today (check it out HERE), and the Top 5 rock hit “My Way, Soon,” which boasts a towering chorus hook and rip-it-up-and-start-again lyrics.

Josh explains, “It’s very dynamic, lyrically speaking.  And that’s the human experience.  It’s much more than pain or fear; it’s also beauty.  People need people, and love is important.”  Lyrically, The Battle at Garden’s Gate muses about the influence of technology on modern life; the role conflict plays in the global sphere; the deceptive fulfillment of tangible riches; and philosophical questions about life, love and power. 

“There was a lot of self-evolution happening during the writing of this album that was prompted by experiences I had, experiences we all had, so a lot of contemplation occurred,” Josh says, while Jake adds, “It’s reflecting a lot of the world that we’ve seen, and I think that it’s reflecting a lot of personal truth.  What Josh does very well with the lyrics is telling ancient tales with a contemporary application.” 

For Josh, working with Kurstin provided the confidence he needed to push his songwriting into these vivid dimensions.  “I’m always a little bit hesitant about my abilities as an artist; I think a lot of artists feel that way,” he says.  “But Greg hovering over me while I’m on the piano, taking an interest in what I was doing – that was really important for me.” 

That added confidence is obvious.  Josh sounds commanding on each song, stretching his already-acrobatic voice to newer heights, while the instrumentalists fearlessly push themselves into new territory.  Easy going organ and acoustic folk-rock riffs drive one song, while another ends in a torrent of guitar noise that rivals Neil Young’s onstage guitar freakouts with Crazy Horse.  “For all of us, the performances – and the aspects of them that are captured – preserve where we’re at musically in time right now,” Jake says.  

The future is unwritten, and the sky’s the limit for these curious travelers and truth-seekers. Josh says, “certainly after this, we’ve grown in so many ways.  This album has taught us a lot, about life in general, about ourselves, about all of us, about the world we live in.”


The Video for the Debut Single “Distance” – A Tribute to His Father and Guitar Icon Eddie Van Halen – Can Be Seen Here:

Proceeds from the sale of the single will benefit The Mr. Holland’s Opus Foundation

Everybody has a name they are born with. Having one of the most recognizable names in entertainment, Wolfgang Van Halen has been preparing to release music from his solo band Mammoth WVH for some time. That plan was altered when his father and guitar icon Eddie Van Halen called him and told him his cancer had returned. Wolfgang decided to put everything on hold to be with his father through his battle. During that time, Wolfgang was writing material for his upcoming solo album (available via Explorer1 Music Group/EX1 Records in 2021) for which the first single “Distance” would be born. The song is available via all digital service providers here:

“As my pop continued to struggle with various health issues, I was imagining what my life would be like without him and how terribly I’d miss him. While the song is incredibly personal, I think anyone can relate to the idea of having a profound loss in their life,” explains Wolfgang Van Halen. 

Writing the song and performing all of the instrumentation and vocals for Mammoth WVH, “Distance” is an open letter to his father – one Wolfgang was fortunate to play for his dad and would become a favorite of Eddie’s – declaring “no matter what the distance is, I will be with you.” The video for the song is created from a collection of family home movies through the years and offers an inside look in to one of music’s most notable personalities. Chronicling the family through the years, the video ends with a touching voicemail left from Eddie to his son. The video for “Distance” can be seen here:

“I never intended ‘Distance’ to be the very first piece of music people would hear from me, but I also thought my father would be here to celebrate its release. This is for him. I love and miss you, Pop.”

An organization that is very close to the Van Halen family is the Mr. Holland’s Opus Foundation. Eddie was very supportive of the organization via numerous donations throughout his lifetime. Following in his father’s footsteps in another way, Wolfgang is donating his portion of all proceeds from “Distance” to the foundation. 

“Our connection with Eddie grew out of his generous nature, his delight in seeing kids learn and play music, and ultimately understanding what’s important in life. Eddie lived out loud through his music, and I believe that he wanted to see that kind of expression ignite in the students. Music saved him and he loved giving back through what we do for kids through the power of music. Thank you, Eddie. We’ll never forget you.” – Felice Mancini, the President and CEO of The Mr. Holland’s Opus Foundation

Legendary guitarist and co-founder of Van Halen, Eddie Van Halen has died after a long battle with throat cancer .

It was said that in the last 72 hours Eddie’s ongoing health battle went massively downhill — doctors discovered his throat cancer had moved to his brain as well as other organs.

Eddie has been battling cancer for well over a decade. Our sources say he’s been in and out of the hospital over the past year — including last November for intestinal issues and recently underwent a round of chemo. Though he was a heavy smoker for years, he believes he developed throat cancer from a metal guitar pick he used to frequently hold in his mouth more than 20 years ago. Nevertheless, he continued to attend concerts and rehearse music with his son, Wolfgang, who became Van Halen’s bassist in 2006.

Eddie formed the classic rock group in Pasadena in 1972 with his brother, Alec, on drums, Michael Anthony on bass and David Lee Roth singing. Eddie served as the main songwriter on their self-titled debut album in 1978 which launched the group into rock superstardom in the ’80s. Van Halen was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 2007, and Eddie is widely considered one the greatest guitar players of all time.

Eddie Van Halen Introduces 1978 High Tops

Eddie Van Halen Introduces 1978 High Tops
Commemorating Van Halen’s Iconic Debut Album

Eddie Van Halen store has released a commemorative shoe, the 1978 High Top, honoring the occasion of Eddie’s groundbreaking debut to the world stage with the release of the first Van Halen album, some 40 years ago. Adding to the growing collection of footwear offered by the EVH™ brand, the 1978 High Tops are a black and white classic high-top sneaker. The outer side features a live photo of Eddie Van Halen playing guitar on the first world tour, and the inner side of the shoe has 1978 prominently displayed in a circular badge. The Eddie Van Halen logo appears on both the tongue of the shoe and on the back sole, and the back panel features his signature white with black striped pattern.

The 1978 High Tops and additional apparel/merchandise can be purchased at:

Greta Van Fleet Guitarist Jake Kiszka Talks About the Bands New EP “From the Fires”

Greta Van Fleet burst onto the rock music scene in early 2017 with their debut EP titled “Black Smoke Rising”. By September the track “Highway Tune” was topping the Billboard charts. To capitalize on this momentum the band has released a second EP titled “From the Fires”. Media Mikes had the chance recently to speak with the bands guitarist Jake Kiszka about the bands new EP, their recent tour with Halestorm and the bands plans for 2018.

Adam Lawton: Can you give us some back ground on Greta Van Fleet and possibly tell us some of your influences?

Jake Kiszka: With Josh, Sam and I being brothers our influences are very similar. We were exposed to music at a very early age. I remember going on trips and listening to bands like The Allman Brothers. We had access to the same vinyl collection so I think that had a lot to do with what we are doing now. Danny also was in to a lot of the same music. Around the time I got into high school I started bringing friends over to jam and eventually Josh would start coming out and singing then a little later Sam started coming out and playing bass. A short time after all that happened Danny started coming over and was basically the last piece of the puzzle.

AL: Can you tell us about the bands new double EP “From the Fires”?

JK: We had put out “Black Smoke Rising” and we still had a bunch of songs that we had either written or recorded so to showcase some other elements of our playing we dipped into those songs. We also wanted to cover some material from a one of our influences Sam Cooke. We had those songs and some live tracks that we picked from for this release.

AL: How does your work on this release compare to that of your debut EP?

JK: The first EP was a spread of songs we had written over the course of five years. “Highway Tune” was actually the first song we had ever written followed by “Safari Song” about a year later. “Flower Power” was another song that was written about two years into the group’s existence and “Black Smoke Rising” was written right before we were set to go in to the studio and record.

AL: What type of process does the band have for song writing?

JK: We write in a lot of different ways. A lot of times one of us will bring something to the table and then we all decide if it is something we want to work on. That’s when the four of us really start to contribute to making one piece of music. We all bring things in to the writing process so it tends to vary.

AL: You guys just wrapped up a tour with Halestorm. Can you tell us about that experience?

JK: It was fantastic! Seeing people singing our songs and just rocking out was really great. I don’t think that was something any of us really expected as our sound is a bit different. The whole experience of that night after night was shocking and humbling.

AL: You guys have a string of sold out shows lined up through December. Can you tell us your thoughts on that?

JK: That’s another thing that was not expected. We really didn’t figure all those shows would sell out so quickly. It’s going to be a great thing that takes us right up until the holidays and then after that we plan to head into the studio in January to record our first full length album.

AL: What can we be expecting from that new album?

JK: The album will probably be another spread of both newer and older material that we have written at different points in time. We hope to have the album done early to mid 2018. With everything that has happened for us this past year we have gained some resources that will help us take things further with this new album. We will be looking to hit bigger venues and festivals as well as hitting some new countries also.

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Win a Special 20 Episode DVD of “The Dick Van Dyke Show” [ENDED]

It’s one of the greatest television series of all time, introducing viewers to Rob Petrie, his lovely wife, Laura, and the whole gang from “The Alan Brady Show.” Now Media Mikes has teamed up with Image Entertainment, an RLJ Entertainment brand, to give (2) lucky readers a copy of the new compilation DVD release of “The Dick Van Dyke Show: Classic Mary Tyler Moore Episodes.”

The DVD contains 20 full length and unforgettable episodes featuring television icon Mary Tyler Moore.
Sit back, relax, and get ready to laugh as you join lovely Laura Petrie (Moore) and her husband Rob (Dick Van Dyke) in Carl Reiner’s groundbreaking, Emmy Award-winning series, consistently ranked among the top television sitcoms of all-time. This time, it’s all about Mary!

Episodes include must-see favorites Never Bathe on Saturday (Laura gets her toe caught in a bath spout), Coast to Coast Big Mouth (Laura blurts out a big secret on national TV), My Blonde-Haired Brunette (an insecure Laura disastrously dyes her hair), and many more timeless classics.

Complete Episode Listing:
• Oh How We Met the Night That We Danced
• My Blonde-Haired Brunette
• The Curious Thing About Women
• The Two Faces of Rob
• My Husband Is a Check-Grabber
• Ray Murdock’s X-Ray
• Laura’s Little Lie
• Very Old Shoes, Very Old Rice
• The Life and Love of Joe Coogan
• My Part-Time Wife
• October Eve
• Teacher’s Petrie
• My Mother Can Beat Up My Father
• Pink Pills and Purple Patients
• Never Bathe on Saturday
• Show of Hands
• Coast to Coast Big Mouth
• See Rob Write, Write, Rob, Write
• The Curse of the Petrie People
• Long Night’s Journey into Day

Special Features Include:

Audio commentaries with Carl Reiner and Dick Van Dyke on select episodes
Remembering “Oh, Rob!”
Original Commercials

All you have to do is register below and let us know which “Classic TV” show (1975 and before)
you’d like to see released on DVD. Two random readers will be chosen and will be notified by
email. This contest is open through noon on Sunday, April 20, 2014. Good luck!


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Blu-ray Review “The Dick Van Dyke Show: The Complete Fifth Season”

Actors: Dick Van Dyke, Mary Tyler Moore, Rose Marie, Morey Amsterdam, Carl Reiner
Directors: Jerry Paris
Number of discs: 3
Rated: Unrated
Release Date: August 6, 2013
Run Time: 775 minutes

Season: 5 out of 5 stars
Extras: 4 out of 5 stars

Well this is it kids, the final season of one of my favorite shows that has ever graced television. Even though it is has been off the air for almost 50 years, I am going to miss this show. Thankfully Image Entertainment has delivered each wonderful season on Blu-ray. I have absolutely loved reviewing these releases over the last few months. I am looking forward to though to revisiting this series quite often with my wife and daughter, especially as she grows. It is one of those shows that never gets old and better each time you watch. The characters in this show are just so much fun and you really get to see them grow along with the show through its five seasons. Do not miss this release!

Official Premise: Don’t miss the fun in this final season of the multiple Emmy Award-winning DICK VAN DYKE SHOW. Generation after generation of TV viewers have fallen in love with this timeless classic! For laugh after laugh, join one of TV’s best-loved couples, Dick Van Dyke as Rob Petrie and Mary Tyler Moore as his wife Laura, along with Rob’s temperamental boss, Carl Reiner as Alan Brady, and his kooky co-workers, Morey Amsterdam as Buddy Sorrell and Rose Marie as Sally Rogers. Now see all 31 season episodes (airing 1965-1966), exquisitely remastered in their original full-length versions. Catch such classics as Laura blurting out Alan Brady’s big secret on national TV in Coast-to-Coast Big Mouth; mild-mannered Mel Cooley finally standing up to the boss in The Bottom of Mel Cooley’s Heart; and Alan Brady attempting to turn the Petries’ anniversary party into a self-serving documentary in A Day in the Life of Alan Brady.

Like the past four seasons before, Image has continued to deliver wonderful quality releases for this amazing show. These episodes have been released on Blu-ray with all-new scans from the camera negatives. The 1080p transfer looks, honestly not short of stunning for a show of it’s age. Each episode come with an original DTS-HD MA 1.0 audio track, which works for the show and its comedy. The episodes were mostly taped with a studio audience and the laughing is balanced well with the snappy jokes and sharp dialogue. You will not be let down with this amazing audio and video presentations.

There are some new Blu-ray exclusive special features included on this release. There is “TV Academy Tribute to Carl” with Garry Shandling. After that there are a few promos collection including “My Blonde-Haired Brunette” and a two packages with some great memories shared with the fans past and present. The rest of the season features are roll-overs from past DVD releases but are still fantastic. There are commentary tracks from Carl Reiner and Dick Van Dyke on episode 128 (Coast-to-Coast Big Mouth) and Episode 158 (The Gunslinger). Also Rose Marie, Larry Matthew and Bill Idelson lend their commentary to Episode 148 (Dear Sally Rogers). There are “Episode Photos” throughout all three discs for episodes 18 out of the 31 episodes.

Other extras include featurettes on disc 1: “Remembering 4½ and The Alan Brady Show Goes to Jail” and “Remembering Coast-to-Coast Big Mouth (episode 128)”, which look back at those episodes and their characters. Also there is the Emmy Awards® (1965-1966) Outstanding Comedy Series. Disc 2 also contains a look into the Emmy Awards® (1965-1966) Outstanding Continued Performance by an Actor/Actress in a Leading Role in a Comedy Series. It has two more recent features including “Comic Relief (1992)” and “TV Land Awards (2003)”. There are some Nick at Nite Promos. Lastly there are “Remembering Richard Deacon (episode 146)” and “Remembering Sally (episode 148)”.

Wrapping up the extras for not only the fifth season but the series in general are on a packed third disc. First we get three featurettes “Remembering Buddy’s Bar Mitzvah (episode 149)” and “Remembering The Gunslinger (episode 158)”. There is another feature called “Dick Van Dyke and the Other Woman: If Men Could Cry”. Lastly there is a “TV Land Promo for The Dick Van Dyke Show”, a Theatrical Trailer for The Art of Love and a preview for “The New Dick Van Dyke Show”.


Blu-ray Review “The Dick Van Dyke Show: The Complete Fourth Season”

Actors: Dick Van Dyke, Mary Tyler Moore, Rose Marie, Morey Amsterdam, Carl Reiner
Directors: Jerry Paris
Number of discs: 3
Rated: Unrated
Release Date: July 2, 2013
Run Time: 800 minutes

Season: 5 out of 5 stars
Extras: 4 out of 5 stars

Season four of “The Dick Van Dyke” show continues to deliver with the laughter and great jokes.  It is one of my favorite seasons, as it introduced a new twist to the show having Alan Brady finally stepping out from being an off-screen character and getting a face. He was played by none other than the show’s own creator Carl Reiner. Reiner really makes this character one of my favorites from the show and adds a whole new dynamic for the series. If you are fan of this show Image delivers again with another successfully season release. I am sad to think that this series will be completed when season five is released in August 2013. Hopefully they have the rights to the “The Mary Tyler Moore Show” next. 😉

Official Premise: Join one of TV’s funniest couples as they tackle life in the suburbs and work in the big city. Dick Van Dyke is hilarious as Rob Petrie, the wacky comedy writer, and Mary Tyler Moore is the sexiest, nuttiest wife in New Rochelle. Add to that magic combination the talents of Carl Reiner, Morey Amsterdam, Rose Marie and Richard Deacon, and you’ve got one of the most popular sitcoms ever – the winner of 15 Emmy Awards! Now you can enjoy the complete fourth season (airing 1964-1965), all 32 episodes in their entirety! Be there as Laura gets her toe caught in a bath spout in the unforgettable Never Bathe on a Saturday, a sleep-deprived Rob tries to stay awake during his job interview with Alan Brady in 100 Terrible Hours and Don Rickles is a klutzy thief who tries to rob the Petries in a stalled elevator in 4 1/2, then enlists them to entertain in The Alan Brady Show Goes to Jail.

With each passing season, I never cease to be impressed with that love that Image has given this show. These episodes have been released on Blu-ray with all-new scans from the camera negatives. The 1080p transfer looks, honestly not short of stunning for a show of it’s age. Each episode come with an original DTS-HD MA 1.0 audio track, which works for the show and its comedy. The episodes were mostly taped with a studio audience and the laughing is balanced well with the snappy jokes and sharp dialogue. You will not be let down with this amazing audio and video presentations.

There are some new Blu-ray exclusive special features. There is “Mary on The Danny Thomas Show” in which she tells the story of how she came to be cast as Laura Petrie. There are three separate “TV Academy Tribute to Carl Reiner” included as well. The first is from Dick Van Dyke, who tells him stories about their collaboration. The next one is from Ray Romano and Brad Garrett and the last one is from Rose Marie, Larry Matthews and Bill Persky, which is my personal favorite of the three. Rose Marie just cracks me up!

The rest of the season features are roll-overs from past DVD releases but are still fantastic. There are commentary tracks from Carl Reiner and Dick Van Dyke on episodes 121 (Never Bathe on Saturday) and episode 124 (Baby Fat). Also on episode 124, there is a track from Garry Marshall. All great commentary tracks for sure, a lot of fun! These guys really loved what they did and it sure does show! There are “Episode Photos” throughout all three discs for episodes 30 out of the 32 episodes, amazing!

Other extras include featurettes on disc 1: “Remembering Don Rickles” (episode 102) and “Remembering the Pink Pills” (episode 106), which look back at those episodes and their characters. Also there is a clip from the Animated Program “The Alan Brady Show” (episode 103). Disc 2 contains more featurettes on including “DVD Exclusive Awards: The Dick Van Dyke Show: Season One (Best Overall DVD, TV Program)”, “Diagnosis Murder: Dr. Mark Sloan Meets Rob Petrie” and “Dick Sings the Theme Song at the Hollywood Bowl (2001)”.

The third disc actually has the most extras listed for the season. First we get three featurettes “Remembering Never Bathe on Saturday” (episode 121), “Remembering Baby Fat” (episode 124) and “Remembering the Motorcyle” (episode 125) look back at these amazing episodes. There is a look back at the show in “The Dick Van Dyke Show Remembered”. Lastly there is a piece from “Emmy Awards® (1964-1965) Outstanding Program Achievement in Entertainment” and some extras “Nick at Nite Promos” included.

Blu-ray Review “The Dick Van Dyke Show: The Complete Third Season”

Actors: Dick Van Dyke, Mary Tyler Moore, Rose Marie, Morey Amsterdam, Carl Reiner
Directors: Jerry Paris, John Rich
Number of discs: 3
Rated: G (General Audience)
Release Date: June 11, 2013
Run Time: 811 minutes

Season: 5 out of 5 stars
Extras: 4 out of 5 stars

I do not think that there could be such a thing as watching too much “The Dick Van Dyke Show”.  As these seasons are being released on Blu-ray, I find myself re-watching past seasons just to fill the gap in between. Even my wife now has become a fan finding the show like myself post airing. Image Entertainment is behind these and they have done such a wonderful job.  This season is first without Carl Reiner taking point in the writing department.  It still is exceptional funny, especially with the episode “That’s My Boy??”. With only two more seasons to go after this, I am going to be upset when the series is completed.  Can I suggest “The Mary Tyler Moore Show” next for them to release as a series? Hint Hint!

Official Premise: Pratfall-prone Rob Petrie (Dick Van Dyke) and his plucky wife Laura (Mary Tyler Moore), along with wisecracking co-workers Sally (Rose Marie) and Buddy (Morey Amsterdam), captured America’s hearts in this TV favorite that irresistibly combined wit and slapstick. The third season, which earned the series’ highest ratings, opened with the landmark That’s My Boy?? about Rob’s fear that he’s brought the wrong baby home from hospital, getting the longest studio audience laughs in the show’s history. Also among the season’s 32 original full length episodes (airing 1963-1964) included in this set are the hilarious October Eve with Laura is mortified when a nude portrait of her surfaces in a New York gallery and Big Max Calvada in which a gangster muscles Rob, Buddy and Sally into writing a comedy routine for his nephew.

Like the past three seasons, Image Entertainment has consistently delivers wonderful presentations for this show (and many others as well).  These episodes are brought to us on Blu-ray with all-new scans from the camera negatives. The 1080p transfer just look stunning. The original source elements have held up very well and really don’t show their age at all. The DTS-HD MA 1.0 audio track is a simple soundtrack for a simple show. There not much needed here this show and it works perfectly. The episodes were mostly taped with a studio audience and the laughing is balanced well with the snappy jokes and dialogue.

There are some new Blu-ray exclusive special features. Including “Mary on The Danny Kaye Show”, which if you a nice switch since on Season 2, we had Dick on that show. Decent but Dick’s appearance takes the cake for being slightly more entertaining. “TV Academy Tribute to Carl with Steve Martin and George Clooney” it is a nice ode to the man behind this great show. Martin gives tribute and Clooney does the awarding. The rest of the season features are roll-overs from past DVD releases but are still fantastic. There are commentary tracks from Carl Reiner and Dick Van Dyke on episode 64 (That’s My Boy??) and episode 90 (October Eve). There are “Episode Photos” throughout all three discs for episodes 18 out of the 32 episodes. There are also commercials/promos on episode 64, 66, 80 and others for Nick at Nite.

Other extras include featurettes on disc 1: “Remembering the Sheldon Leonard”, “Remembering Rob and Laura”, “Remembering Buddy and Sally”, “Remembering That’s My Boy??” (episode 64), “Remembering the Betty Lou” (episode 72), which look back at these episodes and the characters. Also there is “Sheldon on the Role of Executive Producer”. Disc 2 contains featurettes on “Remembering Joe Coogan” (episode 80). There is a also a featurette “The Cast Plays Stump the Stars” and Rehearsal footage from “A Day in the Life of Sheldon Leonard”. Lastly disc three has one more featurette: for “Remembering Alan Brady” (episode 86) and “Remembering October Eve” (episode 90). Also there is a look into the show’s Emmy Awards® (1963-1964) and “Dick and Mary on Van Dyke & Company” included.

Blu-ray Review “The Dick Van Dyke Show: The Complete Second Season”

Actors: Dick Van Dyke, Mary Tyler Moore, Rose Marie, Morey Amsterdam, Carl Reiner
Directors: Alan Rafkin, Jerry Paris, John Rich
Number of discs: 3
Rated: Unrated
Release Date: May 7, 2013
Run Time: 800 minutes

Season: 5 out of 5 stars
Extras: 4 out of 5 stars

I think I can literally watch “The Dick Van Dyke Show” every single day for the rest of my life…over and over. This show makes me laugh consistently every time it is on. Image released The Complete Series on Blu-ray for “The Dick Van Dyke Show” last November and it was such a wonderful job for a show that is now over 50 years old. Since then they have been releasing each season, which has been a great way for fans to grab their favorite episodes without needing the whole series. Season two is where this show really gets its legs and deliver some of the best episodes including “The Attempted Marriage” and “It May Look Like a Walnut”. It is also the last season before Carl Reiner stepped back mostly from the writers chair. If you are a fan of the show this is a must purchase and a really Blu-ray treat, thanks to Image Entertainment.

Official Premise: “The Dick Van Dyke Show” truly found its niche in its second season, rapidly climbing to ninth place in the Nielson ratings. Millions across the country tuned in weekly for the fun with comedy writer Rob Petrie (Dick Van Dyke) on the job with his wisecracking co-workers (Morey Amsterdam, Rose Marie) and at home with his lovely wife, Laura (Mary Tyler Moore). Now enjoy all 33 of the season’s hilarious episodes in spectacular high-definition!

Image has given a lot of love to this show and has released this episode on Blu-ray with all-new scans from the camera negatives. The 1080p transfer just look stunning. The original source elements have held up very well and really don’t show their age at all. I have been films shot today, released on Blu-ray and look 10 times worse than this 50 year old show does. The DTS-HD MA 1.0 audio track is a simple soundtrack for a simple show. There not much needed here this show and it works perfectly. The episodes were mostly taped with a studio audience and the laughing is balanced well with the snappy jokes and dialogue.

There are some new Blu-ray exclusive special features. First, we have an Anti-Smoking PSA Radio Spot featuring Dick Van Dyke, “Kick the Habit”. Always interesting to see these old spots especially since the show was sponsored by cigarette companies. “It May Look Like a Walnut” Color Test is was trial on bringing color to one of the show most famous episodes. “Safety Council Reel” is a bunch of PSAs on safe driving. Lastly there is Dick Van Dyke’s appearance on “The Danny Kaye Show”. It is a must watch for any fan of either actor.

The rest of the season features are roll-overs from past DVD releases but are still fantastic. There are commentary tracks from Carl Reiner and Dick Van Dyke on episodes 34 (The Attempted Marriage) and episode 37 (My Husband Is Not a Drunk). There are also tracks on Episode 41 (A Bird in the Head Hurts) and Episode 53 (All About Eavesdropping) with Rose Marie, Larry Mathews and Ann Morgan Guilbert. There are “Episode Photos” throughout all three discs for episodes 27 out of the 33 episodes. There are also commercials/promos included on 21 episodes for product including Dash, Joy and Kent cigarettes.

Other extras include featurettes on disc 1: “Remembering the Ottoman”, “Remembering Rob and Laura”, “Remembering Buddy and Sally”, “Remembering the Bank Book” (about episode 33), “Remembering the Woodpecker” (episode 41), which look back at these episodes and the characters. Also there is a look into the show’s Emmy Awards® (1962-1963). Disc 2 contains more featurettes on “Remembering Dick’s Sneezing (episode 42)” and “Remembering Jerry Paris (episode 43)”. There is a also the making of one of my favorite episodes “It May Look Like a Walnut (episode 51)”. Lastly disc three has one more featurette: for “Remembering “Oh, Rob”.


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Blu-ray Review "The Dick Van Dyke Show: The Complete First Season"

Actors: Dick Van Dyke, Mary Tyler Moore, Rose Marie, Morey Amsterdam
Directors: John Rich, Robert Butler, Sheldon Leonard
Number of discs: 3
Rated: Unrated
Release Date: April 9, 2013
Run Time: 750 minutes

Season: 5 out of 5 stars
Extras: 3.5 out of 5 stars

There is just something about classic 60’s television. I actually miss it quite a bit. Today when you turn on the television it is all reality TV shows and trash. I really love escaping into the world when in order to be on television you needed to have talent. Dick Van Dyke and Mary Tyler Moore are two of the funniest people in the business. Rose Marie and Morey Amsterdam are also fantastic compliments to the two leads. The humor is very funny and clean family fun. It is also very timeless. It has been over 50 years since this show aired and I still laugh out loud many times during each episode. Image Entertainment is the leader of bringing these great shows to Blu-ray with great shows like “The Twilight Zone”. This is not the first rodeo on Blu-ray for “The Dick Van Dyke Show”. Image released the complete series last year. This is the first time though that the individual seasons are being released. If you are a fan of this show this release is a must have! Relive the classics again!

Official Premise: Trip into the living room of comedy writer Rob Petrie (Dick Van Dyke) along with his lovely wife, Laura (Mary Tyler Moore), wisecracking co-workers and nutty neighbors. Winner of 15 Emmy Awards, this groundbreaking series is consistently ranked among the top TV comedies of all-time and renowned for its top-notch cast and stellar writing. Now enjoy the first season’s entire 30 episodes (air 1961-1962), each digitally remastered to its original full-length version. Get ready to laugh out loud with such classics as Rob and Laura balancing a career-building cocktail party with caring for a sickly son in the series’ first episode, The Sick Boy and the Sitter; then in My Blonde-Haired Brunette and insecure Laura disastrously dyes her hair; and Rob’s shy brother (Jerry Van Dyke) is a sleepwalking Jekyll and Hyde in the hilarious two-parter I am My Brother’s Keeper/The Sleeping Brother.

Image Entertainment does nothing of short of delivering “The Dick Van Dyke Show” looking better than it ever has on Blu-ray. The 1960’s black-and-white television show looks honestly stunning on high definition. For the Blu-ray, Image delivered each episode’s 1080p transfer with new scans from the camera negatives. You can tell that there is a lot of love for a show like this. Also for a show that is over 50 years old, you could have easily fooled me. There is no issue at all with the DTS-HD MA 1.0 audio track. The show doesn’t really need much in order for it to succeed well. The track is perfect for the show’s dialogue, the music and laugh-track.

The special features are very impressive for this release (and mirror last year’s complete series release). There is audio commentaries track with Carl Reiner and Dick Van Dyke on the following episodes 19: “Where Did I Come From?” and episode 29: “The Sleeping Brother”. I love the chemistry between both of these guys and they are a riot. I would have loved to see them cover each episode but that is not practical. There is the Original Series Pilot Episode, “Head of the Family”, which is a riot. There are interviews with various members of the cast and directors from the show. There are Emmy Award Telecast Clips Honoring “The Dick Van Dyke Show” and also Original Commercials with the Cast and Network Promos. Lastly there are Photo Galleries for the 16 out of the 30 episodes. Can’t wait for the the rest of the seasons being released. Keep them coming Image Entertainment!

Casper Van Dien talks about role in "Noobz" and "Mortal Kombat Legacy 2"

Casper Van Dien is known best for his role of Johnny Rico in “Starship Troopers”.  He recently steals the show in the new gaming film “Noobz”, where he plays a comedic version of himself.  Great movie, check it out! He also takes over the role of Johnny Cage in season two of “Mortal Kombat Legacy”. Media Mikes had a chance to chat with Casper on these roles and what we can expect.

Mike Gencarelli: Tell us how you got involved playing yourself in “Noobz”?
Casper Van Dien: I met Blake (Freeman) a couple years before and we hit it off. He told me he wanted to right me into one of his movies. So one day he calls me up and asked me to do a cameo in this gaming movie he was making. He told me he wanted me to just play myself. So I read it and I thought this is a friend of mine and this is what he thinks about me [laughs]. See the movie to understand why. I really think I need to get therapy and look into it if this is the way my friend sees me as. [laughs]. But I agreed and it was really fun.

MG: It’s not always easy play yourself [laughs].
CVD: I had to go to my acting coach cause I was afraid they might recast me [laughs]. I was warned several times but I guess my performance was good enough since they kept me on.  So I guess I lucked out.

MG: Are you a gamer yourself?
CVD: I think I used to consider myself a gamer until I met Blake and his friends. When I go over to hang out and talk shop, Blake and all his friends/business people are all playing online video game tournaments. We will do the meetings while they are playing. So I realized there is a difference between gamers and people that play video games. I also got to meet some of the really serious gamers that we had on “Noobz” with us that actually get paid for this. Robert Paz was in it and he became a friend of mine too. Those guys really know how to play video games and it is a art form to them. But overall, I have always loved video games and have since I was a little kid.

MG: Do you plan on working with Blake again?
CVD: I also just did another movie with him called “Mucho Dinero”. It stars Blake, Eddie Griffin and myself. That one he wanted me to play someone completely different than in “Noobz”. Funny story though, one of the grips came up to me during filming and he said “You ruined ‘Starship Troops’ for me, I’ll never be able to watch it again” and walked away. I am not doing to give details, you have to see it to find out why. I don’t know man, I am either doing something really right or I am really screwing up [laughs]. I am thrilled to be working with Blake again. He is a good pal and I love his awful sense of humor about me and life in general.

MG: Tell us about playing such an iconic character like Johnny Cage in “Mortal Kombat: Legacy”?
CVD: Yep, I just got to Johnny Cage in Kevin Tancharoen’s web series. There are several episodes this year that he is in. I think that Matt Mullins did a great job in the first season. I think he softened it up for me to do more as well. I don’t know what they are trying to say though, since Johnny Cage is a D-list actor, has a bit of an attiude and is a little conceded. So I am not sure why they wanted me and told me that I was perfect for it [laughs]. I had a blast doing this though. There are a lot of incredible marital artists. I fight a lot but nothing like these guys. Another thing is that my character gets into a girl fight. Johnny Cage in a girl fight. You have to see it man, it is very cool!

MG: Any plans you will be involved with the upcoming feature film also?
CVD: You know I would love to be involved. It is up to the director. If he wants me then I would love to do it. If he wants to do something else, either way I will fully support it. I appreciate him wanting me in the web-series in the first place. I had a blast. So we will see what will happen.

MG: It’s been over 15 years since “Starship Troopers”; yet the series is still very alive with “Starship Troopers: Invasion”, which your executive produced. Why do you think this franchise resonates with fans?
CVD: I get more tweets every day with quotes from that film on my Twitter page. I get dozens every day and then when it airs I get hundreds a day. It is just unbelievable how much fans love this movie. It is awesome to have been involved with a film that people quote you from. The film just has some many awesome quotes. Ed Neumeier is an incredible writer. Paul Verhoeven is an amazing director. This film has just had such an amazing life and so many fans.

MG: I love how active you are on Twitter and interacting with your fans.
CVD: Yeah, I love it. I wasn’t announcing that I was playing Johnny Cage because I was asked not to. But one day I went on Twitter and someone wrote “Fucking Johnny Rico is Fucking Johnny Cage. Fucking Awesome”. It was one of the coolest tweets I got last year. I was super excited by that and that is how I found that Warner Bros had released the news.

MG: What else do you have planned for 2013?
CVD: Well like I said I got the movie “Mucho Dinero”. It was a fun film to shoot and it is really funny as well. Blake wrote, produced and directed this one as well. I am going to shoot a film this weekend in Oklahoma, which is another action/thriller. I shot a Hallmark Christmas movie last year that that did really well called “Baby’s First Christmas”, so that was really cool. I have been doing this for 25 years and it just keeps getting better and better!

Travis Van Winkle talks about new film 247°F

Travis Van Winkle is the co-star in the new horror/thriller “247°F” with Tyler Mane and Scout Taylor-Compton. Travis is also known for his work in “Transformers” and “Friday the 13th” remake. Media Mikes had a chance to chat with Travis about his new movie and also got a tip on his new pilot with Michael Bay called “The Last Ship”.

Mike Gencarelli: Can you tell us how you got involved with “247°F”?
Travis Van Winkle: I got a call one day from the casting director to see if I wanted to fly to Georgia. I think one of their guys had fallen out and my friend Michael Copon who is also in the film mentioned my name. They looked at my stuff and I got a call the next day

MG: What was it about the role that made you want to get involved?
TVW: As soon as I found out what it was about I figured I could handle sitting in a sauna for 3 weeks with pretty women in their underwear.

MG: How was it working with Tyler Mane and Scout Taylor-Compton?
TVW: It was great! They are great people. It’s really nice to work on a project with great actors. Those guys are wonderful human beings.

MG: Do you have any stories from shooting?
TVW: I remember sitting in a room that was not hot. It was just a stale cold room. Before each take they would spray us with baby oil and cold water. That didn’t really help us with the scene where we were supposed to appear hot. The physicality that happened in there was pretty intense. There was glass that would not break, I slammed my finger at one point and then I had to lift that furnace. Those scenes are fun as an actor. I told the director I was going big and if he had to bring me down he could.

MG: What do you enjoy most about working in the horror genre?
TVW: We all feel pain however in real life you don’t get the chance to go to extremes where your thrown on a hay bale spike or pick up a hot furnace. We don’t get a chance to do a lot of these intense things. To be able to create and do these types of things is fun. It’s almost like an accentuated version of life most people don’t get to experience. It is quite a ride!  You don’t know how the hell you are going to do these things because it has never happened! As an actor it’s fun to think and explore how you would react in certain situations.

MG: What’s your preference between shooting TV and movies?
TVW: I love working since that’s where it’s at. Films have your for however many days where you just hammer things out. You get a chance to explore with a film as you are asked to improv more. The directors I have worked with in film have wanted me to just play and play. When it comes to TV there is more of a structure. A lot of writers are producers and they want their lines said. I understand and respect that. There are just different formats for each one. They are equally rewarding and satisfying. As an actor they are both playgrounds.

MG: Can you tell us about your upcoming television pilot?
TVW: Michael Bay has TV series on TNT titled “The Last Ship”. We just finished shooting the pilot but I am not sure how much I call really say anything more than that right now. 

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