These new-to-DVD TV shows are led by the utterly charming sitcom "Evening Shade," featuring a high-powered ensemble cast led by Burt Reynolds.
"Evening Shade: Season One" (CBS/Paramount, 1990-91, five discs, $39.99). Reynolds plays a former football pro who returns home to rural Evening Shade, Ark., to coach the local high school team and reunites with local eccentrics.
Marilu Henner plays Reynolds' younger wife, who is pregnant with their fourth child, and the supporting cast includes a couple of regulars from many of Reynolds' '70s and '80s movies Ossie Davis and Charles Durning as well as Hal Holbrook, Elizabeth Ashley and Michael Jeter. That's a great cast by anyone's standard, but the writing is also good, making this one a funny and warm series.
My only complaint here is that there are no interviews about how it all came together, no tributes to the late Davis and Jeter nothing but the show. Still, it's a keeper.
Guests as if a show this high-powered needed any include Terry Bradshaw, Kenny Rogers, Sally Kellerman and young Billy Bob Thornton.
Extras: full frame, 24 episodes (including the hourlong pilot)
"Beau Brummell: This Charming Man" (Acorn, 2006, $24.99). Amusing comic drama about the bad boy who turned around English fashion by eschewing wigs, makeup, perfumes and powders, and allowing a friendship with the Prince Regent to propel him into high society. But when he finds himself drawn to Lord Byron, he defies the prince and it's all downhill from there.
James Purefoy is good in the title role, and the rest of the cast is also fine (in particular Matthew Rhys as Byron), but everyone is so arrogant, self-centered and aloof that it's difficult to warm up to them. (Be advised there is some nudity, sex and vulgarity.)
Extras: widescreen, text essay, filmographies
"Las Vegas: Season Five" (NBC/Universal, 2007-08, four discs, $59.98). Tom Selleck, as the new owner of the Montecito casino, takes over from James Caan for this show's final season. Nikki Cox also has departed.
Selleck is great, but unfortunately the focus remains on the soap-opera shenanigans of the younger cast. And it's apparent that the show's cancellation was unexpected, as there is a cliffhanger that ends with the words "to be continued" on the screen.Extras: widescreen, 17 episodes (including the two-hour finale), featurette, Webcasts, bloopers