I'm happy to announce that today, I received my copy of FRIDAY THE 13TH: THE SERIES - THE FINAL SEASON on DVD. (The box states there are 19 episodes, but not to fear: "The Prophecies," often seen as a 2-parter, originally aired as a 2-hour episode, and is included uncut in the set.) I looked at the back cover for evidence of bonus features, and it said, and I quote: "Special Features: Promos on Selected Episodes"!
I've been pretty vocal about my dislike for the previous two season sets, with their near-total lack of extras and, most noticeably, the glaring omissions of the pre-titles sequence from every episode, and for the hardcore fans, the lack of the 30-second promos for the next week's episode. Leave it to me, a fan of the show from 1988 (not quite the beginning) to notice and be bugged by these things. So the "Special Features" note on this set was something I was too curious about.
So far, I've only gone through disc 1, but it appears MY prayers, at least, were answered--to a degree. Not only does "The Prophecies" have the opening pre-title sequence ("Lewis Vendredi made a deal with the devil...") intact, but also, all episodes on the disc have the original 30-second episode promos, very nearly as they appeared during the original airings, complete with the red band across the screen denoting an "All-New Episode."
Why are they "very nearly" as they appeared? Well, do you remember at the very end of the promos, when they showed the tombstone with the F13 logo, the announcer said something like, "Next week, drive like the devil!"? (Bonus points to the fan who can identify that particular episode!) Well, they edited out that part of the audio from the promo. CBS/Paramount has them, master and all! (If they didn't have the masters of the promos, then they would have been unable to separate any audio, as music and dialogue would be on the same "tracks.")
I'm afraid we don't have all the promos--six are missing from this season ("Mightier Than The Sword," "Epitaph For a Lonely Soul," "My Wife as a Dog," and "Jack-in-the-Box," as well as those for the component halves of "The Prophecies"), and definitely we won't see the promos from seasons 1 and 2 on these discs. I have to at least give CBS/Paramount kudos for restoring the promos in this set, and giving us the 30-second opener for the first time in the sets!
What about the episodes themselves? Well, Johnny (introduced in 2 episodes from season 2) is no Ryan (who departs after the first episode in this set), but aside from him, we do have an exciting season where the writers experimented with different types of curses. If the show hadn't been shut down by parents' groups, we would have likely seen even more of a departure from the previous seasons like in this collection of episodes.
Rating: 4 stars. Not perfect, but this is the set I wish we'd received for seasons 1 and 2, and I'm very happy.