on February 25, 2004
As other reviewers have stated, the third season is where the show really took off, with both the animation and the writing. Some of the best episodes of the show were made in this season. However, the reason why I'm only giving the DVD 4 stars instead of 5 is because of the organization of the DVD. I love the episodes themselves, I love the commentaries, and I love the new couch gags featured in the main menu. My only complaint is with the special features.
The DVDs for the previous two seasons had the special features grouped together, usually on the last disk. I liked this because they were easier to find and view. The third season DVD is different in that there is a Special Features menu for each episode. It usually just has the option to play the commentary or not (this option was in the Language Selections menu on earlier DVDs). A few episodes contained Scene Specific Sketches. However, I didn't like this feature because you don't know when in the episode they will appear. You have to watch the episode carefully for a pencil icon to appear on the screen, and then press Play to see the sketches. This did not work on at least one of the episodes, and you can't have the subtitles turned on at the same time, either. I think it would have been better to have a separate slide show of all of these sketches grouped together. I also would have liked to see more featurettes and interviews with the staff (i.e. Matt Groening, producers, directors, etc.) to learn more about the people who work on the show.
There are several Easter Eggs on this DVD, most of which are difficult to find. The following episodes have hidden commentary tracks (two with Mike Reiss, and two with Al Jean): Stark Raving Dad, Lisa's Pony, Bart The Lover, and Separate Vocations. These tracks can be accessed by either going to the episode's Special Features menu and pressing 10 on your remote, or you can start playing the episode and change the Language track to 5/5. Disc 4 contains 13 random sketches that can be accessed by going to the main Special Features menu and pressing 742 on your remote (a different drawing pops up each time you do this). However, there are two other Easter Eggs that I haven't been able to fine yet, the Audio Outtakes and the Baby Translator. If any of you know how to access these features, please post instructions here, as I'm sure there are other fans who need assistance as well. Thanks!
Overall, though, this is a wonderful DVD that I encourage every Simpsons fan to get. I just hope that the creators of upcoming Simpsons DVDs will read this, take my comments into account, and make it easier to find and access all of the special features, and have better organization of the menus.
on December 2, 2003
I originally didn't think I'd be buying boxed sets of <i>The Simpsons</i> until we got to Season 4, because I can hardly stand to watch the older episodes on syndication -- the animation is too crude, the jokes aren't quite as funny, the voices aren't quite right, Homer's not dumb enough -- but once I saw the full episode listing, I knew that I had to get Season 3.
Some of my favorite Simpsons moments and lines are on this set; Homer's chocolate town fantasy on "Burns Verkaufen der Kraftwerk," the hilarious "Sending Our Love Down the Well" celebrity benefit song in "Radio Bart," Troy McClure's narration for the "state's only two-star health resort," Rancho Relaxo promotional video in "Homer Alone," hilarious educational films ("A World Without Zinc" and the infamous one where Fuzzy Bunny hits puberty and gets married), Homer's _2001_-inspired vibrating chair trip in "Brother, Can You Spare Two Dimes," the series of misfortunes that befall major league baseball players in "Homer at the Bat" and the entire episode of "Colonel Homer" (with the very popular Homer-ism, "It takes two to lie; one to lie and one to listen.") This is the season where Homer begins to take odd jobs outside the plant, where Sideshow Bob starts his cycle of recidivism, and Marge first uses the "Your childhood dream was to... and you did that..." setup. Homer gets dumber (and funnier), the storylines veer more towards the absurd, more "freeze-frame" jokes pop up, and the animation begins to get better, so much so that I've kind of taken it for granted over the years.
If you're a Simpsons fan, the above has no doubt reminded you of other things in those episodes you'd love. This is a great season, even if it's not the Simpsons at their best, therefore I'd recommend this set -- plus you get to see these episodes uncut, without commercials.
Admittedly, the special features aren't very exciting, although I do personally like all of the commentary tracks from Matt Groening et al. "Colonel Homer" has a fun Pop-Up Video style feature that you can take or leave, but I liked it and I kind of wish was available with at least a few more episodes here. Also, it may take you a few times to figure out how to properly fold the case so it fits back in the box again.
on September 16, 2003
I loved The Simpsons from episode one. It was fresh, different, "add various complimentary adjective here", etc. However, as I got older and cried from laughing as the years waned on, the early episodes became less and less funny and incresingly crude and sophmoric. Granted, they are still worth owning as a fan and collector but overall, they aren't nearly as funny as they would eventually become.
Season 3 is where it starts to pick up steam. Before the third season began, The Simpsons had their moments but a good number of "experts" saw the show ultimately taking a nosedive and becoming a footnote to a footnote. Season 3 changed all of that. It is due to this season of The Simpsons that is proclaimed by many to be "the greatest show ever made". Matt Groening's amazing wit and humor really started to blossom during these episodes and though not quite to the level of greatness achieved since, something metamorphic-like was happening. Characters were beginning to take on lives of their own whereas before, most characters aside from the Simpsons were mainly just backdrop. It was in season 3 that people began to align themselves with the insanity of Mr. Burns, Ralph Wiggum, Principal Skinner and the like.
The extras, once again, are disappointing when compared to sets from Family Guy and Futurama. For once, I'd love to see an extensive behind-the-scenes or a lengthy chat with Matt Groening to find out what lurks behind the mask. However, one cannot complain about much with the exception of the respective seasons not being released in a more timely fashion.
on July 30, 2003
The third season of the Simpsons is the first one that i can go back and watch over and over again. the first 2 seasons were pretty lackluster in retrospect, and rarely funny. season 2 had some good moments, but season 1 is really pretty unwatchable, except for nostalgic purposes. the third season, however, is when the show really began to shine. it is not perfect, but most of the episodes are quite funny, and some (like 'burns verkaufen der kraftwerk', 'radio bart' and a few more) are some of the best episodes ever. I am giving this 4 stars instead of 5 only because in comparison to season 4 thru 8, season 3 is not quite as good. although compared to just about every other show on tv, it is worthy of a 5. Really, this is the first 'must-own' season of the simpson's to be released, and is well worth the purchase. here are the episodes in thie season:
Stark Raving Dad
Mr. Lisa Goes To Washington
When Flanders Failed
Bart The Murderer
Like Father Like Clown
Treehouse Of Horror II
Saturdays Of Thunder
Burns Verkaufen Der Kraftwerk
I Married Marge
Lisa The Greek
Bart The Lover
Homer At The Bat
Dog Of Death
The Otto Show
Bart's Friend Falls In Love
Brother, Can You Spare Two Dimes?
on June 18, 2004
I own Seasons 1-3 of "The Simpsons" on DVD, and this season has to be the best of them all. This is the season where the voices of the characters really began to sound like they do today. Also, the animation is way better and not as crude. There are quite a bit special features, but some aren't worth viewing. The humor of The Simpsons as we know today is not quite there in this season, but it's getting there. There is a total of 24 episodes on this DVD, and every single one is great. Some classics on this DVD include "Stark Raving Dad" (Homer is put into a mental institute with "Micheal Jackson"), "Bart's Friend Falls in Love" (Milhouse falls in love with new girl Samantha Stanky), and the sequel to "Treehouse of Horror." Buying this funny, but smart, show on DVD is money well spent, especially with this season.
on September 6, 2003
I am going to make this informative yet short. The picture quailty is not 100% yet as this was before they started using computers to color frames. I would say it's about 8 out of 10. It's still full of classic Simpson moments, like the softball game where Ken Griffey Jr suffers from gigantism.
The commentaries are wonderful and the packaging is still magnificent. The menus for the screens are better than previous releases. This was an issue with some fans who did not want to wait for menus to load to watch episodes of The Simpsons.
The price is affordable. This is one of the seasons of this show (i'm sure) that made it possible for them to be still going today. The first season is classic for obvious reason but if you don't have the other two, still buy season three first. It is simply hilarious.
on August 29, 2003
i love the whole season 3 dvd package much more than the season one and two package...the episodes in this season are a lot more funnier. the jokes keep coming every few seconds...but are still not as good as the later seasons...to me at least;) The commentary on ALL the episodes is just the icing on the cake. the commentary is actually FUN to listen to! those folks who have the season 1 and 2 dvds and listened to the commentaries will notice the difference. this is a must own if you love comedy!WOO HOO!
on August 11, 2003
If your a true Simpsons fan you must own all of these season's. A die hard fan wants it all even if season's 1 & 2 aren't as funny as the rest, they are history and in a few years they will be hard to find. So own them now or forever hold you piece.
Season three is when they started to have some flare in their episodes. My favorite from the 3rd season has to be Flaming Moe's. I am not going to describe all the episodes because just about every last person on this site has already done that.
on August 16, 2003
I Think I know why it is taking so long to get the Simpsons out on DVD. Matt Groening Wrote it himself(We've got more Simpsons episodes to make, then broadcast, then re-run, than chope up for Syndication, then sell to you on DVD. But You know something we wouldn't have it any other way!) This was a Quote from The simpsons Season 1 on DVD. There is know reson Fox can't get more out per year I already have Season 1-7 of the X Files I am just wating for the simpsons Thanks :}
on October 31, 2003
The reviewer for Amazon.com said this DVD demonstrates why the Simpsons are "by a large margin" the best television show ever. He is wrong. While the Simpsons were great, it can't compare to Seinfeld. Seinfeld was the perfect sitcom, there will never be anything like it again. And unlike the Simpsons, the brains behind Seinfeld knew when to quit. But the Simpsons were still a great show and this DVD showcasing their glory years is a great buy.