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The Telefile

TV on DVD: Tuesday, December 17, 2013

by Ethan Alter December 17, 2013 6:00 am
TV on DVD: Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Carrie Underwood tries -- and fails -- to climb the mountain that is live television.

The Sound of Music Live!
Jeez, imagine how well Smash might have done if every episode had aired live? Apparently, that's the ingredient required to get a mass audience to tune into a Broadway show on the small screen. Well, that and the presence of a former American Idol turned family-friendly country superstar, of course. Who cares that she can't really act? Not the 18 million people who tuned in to watch Carrie Underwood unconvincingly portray an Austrian nun who falls in love with the emotionally distant patriarch (True Blood's Stephen Moyer, who is hilariously miscast) of the seven-child Von Trapp clan against the backdrop of World War II-era Europe. At least Audra McDonald and Laura Benanti were on hand to show everyone what trained musical theater professionals look like. Seeing The Sound of Music on DVD minus the live element (and its driving, hate watch-fueled Twitter traffic) makes it seem like an even bigger mess, but the ginormous ratings gives NBC a second chance to get it right. No, not The Sound of Music Live 2. We're thinking more like West Side Story Live, with Joseph Gordon-Levitt as Tony and Naya Rivera as Maria.
Extras: A lone making-of featurette.
Click here to see the highs and lows of The Sound of Music Live
Click here to see other Broadway musicals we'd like to see live on TV

Justified: The Complete Fourth Season
Eternally unappreciated by awards bodies and mainstream TV viewers, FX's Justified continued to spin great yarns in its fourth year, the last season its inspiration -- Elmore Leonard, who created the gun-toting ranger Raylan Givens (played to perfection by Timothy Olyphant) -- lived to see. (The celebrated author passed away in August.) As Raylan copes with impending fatherhood and solving a thirty-year old mystery, his sometimes-pal/sometimes-nemesis Boyd (the indispensable Walton Goggins) continues in his quest to become the region's top Oxycontin dealer, a mission thwarted by the fact that so many of his underlings are suddenly finding religion. Overshadowed somewhat by the debuts of The Americans and The Bridge, Justified continues to be one of the most dependable weapons in FX's arsenal.
Extras: Commentary tracks on 10 episodes, deleted scenes, outtakes and five featurettes.
Click here to read our full recaps of Season 4

Also on DVD:
Time to change the go-to joke from "What is Burn Notice?" to "What was Burn Notice"? The USA spy series signed off after seven seasons that a bunch of people apparently watched. Not that we knew any of them. Pick up the final run of episodes via Burn Notice: Season 7 or watch the whole run with Burn Notice: The Complete Series. William H. Macy and Emmy Rossum continue behaving badly in Shameless: The Complete Third Season. And check in with the Griffin clan in happier times -- i.e. when when Brian was still alive -- with Family Guy: Vol. 12.

Think you've got game? Prove it! Check out Games Without Pity, our new area featuring trivia, puzzle, card, strategy, action and word games -- all free to play and guaranteed to help pass the time until your next show starts.

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