Many people come to this site, being fans of The Late Show, reminising about the sketches they remember in their minds and wearing out their VHS and Betamax tapes of episodes recorded 20 years ago. There’s the Champagne Edition DVD which has Volumes 1 – 3 of The Late Show, as well as “More Bits”, and the extra bits hidden as easter eggs on Bargearse and The Olden Days DVD release.
So, the question day in and out that always gets asked by fans of the show to the D-Generation crew, as well on Facebook / Twitter / Forums is:
Q: Will The Late Show ever be released on DVD in its entirety?
Tony Martin answers the question to a follower on Twitter.
So the clear answer is: unfortunately no.
As much as we don’t want to highlight the copyright issues, when you look back at it, here are a few issues which did not appear in Champagne Edition DVD release.
* Theme song – the original theme was James Brown – (Turn Me Loose) I’m Dr Feelgood, which was replaced by a generic tune.
* Countdown Classics – the segment where Tom Gleisner and Jane Kennedy reminise over fashion, songs and Molly Meldrum’s antics, most of the segments use song samples that range from 30 seconds to a minute. A big breakdown on the song Escape / Pina Colada Song by Rupert Holmes was used. Even the first episode had a chunk of The Bee Gees – Jive Talkin’, with the scene where Robin Gibb ‘won an award’ for ‘most mystifying cut-away’, while trying not to stumble out to the back yard. Don’t forget the full song My Little Angel performed by 70s rock glamour star William Shakespeare (the late John Cave).
* Commercial Crimestoppers – a lot of products and companies lampooned and demonstrated.
* Muckraking – Using samples from other TV shows (Let’s run over Todd, from Neighbours!), as well as the Muckraking Mystery Tour where a sample of Magical Mystery Tour by The Beatles was used.
* Toilet Break – Scenes from 70s light entertainment show The Saturday Show, using songs from local and international artists (Damn Yankees – The Game, Ice T – Cop Killer) and from talent show Pot Luck (Kim Wilde – You Keep Me Hanging’ On, Billy Joel – My Life)
* Undiscovered Masterpieces Of The Cinema – Grabs of films Jaws: The Revenge, Houseboat Horror, The Armour Of God…
* Musical Closing Credits / Finale – only able to use samples, or “hooks” of the songs which are on the Champagne Edition DVD.
.. and that’s just scratching the surface.
Remember, at the time the show was on air, there was no idea or possibility of TV shows of this stature being released to the general public. There was no such thing as DVD existing in 1992 – 93. Also, Santo Cilauro and Tony have mentioned in previous interviews that there were a few jokes that didn’t perform well, as well as gremilins in the control room with delayed video plays.
So, what can you get? If you already own the Champagne Edition DVD and Bargearse / The Olden Days DVD, the best bet to watch other clips is to keep surfing YouTube for random uploads from various people, watch the Twitterverse, or find a friend who has tapes and watch them at their place. *nudge nudge*
Oh, and one last thing:
Q: If Foxtel replay Fast Forward, Full Frontal, Good News Week etc on Comedy Channel, why can’t they do that with The Late Show?
A: Pretty much the same answer above – copyright issues and some very poor sketches.
So shows like Fast Forward and Full Frontal can sort out their copyright issues and get full releases, but not The Late Show? WTH?