Night Gallery DVD Review

DVD review by John D’Amico of “Rod Serlings’s Night Gallery – The Complete First Season”

Rod Serling’s – NIGHT GALLERY
The Complete First Season

Episodes Video Audio Extras
Night GalleryGood evening, and welcome to a private showing of three paintings, displayed here for the first time. Each is a collectors’ item in its own way – not because of any special artistic quality, but because each captures on a canvas, and suspends in time and space, a frozen moment of a nightmare. ”

— Rod Serling, Night Gallery pilot episode

This may be considered genre blasphemy, but I believe Rod Serling’s near-forgotten follow-up to the inimitable The Twilight Zone is as good, if not better than its predecessor. While Twilight Zone promised fantastic twists and turns and all manners of episodes ranging from comedy to horror to pure sci-fi, Night Gallery merely delivered horror. Twilight Zone’s broad scope left it with some truly awful episodes (“Mr. Dingle the Strong” and “Black Leather Jackets” come quickly to mind), whereas Night Gallery’s low-key “EC Comics-style” horror morality plays rarely ever left you disappointed (particularly with a cast and crew including Ossie Davis, Roddy McDowall, Sally Field, Diane Keaton, Vincent Price, and even a pre-Duel Steven Spielberg).

The Night Gallery First Season DVD set has its share of flaws, not the least of which is the lack of restoration beyond the 1991 remastering of VHS version, which is beginning to show its age in an era of crystal clear DVDs. It is a very adequate transfer, however, and you don’t have a hard time discerning what’s on the screen. The audio is strong and reliable, and does not offer any problems.

The extras on the disc are nil, save for 5 bonus episodes featuring the series’ “biggest guest stars.” I was a little confused by this, as it seemed to insinuate that future seasons may not be released, but it is certainly more for your money and doesn’t seem to affect Night Gallery’s remarkably low price.

This is definitely classic TV and this release is certainly worth the $41 Amazon price tag. Do yourself a favor and buy, borrow, or rent a copy. You won’t be disappointed.

price tag. Do yourself a favor and buy, borrow, or rent a copy. You won’t be disappointed.price tag. Do yourself a favor and buy, borrow, or rent a copy. You won’t be disappointed.