Whoa! Blossom: Seasons 1 & 2 DVDs Drop Today

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The first two seasons of one of the 1990s very special shows is now available on DVD. Read the review after the jump.

If one


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Whoa! Blossom: Seasons 1 & 2 DVDs Drop Today

  • Whoa! Blossom: Seasons 1 & 2 DVDs Drop Today

  • ">

    blossom.jpg

    The first two seasons of one of the 1990s very special shows is now available on DVD. Read the review after the jump.

    If one were to identify a literary forebear to Blossom, it might

    be Judy Blume, chronicler of the awkward rites of passage of female

    adolescents. But show creator Don Reo swears it was Catcher in the Rye's

    Holden Caulfield--a more surly cat than Mayim Biyalik's jovial eponymous protagonist--and only at the suggestion of a network exec did he flip

    the gender. This information was gleaned from the bonus feature, A Very

    Special Show, that fans can find in the Blossom Seasons 1 & 2 DVD that dropped today.

    There's so much to learn about the show that had so much to teach that

    it's popularly recalled with the prefix, "very special." (as in

    "Tonight, on a Very Special Blossom...") We hear from Blossom's

    designer, Sherry Thomson, whom the bonus feature "A Very Special Style"

    credits with pioneering the use of vintage clothes in TV costumes, and

    who explains one outfit thusly:
     
    "This vest is actually made out of an African Kente cloth that is hand-woven in strips...I bought the strips at an African marketplace...the colors are non-traditional...I designed a little short top to wear underneath...This is the hat she wore. It's a Moroccan-style hat. It has a hole in the top where her ponytail stuck out. The pants are interesting, they're fun. We call them MC Hammer pants."

    And if you ever wondered the origins of Joey's iconic "whoa," purchase the DVD and wonder no longer.

    The show has aged better than one might expect. Crossed signals gags like a conversation between Joey (Joey Lawrence) and his dad (Ted Wass) over a blow-up doll Joey intends to use to drive in the carpool lane--but Dad thinks will be put to a more traditional use--remain funny. ("You know I talked to you about safe sex, but you don't need this." "But this is for when I'm stuck in traffic!") And the acting is solid throughout, with Bialik as the clear star.

    One thing that's striking about the show is its candor and its refusal to make its young female characters unrealistically naive or asexual. The first episode opens with Blossom looking to buy tampons for the first time. And a year before a young woman asked a presidential candidate about his undergarments, young teens Blossom and Six (Jenna von Oy) were musing about birth control and what their future husbands would look like naked. When Blossom talks to her dad, he treats her respectfully--like she's an adult--and the show generally does the same to its audience. It has its hokiness, but it's easier stomach than a lot of other hokiness from the era.

    One thing baffles me, though: if the dad's such a low-earning, bohemian musician and brothers Joey and Nick talk with Brooklyn accents, why do they all live in what looks like a suburb in Connecticut? I guess some sitcom conventions die harder than others.

    Finally, Mayim Bialik is talking comeback. And here's a where-are-they-now slideshow on the show's actors.

    Blossom: Seasons 1 & 2, Shout Factory, $49.99, Release Date: 1/27/09

     
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