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Penn & Teller: Bullshit!

A less strident, more wise-assed alternative to Michael Moore's political exposé TV efforts "TV Nation" and "The Awful Truth," magicians/comedians Penn & Teller brought wit and humor to debunking a bevy of urban myths with their Showtime series Penn & Teller: Bullshit! Presenting mini-lectures that are both educational and side-splittingly funny, the duo go behind the scenes to expose, ridicule, and deconstruct some of the most pervasive — and downright dumb — things that people foolishly believe. During the 13 episodes of Season One, P&T shred the credibility of feng shui, expensive bottled waters, touchy-feely baby-raising gimmicks, penis-enlargement scams, and ESP/ouija board experiences. But some segments dig even deeper, with the pair going for the jugular when the topic really irks them — anyone who blithely parrots propaganda on the dangers of second-hand smoke, for example, will be shocked to discover that there's absolutely no research to support those claims, and Penn savagely rips into charlatans like "Crossing Over"'s John Edwards who exploit folks' grief by pretending to channel their dead relatives (and then demonstrates how this age-old con is accomplished). If you missed the original episodes during their run on Showtime, they're well worth checking out on DVD — not only is Penn & Teller: Bullshit! hilarious, but you'll actually learn something. Showtime's DVD release offers the first 13 episodes of the series in bright, crisp, full-frame transfers (1.33:1), maintaining the original made-for-TV screen ratio. The DD 5.1 and 2.0 mono options are both clean and clear (available in Spanish, too). Extras include a featurette called "Junkyard Ghost!" (14 min.), which explains supposedly spectral images that appear in photos and on video; an 18-minute interview segment with P&T and famed debunker James Randi; deleted scenes, bloopers and outtakes; a P&T bio; plus trailers and web links. Three-disk digipak in paperboard slipcover.
—Dawn Taylor

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