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Space Ghost Coast to Coast: Volume Two

Following up Volume One, Space Ghost Coast to Coast Volume Two actually decides to include a nearly complete season by focusing on 14 of the 15 episodes of 1996's third year — skipping the first one that was included in Vol. One (perhaps the next set will simply offer Season Four). The premise of the show is that abandoned Hanna Barbara cartoon character Space Ghost, aka Tad Ghostal (who had his own show from 1966-68), now has his own TV talk show and is assisted by giant mantis Zorak as his outer space Paul Schaeffer, while the metallically encased and C.H.I.P.S. obsessed Moltar acts as his producer, both of whom used to be his nemeses and actively have a distaste for him (to which Space Ghost occasionally zaps them for no apparent reason). Though the show began with Tad interviewing lame C-list guests, by Season Three the series developed a strong cult following and the guests got marginally better (for instance, Matt Groening and Dave Grohl), while some musical artists seem to be fans (Sonic Youth's Thurston Moore is the focus of one episode that serves as a tribute to the show's late theme song composer Sonny Sharrock), though much of the comedy still comes from awkward interviews with the barely famous — they also make appearances (Carrot Top and "The Brady Bunch"'s Susan Olsen). The premise of SGCTC is that Space Ghost is a horrible interviewer, and even the A-listers (like Metallica's James Hetfield and Kirk Hammet) have to suffer through painful questions and sometimes incoherent responses. As was espoused in the review of the first set, the show, especially in prolonged exposure, can quickly run its course from faintly — though absurdly — amusing to boring. But in small doses (most episodes run 12 minutes) it holds up. However, as this season progresses the show gets funnier, capping with an episode dedicated to live-action reenactments of earlier episodes. Though it has a cult following, it's also the Rosetta Stone for Cartoon Network, since it was their first original program and helped launch such winners as the more Brak-centric and hilarious Cartoon Planet, and led to Aqua Teen Hunger Force and Harvey Birdman: Attorney at Law. Warner presents Space Ghost Coast to Coast: Vol. 2 on two platters in the original full frame (1.33:1) and in 2.0 stereo. Extras include commentaries on all the episodes, featuring a revolving set of commentators (including writer Andy Merrill, associate producer Dave Willis, voice artists C. Martin Croker and George Lowe, guests Joel Hodgson and Janeane Garafolo, and a comic commentary with Brak and Zorak, along with Meatwad and Mooninite #2 from Aqua Teen Hunger Force). On disc one there's "Matt Groening Raw Interview" (15 min.) and a "Thurston Moore performance" (8 min.) and two Easter eggs. Disc Two features "Andy's Pilot" (3 min.), which is an early version of the show, the "1993 Pencil Test" (1 min.) with information about composer Sonny Sharrock, and two additional Easter eggs. Dual-DVD digipak with paperboard slipcase.

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