The Osbournes is MTV’s highest-rated series in the network’s 21-year history. The critically acclaimed and Emmy award-winning first season has just been released on DVD. The two-disc DVD set is packed with all 10 landmark episodes and enough goodies to make its $19.99 price tag seem like a steal.
The idea for the show came about while filming the Osbourne family’s second appearance on MTV Cribs. After observing the chemistry between the parents (Ozzy and Sharon) and the hilarious interactions between the siblings (Jack and Kelly), MTV offered the Osbournes their own reality series.
In a market overrun with reality TV shows like Survivor, Temptation Island and The Mole, The Osbournes shined through, garnering comparisons to sitcom greats like Married…With Children and Roseanne instead of being pigeonholed as another lame reality series. In fact, The Osbournes had one major difference from those sitcoms: swearing, and lots of it. The show’s first season averaged more than 50 swears an episode. Lets do the math: 21 minutes of programming divided by 40 swears (and that’s being a little conservative) equals nearly 2 bleeps a minute.
What made the show a stellar example of “real” TV was the way the family was totally oblivious to the fact that filming was taking place, which gave viewers a seemingly organic and fresh look into the workings of an “all-American” family (despite the fact that they’re British).
Among the special features included on the DVD is an Ozzy Translator, which switches on subtitles, so viewers can see what the “Prince of Darkness” is talking about half the time. The Osbournes was heavily censored throughout the season, and the DVD now gives viewers the chance to hear those filthy words straight from the family members’ mouths.
There are entertaining interactive segments included on the DVD, called set-top games: “Name That Dookie,” where one must find the animal that crapped the specific turd shown to you (Warning this may not be suitable for those with weak stomachs); “Edit A Scene,” this is a chance to put together a five-minute segment by using clips from the show; and “Osbournes Bingo,” where cards are marked off as your favorite reality-TV family swears, screams, breaks something, etc.
For anyone who objects to such vulgarity on TV and thinks the show is a slap to the moral fiber that constructs a healthy family environment, well, you’re absolutely right.
But for those out there who are looking to laugh at something fun to watch while kicking back a few drinks, this is for you.
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