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The Wild Wild West - The Fourth Season
List Price: $39.98

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Product Description

Studio: Paramount Home Video Release Date: 03/18/2008

At one uncharacteristically poignant point during Wild Wild West's final season, secret service agent James West raises a glass to toast "absent friends." That would be Artemis Gordon, West's resourceful sidekick and a master of disguise and the odd "diversion." Ross Martin, who portrayed Gordon, had suffered a heart attack and was missing in action for several episodes, so missed that it took several actors to fill his shoes: Charles Aidman as Jeremy Pike, William Scharlett (who early in the season portrays a villain in the episode, "The Night of the Gruesome Games") as Frank Harper, Pat Paulson, the hangdog mock-Presidential candidate on The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour, as the seemingly milquetoast Bosley Cranston in "The Night of the Camera," and Alan "The Skipper" Hale, Jr. as chemist Ned Brown in "The Night of the Sabatini Death," (which also features Jim Backus and contains a cute Gilligan's Island in-joke at episode's end). With or without Martin, this was a wild, wild season that offers genre-bending kicks in episodes that evoke James Bondian espionage, Jules Verne fantasy, bizarre Avengers-style villainy, and even The Phantom of the Opera. James and company are up against some entertainingly over-the-top megalomaniacs bent on world domination. Of course, the sun couldn't set on the West without one last encounter with the series' most popular villain, the "dictatorial, vain, short-tempered, and occasionally unreasonable" Dr. Loveless (Michael Dunn), who re-emerges yet again to pass judgment over those he professes to have wronged him in "The Night of Marguerite's Revenge." Two of TV's comedy icons, Harvey Koran and a pre-Mary Tyler Moore Show Ted Knight, play it straight as formidable foes in "The Night of the Big Blackmail" and "The Night of the Kraken," respectively. "The Night of the Winged Terror," the series' only two-parter, is an effective creep show featuring a hypnotizing bulging-brained adversary. Conrad, as one character compliments him, is "better than ever," whether dispatching goons (he performed all his own stunts) or romancing the ladies ("He said something about showing the big dipper to the daughter of the Lithuanian ambassador," Artemis explains West's absence in "Big Blackmail"). While there are signs that the series was poised to jump the shark, it is too bad it ended before further encounters with Professor Montague, who is introduced in "The Night of the Janis" as the Q-like creator of such nifty gadgets as a harmonica gun. --Donald Liebenson

Customer Reviews:

  • Wild Wild 60's music influence
    One thing to note about this seasons episodes is the occasional stylish late 60's background music blended in with the never old Wild Wild West theme music. Racial integration of more black actors in episodes can also be found during this season as well in contrast to previous seasons. The women's movement had not yet taken root at this time and only small traces in attitude changes toward women can be detected in the episodes. The difference in the episodes produced in the first season versus this forth season reminds those of us who lived it the pronounced changes that took place in our society during those four short years....more info
  • DVD rot rampant
    I love the show and the packaging is nice, but all of my CBS TV dvd titles are getting bad cases of DVD rot.(an oily looking stain on the playing side. This release is no exception.Your prized and expensive DVD set may not be playable in a few years even without a single scratch. And I thought Universal's double sided disks were bad. At least they come unscathed when new....more info
  • Great CD Set
    Each season of Wild Wild West has been a gem and this last compilation doesn't disappoint. For fans of the show, it is a treasure!...more info
  • Wild Wild West Season 4
    For those who enjoy the "Good Old Days" of TV. This set (1-4) is a complete enjoyment. From the first black and white shows to the color ones. Great for the real fans!...more info
  • The Final Season
    In the audio commmentary, Robert Conrad says that the series ended because of the concern that too much violence was being shown on television at the time the 4th season was in progress, this being 1968-1969. Sad, because everytime there is an uproar about something happening on TV, shows are cancelled and then within five years shows are worse than they were.

    I like the series because I saw it to be differnt from the other westerns that were airing in the mid 1960's. The mainstay of shows were human dramas set in a western US setting. The Wild Wild West was free-for-all approach to a western, blending technology, science, science fiction, the occult, adventure, action, pretty young ladies, humor, and wonderful character portrayals by Ross Martin. All of this wrapped up in a mystery to be unravelled as the show progress.

    Though I haven't seen every episode of the season, it seems that the shows are starting to lose something compared to Season 1. Some of the props and sets have been reused so much that they are instantly familiar, thus somewhat stale. But the plots continue to be interesting. Two of the most disappointing episodes are TOF Bleak Island and TOF Miguelitos Revenge. Bleak Island was fine except the attempt at the end to turn the story back on itself seemed very corny. Miguelitos Revenge was a very poor last episode for such a clever adversary as Dr. Loveless. The plot lacked the intensity of the earlier Dr. Loveless episodes and became poor attempt to introduce a science fiction element. The absence of Antionette and Voltaire was also disappointing. To properly tie up the Dr. Loveless legacy, I would have expected to see the clever Dr. once again plotting to get control of California, which is what he wanted in his first appearance in Season 1.

    Overall, Season 4 continues the tradition of the series. I wouldn't say it is better or worse than other seasons. The episodes still surprise me when I see the unique blend of elements. The ladies are still incredibly beautiful and Jim and Arty keep finding their way into the lair of the bad guys and putting them out of business....more info
  • Artemus-deprivation; still a great show
    The fourth season of this great show suffered somewhat from the long absence of Artemus Gordon, due to the actor's health, I believe. The people helping Jim in his stead were okay, but of course there's nothing like Artie and his voices, disguises, accents, and other quirks.
    That said, it looks like the series ended at exactly the right time, as they'd run through so many villains, gadgets, and similar plots....more info
  • Retro and Classic
    We enjoyed the Wild Wild West when we were younger and we are enjoying these series even more. We can watch and not worry about the grandkids can watching it. These baby bommers are going retro and searching the classics from our young adulthood/childhood. Thumbs up!!!...more info
  • Another Great 60s Gem
    As with some of the other 60s shows I've reviewed (ie. Mission Impossible - The Complete First TV Season), I should acknowledge I was born long after this series ended and only caught some brief snippets in re-runs on TBS. But I'm a fan of the 60s spy genre, and decided to give The Wild Wild West a look.

    This series is great fun, and credit goes to Robert Conrad and Ross Martin for creating great leading characters that have aged fairly well. Conrad plays James West exactly like what you'd want from a James Bond character in the old west - a dash of charm, charisma and authority, and a whole lot of toughness (more on that later). Ross Martin gets to indulge in a parade of interesting disguises and accents - a few of these likely wouldn't be p.c. today, but hey those were the times. Unfortunately Martin suffered a heart attack this year, forcing some fill-in guest agents (including Gilligan's Island star Alan Hale Jr).

    The stories hit all your spy genre and western staples and then some - there's a pretty effects-heavy episode that features a giant kraken, which given 1960s effects you have to take with a few grains of salt. Michael Dunn's Dr. Loveless appears for the last time with a steam-powered robot, and another episode features a tank-like device called the juggernaut. The stories are played straight even when they venture into sci-fi territory, and at their best recall the old 'Republic Serial' style of adventure. There also seems to be an endless line of hot 60's actresses that guest star in every episode, including Lana Wood. It's almost like Robert Conrad had some clause in his contract that required at least one pretty girl per episode....

    And last but not least, the action sequences are great. You'll find fights from today's shows may look more brutal and intense at first glance, but that's with a lot of clever photography and editing. In The Wild Wild West, you'll see one-take wide shots with people tossing each other over counters, tabletops, climbing onto 2nd-floor balconies and throwing others off, hurtling from staircases into crates, etc. It's amazing what Robert Conrad and the stunt team pulled off for a weekly TV show. What shows today let their actors take the same amount of risk?

    If you have any interest at all in retro-TV, this is an extremely worthwhile set. I picked up season 4 first but it's actually inspired me to buy The Wild Wild West: The Complete Series. Highly recommended. ...more info
  • Fantastic Series
    The Wild Wild West (or W3), was one of the most inovative TV series to ever see the small screen. This unique concept blended the popular "James Bond" style spy with the classic western (both were very popular on TV and film at the time). It hit the mark so well that it was to inspire a number of other shows decades later including the popular The Adventures of Brisco County Jr. - The Complete Series
    The fourth and final season of W3 is every bit as entertaining as the other three.
    Personally, I was most impressed with the very well thought out action scenes and clever ideas for the "secret gadgets" that were used in the show. Fight scenes are well coordinated and entertaining with the actors actually doing all of their own stunts.

    The whole series,(including this season), has a guest star list that reads as "whos who" of actors from television at that time. For example: Season four included Alan Hale jr. and a small nod to his role as The Skipper in the beloved Gilligan's Island TV series.

    The only drawback with the fourth season was that the producers had wanted to make the series more "hip" for the younger crowd by adding a sort of surf music sound to the score. It does not always work and the music is not as good as the scoring of the first two seasons.

    That said, the Fourth season of The Wild Wild West is a piece of entertainment worthy of watching. So grab some popcorn and sit down with a series that never "Jumped the Shark". It's a Wild, Wild ride....more info
  • more then just a good western
    You gotta love character of Jim West. He fits to role perfectly, much better then the Prince of Belair guy.:-) Apart from being handsome and has a "killer butt" (hetrosexually speaking of course) he is the paradigm of what a hero should be. Of course, when you add in Ross Martin's talent with his many character portrayals, it's a wonder to me why the show only lasted for only 4 seasons?!! Their arch nemesis Dr.Loveless,their luxurious train coach and their many "high tech 19th century gadgets" brought a special flavour to the show that stands apart from all those other cardboard generic westerns. In my opinion the 1st season was the best, and the others seasons were all good too, but not without a few flaws, such as the shows' endings were a little anti climatic and a little too predictable, but that's the way it was with most of the show in the 60's. But the chemistry that Arty & Jim created could never again be successfully copied, as evident of that awful remake movie that bombed big time a few years ago....more info
  • Wild Wild West season 4
    I have purchased all 4 seasons that have been released of the tv series The Wild, Wild West. I love the show and the stars. They are neatly packaged and easy to view.

    I am however extremely disappointed in the lack of special features after the first season was released. Mr. Martin and Mr. Conrad deserve better. As someone who has put about 120$ into the DVD's, I deserve better. Shame on the company that is putting these DVD's together. You owe me a special DVD of extras in my opinion.

    I think the price is too much for what you receive. Drop the price or increase the extra's. ...more info
  • wild wild west season 4
    received product in very goods condition. very reasonable for product and shipping too. thank you...more info