DVDs in Review: #68: King of Queens: The Complete First Season

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In 2007 King of Queens was the last of the 1990s live action sitcoms to finish airing, it first aired back in 1998 and stars Kevin James (I Now Pronounce You Chuck & Larry, and Leah Remini star as UPS deliveryman Doug and legal secutary Carrie Heffernan, a married couple living in Queens. At the start of the series Doug has just put the finishing touches to his basement den by fitting in his new big screen TV and he's a very content chap. He has a lovely home, a beautiful wife, a job he loves, friends and a room specifically for them to hang out in.

Unfortunately for Doug this doesn't last, Carrie's father Arthur Spooner (Jerry Stiller) moves into the basement after his wife dies and he proves incapable of looking after himself. So Doug has to move his couch and TV out into the garage and put up with the rather eccentric Arthur pootling about the house. Fortunately he's got his friends Deacon (Victor Williams), Spence (Patton Oswalt) and Richie (Larry Romano) to fall back on when he's feeling stressed.

King of Queens is a pretty stereotypical sitcom for the era with only a few variations, it remains light hearted and has quite enjoyable characters. Kevin is exceptionaly likable as the warm but slightly emotionaly stunted Doug, and Leah is fantastic as Carrie - providing a mix of beauty, comedy and sheer courseness which makes for an endeering mix. Jerry Stiller, who was the prime reason I decided to watch this is every bit as good as he was on Seinfeld as Frank Costanza. At first his character shares more than a few traits with Frank, but as time passes he settles into a different and distinct personality who is perhaps even more bizzare and emotional than Frank was.

Now, there is a bit of an odd blip in this season as originally Lisa Rieffel was cast as Sarah Spooner, Carrie's attractive wanna-be actress sister. But when the writers struggled to think of stories for her they just dropped the character and never mentioned her again, she's around for just five of the first six episodes. It's a bit jarring and frankly a shame as Lisa is both funny and attractive, but the show doesn't really suffer too much without her presence.

Still, if you're looking for a light hearted comedy show which provides entertainment and laughs all the way you can't go wrong with King of Queens. It's not quite at the level of the heavy hitting 'big' comedies like Seinfeld or Arrested Development, but it has a charm of it's own thanks to an exceptional cast and some fun crossover episodes.


Aspect Ratio: Full Frame
Rating: PG
Region: 2
Runtime: 8 hours 58 mins
Soundtrack: English, French
Subtitles: English, English HOH, Danish, Dutch, Finnish, French, Norwegian, Swedish


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