"Party of Five" explores the lives of the Salingers, five brothers and sisters determined to stay together following the tragic loss of their parents. The one-hour drama focuses on the way the family uses the creativity, humor, and love instilled by their parents to deal with the conflicts and demands of everyday life.
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Reviewed in the United States on December 10, 2018
I love this show, the characters, and the writers. From Charlie the oldest to Owen the youngest, this show deals with major real-life topics and the acting is first rate! I wish they had more shows like this on now. They should reboot the show and bring all the characters back (aged). My favorites were Neve Campbell and Scott Wolf. My favorite season was the first season, but I am watching it on Netflix now and the fourth is pretty good. I can't wait to see the 5th and 6th seasons. I would recommend this show and it is definitely worth watching!
Reviewed in the United States on February 16, 2013
I bought this to help pass the time on my in-home treadmill, and it worked great. A good distraction, and each episode was about 40 minutes, so an easy, healthy walk. The five disks (20+ episodes?) kept me coming back. I found the acting to be superb and the issues still pertinent. A good family series for pre-teen through adult. Deals with day-to-day challenges as they affect the parent-less family of five siblings, including loss, grief, family dynamics, school politics, dating, addiction, following your dreams. Some good lessons (for all ages) on handling these hurdles in healthy ways. A little idealistic, sure -- I mean, the working-class characters have beauty, charm, talent, nice clothes, good teeth and a big house in San Francisco. On a typical budget? Not. -- but I found the story-line and the emotions to be real enough, and entertaining to boot. Feel-good TV .. a refreshing change in this reality-TV generation.
I have actually written my name on the online petition last year to get Party of Five released on DVD. Not sure if it was because of efforts like that or similar petitions, but it's finally here and I couldn't be happier! This was one of my all-time favorite shows with depth, drama and comedy all while still being very 'real' in a sea of teen-dramas that were anything but. So ok, I'm guessing everyone who's reading this review already knows about how great the show was so I'll focus on the DVD. But first, I'll start by addressing two other reviews here with low-star rankings. First, to the person who said it was a poor-quality DVD with audio out of sync and color blotches, etc., that's not true at all and is a common trait of off-brand DVD players or even budget versions of name-brands and especially computer-based DVD players (although I'm not sure which the reviewer was using.) What I can say however is *every* DVD here plays pristinely on all of my equipment, including a notebook with a DVD drive. Perfect colors, perfect syncing, everything. It actually looks clearer and more razor-sharp than the original shows that aired on TV showing they most likely went right from the masters right to DVD rather than converting to an interim step first. Second, to the person who commented that they didn't like how the producers 'decided to strip the opening credits and song from the first disc' didn't follow the show (or just doesn't remember), nor did they listen to the commentaries by the producers or actors. If they did, they'd remember that there *was* no opening credits or theme song for the first few episodes because there wasn't enough footage of the show yet recorded to make the opening scene! These DVD episodes are literally exactly as they appeared on TV, missing openings and all, including calling the Bodeans' song 'Closer to Free' 'Closer to Five' in the end credits! This is exactly what was aired. That's the way DVD-from-TV should be. Which brings me back to the DVD extras. I really like that there's both producer and actor commentaries for a few episodes, but I'd say too few. For example, there's only one on discs 1 and 2 (with five episodes on the disc) and none at all on disc 3. Also, the two 'special feature' interviews at the end are almost verbatim dialog between them and seem to be the same interview just shot on different days on different sets and edited differently. This of course isn't the actual case, and I attribute it to trying to remember something from ten years ago, but it did seem a little redundant. (For instance, at least three separate times Scott Wolf explains what 'Just look at the dog!' means. I'm glad he did--better too much than not enough--but I wish they would have extended the interviews to cover more topics perhaps including more about the actual filming or how Lacey Chabert trained to look sooo da*n convincing playing that violin even though she admits she can't play even one note! Something else that I can't figure out is why was Neve Campbell left out of the actors commentaries for the episodes? They never said. At first, I thought maybe she wasn't part of the DVD release at all, but she is in the extra features, plus she's ironically the only name mentioned on Amazon as a cast member (without clicking 'more') and is even named in the title on the site! Go figure! So to sum up, I love these DVDs. Finally one of the best shows on TV is making a come-back for the DVD-lovers out there. Plus the bonus extra interviews, etc. just make them that much more appealing. (Again though, I do wish there were more from the cast and crew as far as commentaries of the episodes. Maybe seasons 2-6) But all the extras are the 'nice to haves'. The 'must haves' are the episodes themselves which are faithfully replicated exactly as they aired. Perfectly. Watch all of the episodes and definitely go through the interviews and commentaries and you'll quickly see why it won a Golden Globe and was called by TV Guide 'The Best Show you're Not Watching!' Ok... now will someone tell NBC to release Hidden Hills seasons 1 through 1 (smirk) on DVD! Man, I'm still ticked that didn't make it to season 2! What a hilarious show!!!
This series took an honest look at the impact the death of parents had on children ranging in age from 9 months old to 24 years old. Charlie (Mathew Fox), the oldest, must some how figure a way to raise his siblings-while he hasn't exactly figured out how to raise himself. He's like any 24 year-old, he makes a lot of mistakes, he's selfish at times, and his lacks direction-something very common in twenty-something's. Bailey (Scott Wolf) is the glue that tries to hold it all together, making sure the check book is balanced, trying to keep the bills paid and his baby brother in clean diapers-the problem, Bailey is only 16, he has a learning disability, and he isn't dealing with things quite as well as everyone would believe. Then there is Julia (Never Campbell), fifteen and coming to terms with becoming a woman without a mother to guide her or a father to protect her. Next is the precocious, Claudia (Lacey Chabert), a violin prodigy, like her mother-this 11 year old is dealing with her special talents, the loss of her parents, and trying to understand and survive in her new family dynamic. Lastly, is baby Owen, the youngest Salinger-he sleeps in Bailey's bedroom, he's cared for by his other siblings, and he will be the only child not able to remember what his parents looked like.
This show was wonderful. It had a phenomenal cast. It dealt with issues in a real way. The show was always honest with itself and with the audience, especially in the first season. Give the show a look and you'll find yourselves in love with the Salinger's as well.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on September 20, 2010
San Francisco. As Social Services hover, the Salingers strive to stay together after their parents are killed in a car crash. 24 year old brother Charlie moves in to care for Bailey (16), Julia (15), Claudia (11) and baby Owen. All are self-willed and pull in different directions. Helping to restore harmony are the weekly family meals in the restaurant their father once owned - theirs the table reserved for a "party of five".
Of course there is sadness, sometimes in abundance, but this gentle likeable series is also full of humour - nicely scripted, well cast, situations credible (except perhaps for some wayward Jill sequences). Yes, for the most part feet are firmly on the ground, the characters with depth. Note, for example, Charlie's dilemma - the job offer of a lifetime, but it means a move to Seattle....
A 1994/95 series. 22 episodes, commentaries and bonuses provided ten years later by creators and cast. They reminisce interestingly about the show initially so often facing the axe - instead to win a Golden Globe and to run for six seasons. Prominent attractions are Neve Campbell before film fame and Matthew Fox before he got "Lost".
Standout episode? The first Thanksgiving without their parents coincides with news of the drunken driver's early release from prison - this a double challenge to them all. Movingly the cast are still affected by the storyline when commentating a decade later. Also moving are accounts of tributes from fans declaring how the show helped them to come to terms with loss.
"Claudia, go to your tent!" How come? Watch and see, this one of the many moments to raise a smile.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on October 24, 2006
Having remembered watching this show the first time around, I was delighted to see it had been released on DVD. It is great watching it the second time around, and it brings back loads of great memories from the mid-late 90s. Catching up with the original story of the five kids fending for themselves and how they manage is still as good. Also getting to watch a very young Matthew Fox (now starring in 'Lost') is bonus! If you were a fan of the show, then you won't be disappointed. My only concern is when will I be able to buy the 2nd series?!!
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on January 12, 2006
Thank God they saw fit to release this amazing TV show. The ultimate predecessor to 'Dawson's' and even 'The OC'. They would not be where they are today were it not for good ol' Party of Five. So glad it's on dvd because I've worn out my taped-off-the-telly VHS! As good a reason as any to buy a multi region dvd player. BUY THIS AND SEASON TWO NOW so they release the others! Extras are great, good nostalgic look back, but frankly just good to have all episodes together, sans adverts! I may never leave the house again!
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on October 27, 2005
This is one of my favourite TV programmes of all time: the acting, the storylines - everything was superb about this series. It's great to see Matthew Fox back on our screens in Lost, but I think he had an even greater role in Party of Five. So if you're mad about Matthew Fox, then buy Party of Five to see his acting at its finest! The good news is that Season Two is getting released on 20/12/05, the bad news is that it's still only available on Region 1 (available to order now on Amazon.com). If you enjoyed Season One, then please buy Season Two as this is the only way they'll release the rest of the seasons.
Ich kann mich noch gut erinnern, wie die Seire in den 90ern auf RTL lief und ich jeden Samstag nachmittag begeistert Leid und FReud mit den Salingers teilte. Sechs Staffeln umfasst die preisgekrönte Golden-Globe-Serie um die fünf Geschwister, die beim tödlichen Autounfall der Eltern plötzlich zu Vollwaisen werden. Ich besitze mittlerweile alle drei Staffeln der SerieParty of Five - Die komplette zweite Season (6 DVDs) und hoffe auf eine baldige Veröffentlichung der vierten! Schaue gerade die dritte, die ich mir bei amazon.com bestellt habe.
Bin jetzt über 10 Jahre später, fast noch begeisterter als damals, denn mittlerweile hat sich meine Perspektive verändert ;)
Jedem, der die Salingers noch nicht kennt kann ich diese Serie nur wärsmstens empfehlen. Eine SErie jenseits des Teenie- Mainstreams- wunderbar besetzt mit einer wunderbaren storyline und klasse Charakteren. Vor allem Claudia ist zu süß!
Anmerkung: Was mir in ERinnerung geblieben ist: als Claudia in ihr Zelt im Wohnszimmer zieht sit ein kleiner FEhler in der Synchronisation- auf der deutschen Tonpspur sagt Claudia einen Satz auf englisch. DAs sit wohl bei der Produktion etwas schiefgelaufen ....
Fazit: ********Ä Ü ß E R S T E M P F H L E N S W E R T *********** 10 Sterne, würde es sie geben, auch für alle weiteren Staffeln!!!
Die fünf Salinger Kinder haben es nicht leicht: nachdem ihre Eltern bei einem Autounfall ums Leben gekommen sind, schlagen sie sich allein durchs Leben. Allen voran mit Mitte Zwanzig der Älteste, Charlie, der die schwere Verantwortung übernimmt, seine jüngeren Geschwister großzuziehen, damit nicht alle in Heime oder Pflegefamilien verteilt werden. Und es ist sicher nicht leicht, sich um 4 Geschwister von 1 bis 17 Jahren zu kümmern. Vor allem, wenn man sich sein Leben eigentlich ganz anders vorgestellt hatte. Tolle Dialoge und ergreifende Szenen. 5 "Kinder", die sich gegenseitig großziehen, miteinander erwachsen werden. Eine ganz besondere Serie aus den 90ern mit dem jungen Matthew Fox in der Hauptrolle. Sehr zu empfehlen.