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The War of the Worlds series is now being released on DVD! Season 1 (1988-1999) is released on November 1, 2005 in Region 1 in a 6 disc box set. Expect a full review of features later and full episode transcripts coming soon thereafter.

First impressions: this DVD set is rushed. So far the only special features I've found are ads for other DVDs. In their haste to toss out commercial bumpers as is their wont for DVDs (apart from animation like the original Transformers), they also excised the part of the opening where the alien hand reaches up behind the Earth and grips it, leaving only a brief last echo before the teaser quote from the episode. All instances of that have been reduced to the static image background of the closing credits.

There are no alternate audio tracks (English 2.0 only) and no subtitles. I have yet to check for closed caption line21 data. There are chapter stops at original commercial breaks but there are no menus for choosing chapters. There appears to be no attempt to sharpen and restore the video for DVD, and the compression used seems more appropriate for animation than live action. Facial details tend to float independently of head motion.

Still, this is probably the only time we will ever see this series released on DVD. First-run scenes and dialogue appear to be intact; this isn't a dump of the current syndication package to DVD. The first episode is not split into two parts. A notable difference is an older Paramount branding than you see in current syndication packages, but I am uncertain whether it is of the correct vintage. I will compare to a tape I made of one episode from the first run.

Thus far I have viewed only the first four episodes, but from what I've seen I know I won't be discarding my tapes.

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