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DVD Talk review of 'Dragnet 1969: Season Three'

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DVD Talk review of 'Dragnet 1969: Season Three'

Old 12-02-10, 10:32 PM
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DVD Talk review of 'Dragnet 1969: Season Three'

I read Paul Mavis's DVD review of Dragnet 1969: Season Three at http://www.dvdtalk.com/reviews/read.php?ID=45710 and...The surreal highlight of the season has to be the conclusion of DR-31, when the thief/comic book geek collapses, weeping, against a wall and leaves the traces of his tears on the face of his favorite superhero poster. Can you imagine another TV director of the period pulling a stunt like that? The runner-up moment would be from DR-06, when Friday proposes to serve the Gannons their dinner on collapsible TV trays.

On a more serious note, one of the more striking aspects of all Webb shows but particularly Dragnet is his absolute contempt for the wealthy. They're invariably portrayed lazy, condescending moral degenerates. It's an interesting point of view for someone frequently pigeonholed as an arch-conservative.
Old 12-03-10, 06:26 AM
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Re: DVD Talk review of 'Dragnet 1969: Season Three'

Love the weeping poster, but I'm not sure about him singling out the rich specifically as "lazy, condescending moral degenerates" as you write, for two reasons. First, the people he encounters in this color season come from all socio-economic backgrounds...and he has problems with all their behavior: rich, middle class, or poor--and only when it deviates from "The Law." A good example is Narcotics - DR-16. It's a wealthy businessman with time on his hands who starts Smarteens, a drug-awareness program that meets with unqualified gratitude from Friday.

Second, your feeling that his "contempt for the rich" makes for "an interesting point of view for someone frequently pigeonholed as an arch-conservative," exactly proves the point I was making in the review: this skewed view of what a "conservative" supposedly believes or supports. The implication of your statement that it's "interesting" that an arch-conservative wouldn't have sympathy for the rich implies irony because either he or she is rich themself, or that his or her beliefs support the propagation of the wealthy and their concerns. In other words: conservatism is the stronghold of the rich, and vice versa, and someone like Webb is unusual because he deviates from some perceived (and inaccurate) "norm" of conservative belief and behavior (I recommend Professor Arthur C. Brooks' fine book, Who Really Cares, on some eye-opening research on income levels, volunteerism, and charity donations among self-described liberals and conservatives).

The generalization from the media and from left-leaning politicians and commentators and writers in today's hyper-partisan world is that liberals "own" issues like support for minority and women's rights, responsibility in gun ownership, and disapproval of militias, so arch-conservative Webb's alignment with these beliefs is somehow contradictory. Which of course is nonsense.
Old 12-03-10, 02:35 PM
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Re: DVD Talk review of 'Dragnet 1969: Season Three'

Awesome review, Paul! Wow, you really encapsulated the reasons I love this show. While I do have fun with the surface "campiness" of some aspects of the show, as you rightly point out the show stands up well to deeper scrutiny.
Old 12-03-10, 03:54 PM
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Re: DVD Talk review of 'Dragnet 1969: Season Three'

Thanks! Really nice to hear that!

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