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Happy Days: The Third Season

Score: 88%
Rating: Not Rated
Publisher: Paramount
Region: 1
Media: DVD/4
Running Time: 9 Hrs., 40 Mins. (580 Mins.)
Genre: TV Series/Family
Audio: Dolby Digital Restored English

Subtitles: None


  • Full Screen Format
  • "The Second Annivesary Show"

I have to admit that it's been quite some time since I've seen Happy Days. It was quite refreshing to find that after all these many years, Happy Days stands the test of time. Not only that, but at a few points during Season Three, I actually found myself laughing out loud - not in a fake-y Internet shorthand way, but in an honest-to-goodness, slightly embarrassing and hoping I don't disturb somebody way.

For the collectors out there, Happy Days: Season Three features several noteworthy firsts. Season Three is the first use of phrase, "sit on it" (in Ep.40), which becomes an often used and almost hallmark phrase of Happy Days. Fonzie (Henry Winkler) calls Joanie "Shortcake" for the first time in Episode 43; this settles in as Fonzie's nickname for Joanie (Erin Moran). Happy Days: Season Three is also the first time Richie Cunningham (Ron Howard) plays the saxophone (Ep.53).

Happy Days: Season Three features several new characters, as well. Episode 42 marks the first appearance of Pat Morita as Matsumo "Arnold" Takahashi (Ep.42), whose comedic delivery was responsible for a few of the above mentioned truly hilarious moments. Ed Peck makes his first appearance as Officer Kirk (Ep.46), an overbearing ex-marine police officer that gives Richie and his friends a hard time. Season Three is the first appearance of Penny Marshall as Laverne DeFazio and Cindy Williams as Shirley Feeney (Ep.49); of course, these two later end up starring in their own spin-off show, "Laverne and Shirley."

Unfortunately, there are no real "special features" such as interviews or behind-the-scenes featurettes to be found in Happy Days: Season Three.Season Three does, however, feature "The Happy Days 2nd Anniversary Special" (Ep.56), where Fonzie and the Cunninghams share memories of the best times they've shared since Fonzie moved into the Cunninghams' garage in a "best of" clip episode. This was a sort-of look back at the year in Happy Days, but it was aired as an episode (original airdate: January 12, 1976), not extra material added for the making of the DVD. I do wish there had been some documentary or interview features on the Happy Days: Season Three DVD, especially as Happy Days has become a part of television Americana.

Fans looking for some great episodes are likely to enjoy Happy Days: Season Three, but collectors who have to have special features in anything that goes into their collection may want to hold off in hopes of a collector's edition in the future. I don't know if such a product will ever be released, but there isn't any of the collectible candy that keeps these collectors happy. If you're simply looking to relive the nostalgia of Happy Days or to share the comedic antics of a more tame America with your children, Happy Days: Season Three might have just what you're looking for.

-Geck0, GameVortex Communications
AKA Robert Perkins

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