Full House: Season 8

I could spend this review pointing out the obvious flaws in this sitcom. It’s cheesy, predictable, and saccharine. It is almost impossible, I would even go so far as to say totally impossible, to dispute the show's corniness. So you either choose to accept that and eviscerate the show when evaluating it, or you choose not to. Personally, having grown up with this show, I can accept it. This season was the last of the show's run. To the writers' credit, they took the opportunity to take advantage of the characters’ advancing ages to tackle some more mature issues. For example, episode 9 "Stephanie's Wild Ride,” finds character Stephanie (Jodie Sweetin) narrowly avoiding a car accident when her sister refuses to let her ride with a bunch of reckless teenagers. Episodes also touch on the perils of underage drinking, the difficulties of make-out parties, and how hard it is for parents to detach from their young children on the first day of preschool. The writers were obviously running low in their bag of comic gags, however, as too many of the "comic” moments centred around young identical twins Nicky and Alex (Blake and Dylan Tuomy-Wilhoit), who were extremely cute but never actually funny. Centering the season premiere around the misadventures of the family dog, Comet, also spoke to the dwindling story inspiration. The season hit its peak with Episode 11, "Arrest Ye Merry Gentlemen,” the Christmas episode, which featured a terrific guest performance by Mickey Rooney as a curmudgeonly old man who finds the spirit of the season. For all its faults, Full House represented a kind of eternal innocence, a world where slapstick and silly humour reigned. Take it for all its faults, the family represented something honest and wholesome. I implore even the most jaded cynic not to see the value in that kind of honest sentimentality, where we can end every half hour with a lesson learned, some sappy violin music, and a hug. Unfortunately for ardent fans, there are no special features on this set. (Warner Bros.)