Undeclared: The Complete Series

When Judd Apatow's incredible Freaks and Geeks was prematurely pulled off the air he went back to the drawing board and delivered Undeclared, which at the time seemed like a compromise. This new show aired on Fox, was only 30 minutes long and felt like it was trying to tap into the mainstream crowd by being a little more absurd and fast-paced thanks to guest spots by Will Ferrell, Adam Sandler, Ben Stiller and Amy Poehler. Looking back at the series, which was also yanked off the air after one season, it might actually have been better than Freaks and Geeks, and that's saying a lot. What makes Undeclared so addictive is the relationship between the characters and how the writers seemed to have nailed down the reality of college life and how students interact with each other. There's no focus on the jocks, cheerleaders and very little on fraternities, and when they do touch upon those things you are looking from the outside through the eyes of scrawny Steven, the adorable Lizzie and Rachel, and best friends Ron, Lloyd and Marshall. The writing is sharp, the jokes hilarious and the scenarios involving awkward dating amongst friends and being social outcasts are painfully real, making Undeclared one of the finest moments in recent television. How a show that had Jon Favreau guest direct an episode gets cancelled is mind-boggling. The DVD is packed with commentaries on every episode all of them are compelling, especially young Jay Baruchel (Steven) admitting that he is still a huge fan of his own show and recites dialogue from the Will Ferrell episode like people quote The Simpsons. Each episode also contains several deleted scenes, including some unaired footage of Millie from Freaks and Geeks playing a safety patroller and a hilarious montage of Marshall listing off all the celebrity nude clips he captured on his infamous video collection. There's a bonus disc of extras that includes a Loudon Wainwright performance, as well as audition reels, rehearsals and an un-produced script from the second season involving Marshall becoming a national celebrity after his projectile vomiting is caught on video tape. There's also a Q&A at the Museum of Television & Radio with the majority of people involved in the show taking part that has Apatow half-jokingly predicting the show's cancellation while they were still on air. Should have knocked on wood. (Shout Factory/SMV)