Wednesday, April 17, 2013

TV Series "China Beach" Finally on DVD

Of all the TV shows I have watched through the years "China Beach" is the one I remember the most.  There was something about the eyes of  Army nurse  First Lieutenant Colleen McMurphy as played by Dana Delany that I can not get out of my mind. She and most of the other characters are staff at a Army hospital and rest and recreation area in  South Vietnam named "China Beach" during the Vietnam War.  The music soundtrack was from that era and was an important part of the show.  One of the reasons it has taken so long for "China Beach" to make it to DVD was getting the rights to all of the songs.  Time/Life has done that and the following is their press release:

From the moment China Beach debuted in 1988, with its iconic opening credits set to the Supremes’ “Reflections” as its theme song, it was hailed as groundbreaking television. In an era of testosterone-driven war movies, China Beach delivered a unique perspective: the Vietnam War through the eyes of women!

Never before released on DVD or VHS! You can now own the entire TV series with this deluxe collector’s edition housed in a beautiful display box. Includes 268 classic hit songs as they were played in the original broadcast.

This long-awaited set features over 10 hours of new bonus features, including a reunion with the China Beach cast, including Dana Delany (First Lieutenant Colleen McMurphy), Marg Helgenberger (K.C. Kolowski), Michael Boatman (PVT Sam Beckett), Robert Picardo (Captain Dr. Dick Richard) and many more.

And, you'll enjoy an exclusive booklet, "Tales from the Five & Dime,” with character bios, interview transcripts, letters from vets and much more

I can still remember the episode where LT McMurphy is trying to save the life of a American airman who has been brought to the hospital only to find the only thing holding his body together his is flight outfit.

From Wikipedia:

China Beach is an American dramatic television series set at an evacuation hospital during the Vietnam War. The title refers to My Khe beach in the city of Đà Nẵng, Vietnam, which was nicknamed "China Beach" in English by American and Australian soldiers during the Vietnam War. The ABC TV drama aired for four seasons, from 1988 to 1991....

the series looks at the Vietnam War from a unique perspective: that of the women, military personnel and civilians, who were present during the conflict.......

Set in a Vietnam locale nicknamed "Bac My An Beach" at the 510th Evacuation Hospital and R&R (the "Five-and-Dime" Rest & Recreation) facility, the cast of characters includes US Army doctors and nurses, officers, soldiers, Red Cross volunteers, and civilian personnel (American, French, and Vietnamese). The series also featured the experiences of the characters when they returned to the U.S., either on leave or at the end of their tour of duty. The show did not shy away from showing the gruesomeness of war, providing a very gritty view of the experience there. Unusual story-telling methods were sometimes used: scenes presented in reverse chronology; insertion of animated cartoons to express a character's state of mind; alternating between interviews with former military nurses and scripted scenes; and a visit by the cast to the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall in Washington, D.C.......

First Lieutenant (later Captain) Colleen McMurphy, USA; Catholic girl from Kansas and nurse with the 510th Evac Hospital in Vietnam during the late 1960s. A composite of various real-life Vietnam War nurses, the character illustrates their courage, kindness, and sacrifices during the war, as well as the severe emotional scarring of non-combatant personnel during and following military service; several episodes feature the veterans in their own words, intercut with the storyline.
Priced at $200.00 the price is high but there are 60 episodes of an hour each  and 2 episodes of two hours each.