Walt Disney Treasures: Zorro - The Complete Second Season
With his sword, whip and trusty steed Tornado, Zorro continued to fight the forces of evil in the second season of Walt Disney's legendary classic. The final 39 swashbuckling episodes saw even more children dressing up as the sly fox Zorro in Spanish and making the sign of the Z The second season aired from October 9, 1958, through July 2, 1959, and is presented here -- newly restored and remastered in its original black-and-white format. To add even more thrills to this six-disc set, we've included two rarely seen one-hour specials shown on Walt Disney's anthology series WALT DISNEY PRESENTS -- ZORRO: THE POSTPONED WEDDING and ZORRO: AULD AQUAINTANCE. You'll meet Guy Williams in a profile of the actor who became an overnight star in the role he was born to play. And you'll meet his stunt double, Buddy Van Horn. Featuring exclusive introductions by film historian Leonard Maltin, this is a timeless collection from generations past for generations to come.
- Amazon Sales Rank: #21703 in DVD
- Released on: 2009-11-03
- Rating: NR (Not Rated)
- Aspect ratio: 1.33:1
- Number of discs: 6
- Formats: Black & White, Restored, NTSC, Full Screen
- Original language: English
- Running time: 975 minutes
Time to catch some more Z's! Just how hot was Zorro as it galloped into its second season? Check out "A Trip to the Archives," one of the bonus features included on this collectible set that's a must-own for every TV-loving boomer. Disney historian Leonard Maltin and Guy Williams Jr. peruse a treasure trove of licensed Zorro merchandise, including the expected (lunchboxes, mask and whip, vinyl wallets) to the unexpected (neckties and roller skates!). And how hot was Guy Williams, so dashing as the masked avenger Zorro? The same kids who donned coonskin caps to play Davy Crockett were carving Z's into their school desks. Annette Funicello, America's teen sweetheart, had a crush on him, prompting Walt Disney to cast her in one of season 2's story arcs as a present for her 16th birthday. Funicello stars as a pueblo visitor searching for her father, whom no one seems to know, but someone is trying to scare her out of town. In addition to being rescued by Zorro, she gets to sing a song, "The Lonely Guitar." Several character actors beloved by vintage-TV buffs appear this season, including Lee Van Cleef, Tige Andrews (Captain Greer on The Mod Squad), Robert Vaughn, Richard Deacon, and Ricardo Montalban. Season 2 tinkers a bit with the series' successful formula. Beginning with the episode "The Gay Caballero," a new opening composed of scenes for that week's episode replaced the rousing theme song that helped put Zorro on the map. There were more, and shorter, story arcs. Zorro was even, briefly, given a love interest (Jolene Brand as Anna Maria Verdugo). But the accent remains on adventure with spectacularly staged fights (another bonus feature is an interview with Guy Williams's stuntman, Buddy Van Horn) and daring rescues. This set contains two Zorro rarities, near-hour-long adventures that were originally broadcast in 1961 on Walt Disney Presents and have never been available on home video: "The Postponed Wedding," featuring Funicello, and "Auld Acquaintance," costarring Montalban and Ross Martin (The Wild Wild West). Zorro has aged well thanks to its historical setting in 1820s California. There is nothing like it on television, and now all those former Zorro-wannabes can introduce their own children (and grandchildren) to the timeless pleasures of Zorro, which delivers on its promise of "never-to-be-forgotten thrills." --Donald Liebenson
A Treat for Disney Zorro Fans!
The Complete Second Season is the definitive version that Disney Zorro fans have waited years for. Covering the 39 episodes that comprise season #2 (1958-1959), this limited edition (and numbered) 6-disc set of 30,000 includes a Certificate of Authenticity, a collectible pin (very handsome showing a silver sword with a shadow of Zorro & his horse superimposed on top), as well as a black-and-white photo postcard showing Guy Williams in his Zorro costume. A booklet outlining the contents of the set can also be found here. The set comes handsomely encased in a black metal tin, fitting of this B&W series where the hero wears an all-black costume.
A 3:29 intro by Leonard Maltin introduces the episodes and gives a brief overview of the series and these particular episodes along with the extras on these discs. The remastering is evident on these episodes. The picture is clear and so is the sound; naturally, with the way it was originally recording, a digital surround experience is not possible, but the Dolby Digital recording is crisp, clear, and the score sounds better than it has in years. And no...there are no colorized versions here. Just the genuine black and white originals.
Besides the 39 episodes (starting with "Welcome to Monterey", original air date of 10/9/1958 and finishing with #39 "Finders Keepers", original air date of 6/2/1959), there is a 6th disc of bonus material. Here you will find 2 hour long episodes:
1. "Zorro: The Postponed Wedding," original air date of 1/1/1961, from Walt's anthology TV series "Walt Disney Presents." Clocking in at 49:04, this episode features Annette Funicello, who is beginning to mature into a very pretty young lady.
2. "Zorro: Auld Acquaintance," original air date of 4/2/1961, from Walt's anthology TV series "Walt Disney Presents." Starring Ricardo Montalban & Ross Martin ("Wild Wild West") this episode is 49:09 long.
There is also a featurette entitled, "Behind The Mask" (7:52) which is a short look at Zorro's leading man, Guy Williams. Also known as Professor Robinson on "Lost In Space," Williams is often regarded as the quintessential Zorro. Well-liked by his costars (Suzanne Lloyd is quoted here as saying Williams was "one of the most charming professional men I ever had the pleasure of working with"), he began as a model and then became a contract player at Universal. An injury sidelined him and caused him to take up fencing. A call to audition for Disney's Zorro was a fortuitous break for the actor, and catapulted him into stardom. Zorro's stunt double, Buddy Van Horn is also interviewed here, along with Williams' son, Guy Williams, Jr., who obviously has many fond memories of his father and this particular role. Interestingly enough, it is recounted that most action scenes were shot on Fridays so that any injuries would have the entire weekend to heal! Rare color movies of Williams performing at Disneyland as Zorro are shown here; Van Horn recalls them staying at the Disneyland Hotel and taking advantage of the carte blanche they had at the Hotel. Author Antoinette Lane, Guy Williams: The Man Behind the Mask, is also interviewed about Williams, recounting what a role model he was, playing a father figure in "Lost in Space" and a protector in "Zorro."
Finally take a trip to the Walt Disney archives in Burbank on the studio lot (10:55). Leonard Maltin and Guy Williams, Jr. display original costumes and sword from the show, calling particular attention to the lavish detail (genuine silver thread, exquisite embroidery, and heavy wool) that is evident in these pieces made by Western Costume. Two costumes are also shown with the famous "Z" emblazoned on them, including one for Henry Calvin's oafish and comedic Sergeant Garcia. Next up a generous sampling of the more than 500 licensed items that were sold to promote the Disney series, including lunch boxes, rings, child costumes, and even roller skates!
This fantastic set is a must-have for Disney fans both new and old alike. Quality entertainment presented in a quality package.
Zorro the third release... heaven help my wallet from dishonest Disney!
So finally the release is happening that Disney kept leading us on saying would not happen, so guess what kids? You want Zorro you have to buy it from the Disney Movie Club. Disney touted Zorro being a "Disney Club Exclusive", so like an idiot I believed them, and went and bought each of the 5 dvd sets that comprised season one at $20-$30 a pop from the club, then they decided to release the full season into a boxed set of the same discs for cheaper, again still only to the Movie club chump members like me. These versions were in the horrible colorization they did for the Disney Channel some years ago and had not a single extra, but Disney still led on this was all they would have available for Zorro as it "wasn't a big seller" according the folks I called at the Disney Club. Now lookee here lo and behold somehow magically Disney seems to think there might be more milk to the cow of this franchise and is willing to squeeze it for all its worth. Part of me is very happy with these releases, but part of me wants to curse Disney's dark soul in their duplicity and dirty double dealings. This is not the way to treat loyal customers: lie, lie and lie some more if it makes more money. I love old Disney entertainment, but man do I hate the modern company that dishes it out.
All of my "old man ranting" aside, it is nice that finally Zorro is getting the release it deserves, I just wish...beg... hope.. plead that they be more honest in the dealings they have with fans. I seriously feel used AGAIN, I really don't feel like I can ever trust them again after all the times I have and have been let down (like the edits in the Disneyland USA set when it was CLEARLY advertised in print ads as being "original and uncut".) Not to mention the incredibly limited numbers for the last set compared to the entire rest of the Treasures series. Is it so wrong as a customer to expect full honesty and integrity from a company that constantly eschews the same morals in their products? Do they want my trust and loyalty or just a chance to rape my wallet?
The second and final season of the hit show "Zorro". Action-packed, exciting and cool!
With Walt Disney's "Zorro" popular television series ending in 1959 after 78-episodes, for its 50th year Anniversary, Walt Disney is giving the classic action/comedy series special treatment with the "Walt Disney Treasures" release of "ZORRO - The Complete First Season (1957-1958) and "ZORRO - The Complete Second Season (1958-1959).
For the second season, this marks the tenth Walt Disney Treasures release in which a limited amount of DVD copies were printed (in this case - 30,000 were printed) and where the majority of the "Walt Disney Treasures" releases were animated releases, these two Zorro releases will be the first to receive an all-black tin case release.
This release contains the 39 episodes from the second season on five DVD discs and each episode has been digitally remastered. Also, included are "Zoro: The Postponed Wedding" which aired January 1, 1961 on Walt's anthology TV series "Walt Disney Presents", "Zoro: Auld Acquaintance" aired on April 2, 1961 on "Walt Disney Presents", "Behind the Mask" about the life of Guy Williams featuring interviews with surviving cast and crew members, an author and his son Guy Williams Jr. and "A Trip to the Archives" featuring Leonard Maltin and Guy Williams Jr. visiting the Walt Disney Archives. Included with each release is a certificate of authenticity signed by Roy E. Disney and Leonard Maltin (who personally selected the rare offerings in this set), a publicity still of Zorro and a Zorro pin (featuring the memorable silhouette of Zorro and Tornado the horse) and a booklet with episode listings for the second season and more.
"Zorro" was the first major series that film man Walt Disney was very enthusiastic about. Ratings were terrific with the first season earning over 35% and the second season earning over 40% in the ratings which is phenomenal but the only reason why the series was pulled off the air was because Disney was pursuing color and ABC wasn't and thus, because of this disagreement, both "Zorro" and "The Mickey Mouse Club" were pulled off the air.
The story of Zorro first appeared back in 1920 as part of a silent film starring Douglas Fairbanks. For the next 35 years, there would be several "Zorro" related films that were released. But it was in Sept. 11, 1957 when Walt Disney introduced the character to audiences through the 4th Anniversary show of Walt Disney Presents and four weeks later, Zorro would debut on ABC on Oct. 10th. With the success of the first season of "Zorro", the second and final season was a ratings hit.
"Zorro" takes place during the time of Spanish occupation of California (pre-1820 before Mexico won independence for California and took control of the state). Where members of the Spanish colonial government are oppressing the Mexicans and Indians who occupy the land. Meanwhile, Don Diego de la Vega (played by Guy Williams, "Lost In Space", "Captain Sinbad", "Bonanza"), a scholar who trained in Spain makes his return to California along with his mute sidekick Bernardo (played by Gene Sheldon) and to see how people are being oppressed by Spanish rule. With the success of the first season, the second season would feature guest stars such as Cesar Romero, Annette Funicello, Richard Anderson, Jonathan Harris, Jeff York and Ricardo Montalban.
Also, a few episodes in the second season would be three-parters instead of all stand-episodes.
The following episodes are included in "Zorro - The Complete Second Season (1958-1959): The following are spoiler-less summaries of each episode.
* EPISODE 40 - Welcome to Monterey - Don Diego is nearly robbed and thus he tries to find out who is behind it.
* EPISODE 41 - Zorro Rides Alone - Gold is stolen and Zorro must find out who is responsible.
* EPISODE 42 - Horse of Another Color - A Senorita is being held hostage and Zorro must save her.
* EPISODE 43 - The Senorita Makes a Choice - The Senorita and her father are held hostage.
* EPISODE 44 - Rendezvous at Sundown - Continuing from the last episode and Romero's treachery.
* EPISODE 45 - The New Order - Corruption takes place in Monterey and Zorro must free the oppressed.
* EPISODE 46 - An Eye for an Eye - Zorro risks his life in helping two people out.
* EPISODE 47 - Zorro and the Flag of Truce - The governor makes a pledge for Joaquin Casanada that no harm will come to him. But the plan goes awry.
* EPISODE 48 - Ambush - The treacherous storyline between Rico, Casanada concludes in this episode.
* EPISODE 49 - The Practical Joker - A practical joker's antics puts Don Diego in jail.
* EPISODE 50 - The Flaming Arrow - An impostor masquerades as Zorro.
* EPISODE 51 - Zorro Fights a Duel - Ricardo challenges Zorro to a duel.
* EPISODE 52 - Amnesty for Zorro - A plot is hatched in order for Zorro to reveal his true identity.
* EPISODE 53 - The Runaways - A couple in love are forced to become fugitives from their own people.
* EPISODE 54 - The Iron Box - The mystery of the iron box and its shipment of gold is revealed and banditos try to steal it.
* EPISODE 55 - The Gay Caballero - Cesar Romero stars as the gay caballero. Is he a thief? Zorro vs. the gay caballero.
* EPISODE 56 - Tornado is Missing- The gay caballero, Don Esteban steals Zorro's horse, Tornado.
* EPISODE 57 - Zorro Versus Cupid - Don Esteban proposes to a woman that Don Diego cares about.
* EPISODE 58 - The Legend of Zorro - Don Esteban tries to win Margarita and to marry her for her fortune.
* EPISODE 59 - Spark of Revenge - Someone has murdered and Zorro tries to find out who is responsible.
* EPISODE 60 - The Missing Father - Annette Funicello stars as the Senorita Anita Cabrillo who tries to find her father.
* EPISODE 61 - Please Believe Me - Senorita Anita Cabrillo is in danger and Zorro must protect her.
* EPISODE 62 - The Brooch - The third and final part of the search for Senorita Anita Cabrillo's father.
* EPISODE 63 - Zorro and the Mountain Man - A mountain man arrives in Los Angeles and a prank sets him off towards the wrong path.
* EPISODE 64 - The Hound of the Sierras - A dog that is trained to kill and go after the mountain man.
* EPISODE 65 - Manhunt - Don Carlos goes after the mountain man.
* EPISODE 66 - The Man From Spain - The King's emissary arrives in town and encounters Zorro.
* EPISODE 67 - Treasure for the King - A man's greed leads to a confrontation with Zorro.
* EPISODE 68 - Exposing the Tyrant - An innocent man is being arrested for high treason and smuggling.
* EPISODE 69 - Zorro Takes a Dare - Zorro is unmasked by his enemy.
* EPISODE 70 - An Affair of Honor - A man assaults Don Diego's father and leads Don Diego in a fight to the death for honor.
* EPISODE 71 - The Sergeant Sees Red - A priceless chalice of gold makes a man a thief.
* EPISODE 72 - Invitation to Death - Someone tries to murder the governor of California.
* EPISODE 73 - The Captain Regrets - Capitan Arrellanos is up to no good and is plotting something sinister.
* EPISODE 74 - The Masquerade for Murder - A masquerade party is held but among the one masked is a killer.
* EPISODE 75 - Long Live the Governor - The new Capitan plots to kill the governor.
* EPISODE 76 - The Fortune Teller - A fortune teller's card reveals Garcia's future and it's the card of death.
* EPISODE 77 - Senior China Boy - What brings a Chinese boy to the town of Los Angeles?
* EPISODE 78 - Finders Keepers - A man is shot, a Seniorita is robbed and the man says Bernardo is responsible.
VIDEO & AUDIO:
"ZORRO - The Complete Second Season (1958-1959) - Walt Disney Treasures" is featured in B&W and has been Digitally Remastered. The series looks great for a television series that is over 50 years old. For the most part, the blacks are nice and deep and grays are well-done. There is a fine layer of grain and occasional dirt can be seen but for the most part, it is limited and I don't see any major banding or compression although the opening theme is a bit grainy. But for the most part, the episodes look great.
As for the audio, the series is presented in Dolby Digital. The series is front channel driven and dialogue and music is clear. For my preference, I watched the series with my receive set with stereo on all channels.
Subtitles are featured in English SDH.
"ZORRO - The Complete Second Season (1958-1959) - Walt Disney Treasures" features an exclusive introduction by film historian Leonard Maltin on Disc 1. On Disc 6, the following special features are included:
* ZORRO: The Postponed Wedding (Original Air Date: January 1, 1961) - (51:16) Due to the series being pulled off ABC (due to disagreements of Disney pursuing color and ABC wanting to stay with B&W), the series made its return in the New Year (1961) via a two-part one hour special. The following is the first special. In this special, Annete Funicello plays the character of Costancia.
* ZORRO: Auld Acquaintance (Original Air Date: April 2, 1961) - (49:00) Due to the series being pulled off ABC (due to disagreements of Disney pursuing color and ABC wanting to stay with B&W), the series made its return in the New Year (1961) via a two-part one hour special. The following is the second special and stars Ricardo Montalban.
* Behind the Mask - (7:52) In this featurette, cast members talk about working with Guy Williams and how he was as suave as Don Diego. Guy Williams, Jr. talks about his father and we learn about his life up to his death from author Antoinette G. Lane (author of "Guy Williams: The Man Behind the Mask").
* A Trip to the Archives - (10:55) Leonard Maltin visiting the Walt Disney archives with Guy Williams Jr. and seeing the classic Zorro outfit and talking about memorabilia for the show.
"Zorro" is an entertaining and classic hero-based series. What made the series so exciting is that Walt Disney was behind the project and that the series was given the opportunity to have a higher production value. So, you get that feel of an authentic old California during Spanish dominance. The stories are light-hearted, fun, humorous but also very clever. The high production values of the series were well-captured as evident in the set, production and costume design. As well, as the music which helps emphasize the comedic or action moments in the series.
Although I was familiar with "Zorro" through the films, I have never seen any of the television episodes. So, to finally watch them after hearing so much about Guy Williams stellar performance as the swashbuckling hero, I can see why many people enjoyed this series.
I can see how much Disney believed in this series and also spending money necessary to make sure that old California was presented well through the production design, the costumes and also the dialect. I actually thought that a lot of the people on the show were Latino but later finding out that Guy Williams (Don Diego/Zorro) was Italian, Gene Sheldon (Bernard) and Henry Calvin (who played Sergeant Garcia) were Americans and Don Diamond (Corp. Reyes) was Russian. But the series was also instrumental in hiring many Latino to have roles in the film, not only for this season but for the next.
Don Diego is the classic hero/vigilante that was created way before Bruce Wayne/Batman and he was a Robin Hood of sorts. Taking down corruption and even helping out the poor. He was a hero that many people identified with at the time and have heard from adults who remember those years when they would dress up as Zorro because they idolized him. Granted, there are man portrayals of Don Diego in film and books but Disney was able to capture that flair of coolness with Guy Williams as the hero and for the most part, he is a hero that truly rocks! It's been over 50 years since the series debuted on television and watching it, I can see why people enjoyed the series. It's a well-done, enjoyable and highly entertaining series that captures that sense of adventure, action and tuning in for each episode watching Zorro take on those who would oppress the people, meeting the beautiful women but at the same time, remaining a gentleman. I'll go even further to say that the show also had cultural impact.
"Zorro - The Complete Second Season" was much different than the first in the fact is that there is more action sequences and also more special guest stars with Mouseketeer Annette Funicello, Cesar Romero and many others playing a character role in the series. Also, unlike the first season which were all stand-alone episodes, the second series had a few episodes which were three-parters. And these slight changes definitely help benefit the series in the ratings as it scored up to 40% which is incredible, especially for a series that is 39 episodes long.
Overall, if you were a fan of "Zorro" or are interested in classic television series, this series is quite fun to watch and I watched it alongside my six-year-old who was also entertained by the series. The set as part of the Walt Disney Treasures line was pretty cool, especially the black tin case and the certificate of authenticity noting the limited production of the series. But as a person who does watch classics, it's great to see Walt Disney release one of the highest rated television shows of all time on DVD. Definitely recommended!