Home Improvement (Season 2) DVD Review

Nominated for 9 Golden Globes and 34 Emmys, including 2 for Outstanding Comedy Series, Home Improvement was the number one family-friendly comedy for most of the 1990’s decade. Created by three writers who worked on wide range of sitcoms, such as The Cosby Show (1984) and Roseanne (1988), Home Improvement is one of a number of 1990’s smash hit sitcoms built around a lead character who stars as a stand-up comic in real life. Some of the other series include Seinfeld (1990), The Drew Carey Show (1995), Everybody Loves Raymond (1996), and King Of Queens (1998) among others. One of the trailblazers in this area, Home Improvement ranked in the Top 10 among Nielsen-rated shows for seven of its eight seasons (it ranked #11 in Season 7). One notable tidbit of trivia is that Sears was approached to sponsor the show which would’ve put Craftsman tools in the hands of Tim “The Toolman” Taylor (as opposed to the fictional “Binford” brand), but Sears rejected the offer because they feared Tim Allen’s prior conviction on a drug charge might be interpreted as unfriendly to families (funny, since Home Improvement later fell under the moniker of the Walt Disney Company)…

Home Improvement centers around the life of Tim Taylor (Tim Allen), a home improvement expert who hosts his own local TV show “Tool Time” on cable access. Tim and his wife Jill (Patricia Richardson) live in a house in the suburbs of Detroit, Michigan with their three boys Brad (Zachery Ty Bryan), Randy (Jonathan Taylor Thomas), and Mark (Taran Noah Smith). On “Tool Time,” Tim is flanked by the flannel-clad, easy-going Al Borland (Richard Karn) who is often the butt of Tim’s jokes and harbors a neurotic tendency toward perfectionism. At home, Tim’s numerous domestic missteps lead him to continuously seek the advice of his well-traveled, near-perfect neighbor Wilson (Earl Hindman), whose lower face is never seen (only his eyes)… Marked by Tim’s abundant clumsiness as a home improvement guru and his inept ability to display sensitivity toward his wife, Home Improvement is a classic sitcom that relies on formulaic episodes of slapstick humor and zinging one-liners. It’s a formula that works, but grows tiresome as the show progresses…

The Home Improvement (Season 2) DVD features a number of hilarious episodes including the season premiere “Read My Hips” in which Jill plans a romantic evening at home for herself and Tim, but Tim throws a wrench in her plans when he spends the evening hanging out at a bar with Al and the guys from A&B Construction. When he finally returns home, Jill is upset, fearing that the romance has left their relationship. Meanwhile, Brad ponders the true meaning of Jennifer’s physical assaults. Does she really want to kiss him? Other notable episodes from Season 2 include “Where There’s a Will, There’s a Way” in which Jill finds out that Tim never put the finishing touches on his legal will, and “Shooting Three to Make Tutu” in which Jill insists that Tim take Mark to the ballet despite the fact that he has front-row tickets to the Pistons game…

Do You Know the Top Three Golf Aids to Improve Your Golf Swing?

If you play golf, you are always looking for a way to improve your golf swing. Without a doubt, the best way to achieve the perfect golf swing is to get good quality golf swing instructions. Unfortunately, not all instructors are created equal. Even when you find a good trainer, he can only take you so far. To master your golf lessons, you still need to do a lot of work on your own. Luckily, there are inexpensive tools and golf aids that can help you.

The most important principle to improve your golf swing is practice. Correct practice. Lots and lots of practice. The top three golf aids listed below are selected with this central principle in mind – to give you the ability to do lots of correct practice.

1. More golf balls.

To get lots of practice, you need lots of golf balls. How many do you have? Ten? Twenty? I say that’s not enough. You need at least a hundred. You need to be able to just swing away at the ball, without having to go pick them up. If you just hit the ball five or ten times every time you practice, you will never improve.

A quick check at Amazon shows that a dozen balls sell for around $15 to $30. Wilson’s Staff Fifty, which travels 250 yards (as tested by CNN’s Golf Lab), costs $15. If you don’t have the budget for new golf balls, secondhand balls are a good choice. Modern golf balls are very resilient and can last you very many games. Amazon offers good quality used golf balls like Titleists NXT Tour, (which travels 254 yards), at $37 for 36 balls. If you look carefully, you can get even better deals on eBay, effectively paying $0.50 per ball.

2. Golf net.

Whether you hit your balls at the driving range or at home, a net is a must. At the driving range, having your own net helps you to easily recover your golf balls after your practice session. After all, you don’t want to hunt for your golf balls every time you finish your practice, do you? And there is no way for you to practice at home without a net.

You can buy a golf net at your local golf shop, or look for a good deal from Amazon on eBay. You’ll find that some nets are easy to set up and take down, but a bit flimsy. Others are sturdy but difficult to set up. What you get will depend on your needs. If you have a fixed place to practice at home, buy the sturdier net. If you need to take your net to the driving range, then pick the one which is easier to put up and dismantle.

You can even make your own golf net. Just use a double or triple layer of fine-meshed fishing net and you ready for lots of practice.

3. Digicam/Videocam.

The third essential (and inexpensive) golf aid is a digital camera. Set it up on its tripod or a folding chair and turn it on. Record your golf swings and play them back in slow motion. Find out where your mistakes are and fix them your next practice session. Fix your mistakes one by one and improve your golf swing step by step. Compare the playback of your swing against a good reference – either borrow a good golf swing book from your local library or look at the videos on the PGA’s web-site.