Tour of Duty - Cult Laboratories

The ONLY edition featuring the original hit-filled soundtrack.

The Vietnam Era

Head over to the superb VIETNAM WAR ERA photo site for a huge selection of amazing photgraphs that bring the war and it's times to life.

From the site: "In this blog you will find assorted material all related to the conflict in Vietnam. This includes the entire story of America’s involvement, from Harry Truman and Ho Chi Minh all the way until the evacuation of the US embassy in Saigon."

See history behind Tour of Duty. THE VIETNAM WAR ERA - A TRIBUTE TO THE VIETNAM WAR


None Of Them Will Survive

CULT TV make an excellent point in their review of Tour of Duty season one. Unlike many TV shows where familiarity with characters is key, in Tour of Duty, everyone feels vulnerable and it doesn't matter how central their role is to the show, they can still be killed in a heartbeat:

“Fans of Spielberg’s military films and series should definitely seek Tour of Duty out. It is excellently acted, excitingly directed and very atmospheric. Just do not get too attached to any of the characters because you genuinely fear that none of them will survive from one episode to the next, which is very rare for a TV series.”

READ THE FULL REVIEW HERE


Watching Tour of Duty pt 13

“Although often called upon to perform in hostile battle zones, all USO entertainers worked on a voluntary basis.”

The USO is an organisation that exists to boost troop morale. Find out more HERE

A group of entertainers end up lost in the jungle after their helicopter crashes in this episode and a dangerous rescue mission throws up some interesting issues around the combat.

One of the unlucky singers is a man raised in the army life whose ill health has prevented him from soldiering. When he suddenly finds himself in a combat situation, he quickly gets himself on good terms with the men and attempts to go native. Unfortunately, his gungho attitude and naivety leads to serious trouble.

We hear so much about the Vietnam combat and the protest movement that sprang up to campaign against it, but little is heard about the young men who wholeheartedly believed in what America was doing. Tour of Duty, with it's extended running time, has the space to explore every aspect of the war and it's interesting to meet a character who feels so let down by life because he can't fight rather than someone who didn't burn their draft card in time.

Classic songs in this episode:

JUST MY IMAGINATION - The Temptations

MANNISH BOY - Muddy Boy


Tour of Duty: The Music - Born To Be Wild

“Fire all of your guns at once and Explode into space”

Tour of Duty uses the music of the 60s and 70s to both evoke the era in which the combat took place and to comment and add atmosphere to a scene. In a previous blog, I looked at the girl group smash Soldier Boy by The Shirelles, which was used during a romantic interlude. A lot of smokey, late night soul turns up in Tour of Duty when the men get a little R&R and take a trip to Mama San's house of ill repute.

In other cases, the music makes a point about the war itself, as counter-cultural hits clash with combat or play out in the aftermath of some particularly vicious incursion. In the early 70s, Curtis Mayfield soundtracked the film Superfly, whose visual action reveled in negative black stereotypes with socially aware music that critiqued the film as it played. Sometimes Tour of Duty employs a similar trick, as Woodstock era anti-war music accompanies images of combat.

Of course, sometimes you just want something that rocks while things explode and chaos ensues. This is where Born To Be Wild comes in…


The first television series to dramatise the events of the Vietnamese War, Tour Of Duty was a groundbreaking show that combined breathtaking action with thought-provoking drama while addressing the human elements of the conflict, from issues of racism and culture to suicide, drug abuse, the civilian casualties and the alienation of those soldiers who made it home alive.

Now, Tour Of Duty comes to UK DVD in its original broadcast format, for the first time ever in any worldwide territory, including the full original soundtrack of classic music tracks – including the main title track, The Rolling Stones’ “Paint It Black” – that importantly set the tone and mood of the series and helped make it so popular with viewers.

Tour Of Duty – The Complete First Season features all 21 one-hour episodes of the show’s debut series collected over five discs.

The plotline revolves around a single platoon of young US soldiers during their one-year tour of combat duty in Vietnam during the late 1960s. Miles from home in the unfamiliar and hostile terrain of South-East Asia, this small band of infantrymen from diverse racial, cultural and philosophical backgrounds are ultimately forced to depend upon each other as brothers in arms fighting in a war that was to last almost 20 years.

Starring Terence Knox, Kevin Conroy, Stephen Caffrey, Joshua Maurer, Steve Akahoshi, Tony Becker, Eric Bruskotter, Stan Foster, Ramon Franco, and Miguel A. Nunez Jr. and featuring songs by the likes of Wilson Pickett, Bob Dylan, Buffalo Springfield, The Four Tops, Marvin Gaye, Procol Harum, The Temptations, Creedence Clearwater Revival, The Beach Boys, Them, Stevie Wonder, Edwin Starr, Jimi Hendrix, Steppenwolf, Aretha Franklin, James Brown, Chuck Berry, Roy Orbison, Merle Haggard, Percy Sledge and The Band, Tour Of Duty is a must-see series for fans of Oliver Stone’s “Platoon”, Stanley Kubrick’s “Full Metal Jacket” and Steven Spielberg’s World War II based TV series “Band Of Brothers” and “The Pacific”.

Tour Of Duty – The Complete First Season (cert. tbc) will be released on DVD (£49.99) by Fabulous Films on 7th November 2011.

Special Features include: all-new making of documentary filmed in Los Angeles in July 2011 and featuring cast and crew members; stills gallery; behind the scenes photos; cast biographies; crew biographies; character biographies; poster gallery; lobby card gallery.

Distributor:
Fabulous Films
Release date:
7th November, 2011
Running time:
1048 Minutes Approx.
Price:
£49.99
Cat No:
FHED2867
Extras:

Part one of a brand new making of documentary, filmed in LA July 2011, a stills gallery, character biographies and much, much more.

Director:
Bill Norton, Aaron Lipstadt, Jim Johnston, Reynaldo Villalobos, Randy Roberts, Ronald L Schwary, Stephen L Posey, Charles Correll, Bill Duke, James L Conway, Robert Iscove
Stars:
  • Stephen Caffrey
  • Terence Knox
  • Tony Becker
  • Miguel A. Núñez Jr.
  • Eric Bruskotter
  • Joshua D. Maurer
  • Ramón Franco
  • Stan Foster
  • Dan Gauthier
  • Kim Delaney

Credits

Distributor:
Fabulous Films
Release date:
7th November, 2011
Director:
Bill Norton, Aaron Lipstadt, Jim Johnston, Reynaldo Villalobos, Randy Roberts, Ronald L Schwary, Stephen L Posey, Charles Correll, Bill Duke, James L Conway, Robert Iscove
Stars:

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