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Idea: 'In the Heat of the Night' (tv series) - original aspect ratio preservation

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 (Edited)

In the Heat of the Night (based off of the 1967 movie of the same name) was a TV series that aired on CBS and then NBC from 1988-1995. It’s since become a staple in syndication. However one thing has affected its legacy, like many other shows it’s been cropped to widescreen from the original 4x3 aspect ratio so composition is hugely messed up as a result.

The show was released on DVD by TGG Direct but these releases are notorious for excluding episodes (due to rights issues) and how some of the disks don’t even work on several different players. I’m honestly not sure if these DVD sets are in the original aspect ratio (though it’s likely they are) but if one could get a rip of those that’d be good (especially for the feature length episodes, not sure if they’re presented that way or in two parts on those sets either).

I know a batch of episodes from recordings off of WGN America exist too but it’s highly likely the episodes are trimmed by 2-3 minutes for time. If they aren’t then they’d be especially worthy for the episodes excluded on the DVD releases.

If anyone could send me anything that has the show in its original 4x3 aspect ratio please let me know, this show remains highly popular so I think it’s fitting to preserve how it was meant to be seen.

Raccoons

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Are the HD rips of this show in 1080p or 1080i the incorrect aspect ratio? The ones from Amazon and possibly other streaming services. These are available to download too. You most likely have excluded this important information in your original post.

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 (Edited)

I saw the Amazon versions and they’re widescreen too, they have the “free with ads” option and I sampled them specifically to check the aspect ratio, however they do at least have the episodes missing on the DVDs

Based on this I’ve concluded the only available HD masters are 16x9

Raccoons

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SpacemanDoug said:

I saw the Amazon versions and they’re widescreen too, they have the “free with ads” option and I sampled them specifically to check the aspect ratio, however they do at least have the episodes missing on the DVDs

Based on this I’ve concluded the only available HD masters are 16x9

Shame it’s cropped, possibly, and not OAR.

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The Season 1 masters on Amazon were HD 4x3 - I believe they may have been replaced with 16x9 at some point but they do indeed exist in 4x3.