If given a choice, I prefer the “Get Smart” route: Let fans buy it all at once, and let others buy it year after year when it becomes available in stores.

TV series get bundled up
Just as TV sets are getting bigger and bigger, so are DVD collections.
After years of selling season sets of popular shows, suppliers now are packaging more box sets of complete TV series.
Stronger-than-expected sales of HBO Video’s $300, 20-disc, six-season set of Sex and the City in November gave the marketing team a whole new strategy to use with other series: releasing the set in the lucrative fourth quarter after the series’ run had ended.
“We experienced tremendous success with Sex and the City, and it has continued selling at a steady pace,” HBO’s Sofia Chang says.
The pricey sets generally are released in limited editions of 10,000 to 50,000 and cost $30-$40 a set to produce. With list prices from $200 to $300, the profit potential for a complete series set can be 10 times that of a single DVD.
Bringing out a full-series set is “not unlike numerous releases of a film: a special edition, a director’s cut, an ultimate collector’s edition,” says Twentieth Century Fox’s Steve Feldstein.
A&E was one of the first to bundle an entire series in one box with The Avengers in 2001. Since then the company has released complete series of such cult shows as Kids in the Hall, The Prisoner and Monty Python’s Flying Circus.
“We’ve always been about collectors,” A&E’s Kate Winn says. “The customer base for our megasets is not price-sensitive; they want to take ownership of a program that has meaning to them.”
And the sets make great gifts.
But Gord Lacey, who runs the popular website, says the sets can “deliver a big blow to the loyal customers who have purchased all the season sets over the last three to five years.”
That complaint won’t be heard with Get Smart.
HBO is releasing all five seasons of the classic spy spoof in a 25-disc set. Get Smart: The Complete Collection ($200) goes on sale Nov. 15 exclusively through the Time-Life website. It will arrive in stores next fall.