By Jen Chaney
Washington Post Staff Writer
Tuesday, June 15, 2010; 12:00 AM
It happens every year, right before Father's Day. Somehow you completely forget to get something for dear old Dad, which results in a last-minute scramble and the procurement of a cliche present that falls in the Boring Necktie category.
But it doesn't have to be that way. If your dad is the kind of guy who likes to kick back in his recliner and watch television -- and what man isn't? -- then a DVD or Blu-ray release may make the ideal Father's Day gift. Here's a list of options, all recently released, that could make a nice complement to a more traditional offering, or a perfectly pleasant present all on their own.
For the avid golfer: In addition to that new 12-pack of Titleists, consider giving a copy of the golf comedy that keeps on giving, three decades after its initial release: "Caddyshack," which made its debut on Blu-ray ($24.98) last week.
For the film buff: If swords, sandals and Kirk Douglas in a toga are just Dad's speed, present him with the 50th anniversary edition of "Spartacus" ($26.98) on Blu-ray. Or, if his tastes run more toward the edgy, indie side of the spectrum, there's the Criterion Collection edition of Jim Jarmusch's "Mystery Train," the multi-storyline salute to Stax Records that's out today on DVD and Blu-ray ($39.95).
For the aficionado of classic television: Age-wise, does Dad fall in the Generation X category? Then watch his eyes light up at the sight of "The A-Team: The Complete Series" ($149.98), packaged in a case that bears striking resemblance to the van from the '80s action series. And if he's a baby boomer, provide instant gratification with "Leave It to Beaver: Season Three" ($39.97), on DVD today, or give him a raincheck for "Leave It to Beaver: The Complete Series" ($199.99), due out on June 29.
For the baseball fan: Couldn't secure tickets for a Nationals game featuring superstar Stephen Strasburg? Surely Pops will be equally happy -- fine, politely grateful -- to receive "MLB Bloopers: Baseball's Best Blunders" ($14.93), a 90-minute compendium of moments when things on the diamond got rough.
For the Western man: If Dad is most at home on the range, there's "The Virginian: The Complete First Season" ($79.98), the '60s series starring Lee J. Cobb, or the Criterion Collection's excellent edition of "Stagecoach" on DVD and Blu-ray (both for $39.95).
For the rocker dad: Give your father free reign to crank the volume with "U2: 360 at the Rose Bowl," a performance captured during their most recent tour on DVD ($19.98) and Blu-ray ($26.98), or "Elvis 75th Birthday Collection," ($39.98) a collection of seven of the King's feature films, including "Love Me Tender" and "Clambake."
The post-apocalyptic option: Your best-seller-obsessed father has already put Justin Cronin's "The Passage" at the top of his Amazon wish list. So round out the literary bleakness with a copy of "The Road," (DVD $27.96; Blu-ray $34.95) the wrenching but well-done adaptation of the Cormac McCarthy novel that happens to feature excellent performances from Viggo Mortensen and Kodi Smit-McPhee as a father and son clinging to each other for survival.
Lastly, in addition to the tie: If Dad will be disappointed if you don't hook him up with some slick neckwear, then by all means, go the tie route. But shake it up a little by adding in a season of "Mad Men," a show filled with guys who are always dressed to impress. Season two -- with its DVD case featuring a pressed-shirt and tie -- will make the connection most obvious.