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Chris Hicks: DVD releases include Swayze's FBI drama

Here are the latest television shows to land on DVD, led by Patrick Swayze's short-lived series from earlier this year.

"The Beast: The Complete First Season" (Sony, 2009, three discs, $39.95). Swayze stars in this overly familiar good-guys vs. bad-guys program from the A&E cable channel.

He plays a veteran FBI agent going after drug lords and gunrunners with a rookie partner in tow — unaware that his partner has also been assigned to investigate whether Swayze has gone rogue.

This set is actually the entire series, as it has been canceled.

Extras: widescreen, 13 episodes, featurettes

"Adam-12: Season Three" (Shout!/Universal, 1970-71, $34.99). Back when a drama could be 30 minutes, this highly entertaining by-the-book police procedural from Jack Webb of "Dragnet" followed a pair of Los Angeles street cops (Martin Milner, Kent McCord) in a realistic manner.

Often tackling several issues in each episode, the subjects ranged from deadly serious to whimsical amusement, from a gang of girls in miniskirts fronting for car thieves to an 8-year-old (Jodie Foster) who helps locate a missing child.

Comedians dominate the guest list — Shelley Berman, Morey Amsterdam, Foster Brooks. And a film buff with a sense of humor might have cast Charles McGraw and Utah actress Marie Windsor in one episode (though they don't appear together); the pair costarred in the classic film noir "The Narrow Margin" nearly 20 years earlier.

Extras: full frame, 26 episodes

"Gossip Girl: The Complete Second Season" (Warner, 2008-09, seven discs, $59.98). The second season of this teen soap opera about the rich and spoiled takes the kids into their senior year, with college looming and romances and scandals competing for attention. Watch this show with your teens and then debate whether it romanticizes promiscuity and drugs.

Extras: widescreen, 25 episodes, deleted scenes, Webisodes, featurettes, bloopers; downloadable audio book read by Christina Ricci: "Gossip Girl: You Know You Love Me"

"Greek: Chapter Three" (ABC Family, 2009, three discs, $39.99). Think of this as "Gossip Girl Lite" with the kids in college and all of the excesses toned down.

Extras: widescreen, 10 episodes, audio commentaries, featurette, bloopers

"America's Test Kitchen: Season Nine" (WGBH, 2009, four discs, $39.99). Chris Kimball and friends are back for more home-style recipes in this PBS show.

Extras: widescreen, 26 episodes, 52 printable recipes

"Chris Isaak: Greatest Hits Live" (E1, 2005, $19.99). Isaak performs 15 hits live for the PBS concert show "Sound Stage." This disc includes three songs not broadcast.

Extras: widescreen, 15 songs

"Breaking the Bank" (PBS, 2009, $24.99). "Frontline" explores the billion-dollar banks that faltered during the housing-market crisis.

Extras: widescreen

"Audience of One" (IndiePix, 2007, $24.95). This documentary chronicles the folly of a Pentecostal minister in San Francisco — who had never seen a film until he was 40 — as he follows a "vision" from God telling him to write and direct a sci-fi movie epic based on the biblical story of Joseph.

Extras: widescreen, deleted scenes, audio commentary, featurettes

e-mail: hicks@desnews.com