One of the best reality shows that MTV has come up with, "Run's House" follows former Run DMC rapper Run (aka Joseph Simmons, now a Reverend) as he tries to look after his family (including wife Justine and children Vanessa, Russell Jr., Angela, Jojo and Daniel) and keep his career going.
The series gives a spotlight to each member of the family (and with 5 kids, 2 parents, an aunt and uncle and others, the series has no problem finding a story to follow or filling the running time), whether it's the two daughters trying to move into New York City and going from the penthouse down to what they could actually afford or son Russell, Jr.'s continued destruction of Game Boys. Joseph also works with Uncle Russell (Russell Simmons, co-founder of the pioneering music label Def Jam records) on the family business, Run Athletics.
The kids do display some spoiled moments throughout the series, but Joseph does a terrific job in the series trying to keep his family in order, offering positive reinforcement, trying to teach good values (each show ends with a positive message from Joseph) and often speaking to his children like adults instead of talking down to them. Still, he does have moments of comedic exasperation at times while trying to keep things together, which are admittedly some of the funniest moments of this consistently amusing series. While his kids have their entertaining moments (as does wife Justine), Joseph remains the highlight of the show.
The third season of the series premieres on April 9th on MTV.
Season 1 & 2:
1 The Graduate
- Joseph/Run throws a graduation party for Vanessa, but it takes a while to work out the details.
2 The Birds and the Bees
- Justine asks her husband to give Diggy and Russell a talk on the "birds and bees."
3 Chicks Fly The Coop
- Joseph gets upset with the family junk that he finds in the pool house and decides to take extreme measures to clear it out. Meanwhile, Vanessa and Angela try to move out, first seeing some ridiculously expensive NYC apartments...and then seeing the ones they can actually afford.
4 Go for the Gold
- Joseph realizes how competitive his family has become.
5 Justine Diets and Angela Interns
- Justine decides to go on a diet, while Jojo waits for his report card. Meanwhile, Angela starts an internship at her Aunt's clothing company, Baby Phat.
6 Run's Family Vacation
- Vanessa gets a modeling job in Colorado and Joseph decides to bring the entire family along with him. 7 Baby Fever
- Russell has a sleepover party, while Justine wishes for another child.
8 A Healthy Heart
- Justine thinks that Joseph should have a check-up, as he hasn't had one for 12 years.
9 All Work and No Peace
- While promoting his new album, Joseph starts to feel the pressure of running his company and taking care of his family.
10 Maximum Growth
- Vanessa is informed by her agent that she's been selected for a photo shoot for Maxim Magazine's 100 hottest celebrities.
11. Two Down and One to Grow
- Joseph gets an offer he can't resist from Marquis Jet and Vanessa and Angela plan to move out.
12. Anger Management
- Russell, Jr. goes to anger management after breaking yet another Game Boy and then starts karate. Angela sets her sights on starting up a magazine. 13. Downward Facing Dawg
- Joseph can't understand why Russell gets so angry if he's so into Yoga, so he decides to try out a Yoga class himself.
14 Vegas Vacation
- Run heads to a clothing conference in Las Vegas and has the kids plan out a special wedding celebration to surprise Justine.
15. Rev's Fix-It List
- Justine pulls together a list of what irritates her about Joseph.
16. Rev Mom
- Justine announces she's pregnant, and her and Run tell the kids.
VIDEO: "Run's House" is presented by Paramount in 1.33:1 full-frame and looks mostly terrific, with very good sharpness/detail throughout all but a few scenes. The presentation did show a couple of minor instances of artifacting, but no edge enhancement or other issues were spotted. Colors appeared bright and well-saturated, with no smearing or other issues. Flesh tones looked natural, as well.
SOUND: The series is presented in stereo audio, with punchy, bassy music and clear dialogue.
EXTRAS: The DVD includes over an hour of additional footage, including extended scenes, hour tours and "MTV Overdrive" internet featurettes that have the family discussing the episodes.
Final Thoughts: "Run's House" is one of MTV's most enjoyable reality shows, as Run remains a great character and it's entertaining to try and watch him successfully balance his professional life and home life. The DVD presentation offers fine audio/video quality and a nice helping of extra features. Recommended for fans.