'Wild Chicago,' WTTW Series Spotlighting The Windy City's 'Urban Jungle,' Now Available On DVD

It's been nearly 25 years since WTTW's "Wild Chicago" first hit the air waves -- and a decade since it left -- and now fans of the popular, offbeat show can own a piece of it for the first time.

Highlights from the first two seasons of the show, hosted by the show's ever-safari-ready Ben Hollis, are newly available on DVD and debuted at an event last weekend at the Patio Theater.

The show -- which premiered on Jan. 6, 1989 -- turned the spotlight on some of the city's most eccentric and off-beat corners, all to the bizarre soundtrack provided by composer Roger Adler. As Robert Feder notes, though the show remained on the air through 2003, its heyday was when Hollis was at the helm through 1992.

Among the highlights of the release are a pre-fame Stephen Colbert, a supremely awkward interview with Mayor Richard M. Daley, features on the "Tiger Moves" man, the Belmont and Clark punks and "Rat Lady" and other segments featuring some of the city's most offbeat inhabitants and institutions.

Hollis funded the release through a successful Indiegogo campaign.

In addition to the DVD release, the season one and two highlights are also available to stream (for $2.99 per 20-30 minute segment) or download (for $4.99) on Vimeo. The 140-minute DVD costs $24.99 plus shipping.

If you're feeling nostalgic for the Windy City's wilder days, you can also get your fix via a handful of episodes uploaded to YouTube by the Museum of Classic Chicago Television.



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