Beats me. Hell, they had box sets of Futurama and Family Guy long before they were available here (I’ve got those, too!). Other examples of this are Friends and South Park.
As for your other question, a couple of years ago, I bought a region free player with a PAL-NTSC converter built in. Plays like a charm. It even plays DVD-RWs. This is good because it allows me to test burn a DVD (to check menus and such) before committing to a DVD-R.
Paramount says they weren’t going to offer the UK packaging because it would add too much to the price!
Bullshit. I got the Trek sets for the same price, but usually lower (the exchange rate was a little better then) INCLUDING shipping, than the US versions.