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Category:    Home > Reviews > Drama > Legal > Scandal > Medical > Comedy > Surreal > British > Damages – The Complete Third Season (2010/Sony DVD Set)/ER– The Complete Fifteenth/Final Season (2008 – 2009/Warner DVD Set)/Reggie Perrin – Set One (2009/Acorn Media DVD Set)

Damages – The Complete Third Season (2010/Sony DVD Set)/ER– The Complete Fifteenth/Final Season (2008 – 2009/Warner DVD Set)/Reggie Perrin – Set One (2009/Acorn Media DVD Set)


Picture: C     Sound: C+     Extras: C+/C-/C-     Episodes: C+/C-/C+



And now for a look at three TV series with some substance, even if they are not at their strongest…



I liked Damages in its First Season and you can read about it here:




Now we take a look at the show a few years and seasons later in the new Damages – The Complete Third Season DVD Set and it is still a good show, but it has changed in very dramatic ways affecting some of the main characters and shaken up its set up in odd ways as a result.  Still a smart show, the series has stuck with its characters adding few new and despite missing the Second Season, it was easier to pick up much of what was going on as exposition on the show is top rate.


Needless to say Glenn Close holds her own among a really fine cast that includes Rose Byrne, Campbell Scott, Tate Donovan, Ted Danson, Lily Tomlin and even Martin Short in an unusual dramatic part where even he delivers.  It is almost as if the writers (good as they are) cannot handle the weight of all the talent, but this is still interesting viewing and I would start at the beginning, but you get 13 episodes over 3 DVDs and the show holds its own with some limits.



Long past its prime, ER logs its last and poorest season with ER– The Complete Fifteenth/Final Season (2008 – 2009) now on DVD and the show was pretty much running on fumes by now.  You can read more about the series beginning at this link and going backwards:




At this point, NBC was holding on to the show so Warner would not take it to another network and the final episode wrapping up everything is the only one really worth your time and that is only if you watched the early seasons.



Finally we have a new show starring Martin Clunes of Doc Martin.  Reggie Perrin – Set One (2009) which is a comedy that has its title character constantly dreaming of acting out his anger and unhappiness in his mind as he constantly confronts all around him unhappily.  This set has the first two short seasons of the series and though the show is smartly and consistently written, I never found it very funny and the near surreal approach was much more effective in Irvin Kershner’s Up The Sandbox (1972), the most underrated Barbra Streisand film ever made.


The comedy is not even so much British as it is meant to be different and even shocking, but I was not as shocked that his character constantly wanted to break conformity and in that respect, many British series from The Avengers to Benny Hill have done all this better anyhow.  Maybe the show will become wackier and more risky, but on some level, it is still playing it too safe.  !2 episodes are here on 2 DVDs.



The anamorphically enhanced 1.78 image on all three releases are softer than expected, with Perrin being the most obvious of the three HD shoots (all likely 1080i) and all having more motion blur than I would have liked.  Color is best on Perrin, but Damages sets itself back with too many split-screen and broken-screen edits.  The Dolby Digital 5.1 on ER and Damages have limited soundfields as they are dialogue-based at best, which is why the Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo on Perrin is more than able to compete as it is definitely centered on dialogue.


Extras are on all three releases, but they vary.  Damages has the most with cast/crew audio commentaries, Deleted Scenes, episode intros, Season 3 Trailer, Sometimes You Just Get Damaged blooper reel and two Making Of featurettes: Directing Damages and Damages Season 3 – A Look Back.  ER has Outpatient Outtakes: Unrated Scenes and Previously On ER: Retrospective Featurette.  Perrin has a behind-the-scenes photo gallery.



-   Nicholas Sheffo


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