Fulvue Drive-In.com
Current Reviews
In Stores Soon
In Stores Now
DVD Reviews, SACD Reviews Essays Interviews Contact Us Meet the Staff
An Explanation of Our Rating System Search  
Category:    Home > Reviews > Western > Action > Drama > Cable TV > Hell On Wheels: Season Four (2015/E1 Blu-ray Set)

Hell On Wheels: Season Four (2015/E1 Blu-ray Set)

Picture: A- Sound: A Extras: C+ Episodes: B

Hell On Wheels is another one of the AMC Network's shows that I enjoy watching every week, but is still kind of the underdog when compared to Mad Men, The Walking Dead, Breaking Bad, etc. I'll admit it is not for everyone, because not everyone enjoys watching Westerns, and that's what this show is, a Western. Hell On Wheels gives us a lot more than Cowboys and Indians (Native Americans). It has drama, action, romance, and yes, even some comedic moments. This Western series also shows us the harsh conditions of the times and how it gets increasingly worse as the show progresses.

In this Fourth Season, we start to see more of the toll working on this railroad takes on its characters and how the past comes to haunt them. It follows the brutal winter of 1868 and the railroad is at a standstill and restless. The workers wreak havoc on Cheyenne. Cullen Bohannon is trapped in a fort with a pregnant wife, Thomas Durant is broke, and Elam Ferguson is presumed dead. The task of uniting America still is unfinished and everything seems to be getting worse.

My favorite relationship in the series is between Cullen and Elam, but Common (The actor that plays Elam) had already stated that he would not be returning after Season Four, which brings me to why I did not rate the thirteen episodes on this 3-disc set as high as I would normally for a show I enjoy. The episodes are The Elusive Eden, Escape from the Garden, Chicken Hill, Reckoning, Life's a Mystery, Bear Man, Elam Ferguson, Under Color Law, Two Trains, Return to Hell, Bleeding Kansas, Thirteen Steps, and Further West. Bear Man and Elam Ferguson are the two episodes that stand out the most here, but not in a good way. They are the episodes that show the removal of Elam's character, which seemed a little forced and frankly did not make a whole lot of sense in the world that they created.

The 1080p Digital High Definition Blu-ray presentations (in an 1.78:1 aspect ratio) looks much better than watching it live on television. When shooting a western the wide open landscapes are a crucial part and seeing the crisp colors in HD is a big plus. Not to mention, the lossless DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 (and lesser, lossy Dolby Digital 5.1 if you choose) that surrounds your room and makes it appear that a train is passing behind you.

Extras on the disc include: A Look at Season 4, The New Characters of Season 4, Cheyenne Set Tour, On the Set with Colm Meaney, On the Set with Jake Weber, Episode Featurettes, Anson Mount Retrospective. You can see more coverage of previous seasons elsewhere on this site.

This is one show that I recommend sticking with, because of how well it is shot stylistically and the content within. If you're a Western fan, then it doesn't disappoint.

- Jordan Whiteko


 Copyright © MMIII through MMX fulvuedrive-in.com