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Category:    Home > Reviews > Science Fiction > TV > Battlestar Galactica – Season Three (DVD-Video/New Series)

Battlestar Galactica – Season Three (DVD-Video/New Series)


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



Though Battlestar Galactica has been reviewed multiple times on this site with mixed review; but this reviewer can say that Season 3 is by far the best season of the series yet.  In this third season of the epic Battlestar series the story picks-up where the Second Season cliffhanger ending left off (no spoilers here).  After the crew colonized a new planet (New Caprica) there is a one year jump in time for the series; an interesting choice in this reviewer’s opinion.  This season takes the series in a very different direction in the form of personal, mental and physical turmoil.  Some of our favorite Battlestar veterans find themselves entrapped against unfathomable odds within themselves, with their fellow people and of course the Cylons.  The first four or five episodes focus on the New Caprica story arch and are some of the series best episodes ever.  An unmistakable connection between reality and fiction arises in Season 3 with the New Caprica storyline that connects the events on a new planet with the U.S. involvement and military occupation of Iraq.  The odd choice by the writers however were to make the people the Iraqis and the occupying Cylons the USA; nevertheless these choices were not overly political and were well presented, the parallels only giving a dash of political commentary.


From the new planet the series propelled back into space and introduced fans to a whole new level of controversy.  The story arches after New Caprica did not always work, but overall were interesting and well written.  There are secret tribunals to decide the fate of Cylon enablers, countless Cylon/Human interactions, and odd love entanglements.  Besides the love stories that for the most part could have been left out, the rest of the season was amazing and captivating.


Battlestar Galactica always leaves viewers wanting more and this season did not disappoint.  There are great story arches that both answer many questions, while raising an array of others.  Some things worked in Season 3 and others were just adequate, but as an overall evaluation the season was one of the best yet.  The show has always had moderately impressive technical features and that trend continues with the Season Three DVD release.  The picture is once again presented as an anamorphically enhanced 1.78 X 1 image that does a good job of highlighting the series intense use of varying exposures, color schemes, and other stylistic choices.  If anything this reviewer loves the odd combination of old and new that the series embodies giving it an updated yet classic feel.  The picture at times does seem grainy but this reviewer feels that since it was filmed digitally this effect was most likely intentional.


The colors are well balanced within the realm to the stylistic intention, but this reviewer still feels there is room for improvement in the areas of brightness and contrast.  The sound is ‘booming’ in its Dolby Digital 5.1 Surrounds and emphasizes the action sequences just as well as it does passing footsteps or quiet dialogue in a dark corridor.  Overall, the sound on Season Three is the most impressive yet (besides the HD release of Season One), but as always there is room for improvement.  The side-to-side directional sound could definitely be kicked up a notch for example.  The extras on this set did not impress this reviewer and he thinks it won’t impress other fans either.  The extras offered on this third season set include the podcast commentaries from Ron Moore that whereas they are nicely done and humorous at times this reviewer wanted more.  Also included as an extra is an extended cut of one of the more complex episodes (‘Unfinished Business’) and offers fans an opportunity to view the episode at almost double the length with more content, flashbacks, and flashy camera work.  Overall, this reviewer felt the extra 40 minutes neither added nor detracted from the episode; so it is a wash.  The extras need work.


Battlestar Galactica has been a great series since its origins in the late 1970’s and this newer updated series has just breathed new life into an already brilliant concept.  Season 3 in particular has taken the series to a whole new level with great action, huge story arches, and amazing visuals.  Granted this DVD set may not be the best on picture, sound and extras; it is the best this series has ever seen (except HD) and is still an amazing series to own.  Though it has been confirmed that the Fourth Season of Battlestar Galactica will be the series last, judging from Season Three there is only fantastic things to come in the future.



-   Michael P Dougherty II


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