Archive for the ‘Television Series’ Category

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Distributor: Paramount Pictures

Release Date: October 04, 2016

Region: Region A

Length: 5,091 min

Video: 1080P (MPEG-4, AVC)

Main Audio: 5.1 English Dolby TrueHD

Alternate Audio:

Season 1: 2.0 Spanish Dolby Digital

Season 2: 5.1 Spanish Dolby TrueHD

Season 3: 2.0 Spanish Dolby Digital

Season 4: 2.0 Spanish Dolby Digital

Season 5: 2.0 Spanish Dolby Digital, 5.1 French Dolby Digital

Season 6: 2.0 English Dolby Digital, 2.0 Spanish Dolby Digital, 5.1 French Dolby Digital

Season 7: 2.0 English Dolby Digital, 2.0 Spanish Dolby Digital, 5.1 French Dolby Digital

Season 8: 2.0 Spanish Dolby Digital

Subtitles:

Seasons 1-5: English SDH

Seasons 6-8: English, English SDH

Ratio: 1.78:1

Notes: This title is available in other Blu-ray and DVD editions.

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Dexter is a crime drama that follows the exploits of Dexter Morgan, a man who leads a double life as an incredibly likeable forensics expert for the Miami Police Department who just happens to have a secret appetite for dispatching serial killers. Vigilante justice has never been presented quite in this way before. Based on Jeff Lindsay’s series of novels, this may be one of the most addictive television series of all time (although Breaking Bad probably deserves to be at the top of that list).

Interestingly, psychiatrists have praised the series for its relative accuracy in representing the various psychological issues presented throughout the series, and this accuracy is partly responsible for its success. Besides being a thriller, it proves to be an extremely interesting character study. If the series has a weakness, it is that it outlived the story’s momentum. The final few seasons felt forced and were perhaps a bit weaker overall than some of the earlier seasons, but these later seasons did manage to give viewers a few interesting revelations and they are worth visiting (an re-visiting).

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The Presentation:

4.5 of 5 Stars

All eight seasons (ninety-six episodes) of this award-winning show is included here on 24 discs (3 discs per season) that are housed in “shelf-friendly packaging” featuring appropriate Dexter-related artwork. It is a relatively sturdy and decidedly attractive package.

The animated menus for each season is attractive and easy to navigate.

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Picture Quality:

4 of 5 Stars

It is rather challenging to gauge the overall image quality of a series when the quality fluctuates as much as it does between the ninety-six episodes, but we can state with certainty that these transfers do not represent any real change from the quality of the individually released seasons. The quality isn’t overwhelmingly impressive overall, but it is far from bad (even at its worse). Detail seems solid as does clarity (most of the time), and colors seem to represent the original intention. One doubts if Dexter looked this good during the original broadcasts.

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Sound Quality:

4 of 5 Stars 

While not as dynamic as what some might expect, the 5.1 Dolby TrueHD mixes are consistently solid and engaging. Everything seems appropriately distributed across the channels as it offers clear dialogue and immersive music and effects without ever calling attention to itself. There isn’t much room for complaint here.

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Special Features:

2 of 5 Stars

With the exception of the few first season commentaries, this boxed set is nearly devoid of any relevant supplementary material. Actually, this fact doesn’t really bother this reviewer. Supplementary material is wonderful if it is enlightening, informative, and engaging—but too many Blu-ray titles include empty EPK fluff that merely takes up precious disc space. It is actually nice to see that Paramount doesn’t waste the viewer’s time with these empty featurettes (with the exception of season eight’s supplemental package).

[Note: We do not consider BD-Live material in our reviews.]

Season 1:

“Return to Sender” Episode Audio Commentary with Jennifer Carpenter, David Zayas, Lauren Velez and Erik King

It is nice to hear these participants talk about the episode, and this particular commentary is actually rather engaging even if it is less than truly informative.

“Born Free” Episode Audio Commentary with Sara Colleton, Clyde Phillips, and Daniel Cerrone (Executive Producers)

This commentary by the executive producers of Dexter is perhaps less engaging but possibly slightly more informative than the first (although this is arguable). It is nice to at least hear the participants muse about the series and this “season finale.”

Season 2:

Tools of the Trade

This somewhat pointless feature allows the viewer to read about the various weapons from Dexter’s kill-kit.

Season 8:

The End Begins – (HD) – (03:03)

This is yet another promo to entice viewers to watch the final season.

From Cop to Killer – (HD) – (03:15)

The evolution of Debra Morgan has been compressed into a rather superficial featurette that plays more like a promo for Showtime. It is hardly worth utilizing disc space for such a trifling piece of fluff.

Episode 1-4 Featurettes – (HD) – (8 min):

The cast and crew talk generally about episodes 1-4 in these four promos that are designed to persuade and entice the uninitiated and are not intended to inform fans of the series. There is no real insight to the interviews, but they might qualify as interesting time capsules someday. One wonders why such featurettes are included on Blu-rays. Those who have purchased these discs have obviously already been persuaded.

Dexter with Scott Buck (Executive Producer) – Episode #801

Episode #802 – Directed by Michael C. Hall

Dissecting Episode #803, Scene 30

Dexter with Scott Buck (Executive Producer) – Episode #804

It is worth mentioning that certain statements and clips are re-used throughout the various featurettes on the disc. Watching them can become rather monotonous.

Ray Donovan: Episodes 1 & 2 (HD)

Some might find the inclusion of these episodes worthwhile, but they are somewhat out of place on a Dexter boxed set. They are obviously included in an effort to recruit potential viewers to tune into the Ray Donovan series.

BD-Live Features

BD-Live Features are included for every season, but not everyone will have access. It is also important to understand that such features are liable to be taken offline at some point in time.

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Final Words:

Some people love Dexter while others loathe it, but most will be able to guess whether or not they will enjoy the show without having to watch a single episode. If the subject matter sounds interesting to you, this Blu-ray set is the best way to experience this award-winning series.

Review by: Devon Powell