Saturday, May 09, 2009

Blog DVD Review: October Road - The Complete Second Season

Welcome to our weekly Blog DVD Reviews! Today we take a look at Buena Vista Home Entertainment's October Road: The Complete Second Season. October Road is a drama about an author going back home after writing bad things in a book about his friends from that small town. See my Blog DVD Review of October Road: The Complete Second Season:

October Road: The Complete Second Season (Buena Vista/ABC Studios, $34.99) brings the final 13 episodes of the small-town drama on DVD! October Road is a heart-warming drama set in fictional Knights Ridge, MA about friendship, love, and change that frankly ended way too soon. While the street October Road is not as popular as Wisteria Lane, it certainly has its fair share of drama. The second season of October Road opens just after Nick (Bryan Greenberg) has confessed his eternal love to Hannah Jane (Laura Prepon) and Nick and Eddie (Geoff Stults) head to New York in an attempt to bring Owen (Brad William Henke) back to his estranged wife Allison (Elizabeth Bogush) and family in Knights Ridge after Allison had an affair with Ikey (Evan Jones), and Hannah comes to terms with her true feelings for Nick. Later, Big Cat (Warren Christie) has a marriage proposal for Hannah and we still don't know the secret of Sam's (Slade Pearce) father's identity; the unlikely relationship between Eddie and Janet (Rebecca Field) continues; The Commander's (Tom Berenger) surprise bout with bone cancer; Aubrey (Odette Yustman) and Nick get back together; while Nick's brother Ronny (Jonathan Murphy) develops a liking to Aubrey; and Physical Phil (Jay Paulson) finally comes out of the house with the help of Pizza Girl (Lindy Booth). All that and so much more!
Packaging on this DVD is similar to the first season. We have an outer box that holds a snap case. I really don't think the outer box is needed because it is the same art as the case. On both the box and case we have the show's logo, followed by the complete second season line, then we have a nice big photo of Nick, followed by some of the other characters in the background (Hannah, Sam, Big Cat, Janet, Eddie, and Aubrey) with a nice fall season background. The back of the box and the case has synopsis of the series and set, along with a list of bonus features and some nice small screenshots (Ronny & Aubrey; Sam; Nick & Hannah; and The Commander). To open the case, we DON'T have two little buttons to pull like last time, now we just can open it regularly. Inside the case that we have a spot for an insert on the left, which is a listing for Buena Vista's Blu-ray sets. The discs are on the right. Disc one and two are on a little plastic handle that we can flip like a book, disc one on the front side and disc two on the back side of this handle. Disc three is on the right panel. All three discs have silver and white color with the show title and a headshot of a character. Episodes 1-4 are on disc one with a shot of Nick, episodes 5-9 are on disc two with a shot of Hannah, and episodes 10-13 and the extras are on disc three with a shot of Big Cat.
This series is excellent. The first season aired after Grey's Anatomy on Thursdays and was well sampled. But this second season was aired on Monday nights and didn't launch until Thanksgiving, which was a big mistake. Even with lower ratings, the plots of the episodes were still as good as the first season. We have character development on this season, as each character is unique. I liked how some characters get a nickname, like "Big Cat," Pizza Girl," "The Commander," and "Physical Phil." That brings more depth to characters and more of a homely feel. The episodes generally run close to 42:30 in length. The highest is 43:05 and lowest is 41:46. Nothing is edited out on the episodes, so that is good news. There are about 9 chapter stops for each episode. The video is in widescreen and looks very good, as it should! The audio is great and sounds very good, as it is in Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround Sound. The show never looked better or sounded better, unless you watched the series in HDTV on ABC. We hear the closing theme, which is always nice to hear since ABC doesn't show the ending theme.
The menu screen gives us a nice shot of an entire road...and you guessed it, it is October Road! The series is set in Knights Ridge, MA, a fake town. The series was shot in the Atlanta area in season one but they moved the sets to Los Angeles, as you'll learn in the extras. We get nice background music from the show playing in the background on the main menu and every submenu. Disc three has auto trailers for Army Wives S2, some movies, and Blu-ray. Options on the menu are: Play All, Episode Selection, Bonus Features, Set Up, Sneak Peaks. Sneak Peaks and Bonus Features options are on disc three only. The Episodes section has the episode number and title...and a cool screenshot. Set Up gives us the option to have Subtitles in English. We can also Register our DVD. Sneak Peeks has the same trailers as the auto trailers on disc three, but also we get a SOAPnet trailer.
Moving on to the bonus features. All of them are on disc three. We start off with "Bump in the Road", as we get a look at some goofiness on the set with bloopers! The bloopers run 2:53 and are much longer than the ones on the first season DVD. The next extra on the set is a behind the scenes feature titled "The Scenic Route: Behind the Scenes Tour." We go behind the scenes with the cast as the sets move from Atlanta to Hollywood. We get a tour from cast members, included are Bryan Greenberg, Tom Berenger, Laura Prepon, Geoff Stults, and Evan Jones. This runs 6:05. It's interesting to see how cool the set is! Then finally, what we have ALL been waiting for! We get a DVD exclusive called "Road's End: The Final Chapter." An exclusive series epilogue, produced specifically for the Season 2 DVD, wraps up the series and finally reveals the identity of Sam's father and the fate of Nick and Hannah's unrequited relationship. Everyone is back but Brad William Henke (Owen), as he was busy shooting Lost. This closing runs 9:50 and was shot in January. Tom Berenger is also not in it, but his character is explained in this, so I won't give it away. But maybe I just gave it away by saying that. Watch the is good.
I really hope you buy this DVD. This show was excellent and now have closure. It's too bad they had to close the show this way with a 9:50 finale, but that is better than nothing. I just wish this show was still on the air! If you are a fan, you must buy this of course. If you never saw it, give season one a try and then you'll be hooked and buy this set as well. All the characters are great. The young audience loved it. I really love the Aubrey character, played by Odette Yustman. She is very good and very attractive. Executive Producers André Nemec, Scott Rosenberg and Josh Applebaum had another ABC series on the air this season called Life on Mars, and it had A LOT of October Road references and even had some stars guest star (Odette Yustman, Brad William Henke), in addition to Jonathan Murphy being on every episode. And now they have a pilot in production called Happy Town, which stars Geoff Stults! It's good to see the Road members live on! So when you buy this DVD, be sure to say "What Goes On?" to the clerk! Remember, you can always go home.
-- Reviewed by Pavan
(4/5 stars)

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Related links: Full DVD Reviews Page
Official Website
October Road Page

New on DVD/Blu-ray (September)

The Big Bang Theory - The Complete Ninth Season Newhart - The Complete Sixth Season 2 Broke Girls - The Complete Fifth Season Family Matters - The Complete Eighth Season Modern Family - The Complete Season 7

09/06 - Coach - Season One (Mill Creek) / Season Two / Seasons One and Two
09/06 - South Park - The Complete Ninteenth Season (Blu-ray)
09/13 - The Big Bang Theory - The Complete Ninth Season (Blu-ray)
09/13 - Newhart - The Complete Sixth Season
09/20 - 2 Broke Girls - The Complete Fifth Season
09/20 - Family Matters - The Complete Eighth Season
09/20 - Modern Family - The Complete Season 7
09/20 - Veep - Season 5
09/27 - The Wonder Years - Season Six
More TV DVD Releases / DVD Reviews Archive / SitcomsOnline Digest

Sitcoms Airing Tonight

Wednesday, October 26

The Goldbergs - "Stefan King" (ABC, 8:00PM ET/PT)
Adam’s love of Stephen King inspires him to try his hand at horror writing. After learning the monster in Adam’s story is based off Beverly, she forces Adam to stay in on Halloween and rewrite it, hoping he depicts her as a better mother.  Meanwhile, Erica is desperate to find a date to the costume dance and forces Barry go with her.

Speechless - "H-A-L-- HALLOWEEN" (ABC, 8:30PM ET/PT)
Jimmy is upset the kids no longer want to participate in the family tradition of dressing up for Halloween. Maya tries to cheer up Jimmy by allowing him to do things he loves by taking things off the family “Dead to Me” list. Meanwhile, Ray recruits Dylan to help work the school’s haunted mansion while Kenneth is scared of losing his job when JJ gets drunk at a party.  Even though Maya is furious, she is thrilled to see JJ having a “normal” life.

Modern Family - "Halloween 4: The Revenge of Rod Skyhook" (ABC, 9:00PM ET/PT)
Luke’s Halloween party isn’t the monster bash he dreamed of and is at risk of having the worst party of the year. Sensing trouble, the rest of the Dunphy’s realize all his party needs is a visit from Rod Skyhook, a little promotion and some adult supervision to get it started. Meanwhile at the Tucker-Pritchett home, Cam faces off with his Halloween nemesis while Lily and Mitchell try to save the day and work to keep him from going to the darkside. Finally, when Jay finds out that Manny is going to a party at the home of an old enemy, he enlists him to deliver a trick he will never forget.

black-ish - "The Purge" (ABC, 9:30PM ET/PT)
After Junior embarrasses Dre during a basketball game, Dre decides to remind Junior of his master pranking skills so he’ll never challenge him again. Meanwhile, the neighborhood participates in a “mischief night” during Halloween where petty crimes become legal, and Ruby takes it too far with the kids.

Younger - "P Is for Pancake" (TV Land, 10:00PM ET/PT)
Kelsey dates a seemingly perfect guy, but Liza and Lauren think it’s too soon. At a party of doctors, Josh puts his relationship with Liza under the microscope.

Impastor - "Sins of the Past-or Part 2" (TV Land, 10:30PM ET/PT)
Dora’s and Alexa’s lives are both in jeopardy and Buddy must choose which one to save. Russell and Dora have a falling out. Schmidt is robbed.

You're the Worst - "The Seventh Layer" (FXX, 10:00PM ET/PT)
Vernon and Paul take a road trip.

Complete TV Listings

Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows (Week of October 24)

Wednesday, October 26

  • Joel McHale (The Great Indoors/Community) - Watch Joel on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert at 11:35pm on CBS.
  • Abbi Jacobson (Broad City) - Abbi visits The Late Show with Stephen Colbert at 11:35pm on CBS. She will also be on LIVE! with Kelly, so check your listings.
  • Colin Hanks (Life in Pieces) - Colin appears on Late Night with Seth Meyers at 12:36am on NBC.
  • Colton Dunn (Superstore), Lauren Ash (Superstore/Super Fun Night and Nico Santos (Superstore) - Colton, Lauren and Nico are guests on @midnight on Comedy Central at midnight.
  • Elijah Wood (Wilfred) - Elijah stops by Conan at 11pm on TBS.
  • Will Forte (The Last Man on Earth) - Will is a guest on Watch What Happens: Live at 11pm on Bravo.
  • Donald Glover (Atlanta/Community) - Donald appears on The Ellen DeGeneres Show, so check your local listings.
  • Ken Jeong (Dr. Ken/Community) - See what happens when Dr. Oz visits the set of Dr. Ken on The Dr. Oz Show, so check your local listings.
  • John Lithgow (3rd Rock from the Sun/Twenty Good Years) - John talks about The Crown on CBS This Morning sometime between 7-9am.
  • Boris Kodjoe (The Last Man on Earth/Second Time Around) - Boris joins the Chew Crew on ABC's The Chew at 1pm ET/12pm PT/CT.
  • Issa Rae (Insecure) - Issa is a guest on ABC's Good Morning America sometime between 7-9am.
  • Colin Hanks (Life in Pieces) - Colin talks about Life in Pieces on NBC's Today in the 10am hour.
  • Mayim Bialik (The Big Bang Theory/Blossom) - Mayim is a guest on Access Hollywood Live, so check your local listings.
  • Marisa Tomei (A Different World) - Marisa appears on Access Hollywood Live, so check your local listings.
  • Terry Crews (Brooklyn Nine-Nine/Are We There Yet?/Everybody Hates Chris) - Terry is a guest on Steve Harvey, so check your local listings.
  • Betsy Brandt (Life in Pieces/The Michael J. Fox Show) - Betsy talks about Life in PieceS on the AOL Build Show at 12pm.