Saturday, August 15, 2009
Dirty Sexy Money - The Complete And Final Second Season (ABC Studios, $39.99) brings the second (and unfortunately the final) season of the primetime soap on DVD for the first time! One of TV's wittiest and wildest shows, let's get down and dirty with the deliciously scandalous second season of Dirty Sexy Money. This season the Darling family takes drama to new heights in a year filled with deception, suspense, and even murder.
The series did well in the strike-shortened first season, but when it returned for season two the next fall, viewers either forgot about it or it was too long of a period in between episodes (nearly 10 months). The sexy series stars Peter Krause as Nick George, Donald Sutherland as Tripp Darling, William Baldwin as Patrick Darling, Natalie Zea as Karen Darling, Glenn Fitzgerald as Brian Darling, Seth Gabel as Jeremy Darling, Zoe McLellan as Lisa George, Blair Underwood as Simon Elder, with Jill Clayburgh as Letitia Darling and Lucy Liu as Nola Lyons. Recurring are Darcy Rose Byrnes as Kiki George, Will Shadley as Brian Jr., Bellamy Young as Ellen Darling, Candis Cayne as Carmelita, Shawn Michael Patrick as Clark the Chauffeur, Laura Margolis as Daisy, and Sheryl Lee as Andrea Darling. Among the guests are John Schneider, Krista Allen, Dan Rather, Sarah Carter, Scott Holroyd, Samaire Armstrong, Kenny G, Ron Glass, Donna Mills and Gina Torres.
This second season is very good and is very sexy and juicy. We get 13 episodes for this second and final season. For season one, they aired 10, but they actually shot 13 episodes but decided to hold those three episodes for season two. However, the producers decided to scrap those three and implement some of those storylines into new season two episodes. I wish we could see those three episodes as extras at least. Anyway, back to season two...some classic episodes include the season premiere "The Birthday Present," where six months have passed since the events of last season. Even as Lisa and Nick plan to celebrate his birthday privately and quietly, Tripp and Letitia Darling decide to throw a lavish party for Nick on their yacht. In "The Star Witness," The witness testifying against Letitia Darling shocks Nick George, meanwhile Patrick is participating in a senatorial debate monitored by Dan Rather. In "The Verdict," Nick discovers a dirty little secret about Nola during Letitia's murder trial. In "The Summer House," Karen believes she will be fifth time lucky with her marriage to Simon Elder but Tripp and Nick have other ideas as they try to stop the wedding. In what I think might be one of the best hours of TV from last season, the episode "The Plan," has Senator Patrick Darling inviting Carmelita to his inauguration despite being warned by Tripp and Nick, meanwhile Chase makes threats against the Darlings and the end is a shocker. In "The Unexpected Arrival," Simon follows Karen to a clinic, and finds out that she is pregnant, then Karen has to tell Nick that she is expecting Simon's baby. Patrick decides to have an affair with a wife (Krista Allen) of a Congressman (John Schneider) that he needs support from. And the finale "The Bad Guy," Simon is tortured by Nola to get the truth about her brother with the help of Nick and Patrick takes his arrangement with the Congressman's wife to the next step by getting emotionally involved. Those episodes really stand out, but they are all very good but you have to watch them all in order...anything Greg Berlanti gets his hand on is good.
The episodes run usually 42-43 minutes...unedited of course with all the great music intact. There are about 8 chapter stops per episode. The video is digitally mastered and is in widescreen and looks very good! The audio is great and sounds very good, as it is in Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround Sound. This is from the 2008-09 season, so it had better be good.
Packaging has an outer box that you can remove from the top or bottom then you'll see the case inside. The outer box's cover has nice headshots of the cast. The show logo is in the middle, with The Complete And Final Second Season wording on top in white lettering. We have sort of have a blue-teal color scheme. The back of the box has a color scheme of blue-teal, like the front, with a nice cast photo by the Darling airplane and two screenshots below that. Nice details on the show and set is also there along with a nice quote from the New York Post on the top. There is also a section detailing the bonus features box with technical specifications below that out of the box. On the case itself, we have the same artwork as the box...nothing different this time. Opening the case, on the left side we see disc one. Discs two and three are on the right side overlapping each other. I hate that. There is an insert for Blu-ray titles such as Coyote Ugly, The Prestige, and Lost. On the panels itself, we get a nice cast photo that extends to both panels. We also have a disc-by-disc breakdown of episode titles per disc and bonus features details. Each disc matches the set's color scheme, the blue-teal with lettering in white and has nice artwork. Disc one has episodes 1-4 with artwork of a woman's legs and high-heel shoes. Disc two has episodes 5-9 and has artwork of jewelery. Disc three has episodes 10-13 and the bonus features with artwork of a gun surrounded by a few piles of money. When you remove the discs, the panels have nice artwork, as I mentioned.
The menu screen starts off paper money bills with the theme music playing in the background, then we get a camera flash and we get negatives of photos. Those are clips in negative photo form with camera flashes happening once a while, and we get background music playing now. The options on the main menu are Play All, Episode Selection, Set Up, Bonus Features (disc three only), and Sneak Peeks (disc three only). But before the main menu screen comes on disc one, we get some auto sneak peeks of other DVDs: ABC TV DVDs, Desperate Housewives, Grey's Anatomy, The Proposal and Blu-ray titles. Sneak Peeks option is only found on disc three on the main menu and has previews of many titles. Set Up section we have the option of subtitles in English, French or Spanish and how to register your DVD. The Episodes option gives us the episode number, title and a screenshot -- with nice buildings at night in New York. Bonus Features has all the extras listed. All of the sub-menus have different background music. Great job!
Moving on to the bonus features. Before I start, it is disappointing that there are no audio commentaries this time. We still have good featurettes, though. All of them are found on disc three. The first one is titled "Directing the Darlings," and it runs 11:30. Basically this shows us what director Jamie Babbit does in the life of an episode. We get details on the wedding episode from this season. Interviewed are Jamie Babbit, Matthew Gross (executive producer), Craig Wright (executive producer), Seth Gabel, Kelly Van Horn (producer), Zoe McLellan, William Baldwin, Glenn Fitzgerald, and Sheryl Lee. Then we have the featurette "A Total Knockout," that runs 8:40. This is all about the gorgeous Natalie Zea. Cast and crew talk about her and we see spend a day in the life of her on the set. We also get a look at the classic catfight scene between her and Zoe! Interviewed are Natalie Zea, Matthew Gross, William Baldwin, Bob Berlinger (director), Greg Berlanti (executive producer), Bill Chais (supervising producer), Craig Wright, Seth Gabel, Craig Baxley Jr. (stunt coordinator), and Donald Sutherland.
Next up is one last featurette titled "Dirty Sexy Crafty." This runs 9:14 and showcases the craft services crew on the set. How cool they devote an entire featurette on them, especially the the head Josh Kuhn. Interviewed are Bob Berlinger, Josh Kuhn, Craig Wright, William Baldwin, Seth Gabel, Andre Campbell (set production assistant), Glenn Fitzgerald, Matthew Gross, Kelly Van Horn, Zoe McLellan, Patrice Harper (craft services), and Will Shadley. Now I'm hungry, especially for Josh's cookies!
Then we have some "Faux Pas - Bloopers from Season 2." These are outtakes that run only 1:51. Why so short? They just need to put the entire reel in because this is too short. Then finally we have seven deleted scenes that are always interesting to see...and we get more scandals in these, with the highest running 1:11 and lowest at 0:40. The last deleted scene is the most interesting one. I think that is a scene that should have aired after the final scene of the series, which I won't give away if you haven't seen the finale yet.
I highly recommend this series and set. It is so addictive and scandalous! It is unfortunate the show is no more, which is truly a shame. I think it would have worked if it aired after Desperate Housewives. We need a show in primetime like this that just gets us glued to the television and wanting to know what happens next. I hope we see the cast go on to other ABC projects, whether it be guest roles or joining existing series. Natalie Zea needs to be on something! She is amazing. Anyway, complete your collection with this second season set. It is worth it and you'll be wanting to watch the next episode after each one. Need a link to buy it...look below. Done!
-- Reviewed by Pavan
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Stay tuned tomorrow for a special Sunday blog review of Eli Stone - The Complete Second and Final Season.
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03/07 - That '70s Show - The Complete Series - Flashback Edition (Blu-ray)
03/07 - What I Like About You - The Complete Second Season
03/07 - You Me Her - Season One
03/14 - Newhart - The Final (Eighth) Season
03/14 - Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt - Season Two
03/21 - Master of None - Season One
04/04 - Diff'rent Strokes - The Complete Fifth Season
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04/11 - Schitt's Creek - The Complete Third Season
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04/11 - Veep - The Complete Fifth Season
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