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Tuesday, August 19, 2014

REVIEW: The Walking Dead - The Complete Fourth Season (Anchor Bay Blu-ray)

If there was a season that separated out the people who loved The Walking Dead from those that outright despised it, season four may have been the second most divisive only surpassed by season two. The first half of the season was a jaw dropper with some absolutely twisted events, high action and gut churning suspense. The second half of the season was a slow burn, developing story with characters discovering themselves and each other as well as a potential road to salvation. As a fan of the series, this was not my favorite season yet. It was my second favorite after season three. Season four felt like a pleasant hangover of season three, with the governor still lurking in the shadows, the prison in tact and many of our favorite characters alive despite some fall favorites in season three.This is not a bad thing; it was almost a welcome come down from the battle royale of season three. 

My guess is that if you loved season three, season four probably gave you something to hope for through the first half while sort of letting you down for the second half. You wanted more action; the same issue taken by most fans concerning season two only in this case, the second half of the season was slow and the first half was a mountain of various sub-dramas and character introductions. If you missed season four this is the best way to experience it complete with some extras to fulfill the ardent fan and newbie. You could wait for the marathon that is sure to come prior to the season five debut, but this contains no commercials, has lots to offer and really looks great. 

Most of the extra scenes are just filler, but they do complement the stories we've come to love. You can enjoy them out of context though I'm not entirely certain that in context they would have added much to the story. Of course you get a Making of featurette, focus on Herschell and the Governor, a sort of survival guide and, one my favorites extras, the KNB EFX experience. I thank fuck all the time that we have a show on TV that features, prominently a special effects driven show. Sure they use some shit CG every now again, but it is balanced with very effective practical. The set also contains a variety of commentary and extended episodes. Perhaps the most important of all extras involves the season finale. We all have seen the leaked "what might have been" seen where Rick gets frisky and drops an F bomb. You can check it out in this set; it's very effective. 


TECH SPECS:

Blu-ray™:

· Color

· 1.78:1 Aspect Ratio – Enhanced for 16x9 Televisions

· Not Rated

· 696 Minutes

· English: Dolby TrueHD 7.1/French: Dolby Surround 2.0

· English Subtitles for the Deaf & Hearing Impaired

· Spanish Subtitles

DVD:

· Color

· 1.78:1 Aspect Ratio – Enhanced for 16x9 Televisions

· Not Rated

· 688 Minutes

· English: Dolby Digital 5.1/French: Dolby Surround 2.0

· English Subtitles for the Deaf & Hearing Impaired

· Spanish Subtitles

BONUS FEATURES:

Blu-ray™

Extended Episodes:

· Episodes 9 (“After”), and 14 (“The Grove”) are extended on the Blu-ray™ only.

Featurettes:

· Inside THE WALKING DEAD

· The Making of THE WALKING DEAD

· Drawing Inspiration

· Hershel

· The Governor Is Back

· Society, Science & Survival

· Inside KNB EFX

· A Journey Back to Brutality

· Deleted Scenes

Commentaries:
Episode 1 (“30 Days Without An Accident”): Audio Commentary with Executive Producer and Showrunner Scott M. Gimple, Executive Producer/Unit Production Manager Tom Luse and Executive Producer/Special Effects Make-Up Supervisor/Director Greg Nicotero
Episode 5 (“Internment”): Audio Commentary with Executive Producer and Showrunner Scott M. Gimple and Actor Scott Wilson(Hershel)
Episode 9 (“After”): Audio Commentary with Executive Producer/Special Effects Make-Up Supervisor /Director Greg Nicotero, Co-Executive Producer Denise Huth and Actor Danai Gurira (Michonne)
Episode 12 (“Still”): Audio Commentary with Director Julius Ramsayand Actor Emily Kinney (Beth); Audio Commentary with Writer/Producer Angela Kang and Actor Norman Reedus (Daryl)
Episode14 (“The Grove”): Audio Commentary with Executive Producer and Showrunner Scott M. Gimple, Executive ProducerDenise Huth and Actor Andrew Lincoln

DVD

Featurettes:
Inside THE WALKING DEAD
The Making of THE WALKING DEAD
Drawing Inspiration
Hershel
The Governor Is Back
Society, Science & Survival
Inside KNB EFX
A Journey Back to Brutality
Deleted Scenes

Commentaries:
Episode 1 (“30 Days Without An Accident”): Audio Commentary with Executive Producer and Showrunner Scott M. Gimple, Executive Producer/Unit Production Manager Tom Luse and Executive Producer/Special Effects Make-Up Supervisor /Director Greg Nicotero
Episode 5 (“Internment”): Audio Commentary with Executive Producer and Showrunner Scott M. Gimple and Actor Scott Wilson(Hershel)
Episode 12 (“Still”): Audio Commentary with Director Julius Ramsayand Actor Emily Kinney (Beth); Audio Commentary with Writer/Producer Angela Kang and Actor Norman Reedus (Daryl)
Episode 14(“The Grove”): Audio Commentary with Director Michael E. Satrazemis and Actors Chad L. Coleman (Tyreese) and Melissa McBride (Carol)


The Walking Dead - The Complete Fourth Season is Available Now. It's available wit Blu-ray and Digital HD/Ultraviolet code. 

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