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DVD Reviews

HTF DVD Review: Mythbusters: Big Blasts Collection



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#1 of 3 Neil Middlemiss

Neil Middlemiss

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Posted December 13 2008 - 05:12 AM

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Mythbusters: Big Blasts Collection




Studio: Discovery Channel
Year: 2008
US Rating: Not Rated
Film Length: 7hrs 21 Minutes
Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1
Audio: English Dolby Digital Stereo
Subtitles: N/A




US Release Date: December 2, 2008

The Show - Posted ImagePosted ImagePosted ImagePosted Image out of Posted ImagePosted ImagePosted ImagePosted ImagePosted Image

"Failure is always an option"


What do you get when you mix Hollywood special effects talents, curiosity about a bevy of myths and a penchant for wanting to blow things up? You get Discovery Channels highlight addictive, fun-on-overdrive show Mythbusters. It takes the warm and happy construct of do-it-yourself and home improvement shows found on ‘TLC’, ‘A&E’ and ‘Home & Garden’ and amps it up with mechanical mayhem and explosive experiments that fall under the guise of science.

Adam Savage and Jamie Hyneman lead a small team of inquisitive, technical and pseudo-scientifically minded individuals that prep, hypothesize and happily perform experiments. Throughout the show’s seasons, they have tackled myths of all sorts, from the stuff you hear in life to the stuff the movies get away with. And let’s face it, the stuff from the movies are the most fun to watch them take on. And beyond the entertainment of watching myths survive or sink the assault of the mythbuster team is watching the inevitability of things going wrong. That’s all part of what makes this show so utterly fun to watch; the charm of it’s semi-controlled chaos and imperfect execution. Rather than pretty, well versed hosts that work hard to show they know what they are doing, we have Adam and Jamie, a playful and professional pair that are perfectly unpolished and satisfied at thinking through tests, and frequently failing for us to watch and enjoy.

When an experiment looks to have busted the myth, the team gets extreme and twists the plan from normal to the most severe of circumstances in order to stoke the chances of an explosive conclusion, or as they explain it, when you can’t replicate the circumstances, replicate the results. And, to no-ones surprise, most experiments exhaust the normal and contentedly jump into ‘let’s see if we can set this thing off’ mode for a big finish.

This collection of Big Blast episodes, the latest DVD collection from the Mythbusters series is good fun and represents some of the shows high points and most entertaining myths. But the real highlight of this collection is the James Bond two parter, testing the gadgets and getaways that have helped Ian Flemming’s seminal spy character through almost two dozen cinematic adventures. Zeroing in on specific elements of the movies, they take on and test things like the electromagnetic watch from Live and Let Die, Jaws’ cable cutting teeth and the propane tank explosion that helps a newly 007 appointed Bond survive an escape from the embassy in Casino Royale, among others.




The Episodes

Disc One
1: Salsa Escape
2: Exploding Port-a-Potty
3: Exploding Pants
4: Air-Cylinder Rocket
5: Exploding Lighter


Disc Two
6: Grenades and Guts
7: Exploding Water Heater
8: Confederate Steam Gun
9: James Bond Special – Part 1
10: James Bond Special – Part 2



The Video - Posted ImagePosted ImagePosted ImagePosted Image out of Posted ImagePosted ImagePosted ImagePosted ImagePosted Image

Mythbusters was filmed at 1.78:1 aspect ratio and shown that way on Discovery Channel HD (one of the best HD stations out there). Presented that way here, enhanced for 16:9 TV’s, it looks good. A bright, lively show that appears very nicely on DVD here with rich colors from the blue of the blue print pages, the sunny locations and the oranges and yellows found in many explosive moments. Even the deep reds of the Salsa from episode one in this collection pop. The image is quite sharp, good clarity throughout and in the absence of watching this show in HD or any potential Blu-Ray release is as good as you could ask for.




The Sound - Posted ImagePosted ImagePosted ImagePosted Image out of Posted ImagePosted ImagePosted ImagePosted ImagePosted Image

The Dolby stereo sound is reasonable; very clear in the center channel, solid, clean sounds form the music in the front channels and even in the surrounds. The many booms and bangs won’t shake the walls of your home, but will bring out the smile with the concrete truck, port-a-potty, water heater and a number of other big ticket items blowing up.



The Extra’s - No Stars out of Posted ImagePosted ImagePosted ImagePosted ImagePosted Image

No extras, no stars.



Final Thoughts

Everything about this show is good fun, from the crazy experiments and onscreen antics all the way to Robert Lee’s narration filled with equal parts awe and sarcasm. This is a great collection of episodes and worth your time if you are a fan. Full season sets are always preferred, but you can’t go wrong with this collection. Fans of the show will have a blast and if the idea of this show appeals to your sense of carnage and amusement pick it up and you’ll quickly become a fan.


Overall Score - Posted ImagePosted ImagePosted ImagePosted Image out of Posted ImagePosted ImagePosted ImagePosted ImagePosted Image

Neil Middlemiss
Kernersville, NC
"Equipped with his five senses, man explores the universe around him and calls the adventure Science" – Edwin Hubble
My DVD Collection

#2 of 3 Brian Borst

Brian Borst

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Posted December 14 2008 - 03:35 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Neil Middlemiss
Adam Savage and Hyneman Jamie lead a small team of inquisitive, technical and pseudo-scientifically minded individuals that prep, hypothesize and happily perform experiments.

I'm sorry, but you got Jamie Hyneman's name backwards Posted Image.

And why are these programs not released chronologically, by season or something? It's not that a couple of episodes whre things get blown up (that's actually all of them Posted Image) aren't fun to watch, but I guess the repetition could kick in sooner than with different subjects in a single season.
Never go out with anyone who thinks Fellini is a type of cheese

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#3 of 3 Neil Middlemiss

Neil Middlemiss

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Posted December 14 2008 - 03:55 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian Borst
I'm sorry, but you got Jamie Hyneman's name backwards Posted Image.

Posted Image Good catch - I wasn't sure how to spell his last name so when I found it on the cover I guess I didn't quite see where I put the cursor to type it in!
"Equipped with his five senses, man explores the universe around him and calls the adventure Science" – Edwin Hubble
My DVD Collection