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A Few Words About A few words about...™ The Walking Dead: The Complete Second Season -- in Blu-ray (1 Viewer)

Robert Harris

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I'm a fan of this series, which to me seems to rise far above it graphic novel roots, to a point at which, if one were unaware, the idea of those roots might never come to mind.

Shot in Super 16, around various locations in Georgia, inclusive of Riverwood Studios, the series projects a seemingly constant atmosphere of dread, around which the lead characters work to get along, to hold together their bit of civilized culture, and to simply try to survive.

Reference tells me that the series is shot on Kodak Vision3 500T stock, which gives it a beautifully granular sheen, and a slightly rough-hewn look, which may also help to hide any seams between production photography and the VFX backgrounds and plates shot on 35mm.

The major set-piece in the first few episodes is a multi-lane highway, filled with abandoned vehicles, which needed to be opened for traffic at times, and all vehicles removed and replaced as they were. Interestingly, some vehicles -- I defy you to figure out which ones -- are CGI, as are some of the "walkers." Just beautifully produced.

It doesn't take long for viewers to become entrenched in lives of the cast, which makes an occurrence in episode seven one one the most affecting I recall from episodic TV. For those who view the series on Blu-ray, please no spoilers.

I tend to view episodic TV on different monitors -- usually on a 50 or 55 panel, then checking quality in projection with proper audio reproduction.

And it was in projection that I noticed something unusual, and it wasn't the perfect grain structure, which is shown off on a large screen.

It was the audio.

Which literally came alive. I had to go to the packaging to confirm what my system was telling me. This show was posted in Doby TrueHD 7.1 -- discreet channels for cable product. It was obvious the first time that effects and ambiance came into play, and I was immensely impressed. Not only with the quality of the audio -- Dolby has been there for years, and my work on Lawrence, Spartacus and My Fair Lady were all finished in six-track Dolby SR...

But this was something else. Above and beyond, and it needs to be heard to fully understand the care that is going into these productions.

Glorious S16mm imagery, combined with a far higher level of audio quality that one might imagine for a cable production, makes this Blu-ray, from Anchor Bay, a winner in my home theater.

Image - 5

Audio - 5

Highly Recommended.

RAH
 

TravisR

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Robert Harris said:
I'm a fan of this series, which to me seems to rise far above it graphic novel roots, to a point at which, if one were unaware, the idea of those roots might never come to mind.
It's a cliche to say but the comic books are much better than the series. That's not really a knock against the TV show because the comic has the freedom of not having budgetary constraints and it can get much more grim, violent and bleak than a TV show can ever be.
 

JoshZ

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TravisR said:
It's a cliche to say but the comic books are much better than the series. That's not really a knock against the TV show because the comic has the freedom of not having budgetary constraints and it can get much more grim, violent and bleak than a TV show can ever be.
Meh. I read the comic up through the point where the show is currently (end of the second season). Took me all of two hours from start to finish. Didn't find it all that impressive.
If the TV show has a tendency to stagnate without much happening from week to week, the comic has the exact opposite problem. Everything is expedited to a ridiculous pace. A character get shot in the chest and is fully recovered four panels later. Every issue of the comic seems to follow the same basic pattern:
Panel 1 - "Thank heavens we've found this safe haven away from all the zombies."
Panel 2 - "OH MY GOD, A ZOMBIE'S EATING MY FACE!!!"
Panel 3 - "Man, that was a shame that xxx got eaten by a zombie. Good thing we found this new safe haven with no zombies around."
Panel 4 - "AAAARGGGHHHH!!! MY ARM JUST GOT TORN OFF BY A ZOMBIE!!!!"
Panel 5 - "Whew, we just barely escaped those zombies and made it to this new safe ha..."
Panel 6 - "HOLY $#[email protected]!! ZOMBIES EVERYWHERE!!!!"
Etc.
Etc.
Etc.
Etc.
The comic just hit its 100th issue, right? If faithfully adapted, the entire run would supply the TV show with maybe 5 episodes worth of content.
I'll continue to watch the TV show, but I don't feel any need to read more of the comic.
 

FoxyMulder

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Great show, just finished watching the second series a few weeks back on Channel 5, now i have to wait a whole year for season 3, i hate that, i thought the final episode was exciting and set things up nicely for the third season.
 

Robert Harris

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As I viewed S2 of The Walking Dead, one thought kept coming back to me, and I didn't make the point in my original comments.

Back in 1967, in only his second film, a young actor named Scott Wilson created an indelible performance in In Cold Blood. Over the following decades, in films both good and not so good, he continues to give us high quality performances.

His Hershel Greene in this series is a wonderful reminder of precisely how good he can be.

RAH
 

cineMANIAC

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I always thought the show looked a little drab on cable television. Maybe I had the settings on my Plasma flatscreen wrong but it certainly didn't look like high definition. I've decided to skip the broadcast version of the upcoming third season and just wait for the eventual Blu-ray.
 

Robert Harris

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Originally Posted by cineMANIAC /t/323041/a-few-words-about-the-walking-dead-the-complete-second-season-in-blu-ray#post_3964168
I always thought the show looked a little drab on cable television. Maybe I had the settings on my Plasma flatscreen wrong but it certainly didn't look like high definition. I've decided to skip the broadcast version of the upcoming third season and just wait for the eventual Blu-ray.
On Blu-ray it looks like film.
 

dana martin

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Originally Posted by Robert Harris /t/323041/a-few-words-about-the-walking-dead-the-complete-second-season-in-blu-ray#post_3964158
As I viewed S2 of The Walking Dead, one thought kept coming back to me, and I didn't make the point in my original comments.

Back in 1967, in only his second film, a young actor named Scott Wilson created an indelible performance in In Cold Blood. Over the following decades, in films both good and not so good, he continues to give us high quality performances.

His Hershel Greene in this series is a wonderful reminder of precisely how good he can be.

RAH
and that second film is a great blu ray release, imo
 

Bryan^H

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Robert Harris said:
I'm a fan of this series, which to me seems to rise far above it graphic novel roots, to a point at which, if one were unaware, the idea of those roots might never come to mind.
Shot in Super 16, around various locations in Georgia, inclusive of Riverwood Studios, the series projects a seemingly constant atmosphere of dread, around which the lead characters work to get along, to hold together their bit of civilized culture, and to simply try to survive.
Reference tells me that the series is shot on Kodak Vision3 500T stock, which gives it a beautifully granular sheen, and a slightly rough-hewn look, which may also help to hide any seams between production photography and the VFX backgrounds and plates shot on 35mm.
The major set-piece in the first few episodes is a multi-lane highway, filled with abandoned vehicles, which needed to be opened for traffic at times, and all vehicles removed and replaced as they were.  Interestingly, some vehicles -- I defy you to figure out which ones -- are CGI, as are some of the "walkers."  Just beautifully produced.
It doesn't take long for viewers to become entrenched in lives of the cast, which makes an occurrence in episode seven one one the most affecting I recall from episodic TV.  For those who view the series on Blu-ray, please no spoilers.
I tend to view episodic TV on different monitors -- usually on a 50 or 55 panel, then checking quality in projection with proper audio reproduction.
And it was in projection that I noticed something unusual, and it wasn't the perfect grain structure, which is shown off on a large screen.
It was the audio.
Which literally came alive.  I had to go to the packaging to confirm what my system was telling me.  This show was posted in Doby TrueHD 7.1 -- discreet channels for cable product.  It was obvious the first time that effects and ambiance came into play, and I was immensely impressed.  Not only with the quality of the audio -- Dolby has been there for years, and my work on Lawrence, Spartacus and My Fair Lady were all finished in six-track Dolby SR...
But this was something else.  Above and beyond, and it needs to be heard to fully understand the care that is going into these productions.
Glorious S16mm imagery, combined with a far higher level of audio quality that one might imagine for a cable production, makes this Blu-ray, from Anchor Bay, a winner in my home theater.
Thanks Robert.
I agree, the "rough-hewn" look fits this series. I also noticed the stellar audio presentation here. Although I only have a 5.1 set up, the ambient sounds in certain channels blew me away, so I have decided to get another pair of speakers to take full advantage of the 7.1 technology. Something that lately I see is becoming a little more common on Blu-ray titles.
Watching the season opener again on Blu-Ray was so very different than on cable last year. As a 90 minute episode(roughly 30 minutes of commercials) on AMC I was cursing a blue streak. One of the most suspenseful episodes of the entire series, and there were commercial breaks every 7 to 10 minutes to completely ruin the moment. Watching it on Blu-Ray un-interrupted.....priceless!
 

Paul_Scott

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Just started watching the second season the other night and just finished ep 4.
I'd heard rumblings as this season originally aired that fans weren't happy with the direction or pace or whatever of these first eps, and IIRC Darabont exits not too far from where I am now. All I can say is that I'm enjoying this as consistently as I enjoyed the first season, which was a great deal.
One of the most satisfying things about this production for me as how natural they are trying to keep the look. No teal/orange, no hyper contrast to be edgy. I realize the image has been digitally adjusted - but the effect is transparent. Like a girl who knows how to use make-up to make it look like she's not wearing make-up.
 

FoxyMulder

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Originally Posted by Paul_Scott /t/323041/a-few-words-about-the-walking-dead-the-complete-second-season-in-blu-ray#post_3976048
Just started watching the second season the other night and just finished ep 4.
I'd heard rumblings as this season originally aired that fans weren't happy with the direction or pace or whatever of these first eps, and IIRC Darabont exits not too far from where I am now. All I can say is that I'm enjoying this as consistently as I enjoyed the first season, which was a great deal.
One of the most satisfying things about this production for me as how natural they are trying to keep the look. No teal/orange, no hyper contrast to be edgy. I realize the image has been digitally adjusted - but the effect is transparent. Like a girl who knows how to use make-up to make it look like she's not wearing make-up.

Maybe we should get a memo to Mr Spielberg and Co.
 

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