Dexter: Season Two (Blu-ray)

January 28, 2012 5 Min Read

Review by: Matt Brighton

Plot: What’s it about?

Of all the television shows out there, there’s only a handful that I sit down and make time to watch. As you might have already guessed, “Dexter” is indeed one of those shows. Now I know what you might be thinking “You make time to watch a TV show about a serial killer?” Yes. Yes I do. The thing about “Dexter”, though, is that it’s anything but typical. As a matter of fact, Dexter (Michael C. Hall) is an employee of the Miami Police Department and is an expert on, ironically enough, blood. If you’re reading this review I’ll assume you’re either familiar with the show or just bored at work. Nevertheless, Dexter came from a troubled childhood and he’s still “guided” by his dead father (James Remar). Dexter has a seemingly normal life with his sister (Jennifer Carpenter and real-life “Mrs. Michael C. Hall”) and has a girlfriend as well (Julie Benz). Yet through it all he manages to find time to rid the world of Miami’s “bad people” or those that managed to slip through the system. Tell me, what other show manages to intertwine vigilante justice against the backdrop of the Miami? He’s back and this is the second season of “Dexter” – the most likeable serial killer to appear on film.

The second season takes place about a month after the first one ended. The mystery of the Bay Harbor Butcher has been solved, though Sgt. James Doakes (Erik King) sees a little more to Dexter than meets the eye. The season will follow the two as they have a few close calls and will eventually come to a head in the swamps of Florida. We also see a continuing relationship with Dexter and Rita (Benz) as Dexter tries to keep his secret away from those who love him most. Perhaps the most intriguing element of the season is Special Agent Frank Lundy (Keith Carradine) who’s shipped in to help out the Miami PD. However, Debra (Carpenter) is infatuated with him and the two share some rather intimate moments. Will the two be able to make it work? Will Dexter’s secret be revealed? Will Doakes be able to expose Dexter? The second season is as good as or possibly better than the first, though arguably it’s a lot less graphic. Fans are treated to more of the same superb acting and stories in one of TV’s best dramas.

Video: How does it look?

I don’t review a lot of television on Blu-ray and this season of “Dexter” looked about as consistent ass the first season. As expected the 1.78:1 AVC HD transfer for each of the dozen episodes look great, just a touch better than they appear in the HD broadcasts. Black levels are strong and contrast seems a bit improved. This sounds odd to say, but “Dexter’s” opening credits are some of the best examples of HD out there. The extreme close ups on the face, eggs and meat. It’s almost surreal but this Blu-ray makes it look pristine. No real complaints here, this is about the best the show can look and it’s an improvement over the standard DVD set, for sure.

Audio: How does it sound?

The Dolby Digital 5.1 soundtrack on the standard DVD set has been replaced by a Dolby TrueHD mix that sounds marginally better, but it’s not something that’s a real selling-point. Like most television shows, the meat (pardon the pun) of the soundtrack is in the dialogue and most of the information is in the front stage. At times the surrounds kick in, but not that often and let’s face it most people aren’t watching this show for the audio. A nice mix, but there are better out there.

Supplements: What are the extras?

Sadly, this three disc set doesn’t have a commentary included. We get the complete season which is a dozen episodes and a few featurette on “Blood Fountains” thrown in. Like the first season, there’s a podcast and four episodes of two other Showtime series: “Nurse Jackie” and “The United States of Tara”. While it’s nice to see more “Dexter” on Blu-ray, hopefully they’ll beef up the extras for future seasons.

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