Plot: What’s it about?
Dr. Samantha Waters (Ally Walker) has a knack with evidence, as she can peruse a crime scene and come up with amazing results. A good officer can devise a lot from the evidence on the scene, but Sam can produce data no one else could. This is because she isn’t just an excellent detective, she also has immense psychic powers. When she handles evidence, her mind works like a normal detective’s would, putting together the basics and trying to uncover what happened, but then she can go beyond the standard techniques. She can see inside the evidence and get a glimpse at the events as they unfolded, which allows her to crack cases that would leave the best officers grasping at straws. But she has been in an exile of sorts, after a serial killer known as the Jack-of-All-Trades murdered her husband. This crushed her to the core, leaving her personal and professional lives in shambles. So she hasn’t been involved in the world of criminal investigation for some time, but she is coaxed back by someone she trusts. Her mentor Bailey Malone (Robert Davi) persuaded her to return and join his Violent Crime Task Force, which works with numerous agencies to solve violent, baffling crimes. But when the past also returns in the form of the serial killer who took her husband, can she solve the most important case of her life
As we all know, the television show C.S.I. has become a runaway success, topping the ratings week in and week out. But before C.S.I. hit the airwaves, we had a series called Profiler, which mined some of the same concepts. In Profiler, the same intense attention to detail, in depth research, and complex use of clues is used, but we have a special twist, as our lead agent happens to have psychic powers. So instead of just finding and analyzing the evidence, she is able to hone in on the clues and derive intimate details. As is the case with C.S.I, some episodes are better than others, but there is a consistent level of solid entertainment. Although some cases don’t hold as much interest as others, none prove to be dull or lifeless. I also like how some cases are resolved within an episode, others over the course of multiple episodes, and some unfold over the entire arc of this third season, quite cool indeed. The psychic angle allows for some cool moments too, kind of like The Dead Zone meets C.S.I., which is a sweet combination. This is by no means a perfect series however, as some episodes come off as weak, but for the most part, Profiler is a terrific show. The cast is solid, lead by Ally Walker (Singles, Bed of Roses) and Robert Davi (Showgirls, Die Hard), both of whom turn in good performances for the duration of the season. So if you’re a fan of C.S.I. or other such crime shows, then you’ll want to give Profiler a look.
As most studios have started to do by now, A&E has released Profiler in season sets, with this being the third set, of course. A&E’s television products have been excellent across the board, which is a trend that continues here with Profiler. This Season 3 collection houses twenty-one episodes spread across six discs, which allows ample space for all the normal content, though little in terms of bonus material is included. I was let down by the lack of supplements in this third volume, as the first season has some great extras. Since this set housed the same number of episodes, I wouldn’t think space was a problem, but perhaps bonus materials were hard to track down this time. The set is still a good one however, with all the season’s episodes, plus some decent extras, though not enough to satisfy fans. But as far as the show is concerned, it looks and sounds good, which is what matters. I would have loved some extras, perhaps even the missing episode from the first season, but the show alone is worth the price of admission. So if you’re even a casual fan of C.S.I. or just love a well crafted detective series, then Profiler is recommended and this third season is superb.
Video: How does it look?
The episodes are presented in full frame, as intended. I found these episodes to be more than acceptable, with no serious flaws to mention. I can’t remember how the show looked on television, but I think it had some grain at times, just for visual effect. I say that because the grain seems natural and part of the visuals, as opposed to a defect that somehow slipped into the transfers at some point or another. The visuals of Profiler can be dark, very dark at times, but A&E has delivered transfers that never falter. So contrast is stark and consistent, with refined and smooth black levels that provide excellent shadow depth and detail level. I found colors to be good also, with bright hues when needed and more toned down shades when called for. A few minor issues do pop up, but on the whole, Profiler looks terrific.
Audio: How does it sound?
The audio here is basic, thanks to the included stereo soundtracks, but all the bases seem to be covered. The nature of the series is one of a natural, subtle audio presence too, so its not like the material screams for dynamic presence. A few scenes could have been boosted a shade, but even then, the experience wouldn’t have been enhanced that much. The sound effects come across in fine form, with the same kind of audio presence you’d expect from a television show, though these days, some do provide a more immersive texture. No troubles with dialogue either, as vocals are clear and crisp throughout the episodes. Not the kind of audio to show off your system with, but I have no complaints about the results.
Supplements: What are the extras?
The lone supplement is an audio commentary track on the episode Heads Up, You Lose. I love commentary tracks on television shows, so I would have loved more of them, but I suppose one is better than none.