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DEXTER: THE FIRST SEASON

Placing an entirely new spin on the tried and true genre of police procedurals, DEXTER is one of the most interesting and entertaining shows on television. DEXTER is smartly written and skillfully acted by a terrific ensemble cast. Not only is DEXTER a quality show, it is also a highly addictive one. Daring to tread quite far from the beaten path, DEXTER is one of the most unique television dramas. The show’s uniqueness stems from the fact that the central character is a serial killer… and a really good one to boot. Let’s face it; there has never been another show on television about a friendly neighborhood serial killer, especially when said serial killer is the hero (or should I say anti-hero) of series, whom the audience encouraged to empathize with and is certain to root for.

Based upon Jeff Lindsay’s novel Darkly Dreaming Dexter, DEXTER is the story of serial killer Dexter Morgan (Michael C. Hall), who works for the Miami Metro Police Department as a blood spatter analyst. Despite being a serial killer, Dexter has found a way to put a positive spin on his gruesome predilections. Growing up the adopted son of a police officer, Dexter has been taught to channel his negative tendencies for the general good. Plain and simple… Dexter only kills those truly deserving individuals- in other words, those evildoers who have managed to escape justice. Those closest to Dexter, but completely unaware of how moonlights aware from his day job, include his foster sister Debra Morgan (Jennifer Carpenter), a homicide detective that places her and her brother on continuously intersecting paths and Dexter’s girlfriend Rita Bennett (Julie Benz), whose troubled past with men leaves her suspicious of her boyfriend… but for all the wrong reasons.

Season one of DEXTER finds our hero concerned with a rival serial killer, who leaves his victims completely drained of blood and their disassembled bodies tied up in neat little packages for the Miami Metro Police Department to find. Dubbed The Ice Truck Killer, this rival serial killer is obviously aware of Dexter’s extracurricular activities and plays a dangerous season long game of cat and mouse with blood spatter analyst, one that no one on the department knows about. As the bodies pile up, so do the little trinkets and clues left for Dexter. The cast of DEXTER also features C.S. Lee, Christina Robinson, Lauren Vélez, David Zayas, James Remar, Erik King and Geoffrey Pierson.

DEXTER: THE FIRST SEASON ($55) comes to Blu-ray Disc in a three-disc set that features the following twelve episodes that were aired during the show’s freshman year: Dexter, Crocodile, Popping Cherry, Let's Give The Boy A Hand, Love American Style, Return To Sender, Circle Of Friends, Shrink Wrap, Father Knows Best, Seeing Red, Truth Be Told and Born Free.

CBS/Paramount Home Entertainment via Showtime has made all twelve episodes from DEXTER: THE FIRST SEASON available on Blu-ray Disc in 1.78:1 wide screen presentations that have been encoded onto the disc with the AVC codec. I have to admit I was blown away by the 1080p presentations of these episodes. DEXTER is a good looking series that is made even better by its high definition release on Blu-ray. Clarity, sharpness and fine picture detail, all move to the head of the class for television series production. Colors are quite vibrant and usually highly attractive, although some skewing of the hues does come into play. Blacks are deep, whites are clean and the level contrast goes beyond typical broadcast fare. Some grain/video noise is noticeable in the darker scenes.

All of the episodes that comprise DEXTER: THE FIRST SEASON are presented on Blu-ray Disc with 5.1 channel Dolby TrueHD soundtracks. The fact that these episodes have been released with lossless codec is a very nice touch, one that all companies releasing TV series on Blu-ray should emulate. Coming from the world of television production, the forward soundstage dominates on these episodes, but the rear channels do deliver a few active effects, as well as the expected complement of ambient sounds, as well as a bit of musical fill. While dialogue dominates, one will find some channel separations across the front. Fidelity is very strong, which enhances the musical component and vies a nice realism to sound effects. The bass channel adds all the required weight. Dialogue is crisp and always easy to understand. A Spanish language track has also been encoded onto the disc, as are English subtitles.

Full motion video, animation and sound serve to enhance the disc's interactive menus. Through the menus, one has access to the standard episode selection and set up features, as well as two Audio Commentaries one for the episode Return To Sender and the other for the episode Born Free. The remaining supplements are available via BD-Live (requires a Profile 2.0 player) and include the following: The Academy Of Blood- A Killer Course, Witnessed In Blood- A True Murder Investigation, Michael C. Hall Podcast, first episode of DEXTER, Season 3, and first two episodes of UNITED STATES OF TARA.

Dark, sleek and unique, DEXTER takes a different path than the typical police procedural. The Blu-ray presentation of the episodes comprising DEXTER: THE FIRST SEASON is truly excellent. Highly recommended.

 

DEXTER: THE FIRST SEASON 


Dexter: The Complete First Season [Blu-ray] (2006)

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DVD & Blu-rayDisc reviews are Copyright © 2009 THE CINEMA LASER and may not be copied or reprinted without the written consent of the publisher.
THE CINEMA LASER is written, edited and published by Derek M. Germano.


 

 

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