DVD Review: CSI: season eight

Paramount Home Entertainment
Release date: October 14th, 2008
MSRP: $84.98

Stars: William Peterson, Marg Helgenberger, Jorja Fox, Gary Dourdan, Eric Szmanda, Robert David Hall

Season eight saw the ending of the Miniature Killer storyline (You have no idea how pissed I was at the end of the season seven DVD set when I saw it ended on a cliffhanger.). While that storyline made season seven especially compelling, they do a bang-up job making sure that this season is not a letdown.

One of the most interesting storylines saw Warrick struggle not only with his failing marriage, but a drug problem as well. This is an excellent example of how CSI blends characters into procedural genre. Warrick’s issues, along with the evolution of Grissom and Sara’s relationship kept me hooked even when the technical aspects of the show failed to do so.

Also included is the crossover Without a Trace episode. While it would make sense to always have the other ep from crossovers that does not always happen, because of conflicting studios and distributors.

Extras:
With the season shortened by the strike, the extras are a little lean. We get just two commentary tracks (season seven had seven).

While the Cast’s Away, the Rats Will Play looks at the lab-techs and the episode (You kill me) that featured them. A fun little segment that runs fourteen minutes.

The Eighth season saw film director William Friedkin (The French Connection,To Live and Die in L.A.) direct an episode. William Friedkin: A Different Take looks at that episode, with comments from Friedkin, along with Peterson and co.

Shot in the Dark talks about the camera work and looks at the directors of photography. CSI has always been a visually striking show and this segment gives credit where credit is due.

So Long, Sara Sidle…this one sucks because I do not watch the show on television and was unaware of her departure when I got this set. You don’t even have to watch it, you simply read the damn title! Not cool. This featurette looks at the storyline that contains her departure. Having seen this, I have to say I was struck by how much effort went into making it feel right.

What Happened in Vegas is sort of a review of the overall season. We hear from the usual suspects, with some talk about how they approach the show going into the eighth season.

I would like to tell you about TOD: A Bugs Life, but I can’t handle creepy, crawly things. So I will simply say this segment is supposed to explain the role of insects in forensics.

CSI continues to mix character with plot, and does so rather well. Fans of the series will enjoy season eight, as the quality remains high. Not too many shows can make that claim after eight seasons.

Order season eight of CSI from Amazon.

Jeremy Lynch
For more reviews from myself, and the rest of the Crimespree crew, check out the index of reviews.