DVD Review: Serenity (Collector’s Edition)

I am writing this with the assumption that you have already seen Firefly the series. If not, go out and buy it right now. Seriously, purchase it and your life will have more value…or at least more quality to it.

Firefly the series was perhaps the most critically acclaimed show to never get a chance. Seriously, it was on one week, then off the next. The episodes were shown out of order, with some never being shown at all.

Upon hitting the shelves on DVD, Firefly immediately became a huge success. It seems that those folks that were able to find the damn show liked it enough to buy the series.

Those sales were strong enough to get a film green lighted.

Serenity picks up after the series and tells the story of River, a young passenger on the starship Serenity who was subject to experiments by the government. The idea was to turn her into a perfect killing machine. Since the government put so much time and energy into her, they naturally want her back.

An assassin is sent in pursuit and now the fun begins. We see the crew of mercenaries suddenly finding a cause to believe in–to die for if need be.

Serenity is best if one has already seen the Firefly series (hence my urging that you get Firefly), but even by itself it is entertaining. The characters are colorful and the banter is delightful.

This set is jacked to the gills with extras. We get all of the goodies from the first DVD release, as well as some new ones.

Of note is a new commentary track with most of the cast. The original commentary track (also included here) was just Whedon and was excellent. This one, while not quite as good, is very enjoyable and does not overlap too terribly much. The original went into great detail about how the film came to be, with the director’s thoughts on the process, while the cast track is filled with more anecdotes and humor.

There are seven featurettes here, three from the previous package and four new ones. Honestly, the best of the bunch are from the previous package, which is not to say that the new ones are not entertaining. Of note is Take a Walk on Serenity which is a short, but funny tour of the ship.

Session 416 is a series of grainy scenes that are set during River’ stay at the Academy. These apparently were shown online prior to the release of the film, though this is the first time I have seen them. With each clip, we see River slowly being broken and pushed closer to the edge.

Also included are deleted scenes, extended scenes and a blooper reel. The reel is amusing but the cut material really does not contain anything too amazing. Decent stuff that will be enjoyed by die hard fans, but nothing that would have added to the quality of the film.

The world of Serenity and Firefly is a magical one, the Wild West set in space, and is worth owning.

I highly recommend both this set as well as the series for fans of westerns as well as sci-fi.
Order Serenity from Amazon.

Jeremy

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