DVD Review: UGLY BETTY – The Complete Third Season

Buena Vista Home Entertainment
Release date: Sept 22, 2009
MSRP: $59.99

The trouble with the character of Betty Suarez is twofold: it is difficult to believe that Betty would not learn something about style after two-plus years working at a major fashion magazine. She may wear thick glasses, but she isn’t blind, and she’s certainly not dense. However–alter her too much, and the show risks not just jumping the shark, but vaulting over the shark on a turbo-charged pogo stick in a zero gravity vaccuum. You can’t have Ugly Betty without, well, an ugly Betty.

Season three, while not perfect, is a lot of fun. There is less romance for Betty, but more personal growth–she even gets an apartment in the city, and learns how to live a little. There are, of course, dozens of scandals, screw-ups, and misunderstandings along the way. Wilhemina still schemes, Daniel learns to love, and Amanda and Betty become friends. A main character suffers a heart attack, paternity is questioned, and the Suarez family struggles to buy the house they have lived in for decades. Helpfully, the DVD box set includes a primer for those who are new to the show–although anyone not watching by now is unlikely to be converted.

Commentaries, deleted scenes, Mark and Amanda webisodes, and a blooper reel round out the collection.

It remains to be seen what season four will bring. A move to Friday night and a rumored makeover for Betty may be signs that the end is near, but who knows–like Betty Suarez herself, Ugly Betty the series is full of surprises.

Jill Lynch