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The Complete First Season
Rating: TV PG (Dialogue, Language)
Running Time: 257 minutes
Starring: Bryan Greenberg, Laura Prepon
Retail Price: $29.99
Features: October Road: The Journey Begins, Deleted Scenes, Bloopers, Season Two Preview
Specs: 1.78:1 Anamorphic Widescreen, English Dolby Digital 5.1, English Subtitles, Scenes (8 per episode), Two-Disc Set
Released: October 30th, 2007
All six episodes of this first season of "October Road" are presented in 1.78:1 anamorphic widescreen. These are lovely transfers that have a warm glow, much like the show's beautiful backdrops. The image quality on these episodes are very sharp, and they all look pristine. I was very impressed by the detail, and how accurate the fleshtones seemed to be. Black levels are deep, and color saturation is pretty vibrant - what's going on on the screen really comes out at you. The only flaws I noticed are some edge halos and noise, but they often aren't too bad.
The first season is given the English 5.1 Dolby Digital treatment. These are nice mixes, with very crisp dialogue (crisp as all those leaves falling in the exterior scenes!) that's clear and easy to hear. The original music cues for the show do sound pretty fresh through the channels, while subwoofer use is pretty non-existent. Given that this show has a lot of dialogue, there isn't much in the way of surrounds. Rears are often used for small, directional effects (like footsteps, background noises at a hospital, etc.). I guess the best way to describe the 5.1 mixes of the series is a lot like elements in the series: quaint.
English closed captions and English subtitles are included on the disc.
The set has six brief Deleted Scenes, one in full screen and the rest in anamorphic widescreen. There's also a very short Bloopers reel in anamorphic widescreen (it lasts only a minute and a few seconds), and a short Season Two Preview that lasts about two-and-a-half minutes. The writers and cast discuss discuss what plot developments will occur in upcoming season. Even though some of what will transpire seems pretty obvious based on the first few episodes of the seasons, those who want to be fully surprised may want to skip this.
That leaves the only meat on this DVD set, a short featurette lasting nearly 10 minutes called October Road: The Journey Begins. Director/Executive Producer Fleder discusses the beginnings of the series, and Writer/Executive Producer Scott Rosenberg and Writer/Executive Producer Josh Applebaum also give their inspirations in creating the series (namely Scott Rosenberg - who penned the film "Beautiful Girls" - had to contend with old friends' feelings about the semi-autobiographical film). A lot of discussion is on the basics of the series, what makes it relatable to the audience, the casting, and how the actors relate to their characters. Throwing their thoughts out there is Writer/Executive Producer André Nemec, and the main cast. There are some interesting tidbits, but nothing too insightful. It's a decent watch, and hey, better than nothing, right?
The first season for "October Road" is a small one - only six episodes (it was a midseason replacement, after all). The show borders on clichés at times, but I am curious where this series will go. Newcomers to the show and existing fans should be pleased by the set's modest offerings.