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Miami Vice - Season Two


TITLE: MIAMI VICE - SEASON TWO


Info:

DVD Release Date: December 13, 2005 (Universal Studios Home Entertainment)
Color/1985-1986
MSRP: $59.98
Number of Discs: 3 double-sided
Number of Episodes: 23 (22 if you count the two hour season premiere as one episode)
Running Time: 18 hours, 42 minutes
Total Run Time of Special Features: N/A
Languages, Subtitles, Closed Captioning: Closed-Captioned, English and Spanish subtitles
Special Features: None


Introduction:

The cocaine busts, the hookers, the fast car, the fashions—all in a days work when you are on the Miami Vice Squad! Season Two of what is definitely one of the most innovated dramas of all time (and in my opinion, the greatest police drama of the 1980s) is now available on DVD from Universal Studios Home Entertainment. Complete with every single moment of the show, and every single piece of original music from artists such as Billy Ocean, Glenn Frey, Huey Lewis and the News, U2, Phil Collins, The Power Station, The Who, Foreigner, The Eagles, The Doors, and many, MANY more. Join Sonny Crockett and Rico Tubbs as they chase down all of the bad guys on the roughest streets of Miami.

The second season of Miami Vice is my favorite season of the show… I liked the more "trivial" nature of the first two seasons. Of course, a lot of fans will disagree with that and say that the show became better in the third season when it became more of a real drama and had less kitsch to it, but there were good stories there too. The second season is very similar to the first season as far as the plots of the episodes are concerned, and continues to show the lighter side of Crockett and Tubbs, but at the same time, shows that being part of Miami Vice is one of the roughest and most dangerous jobs of them all.


Memorable Episodes / Notable Guest Stars:

The second season begins with The Prodigal Son Parts 1 and 2 (presented in the original two hour format on DVD), where Crockett and Tubbs travel to New York to, well, capture drug dealers. You may want to look for Gene Simmons in this episode, as he makes a guest appearance. Little Richard guest stars in "Out Where the Buses Don't Run," an episode in which an ex-vice cop suspiciously becomes obsessed with finding a drug dealer. In "Buddies," one of Crockett's friends from Vietnam (who has just made Crockett the godfather of his child) has a father that is out to kill a young mother... can Crockett convince his friend to tell him everything he knows about the situation? Clarence Williams makes a guest appearance in "Tale of the Goat." El Debarge guest stars (as himself, he also guest starred as himself in the sitcom The Facts of Life during the same month that this episode aired) in "Bought & Paid For," an episode in which one of Gina's friends is raped and decides to press charges as Gina encourages her to do... but then suddenly drops the charges. G. Gordon Liddy guest stars in "Back in the World," where a journalist that Crockett was friends with in Vietnam wants Crockett to find a general that smuggled heroin into the United States from Vietnam... but there is more to this than what Crockett knows. Ted Nugent appears in "Definitely Miami." In "Little Miss Dangerous," Tubbs arranges for a woman to move in to a safehouse to protect her from a "Crayon Killer," except the Crayon Killer is somebody that is EXTREMELY close to her. Frank Zappa guest stars in "Payback." Crockett and Tubbs must protect a Latin American poet that has radicals from the extreme right-wing and extreme left-wing in his country out to murder him for different reasons. Richard Belzer, Tommy Chong, and Gary Cole (who almost played the role of Crockett on the show, but lost the role to Don Johnson) guest stars in "Trust Fund Pirates." The season ends with Sons and Lovers, where Crockett and Tubbs learn that Calderone's son (remember Calderone from the first season?) is out to get Tubbs.


Packaging:

If you love consistency, you'll be VERY happy with this packaging. The cover art for Season Two is EXACTLY the same as the Season One cover art, with the only exception being the fact that the background color this time is more of a bluish green color rather than the dark blue color used for Season One. The style of packaging that is used for this set is pretty much the same as the packaging used for Season One—a four panel digipak that can be put into the cardboard sleeve from either the top or the bottom. The only place where you'll notice any changes (and the changes here aren't that significant even) are inside the digipak. The art on the inside of the digipak is different this time, with a snapshot of Crockett and Tubbs holding their guns (but not TOWARDS each other, thankfully) on the two panels that are on the opposite side of the discs, and various other pictures of Crockett and Tubbs on the inside of the digipak. The artwork on the outside of the digipak is the same as Season One, with the same art that is used on the cover on the front and an episode listing on the back of it. Also, even though this set has four panels in the digipak, there are only three double-sided discs. The far left panel had a pocket to insert a Universal TV-on-DVD advertisement booklet in Season One, but this time, there is no pocket on that panel, essentially making it a useless extra panel.

The disc breakdown on the set is as follows: episodes 1-4 on Disc 1/Side A (episodes 1 and 2, The Prodigal Son, is actually presented in the original two hour format, but I am counting them as two separate episodes to avoid confusion), episodes 5-8 on Disc 1/Side B, episodes 9-12 on Disc 2/Side A, episodes 13-16 on Disc 2/Side B, episodes 17-20 on Disc 3/Side A, and episodes 21-23 on Disc 3/Side B.


Menu Design and Navigation:

The menus are very nice… and EXACTLY like Season One. Nothing has really changed for this set, literally. Basically, on the main menu, the theme song plays in the background, and there are various videos from the show playing on the left side of the main menu, with options of Play All, Episode Index, and Languages. Episode Index takes you to an index where, well, you select the episode you want. This menu also has an Episode List option, which tells you which disc you will find any episode you want to find. When you select an episode from the Episode Index menu, the options are Play, Scenes, and Languages, all of which are self-explanatory. On the right side of the screen for each episode is a description of the episode, along with the original air date and some of the guest stars from the episode. When you select Scenes, you can select a starting point wherever you want in the episode from the points where the commercial breaks were originally placed. Additionally, chapters are inserted at these positions. Languages (which is available on the Main Menu and on each episode menu) allows you to turn on subtitles (available in English and Spanish).


Video and Audio Quality:

The video quality on this set is more than adequate for a show that is 20 years old, but it isn't exactly perfect. There is some noticeable grain on the episodes, and the picture could definitely stand to be sharper than it actually is. Don't let that scare you though—it still looks pretty good and these issues aren't severe. The audio quality is excellent, however. Once again, the audio is presented in Dolby Digital 5.1, and is very loud and clear. As already stated, this set includes all of the original music from the original run. For a show that is so dependent upon music, it is vital that the set have great audio quality, and it is great to see that this set is not a disappointment. Closed-captioning is available on the set, as well English and Spanish subtitles. And as far as episode length is concerned, don't worry about edited episodes. Every episode on this set runs at 49 minutes ± 15 seconds.


Special Features:

Something really went wrong here. Season One had a couple of interviews, which honestly, I did not find to be incredibly interesting, but Season Two doesn't have ANY special features at all. The odd thing is that early reports about this set indicated that a "Ride With Vice" featurette would be included… but that apparently did not make it onto the set. At an MSRP of $59.98 (although I do understand that some of that goes towards music rights, which I think many fans do not mind paying extra for), this set really ought to have something special to grab consumers; interviews and commentaries from Don Johnson and/or Philip Michael Thomas are what I (and many fans) would LOVE to see.


Final Comments:

I really wish this set had special features, but with that aside, this set is a very nice set, and any fan of Miami Vice should own this set—and if you aren't a fan, but think the show sounds a little interesting, you should consider trying the show to see if you like it. It really is one of those shows that you will become almost obsessed with once you actually watch some episodes. These DVDs are a great way to watch the show too, since every episode is unedited and contains ALL of the original music. After all, the show just wouldn't be the same without the original music. One thing that I would really like to see is a better (faster) schedule of getting the show released on DVD. The movie version of Miami Vice is scheduled to be released in July, and I wouldn't be one bit surprised to see another season released then, but what I fear is that it will be the third season, and not the fourth season. But in any event, pick up Season Two (and Season One if you still don't have that) while you are waiting, and enjoy the early years of Crockett and Tubbs!


Final Numbers (out of 5 stars - How our point system works)

Video Quality: 4/5
Audio Quality: 5/5
Special Features: 0/5
Menu Navigation/Design: 5/5
Overall: 4/5

-- Reviewed by skees53 on 12/14/2005.

To order the DVD, click below and help support SitcomsOnline.com:

http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/B000BKVKSA/ref=nosim/happydaysonline4-20


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