TITLE: THE BIG BANG THEORY - THE COMPLETE SECOND SEASON
DVD Release Date: September 15, 2009 (Warner Home Video)
Number of Discs: 4
Number of Episodes: 23
Running Time: approx. 481 minutes
Running Time of Special Features: approx. 35 minutes
Languages, Subtitles, Closed Captioning: English & Portuguese languages; English, French, Espanola, Portuguese, Chinese & Thai subtitles
Special Features: “The Big Bang Theory: Physicists to the Stars,” “Testing the Infinite Hilarity Hypothesis in Relation to The Big Bang Theory,” and Gag Reel.
The science of funny is back on DVD with a full season of laughs that will test the hilarity hypothesis! Leonard and Sheldon are back for more great adventures with their pals Wolowitz and Raj, with the beautiful Penny joining in on the fun. This hilarious traditional comedy called The Big Bang Theory airs Monday nights on CBS and now you can own the hilarious 23-episode second season on DVD from Warner Home Video!
The Big Bang Theory is executive produced by Chuck Lorre (Two and a Half Men, Roseanne) and Bill Prady (Dharma & Greg, Gilmore Girls) and stars two TV kids who are all grown up -- Johnny Galecki, who played Darlene’s boyfriend on "Roseanne," and Kaley Cuoco, who played John Ritter’s daughter on "8 Simple Rules... For Dating My Teenage Daughter.” Jim Parsons (Judging Amy) plays Sheldon. Also on for the geeky ride are Leonard and Sheldon’s two friends Howard Wolowitz (played by Simon Helberg) and Rajnesh Koothrappali (played by Kunal Nayyar). Joining the cast this season as a regular is Sara Gilbert playing Leslie Winkle.
Memorable Episodes / Notable Guest Stars:
The second season is just as hood as the first season, if not better! For this season, Jim Parsons is nominated for an Emmy Award for the character of Sheldon. Sheldon is probably the best and funniest character with his lines, but they overused him I thought in later episodes in season one. This season it is more of an ensemble and the development of each character are clearly defined. This is also the season where the show grew in the ratings throughout the season, especially from December-March. Penny was used better I think in season two than in season one. The more Penny, the better! Anyway, the season starts off with the episode “The Bad Fish Paradigm” as Penny and Leonard return from the restaurant while Howard and Rajesh spy on them, using a webcam on the corridor connected to a laptop as the date with Penny didn’t go as well as Leonard thought. In the very next episode, “The Codpiece Topology,” Penny is with a new guy, Eric, prompting a jealous Leonard to pursue a relationship with fellow physicist Leslie Winkle and all the guys as well as Leslie humiliate Leonard for his apparent failure to keep Penny. In “The Panty Pińata Polarization,” Penny plans revenge when Sheldon bans her from the guys' apartment, while Howard and Rajesh use the latest technology to try to find the house being used in "America's Next Top Model." In “The Bath Item Gift Hypothesis,” much to Lenonard's disappointment, Penny suddenly develops an interest in science when a sexy new physicist joins the lab; meanwhile, Sheldon struggles to find an appropriate Christmas gift for Penny. In “The Killer Robot Instability,” Howard becomes depressed after Penny makes a cruel statement about his love life, while the rest of the guys prepare for a grudge killer robot duel against an obnoxious colleague at the university. In “The Maternal Capacitance,” Sheldon hits it off with Leonard's psychoanalyst mother, but she drives Leonard and Penny to the bottle. In “The Cushion Saturation,” Howard hooks up with Leslie, while Penny accidentally ruins Sheldon's spot on the couch. In “The Dead Hooker Juxtaposition,” Penny becomes jealous when a gorgeous new neighbor attracts the guys' attention. In the season finale, “The Monopolar Expedition,” Penny gets upset when she finds out Leonard and the guys plan to work at the North Pole for the summer.
Notable guest stars for this season include Sara Rue, Christine Baranski, Summer Glau, Kevin Sussman, Jodi Lyn O’Keefe, Carol Ann Susi, Mark Harelik, Brian George, and Charlie Sheen as himself.
The packaging has a thin outer box that holds a case once again. Both the box and case has the same artwork for the cover, but not the back. The cover art is primarily in white with an IQ chart in the background (like of a height chart). The show logo is in the middle of the cover art, with The Complete First Season line in white lettering in a turquoise background all the way on the top. Below the show logo we have each of the main cast testing out the IQ chart, as Sheldon is the highest but Penny is jumping in the air so she has the highest IQ. It is quite a funny cover art. The back of the outer box has details on the series and set, along with special features, technical details, and credits. We also have a nice quote on top from Michael Ausiello of EW and a nice episodic photo from the season’s second episode where they dressed up from Renaissance era. The back of the case has an episodic photo with Leonard on the computer as they all surround him and look at the monitor.
When we open the case, we see an episode listing booklet on the left panel. The booklet has the same cover art as the thin outer box and case. The episodes are listed by disc, and has the episode number, title, writers, story by, director, original airdate and of course a short synopsis of the episode. The booklet insert is filled with lots of photos, too, such as a much bigger shot from the Renaissance costumes that we see on the back of the box. The back of the booklet has full-body photos of the five main stars with their name and character name below them. As for the disc placement, there are two little disc holders in the middle. The holder is like a book, meaning you can flip it back and forth. The front side holds one disc and the back side holds another disc. So holder one holds discs one & two, while holder two holds discs three & four. I like this since the discs don’t overlap.
Disc artwork is in the same vein as the packaging, white background with the IQ chart. Disc one has a photo of Sheldon and holds episodes 1-6. Disc two has a photo of Leonard and episodes 7-12, disc three has a photo of Penny and holds episodes 13-18, and disc four has a photo of Howard & Raj and the special features. The panels have a white background with formulas.
Menu Design and Navigation:
The menu screen is similar in vein to the packaging and such. It has a white background, the same cast shot as the cover art. The catchy theme song from The Barenaked Ladies is playing in the background. Before we detail the main menu, before the main menu on disc one, we have an auto trailer for Warner Blu-ray DVDs. Anyway, on to the Main Menu, the options are Play, Episodes, Languages, and Features. Features option is only on disc four, more on that later in this review. Languages option gives us the options to have subtitles in English, French, Espanol, Portuguese, Chinese or Thai...wow two more languages added from season one. The audio is available in English and now also Portuguese. The episodes option is very simple; it lists the episode number and title once again. So again, a simple but efficient menu, it just needed a bit of a change on each disc.
Video and Audio Quality:
The video and audio are excellent. The series aired in HD on CBS this past season, so why wouldn’t it be excellent? The DVD has the video in widescreen and a nice stereo sounding sound. No complaints from me! Anything less would be a total disappointment for a current show on DVD. Each episode on this set has 4 chapter stops each, so you can jump to scenes faster. The episodes are obviously unedited, but these days the sitcoms are so short. The time vary per episode with most episodes either in the 20 or 21 minute mark in general, some a bit lower though like the fifth one is at 19:57 and if you think that is low the 22nd one is 18:34. I think they just ran short, so nothing is edited but it is so short. The 18:34 one was a good episode but it just felt rushed to me. I don’t think the series used much music in the episodes, and there is no disclaimer saying any music has changed. Warner Home Video is usually good in this regard, unlike CBS Paramount.
Here are the runtimes of each episode:
1. "The Bad Fish Paradigm" (21:45)
2. "The Codpiece Topology" (21:11)
3. "The Barbarian Sublimation" (21:11)
4. "The Griffin Equivalency" (21:19)
5. "The Euclid Alternative" (19:57)
6. "The Cooper-Nowitzki Theorem" (20:56)
7. "The Panty Pińata Polarization" (21:07)
8. "The Lizard-Spock Expansion" (20:05)
9. "The White Asparagus Triangulation" (21:02)
10. "The Vartabedian Conundrum" (21:16)
11. "The Bath Item Gift Hypothesis” (21:00)
12. "The Killer Robot Instability" (21:20)
13. "The Friendship Algorithm" (21:24)
14. "The Financial Permeability" (21:32)
15. "The Maternal Capacitance" (20:53)
16. "The Cushion Saturation" (21:15)
17. "The Terminator Decoupling" (21:16)
18. "The Work Song Nanocluster" (20:30)
19. "The Dead Hooker Juxtaposition" (20:22)
20. "The Hofstadter Isotope" (20:09)
21. "The Vegas Renormalization" (21:31)
22. "The Classified Materials Turbulence" (18:34)
23. "The Monopolar Expedition" (21:15)
For the season one DVD, we had one special feature but for this second season we have three! The first special feature is a featurette titled “The Big Bang Theory: Physicists to the Stars” (10:08). The series actually does have a science consultant on the show that gives them ideas and these physics formulas. Dr. David Saltzberg is that consultant. He is a physicist and professor at UCLA. Interviewed on this featurette are Chuck Lorre (creator), Bill Prady (executive producer), Johnny Galecki (Leonard), Jim Parsons (Sheldon), Simon Helberg (Wolowitz), Kaley Cuoco (Penny), and David Saltzberg PhD. Next up we have the featurette “Testing the Infinite Hilarity Hypothesis in Relation to The Big Bang Theory” (15:30). This is the best special feature I think on this DVD. The cast and crew talk in detail about the characters, the storylines, the series in general, and how much the show has developed from day one. Interviewed are Chuck Lorre (creator), Bill Prady (executive producer), Johnny Galecki (Leonard), Jim Parsons (Sheldon), Simon Helberg (Wolowitz), Kaley Cuoco (Penny), and Kunal Nayyar (Raj). And finally we have a Gag Reel (8:51). This of course is bloopers and outtakes from this season. See what happens when Kaley Cuoco messes up! This show does test the hilarity hypothesis, doesn’t it?
I think Warner Bros. has done a good job with this set. The special features quantity went up, and this shows got even better in quality and ratings in season two. The set is on par really with the first season DVD, but I give this one the edge due to more special features...though this is a bit more expensive than the first season DVD. Jim Parsons (Sheldon) is up for an Emmy for Lead Actor in a Comedy Series. Will he take it? Find out next Sunday (Sept. 20, 2009).
Season three begins Sept. 21 on CBS at a new time of 9:30pm ET/PT, but if you need to catch up, this DVD is the perfect way to do it, as it comes out Sept. 15--a week before the start of the season. So don’t go knocking on Penny’s door like Sheldon does (knock, knock “Penny,” knock, knock “Penny,” knock, knock “Penny) for this DVD, because you can order it below with a click instead of two knocks and saying Penny! It all started with a big BANG!
Final Numbers (out of 5 stars - How our point system works)
Video Quality: 5/5
Audio Quality: 4.5/5
Special Features: 3/5
Menu Design/Navigation: 4/5
-- Reviewed by pavanbadal
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