"Heroes" — Season 1
The first season of NBC's hit sci-fi drama "Heroes" is now available on DVD and it's extras-tacular. The show follows "ordinary" people who happen to have extraordinary powers (invisibility, regeneration, flight, mind reading, time travel, etc.). The 7-disc set features a good number of extras, including (but not limited to): audio commentaries, the 73-minute unaired original pilot episode (along with the option of commentary by Tim Kring), deleted scenes and a whole bunch of behind-the-scenes stuff, like a stunt featurette and a profile on artist Tim Sale. On the HD-DVD you can expect more interactive features, like something called a "genetic abilities test." If you missed this season when it was on TV (and then online), you can catch up with the DVDs before the second season begins September 24.
Three more new releases so
"Friday Night Lights" — Season 1
If you're not hooked on "Friday Night Lights" by the time you're through with this five-disc DVD set, you can get your money back — no joke. The set isn't nearly as loaded with special features as the "Heroes" collection, but it still includes deleted scenes from each of the season's 22 episodes as well as a "making of" featurette. I wish the special features weren't so skimpy, but I'm sure that's what's letting NBC offer the set so cheap ($19.99 most places). And besides, who needs extras when you've got some of the best writing and acting on television to occupy your time?
Year of the Dog
Molly Shannon stars in this quirky, dark indie comedy all about love, loss — and pets. Shannon plays Peggy, whose world revolves around her dog, Pencil. When he suddenly passes away, Peggy feels lost at sea and needs to find something else to consume her attention. The people in her life all have different views on how she should distract herself. Her bubbly girlfriend Layla (Regina King) pushes Peggy to start dating, while cute veterinary assistant Newt (Peter Sarsgaard) urges her to adopt a new dog. Ultimately, though, Peggy has to find her own path. Year of the Dog is extremely endearing, with Shannon turning in a surprisingly touching performance. Special features include a gag reel, a making-of featurette and some interesting interviews with Molly Shannon and writer/director Mike White. Check out my review for more of my thoughts on this movie.
Blades of Glory
This may not be a work of genius, exactly, but it's definitely worth a rent if you want a chuckle. Plus, it stars some of my favorite funny ladies: Amy Poehler and Jenna Fischer. Will Farrell plays Chazz, a male figure skater who has a falling out with his rival Jimmy, played by Napoleon Dynamite's Jon Heder. As a result, the two are banned from competing in the singles' category, so they join forces to compete as a figure-skating pair. For my take on this movie, check out my review.