NIP/TUCK: THE COMPLETE THIRD SEASON
For my money NIP/TUCK remains one of the most unique and highly addictive dramas on television. As Iíve stated in the past the series is entertainment equivalent of crack cocaine, NIP/TUCK gives a tremendous high while one is engaged with itÖ and once an episode has ended, there you are like a strung out junkie craving another hit. The basic premise of NIP/TUCK follows the personal lives, the practice and exploits (not to mention patients) of two of Miamiís best cosmetic surgeons Sean McNamara (Dylan Walsh) and Christian Troy (Julian McMahon).
Season three of the series starts with the aftermath of Christianís attack by the masked serial slasher/rapist/killer known as The Carver. Christianís extended absence from McNamara-Troy leads Sean to bring in a new partner, Dr. Quentin Costa (Bruno Campos), to pick up the slack left. On the home front, Julia (Joely Richardson) decides she wants divorce from Sean, while Matt (John Hensley) begins to question his own sexuality, as a result of his affair with and older woman. Additionally Christian decides he wants to take his relationship with Kimber (Kelly Carlson) to another level, but not before taking a detour with detective Kit McGraw (Rhona Mitra), who has been put in charge of investigating The Carver case. The season three cast of NIP/TUCK also features Roma Maffia, Jessalyn Gilsig, Willam Belli and Vanessa Redgrave.
NIP/TUCK: THE COMPLETE THIRD SEASON ($60) comes to DVD in a six-disc set that features the following fifteen episodes (including extended season premiere) that were aired year three: Momma Boone, Kiki, Derek, Alex, And Gary, Rhea Reynolds, Granville Trapp, Frankenlaura, Ben White, Tommy Bolton, Hannah Tedesco, Madison Berg, Abby Mays, Sal Perri, Joy Kringle, Cherry Peck and Quentin Costa. As with the preceding two seasons, the themes explored season three of NIP/TUCK remain very adult in nature, plus the show is fairly graphic in its depictions of cosmetic surgery, not to mention that series also features quite a bit of adult language, drug use, strong sexual content and some nudity.
Warner Home Video has made all fifteen episodes from NIP/TUCK: THE COMPLETE THIRD SEASON available on DVD in a 1.78:1 widescreen presentation that features the anamorphic enhancement for 16:9 displays. The episodes look quite good on DVD-- certainly better than broadcast. Image quality is strong for a television production; offering a sharp and nicely defined image. Mild softness creeps in, in places, but otherwise it all looks great for a television show. Colors tend to be strongly saturated, but stable. Blacks are accurate, white are clean and contrast is quite good, even though it maintains the necessities of broadcast television. The film elements from which the episodes are transferred are clean; some very mild grain shows up throughout the episodes. Digital compression artifacts are not a problem.
All the episodes that comprise NIP/TUCK: THE COMPLETE THIRD SEASON come with Dolby Digital 2.0 channel soundtracks that decode to standard surround. Since NIP/TUCK is a talky drama, the episodes really donít require a 5.1 upgrade. As expected, most of the sound remains in the forward soundstage, with occasional directional effects making use of the outlying channels. Fidelity is pretty good for each episodeís musical component and there is a decent bottom end. Dialogue is well rendered and always completely understandable. No other language tracks are provided, but French and Spanish subtitles have been included.
Full motion video, animation and sound serve to enhance the DVD's interactive menus. Through the menus, one has access to standard episode selection and set up features, as well as the supplements that are included with the set. Deleted scenes are scattered throughout the release and are available in the episode menu from which they were deleted. Two featurettes are also included: Chasing The Carver runs nine minutes and looks at one of the key fixtures of the third season, while The Perfect Look: Set Design is a fairly self explanatory program that runs ten minutes.
While there have been some rumblings from fans stating that the third year of NIP/TUCK wasnít up to snuff, I find the series to be still right one the money and just as addictive. Warnerís DVD set offers better presentations than what one finds on cable. If you are a fan NIP/TUCK: THE COMPLETE THIRD SEASON is another must have for your personal library. Recommended.
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