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The Originals Season 1 DVD Review

The Originals Season 1 DVD

“The Originals” is an uninspired spin-off series.

After “The Vampire Diaries” proved to be a major hit for CW, the network decide to greenlight a spin-off series set in New Orleans called “The Originals.” In this series, the narrative primarily focuses on the “original” vampires Klaus, Elijah and Rebekah (AKA the Mikaelson family). Throughout the 22 episode inaugural season, viewers can expect to see plots about Marcel (a former protégé of Klaus) ruling New Orleans, witches (such as Sophie and Genevieve), a werewolf (Hayley) who is pregnant with the child of Klaus, a powerful witch named Davina, a bartender (Camille), the werewolf Tyler Lockwood, hybrids, a mystery surrounding a supposedly dead witch (Celeste) who was a former lover of Elijah, warlocks, battles between Klaus and Marcel, Mikael (the father of the Mikaelsons), a priest (Father Kieran), and Francesca (a werewolf).

In an age where “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” is available to binge watch and the fantastically nasty and underrated “The Strain” is currently airing, a watered down YA vampire series feels positively archaic. Sure, the show has supernatural romantic plotlines and sex appeal with a hunky star like Joseph Morgan (who plays fan favorite Klaus), but those elements have been so played out after the “Twilight” phenomenon came and went. I could see the appeal if the show had something new to offer, but it doesn’t. While “The Vampire Diaries” is certainly nothing special, that series at least has a likable lead character in Ian Somerhalder’s Damon Salvatore. With “The Originals,” the entire series feels lifeless as the bland ensemble cast and the clumsy and convoluted screenplays make watching episodes feel like a chore.

Video/Audio:

Presentation: Widescreen. How does it look? The series looks fine in standard definition. It should be noted that a Blu-ray release is also available.

Audio Track: Dolby Digital 5.1. How does it sound? I didn’t detect any issues with this track. It does the job.

Extras:
* Deleted scenes from episodes 1, 2, 4, 6, 7, 8, 12, 14, 16, 18, 20, 21 and 22.
* An enthusiastic commentary on episode 1 by Julie Plec and Chris Grismer. The duo talk about special f/x, sets, the backdoor pilot, New Orleans, the score, etc.
* “The Originals: Origins”- A featurette about the creation of this spin-off show.
* “The Original Vampires: A Bite-Sized Backstory”- An recap of the Mikaelson family’s past.
* “The Originals: Re-Mixing History”-A featurette in which the writers blab about various aspects of the show.
* “The Originals Panel At PaleyFest 2014”- A half hour Q&A panel hosted by Jaritt Wieselman with Michael Carducci, Charles Michael Davis, Leah Pipes, Phoebe Tonkin, Daniel Gillies, Joseph Morgan, Claire Holt, Danielle Campbell, and Julie Plec.
* “2013 Comic-Con Panel”- This half hour panel (hosted by TV Guide President Deborah Birnbaum) is another Q&A with Julie Plec, Joseph Morgan, Claire Holt, Daniel Gillies, Charles Michael Davis, and Phoebe Tonkin.

Overall Thoughts: “The Originals” is not my cup of tea, but fans of “The Vampire Diaries” will no doubt want to check it out. If you are left wanting want more of “The Originals,” season 2 is set to debut on October 6, 2014.

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September 4, 2014 - Posted by | DVD review | , , , , ,

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