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Ray Donovan Season 5 DVD Review


The fifth season of “Ray Donovan” is what it is.

The titular Hollywood fixer for a powerful law firm returns for a 12 episode fifth season. In this season, viewers can expect Ray to deal with anger management issues, Terry’s wedding, Conor attending military school, flashbacks, Ray’s fixer cases, Bunchy’s jobs and family, Mickey possibly being up to his old violent ways, a movie star (Natalie) in trouble, Mickey and Daryll working on a movie together, Abby’s cancer, Bridget ending up in jail, a studio head named Samantha Winslow, and more. Of course, there’s also plenty of family drama involving Abby (Ray’s wife), Mickey (Ray’s dad), Bunchy and Terry (Ray’s brothers), Daryll (Ray’s half brother), Conor (Ray’s son), and Bridget (Ray’s daughter).

When I watched some of season 1 back when the show debuted, I wondered why Showtime’s “Ray Donovan” developed a loyal fanbase. Now, with the show in its fifth season, I’m still pondering the same question. I suppose people might be drawn to the crime elements and “The Sopranos” and “The Fighter” wannabe dysfunctional family drama, but other than that, I don’t personally see what all the fuss is about. The drama comes across as trashy, over-the-top, and overly macho, the subplots are cluttered, the characters aren’t all that interesting aside from Ray himself, the time jumps and drawn out flashbacks are poorly integrated, and the writing frequently delves into a series of clichés.

The lone highlight of the series is Live Schreiber as Ray Donovan. He seems to be the only one really trying here. You could make a case for Jon Voight as well but I’ve seen him give far better performances. At any rate, it is good to see an underrated actor like Schreiber getting his due here, but he deserves a better starring role than this.


Presentation: Widescreen. How does it look? The DVD offers up a crisp standard definition transfer of the season. Note: There is not a Blu-ray edition available for this season.

Audio Track: Dolby Digital 5.1. How does it sound? This is a quality 5.1 track.

Extras: A featurette on the adorable dog titled “Dog The Dog,” the 3 part “On Death And Dying” which tackles major season 5 events, character centric featurettes titled “Nothing Goes Right For Bunchy” and “Terry Donovan And Parkinson’s,” and commentary on episode 8 by Paula Malcomson and David Hollander which is a bit interesting as it’s Paula’s first time seeing the emotional episode.

February 28, 2018 - Posted by | DVD review | , , ,

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