The Walking Dead: The Complete Second Season (Blu-ray) Official AVSForum Review - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 20 Old 08-28-2012, 05:35 PM - Thread Starter
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The Review at a Glance: (max score: 5 )

Film: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373637

Extras: attachment.php?attachmentid=109944&d=1210373647

Audio/Video total rating:

( Max score: 100 )
87





Studio and Year: AMC - 2011/ 2012
MPAA Rating: NR
Feature running time: 578 Minutes
Genre: Horror/Drama/TV

Disc Format: BD-50 (4 Disc Set)
Encoding: AVC (MPEG-4)
Video Aspect: 1.78:1
Resolution: 1080p/24


Audio Format(s): English Dolby TrueHD 7.1, French Dolby Surround 2.0
Subtitles: English SDH
Starring: Andrew Lincoln, Sarah Wayne Callies, Steven Yeun, Chandler Riggs, Jon Bernthal, Laurie Holden, Jeffrey DeMunn
Directed by: Ernest R. Dickerson, Guy Ferland, Bill Gierhart, Greg Nicotero
Music by: Bear McCreary
Written by: Charlie Adlard, Frank Darabont, Robert Kirkman, Tony Moore
Region Code: A

Blu-ray Disc release Date: August 28, 2012







"The world we know is gone, but keeping our humanity? That's a choice."


Film Synopsis:

When the world is ravaged by a zombie apocalypse, police officer Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln) and a small group of others struggle to stay alive as 'the dead' stalk them at every turn. Can Rick and the others hold onto their humanity as they fight to live in this terrifying new world? And, amidst dire conditions and personal rivalries, will they ultimately survive one another? Based on Robert Kirkman's hugely successful and popular comic book series, AMC's original series "The Walking Dead" is an epic, edge-of-your-seat drama where personal struggles are magnified against a backdrop of moment-to-moment crisis. A survivalist story at its core, the series explores how the living are changed by the overwhelming realization that those who survive can be far more dangerous than the mindless walkers roaming the earth. They themselves have become the walking dead...



My Take:

I was a big fan of AMC's walking dead, which I reviewed (here) last year, and I was eagerly anticipating season 2. When the news came out the the shows creator, Frank Darabont (Shawshank Redemption, The Mist) was leaving before season 2 began filming, I was worried. My concern was his amazing grasp of the human condition, the element that made The Walking Dead such a success would be lost, or that it could easily just become a apocalyptic soap opera with zombies. Thankfully The Walking Dead Season 2 did not disappoint. I was sucked in from frame one and watched the season through in 2 days. I was hooked with its well fleshed out characters, convincing story-arch and awesome effects courtesy of effects guru Gregory Nicotero's KNB EFX group.

Season 2 finds our group lost and hopeless after finding out there is no cure to the zombie disease after their visit to the Center for Disease Control (also known as the CDC) in Atlanta. They are roaming, looking for a place to be, belong and to find a reason to carry on. Led by Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln), the group end up at a secluded farm where they not only need to fight the zombies but they find the toughest struggle is fighting themselves.

What got me was Rick Grimes' storyline in this season. Stripped down to basics it was about Rick finding himself after quietly succumbing to doubt. He goes from strong to passive and back, finally securing his role and becoming the leader he was supposed to be. I read some complaints about the lack of Zombie in this season and I found that to be ludicrous. There were Zombies-a-plenty, and they were all awesome. The effects were great, and the location of the secluded farm gave the series a chance to get a bit deeper into the characters heads without an over-kill of zombies, which I found to be much more effective. If you have yet to see season 2 (or season 1 for that matter) it's time to get watching as this Blu-ray set is great.


Parental Guide:

Violence and language




AUDIO/VIDEO - By The Numbers:
REFERENCE = 92-100 / EXCELLENT = 83-91 / GOOD = 74-82 / AVERAGE = 65-73 / BELOW AVERAGE = under 65

**My audio/video ratings are based upon a comparative made against other high definition media/blu-ray disc.**


(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)

Audio: 90


  • Dynamics: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373692

  • Low frequency extension: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373692

  • Surround Sound presentation: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373692

  • Clarity/Detail: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373692

  • Dialogue Reproduction: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373692



Video: 84

(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)


  • Resolution/Clarity: attachment.php?attachmentid=109946&d=1210373692

  • Black level/Shadow detail: attachment.php?attachmentid=109946&d=1210373692

  • Color reproduction: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373692

  • Fleshtones: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373692

  • Compression: attachment.php?attachmentid=109946&d=1210373692

The Walking Dead: Season 2 comes to Blu-ray disc from Anchor Bay/Starz featuring 1080p AVC encoded video that has an average bitrate of 24.2 mbps Dolby TrueHD MA 7.1 lossless surround sound that has a average bitrate of 3.3 mbps.


There is very little, if any deviation in the aesthetic of the show, the sound design as well as the quality of the transfer Anchor Bay delivers on Blu-ray. My Thoughts are the same as the the Season 1 release which I am quoting below.

"Anchor Bay delivers a faithful transfer of AMC's 'The Walking Dead'. You better love film grain as this was shot on 16mm film stock, and the grain is pretty heavy here...you can almost sink your teeth into it. Grain can be a double edged sword, sometimes it can get overbearing but sometimes it is beautiful, adding to the look and feel of a film. Here it added to the gritty despair and depression of the situation. It was not the most detailed or crisp HD broadcast I have seen, but was passable. This translates directly to its Blu-ray release, showing that Anchor Bay was true to the source. Colors seem spot on from what I have on MY DVR, with flesh-tones taking on a natural but slightly pale tone. Black levels sure do shine as do the shadow details. There really is nothing to fault here, as it looks as it should and was filmed to look. The audio track was a step above, with a rich and dynamic sound-scape, having no issues with dialogue and a very nice surround presentation. Most impressive was the palpable concussion of gunshots and other dynamic sound effects as well as LFE that dug room shaking deep, adding another level to this superb lossless Dolby TrueHD."

Bonus Features:


  • Audio Commentary on Episodes 1,7,8,11 & 13

  • (HD) 11 Featurettes

  • (HD) 6 Webisodes

  • (HD) Deleted Scenes




Final Thoughts:

The Walking Dead: Season 2 is a must see, well a must see once you see Season 1! I was skeptical when the show lost Frank Darabont, however, things did not miss a beat as the scares, isolation and character development are all still here. Anchor Bay delivers a great release, with plenty of brains...I mean extras to sink your teeth into. This is highly recommended!


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Lee Weber
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post #2 of 20 Old 08-28-2012, 07:14 PM
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Greetings,

Nice review Lee.. smile.gif


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post #3 of 20 Old 08-28-2012, 08:00 PM
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I love this drama! Full of scares and despair.
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post #4 of 20 Old 08-29-2012, 11:39 AM
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I picked up the collector's set with the Zombie head case at Bestbuy yesterday. It was 59.99, but I got a free 10.00 gift card which makes the actual price 49.99. Not a bad deal at all. My grandkids took turns sticking the screwdriver into the zombie's eye. eek.gif
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post #5 of 20 Old 08-29-2012, 02:55 PM
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I just started watching this, today. By God, this is a GRAIN MONSTER!

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post #6 of 20 Old 08-29-2012, 04:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nikerret View Post

I just started watching this, today. By God, this is a GRAIN MONSTER!

Greetings,

Yup, the show is shot using grainy film stock and looks the same way when broadcast...


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post #7 of 20 Old 08-29-2012, 04:33 PM
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best show on tv
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post #8 of 20 Old 08-29-2012, 04:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ralph Potts View Post

Greetings,
Yup, the show is shot using grainy film stock and looks the same way when broadcast...
Regards,

I'll add here that the one downside to grain is that some cable/satellite compressions for re-transmission make this noise much worse... but my experience with Season 1 on Blu-ray was that it looked really clean w/ film grain as it was supposed to look. I picked up season 2 this week, and expect more of the same.

I know some people hate grain, but some other people confuse film grain with poor transfers... I think film grain really adds to a show like this where it reminds you the world they are in is kind of gritty.

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post #9 of 20 Old 08-29-2012, 05:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HDMe2 View Post

I'll add here that the one downside to grain is that some cable/satellite compressions for re-transmission make this noise much worse... but my experience with Season 1 on Blu-ray was that it looked really clean w/ film grain as it was supposed to look. I picked up season 2 this week, and expect more of the same.
I know some people hate grain, but some other people confuse film grain with poor transfers... I think film grain really adds to a show like this where it reminds you the world they are in is kind of gritty.

Greetings,

I have no problem with film grain and agree that there are times where it's application works well.

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post #10 of 20 Old 08-30-2012, 06:35 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HDMe2 View Post

I'll add here that the one downside to grain is that some cable/satellite compressions for re-transmission make this noise much worse... but my experience with Season 1 on Blu-ray was that it looked really clean w/ film grain as it was supposed to look. I picked up season 2 this week, and expect more of the same.
I know some people hate grain, but some other people confuse film grain with poor transfers... I think film grain really adds to a show like this where it reminds you the world they are in is kind of gritty.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ralph Potts View Post

Greetings,
I have no problem with film grain and agree that there are times where it's application works well.
Regards,

I find that when I can see the grain, that usually coincides with great rendering of fine details. When it is digitally manipulated away is when some of the finer details are as well.
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post #11 of 20 Old 08-30-2012, 04:02 PM
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I, too, (greatly) prefer less (or no) grain, but I can appreciate the ability for the creators to have an accurate reproduction of their intent.

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post #12 of 20 Old 08-30-2012, 07:51 PM
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already watched season2 atleast 3 times on my dvr. can't wait to get the blu ray,so i wont have to skip through the commercials
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post #13 of 20 Old 08-31-2012, 06:08 AM
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Love this show and it's one of the first in a while to capture the attention of not only myself but also my wife. The character interaction and story is top notch and keeps you interested. Just when you are getting caught up in the thoughts and feelings of a particular character, you let your guard down and that's when the zombies come along and crank up the adrenaline. I think they have done a great job of balancing the zombie screen time with everything else that goes on. I find it much more believable this way. Like many law enforcement persons describe their work, "hours of countless boredom, punctuated by a few moments of shear terror". The Walking Dead is far from boring even in it's more docile moments and I love everything about this show. It's a very close tie between this and "Breaking Bad" for my favorite.
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post #14 of 20 Old 08-31-2012, 09:58 AM
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This is a fantastic show! It sagged a bit mid-season 2, but it ended with a bang. I am looking forward to Season 3!

I agree regarding the grain and broadcast television; it looks far worse than it does on the Blue-Ray (applies to season 1 and 2).

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post #15 of 20 Old 09-01-2012, 11:18 AM
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Quote:
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Like many law enforcement persons describe their work, "hours of countless boredom, punctuated by a few moments of shear terror".

I like to say, "90% boredon, 7% paperwork, 2% fun, and 1% sheer terror." I'm the biggest fan of the 1%.

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post #16 of 20 Old 10-22-2013, 07:10 PM
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This review is over a year old already, but I've just gotten around to seeing all of season 1 and am now about mid-way through season 2, and must agree that this really is a great TV show. While I'm not usually a big fan of zombie movies, this TV series is better than any zombie movie that I've ever seen. Highly recommended!

Thanks for the review, Lee! cool.gif
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post #17 of 20 Old 10-23-2013, 07:47 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ozar View Post

This review is over a year old already, but I've just gotten around to seeing all of season 1 and am now about mid-way through season 2, and must agree that this really is a great TV show. While I'm not usually a big fan of zombie movies, this TV series is better than any zombie movie that I've ever seen. Highly recommended!

Thanks for the review, Lee! cool.gif

Greetings,

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post #18 of 20 Old 10-24-2013, 08:29 AM
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Hello, Lee

Just a quick question if I may ask it here... do TV series usually only get reviews for one or two seasons, or will you be reviewing seasons 3 and 4 as well?

Thank you again for the reviews on the first two seasons.

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post #19 of 20 Old 10-28-2013, 09:21 PM - Thread Starter
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cool.gif
Quote:
Originally Posted by ozar View Post

Hello, Lee

Just a quick question if I may ask it here... do TV series usually only get reviews for one or two seasons, or will you be reviewing seasons 3 and 4 as well?

Thank you again for the reviews on the first two seasons.

Here is the link to season 3.

http://www.avsforum.com/t/1488262/the-walking-dead-the-complete-third-season-blu-ray-official-avsforum-review/0_40

Enjoy!!!
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post #20 of 20 Old 10-29-2013, 05:28 AM
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Thanks for the link, Lee! cool.gif

I checked the reviews database index and didn't see it listed so figured it had not been reviewed.

Will go check it out now...

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