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 Perfect for newbies, nerds, or completists.

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xinyuntian01
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PostSubject: Perfect for newbies, nerds, or completists.    Mon Jul 18, 2011 2:57 am

There are several points on which to review a collection this large. There is the content of the discs, the packaging, and the price. Fortunately, this collection deserves high marks on all those points.First of all, if you are already a Buffy fan, you probably already have favorite seasons and have bought them as individual sets. For those of us who are a bit less rabid and have waited to buy, this is a perfect way to get all the episodes at a bargain price. And while some seasons and episodes are better than others, there are no complete turkeys in the seven seasons of the Buffy series. Each stands well on its own with different highlights and story types. The writing on Buffy [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] will make anyone who gives the show a chance into a fan. The villains may look cheesy but you'll forget about that once you're engaged by the dialog and character development.The packaging for these discs is well-designed and compact. The height of the package is the same as a standard DVD case with the discs stacked on top of each other in 7 separate holders. The only problem is that the clear tape holding the plastic disc holders together in each cardboard sleeve for each season isn't very strong and the holders can become detached. The only factor which I was disappointed in was the extras and commentary. There is commentary on only select episodes and a lot of the extras repeat the content of other extras. While I'm sure that Joss Whedon shot the interviews and did the commentary years apart, those who buy this set may hear them all at the same time so the repetition makes some of the extras appear like thoughtless filler. The commentary by other writers is often very tedious and banal. Many of them seem unclear on the concept of what commentary is for. They offer such insights as how "pretty" actors look and comment casually on the storylines refusing [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] to give insightful information about the background or making of the show for fear of "spoiling" viewers' experience. Someone should have filled them in on the fact that no one buys a season of any series on DVD without already having seen it all 98% of the time and no one ever listens to commentary before watching the episodes.Considering the low price of this [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] set (and the fact that the series itself is the main reason for buying the set, not the extras or packaging), the weak points are of little consequence when deciding whether or not to purchase this item.
There are several points on which to review a collection this large. There is the content of the discs, the packaging, and the price. Fortunately, this collection deserves high marks on all those points.First of all, if you are already a Buffy fan, you probably [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] already have favorite seasons and have bought them as individual sets. For those of us who are a bit less rabid and have waited to buy, this is a perfect way [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] to get all the episodes at a bargain price. And while some seasons and episodes are better than others, there are no complete turkeys in the seven seasons of the Buffy series. Each stands well on its own with different highlights and story types. The writing on Buffy will make anyone who gives the show a chance into a fan. The villains may look cheesy but you'll forget about that once you're engaged by the dialog and character development.The packaging for these discs is well-designed and compact. The height of the package is the same as a standard DVD case with the discs stacked on top of each other in 7 separate holders. The only problem is that the clear tape holding the plastic disc holders together in each cardboard sleeve for each season isn't very strong and the holders can become detached. The only factor which I was disappointed in was the extras and commentary. There is commentary on only select episodes and a lot of the extras repeat the content of other extras. While I'm sure that Joss Whedon shot the interviews and did the commentary years apart, those who buy this set may hear them all at the same time so the repetition makes some of the extras appear like thoughtless filler. The commentary by other writers is often very tedious and banal. Many of them seem unclear on the concept of what commentary is for. They offer such insights as how "pretty" actors look and comment casually on the storylines refusing to give insightful information about the background or making of the show for fear of "spoiling" viewers' experience. Someone should have filled them in on the fact that no one buys a season of any series on DVD without already having [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] seen it all 98% of the time and no one ever listens to commentary before watching the episodes.Considering the low price of this set (and the fact that the series itself is the main reason for buying the set, not the extras or packaging), the weak points are of little consequence when deciding whether or not to purchase this item.
Before anything else: Some of the reviews in here contain nasty spoilers, which you will want to steer away from if you're a newcomer to the series. This review is SPOILER-FREE. I have been following the series from Day One and am today as convinced of its absolutely unique and highly sophisticated character as I was then. Sure, the subject matter is demons, vampires and other grizzlies, but as with other [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] fantasy, horror, and sci fi, that's not really the point. You are looking at very well developed characters, gripping and often surprising storylines, very witty dialogue from the Joss Whedon School of Fun )him being the series creator) and a nice new look for teenage horror in general.Having said that, there is a learning curve in making this series, and it seems the producers found their pace only after the first season. So don't go judging by Season One, which is still flawed in a number of ways, although still enjoyable.There are a number of reviews looking at supposed [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] flaws in the entire series. Perhaps a counter-argument is called for. First of all, it is quite important to remember this is a FICTIONAL series and as such does not make any claim to historical or mytholigical accuracy. Of course it is nice, particularly for enthusiasts of these subjects, to see things accurately reflected, which is the case in Buffy more often than not. However, if it helps a plot, I'm all for creativity. We've seen the same old thing way too many times, and this show doesn't make that mistake once.Also: Yes, there is some (VERY NON-EXPLICIT) sexual motives in this series. Hey, it's vampires - WHAT DID YOU EXPECT? It sure wasn't Joss Whedon who attached the erotic part to the whole occult thing... In this series, therefore, is the occasional snuggle, the occasional sexual joke, and every once in a while someone smokes a cigarette. Of course, people object to that much rather than the much more frequent decapitation of things and the general pummeling-happiness of the main character. This is a show about the occult. It sure is not for young children, and mine won't say until the prescribed age of fiteen. But it is a show that tries to show people as they are, and people, unfortunately, do smoke sometimes, do steal sometimes, do have sex sometimes. Get over it. TV is not raising your children. You are.The seasons do vary in focus, i.e. some seasons will appeal more to one kind of viewer, others to another. Thus (discounting Season One, which is still an exercise in self-discovery for the series), Season Two has all the drama and heartache the avid viewer could hope for, plus a hefty helping of nasties and "cool humour" as opposed to some of the "silly humour" from Season Six. Season Three follows on from that quite neatly, but some growing up occurs and themes evolve from the more teenager-oriented materials previously handled. Season Four is the excursion into that old conspiracy territory that I suppose X-Philes in particular will enjoy. Season Five (admittedly in my opinion the weakest of the seven after the first) nonetheless brings some memorable moments and develops the helplessness and angsty feeling that's begun to creep in. Season Six, as mentioned above, lightens the mood for a while, but again, some very nicely dark stuff in there, that sets the tone for the big blow-out Finale of Season Seven.You may easily assume this show is for sci-fi nerds and pass. You would be wrong. I have stopped counting the amount of people who I made to watch the show for a few episodes and who ended up buying the whole series. You may think such "trash" can offer you nothing. Believe me, you would miss out. You will not regret buying this. You will get hooked...
Before anything else: Some of the reviews in here contain nasty spoilers, which you will want to steer away from if you're a newcomer to the series. This review is SPOILER-FREE. I have been following the series from Day One and am today as convinced of its absolutely unique and highly sophisticated character as I was then. Sure, the subject matter [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] is demons, vampires and other grizzlies, but as with other fantasy, horror, and sci fi, that's not really the point. You are looking at very well developed characters, gripping and often surprising storylines, very witty dialogue from the Joss Whedon School of Fun )him being the series creator) and a nice new look for teenage horror in general.Having said that, there is a learning curve in making this series, and it seems the producers found their pace only after the first season. So don't go judging by Season One, [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] which is still flawed in a number of ways, although still enjoyable.There are a number of reviews looking at supposed flaws in the entire series. Perhaps a counter-argument is called for. First of all, it is quite important to remember this is a FICTIONAL series and as such does not make any claim to historical or mytholigical accuracy. Of course it is nice, particularly for enthusiasts of these subjects, to see things accurately reflected, which is the case in Buffy more often than not. However, if it helps a plot, I'm all for creativity. We've seen the same old thing way too many times, and this show doesn't make that mistake once.Also: Yes, there is some (VERY NON-EXPLICIT) sexual motives in this series. Hey, it's vampires - WHAT DID YOU EXPECT? It sure wasn't Joss Whedon who attached the erotic part to the whole occult thing... In this series, therefore, is the occasional snuggle, the occasional sexual [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] joke, and every once in a while someone smokes a cigarette. Of course, people object [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] to that much rather than the much more frequent decapitation of things and the general pummeling-happiness of the main character. This is a show about the occult. It sure is not for young children, [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] and mine won't say until the prescribed age of fiteen. But it is a show that tries to show people as they are, and people, unfortunately, do smoke sometimes, do steal sometimes, do have sex sometimes. Get over it. TV is not raising your children. You are.The seasons do vary in focus, i.e. some seasons will appeal more to one kind of viewer, others to another. Thus (discounting Season One, which is still an exercise in self-discovery for the series), Season Two has all the drama and heartache the avid viewer could hope for, plus a hefty helping of nasties and "cool humour" as opposed to some of the "silly humour" from Season Six. Season Three follows on from that quite neatly, but some growing up occurs and themes evolve from the more teenager-oriented materials previously handled. Season Four is the excursion into that old conspiracy territory that [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] I suppose X-Philes in particular will enjoy. Season Five (admittedly in my opinion the weakest of the seven after the first) nonetheless brings some memorable moments and develops the helplessness and angsty feeling that's begun to creep in. Season Six, as mentioned above, lightens the mood for a while, but again, some very nicely dark stuff in there, that sets the tone for the big blow-out Finale of Season Seven.You may easily assume this show is for sci-fi nerds and pass. You would be wrong. I have stopped counting the amount of people who I made to watch the show for a few episodes and who ended up buying the whole series. You may think such "trash" can offer you nothing. Believe me, you would miss out. You will not regret buying this. You will get hooked...
My husband bought this for me for Christmas because it was cheaper than buying the rest of the individual Seasons. The packaging is very [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] cool looking, but the cases are stacked on top of each other making it harder to get to the [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] ones on the bottom. There is one book with all the episodes listed instead of seven different ones. Other than the disc of extras that is in here (and not in the indivdual seasons) and the packaging, I haven't noticed anything special. If you already own all seven seasons I personally don't see a reason in spending the extra money just for a fancy box that isn't really user friendly. If you don't own any and are looking to own all the seasons this is a good deal. I love the show and whould have given it five stars if the box wasn't set up the way it is.
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