Sunday, September 27, 2009

Jay's Review: Primeval Vol. 2

Another review by the Big Lug for! If you like dinosaurs, or fun serial Sci-Fi, check out Primeval Vol. 2.

Primeval: Volume 2

Official Synopsis:

Evolutionary zoologist Nick Cutter (Douglas Henshall) recruits Egyptologist Sarah Page (Laila Rouass) to the team, hoping her research can shed some light on the mysterious time anomalies that continue to deposit dangerous dinosaurs in modern England. The third season of the popular sci-fi series finds the group grappling with a crocodilian from the Ecocene period, a deceptively cute diictodon and a ravenous giganotosaurus.

Our Take:

rimeval Vol. 2 is actually season three (Vol. 1 features the first two runs of the show) but you can come in cold without a lot of learning curve. Weird "anomalies" -portals in time- keep opening up all over England, letting in dinosaurs, sea monsters, and insects from the past and future; and we've only one line of defense in a team of scientists trying to stay one step ahead to keep everyone safe.

Our stalwart heroes work for an all purpose sci-fi government team (this is essentially Torchwood without the sex) that is more British bureaucracy than gung-ho monster fighters and they would have been far better served to just do in the incredibly tedious Helen back in the first season, but every week they keep England safe from some very effective sci-fi (Medieval knights, fungus monsters, and clones, oh my!) and it all closes on a heck of a cliffhanger...

It's a real shame that Primeval has been cancelled because it is a pretty ripping weekly series. Watched in one dense serving the juvenilia and plot holes tend to show, but if you pick this box up and parse out the episodes one or two at a time you're in for a real treat. The actors are charming (the cast rotates a few characters in and out through the course of this series) and the CGI is only occasionally wonky, so sit back and relax. You'll feel like a kid watching a Saturday sci-fi serial, enjoying the whiz-bang ride.

Special Features:

-Commentary on episodes 3, 5, and 10
-"Cutter's Odyssey" -Actor Douglas Henshall discusses his character's journey through the course of the series in a 19 minute featurette.
-"Genesis of a Creature" - a 19 minute doc featuring one 16 year old Carim Nahaboo, the winner of Primeval's contest to design a creature for the show (the darn cool looking "Megaoptra") . We join him through the special effects process in both pre- and post-production on the episode.


Primeval got convoluted kind of quickly, but works well as a "Monster of the Week" show that can be watched by adolescents on up, enjoyed, then moved on from. We all like dinosaurs, maybe they alone make it worth a watch?

Overall Picture:

Show: B-
Extra Features: B-

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