Friday, August 15, 2014

The Blacklist - The Complete First Season

When the FBI's most wanted turns himself over to authorities and agrees to help them catch infamous villains (many of whom the government isn't even aware of) the life of Agent Elizabeth Keen (Megan Boone) changes in a flash as she finds herself in a world of secrets, half-truths, and lies concerning all aspects of Raymond Reddington (James Spader) and why the master criminal chose her as his liason to the FBI.

The set collects all 22 episodes of the show's First Season in which Reddington leads the team (Harry Lennix, Diego Klattenhoff, Parminder Nagra, Hisham Tawfiq) to take down a member of The Blacklist every week while Lizzie deals with ugly truths in her own life which Reddington's prescence brings to light - including the truth of her husband Tom (Ryan Eggold). The uneven First Season is a bit too secretive for its own good (much like Red), but does produces some strong episodes.

Highlights from the season include the mid-season two-parter featuring the seizure of the FBI base and kidnapping of Reddington by longtime enemy Anslo Garrick (Ritchie Coster), preventing the outbreak of a deadly pathogen, a search for an assassin so good his murders are always taken as accidents, tracking down a chemical expert with a talent for destroying all traces of his victims, taking down an expert who specializes in making people disappear, stopping a member of The Blacklist from targeting agents of the FBI, taking down a man with the talent for securing his clients' future through murder and disinformation, and the series finale offering audiences the first look at the mysterious Berlin.

Available on DVD and Blu-ray, the five-disc collection includes short behind-the-scenes featurettes on the making of the series, and audio commentaries from Jon Bokenkamp, John Eisendrath, and Joe Carnahan for select episodes. The Blu-ray set also includes dossiers on the show's major characters and a featurette on the making of the Pilot.

[Sony Pictures Home Entertainment, Blu-ray $75.99 / DVD $69.99]

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