Apr 16, 2009
Upcoming Spy DVDs: Callan And Burn Notice
TVShowsOnDVD has the cover art for Acorn Media's upcoming Callan: Set 1 DVD. As exclusively reported here all the way back in December, this release is not the black and white first season (some of whose episodes are lost), but actually the third season of the show, the first to be filmed in color. Acorn are following the same model as Umbrella did with Callan in Australia (or as A&E did with The Avengers here in America) and starting with the color seasons. Depending on sales, hopefully they will eventually go back and pick up the surviving black and white episodes, which still have not been relased officially in any country. I like the cover art. It's certainly not as cool as the 70s film poster for Callan, but it's eyecatching and a definite improvement on the drab Australian artwork! The third season is a sort of odd place to begin Callan, because the premiere relies heavily on what's come before. (The second season had ended on a big cliffhanger.) And it's not a very good episode, especially if you haven't seen the previous season! Hopefully it won't put consumers off of the Edward Woodward classic, though.
Turning to a contemporary series that owes a lot to another Edward Woodward spy show, Fox has issued a press release confirming the previously rumored June 16 release date for the second season of Burn Notice on DVD and Blu-Ray–and providing an overview of the special features. They're still plentiful, but despite my prediction to the contrary they don't sound quite as good as those on the first season. I was a big fan of the highly entertaining "select scene commentaries" on that set by series creator Matt Nix and his star trio of Jeffrey Donovan, Gabrielle Anwar and champion DVD commentator Bruce Campbell. This time, the commentaries appear to be full episode commentaries, but there are only a few of them, and not with the stars together. Nix still appears on all three tracks, but he's accompanied by guest stars like Method Man and Tim Matheson. Campbell makes one appearance, and Donovan and Anwar none. So that's too bad. On the plus side, we still get plenty of deleted scenes, plus a featurette on Nix (who I'm eager to learn more about), another gag reel and an Easter Egg called "Boom Notice." (Possibly a compilation video of all the show's explosions? That would be in keeping with some of the lesser Season 1 featurettes.) Extras aside, however, Burn Notice just keeps getting better and better in its second season, and this is a must-see DVD for every spy fan.