I have to tell you, I just got the US boxset of Doctor Who SEASON III (the one starring Freema Agyeman as Martha Jones), my favorite season of the new series, and the only one I think enough of to own in its entirety (Don’t get me wrong there are weak moments in this season, and bits from other seasons I like and think are great, it’s just as a whole I feel this season works the best), and while very happy with Season III’s episodes I’m not as happy with the special features, particularly the commentaries.
The BBC season DVDs are extraordinarily expensive, retailing at $80 per season in the US for only 13 episodes, calling that high-way robbery prices wouldn’t be too far off. BBCs pricing is rubbish.
And even though most of us can get it for less than retail, the fact remains if you’re going to justify that exorbitant retail price (you can get multiple seasons of most shows for that price or less) you need to offer more.
Namely you need to offer full cast DVD commentaries. This is David Tennant and Freema Agyeman’s journey, and people who love this season are buying to hear these great actors discuss and reminisce over that journey, so common sense would tell you to at the very least, have these two actors in the commentaries.
I’m always amazed how uncommon, common sense is.
Because these two show up together on the US release in exactly 0 episode commentaries. ZERO!
WTF is that?!!!
We do get commentaries, by various producers, and editors, and writers, but really the people you want to hear from most on these commentaries are absent, and it is a huge, effing glaring omission.
In addition to offering no Tenant/Agyeman commentaries, the special features are very light. Why just snippets of Doctor Who Confidential? Why not full episodes??
Christ, BBC you’re charging an arm and a leg for these boxsets, you can afford not to be cheap bastards.
So I’m very glad, I didn’t pay full price for this boxset, but even still… lacking decent cast commentaries I still feel more than a bit cheated. So I’d recommend (if you have a multi-zome player) avoid the BBC America DVD release and purchasing the UK version instead. At least you get (according to various sites) one Tenant, Agyeman, and Barrow commentary on the UK set, and it’s currently priced at 1/3rd the price of the US boxset. So even when you factor in shipping, it still screams deal to me. Man, US/Region 1 viewers are getting screwed. BBC America is rubbish!
So I guess that single episode 13 commentary (with all three stars) will have to do me until BBC grows some brains and decide to release proper full cast commentaries for this season.
So in closing, just say no to BBC America and their rubbish overpricing and heavy editing of episodes (and according to some, poor mastering of US/Region 1/A Blurays, read this). You’d be better off waiting for the UK DVD releases.
Here endeth my ranting for today.