Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Blade: The Series DVD

DVD Review by Kam Williams

Headline: Complete Sci-Fi Series Starring Sticky Fingaz Available on DVD

After enjoy a theatrical run as a trilogy featuring Wesley Snipes, the Blade franchise was brought to television with rapper-turned-actor Sticky Fingaz entrusted with the title role. This 4-disc DVD is comprised of the pilot plus 12 additional episodes of the short-lived, Spike-TV series which was canceled after a dozen episodes, plus unrated and never before seen footage originally deemed too graphic to air.
The initial installment introduces half-breed Blade, a people-friendly vampire hunter who has dedicated his life to wiping that blood-sucking species off the planet and thereby save humanity. The surprisingly gruesome story is set in present-day Detroit where the motorcycle-riding avenger teams up with Krista (Jill Wagner), an Iraq War veteran whose twin brother (David Kopp) was murdered by the House of Chthon, an evil sect of vampires led by Marcus Van Sciver (Neil Jackson), a diabolical overlord bent on world domination.
When we first meet Krista, she doesn’t know from vampires, since her interest is initially just in cracking what she thinks is an ordinary case of homicide. But to her credit, she remains game even after learning about the supernatural powers of her adversaries, though she is obviously fortunate to be assisted in her endeavor by Blade, given his extensive knowledge about the use of garlic, silver and sunlight in combating the rabid breed of predators.
Though the IRS-entangled Snipes still remains too associated with the role to be forgotten, Sticky certainly held his own over the course of the year he was entrusted with the franchise, and he generates enough chemistry with his comely co-star to hold one’s interest for the duration. Most importantly, the episodes also have compelling plotlines and sufficient gore to satiate the bloodlust of fans of the genre. For, when all is said and done, don’t gruesome displays of vivisection explain the appeal of this sort of horror flick?

Very good (3 stars)
Running time: 558 minutes
Studio: New Line Home Entertainment
DVD Extras: Audio commentary by director Peter O’Fallon, audio commentary by scriptwriters David Goyer and Geoff Johns, and a documentary entitled “Turning Blade.”

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

This series was doomed because it was on Spike TV and it started off way too slow with weak writing, poorly executed fight scenes, and weak acting of some of the main cast. Most of the problems were sorted out about halfway through the series but it was too late for the people who gave up on it near the beginning. It looks like most of the actors were cast just before the pilot was shot and they did not have enough experience to make the weak scripts believiable to start. What I find most disturbing is that there should have been a lot more prep time for fight training between the pilot and the rest of the series. But the fight sequences were no better in the first few episodes than they were in the pilot.

The plot was OK, but it was weakened due to some poorly written and sometimes acted first few shows. Either the actors should have been given more fight training and/or more experienced actors should have been cast. The lead female looks like she was cast exclusively for eye-candy until the later episodes when finally it seemed like she learned how to show emotion while acting. Too many negatives doomed this series even though it finally started getting acceptable stories, fight sequences, and acting near the end. Might have been a much better series if it went to a second season, but Spike TV couldn't afford to wait another year after ratings dived after the pilot movie.