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Sons of Anarchy: Season Four Blu-ray Review

  • Aspect Ratio: 1:78:1
  • Video Codec: AVC/MPEG-4
  • Resolution: 1080p/24 (23.976Hz)
  • Audio Codec: English DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1
  • Subtitles: English SDH, French, Spanish
  • Subtitles Color: White
  • Region: A (Region-Locked)
  • Rating: Not Rated
  • Run Time: 656 Mins.
  • Discs: 3 (3 x Blu-ray)
  • Studio: 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment
  • Blu-ray Release Date: August 28th, 2012
  • List Price: $69.99

Overall
[Rating:3.5/5]
The Series
[Rating:4.5/5]
Video Quality
[Rating:4/5]
Audio Quality
[Rating:4/5]
Supplemental Materials
[Rating:2.5/5]

Click thumbnails for high-resolution 1920X1080p screen captures

(All TheaterByte screen captures are lightly compressed with lossy JPEG at 100% quality setting and are meant as a general representation of the content. They do not fully reveal the capabilities of the Blu-ray format)

The Series

[Rating:4.5/5]

In this fourth season of Sons of Anarchy, we find all the members of the Sons of Anarchy fresh out of jail, which they entered at the end of the Third Season. Hoping to just start up where they left off with their illicit activities, SAMCRO will be surprised to find out that a new alliance and head of the Sheriff’s department is determined to bring the Sons down, once and for all. Add in the turmoil and struggles Jax (Charlie Hunnam) faces over the legacy of his father, as well as internal squabbles in the clubhouse, and you have the best season of Sons of Anarchy yet!

So, what makes this fourth Season of Sons of Anarchy so good? It’s not the acting, or the direction, or the dialogue. No, it’s more the story and how Series Creator Kurt Sutter has developed these characters into the kind of characters we feel for, we cry for, we connect with, not just the kind of characters who may die and we just shrug our shoulders not minding a bit.

Sutter has created the kind of series that has the depth necessary to keep us watching from episode to episode. As we learn more and more about Jax and his father, particularly in this season, we side with Jax (well, at least I did) and end up actually loathing some of the other members of the Sons (especially that of Clay (Ron Perlman)). There’s one episode included in this 4th season that an event will occur (one of which I clearly, and obviously won’t reveal). Don’t be surprised if you end up finding yourself screaming at the television, quite possibly having the waterworks flow at the raw emotion of the scene. Truly, Sons of Anarchy (and I’ve said this before in reviews of Breaking Bad) just may be one of the best series on television today.

Video Quality

[Rating:4/5]

Sons of Anarchy: Season Four arrives with a 1:78:1 framed, AVC MPEG-4 encoded transfer, which for all purposes looks quite solid. Shot using Arri Alexa HD Camera, Anarchy has always had a very gritty look and feel to its image. The color palette captures the fictional Charming, California locale with a golden/bronze tint to it. The blacks of the SoA’s jackets are inky, with fine detail to them. Speaking of detail, facial close ups and flesh tones are accurate, with no notice of smearing or uneven contrast levels. Clarity is top notch, regardless of a well lit exterior shot or the dimly lit boardroom where the members meet. All in all, this transfer captures the essence of what SoA is all about.

Audio Quality

[Rating:4/5]

The series’ DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 track impresses, especially for a TV production. Dialogue is well reproduced throughout, with no real instance of drop out via the center channel. Atmosphere is rock solid, whether it be the roaring motorcycles or simple background chatter. During the heightened action sequences, LFE is deep and immersive, offering up a subtle ‘oomph’ courtesy of an explosion. Directionality excels as well as we can clearly understand and hear where all effects are coming from. All in all, this mix suits the series with no real issues.

Supplemental Materials

[Rating:2.5/5]

The supplements provided on this release are in High Definition:

  • Creator’s Cut: Extended Episodes – A series of deleted scenes, running 12:34 for episode “, 7:53 for episode “, and 3:22 for episode ” are shown.
  • Farewell Piney – *SPOILER SPOILER SPOILER* In 7:10, we’re given a tribute to Piney.
  • Fans of Anarchy – Running 4:47, this shows Series Creator Kurt Sutter and 2 hardcore fans on set chatting about what makes SoA…well, SoA.
  • Anarchy at House of Blues – This runs 10:20 in length and features a benefit show the creators put together at House of Blues after the sudden passing of a friend.
  • Commentaries – These are featured on five episodes. “Out” has Kurt Sutter, Paris Barclay, Charlie Hunnam, and Ron Perlman. “Hands” has Director Peter Weller, and a second track with Sutter, Katey Sagal, and Maggie Siff. “To Be” (the season finale split into 2 parts) features Sutter, Hunnam, Perlman, Mark Boone Junior, Dayton Callie, Theo Rossi, Kim Coates, Tommy Flanagan, and Ryan Hurst.

The Definitive Word

Overall:

[Rating:3.5/5]

If you’re reading this review of the fourth season of Sons of Anarchy, it’s clear you’re a fan of the series. Due to that, this Blu-ray set (from 20th Century Fox) is highly recommended. With fine V/A, and a few solid features, I can’t see why anyone wouldn’t want to pick this one up. If you haven’t watched an episode yet, clearly start at the beginning. Oh, and hurry! Season Five premiers September 11th, 2012!!

Additional Screen Captures

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Purchase Sons of Anarchy: Season Four on Blu-ray at CD Universe

Sons of Anarchy, Season 4 - Sons of Anarchy

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Purchase Sons of Anarchy: Season Four on Blu-ray at CD Universe

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Shop for more Blu-ray titles at Amazon.com

Overall
[Rating:3.5/5]
The Series
[Rating:4.5/5]
Video Quality
[Rating:4/5]
Audio Quality
[Rating:4/5]
Supplemental Materials
[Rating:2.5/5]

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