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Bored to Death: The Complete Third Season 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 (48kHz/24-bit), French DTS 5.1, Spanish DTS 2.0
  • Subtitles: English SDH, French, Spanish
  • Region: ABC  (Region-Free)
  • Rating: TV-MA
  • Run Time: 203 Mins.
  • Discs: 2 (2 x Blu-ray)
  • Studio: HBO Home Entertainment
  • Blu-ray Release Date: September 4, 2012
  • List Price: $49.99

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

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]

This HBO half-hour comedy series from creator/writer Jonathan Ames just seems to get funnier with multiple viewings, such is the depth and complexity of the repartee that makes the series so funny, yet intelligent. Bored to Death, in its third season, continues this hilarious send up of pulp detective novels following the author turned amateur gumshoe Jonathan (Jason Schwartzman; Scott Pilgrim vs. the World; Rushmore) and his two colorful friends, the older father figure and confirmed pothead George (Ted Danson; TV’s CSI: Crime Scene Investigation; TV’s Cheers) and comic book author Ray (Zach Galifianakis; Puss in Boots; The Hangover Part II). Season three finds the trio facing the usual series of outrageous circumstances, beginning with Jonathan being framed for murder, George trying to derail his daughter’s engagement to a guy his own age, and Ray’s “elder love” with guest star Olympia Dukakis (Moonstruck). Also in season three, Jonathan goes on journey to find his biological father after finding out he was the product of a sperm bank. Ray begins to spend time with the son fathered with his stolen sperm. Of course, the rivalries between Jonathan and Louis Greene (John Hodgman; TV’s Community; TV’s The Venture Bros.) and George and Antrem (Oliver Platt; TV’s The Big C; X-Men: First Class; Love and Other Drugs; Benny & Joon) continue, reaching ridiculous proportions, not the least of which results in an embarrassing episode on the Dick Cavett show. Comedian Sarah Silverman (Peep World; TV’s Robot Chicken; School of Rock) also guest stars as a friendship counselor for George and Jonathan.

Video Quality

[Rating:5/5]

Bored to Death continues to be produced in high definition using Arri Alexa and Arri D-21 cameras. The series arrives on Blu-ray in an excellent AVC/MPEG-4 1080p encodement that is vastly superior to broadcast versions. The image, though natively high definition, has an almost organic, film-like appearance at times with whatever layer of video noise there is looking more natural and grain-like than anything electronic. Colors are natural, from the warm midtones of the interiors to cooler exterior imagery and the bright pop of primaries. Detail is sharp while contrast is strong, offering extended shadow details and deep darker tones.

Audio Quality

[Rating:4.5/5]

The English DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 (48kHz/24-bit) soundtrack is mostly dialogue-driven, but it is ambient and atmospheric, supplying an ample amount of natural sounds in the surround channels and clean dialogue. The dynamics have a natural range while dialogue is clean with no hints of clipping.

Supplemental Materials

[Rating:3.5/5]

Bored to Death gets a rather strong supplementary package that includes select episode commentaries with the creators and actors as well as numerous outtakes and deleted scenes in HD.

The supplements:

  • Audio Commentaries:
    • Episode 1 “The Blonde in the Woods” with Jason Schwartzman (Jonathan), Jonathan Ames (writer/series creator), and Michael Lehmann (director)
    • Episode 3 “The Black Clock of Time” with Jason Schwartzman (Jonathan), John Hodgman (Louis), Jonathan Ames (writer/series creator), and Michael Lehmann (director)
    • Episode 5 “I Keep Taking Baths Like Lady MacBeth” with Jason Schwartzman (Jonathan), Zach Galifianakis (Ray), Ted Danson (George), Jonathan Ames (writer/series creator), and Tristram Shapeero (director)
    • Episode 8 “Nothing I Can’t Handle by Running Away” with Jason Schwartzman (Jonathan), Zach Galifianakis (Ray), Ted Danson (George), Jonathan Ames (writer/series creator), and Adam Bernstein (director)
  • Inside the Episodes 1 – 8 (1.78:1; 1080p/24) – Writer/creator Jonathan Ames discusses each episode in these brief featurettes.
  • Deleted Scenes (1.78:1; 1080p/24):
    • Episode 1
    • Episode 2
    • Episode 3 Deleted Scene 1
    • Episode 3 Deleted Scene 2
    • Episode 3 Deleted Scene 3
    • Episode 4
    • Episode 6
  • Outtakes (1.78:1; 1080p/24):
    • Episode 2 Outtake 1
    • Episode 2 Outtake 2
    • Episode 2 Outtake 3
    • Episode 4 Outtake 1
    • Episode 4 Outtake 2
    • Episode 4 Outtake 3
    • Episode 5 Outtake
    • Episode 6 Outtake
    • Episode 7 Outtake
    • Episode 8 Outtake 1
    • Episode 8 Outtake 2
    • Episode 8 Outtake 3
    • Episode 8 Outtake 4

The Definitive Word

Overall:

[Rating:4.5/5]

Comedy on television, even on HBO, rarely gets more wonderful and more intelligent than Bored to Death. The tongue-in-cheek dialogue, literary allusions, send up of pulp detective novels and film noir easily blend together for a glorious mix of hip, modern comedy cool. The third season continues the strength that built up in season two and arrives in a strong Blu-ray release from HBO. Pick this up and watch it straight through, it gets better the more you watch it.

Additional Screen Captures

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Purchase Bored to Death: Season 2 on Blu-ray at CD Universe

Shop for more Blu-ray titles at Amazon.com

[amazon-product]B005LAJ1N6[/amazon-product]

Purchase Bored to Death: Season 2 on Blu-ray at CD Universe

Shop for more Blu-ray titles at Amazon.com

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


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2 COMMENTS

  1. I love this show so much, and can’t believe they would cancel it as it was getting better and better like you said. The characters were so real and intelligent that it served as the balancing force for all of the Jersey spinoffs that clog programming schedules. I missed a few episodes from the last season so I rented the box set through my Blockbuster @Home account (would have loved but buy, but poor college student) so that I could say that I had seen every one. I was really glad that I got to see them, but it just left me with a feeling of loss for the series. I was talking to a coworker at Dish about it, and we both thought it was one of the most unique shows that had ever been on TV. I hope that the death of this show does not signal the death of smart TV.

    • I just noticed your comment, and I have to say that I couldn’t agree more. Bored to Death was so intelligently written and multilayered, it often got better and better, not only with each season, but with each viewing of each season. That might have been one of its problems, it was too much of a thinking man’s comedy. ;)

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