Friday, September 07, 2007
Written by Senora Bicho
The 2007 fall television lineup starts soon and the season premiere of Grey’s Anatomy is on the top of my list, so when the Season 3 Seriously Extended DVD collection arrived, I was ready to dive in for a refresher. I thoroughly enjoyed this season and think it is some of the best writing out there, although I did not think it was as intense or compelling as Season 2. However, Season 3 does deliver in continuing the overriding theme of tortured love.
For those of you not familiar with the show, Grey’s Anatomy follows the trials and tribulations of Meredith Grey, a surgical intern at Seattle Grace Hospital. Our beloved characters survived a lot in season 3: careers moving forward and backward, the destruction of key relationships that have been fostered throughout the entire series, and many deaths, of which the most profound and bold was that of Meredith. When I first heard about this, the idea sounded poorly conceived, but it was thought provoking and very well executed.
This show is not just another medical drama. What makes it different is the amazing depth and personality of each character. The writing also helps to create a bond with the viewer. You feel connected to these people and care what happens to them. Even the characters you don’t like, you come to understand and respect. Dr. McSteamy, played by Eric Dane, joined the cast as a regular and is a prime example. He burst onto the scene as an arrogant, sexist jerk. It was great watching his character, learning what makes him tick. The storylines, while overly dramatic and extremely intense, parallel experiences in everyday life. The narration, provided by Meredith in every episode, always manages to hit home at some level.
One of the main storylines of the season was the disfigured Jane Doe character and her relationship with Dr. Karev (Justin Chambers). I was not particularly fond of this storyline. I felt it was trying to replicate the Izzie and Denny relationship without the intensity or real connection. One of the extras is a behind the scenes look at the making of Jane Doe. This was well done and provided more depth to the character and the storyline, making me want to watch it again.
Along with all of the episodes from the season, the set includes some fun extras. There are four extended episodes, and if you are like me and don’t recognize the new material, you will be happy to find a collection of all of the season’s unaired scenes. There are some good moments that provide interesting background, but for the most part it is clear why they were deleted.
There are also some episodes with audio commentary. Chandra Wilson and Kate Walsh cover Episode 1 and it is just like watching the show with your close girlfriends as they giggle their way through it. Ellen Pompeo and Kate Burton discuss episode 14 and it is wonderful to hear their thoughts on their mother-daughter relationship on the show along with their other thoughts and insights. Sandra Oh is the last commentary in episode 21. It would have more compelling if she was with someone else to bounce ideas off of but she does provide some interesting information. The other bonus features include a goofy day at the track with Patrick Dempsey (he races in his free time), and a much better featurette on Pompeo and her character. Last, but not least, there is the usual favorite character scenes and outtakes; nothing particularly engrossing here.
This was a significant season for the series. It moved from Sunday night behind Desperate Housewives against the powerhouse CSI on Thursdays. It was doing well in the ratings, even surpassing Housewives, so ABC decided to make it an anchor show on its own night. It did extremely well and held its own in its new timeslot.
There was quite a bit of drama off screen with Isaiah Washington’s inappropriate comments, which led to his eventual dismissal after the season’s end. He was a critical part of the show and I am sorry to see him go.
We will also be losing Walsh to the Private Practice spin-off. We had to endure a taste of that show through an extended episode. I had high expectations of this new show. With the ensemble cast of Tim Daly, Amy Brenneman, and Taye Diggs paired up with the creative mind behind Grey’s Anatomy, how could it be anything but great? Unfortunately, it was far from it. The situations were contrived and completely unbelievable. I love Walsh's character because she has such a strong personality that allows her to hold her own against all of the male egos. In Private Practice she is a whimpering, pathetic shell of the woman we have come to know and love. If the partial pilot episode is any indication of the show’s future, it will be cancelled quickly and Walsh will return. I certainly hope so anyways.
All in all I enjoyed the DVD collection and it did get me even more excited for Season 4. If you loved the season, it will be a necessary addition to your collection sitting beside Season 1 and Season 2. So go out and get it before the season premiere. Seriously.