Will & Grace - Season Two
Lionsgate Home Entertainment // Unrated // $44.99 // March 23, 2004
Review by Jeffrey Robinson | posted April 21, 2004
M O V I E
V I D E O
A U D I O
E X T R A S
R E P L A Y
A D V I C E
Highly Recommended
E - M A I L
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R E V I E W S
Graphical Version
The Second Season

In 1998 prime time television was hit with a remarkable new series, Will & Grace. After a very successful first season, the show became very popular and gained an enormous fan base. This is due to the unique comedy that the show provides. Will & Grace tells the tale of two best friends, a gay attorney and an interior designer, along with their friends Jack, an extremely flamboyant homosexual, and Karen, an overly wealthy alcoholic. The success of season one provided a platform to introduce the cast of the show, during which the characters were developed and in season two, they've hit their prime.

In the first season of Will & Grace, the cast, Will Truman (Eric McCormack), Grace Adler (Debra Messing), Karen Walker (Megan Mullally), and Jack McFarland (Sean Hayes), were still getting accustomed to their roles. For instance, in season one, the extremely high-pitched voice that comes from Karen's mouth isn't very high-pitched. However, in season two, Karen's voice becomes the high-pitched voice that we have all come to know and love. Furthermore, the jokes about Karen being extremely rich and having a slight drinking problem are fleshed out even more. Karen wasn't the only character to undergo a few changes, as Jack McFarland returns in season two slightly different. In season one, we saw Jack as a needy and flamboyant person, but in season two, it's like his personality was kicked up about 100 levels. The crazy acts he performs and his odd quips make him an integral part of the show's comedy. Will and Grace, being the main stars of the show, generally receive a bit more camera time than their supporting counterparts. As a result, Will and Grace's characters seemed to have been much more developed in season one and in season two, they don't feel extremely different. The pair seems to work very well together in each episode, as their characters seem to complement the good and bad of each other. In general, with season two, the cast feels much more comfortable with their roles. This means that you're in for a lot more laughs.

The show has unique comedy that makes each episode feel fun and highly entertaining. In season two, as seen in the first season, the majority of the comedy comes from sexual innuendos that revolve around gay humor. Each episode includes many comical stories about dating, relationships, and much more. Will & Grace proves to be a unique comedy, with its audacious cast. However, some of the episodes' plots tend to feel somewhat repetitive. These plots are similar to what you'd find in other popular sitcoms like Frasier or Friends. "I Never Promised You the Olive Garden" features an episode whose plot is entirely unoriginally. Will and Grace in this episode get into trouble when they lie to their friends, Rob and Ellen, to spend the night out with a younger and hipper couple. The concept of lying in comedy has been used over and over. Despite the episode lacking originality, it's still very entertaining to see the comical outcomes from Will and Grace making the lie worse.

Even though some of the episodes have a repetitive feeling, there are episodes that scream originality. In an original and comical episode "Das Boob", Grace gets some fake boobs that are filled with water to impress a hunk from her high school days. Grace, beware of sharp objects! This was a great episode that puts Will and Grace in a few embarrassing and funny situations. Another episode that features the show's originality, also my favorite of the season, is "Girls, Interrupted". In this episode, Jack meets a formerly gay-turned-straight guy at a club, played by Neil Patrick Harris. Harris operates a support group that tries to help gay men and women during their transition to become heterosexuals. One of the best parts about this episode is that we get to see Jack take on a different kind of role. In order to "seduce" Harris, Jack pretends to be a straight man and repeatedly tries to make subtle approaches to hook up with Harris' character. The reactions of Harris' character alone are enough to warrant considering this episode one of the best episodes of the season.

Mix a hilarious cast with episodes like "Girls, Interrupted" and "Das Boob" and you've got yourself a winner. Season two of Will & Grace seems to get better with each episode. Unlike some television shows that never manage to have a successful returning season, Will & Grace definitely did. Season two promises to make you laugh, smile, and leave you entertained for hours.

The DVD

Video:
The DVD release of Will & Grace: Season Two is presented in its original television aspect ratio, 1.33:1 Full Frame color. Overall, the picture looks very good, with a relatively crisp and clean feel. There are very minor color distortions that are the product of video compression. Furthermore, the video compression gives a slight blocky look around detailed objects. Despite the minor imperfections in the picture, it is substantially better looking than what you would expect to see from broadcast or cable television.

Sound:
The audio track that is included in this DVD release is given in English 2.0 Dolby digital stereo sound. The dialogue throughout the feature is very easily heard, but feels a little flat. However, since ground-breaking sound effects aren't required in this show, the flat audio seems to fit well. The audio track also includes the "built-in-in-laughter" that many studios put in their sitcoms. Overall, the audio sounds fairly good. Complimenting the audio, subtitles are given in the English and Spanish languages. The subtitles appear on the bottom of the screen and do not interfere with the viewing of the feature.

Extras:
The extras that are included with the second season of Will & Grace are limited to twelve "Themed Featurettes". Each of these featurettes follow a recurring theme and show a montage of related clips from season two. The featurettes are the following "The Sounds of Comedy", "Out and About", "Speaking of Alcohol... ", "Enter Stage Left", "Hugs & Kisses", "9 to 5-ish", "Fashion Quips", "With a Song in Our Hearts", "Everybody Dance", "A Rose By Any Other Name...", "It Ain't Over 'Til the Fat Joke is Told", and "Let's Get Physical". The featurettes provide some mild entertain, as most reflect some great highlights of the show. However, while provide some entertainment, they're not nearly as exciting as the individual episodes. Some of the themed featurettes are reoccurring themes that are found on the season one DVD release.

I was honestly very disappointed with the extras. Similar to David Blair's review of Will & Grace Season One, I was highly disappointed that there were no deleted scenes or bloopers/outtakes included. Furthermore, the DVD release of season one included interviews with the cast, director, and creators of the show, which was not included in the season two release.

Final Thoughts:
I personally was never a huge fan of the series. In fact, the first few episodes I saw, I really didn't care for. I never found the nature of the show very attractive. However, a few months ago, after seeing the cast on Larry King Live and a few more episodes, my impressions changed. I found myself feeling very attracted to the show, mainly for the extreme and somewhat racy humor that you won't find in a lot of other sitcoms. Giving the show another chance, I found that I really enjoy it. Season one was great, but season two was even better! Fans of the show will be happy, and newcomers, prepare yourself to laugh until you wet your pants. Without hesitation, I highly recommend season two of Will & Grace.



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