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Warehouse 13: Season 2

Universal // Unrated // June 28, 2011
List Price: $49.98 [Buy now and save at Amazon]

Review by John Sinnott | posted June 17, 2011 | E-mail the Author
The Show:


 


The first season of Warehouse 13 was okay.  It
wasn't great, but it wasn't bad
either.  The show had some potential and
luckily that gets explored in season two. 
The set of shows builds on the foundation laid by the first
season and
expands the Warehouse 13 world.  It stays
away from the menace-of-the-week formula by creating a season-long
problem for
the agents to tackle while also fleshing out a lot of the background of
both
characters and the warehouse itself.


 


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Series background:


 


When two secret service agents, Pete Lattimer (Eddie
McClintock) and Myka Bering (Joanne Kelly) end up saving the life of
the
President of the United States when a strange Aztec idol takes over a
museum
worker, they get more than a pat on the back. 
They're visited that evening by the mysterious Mrs. Frederic
(CCH
Pounder) and ordered to appear at a remote location in South Dakota the
next
day.





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Arriving at the location, the pair discovers a huge, old
warehouse built into the side of a mountain and discovers that they've
been
transferred to Warehouse 13, "America's Attic". 
It's the place where objects that are too dangerous to be loose
in the
world are stored and cataloged.  These
pieces, called artifacts, range from the fairly benign, like a plane
that has
to be chained down... it came from the Bermuda Triangle and the Triangle
has been
trying to pull it back ever since, to the down right dangerous, like
the
aforementioned Aztec idol.  Lattimer and
Bering have been transferred to the Warehouse and under the watchful
eye of
Artie (Saul Rubinek) they're charged with tracking down artifacts and
transporting them safely back to Warehouse 13 where they can do no harm.


 


The problem is that Pete and Myka don't get along very
well.  Pete's more of an impulsive,
go-with-your-gut-feeling type of guy and Myka is the studious agent who
plans
everything out carefully.  They
frequently clash when on assignments though they have an unspoken
respect for
each other.


 


This season:


 


There was quite an interesting cliff-hanger at the end of last
season.  An ex-agent, MacPherson (Roger
Rees), has managed to escape from Warehouse 13 after being bronzed.style=""> 
Not only was he able to escape, but he also
'debronzed'
a second criminal trapped in the warehouse. 
Who is this mysterious criminal and what does Mac Pherson want
with
him?  It's up to Lattimer and Myka to
track down the rouge agent and his partner in crime, figure out what
they are
planning, and somehow stop them.  All
while taking care of their regular workload too.





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This season worked very well, mainly because there was an
overreaching story arc that had a lot of twists and turns. 
Every time viewers think they know where the
plot is going, something changes that pulls the rug out from underneath
their feet.  It kept the season interesting.


 


The show also takes some time to explore the background of
the Warehouse itself (why is it #13?  Are
there 12 others?) and fills in some of the details about Pete and
Myka's
personal lives.  One of the running gags
that worked well is the Warehouse's cover story:  It's
an IRS records warehouse.  That means Pete
and Myka are IRS agents as
far as the residents of the local town are concerned, which doesn't
endear them
to any of the citizens.  (Another gag I
enjoyed is the name of the nearby city: 
Univille short for unincorporated village.)  


 


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While the show did take a giant step forward this season,
there are still some problems.  Pete's
adolescent behavior and references to pop culture seem to be lifted
right out
of Psych, and Myka's encyclopedic
knowledge and abilities (she's an excellent fencer we discover) make
her a bit
too perfect.  The show isn't quite as
funny as it could be, and the action sequences aren't as exciting as
we'd like
but the stories are interesting enough to mainly make up for those
flaws.     


 


The DVD:



 


All twelve episodes that make up season one are contained on
three DVDs that come in a custom case with slipcase.


 


Audio:


 


The show's DD 5.1 soundtrack is fine, are does an adequate
job in both the dialog heavy scenes and the more audio-intensive
actions
sections.  The full soundstage is used to
good effect, with some nice subtle background effects thrown to the
rears.  In one scene a door bell rings and
the sound
comes from behind the viewers, which made me jump. I like stuff like
that.  In the more sonically busy parts the
subwoofer gets a bit of work, and the room fills with sound.style="">  The bad news is that the dialog is sometimes
mixed a little low, and it's easy to miss comments that are mumbled or
said
under someone's breath.  There were a
couple of times that I had to turn on the optional English subtitles to
understand what was said, but this happen rarely though it was still a
pain.   


 


Video:


 


The anamorphic 1.78:1 image looks very good.  Almost
too good.  The lines are tight and crisp
and the level
of detail is very nice, but when an effect heavy scene pops up it's
easy to
tell that CGI is being used.  The
computer work doesn't blend seamlessly with the rest of the image which
is too
bad.  Aside from that the colors look
fine and the blacks are nice.  Digitally
there's a slight amount of aliasing in a few scenes, but it's mainly
limited to
the background and nothing to complain about.


 


Extras:


 


The set has a good amount of extras, which is always
nice.  The show comes with commentary
tracks to three episodes with various members of the cast and crew
giving their
thoughts on the show, as well as several video featurettes.style="">  One warning: 
The video features are spread over the three discs but they
cover the
whole season.  In other words, there are
spoilers aplenty in them if you haven't seen all of season two yet.style="">  First off is A Thrilleromedy
which gathers the cast and crew to discuss how the
show has changed over the second season. 
A Stitch in Time is an
examination of the group's new nemesis for this season, and Designing
the Warehouse
looks at the
warehouse, some of the props in the background, and the steam-punk
influences
in the design.


 

One of the episodes in this season features Frago, from the
Syfy show Eureka,
making an appearance.   They
also include the sister episode of w:st="on">Eureka where
Claudia visits the town filled with geniuses. 
The two episodes aren't connected aside from the characters
visiting the
shows, but it was nice to see the episode of w:st="on">Eureka. 


 


The set is wrapped up with several deleted scenes, a gag
real (that's not too funny) video blogs, and a photo gallery.


 


Final Thoughts:


 


Warehouse 13 improves a lot with the second season. 
There are still some plot holes and
inconsistencies, but the stories are more interesting and they've done
a good
job of building on the foundation created in the first season.style="">  A light SF show that's worth checking out. style="">Recommended.
Buy from Amazon.com

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