Dog the Bounty Hunter - The Wedding Special
A&E Video // Unrated // $12.95 // December 12, 2006
Review by Aaron Beierle | posted January 2, 2007
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Those who've watched the film "Domino" (based upon real-life bounty hunter Domino Harvey) recently may be interested in the A & E series "Dog: The Bounty Hunter", which was spun off from a special called "Take This Job", which profiled unusual careers. The series follows real-life bounty hunter "Dog" Chapman who, with the help of his family (wife Beth; Dog's brother, Tim; Dog's son, Leland; and Dog's nephew, Justin), tracks down criminals on the Hawaiian islands.

The series jumps between Dog's home life and professional life as Dog takes care of his family both at home and while chasing down the bad guys. Given that it's a profession that one hears so little about (I'm guessing intentionally, as the hunters probably don't want every trick of the trade to get out), it's interesting to see the way that Chapman and his crew operate (although I'm unsure if it's similar to how other bounty hunters work) on a day-to-day basis.

After capturing their target, Dog (who had a criminal past and then went on the right side of the law) and his crew try to get help for the people that they arrest and convince them to try and correct their ways or direct them to places where they can get help. The difference with "Dog" is that the show is able to occasionally get under the situation and show the sadness and tragedy or people who have completely lost their way. Sometimes, the crew run into people who are just plain nasty. Those are the two sides of the characters on the show, as well: they're intimidating folks who are always walking into a potentially volatile situation (and an unpredictable one - the people the crew questions don't always tell the truth, requiring Dog and his crew to play detective) - they can be tough if needed, but they can also show compassion, crack jokes and try to get people on the right track.

"The Wedding Special" is a 90-minute/2-part episode that aired on A & E, which follows Dog and Beth as they finally get married after ten years of living with one another. However, in the middle of trying to relax and trying to plan out their wedding, Dog and the group get word of a dangerous criminal on the loose. Putting a halt to planning, the group rolls out on the lookout for leads in their search, while Beth tries to continue wedding preparation.

The first half of the program concludes with Dog catching the criminal (after a lengthy tracking process that has Dog involving the young man's father) and trying to set him straight. The second half pics up with the wedding approaching, but duty still calls as Dog and the others head out in hot persuit of another fugitive who isn't as easy to catch. Meanwhile, Beth becomes irritated at the interruptions going on a mere day before the wedding is to occur.

While the wedding does start off as planned, tragedy occurs when Dog gets word on his wedding day that his daughter was in a car accident and passed away. The episode follows Dog as he tries to cope with the loss and makes the decision to go through with his wedding. Overall, these two episodes present a couple of exciting cases for Dog and some emotional moments. While this is only one episode (and would have made a good extra on a full season set), $9.99 (at most stores) isn't too bad a price.


VIDEO: "Dog" is presented in the show's original 1.33:1 full-frame aspect ratio by A & E Home Entertainment. The show is shot with hand-held video cameras, but it still looks awfully good, as the show looks continually crisp and clear - also helped by the fact that many scenes take place during the day.

The presentation does show some slight shimmer at times, but otherwise looks crisp and clean. No pixelation or edge enhancement appears, nor are there any issues with the source material. Colors look natural and crisp, with no smearing or other issues.

SOUND: : "Dog" is presented in Dolby 2.0, and the audio sounds crisp and clear throughout. Dialogue remains easily understood, with no distortion or other issues. Music (including the Ozzy Osbourne theme track) sounds full and well-recorded, as well.

EXTRAS: We get 6 featurettes ("The Ring Part 1", "The Ring Part 2", "It Takes Two To Tango", "Beth Hunts For Shoes", "The Bow Wow Vow" and "A Tribute to Dog and Beth"), although these are quite short and are more deleted scenes than featurettes. Finally, we get a photo gallery.

Final Thoughts: Overall, these two episodes present a couple of exciting cases for Dog and some emotional moments. Again, this seems like more something that would be an extra on a full season set of the series, but at $9.99 (at most stores), fans may want to pick it up. Recommended.

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