The Good

CSI: NY is nothing short of absorbing.

The Bad

I found it a little hard to find my way around all the extra features.

Having seen the original CSI show but never CSI: NY, I didn't know what to expect. Afterall, Gary Sinise as Mac Taylor projects a different kind of energy than my man, William Peterson. However, one common thread these shows share is that they have the same creative team, and because of that they are able to parse their locations and come up with very interesting, engaging and intriguing stories of forensic medicine. While I might come out more in favor of a show like Quincy, overall I feel that CSI: NY - The Complete Second Season is a very fulfilling experience.

This 6 disc set is packed with 24 episodes and what I found to be the standout was the quality of the writing. Overall, this show never seemed to lose anything. Whether we were dealing with episodes in the street, the New York nightlife, or quieter stories that don't always make headlines, the way CSI: NY - The Complete Second Season came off was nothing short of top notch.


Commentary Tracks

There are commentary tracks for the episodes "Summer in the City," "Grand Murder at Central Station," "Manhattan Manhunt," "Bad Beat" and "Trapped." I listened to the commentary for "Summer in the City" with David Von Ancken and editor Bill Zavala. These two discuss the characters on the show, they explain what's going on in "Summer in the City," the logistics of pulling the story off, when dolly shots and wind machines were employed, etc.. Overall, I think I should have listened to a different commentary track as this one was pretty by the book. Sadly, I didn't realize this until the commentary was over.

Top of the Heap

A New Look from the 35th Floor

Set Tours can go either way but this one was is really interesting as we are shown Mac Taylor's office, and it's broken down so we understand how this informs who his character is. From the newspaper clippings on the wall, to the awards he displays, everything is placed here to take viewers deeper into the psychology of this man. After this we see places like the Audio/Video room and the state of the art crime lab. was quite impressed with how far this show goes to present a form of TV reality.


Rolling with Jamalot

While the name might be a tad off-putting, it is a "Behind the Scenes" look at the "Jamamlot" episode. This centers around roller derby and we hear from the creative team about there being a concerted effort with the second season to have the episodes focus on New York. Then, the logistics of shooting in a roller derby were broken down and it's made clear that the action captured for those "derby scenes" was real.

Season 2 Ends With A Bang

They have focused on the Season Finale which also happened to be the last day of shooting. The cast and crew were weary, yet they knew they had to blow up a building so that seemed to lift people's spirits. The subject of 9/11 and the sensitive nature of blowing up a building in the city was addressed. I also found it interesting that aspects of the entire season were scaled down so that this explosion could take place. Also, the bomb is interesting because... okay, I won't give that away.


Widescreen Version - Enhanced for 16:9 TVs. As these episodes are as recent as 2005, I wasn't surprised at all to see how good the quality of the DVD compression was. In fact, I have had the chance to screen this show on an HD set (when it aired regularly) at my friends house, and I truly think some of that was captured with this release. Granted, I am still using a regular DVD player with a regular TV, there was a crispness and clarity of the images that recalled my HD experience.


Dolby Digital. I didn't notice that the actors were talking in that annoying, whispering cadence that so many shows seem to employ. Also, I didn't feel beat over the head by the mixture of sound and images. Everything had a somber tone but I have come to expect that from New York street shows. Overall, the audio seemed to be perfectly leveled to bring out all the nuance of this 6 disc set.


Detectives Mac Taylor and Stella Bonasera grace this front cover which has a steel-like rendering of the city behind them. The back of this slipcase features a shot of the cast, a description of the show, a Special Features listing, and on the bottom is a technical specs listing. All 6 discs pull out of this case in a book like piece of artwork that breaks down where the episodes are, where the Features are, and the discs also display images of various cast members. A little bulky and a little hard to negotiate, I think CBS should go the digipack route.

Final Word

A big portion of what I think makes this show work is the obvious chemistry between Mac Taylor and Det. Stella Bonasera (Melina Kanakaredes). She projects such an amazing strength in her role that it's easy to see why viewers have made CSI: NY a hit. I also wonder why she hasn't done more movies, but I think that might have something to do with the fact that she doesn't look like a young girl. She's only 37 but it seems that Hollywood likes to keep women in a much more age restrictive box than men. I certainly hopes she gets more breakout roles because, while she might never be a Julia or a Sandra, who she is is obviously just fine for everyone else.

CSI: NY - The Complete Second Season is as consistent as TV on DVD gets.

CSI: NY was released .