This 14 episode show really gives you the “nuts and bolts” on the amount of work it takes to make one of these kinds of vehicles. Also, it shows you that you don’t need money so much as vision and belief in yourself to get things done.
I really don’t consider a bonus episode to be an “Extra Feature” unless there are some legitimate “Extra Features” (commentary tracks, featurettes) to go along with it. The theme song for Monster Garage is atrocious.
Monster Garage - Season Three was something I really didn’t know anything about. In fact, other than knowing that he was now Mr. Sandra Bullock, I had no idea what Jesse James actually did. At first I thought he might be a motocross guy, than I thought he might be a tattoo artist but as it turns out he builds cars. And guess what? This show, which if I hadn’t been asked to review I probably never would have watched, is pretty darn good. I just think that there is something in the documentary-like/Reality TV show formula that makes this show very easy to digest. Knowing nothing about cars or anything else, it was really interesting seeing James and his team build a “Street Line Racer,” a “Jet Car,” a “Hovercraft”, etc... . What really amazed me the most is that this show totally debunks the whole myth of the mechanic. Everyone seems to characterize them as people without any education, well let me tell you something, you have got to be pretty darn smart to build a working automobile. I am not sure what kind of math is used (physics?) but this is some pretty heavy stuff. It’s also inspiring that so much of their creations come from James and his team’s need to express themselves.
This bonus episode is titled “Monster Nation” and it basically follows Jesse and his people as they check out others who do the same kind of work as them. This episode gives us a car that somebody uses as a mobile barbecue as well as some outrageous automobiles that will NEVER be street legal. What I really liked about this episode was how Jesse spoke about taking that first metal shop class in high school and how that was a real eye opening experience for him. Basically, taking that class let him know that there was something he could excel at if he was willing to work at it.
1.33:1 - Full Screen. This show looks like a typical Reality TV show but what I really liked (and this sadly has nothing to do with the DVD) was how interesting all the cars looked. I mean where do these people get the ideas to build cars that look like this? And then when you add to this that the cars actually work, and people are able to commandeer these vehicles... it really is a site to behold. This show has been shot on some type of high end video, so as a result it seems like the DVD compression would be made that much better. This show looks good but then so do most Reality TV shows.
Dolby Digital - English Stereo. Close Captioned. Okay, the theme song for this show is awful. The sound in all the other departments is fine but the main song for this TV show is just really bad. In fact, I was almost beside myself whenever it would come on. Other than that, with all that is going on, all the different people that they are talking to, all the different conditions they have to shoot in, this show sounds really good. Nothing that is going to take anybody’s breath away but it sounds decent.
Jesse James is on the front cover looking like the singer of the band Pennywise. Behind him are a bunch of other cars. Don’t let the “jockness” of this cover fool you, it really is a good show. The back features some shots from the show. One is of Jesse James and the others are of various cars he has made. There is a description of this DVDs contents, a “Special Feature” listing, an episode listing, a credits list and some technical specs. Each disc in this 3 disc set has it’s own plastic cover with different pictures from the show on it. The back of each cover has the episodes for those discs indexed out and a description of each episode. I am a huge fan of the digipack design and I like that the creators of this DVD have kept things simple. Good job, Discovery Channel!
All in all, I can see why this show is on the Discovery Channel. While at first glance it may seem like something that is ripe for MTV, it is educational and it also “ups” the Discovery Channel’s cool meter. I also really liked Jesse James. With the look he cultivates, one might get the impression that there isn’t a lot happening upstairs. However, just seeing him talk and watching him work will change any preconceived notions you might have. Also, you are seeing someone who really delivers some amazing results so as the saying goes, “It ain’t braggin’ if you can back it up.
Monster Garage - Season Three is really that rare hybrid of being both an entertaining and informative show.
Monster Garage was released .