Jarod is back and is still being pursued by Miss Parker and Sydney, only now Brigitte and Mr. Lyle are thrown in to step up the search. Miss Parker and Sydney suddenly become the pursued themselves, due to Brigitte’s and Mr. Lyle’s own selfish motives. Jarod meanwhile moves from episode to episode, assuming new identities and trying to right the wrongs that have happened to others. He is also trying to come to terms with his brother’s untimely death, so we see a bit more of his character’s humanity in this go round.
Overall, I just didn’t think that The Pretender - Season 2 was really that much better or different than the first season. I thought it was good and perhaps had I been more engaged with the show overall, I might not have felt that I was simply watching the same thing only with a few minor differences. The fact that this show had two more seasons after this one, only seems to say that I don’t know what I am talking about. I am not really sure what I was expecting, I guess I just had hoped that for The Pretender - Season 2, things might be different. Basically, it seemed like the same show and one where you always knew that Jarod would end up okay.
Audio Commentary Tracks
Man, listening to these things was like having my gums cleaned. There are only two commentary tracks on here and they are for the “Red Rock Jarod” episode and “Bloodlines.” I didn’t expect Craig W. Sickle, Steven Long Mitchell and Fred Keller to actually watch the episodes and comment on them! I thought they would be telling stories and explaining their decisions, but it was just them watching the show and saying something every so often. The “Bloodlines” commentary was a lot better because Michael T. Weiss and Andrea Parker were also in on it. The “Bloodlines” commentary was a lot easier to listen to.
Making of Featurette
This interesting featurette is actually broken up into 3 segments over 3 DVDs. It looks at a few different aspects of the show, yet because it is broken up into 3 parts it can really focus on them. The first segment looks at the show in general, where it’s going in the second season and it’s reason for heading in that direction. The second segment looks at identity and not only what that means to Jarod’s character but all the characters. Lastly, the third segment looks at the idea of family and what it means in relation to this show. While I found these “Making Of” pieces to be pretty standard, overall they were interesting to screen simply because it gave me a fuller idea about the show.
Anamorphic Widescreen - 1.78:1. There is a lot in this show that seems to have foreshadowed much about today’s television fare. Whether it is the more cerebral material, the use of widescreen or the overall staginess of the scenes, The Pretender seems to have left it’s mark even though it only ran for 4 years. What is really interesting is that the show doesn’t seem dated and the episodes I screened are over 7 years old! While that might not seem like that long ago, it is almost a decade and yet nothing has really changed in terms of the “look” of TV shows.
Dolby Digital. English, Spanish and French Dolby Surround. Subtitled in English and Spanish. This show has a very structured feel both in the audio and video aspects of it. It just seems very solidly put together. The creators knew where they wanted the characters and themes to go, and the episodes are merely the execution of those ideas. Perhaps that’s why I didn’t find this season as interesting as I found the first one, simply because the creative team behind The Pretender was really finding their way. As it was the first season there was a lot of uncertainty whereas in The Pretender - Season 2, they had things a lot more worked out.
This cover looks almost identical to the first season except for the colors used to highlight Jarod and the fact that his hair seems longer now. The back features a small collage of Jarod assuming different identities, as well as three shots from various episodes in the show. There is a well written description of Season Two, an extras listing and technical specs. The four discs that make up this set are housed economically in two slim DVD cases. The picture of Jarod from the front cover is the exact same one on these two slim cases. The back of the cases has an episode index for each disc as well as a description of the episodes. Fox gets extra credit for housing this Collector’s Edition in a digipack.
As much as I may not think that this second season of The Pretender was all that great, I do think that Michael T. Weiss and Andrea Parker both did very good work here. Weiss is a good actor and there’s something about the way he embodies Jarod that makes you want to go along with him on his various incarnations. Maybe it’s because we know that he knows he is playing somebody else, therefore half the fun is watching him pull off a different person. And Parker just really brings a sense of “sexy cool” to her role. The fact that I don’t think she is dark haired in real life, only adds to how much she takes on the life of this character because I would never have known that that wasn’t her real hair color.
Fans of this show will be happy to own The Pretender - Season 2 on DVD. It is a continuation of the exploits of one of their favorite characters, and it is no less intense or interesting than the first season in terms of subject matter. For me, I sort of feel that if you have seen one you have seen them all.
The Pretender was released .