The Good

Acorn Media doles out mucho extras with this release.

The Bad

Sadly, I have never been a fan of TV shows or movies set during this feudal period.

Giving the legend of Robin Hood a bit of a 20th Century Flavor, Robin of Sherwood: Set 2, gives us Jason Connery as Robert of Huntingdon. Getting the old gang back together after Robin of Loxley dies and continuing to battle the greedy Sheriff of Nottingham, this 654 minute, 5 disc set is bound to have something for everyone who loves this story. Episode One, "Herne's Son," kicks off with a 2 parter that finds Robert taking over for Robin and being reluctant about his new position. "Cromm Cruac" centers on a village that Robin and his men visit that is all smiles on the outside, yet, seems to have evil intentions for Robin and his gang brewing under the surface. Lastly, "Rutterkin" sees family ties pushed to the breaking point as Robin finds himself pitted against his uncle, Lord Edgar.

While I might not be the biggest fan of stories set in around this time period, I will say that Robin of Sherwood: Set 2 is filled with many episodes, many extras, and has eye catching packaging to boot. This is the sort of release that should please fans of this show and collector's alike.

Features

Commentary Tracks

Featuring actors like Jason Connery, Mark Ryan (Nasir), and Clive Mantle (Little John) among others, they have given us commentary tracks for a decent amount of the episodes on this release. I obviously didn't listen to all of these but I listened to the one for "Herne's Son" mainly because this was the first track to open up the show. The actors discuss putting this production together, what stunts they did and didn't do, what it was like getting to play these characters and galavant around on horseback, etc. What really helps put across the realism of these stories is the acting and I enjoyed how forthcoming everybody was on these tracks.

Retrospective Documentaries and Behind the Scenes Footage

Clannad: Scoring Robin of Sherwood

This featurette looks at the score behind this show. So much of what helps put across a period piece is the music that underscores what is happening on the screen. While I didn't pay too much attention to it while I was watching the DVDs, I will say that this featurette does make one appreciate all the hard work that goes into pulling something like this off. Getting the right tone to score a movie, even a scene, is hard work. Now imagine having to do that for multiple episodes on a weekly basis? The work of Clannad should not go unnoticed and it doesn't here.

Outtakes

Showcasing the characters messing up lines, laughing during scenes and everything else, I would suggest watching this if you can't imagine this time period being funny. Lets be honest, other than Mel Brooks we really haven't seen too many send ups of this time period. Since there aren't a lot of laughs in the show proper you would be wise to watch this section and get them here.

Video

4:3 Full Screen. Since these shows were created in the mid-1980s, I wasn't sure how well they were going to wear on this release. Let me just say that those feelings were dismissed once I sat down and began watching. Yes, I will admit that this show, even for a period piece, does look somewhat dated. At the same time because it is a period piece things don't look so out of place because the show isn't being compared to other shows in a present day context.

Audio

Close Captioned. The audio on this release was good. Nothing about the sound grabbed my attention too greatly, but let me just say that I was never taken out of the stories because of the audio. Things sounded really well put together here but the ultimate richness in the audio came not from how it was leveled but more because of the score.

Package

This slipcase cover features black, gold and white as well as an awesome silhouette of Robin and his gang. The back cover of this release continues this look, gives us more shots from these episodes, serves up a description of this show, a technical specs listing and special features. All 5 discs in this set are stored in individual slipcases which offer more detailed information on each episode, as well as where to find various special features.

Final Word

When I was first given this set to review I wasn't that excited. I just have a hard time with period pieces. Yes, I know, they are meant to be allegories for today's time (afterall, aside from technological advancements, how much do things really change?), yet I just am not able embrace these sorts of TV shows or movies the way I would like to. I am not saying that Robin of Sherwood: Set 2 completely changed around my way of thinking, but I will say that this release did give me a new perspective. There are a lot of production values at work to bring off a show of this nature and I never felt like I was merely seeing people trotting around in costumes. At the same time, I wish that I had more interest in this subject matter because I think that would have made my viewing experience infinitesimally richer.

Robin of Sherwood was released .