Blu-ray Review: THE LEFTOVERS: THE COMPLETE FIRST SEASON

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THE LEFTOVERS stars Justin Theroux, Amy Brenneman, Christopher Eccleston, Liv Tyler, Chris Zylka, Margaret Qualley, Carrie Coon, Emily Meade, Amanda Warren, Ann Dowd, Michael Gaston, Max Carver, Charlie Carver and Annie Q. The series was created by Damon Lindelof and Tom Perrotta, with Lindelof, Perrotta, Peter Berg and Sarah Aubrey executive producing.

The Leftovers: The Complete First Season is based on the 2011 bestselling novel by Perrotta and is seen primarily through the eyes of police chief Kevin Garvey (Justin Theroux) as he experiences life post “the Departure.” After what can only be explained as an instance similar to the biblical rapture, the people of Mapleton, New York, are suddenly shaken to their core as many of their loved ones disappear into thin air. With roughly 140 million people actively missing — 2% of the world’s population — the world starts to question everyone and everything. Will people turn to cynicism, paranoia, and cult-like fanaticism, in order to survive? The eerie and thought-provoking series leaves viewers riveted, second-guessing theories from episode to episode.

Okay, I absolutely enjoyed the first season of The Leftovers after I’d heard so much good talk about it. The writing is smart and mysterious and these stories get really deep and emotional for these characters as we follow them through the aftermath of this rapture-like event. The series also has a slight religious tone to it that I really appreciate as a believer. We all have questions as to how all of this will infact go down and this interpretation gives Tom Perrotta’s view and it’s seriously thought-provoking and an interesting one. The people left behind in this small town have to pick up the pieces and continue on with their lives after their loved ones simply vanish. Three years later the cult-like Guilty Remnant show up and give the residents an added element of uneasiness and eeriness that they really didn’t need. So now everybody has to deal with their loss plus this mysterious group that wears all white and chain smokes like a chimney. Nasty habit by the way!

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With each of the ten episodes, the main characters get to tell their own stories (mostly the Garvey family) but the other characters get their moments to shine too. The viewer gets a glimpse of what their lives were like before their loved ones disappeared and how their lives all changed – mostly for the worse I might add. Some characters get extremely destructive while others continue questioning why it all happened and then there’s a few who end up joining the Guilty Remnant. There’s lying, cheating, rabid dogs, a big deer and even murder that goes on in this small town and with each instance, new questions are asked. This talented cast brings these interesting characters and their troubled lives to life so well on screen. So how does the first season end? With another tragedy and more lives lost.

The packaging comes with a nice slipcase. The front features the artwork you see up top and the back includes season one details, some images, and the impressive list of extras. There’s also a booklet inside that includes a list of the episodes with synopsis, original airdates, more images, and series credits. Both of the Blu-ray discs feature matching artwork. Inserting each disc, the menu screens were simple and easy to navigate. The picture and sound quality for this high-definition release were crisp and clear.

Bottom line is, The Leftovers: The Complete First Season was a truly brave, intense and thought-provoking watch that deals with the aftermath of what appears to be this rapture-like event or something similar to it. This is also the first Warner Bros. Television show ever to air on the HBO network that includes all 10 hour-long episodes. What Lindelof, Perrotta, Berg and Aubrey have created here is one of the best character driven series on television that will definitely get the viewers thinking and have conversations about if and when something like this is going to happen. For me, it brought up the discussion of the Bible and the book of Revelation and these kind of conversations always get interesting – if you’re into this kind of stuff. This 2-disc Blu-ray set releases on October 6th and is definitely worth a watch.

Distributor: Warner Bros. Home Entertainment

Run Time: 2 Discs / 10 Episodes / 558 Minutes

  1. Pilot
  2. Penguin One, Us Zero
  3. Two Boats and a Helicopter
  4. B.J. and the A.C
  5. Gladys
  6. Guest
  7. Solace for Tired Feet
  8. Cairo
  9. The Garveys at Their Best
  10. The Prodigal Son Returns

Rated: Not Rated

Blu-ray Video: 1080p High-Definition Widescreen (1.78:1) Region 1

Blu-ray Audio: DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 English / 2.0 French and Spanish

Subtitles: English, French and Spanish

Special Features: Good Stuff! This 2-disc Blu-ray set is loaded with some great extras that included everything from commentary to the making of the fascinating series. There’s even a featurette that focuses on the cult-like Guilty Remnant.

  • Pilot Audio Commentary
  • Making The Leftovers
  • I Remember: A Season One Conversation with Damon Lindelof and Tom Perrotta
  • Secrets of the Guilty Remnant
  • Beyond the Book: A Look Ahead at Season 2
  • Finale Audio Commentary
  • Digital HD Copy
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