Ponderance

(May 2003 - March 2007.) Tama's thoughts on the blogosphere, podcasting, popular culture, digital media and citizen journalism posted from a laptop computer somewhere in Perth's isolated, miniature, urban jungle ...

Frack This! Battlestar Galactica Region 4 Release Disappoints!

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Battlestar Galactica: Season I DVD (Region 4 ) - Menu
Originally uploaded by Tama Leaver.
I arrived home today expectantly, knowing that my Australian (Region 4) DVD set of the new Battlestar Galactica season one awaited me. I've been a huge fan of this series so far and given that Australian TV has been so amazingly disappointing recently, one BSG episode with dinner some nights would be the ideal distraction. Knowing the precedent that had been set with Australia getting the Buffy DVDs long before the US, I fully expected that Universal would be following suit and releasing the same version as the US season one set, re-coded for region 4. Just to be clear, here's what DVD Answers in the US lists as extras for the US edition:
* Mini-Series Commentary with Director Michael Rymer and Exec Producers David Eick and Ron Moore
* Pilot Commentary with Director Michael Rymer and Exec Producers David Eick and Ronald D. Moore
* "Bastille Day" Commentary with Executive Producers David Eick and Ronald D. Moore
*"Act of Contrition" Commentary with Executive Producers David Eick and Ronald D. Moore
* "You Can't Go Home Again" Commentary with Executive Producers David Eick and Ronald D. Moore
* "Tigh Me Up, Tigh Me Down" Commentary with Executive Producer Ronald D. Moore
* "The Hand of God" Commentary with Executive Producer Ronald D. Moore
* "Colonial Day" Commentary with Executive Producer Ronald D. Moore
* "Kobol's Last Gleaming: Part 1" Commentary with Executive Producer Ronald D. Moore
* "Kobol's Last Gleaming: Part 2" Commentary with Executive Producer Ronald D. Moore
* Selection of Deleted Scenes
* Behind the Scenes Featurette
* Battlestar Galactica Series Lowdown
* Series of Battlestar Galactica Sketches and Art
* 1 of 3 Collectible DVD Exclusive Trading Cards
And here's what's included in the Australian Region 4 version:
* Selection of Deleted Scenes
That's right only deleted scenes. No commentaries. No featurettes. Certainly no mini-series (although that I can forgive since it has been for sale recently as a standalone DVD). That was pretty disappointing. No, it was very disappointing to have a set with so few extras, for one obvious reason: in six months or maybe longer (although I doubt it), Australia will no doubt see a new Battlestar Galatica season with 'Special Extras Edition' or some such bloody thing which has the extras that should have been released now! To some extent, I can blame myself. While EzyDVD didn't have extras listed when I pre-ordered, that didn't deter me because they rarely do have full listings. It probably should have deterred me that a week ago I noticed that "exclusive deleted scenes" were the only selling point mentioned other than the episodes. Now, all that aside, allow me three more complaints. Firstly, the new ratings logos from the Office of Film and Literature Classification; these large and garish ratings advisories are huge and, more to the point, in colours that will never, ever, blend into the design of half-decent DVD art. Check out both the DVD cover itself, and the actual discs. As you can see, this classification advice ruins the artwork completely. Secondly, while I can enjoy inventive slipcase design, it makes no sense at all to layer your discs in such a way that you can't get discs two or four without removing one or three respectively. This isn't clever design, it's just bloody annoying. Finally, if you're going to release a half-baked set, at least put some effort into some menu-art that doesn't look like it was photoshopped by a mentally-challenged mongoose! These menus are so unimaginative and unappealing that they would look bad even if they'd been made at the same time as the original series.

In a nutshell: not happy. My suggestion to my fellow region 4 purchasers: wait for the next release or, even better, buy the region 1 version.

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