Directed by Various
Distributed by Universal Studios
This writer didn’t have much hope for “Grimm”, the supernatural police procedural that debuted in late 2011. At first glance it appeared to be a cut-rate cash-in on both the tried ‘n true “monster hunter” subgenre and Hollywood’s recent fascination with fairy tale properties (many of which are still heading down the pike). Imagine my surprise then when I discovered the show was a well-made, well-acted offering which, while flawed, showed lots of promise. If you haven’t yet given “Grimm” a chance, do be sure to check out Season One on either Blu-ray or DVD (perhaps after reading my review here). For those of you already familiar with “Grimm” and curious as to whether or not its second season stacks up well against its first, read on…
When we last left Detective Nick Burkhardt (Giuntoli), his girlfriend, Juliette (Tulloch), had just been hospitalized after an attack of the supernatural variety and he had just discovered that his long thought deceased mother (Mastrantonio) was very much alive and kicking (literally). These two incidents set in motion the events of the second season, which finds poor Juliette suffering from memory loss and Nick running afoul of The Royals, a secretive supernatural family that may be responsible for the death of Nick’s monster-hunting aunt in the previous season. Of course, in between these two story threads are numerous one-offs with any number of cool creatures for our poor hero to tackle (this is, after all, still a monster-of-the-week show at heart).
As with its previous season, “Grimm” continues to be a solidly enjoyable show, chock-full of nifty monsters and a neat mythology. Most everything has improved across the board this time ‘round as well. The actors seem more comfortable with the characters they’re portraying, the writing seems a bit more mature (and considerably darker at times, as with the episodes “Bad Moon Rising” or “To Protect and Serve Man”, for example), and the visual effects work appears to have a healthier budget, even though that damned morphing effect that illustrates the change from human to creature is still more annoying than not.
That’s not to say there still isn’t room for improvement. Along with the cheesy morphing effect, there seems to be a bit less variety in the creature designs this season. And while the writing is mostly sharper, Season Two is still plagued by some overwrought exposition and hammy subplots (Juliette’s amnesia and the love triangle that results from it reach soap opera levels at times). Still, for all its flaws, “Grimm” is a consistently fun and inventive show which deserves a look from genre lovers and monster enthusiasts of all ages. If you dug Season One, you’re bound to love Season Two.
Universal has done right by this show again with its Blu-ray release, giving it a beautiful presentation and a solid set of bonus features for fans to sift through. The image is just gorgeous, boasting beautiful colors, solid blacks, and loads of detail. The audio is immersive and quite punchy, providing a near-cinematic experience at times.
And then, the special features: We have deleted scenes culled from several episodes throughout Season Two; an extended version of the episode “Over My Dead Body” which features twelve additional minutes as well as several bits of unfinished visual effects (honestly, just stick with the aired version); a five-minute gag reel which is humorous enough; a ten-minute featurette which takes a look at the show’s ever-deepening mythology; two brief montages (one featuring the various creatures and transformations from throughout Season Two, the other focusing on the more amusing moments from fan fave character Monroe); a collection of four brief webisodes centered on Monroe, Rosalee, and Bud; and finally, the coolest item – a feature which allows you to peruse an encyclopedia of sorts concerning the various monsters from “Grimm”, featuring illustrations, brief descriptions, and video clips of each creature. Overall, it’s a pretty great set of extras.
With this being the second season of the show, this writer should imagine that you’ve already made up your mind as to whether or not you’re going to continue watching subsequent seasons. If you do decide to give the superior Season Two a shot, here’s hoping you enjoy!
Now bring on Season Three already!
Exclusive HD Content:
3 1/2 out of 5
3 1/2 out of 5