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6 Degrees Entertainment

'Medium: The Complete Fifth Season'
(Patricia Arquette, Jake Weber, David Cubitt, Miguel Sandoval, et al / 6-Disc DVD / NR / 2009 / CBS - Paramount)

Overview: Allison Dubois (Arquette) is a strong-willed, devoted young wife and mother of three girls, who has gradually come to grips with her extraordinary ability to talk to dead people, see the future in her dreams and read people's thoughts. This season, Allison and her family's world is turned upside down after her abilities are publicly exposed, resulting in sweeping changes both professionally and personally.

DVD Verdict: MEDIUM has always been a rarity on television for its characters are very believable and real. Yes, Allison has dreams and that is the basis of the show. But foremost Allison is a wife and mother. She is not always perfect. She is human and tries her best to do good and juggle all these things. The show in no way uses the dreams as a gimmick. They are a part of Allison's life and they become real to the viewer. Her husband Joe is the perfect partner for her. He struggles often on how to be there for her as the dreams envelop her life but they have a true marriage based on love, friendship and acceptance. The three children are also very real. This is your average family that must deal with some added kicks in life. The daughters have picked up their mothers gift and life is often unpredictable.

But if you watch the show you know all this. The professional side of her life with the DA and the police department is just as believable. The highest kudos for the success of this show must go to the writers and the great ensemble cast. Every actor carries their load with great conviction. Led by the great Patricia Arquette this show for all its sordid and scary moments is based on heart. Her acting is so flawless here that you don't even realize she is doing it. Every emotion is real and every dilemma heartfelt. Allison Dubois becomes very real in her hands.

All series these days are released on DVD but MEDIUM is one that is a must have if you enjoy the show or its genre. The tension and continuity gets lost sometimes on tv with the commercials breaking in. To see it with no interruption adds to the drama and emotion immensely. Also, for all the different dreams she has there is a story line about her family and all the characters that has been a continuous ongoing drama since season one. Season five breaks the mold a little and has a 2 parter and a 3 parter. Tension runs strong as Allison is pursued by a killer who believes her dreams are signs from the devil and the show gets very very creative when Allison leaves the DA's office for a unique job opportunity. The story line is very creative and adds to the already deep drama.

The ending of the season is very dramatic with a heartwrenching conclusion that leaves a lot in the air as it provides the opportunity for the show to continue or end as no one really knew what was in the cards at that time. I won't give away the storyline but the last episodes of saeason five are among the best of the entire run of this series.

MEDIUM is television of the highest caliber and thanks to Patricia Arquette and crew the standards continue to remain very high. This is a very intense show filled with deep psychological drama and many scares. Highly recommended.

The season 5 set has a smattering of extra features that actually break away from the all too typical offerings of TV seasons these days. The one item in the extras that feels somewhat ordinary is the "making of" featurette which has all the typical talking heads from the cast, crew and creators as they smile at the camera between takes and talk about the concept which broke the 100 episode mark in this season. The second featurette "Apocalypse...Now?" discusses the biggest subplot of the season, its realization and how they decided to execute it. The final two featurettes give us face to face time with Patricia Arquette and Jake Weber before giving us a nice little profile of one of the child actors from the show. [BB] This is a Widescreen Presentation (1.85:1) enhanced for 16x9 TVs.

www.paramount.com/homeentertainment





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