A pair of DVDs get the spotlight this week, one giving the origin treatment to Marvel's clawed mutant and the other taking us back to the origins of Hasbro's robots in disguise.
"X-Men Origins: Wolverine" (Two-Disc Special Edition): We've already told you all about the film itself, so what does the DVD offer? Along with a variety of "Making Of" and behind-the-scenes featurettes (one features Stan Lee and Len Wein reflecting on the character's history), the two-disc DVD and Blu-Ray editions both feature an assortment of deleted and alternate scenes.
However, rather than simply providing another take on existing shots, some of the extra footage offers interesting spins on the existing material.
This week, we told you about the alternate scene in which Logan chooses to have his memory wiped while Victor Creed watches on, "humanized" by his counterpart's decision to erase his memories of their relationship. Also among the deleted scenes are a cameo by a young, white-haired mutant (Storm), as well as Sabretooth's confrontation with Blob. There's also the infamous "secret ending" that teases a potential trip to Japan in the sequel, as well as the Deadpool "I'm not dead" scene tacked onto the film after the credits.
The DVD and Blu-Ray also feature commentaries by director Gavin Hood and producer Lauren Shuler Donner, which include your standard insight into the making of the film, how long it took to get Blob into his makeup and some thoughts on the CGI effects used in the movie. Interesting stuff, all of it—but likely to appeal more to comics-savvy fans than the average viewer.
"X-Men Origins: Wolverine" hits shelves September 15.
"Transformers: Season Two, Volume One": When the second season of "Transformers" hit the airwaves in 1985, Hasbro already had a hit on their hands—both as a toy line and a cartoon. So it's no surprise that the aim of the second season was clearly set on expanding the characters' universe. Much moreso than in the first season, a host of new characters were introduced in the second season of the animated series—the first 28 episodes of which are presented on this collection.
Fans of the animated series should be pleased with this collection for a number of reasons: not only does it offer up the first batch of episodes in the order they were intended to be aired, but it also features the debut episodes of a few characters that rose to popularity later on (as well as some who live on only in the minds of hardcore fans). Kicking off with "Autobot Spike," the episode that transplants the brain of the Autobots' human friend into Autobot X, and a few episodes later introducing Nightbird (basically, a ninja robot), the second season is full of Transformers trivia fodder.
However, the collection features an impressive amount of memorable episodes, too. While there isn't a defined, over-arching storyline throughout the season, there are quite a few episodes that put the fan-favorite Dinobots front and center, as well as the new (at that point, at least) Insecticons—giving the impression that these two groups of characters were part of a concentrated push for the Transformers line.
Things also get a bit weird in the second season, as storylines involving time travel, magic and off-planet adventures pop up here and there, straying from the more grounded tone of the first season.
There aren't many special features to speak of, but in a collection this large and presented with what appears to be a real appreciation for the source material, it doesn't feel like the collection is lacking anything in that respect.
"Transformers: Season Two, Volume One" hits shelves September 15.