THE DEAD ZONE: THE COMPLETE FIFTH SEASON.
Wow. Who would’ve thought that my favorite Stephen King story (and movie!) had the potential to be converted into a hit show, and last for 6 seasons! Well, here we are, and on the cusp of the premiere of Season Six, Season Five makes its way onto DVD.
For those who don’t know the basic story of The Dead Zone, here’s a recap. Anthony Michael Hall plays Johnny Smith, a former school teacher that several years ago suffered a horrible car accident which put him in a coma for 6 years. When he finally awakens, his fiancé is married to another man, his son doesn’t know who he is, and he is left with an odd-gift. With one touch, Johnny Smith can see your future. And even your past. Using his “gifts”, he helps his former fiancés husband, Sheriff Walt Bannerman (Chris Bruno) solve cases and helps prevent the outcome of possible misfortunes. It’s both his blessing and his curse.
He’s also seen the inevitable apocalyptic future caused by future President and current Senator hopeful Greg Stillson (played by The Boondock Saint’s Sean Patrick Flanery) and is doing everything in his power to prevent that future from ever becoming a reality.
season.) Among my favorite episodes is “Independence Day” directed by actor Chris Bruno. Johnny and his best friend Bruce are on a road trip for the July 4thWith that said, Season Five is made up of 11 episodes, and while not all of them are excellent, a few do rank as among the best the series has ever seen. (Quite a rarity for any show in it’s 5th weekend when Johnny has a vision of Bruce in a terrible car accident. Taking the wheel from then on in doesn’t change the vision. Once they’re stuck in bumper to bumper traffic, Johnny’s vision expands to seeing several of the motorists around him all dying later that afternoon. The remainder of the episode has Johnny making choices in an attempt to alter the future he keeps seeing, and this particular episode hits us with a little twist toward the ending half, which I loved.
With such serious material though, the show does offer some really funny moments. In particular, episode 6 “Lotto Fever” is one of the funniest of the series as Johnny is held captive by Boyd, a former mailman who won the lotto and then lost it all. He’s convinced it’s all Johnny’s fault. “Articles Of Faith” deals with Johnny trying to get to the bottom of a murder hate-crime. And even the Season opener, “Forbidden Fruit” is note-worthy, because it co-stars Laura Harris (The Faculty, Severance) as Miranda, Greg Stillson’s wife-to-be. (Ironically enough, both Laura Harris and Sean Patrick Flanery played a couple in the Christopher Walken flick ‘Suicide Kings’)
Overall, Season Five did what every other season of The Dead Zone has managed to do to me. It’s left me craving for more!
Special Features: On top of the usual commentary tracks, there are two featurettes included in this DVD box set release. One titled “The Other Side Of The Camera” which explores the directorial debuts of stars Chris Bruno and John L. Adams. And speaking of John L. Adams, the other featurette lets us follow him around for one full work day on The Dead Zone. Also included are several deleted scenes. The Dead Zone as a series so far has had an incredible run and this DVD set is proof of a successful Season Five. –Robg.
Buy it on Amazon.com!