Brothers & Sisters - The Complete First Season DVD Cover Art
SRP $59.99 1.78:1(16:9) DOLBY DIGITAL 5.1 BUENA VISTA

Most new dramas don't make it on the network, being cancelled after very few episodes in some cases. "BROTHERS AND SISTERS" is that rare exception, that after the first horrible two episodes, gets drastically better and continues to improve with each episode.  Tom Skerritt appears briefly as the head of Ojai foods, a produce distribution company he began and runs. While his children have continued to join in running the company as they grow older, none are ready for his sudden death(in the first episode).  In heavy-handed soap opera style, internal conflicts revolving around infidelity, homosexuality and more are fleshed out in ensuing episodes. The series, created by a talented playwright, has its share of great dialogue, coinciding with mediocre attempts at characters having epiphanies. Sally Field proves she can still hold her own against any other actor and even so-so material, but, of course it's when the writing is great that Ms. Field really shines. Calista Flockhart reveals much greater depth as an actress here than she was ever allowed in "ALLY McBeal," and she's actually worth watching the show for alone!  It's to the network's credit that they proved a show can be successfully retooled and improved upon if given the care it needs.  "BROTHERS AND SISTERS" turns from crap into something quite remarkable within only three episodes.  By the end of the first season, viewers will be very impatient waiting for the new season, and the storyline that they've grown addicted to.

BUENA VISTA has provided the correct 1.78:1 aspect ratio with 16:9 enhancement.  Colors are solid and detail is typically impressive. However, it's disappointing to find compression artifacts appearing sporadically throughout.

BUENA VISTA has provided a Dolby Digital 5.1 mix.  There is a good deal of separation in the front soundstage. Surrounds kick in occasionally and when they do, it's an engaging mix. Dynamic range is impressive and dialogue is always intelligible. It's not one of the more lively mixes available, lacking the oomph and presence of a "CSI-like" show, but it's adequate.

BUENA VISTA has provided some decent extras. There are commentaries for four of the episodes, an alternate "2nd episode" provided in its entirety and deleted scenes and more.