Judge Joel Pearce is a psychic alien from the future that talks to God.
4 out-of-this-world favorites.
When I reviewed Beyond the Ordinary's sister set, TV Sets: Crime and Punishment, I came away pleasantly surprised. My joy came not from Paramount's intentions for the set, but rather for the fascinating overview it gave of the cop genre. Thanks to a strangely eclectic group of shows, Beyond the Ordinary has given me no such pleasure. Like the other set, it includes four television pilots ranging from the 1960s to the present decade:
• Star Trek: The Original
• Joan of Arcadia
• The 4400 (2004)
• Medium (2005)
The decision to put these four television shows into a single disc is completely ridiculous. There's one classic sci-fi space opera, one alien conspiracy show, one Christian-friendly family drama, and a heavy-handed attempt to combine CSI with the occult. This is not an attempt to attack any of the shows individually, but it's hard to imagine any one viewer that will be drawn to all four shows.
Of course, the collection is really just an attempt for Paramount to get customers to shell out for some season box sets. They didn't need to try to hold the four together thematically, and they only need any viewer to really like one of the shows. My big concern, though, is that they actually want $15 for what should be a free promo disc.
As expected, the transfer of all four episodes are quite strong. All three newer shows are delivered in anamorphic widescreen, and look quite good. As I mentioned earlier, this is the most recent master of Star Trek as well, though doesn't seem to have the new effects as seen on the Blu-Ray disc. Still, it looks pretty good. The same can be said for the sound, which ranges from stereo to 5.1 surround. There are no special features on the disc.
Should you pick Beyond the Ordinary up? I would say no, unless you are really curious about all four shows and are picky about your television. Otherwise, there are much more efficient and cheap ways to investigate these shows. Stay away.
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