Tru Calling : The Complete Series
4th June 2005
Tru Davies is a college graduate about to start medical school. But when her internship at a local hospital falls through due to a lack of funding she is asked whether she'd be interested in a less exciting night position at the city morgue. Hardly excited at the prospect Tru accepts, after all it is a job and it is in the medial field. Still, on the plus side, at least these particular customers won't be complaining about the state of the food or shouting for a bedpan. However, that doesn't necessarily mean that all of the customers are planning on keeping quiet.
With a staff shortage on her first day at work Tru is thrown in at the deep end and left alone. Bored and sat along in a dimly lit office Tru starts to hear a strange voice coming from one of the cold storages. Deciding to investigate (like you would!) she wanders into the morgue hall and pulls open one of the draws containing the body of a recently murdered woman. Tru jumps back in shock when the corpse suddenly comes to life, turns to her and begs her for help. And with a flash of light Tru finds herself propelled back into time and the beginning of the day.
Tru discovers that she has the power to 're-live' the previous day and thus giving her the chance to change fate and save a life by figuring out the series of events that lead to the victim's death. Each episode sees Tru faced with a new opportunity to change the past, for those who died before their time, and also for her gambling younger brother Harrison and drug addicted older sister Meredith. But as Tru battles to balance her personal life with her unusual vocation, she uncovers not only the secrets of her mother's murder, but a whole web of disturbing family history.
- Putting Out Fires
- Brother's Keep
- Past Tense
- Star Crossed
- Morning After
- Murder In The Morgue
- The Longest Day
- Drop Dead Gorgeous
- Daddy's Girl
- The Getaway
- Two Pair
- Death Becomes Her
- Rear Window
- Two Weddings And A Funeral
- Perfect Storm
- In The Dark
- Last Good Day
- Twas The Night Before Christmas - Again
The picture is reasonable enough with a fair amount of detail and colour depth, although there are the usual problems with too much red saturation. The picture is slightly grainy at times and is a little too soft throughout, but being an NTSC to PAL conversion of a terrestrial television series from America, it was never going to be anything worth while writing home about. And as you'd expect for a television series, there are no problems with print damage whilst there were no discernable problems with either outlining or artifacting.
As a terrestrial television series it is hardly surprising to discover that the sound is presented as a simple 192 Kbps Dolby Digital 2.0 soundtrack. Never the less, it works well enough and the dialogue is crisp and clear in the front channels whilst the musical score is also handled well enough. It would have been nice to have had something more from the sound department, especially with America starting to embrace the digital age and using Dolby Digital 5.1 with their television broadcasts, but disc capacity is at a premium here plus I suspect budget restraints on the series prevented anything too spectacular occurring.
As the extras are spread across the six discs in the set, and because I was only sent the first disc in the set for review, it is very hard to come up with any complete opinion on the extras or menu layouts. However, from extras and menus which were available it all looks good and sounds like the extras are all worthy additions to the collection.
The main menu system is scored and introduced with some nice animation whilst the sub-menus are also scored with more music from the programme. The episodes are easily selectable plus there's there's the ever handy play all option included if you fancy an entire evenings worth of entertainment in one go.
Each disc is accompanied by a collection of Audio Commentaries and Deleted Scenes for a number of the episodes per disc. From what I have seen and heard from disc one, the deleted scenes are of rather poor picture quality and last in total for about two or three minutes. They are also available with an option audio commentary which while it does provide an explanation as to why the scene was deleted it is all rather too brief.
However, the audio commentaries with series creator Jon Harmon Feldman, producer Dawn Parouse and cast members Eliza Dushku and Shawn Reaves are quite enjoyable and entertaining. There's a fair amount of joking, but there's also plenty of information about the various locations and other cast members along the way. There can be a fair amount of silence, plus Feldman has to occasionally do a bit of prompting, but as everyone settles down and starts to enjoy what they are doing the information starts to flow fairly spontaneously.
Not owning a Sky box Tru Calling was an unknown entity to me and I wasn't really sure just what I was going to be watching. However, I was pleasantly surprised with the results and it all turns out to be a rather intriguing and thrilling drama. Reading into the background of the show you soon discover that it was brought to life by the creators of Roswell, Dawson's Creek and The Wonder Years. Armed with this information it's quite easy to see just where the majority of the shows influences came from. As a result Tru Calling manages to combine the action and sexiness of Alias, the suspense of 24 and a subtle hint of Roswell in one go.
However, don't get too excited and settled with this series as the box-set is suspiciously titled "The Complete Series". And so, as with many other promising television series from Twentieth Century Fox such as Firefly and the classic Family Guy, the short sighted Fox bosses have decided it's not attracting sufficient audiences and it has been cancelled just after season two started. This results in the troublesome question as to whether any plot twists were left dangling come episode twenty six.
Still, cancelled or not, it's a surprisingly addictive show, which is helped even more by the rather attractive presence of Eliza Dushkuit's, and it's definitely something worth while checking out. Given the amount of discs and value of the extras it's definitely a title worth checking out. Highly recommended.
- Commentaries by the Creator, Producer and Cast
- Twenty Three Deleted Scenes
- Four Featurettes
- Somebody Help Me Music Video By Full Blown Rose