GUIDES – RELEASES – BLU-RAY – INVASION (SEASON TWO)
Studio: Warner Archive Collection
Street Date: 11/18/14
Closed Captioning: Yes
Media Quantity: 2
Disc Configuration: Blu-ray
Product Language: English
Original Soundtrack Language: English
Audio Format: DTS HD-Master Audio 2.0
Aspect Ratio: Widescreen (16×9)
Sound Quality: English
Episodes: Happy New Year, Earthlings, Alienated, Salvage, Beneath, Bloodlines, Depths, Satisfaction, Darkest, Before The Dawn, Cornered, True Colors, The Fix, Runaways, War, Complications, The Hunt, Intervention, Summit, Endgame
Synopsis: Young Justice: Invasion finds our heroes five years into the future – and a lot can change in five years, as our super heroes are about to find out. First, there’s some new residents to be found at Mount Justice: new team leader Nightwing, Wondergirl, Blue Beetle, Batgirl, Bumblebee and Beast Boy. And Young Justice will need all the help it can get as an alien presence has infiltrated Earth, while certain members of the Justice League are forced to stand trial at the criminal hearing off-world. Watch as The Reach, spearheaded by the quick-talking Ambassador and backed by the muscle of Black Beetle, manipulates a trusting public while maintaining its shadowy maneuvering with The Light. This is a grand 20-episode adventure as the risks have never been greater and the conflicts never so far-reaching – and the epic finale will shatter everything you know!
Young Justice: Invasion Blu-ray Review
By James Harvey
And with that, the final twenty episodes of Young Justice are now available on Blu-ray. A fantastic series that really captured some of the best aspects of the DC Comics Universe, the quality of Young Justice never truly wavered as it hurtled to the finale. Since this review is focused on the Blu-ray release, comments on the show itself will be brief.
This collection features the final twenty episodes of Young Justice, which fell under the “Invasion” banner, a season that was understandably controversial among fans right up to the final moments. While the initial controversy to the season was the time jump, that eventually became a non-issue as the story grew and evolved. While the time-jump was still an issue with many, the fact that the show was squeezing at least 26 episodes worth of plot into 20 was becoming a problem. This resulted in some episodes feeling rushed and characters sidelined, leading toward a finale that didn’t completely hit as hard as it should. Everything was resolved, save for a few key plotlines, but it felt like too much happened too quickly. Despite that, it ended on the right note – “business as usual.”
At the end of the it all, I still see Young Justice as a show about the original core team – Aqualad, Artemis, Kid Flash, Miss Martian, Robin, and Superboy. Even with the changes, at its core, this show still remains focused on those six players (with Robin/Nightwing a definite anchor to everything going on). It may not seem like it, as there are times when barely any of these characters are seen during the course of an episode, but these six hold the show together even with the rather expansive team growth this season. Superboy vanishes for a huge chunk of episodes, for example, to emphasize the importance of a few new characters introduced this season. New developments pop up, costumes and names change, some retire, some die, but – in the end – this show still remains about that fantastic core group of young heroes.
But man, that very last scene? While it’s not technically a cliffhanger, I would’ve love to see where the show went with it…!
Personally, I enjoyed the first season of Young Justice more than the second season, but this was still a great run of episodes and a true testament to the great creative team behind the series. The characters are just as developed and layered, the writing and directing sharp, and the developments usually jaw-dropping. The show is just as riveting, and the twists still surprising. Young Justice: Invasion definitely didn’t unfold as many predicted, and the show grew in such size and scope, but it still remained true to its initial premise. Things just got turned a bit on their heads and, boy, how it plays out? Well, let’s just say I’m thankful I no longer have to wait weeks or months between episodes anymore.
Moving onto the actual Blu-ray, courtesy of Warner Archive, it’s another quality release under the manufacture-on-demand label. The packaging is top-notch, with heavy stock used for the cover insert, the disc themselves looking tip-top. The package design echoes the look of the previous DVD releases and the show itself, and looks pretty nifty. But … what about the disc content?
The audio and video are good, but not great. I found the video suffered from a few blemishes here and there, particularly some distracting color-banding. There was also some shimmering when it came to certain flesh tones, making it look like the image was kind of staticy within just that particular tone, while the rest of the image looked fine. The audio is solid. Nothing demo worthy, but it gets the job done and it sounds fantastic. The quality is good, though a little flawed – the same of which could be said of the bonus content, actually.
The sole featurette, running just over 16 minutes, is comprised of promotional interviews conducted near the end of the show’s first season. The interviews with Greg Weisman and Brandon Vietti included seem to be longer versions of those released by the DC Nation/Cartoon Network Facebook and YouTube page around the time of DC Nation’s debut. Weisman’s interview in particular mentions the forthcoming block and its affect on the series. While it’s slightly disappointing the featurette contains repurposed content, it’s still nice to see in context of viewing what’s being teased. Weisman, in the interview, talks about how the first ten episode inform the second ten, and vice-versa, and that’s so apparent upon revisiting this season. Vietti also get a few good nods about the complexities of putting the show together, and even describes the interesting through process behind the show’s costume designs.
The commentaries are entertaining to listen to, and provide a handful of nice behind-the-scenes snippets, but are more casual and laid back. The atmosphere is that of four friends just kicking around, watching some great television, and generally speaking about the experience and commenting on the on-screen action. A few neat tidbits drop here and there, including some cool anecdotes about the final episode, along with discussion on the difficulties in putting the second season together with just twenty episodes. Definitely worth a listen.
Overall, for Young Justice fans, this is your chance to complete your Blu-ray collection. And, honestly, it’s a no-brainer. Fans of the great DC Animated Series should definitely pick this up. The show looks fantastic and, despite being somewhat underwhelming, the bonus material is a nice touch. Warner Archive should be applauded for including bonus content, something that Warner Bros. Home Entertainment seems to have all but given up on for their animated titles over the last couple years. It’s another win for Warner Archive, and another completed series worth adding to your collection. Support Warner Archive, support Young Justice, and pick up this excellent Blu-ray release. Highly Recommended.
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