Life on the road is a lonely life and this is coming from someone who’s only lived it in the comfort of his own living room, and through interactions with truckers a time or two. Some of them have families and some of them just fly by the seat of their pants and live from city to city. Those with families usually feel the stress more than those without because not only are they lonely, but they know there are a bunch of lonely people back home. Truckers without families feel the stress too because they’ll always miss out on that little piece of normalcy of being married and having kids. When all that is below your tires is a foot or two of ice then the stress level is upped considerably for everyone.
Ice Road Truckers is a reality series that takes viewers and puts them in the passenger seat of big-rig trucks as drivers such as Rick, Alex, and Jay make deliveries through the snowy terrains of Canada. They work together to keep diamond mines a thing of the present and the future, and there is nothing keeping them from certain death except for the ice they ride upon. It is insane to think without doubt that the two feet of ice can’t crack or melt or cause them to slip and slide right into the trees or mountainsides. But through the cold and the fear and the long nights, six brave truckers risk their lives in order to do the job they were born to do.
This is not a series for everyone because let’s face it: it’s a series about guys driving big rigs from one place to another. It sounds rather simple and contrite, but it’s true because that is honestly what it is all about. There’s more to it, but breaking it down is easy as can be when you see guys get their haul from one spot and have to take it all the way to its destination. One added sense of danger is the terrain that they travel on and the horrible conditions they must drive through. Ice and snow stain their windshields making visibility extremely hard and when the storms build up, almost impossible. Underneath their tires is not a layer of ice covering the asphalt or concrete. No, that ice is the only layer there is covering what is sure to be a watery grave if it were to give way. Those conditions make this series interesting enough for everyone to want to watch, but they won’t because of the assumptions they make of what it is about.
Season three is one that doesn’t seem to take off nearly as fast as the first two seasons and begins on a much slower and non-exciting turn. You’ll see that there is a lot of mentoring and teaching this season as some of the veterans try to give tips and hints to the newer drivers so they know how to not only do the job right but keep themselves safe. Because of a change in venue for a few drivers (Alex and Hugh), there are even veterans that need to learn the ropes because different locations mean different ways of doing things. You’ll also meet Lisa this season who aims to be the first woman to be a major heavy hauler player in the trucking game. She’s not doing a bad job at it either so her dream may just come true.
One of the cool changes this season that helps keep things a little spiced up is that camera crews go away from the drivers at times to teach viewers at home a thing or two. Follow along as you learn how to patch a tire on the ice, how to avoid skidding, learning what it’s like in an avalanche, and many other situations that aren’t nearly as easy as they may seem. The more detail you get here makes you appreciate the work these truckers do even more. Season three of Ice Road Truckers keeps us abreast on all of our favorite drivers as well as some new ones. There are also great tips to learn here that may help us all (especially you Northerners) when the cold weather and ice comes our way.
Deadliest Ice Road
Turn And Burn
Busted Parts & Breakdowns
Race For The Finish
The episodes are shown in 1.33:1 Full Screen format and they look just as good as they did during the season. Everything looks great and there were no problems in the transfer to DVD. And maybe its good production work or just awesome camera work, but some of the visuals are simply breathtaking so pay close attention to everything.
The episodes are heard in Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround Sound and also come through with no problems. Every bit of dialogue can be heard loud and clear along with the brakes pumping and the ice cracking.
Additional Footage – Lots of extra footage is shown here that is fun to check out because it is just as if you’re watching another full episode. There are some specific moments with the different drivers but also a couple cool scenes dealing with frontier life and the bitter cold. (29:10)
It’s far from the best season of Ice Road Truckers, but it’s still managing to keep my attention enough to make me want to see what happens in season four. Some of the changes caused for a bit of a slow start in the early episodes, but things really got going after that and kept it fun. Let’s not forget the new tips and tricks the camera crew shows throughout different episodes keeping it all fresh and stopping any chance of it getting stale. The special features are not much at all, but it’s not like I expected anything more then what is there. If you’re a fan then you’ll want to pick this up. Newcomers should check out a few episodes on television or maybe grab the first season set to get acquainted with the series because it isn’t for everyone. But for those that love it…MOVE ‘EM OUT!
A&E Home Video presents Ice Road Truckers: The Complete Season Three. Created by: Thom Beers. Starring: Thom Beers (Narrator), Various. Running time: 611 minutes on 4 discs. Rating: PG. Released on DVD: December 15, 2009. Available at Amazon.com
Tags: A&E, documentary