DVD Review: The Tribe (Series One, Part Two)

Director Chris Weitz (Twilight Saga: New Moon) must feel very original with his upcoming young adult novels. He scored a fat publishing deal for a trilogy about a world where all the adults are wiped out and teenagers find themselves in charge. Where does idea like that come from? How about New Zealand. For five seasons, this was the premise of The Tribe. A mysterious virus sweeps across the globe wiping out all the grown ups. What will the teens do? You can wait a few years for Weitz or watch the next 26 episodes on The Tribe: Series One, Part Two.

The kids of New Zealand have formed little groups in order to survive in the post-apocalypse. The tribes of teens vary from the hardcore punk Locos to the more sedate Mall Rats. New groups crop up including kids that farm and others that are hooked on being circus freaks. The key group for the series is the Mall Rats. They’re the more sensible of the tribes. Trouble is they’re also hormonally charged teenagers. The early episodes focus on the wedding of two of their members. This proves to be a major distraction. They don’t seem to recognize how much food theft has touched them. There has become a major barter culture between the tribes with the biggest deals involving canned goods and slaves. Human trafficking has become the newest threat to the weaker kids.

In the midst of the turmoil between all the kids comes a recurring role for what appears to be the original virus. Seems the bug wants to go after kids that seem mature for their age. Can these kids battle the virus using their high school educations? How much science did they get that can equal the CDC top brains? Is this going to be the fast end of the surviving kids? Well you know they aren’t going to die out since I already gave away that The Tribe lasted five seasons. Although there’s a chance the last four seasons were cockroaches surviving on the goo inside a Twinkie.

The Tribe: Series One, Part Two is extremely addictive TV. The show has a proper balance of a post-apocalyptic epic with a engrossing soap opera. The kids want to be loved and do stupid things cause they just felt like doing it. Nothing is completely predictable cause their kids without any adults to keep them in line. The show didn’t get much attention when it originally ran in the US on an Encore cable channel. Odds are high that you haven’t had The Tribe spoiled during a geek off. This is also why The Tribe is so easy to “borrow” when you’re a big shot movie director looking to sound so original.

The video is 1.78:1. The series was shot on video so it doesn’t have any visual wear and tear on the frame. The video brings out the scavenger culture. The audio is stereo. The levels are fine.

The Making Of (26:00) is an episode focused on how the show is put together. Get a chance to see the kids when they exist in a world with adults calling the shots.

The Tribe: Series One, Part Two explores further what would happen in a world with only teenagers. The answer so far is not too hopeful, but it makes for excitement.

Shout! Factory presents The Tribe: Series One, Part Two. Starring: Beth Allen, Dwayne Cameron and Ari Boyland. Boxset contents: 26 episodes on 4 DVDs. Released: June 12, 2012. Available at Amazon.com.

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