DVD Reviews: Bitten, Rogue & Welcome to Sweden



Summer is a good time to catch up on TV shows that might have somehow missed being on your DVR record all list. The harddrive can only hold so many shows that you swear you’ll watch when you have free time. Bitten: The Complete Second Season, Rogue: The Complete Second Season and Welcome to Sweden: The Complete First Season are three shows that you can enjoy when it’s just too damn humid outside.

Bitten: The Complete Second Season is SyFy’s tale of werewolves with serious relationship issues. The series gives us the charming female werewolf named Elena (Desperately Seeking Santa‘s Laura Vandervoort). She lives a dual life in two different countries. In Canada she has a human boyfriend. But in America, she’s part of a werewolf pack with her old lover who is the guy who bit her and turned her into a hairy beast. It’s border awkwardness. The season opens up with a massive power struggle. Jeremy Danvers must hunt down and kill Malcolm Danvers in order to maintain control of the pack. What they don’t count on is a Coven of witches that also wants to find Malcolm. There’s an all out battle between these two supernatural enemies. Elena gets taken hostage by a third group. She’s in serious trouble. A majority of the show is about the human element of those that get hairy when the full moon comes out. The 10 episodes keep up the tension with various groups struggling for power. This is a fine viewing for those who miss the creatures of the night element of True Blood, but aren’t fans of vampires.

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Rogue: The Complete Second Season is something you might have missed on the cable box since the series runs on DirectTV’s Audience Network. Grace Travis (Mission Impossible II‘s Thandie Newton) as an undercover agent who sometimes forgets her purpose. The first season put her into a position with a criminal empire in Oakland. Season two changes things up a bit. She’s no longer on the police force. She’s graduated to the FBI. However this gig is supposed to have her merely handling undercover agents. All is going fine until one agent vanishes. This means that Grace must assume a new identity to get involved in a San Francisco operation. Things get complicated as she investigates the target while tracking down the whereabouts of the missing agent. The 10 episodes crank up the intrigue. Newton does a killer job playing the agent who finds herself deep cover again. She heightens the risk when it appears her cover is about to get blown. The bonus features include short pieces on casting, set tours, the actors, the characters, the stories and the FBI Taskforce. For those who don’t have the mini-sat dish in the yard, Rogue on DVD is a fine way to absorb the action without fearing that a downpour will ruin your summer night viewing.

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Welcome to Sweden: The Complete First Season is a rare joint production between America and Sweden. The series about an American money manager in that country could have easily just devolved into a series of jokes about clogs, Abba and Ikea. But luckily Greg Poehler isn’t just another showbiz sibling inspired by a movie he saw 10 years ago. He really did fly to Sweden to be with the Swedish love of his life. He’s basically playing himself in the show which allows his comic character to have a bit of heart on the screen. He arrives with excitement of seeing his amazing blond girlfriend in her natural environment. The comedy is cute as Swedish culture gets explored. They could have easily put this together to look like a reality show since the humor is natural instead overly timed. Lena Olin (The Unbearable Lightness of Being) brings a lightness to her motherly character. The show isn’t just about the colorful characters of Sweden. Will Ferrell, Aubrey Plaza, Amy Poehler (Greg’s sister) and Malin Åkerman make guest appearances. Patrick Duffy and Illeana Douglas arrive as Greg’s parents. Gene Simmons also visits Sweden to get Greg to manage his money once more. Nobody wants Greg to stay in the bright yellow and blue wonderland that is Sweden. It’s a cheery sitcom from a country that’s known for rather bleak flicks about Death playing Chess.

All three shows are coming back with their next season. The second season of Welcome to Sweden begins July 19 on NBC. Rogue just began fresh episodes on DirectTV. You can catch up on the last season on the DVD sets and be ready for more on the nights when the thunderstorms dominate the sky.

The video is 1.78:1 anamorphic on all the shows. The audio on all includes 5.1 Surround Sound and 2.0 Dolby Digital mixes. There’s also English subtitles. This comes in handy for the Swedish translations.

Bonus features are only included on Rogue.

Entertainment One presents Bitten: The Complete Second Season. Starring: Laura Vandervoort, Greyston Holt, Greg Bryk & Paul Greene. Boxset Contents: 10 episodes on 3 DVDs. Released: July 7, 2015.

Entertainment One presents The Bold Ones: The Senator – The Complete Series. Starring: Thandie Newton, Cole Hauser, Sarah Jeffery & Ian Hart. Boxset Contents: 10 episodes on 3 DVDs. Released: May 19, 2015.

Entertainment One presents Welcome to Sweden: The Complete First Season. Starring: Greg Poehler, Josephine Bornebusch, Lena Olin & Claes Månsson. Boxset Contents: 10 episodes on 2 DVDs. Released: May 19, 2015.

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