Alias-Season 3 (2001)

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Released 10-Jan-2005

Cover Art

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Adventure Main Menu Introduction
Main Menu Audio & Animation
Audio Commentary-Director And Cast - Episode 9: Conscious
Audio Commentary-Filmmakers - Episode 11: Full Disclosure
Audio Commentary-Filmmakers And Cast - Episode 15: Facade
Featurette-The Museum Of Television & Radio: Creating Characters
Featurette-The Animated Alias
Featurette-Behind The Scenes-Alias Up Close - Six Featurettes
Featurette-Burbank To Barcelona
Outtakes
Deleted Scenes
TV Spots-Monday Night Football Teaser, Michael & The Stanley Cup
Easter Egg
Rating Rated M
Year Of Production 2001
Running Time 901:47 (Case: 899)
RSDL / Flipper Dual Layered
Multi Disc Set (6)
Cast & Crew
Start Up Language Select Then Menu
Region Coding 2,4 Directed By Jeffrey Abrams
Jeffrey Abrams
Daniel Attias
Guy Norman Bee
Studio
Distributor

Walt Disney Studios Home Ent.
Starring Jennifer Garner
Ron Rifkin
Michael Vartan
Bradley Cooper
Victor Garber
Merrin Dungey
Melissa George
Carl Lumbly
Greg Grunberg
Kevin Weisman
David Anders
Lena Olin
Case ?
RPI $99.95 Music Jeffrey Abrams
Jeffrey Abrams
Michael Giacchino


Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame None English Dolby Digital 5.1 (448Kb/s)
French Dolby Digital 5.1 (384Kb/s)
Spanish Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
English Audio Commentary Dolby Digital 1.0 (96Kb/s)
Widescreen Aspect Ratio 1.78:1
16x9 Enhancement
16x9 Enhanced
Video Format 576i (PAL)
Original Aspect Ratio 1.78:1 Miscellaneous
Jacket Pictures No
Subtitles English
English for the Hearing Impaired
French
Spanish
Swedish
Norwegian
Danish
Finnish
Icelandic
Dutch
French Titling
Spanish Titling
French Audio Commentary
Spanish Audio Commentary
Swedish Audio Commentary
Norwegian Audio Commentary
Danish Audio Commentary
Finnish Audio Commentary
Icelandic Audio Commentary
Dutch Audio Commentary
Smoking Yes
Annoying Product Placement Yes, the whole hting is an ad for trendy things.
Action In or After Credits No

NOTE: The Profanity Filter is ON. Turn it off here.

Plot Synopsis

    Alias is like a very long game of Tomb Raider ... except Jennifer Garner is at best a C-cup. Seriously, think about it a little – the entire show is this skimpily clad girl running around shooting up bad guys in order to get one key that leads to another key that leads ... So what do you do with a show like this? Well, you grab your mates, a six pack, a bottle of Jack and you watch it all in one night, drinking along the way until the last two episodes are incoherent and you’re just laughing your a*** off.

    This third season of Alias picks up right where the last season left off, with our pouty and annoying heroine Sydney Bristow (the aforementioned C-cup, Jennifer Garner) waking up on a street with two years of her life missing. Her long-time CIA love, Michael Vaughn (Michael Vartan), is married to a good-looking blonde named Lauren Reid (Melissa George), who works for the NSC and whose Dad is a US Senator, and her own father Jonathan ‘Jack’ Bristow (Victor Garber) is in jail for collaborating with a known terrorist in order to find her over the last couple of years. Shortly thereafter, Sydney learns that her arch nemesis, former SD-6 head Arvin Sloane (Ron Rifkin) has been given a full pardon and is now a world humanitarian, and her former SD-6 partner Agent Dixon (Carl Lumbly) is now the head of the L.A. branch of the CIA. SD-6 and the Alliance have been replaced by an even nastier group of international terrorists known as the Covenant, and Milo Rimbaldi is still the centre of all this black bag shenanigans.

    In brief, Season 3 goes together like this:

Disc 1

1. The Two (41:12)

    Where has Sydney been? And how will she cope with all the changes in her life?

2. Succession (39:16)

    Will Sydney trade Sark for two CIA agents even if he may hold the key to her missing years?

3. Reunion (39:47)

    Sydney and Vaughn are back together as a team on the CIA. Can they stop Sark from sabotaging a satellite system?

4. A Missing Link (41:26)

    When Sydney is recognised by an infamous thief, she plays along to gain access to her lost past.

Disc 2

5. Repercussions (41:26)

    When Sloane is kidnapped by an infamous arms dealer, a new opportunity for the CIA arises.

6. The Nemesis (41:15)

    Francie’s double Allison is back. How will Sydney react? And how will Dixon?

7. Prelude (41:35)

    Lauren is getting closer to the truth behind Sydney’s missing years – what will she decide when she uncovers her secret?

8. Breaking Point (39:53)

    With Sydney in the hands of the NSC, it’s time for her friends to mount a rescue.

Disc 3

9. Conscious (41:34)

    To uncover her past, Sydney agrees to undergo an experimental drug therapy. Stars David Cronenberg in a magnificent performance as Dr. Brezzel.

10. Remnants (41:10)

    Sydney’s dream leads her to Will Tippin to uncover the truth behind her past.

11. Full Disclosure (41:33)

    It’s just Kendal and Sydney on a plane. What truths will be uncovered?

12. Crossings (41:25)

    When Sydney and Vaughn are captured in North Korea, Jack must enlist Irina’s help to save their daughter.

Disc 4

13. After Six (41:35)

    Sark enlists the aid of an insider to kill off various Covenant leaders to make a play for power himself. And Sydney and Vaughn are sent after the Doleac Agenda.

14. Blowback (41:29)

    Although the font in the menu makes this look suspiciously like Bloyback, it is in fact a ‘w’ not a ‘y’. Can Sydney and Vaughn retrieve a special bomb before the Covenant gets hold of it? And who are the mysterious two agents trying to stop them?

15. Facade (41:05)

    When master bomb maker Daniel Ryan (Ricky Jervais) threatens to detonate another bomb, Sydney must convince him that she is a Covenant agent to uncover the location of the device.

16. Taken (40:56)

    Is Sloane really the mole in the CIA? And how far will Dixon go to rescue his children from the Covenant?

Disc 5

17. The Frame (40:22)

    Sloane’s arms trader associate Bomani may hold the key to a Rimbaldi secret.

18. Unveiled (40:30)

    Sydney and Vaughn must stop a Covenant computer virus that is crippling systems around the world.

19. Hourglass (41:25)

    Will Jack let Sloane die as payback for what was done to him all those years ago?

20. Blood Ties (40:27)

    Sloane, Sydney and Jack join forces to find “the Passenger”, but the Covenant is close behind them with Vaughn in their custody.

Disc 6

21. Legacy (41:30)

    To find Sloane and Nadia, the CIA will have to enlist the aid of some undesirable characters. But Sark and the Covenant are closing in.

22. Resurrection (40:36)

    Will Vaughn get his revenge? Will Nadia join Sloane’s cause? And just what is in the safety deposit box?

    I’m sorry, I’ll just wipe the tears of laughter from my face. Okay then...

    This show is silly, but oh so watchable. True, half the cast are totally annoying, with the show’s heroine being a whining little thing that is still, all these years later, persistently jumping to the wrong conclusion and just doing plain old dumb things all the time. And her much sought after boy, Vaughn, is really kind of dull and boring, a sort of moping d***head that only gets moderately interesting when he’s angry and on a revenge trip. However, the bad guys really do make this show great, with Sloane just being one of the greatest (and best dressed) villains in TV history as of late, and British bad-boy Sark being likewise totally cool (my girlfriends all swoon, which I find absolutely hilarious). However, it’s the deliciously evil Melissa George that just makes this season. Sexy, sultry good-girl-gone-bad, she is all class.

    This is TV pitched squarely at the lowest common denominator. It’s silly, pointless, a lot like a video game, but ultimately highly amusing, in a laugh at sort of way. As dumb as this show is, it’s a hell of a lot of fun.

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Transfer Quality

Video

    Presented in its original aspect ratio of 1.78:1, 16x9 enhanced, this transfer is not so great.

    While colour saturation is for the most part fairly good, and definition is fairly clear, that’s where the good points start finishing up.

    Shadow detail leaves a lot to be desired in this transfer, with an annoying corresponding graininess that flickers on and off in low-lit scenes. This can be really distracting at times. For example, check out the last few minutes of Breaking Point and the scene there in the chopper. Horrific.

    There are no MPEG artefacts, but there is still some distracting aliasing going on, particularly on chrome edges with glinting light – the grilles of cars for example. Where lines are closely grouped in the background, these edges also tend to exhibit moire effect.

    There is the occasional fleck of dirt, but nothing major in the way of film artefacts.

    The subtitles are white with a grey/black border, clear, easy to read, and follow the dialogue reasonably closely.

    The dual-layer pause is in between the episodes.

Video Ratings Summary
Sharpness
Shadow Detail
Colour
Grain/Pixelization
Film-To-Video Artefacts
Film Artefacts
Overall

Audio

    By way of contrast to the mediocre picture, the English 5.1 Dolby Digital remix is quite good.

    The dialogue is clear and easy to hear, though I spotted a few audio sync issues in situations which would have required post-production ADR. These are source faults, not transfer faults.

    The surround sound is quite good, with plenty of directional cues. However, I felt the rears only really pick up with the music. Where the music is concerned, the range is also quite good, with rich, deep bass and clear treble.

    The subwoofer gets a good work out, and its use really adds to the ambience of the soundtrack.

    Audio is also available in Spanish and Italian 5.1 Dolby Digital. These alternate audio tracks are thinner and weaker, but generally acceptable.

Audio Ratings Summary
Dialogue
Audio Sync
Clicks/Pops/Dropouts
Surround Channel Use
Subwoofer
Overall

Extras

Menus

    All menus, including sub-menus, are presented in 1.78:1, 16x9 enhanced. The main menu and most of the other menus have a 2.0 Dolby Stereo track with themes from the show.

Booklet

    As far as I am aware, the original packaging includes a booklet – however, as I was not given the packaging to review I cannot tell you what this booklet contains.

Audio Commentaries

    All commentaries are presented in 2.0 Dolby Stereo. There are three commentaries for the following episodes:

Disc 5

The Museum of Television and Radio: Creating Characters (9:38)

    Presented in 1.33:1, non-16x9 enhanced, 2.0 Dolby Stereo, this is a short featurette looking at a seminar held at the Museum of Television and Radio attended by J. J. Abrams, Jennifer Garner, and Keri Russell at which the three discuss the creation of the characters for the show.

Easter Egg (1:03)

    Click on the eye in the bottom right corner of the special features menu to uncover an on-set interview with Jennifer Garner. Presented in 1.33:1, non-16x9 enhanced, 2.0 Dolby Stereo

Disc 6

Featurette - The Animated Alias (7:25)

    Presented in 1.33:1, non-16x9 enhanced, 2.0 Dolby Stereo, this is a Manga style animation that looks to document one of the adventures of Sydney during her missing years. Poor plotting and bad animation make for a fairly passable venture.

Featurette – Alias Up Close (56:09)

    Presented in 1.33:1, non-16x9 enhanced, 2.0 Dolby Stereo, this is a featurette split into six parts that you can also watch as one. They take an in-depth look into the various facets of making Alias.

Burbank to Barcelona (9:33)

    Presented in 1.33:1, non-16x9 enhanced, 2.0 Dolby Stereo, this looks at how the set design crew and FX people make L.A. look like various parts of the world.

Blooper Reel (7:28)

    Presented in 1.33:1, non-16x9 enhanced, 2.0 Dolby Stereo, this is a collection of on set stuff ups and jokes. Some are quite funny.

Deleted Scenes

    There are 7 deleted scenes, presented in 1.78:1, letterbox, non-16x9 enhanced, 2.0 Dolby Stereo:

Team Alias

    Presented in 1.33:1, non-16x9 enhanced, 2.0 Dolby Stereo, these are a couple of promo ads that ran through sports season in the US:

R4 vs R1

NOTE: To view non-R4 releases, your equipment needs to be multi-zone compatible and usually also NTSC compatible.

    The R1 release of this set includes:

    Otherwise both are largely identical. The R4 release gets an Italian 5.1 audio track plus a few more subtitle options instead.

    I understand that the R1 release has a slightly better picture quality in terms of less graininess. If someone could confirm this, I would appreciate it.

    Otherwise, choose with your wallet or your language barrier.

Summary

    Alias – Season 3 is truly brain-dead fun. Turn it on, pour yourself a long glass of hard liquor and prepare to laugh.

    Video is fairly mediocre, with definite grain issues.

    The sound is extremely good by contrast.

    There are several extras, but I think we are coming up light on previous seasons.

Ratings (out of 5)

Video
Audio
Extras
Plot
Overall

© Edward McKenzie (I am Jack's raging bio...)
Friday, April 15, 2005
Review Equipment
DVDPanasonic DVD-RV31A-S, using S-Video output
DisplayBeko 28" (16x9). This display device is 16x9 capable.
Audio DecoderBuilt in to amplifier/receiver.
AmplificationMarantz SR7000
SpeakersEnergy - Front, Rear, Centre & Subwoofer

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Comments (Add)
Alias Biggest Fan Commentary on R1 - Steveo
Maybe a trip to an alcoholics anonymous meeting is a requirement - Anonymous REPLY POSTED
Am I crazy, or are the R1 v R4 comparisons getting really lazy? - Uncanny Antman
You're not crazy... - Anonymous
RE You're not crazy - Stimpy (da, what's a bio Ren?) REPLY POSTED
Fair enough... - Uncanny Antman
Why the spray? - pellicule
What, me paranoid? - Uncanny Antman
twilight of the alia - pellicule