Main Menu Introduction
Menu Animation & Audio
|Year Of Production||2000|
|RSDL / Flipper||No/No||Cast & Crew|
|Region Coding||1,2,3,4,5,6||Directed By||
Beyond Home Entertainment
Keith Hamilton Cobb
Gordon Michael Woolvett
|Pan & Scan/Full Frame||Full Screen, not known whether Pan & Scan or Full Frame||English Dolby Digital 2.0 (448Kb/s)|
|Widescreen Aspect Ratio||None|
|Video Format||576i (PAL)|
|Original Aspect Ratio||Unknown||Miscellaneous|
|Annoying Product Placement||No|
|Action In or After Credits||No|
On this disc of Andromeda are the first two 'regular' episodes; "To Loose the Fateful Lightning" and "D Minus Zero".
The first of the two episodes is quite good and the second not too bad albeit with a few problems. The character bible for the show is obviously a little skimpy at this point and I found some of the characters a little inconsistent. The humour thankfully continues with some quite funny one-liners, though there are a couple of points where the characters take themselves a little too seriously for this type of show.
To Loose the Fateful Lightning:
I was going to try very hard and not do comparisons with other shows whilst reviewing Andromeda, but this one is just too much. Without revealing too much, any fan of the original Star Trek series will recognise half the storyline, and fans of the Mad Max movies will recognise the other half. There is just enough extra plot to make this a different story and make it worthwhile. While searching for spare parts for the somewhat depleted Starship Andromeda, the crew approach an old High Guard Station. What they find on board is not quite what they expected. During this episode, our intrepid engineer decides to make a 'human' body for the ship's personality, who usually appears as a hologram. Why she has to appear 'in the flesh' literally is not really explained but is appreciated. From here on, we are treated to her presence both live and on-screen which, when she is doing both in the same room is a little disconcerting.
D Minus Zero:
This episode combines a reasonable battle with an unknown enemy with a little character expansion. The Andromeda receives a 'code black' signal that appears to have come from another High Guard ship, but turns out to be an ambush. While battling for survival, the crew of the Andromeda come under pressure and some cracks start to appear. Captain Dylan is used to a trained and disciplined crew, the crew a somewhat more relaxed atmosphere. I hope as the writers gain experience with the characters that they gain some depth and consistency. I found the very last scene of this episode completely out of character. There is also a sniff of a long-term storyline here with an unknown antagonist.
The back cover blurbs continue to give away too much of the plot but at the same time are becoming more and more inaccurate - bizarre.
The transfers are presented in an aspect ratio of 1.33:1 and are not 16x9 enhanced.
Sharpness of the live footage is excellent while the computer generated footage is still a little lacking. Shadow detail remains good and there is no low level noise.
Colours are excellent in the live footage and pretty good for the computer generated footage. The silver of the ship was sometimes a little off.
There are no MPEG artefacts present nor are there any film to video artefacts present. The problem with the shimmering on horizontal lines remains. I actually spotted my first film artefact (a tiny white spot). Besides this, the film masters are perfect.
There are no subtitles and this is a single layered disc.
There is a single English Dolby Digital 2.0 soundtrack that appears to be surround encoded despite not being flagged as such.
Dialogue quality is very good as is the audio sync.
The music supports the script well and has a reasonable, though not great, soundstage.
The surrounds are being used and in these episodes we start to see some fly-bys and other effects, although not consistently. Sometimes a ship goes past with a sound effect and sometimes without.
The subwoofer made its presence felt on a few occasions. Even though the earth did not move, this is an improvement over the previous disc.
|Surround Channel Use|
NOTE: To view non-R4 releases, your equipment needs to be multi-zone compatible and usually also NTSC compatible.
Now that we are into the regular episodes, we are starting to get a feel for the show. I still think the show has promise, particularly once they have bedded down the characterisations.
The video quality is good
The audio is a reasonable surround-encoded effort
There are no extras.
|DVD||Skyworth 1050p progressive scan, using RGB output|
|Display||Sony 1252Q CRT Projector, 254cm custom built 1.0 gain screen. Calibrated with AVIA Guide To Home Theatre. This display device is 16x9 capable.|
|Audio Decoder||Built in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with AVIA Guide To Home Theatre.|
|Speakers||B&W DM305 (mains); CC3 (centre); S100 (surrounds); custom Adire Audio Tempest with Redgum plate amp (subwoofer)|