Silicon Valley: The Complete Second Season (Blu-ray Review)

Silicon Valley Season 2Working in the IT industry myself I can’t tell you what a breath of fresh air it is to see people going through the same stress, trials and tribulations as myself in the industry, but presented in a comedic fashion unlike Batman v Superman (sorry could not help it with that jab).  I may not be involved directly per se in a tech startup, but I know how things work in corporate America and sometimes HBO’s hit comedy series Silicon Valley hits oh so close to home.  You can read all about my take on Season One in my 2014 Blu-ray review over here, but today we’re here to discuss everything Season Two, which is finally making its long awaited, anticipated Blu-ray release on April 19th.   What say you?  You ready?!  Like Lady Gaga, I was flippin’ born to review this one.  Here we go!

Silicon Valley Season 2


So not to beat a dead horse, but let’s go over some basics first before we jump right into all the events of Season Two.   Silicon Valley is an American comedy television series created by Mike Judge and a few others.  The series focuses on six young men who founded a startup company in…you guessed it… Silicon Valley, which for anybody that doesn’t know is in Northern California.  The series premiered on April 6, 2014, on HBO and consisted of only eight episodes.  Due to its overwhelming success HBO renewed the series for a second season, which premiered on April 12, 2015, and this time blessed us with ten episodes making it the greatest stay-at home date night in combination with Game of Thrones, which it followed (pretty much guaranteeing itself an audience).  The third season will premiere on April 24th this month with you guessed it again…Game of Thrones Season Six.

Now finally before we go on let’s recap the obvious.  Of course I’m talking about the need to reintroduce the major players…the cast…of the series.  Thomas Middleditch is our main protagonist Richard Hendricks, a Stanford University dropout and ex-coder at tech giant Hooli, who created the Pied Piper compression application, the reason we’re all here.  T. J. Miller, probably the most recognizable cast member from Deadpool, stars as Erlich Bachman, an arrogant entrepreneur who owns 10% of Pied Piper and more.  Josh Brener returns as Nelson “Big Head” Bighetti who hilariously rises pretty high within Hooli this year.  I’m not going to spoil it.  You’ll find out why.  Three more members of Richard’s troupe also return, Martin Starr as Bertram Gilfoyle, a LaVeyan Satanist programmer and Canadian illegal immigrant, Kumail Nanjiani as Dinesh Chugtai, a talented programmer originally from Karachi, Pakistan who is typically the victim of Gilfoyle’s embarrassing games and pranks, and my personal favorite, the very innocent looking Zach Woods as Donald “Jared” Dunn, an ex-employee of Hooli who quit the company (he probably regrets this now) in order to join the Pied Piper team as its CFO and business advisor.  The beautiful Amanda Crew is back as Monica Hall, an employee of Raviga Capital and assistant to both Peter Gregory, whom we will talk about down below, and later Laurie Bream (Suzanne Cryer).  Last but certainly not least, the charismatic leader of Hooli, Matt Ross as Gavin Belson, serves as our season’s main antogonist once again.

So now that we have all the trivial housekeeping accounted for there is one person’s name that I did not mention up above, but wanted to pay tribute here to in his very own paragraph.   He deserves that much at least in my opinion.   Im talking about the very sad and untimely death of Christopher Evan Welch during the filming of Season One.  He portrayed Peter Gregory, the billionaire founder and CEO of Raviga Capital as well a 5% equity owner of Pied Piper after his initial $200,000 investment in the guys.  After the fifth episode of Season One was completed, Welch died, but the character remained present off-screen for the remainder of the season.  Gregory later died in the Season Two premiere, providing us an unfortunate, but fortunate at the very same time segue into all that transpires within this season we’re all ceremoniously gathered here to talk about.

Season Two starts off with a bang literally hot of the runaway trail of success the Pied Piper guys experienced with their Tech Crunch victory at the end of Season One.  Multiple venture capital (VC) firms want to finance them and express interest, however, some are turned off by CEO Hendrick’s lack of perceived direction.  Bachman insists that this is a strategy to lower Pied Piper’s valuation and errantly responds to each offer by insulting each venture capital firm. One offer from the company End Frame is revealed to be a scam to steal trade secrets from Pied Piper developers.  That sucks, huh?   If that’s not enough, as I already revealed up above and should come as no surprise now, Peter Gregory dies while on vacation and is immediately replaced by Laurie Bream to run Raviga Capital.  Bream gives Richard the highest offer of all the VC firms: 20% equity at a $100 million valuation.  In secret, Monica urges the guys to decline the offer, calling it a runaway valuation that would dilute their potential for future financing.  Richard ends up countering Bream’s offer.  However, before the guys can really claim any victory whatsoever, Richard finds out at Peter Gregory’s funeral that Hooli is suing Pied Piper for copyright infringement, claiming that Richard developed Pied Piper’s compression algorithm on Hooli time using company equipment.   I told you up above, not everything is about tech startups, the corporate world can and will swallow you hole if you’re not careful.  Be wary at all times.

Because of this frivolous lawsuit and Bachman’s rude behavior I discussed up above it should come again as no surprise now that really no VC is going to want to work with the guys.  Even worse, how on Earth is Richard and gang going to be able to afford to fight this lawsuit not to mention the furthering evil ploys of Gavin Belson and the never ending tricks up his sleeve to ensure Hooli comes out on top of all this.  Remember me saying Big Head rises to the top?   Well there’s a very good reason for this all.   After all, how is Hooli going to prove they had this Pied Piper algorithm first.  Deception is very important, even in the corporate world.   Hark!  Who goes there?   Well it’s Russ Hanneman (Chris Diamantopoulos), potentially the guys’ savior.  Or is he their curse?   The fun in all of this is finding out by watching but of course.  I think I told you enough, don’t you think?   If all of this did not whet your appetite to give Season Two a watch, then I’m not doing my job as one of the world’s most prolific Blu-ray reviewers because after all I did love Batman v Superman (haha).

The hilariousness of it all doesn’t end here.   Oh no!  It literally only begins here.  Is the troublesome Russ Hanneman more than the guys bargained for?   You bet he is!  Will Hooli eventually stumble and falter in the public eye?  Will the firm that stole Pied Piper’s ideas up above reap any benefit for their dishonest practice?  Will the guys find love in their lives?   What happens to the trial?   Is there any redemption available at all for these down on their luck as of late Pied Piper guys?  Rest assured ladies and gentlemen, these questions and so many more not even thought of or addressed here will be answered in Season Two and trust me, it will end leaving you hungry for more.   Thankfully, as previously reported, Season Three ain’t far away.  Now how do things look and sound in this Blu-ray release?   Now you’re drinking the blu Kool-Aid.  Read on to find out…

Silicon Valley Season 2


Once again, things look really good here in Silicon Valley‘s second outing now on the Blu-ray format. I completely disagree with those who clamor that this is a show only worth owning on DVD.  I can’t wait for the eventual death of that hideous format.  We’re in the age of HD now.  Embrace it for all its beauty for crying out loud.

  • Encoding: AVC MPEG-4
  • Resolution: 1080p
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1
  • Clarity/Detail: Like in the first season on Blu-ray, detail is dominant and prominent throughout here in this Blu-presentation.  The textures, hair, stubble, computer graphics and even the energy drink logos all jump ripely right off the screen at you.  There’s no escaping how razor sharp this one looks.
  • Depth: Due to the utmost of clarity in this one, foreground figures literally pop off the screen with the utmost of three-dimensional qualities leaving the background like a deep dish pizza in terms of depth of field.  Monica looks great in this too as everything is literally lost in the background.  Haha.
  • Black Levels: The black levels are all deep and gorgeously inky throughout.
  • Color Reproduction: The colors are vivid and ferociously in-your-face bright.
  • Flesh Tones: The skin tones are all lifelike and natural.  Like in the first season, the pasty white skin of all the tech characters is completely authentic.  Haha.
  • Noise/Artifacts: I did not notice any noise or unwanted artifacts that would keep you from enjoying this bright, vivacious and ridiculously pristine presentation.

Silicon Valley Season 2


For a comedy, things are pretty much what you would expect and as a result are status quo in this Blu-ray presentation.

  • Audio Format(s): English 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio, French 5.1 DTS, Latin Spanish 2.0 DTS
  • Subtitles: English SDH, French, Latin, Spanish, Danish, Finnish, Norwegian, Swedish
  • Dynamics: The dynamics are well developed and placed here in Silicon Valley on Blu-ray.  From the hustle and bustle of endlessly pecking away on computer keyboards to crinkling and throwing away paper, everything is brought to life in this Blu-ray presentation with the utmost of authenticity and clarity just like you were really going through all the trials and tribulations of this very risky tech startup company.
  • Low Frequency Extension: You really only noticed the subwoofer pumping in moments where it’s deserving or necessary, but unfortunately there’s no “Hips Don’t Lie” like there was at the end of the first season’s finale.  It’s a comedy, folks.  Relax!
  • Surround Sound Presentation: Besides the LFE presentation, this is probably the only area I would have loved to have heard as BEEFIER.  You hear things in the rear speakers such as audience applause, score, ambience, etc., but it would be so much nicer if it was even more prominent.  Since I’m judging this based on it being a situational comedy, I’m being very generous here.  Other moments are great like when Hooli’s Nucleus does their UFC broadcast
  • Dialogue Reproduction: The dialog is VERY LOUD and clear throughout here.  Hallelujah!  If you have a problem with hearing the spoken word, then you might be deaf.  I’m just saying.  “He put his balls on the table?”  “Line them up nuts to butts.”  “I’m a 3-foot dick…”  You get the point.  The dialogue is what makes this show tick and you hear every second of it with the utmost of clarity.

Silicon Valley Season 2


Make no mistake about it, HBO Blu-ray sets are always packaged as the best of the best when it comes to television series releases on the 1080p HD home media format of choice.  In addition to the below Blu-ray extras that we’ll dissect in detail, you can always count on HBO to deliver you not only the iTunes Digital Copies of the entire series, but also the UltraViolet versions too.   How’s that for maximum bang for your buck?  I know!  It’s stupendous you’re probably saying to yourself, and you’re absolutely right!  Just for your knowledge, episodes 1-5 are found on Blu-ray disc #1 while 6-10 are on the second disc, but for now let’s take a closer look at the three main extras you’ll find in this two disc set.

  • Reality Bytes: The Art & Science Behind Silicon Valley (HD, 3:08) – This one kind of goes behind the scenes how they make the shows so grounded in reality as it relates to the tech world and even how the D2F formula really came about, LOL, including complex algorithms on middle-out compression, etc.
  • Deleted Scenes (HD) – Although not every episode has them, deleted scenes are available on both discs and are selectable either by the episode or via a play all selection.  The episodes where there are deleted scenes to be found are 1, 2, 5, 6, 8 and 9.
  • Audio Commentaries – There are a total of six audio commentaries found on both Blu-ray discs.  They are listed below.  
    • Episode 1 – Thomas Middleditch, Amanda Crew, Martin Starr, Mike Judge
    • Episode 2 – Thomas Middleditch, Suzanne Cryer, Kumail Nanjani, T.J. Miller, Mike Judge
    • Episode 3 – Thomas Middleditch,  Chris Diamantopoulos, Zach Woods, Alec Berg
    • Episode 8 – Thomas Middleditch, Chris Diamantopoulos, Zach Woods, Amanda Crew, Jimmy O. Yang, Alec Berg
    • Episode 9 – Matt McCoy, T.J. Miller, Josh Brener, Mike Judge
    • Episode 10 – Thomas Middleditch, MattMcCoy, Kumail Nanjani,Martin Starr, Alec Berg

Silicon Valley Season 2


So there you have it ladies and gentlemen.  In summary, I think I’ve gave you more than enough reasons to arm yourself with in the knowledge that HBO’s Silicon Valley The Complete Second Season is exactly what you’re looking for to spend your hard earned money on.   From a good time to be had with it all to a Blu-ray that knocks it out of Petco Park with all the technical mumbo jumbo, this is the Blu-ray 2-disc set you’re looking for this April.   Only one thing remains now between you and you’re dream of achieving utter happiness and eternal bliss.   You just need to click the pre-order link below to bring yourself one step closer to making these dreams of happiness an honest to God reality.  Come on.  It’s easy to do.  Everyone’s doing it.   Just click on the Amazon graphic below.  Move that mouse cursor and/or touch it.  Done deal!   Thanks for reading and ultimately your support too.



Silicon Valley Season 2


Owner/Writer/Reviewer/Editor, Dreamer, Producer, Agent of Love, Film Lover, Writer of Screenplays and a Devoted Apostle to all things Ford Mustangs (the real ones with V8's!). Some of my favorite films include FIGHT CLUB, MOULIN ROUGE, THE DARK KNIGHT, STAR WARS alongside television shows such as SEINFELD, 24, SANFORD & SON and even the often loathed in the geek community BIG BANG THEORY. Outside of my three lives I live I also enjoy spending time with my girlfriend and our three girls (of the furry kind).

  1. No Comments