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Wilfred: Season 2 (Blu-ray Review)

wilfred season 2 whysoblu thumbWilfred is a series that has only gotten stronger as it has continued.  I was happy to enjoy the first season on a weekly basis, merely for the surreal type of comedy it was presenting (a man and a man in a dog suit have adventures), but did not see much more in it, until the first season reached its end.  The second season was much more confident in what was being presented and benefited greatly because of it.  Now, with the third season about to begin airing on FX, the complete second season has arrived on Blu-ray, with a few bonuses to keep you further entertained.  Continue on to learn more about this Blu-ray package.

Series: 

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Season 2 of Wilfred picks up on a bit of a strange note, as the first season ended on a bit of a cliffhanger and this season picks up by deliberately throwing you off of that plot point and presenting a surreal situation.  Fortunately, it fits the central idea of the show.  The last season began with Ryan (Elijah Wood) being introduced as a troubled man and former lawyer who attempted to commit suicide, but failed.  This notion was then supplanted by a new neighbor in his life, Jenna (Fiona Gubelmann), who asks him to look after her dog Wilfred.  The strange thing is, Ryan does not see a dog, he sees a large Australian man (Jason Gann) in a dog suit.

This season eventually settles back into that same groove, with a few new additions.  Ryan is still dealing with Wilfred and the nature of his existence in his life, but Ryan also now has more responsibilities.  His sister, Kristen (Dorian Brown) is pregnant and very controlling, which causes some issues for Ryan.  He also, more importantly, has a new job, which leads to interacting with his new boss, Jeremy (Steven Weber), a co-worker (Rob Riggle), and a love interest, Amanda (Allison Mack).  Wilfred, of course, is not one to sit out on these new developments, which leads to more adventures involving Ryan learning a thing or two, based on Wilfred’s weird version of self-help teachings.

This Blu-ray set contains the entire season on 2 discs:

Disc 1:

1. “Progress”
2. “Letting Go”
3. “Dignity”
4. “Now”
5. “Control”
6. “Avoidance”

Disc 2:

7. “Truth”
8. “Service”
9. “Honesty”
10. “Questions”
11. “Resentment”
12. “Secrets”

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The main emphasis of this show is comedy of course and Wilfred is certainly one of the weirder shows on TV right now.  It is easy to see why this is on FX as opposed to Fox, since it just is not for everyone.  Some of the episodes are just way too focused on presenting a strange concept pushed to its fullest.  That said, the balance of maintaining weirdness and comedy is held together by the effective duo that is Elijah Wood and Jason Gann.  The two have great chemistry and while I have never seen the original Australian TV series (which also starred Jason Gann), I like how these two characters function together and are great foils for each other.

At the same time, Wilfred’s world expansion was a great benefit to the show, given the reoccurring characters.  Gubelmann and Brown are good enough as the women already in Ryan’s life.  Having Allison Mack on board for many episodes this season is a way for the show to provide such a warm presence (and I say this as a person who never watched Smallville, but really enjoyed her energy on this show).  Rob Riggle and Steven Weber are fun as well, but Chris Klein’s expanded role as Jenna’s boyfriend is quite welcome, as it’s the only thing Klein seems to know how to do best – play a sincere doofus.  One-off appearances by guests such as Robin Williams, Mary Steenburgen, and Dwight Yoakam are very welcome as well.

One aspect I really want to emphasize is how well the dark comedy of this series moves into dramatic territory effectively, even if it only occurs in few instances.  Elijah Wood is doing much better work for the series than he seems to be given credit for and it really makes the show work overall.  It could be a soulless show that purely relies on stoner humor, but Wilfred has more on its mind than just that.  This does not take away from the fact that the show is quite funny, but having Wilfred resonate in other ways is a nice thing to take away from the series.

I enjoyed the first season well enough as a weird experiment, but Season 2 had a lot more going for it.  The comedy is still there, but the characters are more refined, the show has a better idea of what it’s going for (how to balance the weird and the pathos), and it is overall just fun to watch.  It is not quite up there with Louie, in terms of the best that FX has to offer (let alone all of TV, because I love Louie), but Wilfred is easily one of the more enjoyable comedies that I look forward to coming back on during the summer.

 Video: 

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For being such a bizarre show, Wilfred cleans up pretty nicely on Blu-ray.  The 1080p AVC-encoded transfers for each of the episodes all look pretty great and while only so many episodes attempt to be a bit flashy, they all have a good enough look to them, as far as single-cam comedies go.  As a result of the transfer, the various textures and colors all work well on Blu-ray, while managing to show off the surreal aesthetic applied to certain episodes.  It is not a dramatic shift between all the episodes, but it is enough to be noticed and it looks good for this Blu-ray release.

Audio: 

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The audio presentation is certainly above average here as well.  With Wilfred being a show that is mostly dialogue driven, with some comedic scoring peppered in throughout, the lossless DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 soundtrack does proper justice for this Blu-ray.  Everything sounds clear and properly mixed in regards to characters talking and various background noises.  Given that the show is fairly low-budget, it makes it somewhat impressive that it comes out as good as it does.

Extras: 

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It is unfortunate that the Blu-ray does not have more to offer in the special features department, as I feel like a lot could be learned in terms of overall intent of this show.  Hearing the thoughts of James Gann and Elijah Wood as to how they feel about the nature of Wilfred would have been cool to hear, let alone commentaries on some of the episodes.

Features Include:

Stay Exclusive Short – A three minute skit that is enjoyable enough.

Deleted Scenes – Disc 1 has a couple deleted scenes from three episodes; Disc 2 has one deleted scene.

Blooper Reel – Pretty self-explanatory

News at Noon with Jenna – Context from the show will make this clip make more sense.

Wilfred/Ryan Mash-Up – Here the characters say each others names!

Summary: 

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Wilfred may not be a good dog, but Wilfred is a good show.  It is a buddy comedy of the unusual sort, benefited by great chemistry between the leads.  This second season was more confident than the first and I look forward to the next.  The Blu-ray is pretty solid.  The show looks great and sounds quite good, though it is lacking in the extras department.  Regardless, Wilfred is a show worth checking out, if one needs a weird little comedy to pass the time.

Wilfred Season 2 is now available on Blu-ray.  Order Your Copy Here:

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Aaron is a writer/reviewer for WhySoBlu.com.  Follow him on Twitter @AaronsPS3.
He also co-hosts a podcast,
Out Now with Aaron and Abe, available via iTunes or at HHWLOD.com.

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Writer/Reviewer, Film Lover, Podcaster, Gamer, Comic Reader, Disc Golfer & a Lefty. There are too many films, TV, books, etc. for me to list as favorites, but I can assure that the amount film knowledge within my noggin is ridiculous, though I am always open to learning more. You can follow me on Twitter @AaronsPS4, see what else I am up to at TheCodeIsZeek.com & check out my podcast, Out Now with Aaron and Abe, on iTunes.

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