Monday, May 27, 2013

TV on DVD Review: Suits - Season 2

Stars: 5 out of 5
Pros: Compelling acting and storytelling draw you in
Cons: Different focus from last season might be hard at first
The Bottom Line:
A new direction
With still strong characters that
Pull you into show

"Nervous?"  "I'd Be Lying if I Said No."  "Well, I Wouldn't Want You to Lie."

Of the two shows that the USA Network debuted in 2011, Suits was by far my favorite.  I couldn’t wit for season two to start, and I enjoyed it just as much as season one, even if the focus was different.

The show revolves around the New York law firm Pearson and Hardman.  Specially, we follow Harvey Specter (Gabriel Macht), one of the high powered partners in the firm and his young associate Mike Ross (Patrick J. Adams).  Just one catch.  Mike never went to Harvard Law, the law school that everyone who works at the firm attends.  In fact, he never went to law school at all.

As the season opens, Mike and Harvey are worried that Jessica Pearson (Gina Torres) has discovered their secret.  But that quickly becomes a back burner issue when Daniel Hardman (David Costabile) returns to the firm.  Honestly, I had wondered about the Hardman in the name since we never met him in season one.  Suddenly, our characters are involved in a power struggle for the very firm they all profess to love.  Caught in the cross fire are Harvey’s secretary Donna (Sarah Rafferty) who finds a damaging piece of evidence, paralegal Rachel (Meghan Markle), and Louis (Rick Hoffman), who still really wants to be made a full partner in the firm.

Season one was very much case of the week with some on going stories.  That flew out the window here.  Yes, there are some cases that only last one episode, but almost everything seems to center around the power struggle for the very heart and soul of Pearson and Hardman.  While our heroes might gain a victory here or there, it usually seems like they are fighting an uphill battle against an adversary who knows what their every move will be, probably because he does because he has worked with them before.  It definitely gives the show a different feel and even a different focus.  We are more focused on Harvey than on Mike like in season one.

Despite the high stakes of the season, there is still time for witty banter.  Mike and Harvey are fun together, letting movie quotes fly.  But the real star in the one liner category is Donna.  It’s not only the words she says, but the delightful way she delivers them.  She is a scene stealer, and wisely they upped the number of scenes she’s in.

Of course, there are other things going on, like Mike’s grandmother’s declining health and Rachel’s attempts to get into Harvard to become a lawyer herself.  Before the season is over, we even get to meet her father.

And Mike and Rachel?  They’re still on again off again with one roadblock after another in their path.  Will they ever figure things out?

Earlier, I praised Sarah Rafferty’s delivery as Donna, but the entire cast is very strong.  I’m also going to single out Louis because the character is so slimey.  Rick Hoffman does a great job of bringing him to life while still making us care about him.  And the show must be tiring to act in because so many of the scenes are very intense.  It makes for very compelling watching, and I find myself looking forward to each new episode.

So obviously, if you’ve missed these sixteen episodes, this four disc set is a great way to catch up.  The set features all the episodes in their native widescreen and full surround. As you’d expect from a recent show, they look and sound great.  Looking for extras?  You get the almost standard deleted scenes and gag reel here.

Season two of Suits is a wild ride.  With how they left things, I can’t wait to see where we go from here.

Season 2 Episodes:
1. She Knows
2. The Choice
3. Meet the New Boss
4. Discovery
5. Break Point
6. All In
7. Sucker Punch
8. Rewind
9. Asterisk
10. High Noon
11. Blind-sided
12. Blood in the Water
13. Zane vs. Zane
14. He's Back
15. Normandy
16. War

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