The Vampire Diaries Season Five DVD Review

Our favorite Mystic Falls residents are back with more Delena drama, doppelgängers galore, and more Supernaturals than ever before as season five of the Vampire Diaries hits dvd. With wild twists, some jaw dropping transformations, and a new supernatural race with a diabolical agenda there's plenty of reasons that the body count is rising once more.

Elena (Dobrev) spent the summer getting sweaty with Damon (Somerhalder) while Stephen (Wesley) spent time drowning in an underwater safe, and no one even noticed him missing with his shadow self Silas (also Wesley) running about. With summer over, and college starting Elena moves into her dorm with her roomie Caroline (Accola). Bonnie (Graham) is still MIA because she's well dead and only Elena's younger brother and Bonnie's love interest Jeremy (McQueen) knows, and the girls find themselves with a surprise in the form of a new roommate. Before the beer bongs can be properly broken in tragedy strikes and draws the girls into a far reaching mad scientist mess that has ties to Damon and eventually the newest edition to the supernatural roster in the form of the Travelers. The Travelers are body jumping neanderthal witches who just so happen to want doppelgänger blood and to destroy the supernatural ever-after.

Meanwhile, after receiving the much sought after vampire cure Katherine is human once more. But the blessing, Katherine finds is more of a curse as she's plagued with aging at a rapid rate, while being hunted once again. As Katherine, Nina Dobrev delivers some of her best material. Many props need to be give to both Paul Wesley and Nina Dobrev for pulling double and sometimes more duty. The nuances between the different characters are amazing, not just subtle things like posture, or more noticeable ones like speech patterns, but even their voices are slightly different. The descend to death of Katherine Pierce is one of the highlights of the season because of both great writing as well as great acting. Katherine maybe the thorn in everyone's side, but she helped shaped them all, pushing them to be the complex characters they are and Dobrev really shines.

The writing for the season is really all over the place. When its good, its very good; its touching, its poignant, its shocking. What's not shocking at this point is the deaths, that aren't deaths because everyone comes back or the whole we can't be together because we're bad for each other, but I'm better with you story line. Luckily for the most part these moments are fleeting, drowned out in the impending other world destruction, and big bad rising story line.

There is a lot of soul searching this season, and further exploration of the characteristics that have come to define each of the individuals. Whether its Elena's kindness, Stefan's balance and compassion, Damon's selfishness and selflessness or Caroline's journey from bubblehead to caring individual, its these aspects that are so beautifully done that keeps fans begging for more.

The Blu-Ray is pretty flawless. It arrives on Blu-ray with a 1080p MPEG-4 AVC encoded image by WB. Both the intense dark visuals and bright colorful daylight ones look clean in high definition. The show is certainly well produced, and the flashback scenes with their heavily detailed sets look especially impressive.

The audio is 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio presentation is almost as good as the visual quality, which is a good thing since the dialogue is so crucial. Although there is plenty of loud action and whispered conversation, there is a great separation between channels, so no blaring noise, or reaching for the remote.

There aren't a ton of extras, but the ones included on both the DVD and Blu-Ray really do make this set a must own for fans.

2013 Comic Con Panel is easily a highlight of the set. Creator/showrunner Julie Plec, staff writer Caroline Dries, and the cast members Nina Dobrev, Paul Wesley, Ian Somerhalder, Candice Accola, and Kat Graham share in some comic-con fun with the audience and answer questions prior to the premiere of Season 5. There are no big reveals, but the playfulness between castmates makes it a fun watch.

I Know What You Did... in the Last 100 Episode is a short featurette celebration with the cast and crew over the huge milestone achieved of reaching the 100th episode.

To The Other Side and Back featurette delves into the mythology of the Veil, that other place where most of the characters depart to.

A Day in the Afterlife is a behind-the-scenes rundown of filming with Kat Graham taking viewers on a filming tour.

There are the normal Deleted Scenes are provided for seven episodes of the season.

Second Bite: Gag Reel is the standard goofed-up forgotten lines clip-show.

Although in the fifth season, the Vampire Diaries shows no signs of slowing, and remains one of the most popular shows on the CW. With stunning costumes, compelling writing and exceptional performances it remains to be a show not to be missed. Now is the perfect time to pick up the DVD. It gives those who missed out a chance to catch-up, and everyone else the perfect opportunity watch it again before the show comes back the the sixth season on October 2nd.


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