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6 Degrees Entertainment

'Survivors: Complete Seasons One & Two'
(Max Beesley, Zoe Tapper, Robyn Addison, Julie Graham, Anthony Flanagan, et al / 5-Disc DVD / NR / (2009) 2010 / BBC Video)

Overview: A plague of global proportions. Anarchy in the streets. The collapse of government and the rule of law--perhaps even the end of civilization itself!--followed by the rise of tyranny and vigilantism. There's heavy stuff happening in Survivors, a British sci-fi drama offered here with all 12 episodes from its first two (and so far only) seasons on five discs.

DVD: For me to call this series the best show today, is a lot. I watch too much TV and expect a lot out of television shows. Survivors is one of the best shows I've ever seen (barring Firefly). It is smart, the actors are excellent, the story is at once human, horrible, and thrilling.

The first few episodes when the virus sweeps through England and everyone is dying were a bit rocky - but you have to start somewhere. Around the middle of the first season, when the group consisting of seven people were forming as a sort of family - even though they were strangers to each other, Survivors begins to shine. The brilliance of this series is how these people are very different from each other, but somehow manage to hold on to civility in the face of incredible inhumanity, which is very real and quite frightening as you watch it unfold.

Each character holds his or her own in this series, something one rarely sees on television today. Abby is the matriarch - a very kind, maternal woman before the virus, becomes a very strong, central character who holds this ragtag group together and to a level of humanity others cannot seem to do. Tom is the strong, silent mystery man who holds himself separate, but as the story progresses becomes more and more the other half of Abby. We learn he is a murderer and doesn't have the moral balance that Abby has, but the two are almost a perfect complement to each other regarding this family.

Greg starts out kind of wimpy, but under Abby and the family's influence blossoms as a man of great character and intelligence. This "family" is the focus of Survivors as they deal with the aftermath of almost complete annihilation of society as we know it. We see one group trying to establish some sort of government, but the flaws are outstanding. We see another who enslaves people to try to jump start an industrial society again. We see groups of people without hope, food, decent water, shelter, and most of all, direction. In the middle of this chaos is Abby's "family."

I really hope this show goes on for a very long time, and I hope people will start watching it to continue its longevity. Too many fantastic shows are canceled before their time and this show is too good to end. I highly recommend this one to all of my friends and family - and I'm actually considering buying this new box-set for a dear friend of mine who wil love it ... as this one's mine, all mine! As for those that still need convincing, watch it on TV! I know not everybody gets BBC America to watch it here in the US, but it is one you won't be disappointed with. Much, much better than anything offered on American television today. [KF] This is a Full Screen Presentation (1.78:1) enhanced for 16x9 TVs and comes with the Special Features of:

Easter Egg
A New World
The Making of Survivors
Character Profiles
FX Featurette