Cast: Damon Wayans, Clayne Crawford, Keesha Sharp
Release Date: September 19, 2017
A Review By: Kevin Lovell
Disc Rating: 7/10
Roger Murtaugh (Damon Wayans) and Martin Riggs (Clayne Crawford) are back on the streets of L.A., in Warner Bros. Television’s adaptation of the classic buddy cop action-comedy. The series introduces these two polar opposites: Riggs a volatile former Navy SEAL-turned-detective out of El Paso, Texas with a tendency to dive into the line of fire following the tragic deaths of his wife and unborn son; and Murtaugh, a seasoned, by-the-book detective cautiously returning to the LAPD in the wake of a heart attack that nearly killed him. While the partnership seems doomed from the start, the dynamic is crazy enough that it just might work. The question remains… can the two of them work together to protect the crime-ridden streets of Los Angeles, or will Riggs get the two of them killed first?
Please Note: Warner Bros. Home Entertainment provided me with a free copy of the Blu-ray I reviewed in this Post. The opinions I share are my own.
Based on the massively popular film franchise of the same name, the first season of ‘Lethal Weapon’ (re)introduces us to new partners and the perfect odd couple, detectives Roger Murtaugh and Martin Riggs (portrayed on the series by Damon Wayans (TV’s My Wife and Kids) and Clayne Crawford (TV’s 24) respectively); one a family man who plays by the book and the other a recently widowed, loose cannon and ex-Navy SEAL with an apparent death wish who embraces every reckless opportunity he can, with his grief and alcoholism only adding extra fuel to the fire. Forced to work together, Roger and Martin soon find their polar opposites can also prove beneficial to each other and the duo soon begin to form a solid partnership; even if it may be one filled with constant bickering and daily insanity.
The debut season of the ‘Lethal Weapon’ television series wildly excels expectations to say the least and manages to offer a well constructed, brilliantly casted and just flat out enjoyable television series that not only retains the heart, humor and so many other notable elements of the film series (and actually does so remarkably well) but simultaneously manages to make these famous characters and their playground very much their own. Perhaps the most impressive aspect of accomplishing both of these feats is that the two mesh together beautifully and as opposed to clashing and causing a disruption in the show’s harmony it only tremendously improves the overall experience and forms into something truly special that always manages to hit the right marks and only becomes better throughout the course of the first season’s 18 episodes. Featuring Damon Wayans and Clayne Crawford portraying the infamous roles of LAPD detectives Roger Murtaugh and Martin Riggs on the television series and both do a surprisingly amazing job taking over the roles and offering plenty of familiar mannerisms and traits, while still making these important characters very much their own. I would strongly urge fellow fans of the film franchise and anyone who appreciates a well crafted police procedural with plenty of action, laughs and heart to spare to make a point of giving the ‘Lethal Weapon’ series a whirl when you have the opportunity to do so. It’s a remarkably well crafted and executed show that stays true to the film series its based upon it while also never hesitating to make certain it’s far from a carbon copy and very much its own beast.
Overall, the first season of ‘Lethal Weapon’ is a wonderfully pleasant surprise that defies all expectations and delivers a hilarious, heartfelt and of course action packed series that both pays homage to the famous film franchise of the same name with numerous nods and twists in the storyline that repeatedly express appreciation for the movies, while also allowing the series to become very much its own vehicle. With the spot-on casting choices of Damon Wayans and Clayne Crawford as Murtaugh and Riggs to further boost the clever writing and execution it all forms together into a ridiculously enjoyable new show that fits in beautifully with the police procedurals we all know and should also have no trouble whatsoever consistently slapping a grin on the face of fellow fans of the film franchise. ‘Lethal Weapon: The Complete First Season’ definitely comes highly recommended and fans of the series that have already had the pleasure and would love to revisit the first season will probably want to strongly consider picking up a copy of this 3-disc Blu-ray collection which should largely please with its solid high definition video and audio presentations in addition to a few fun bonus goodies.
The Blu-ray release of ‘Lethal Weapon: The Complete First Season’ features a full 1080p High Definition presentation utilizing the show’s original 1.78:1 Aspect Ratio on all of the debut season’s episodes. The video presentations look pretty fantastic as a whole and deliver sharp, detailed and smooth presentations on each and every included episode. They hold up quite well even during the frequent fast moving and darkly lit sequences, never causing anything occurring on screen to become negatively affected or rendered indiscernible along the way. Overall, these are more than competent high definition video presentations that should have little trouble satisfying the show’s fans.
The Blu-ray release features a lossless 5.1 channel DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack on all 18 Season One episodes. These lossless multichannel soundtracks deliver crisp, clean and aggressive audio presentations on every episode without any noticeable flaws to be found throughout. They consistently take advantage of all five available channels in order to fully immerse the viewer, sending no shortage of bullets, explosions, debris, crowd chatter and a great deal more regularly making its way throughout the various speakers, and never allowing any dialogue or additional auditory elements that may be occurring simultaneously to become distorted or rendered inaudible. Overall, these are fantastic 5.1 channel DTS-HD MA soundtracks that offer plenty of additional with fun with these clean and hard hitting audio presentations.
The Blu-ray release of ‘Lethal Weapon: The Complete First Season’ includes a few fun extras that fans of the series will likely appreciate. Included on the release is the ‘Extended (and Uncensored) Pilot’ (running 47 minutes in length, approximately a minute longer than the broadcast version), in addition to ‘Deleted Scene(s)’ from 10 of the season’s episodes, and a ‘Gag Reel’ (approximately 3 minutes). We are also treated to a Featurette: ‘Reloading Lethal Weapon’ (running approximately 16 minutes) which includes members of the cast and crew discussing the series.