C.S.I.: Crime Scene Investigation - 2nd Season
Paramount Home Entertainment -
2001 - 1005
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CSI: Crime Scene Investigation has been a hit since it first graced television screens in 2000. It has been so successful in fact that it not only continues to do well in the ratings itself, but has spawned a viable spin-off in 2002 (C.S.I.: Miami) and a video game in 2003. Often both shows garner top ten ratings the same week, proving the staying power of the television crime drama. Las Vegas Police Departmentï¿½s elite Crime Scene Investigation unit, headed by the quirky but brilliant Gil Grissom (William L. Petersen), are always called in when the pieces to a death donï¿½t seem to fit. Armed with some of the most cutting-edge forensic technology available, and a multi-faceted and highly skilled team, the team at CSI always gets their answer.
Grissom investigates the scene of a major accident.
ï¿½ Episode 1: "Burked"
Grissom and crew are called in after high roller Tony Braun, a known drug addict and the son of a Las Vegas Mogul, is found dead in his house by a gardener. Since drug paraphernalia is discovered near his body and it is also determined that he had recently inhaled heroin, the cause of death is at first thought to be an overdose. But further examination of the corpse reveals that Braun had been restrained at some point with duct tape, leading Grissom to believe that the victim was forced to ingest lethal amounts of heroin and, perhaps, other drugs.
ï¿½ Episode 2: "Chaos Theory"
The entire CSI team investigates a disappearance at a local university. A young woman vanished, seemingly off the face of the earth. Forensics leads them to possible suspects, and possible suspects all have probable motives, but nothing seems to pan out. This leads our team to discuss the "Chaos Theory." When combined, many seemingly-innocuous events may have a deadly outcome. And closure is not always within reach.
ï¿½ Episode 3: "Overload"
Grissom investigates a possible suicide at a high-profile construction site. Against the wishes of the Sheriff, Grissom pushes to get at the truth of the matter-he thinks the suicide was actually a homicide, and uses theories on electrocution to look for his killer. Meanwhile, Nick and Catherine take on a case with little more than angora fibers to follow. A teenage boy dies while in session with his female psychologist, and traces of angora on his underwear make them believe the psychologist may be practicing very unconventional methods of "therapy."
ï¿½ Episode 4: "Bully for You"
The team tackles two cases: a school bully is fatally shot in a high-school bathroom,
and they must determine the identity of a very badly decomposed corpse found by
ï¿½ Episode 5: "Scuba Doobie Doo"
Grissom, Sara and Warrick are called on to investigate an abandoned, blood-splattered apartment and Nick and Catherine must examine a dead scuba diver lodged in a tree. The team members are suspicious when the former tenant of the bloody apartment claims that his missing girlfriend is visiting her parents -- and the parents say she never showed up. Meanwhile, Nick and Catherine are called to the site of a large fire and are confronted with the scuba diver found dead in the top of a tree near Lake Mead. Is it a murder or an urban legend turned fact?
ï¿½ Episode 6: "Alter Boys"
A young man is discovered burying a body that has been shot three times, but Grissom isn't convinced the guy is the killer---despite a wealth of evidence to the contrary; a woman is found dead in a health spa locker room without obvious evidence of foul play, but Catherine and Nick suspect murder.
ï¿½ Episode 7: "Caged"
A book restorer at a historical society is discovered dead, apparently from natural causes, in a metal cage (a temperature and humidity controlled room) that is used to protect rare books---but Grissom and Nick suspect she was murdered and their only possible witness: an autistic co-worker. Catherine and Sara handle the fatal case of car vs. train when a woman is killed when her SUV is struck by a train at a railroad crossing, which may not have been accidental. Warrick digs into some residential burglaries.
ï¿½ Episode 8: "Slaves of Las Vegas"
A young woman's naked corpse is found dead in a park in a playground sandbox,
but she was definitely murdered elsewhere. Whip marks and liquid latex on the body
lead Grissom, Catherine and Nick to a fetish club and the underworld of sadomasochistic
sex. Sara and Warrick handle the case of a man shot and robbed outside check cashing
store. It might be a robbery, but the CSI suspect an inside job smacking of insurance
fraud and theft.
ï¿½ Episode 9: "And Then There Were None"
Grissom and his team investigate a casino heist during which innocent victims were shot, while Catherine and Sara are called to the scene of a murder in a remote part of the desert. The evidence found at both crime scenes -- the crowded local casino and the isolated desert convenience store where a clerk was murdered -- has the CSI team drawing a correlation between the two crimes.
ï¿½ Episode 10: "Ellie"
Grissom has to give a lecture on preserving crime scenes at an out-of-town convention and Catherine is off to Reno for the evening, so he makes Warrick acting supervisor. The night begins routinely enough with the murder outside of a casino. The dead man was a con artist, who had run off with some tourists' money only to get shot and killed in the parking lot. Things heat up quickly when it's discovered that the dead man was part of a drug ring. He was also scheduled to fly to Baja with Capt. Brass's estranged daughter, Ellie, who turns out to be quite a spitfire---and does everything she can to humiliate her father. With his daughter as the prime suspect, Brass takes himself off the investigation professionally, but not personally. Meanwhile, the physical evidence in the case leads Sara to investigate a high-end counterfeit operation after the money found on the victim turns out to be bogus.
ï¿½ Episode 11: "Organ Grinder"
The CSI team is called in when a famous real estate entrepreneur is found dead in a hotel elevator. When the body of Bob Fairmont, the real estate developer, is found, the team discovers that the crime scene has been tampered with and that the victim has been re-dressed. After tracing the cause of death to a lethal poison, the team is shocked to discover that Fairmont's organs have already been removed and donated, making the case a bit more difficult to solve.
ï¿½ Episode 12: "You've Got Male"
Grissom and Sara are called to the crime scene when two murder victims are found
hidden in pipes at a construction site in the middle of an alfalfa field. Their
investigation of the construction site murder reveals that the victims were sisters
and the relationship of one of the sisters to a former prison inmate is a cause
for suspicion -- especially when his presence is traced to the scene of the crime.
Catherine and Nick investigate an ostensible hunting accident, and begin to doubt
seriously that the body found in the woods was the victim of any accident.
ï¿½ Episode 13: "Identity Crisis"
Grissom and his team investigate the strangely theatrical crime scene of another victim left by serial killer Paul Millander. After discovering that all of his victims were born in the same month as Grissom, Gil realizes that Millander could be after him next!
ï¿½ Episode 14: "The Finger"
When a man withdraws one million dollars cash from his bank, and he's got blood on his hands, he draws attention from the police, and soon Catherine ends up an unwitting participant in a kidnapping gone awry in which the only lead to the victim is a severed finger. Catherine is ordered by a kidnapper to accompany a man who is to deliver $1 million in ransom to him or else he will kill the man's mistress. And ... Sara goes on a date.
ï¿½ Episode 15: "Burden of Proof"
Grissom investigates the murder of a Las Vegas photographer whose remains were dumped at a nearby body farm where CSIs routinely study corpses, and his findings reveal that the man was apparently shot to death even though there are no bullet fragments in the body. Also, Grissom's leadership is questioned by some members of his staff.
ï¿½ Episode 16: "Primum Non Nocere"
The death of a very unpopular amateur hockey player---who perishes in the middle of a game---propels this intriguing episode. When Terry Rivers barrels into the opposing team's goalie, a fight breaks out and Terry ends up at the bottom of a huge pile of bodies. After the players are separated, he is found dead...with a deep, bloody gash across his neck. Grissom, Catherine and Sara are called in to investigate. Across town, Warrick and Nick look into the apparent drug-related death of a sax player at a casino. While working on the case, Warrick finds himself drawn to a rising young singer who worked with the dead musician.
ï¿½ Episode 17: "Felonious Monk"
Grissom investigates the murders of four monks who were shot point blank while chanting in a Buddhist temple; Catherine reopens a cold case in which her best friend was murdered, after the man convicted of the crime claims he's innocent shortly before he dies.
ï¿½ Episode 18: "Chasing the Bus"
Grissom and the entire crew investigate a deadly tour-bus accident in this change-of-pace episode. A bus carrying 23 passengers from Los Angeles to Las Vegas crashes less than 40 miles from its destination, killing nine people. Before he dies, the driver recalls that, moments before the wreck, the steering wheel began vibrating like a jackhammer in his hands, making it impossible for him to control the speeding vehicle. When the bus finally did come to a stop, it was on its right side on top of a sports car that was following it. At the scene, the CSIs discover that a recent parolee was on the bus, but is now unaccounted for---and that there's evidence of foul play.
ï¿½ Episode 19: "Stalker"
The hunt for a deadly stalker is the focus of a tense episode that builds to a nail-biting conclusion. Jane Galloway lives in fear. Her doors are triple-locked. Every shade is drawn. The bathroom window is nailed shut. An alarm system is activated. But none of Jane's precautions keep a stalker from killing her. When the CSIs arrive at the scene, they discover the victim with her hair dyed and her face shoved in a toilet. The sickening image hits a nerve for Nick, but he's unsure why. And the case leaves the team with two mysteries to address: Who killed Jane, and how could the murderer have possibly entered, and left, the house?
ï¿½ Episode 20: "Cats in the Cradle"
Grissom and Catherine investigate the stabbing death of an 80-year-old woman who lived in a run-down house full of cats; Nick and Sara comb through the remains of a car bombing that was, apparently, a murder plot gone awry.
ï¿½ Episode 21: "Anatomy of a Lye"
Grissom and Sara investigate when a man's body, which has been doused with lye, is found buried in a park; Nick tries to determine how a hiker apparently drowned in a desert.
ï¿½ Episode 22: "Cross-Jurisdictions"
Grissom and his crew handle their highest profile case to date when the city's former chief of detectives is slain execution-style in his house following a wild party. Missing from the residence are the chief's trophy wife and their 7-year-old daughter. When several motorists report seeing the girl along an access road near Miami, Catherine and Warrick fly there and meet that city's top CSI, Horatio Caine, who aids them in the investigation.
ï¿½ Episode 23: "The Hunger Artist"
The CSIs investigate when the body of an unidentified young woman is discovered stuffed in an overturned shopping cart near a freeway underpass. Her horribly disfigured and partially decomposed face is a nightmare of blood, scabs and scars, as if she'd been shoved into a fan. A huge circular hole dominates her left cheek. Someone not only wanted her dead, Grissom reasons, but "they wanted her ugly." Adding to the mystery are the cart's other contents: an expensive handbag, fashion magazines and a leather day planner with notes written in code.
Realizing the mistake made when the first season was released earlier this year, CSI season two gets the upgrade from a bloated full-frame presentation to a cozy anamorphic 1.66:1 this time around. If youï¿½ve ever wondered why studios bother releasing these on DVD--other than the fact that it is certainly very profitable--just take a look at how these discs display on your television. The video is very good to excellent, with only the most minor of defects. Colors are bright--stylistically overblown in some cases--and black levels and contrast are excellent. Skin tones are realistic throughout, and the uses of light and shadow really come across much better on DVD. The dizzying neon of Las Vegas glows with new intensity in some of the showï¿½s transition sequences.
Another oversight correction was made in the audio department. Season one only sported the bare-bones Dolby 2.0 audio track. This time out, we get a full 5.1 transfer that is fairly engaging. The front sound stage is evenly balanced, with the center doing the usual lionï¿½s share of the work, supported by good right/left separation. The rear channels fill in with decent to good atmospheric effects and respectable separation. The sub is fairly docile except in the more aggressive scenes, but we are talking television, and not super-budget moviemaking. Perhaps the most engaging surround use besides the adequate music support are the radical camera transition effects when we get the POV camera on a bullet piercing a heart or an inside look down someoneï¿½s throat, a CSI staple.
More improvements from season one await you when you pop in disc six. Much like the extensive and impressive web site for CSI, this disc has a lot of the technical stuff the electronics geek in your life can enjoy, with many of the gadgets explained in the ï¿½Tools of the Tradeï¿½ featurette. Not just the normal fluff that one may expect, we get CSIï¿½s own technical advisor explaining the gadgetry in some detail. The four other featurettes: ï¿½CSI Shooting Locationsï¿½ (6:26), ï¿½The CSI Tourï¿½ (8:32), ï¿½Makeup, Music & Special Effectsï¿½ (9:54), and ï¿½The Making of a Hitï¿½ (11:36) are all worth a look, with the latter to be skipped if youï¿½re short on time and/or patience. The other three add some value and insight that are certainly worth a gander for CSI fans. I listened to the commentary for the season two opener, ï¿½Burkedï¿½, which was a treat for a television show. The commentary was engaging, with tidbits about stylistic choices, visual effects, and character development.
THE BOTTOM LINE
A show that I started getting hooked on after a few viewings, CSI: Crime Scene Investigation is a treat on DVD. Solid video and adequate audio are rounded out with a nice host of supplements and an appropriately themed menu, as well as a box complete with crime scene tape for the ultimate presentation of this popular show.
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