A couple of weeks ago Disney released a 5-disc DVD set of the second (and sadly final) season of the syndicated hit series Legend of the Seeker. An ardent fan of the series myself, I was please to be assigned the opportunity to review the set.
For those uninitiated into the fascinating world of author Terry Goodkind’s The Sword of Truth series of novels, for which the series is based, Legend of the Seeker follows the epic story of forest guide sans Seeker Richard Cypher (Craig Horner), who embarks on a treacherous journey to defeat evil and save all of mankind alongside Confessor Kahlan Amnell (Bridget Regan), Master Wizard Zeddicus Zu’l Zorander (Bruce Spence) and Mord’Sith Cara (Tabrett Bethell).
This DVD set is filled with not only all 22 episodes from the second season but also bonus features, including extended and deleted scenes from four of the season’s episodes as well as two behind-the-scenes features called “Redemption Of a Mord’Sith: Meet Cara” and “Under the Underworld”.
First, the 22 episodes contained on the 5-disc set include the following (in order of airing):
Marked (Episode 1) – Richard, Kahlan and Zedd’s celebration of their victory over Darken Rahl is interrupted by an attack from a creature that escaped from the underworld. Meanwhile Cara jockeys for dominance with the Mord’Sith and the witch Shota reveals a prophecy about the Seeker that horrifies Zedd. Guest stars Charisma Carpenter (Buffy and Angel)
Baneling (Episode 2) – Richard, Kahlan, Zedd and Cara free a D’Haran prison during their search for the Stone of Tears. When the killing continues, they have to realize that the Keeper is sending the dead back through the rift to the underworld to prey on the living.
Broken (Episode 3) – Cara is found to be guilty of a terrible crime from the past and is sentenced to be executed by Kahlan. Richard disagrees with Cara’s punishment though, and tries to save her before she meets an untimely end.
Touched (Episode 4) – Kahlan and the others go on a search for the last remaining confessor — a young girl named Annabelle. They discover that Annabelle is unaware of her powers though. When Annabelle discovers what she’s capable of, she uses her powers for her own selfish purposes, putting Richard’s quest to find the Stone of Tears at stake and leaving Kahlan with a very difficult decision.Guest stars Aimee Teegarden (Friday Night Lights)
Wizard (Episode 5) – In order to trick Zedd into naming a new Seeker, Shota puts Zedd under a spell of forgetting and gives him back his youth.
Fury (Episode 6) – Richard accidentally sets free an uncontrollable rage in him and a group of peaceful people when he teaches them to fight. In order to save them, Richard has to find a way to master his rage before it can consume them all.
Resurrection (Episode 7) – The Mord’Sith Denna returns and uses Richard to take control over the throne that Darken Rahl left behind. Guest stars Gina Holden (Flash Gordon and Blood Ties)
Light (Episode 8 ) – The Mord’Sith Denna captures Zedd, and Richard must leave Kahlan and Cara to go after him, while he makes a difficult choice and aborts his mission to go on a journey that will change his life.
Dark (Episode 9) – The Sisters of the Light teach Richard to use his wizard powers. When one of them discloses a terrible secret, Zedd is forced to name a new Seeker. Guest stars Jolene Blalock (Star Trek: Enterprise), who appeared in multiple episodes.
Perdition (Episode 10) – Kahlan’s life is threatened by sorceress Sister Nicci. In the meantime, Richard has to face his worst fear while he is trapped in the Valley of Perdition.
Torn (Episode 11) – Kahlan loses her powers just when her homeland is in danger and Richard has to realize that their situation is even worse than it appears to be.
Hunger (Episode 12) – Zedd is prompted to seek a cure for Cara after a terrible fate befalls her.
Princess (Episode 13) – To save Kahlan from execution, reluctant Cara must pose as a polished princess and compete in an elaborate masquerade of manners to win a powerful ruler’s affections. Guest stars Parker Stevenson (The Hardy Boys and Baywatch).
Bound (Episode 14) – Richard is forced to protect Kahlan’s greatest enemy when Kahlan is put under a life-threatening spell only her enemy can remove. Guest stars Michael Nouri (Flashdance and Damages)
Creator (Episode 15) – Richard, Kahlan and Zedd’s lives are put at risk when they meet a young and powerful woman named Maia who claims to be the Creator. It becomes crucial to uncover Maia’s true identity before she can destroy them all. Guest stars Keisha Castle-Hughes (Whale Rider)
Desecrated (Episode 16) – When Richard tries to save some villagers who are marked for death from a walking weapon of vengeance, he jeopardizes Kahlan, Zedd and Cara’s lives.
Vengeance (Episode 17) – While Zedd and his brother seek revenge for the murder of their father, a stranger steps into Richard’s life to send him on a collision course with Zedd. Guest stars John Rhys-Davies (The Lord of the Rings trilogy).
Walter (Episode 18) – Darken Rahl makes plans to exit the Underworld while Richard has very little time to find a scroll that will bring him to the Stone of Tears.
Extinction (Episode 19) – Richard is forced to team up with his resurrected brother when Darken Rahl deciphers the secrets hidden in an ancient scroll.
Eternity (Episode 20) – Richard and Kahlan are trapped in a magical land when they finally find the Stone of Tears. In the meantime, Cara and Zedd walk into a trap that leads to a deadly confrontation.
Unbroken (Episode 21) – When Zedd tries to save Cara who was re-broken by Darken Rahl, Richard, Kahlan and everyone else’s lives are changed dramatically.
Tears (Episode 22) – SERIES FINALE – In order to save the world of the living, Richard finally faces his greatest enemy and Kahlan may have to kill the love of her life.
The deleted and/or extended scenes featured in the bonus material are from Episode 1 “Marked,” Episode 11 “Torn,” Episode 18 “Walter” and three from Episode 22 (the series finale) “Tears”. Each of these scenes gives a different perspective on actual aired scenes within the episodes, which would have made an interesting contrast should they have been included.
Lastly, the bonus behind-the-scenes features include:
1. A look at the new character Cara, the lengths that were taken to cast this role, the rigors of training the actresses who portrayed the Mord’Sith, the intricacies of costume design as well as the evolution of the character Cara. This feature included interviews with actress Tabrett Bethell, costume designer Jane Holland, Director/Producer Mark Beesley and Stunt Coordinator Steve McQuillan.
2. A layered discussion of how the Underworld was depicted on the screen using blue screen technology, visceral representations of this hell-like world and how 16 dancers could be morphed into 10,000 inhabitants of the Underworld. Interviews with Executive Producers Ken Biller and Stephen Tolkin are featured as well as interviews with George Port, Visual Effects Supervisor; David Roessell, Producer; Robert Gillies, Production Designer and Donald Duncan, Director of Photography.
This DVD set of the popular series is a must have for any fan of the series, reader of the novels for which they are based or any genre fan. Legend of the Seeker: The Complete Second Season retails for the suggested price of $45.99 and can be purchased online and at retailers in your area.