Powers: Season 1 (a J!-ENT Blu-ray Disc Review)
July 6, 2015 by Dennis Amith
“Powers: Season 1” is an exciting storyline about a former superhero who has lost all his superpowers and together with his partner of the Powers Division, will do all they can to investigate and stop the evil individuals with Powers. But can they? For those who love edgy, dark and violent comic book stories, will enjoy “Powers: Season 1” on Blu-ray!
TITLE: Powers: Season 1
FILM RELEASE: 2015
DURATION: 10 Episodes (437 Minutes)
BLU-RAY DISC INFORMATION: 1080p High Definition, 1:78:1, English and French 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio, Subtitles: English, English SDH, French
COMPANY: Sony Pictures Home Entertainment
Release Date: July 14, 2015
Created by Brian Bendis and Charlie Huston
Directed by Bill Eagles, David Petrarca, Mikael Salomon, David Slade, Tim Hunter, Aaron Lipstadt
Written by Brian Bendis, Charlie Huston, Michael Avon Oeming, Allison Moore, David Paul Francis, Julie Siege, Remi Aubuchon
Based on the Comic Book by Seong-Dong Kim
Producer: Tae-hun Lee
Music by Dalparan, Peach
Cinematography by Taek Gyun Cha
Edited by Changju Kim, Kyoung-sook Park
Production Design by Je Heyon Park
Costume Design by Na-ry Son
Sharlto Copley as Christian Walker
Susan Heyward as Deena Pilgrim
Noah Taylor as Johnny royalle
Olesya Rulin as Calista Secor
Adam Godley as Captain Cross
Max Fowler as Krispin Stockley
Michelle Forbes as Retro Girl
Eddie Izzard as “Big Bad” Wolfe
Logan Browning as Zora
Aaron Farb as Simons
Justice Leak as Kutter
Phillip DeVona as Zabriski
Andrew Sensenig as Triphammer
What if the world was full of superheroes who aren’t actually heroic at all? What if all their “powers” were just one more excuse for mischief, mayhem, murder, and endorsement deals? Enter the men and women of the Powers Division, the brave people in charge of protecting humans like us and keeping the peace over commercialized, god-like men and women who glide through the sky imposing their power over the mortals who both worship and fear them. Based on the graphic novel by Michael Avon Oeming and Brian Michael Bendis, the edgy and dramatic POWERS follows the lives of two homicide detectives, Christian Walker (Sharlto Copley) and Deena Pilgrim (Susan Heyward), who are assigned to investigate these cases.
Back in 2000, comic book writer Brian Michael Bendis and artist Michael Avon Oeming created the comic book series “Powers”.
Known for its superhero fantasy, crime noir and police procedural genres, the online streaming series adaptation would have its premiere on the PlayStation Network in March 2015.
The film would star Sharlto Copley (“District 9”, “Maleficent”, “Chappie”), Susan Heyward (“Poltergeist”, “Mother of George”), Noah Taylor (“Charlie and the Chocolate Factory”, “Submarine”, “Almost Famous”), Olesya Rulin (“High School Musical” films, “Family Weekend”), Michelle Forbes (“Battlestar Galactica”, “True Blood”), Eddie Izzard (“Valkyrie”, “Ocean’s Thirteen”, “The Riches”), Logan Browning (“Bratz”, “Meet the Browns”), Adam Godley (“Battleship”, “The Theory of Everything”, “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory”), Max Fowler (“Rage”, “The Expelled”) and Aaron Farb (“42”, “Kill the Messenger”).
And now, the first season (ten episodes) will be released on Blu-ray courtesy of Sony Pictures Home Entertainment.
The series revolves around homicide detective Christian Walker (portrayed by Sharlto Copley) and his new partner Deena Pilgrim (portrayed by Susan Heyward), both who work in a special homicide division called Powers, and investigate crimes caused by superhumans a.k.a. “Powers”.
Christian was formerly a superhero known as Diamond, a brave flying superhero until his powers were taken away by his previous mentor turned sadistic killer, Wolfe (portrayed by Eddie Izzard).
While Christian uses his experience to help the Powers division, the fact is he does miss his powers.
But for now, while his team do their thing, other superheroes such as the invulnerable and powerful Retro Girl (portrayed by Michelle Forbes), non-powered scientific genius Triphammer or the young light manipulator Zora (portrayed by Logan Browning), help in taking down the villains and protect the innocent civilization.
But all is not easy for Powers as his former best friend, a teleporter named Johnny Royalle (portrayed by Noah Taylor) is one of the top people in the underground who is responsible for the distribution of a power-enhancing drug known as “Sway”, which may also kill the person taking it. His mentor Wolfe (portrayed by Eddie Izzard) has become a sadistic supervillain who eats people and powers in order to “fuel up”. And there is Calista Secor (portrayed by Olesya Rulin), a wannabe who hangs out with powers (and protected by Johnny Royalle), and convinces herself that she has powers that will awaken someday.
But the city will be rocked when the super villain, the big bad “Wolfe” escapes from prison. Can anyone stop him?
“Powers: Season One” is presented in 1080p High Definition (1:78:1). Picture quality is very good as closeups showcase great detail on the skin of characters. Outdoor scenes are vibrant but for the most part, the series looks very good in HD. I didn’t notice any banding issues or artifacts.
AUDIO & SUBTITLES:
“Powers: Season One” is presented in English and French DTS-HD MA. The lossless soundtrack is very good, from its gory sounds of Wolfe feasting on his victims, Retro Girl breaking the sound barrier during flight or the many action sequences throughout the film. Dialogue is crystal clear and while not entirely immersive, the action sequences utilizes the surround channels.
Subtitles are in English, English SDH and French.
“Powers: Season 1” comes with the following special features:
- Policing the All Powerful: Envisioning and Filming Powers – (10:07) The cast and crew discuss being part of “Powers”.
- From One Visual Medium to Another: The Art and Adaptation of Powers – (11:01) Brian Michael Bendis and Michael Avon Oeming discuss the comic book series they created and the difference from the TV series and the original comic books.
- Outtakes – (2:16) Outtakes from the first season of “Powers”.
“Powers: Season 1” comes with an UltraViolet code.
While I have never read the “Powers” comic book series, I have read comic books in the past that dealt with normal people in the world of superheroes.
Marvel had flirted with this storyline in the past, one of my favorites was an Ultraverse comic book series known as “Firearm” about a normal policeman taking on supervillains. But there are also series that dealt with the concept of superheroes in a dark, interesting storyline, one of those popular comic book titles became a live action film years ago titled “The Watchmen”.
But I watched “Powers” and I couldn’t help but be captivated in the storyline of a former, popular superhero known as Diamond, whose powers were sucked out by his former mentor turned sadistic supervillain, Wolfe.
Diamond, who is now a homicide detective going by his real name Christian Walker works in the Powers division for law enforcement trying to capture Powers supervillains but it has not been an easy job. Walker thinks about being a superhero and his old superpowers far too often, messed up after his partner is killed by a Powers they took into custody and now he has a new partner in Deena Pilgrim, who is excited to be Walker’s partner, but yet Walker doesn’t want to see another partner get killed.
Throw in an interesting cast in characters such as his former friend and now a shady, cold bad guy named Johnny Royalle; a wannabe who desires powers named Calista Secor; his former flame and one of the few superheroes that he grew up and is still going strong, Retro Girl but also the sadistic and savage supervillain, his former mentor Wolfe.
As the first few episodes tries to establish the characters and the world they live in, it doesn’t take long for the story to become a bit gruesome thanks to the Big Bad Wolfe. A former mentor not just to Christian but also Johnny Royalle, these three had a special friendship until something bad ruined it.
But as Wolfe tries to eat as many people as he can in order to fuel himself and become uber-powerful, with his escape from prison, past and present superheroes try to do all they can to take him on. But can they really match up with Wolfe’s sadistic might?
The first season is still in that developmental stage where actors are trying to feel their comfort zone, creators trying to ramp up the excitement and sure enough, ends the first season with a major surprise. I feel the writing and acting definitely improved throughout the season and I’m looking forward to season two.
As for the Blu-ray release, picture quality is fantastic and the series featuring great picture quality, while the lossless soundtrack may not be entirely immersive but sounds very good. You also get a few special features included, especially one that goes into the differences between the comic book and the series.
I have to admit, when it was announced that there would be a series that would be premiering on the Sony PlayStation, I was a bit surprised by that. I would never expect original series to be featured for a video game console, but I’m glad that “Powers” received an adaptation and like many others, I’m looking forward to season two.
With that being said, its important to note that despite this being a superhero series, this is not for parents to show children. There is a lot of violence, blood, profanity and definitely not a family series.
Overall, “Powers: Season 1” is an exciting storyline about a former superhero who has lost all his superpowers and together with his partner of the Powers Division, will do all they can to investigate and stop the evil individuals with Powers. But can they? For those who love edgy, darker comic book stories, will enjoy “Powers: Season 1” on Blu-ray!
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