Tuesday, 29 March 2011

Ugly Betty Season 4 DVD Box Set Review

Ugly Betty is perhaps my favourite TV Show EVER to hit the screens and thus I must get all the DVD box sets. This is the Fourth and Final Season.

No of discs- 4
No of Episodes-20

The cover of the box set is again bright and colourful and shows the transformation Betty undergoes from Season 1 compared to her current look. It is a nice cover and is fitting given this is the show’s final series.

The start of season 4 sees Betty start a new page in her life as Mode’s associate features editor. Matt Hartley, her ex (who saw her kissing her first love Henry whilst they were still together), now becomes her boss, and makes her life hell, until they rekindle their relationship, but it doesn’t last as he soon leaves.

Daniel tries to get over his dead wife, Molly, and enters an occult group which does not end well, whilst Wilhelmina is trying to find her lover Connor who keeps disappearing without a trace. Her problems are elevated when her daughter comes to her and they are involved in a murder case which turns into a monetary scandal.

Claire goes and looks for her son, whom she gave up for adoption, and he later comes to  find her, and things end explosively with Wilhelmina’s manipulation in between the two.

Amanda strives to something greater than being a receptionist, whilst Marc is fed up of not being promoted under Wilhelmina and becomes Daniel’s assistant instead.

Mid season, the show announced that it would be the final season, and it would not be renewed, which meant the show had to quickly change the plot and tie up the loose ends and finish the show off… Despite all the open plots, they managed a good job up till the season finale.

The news brought a drastic turn in the plot and everything went towards this end, with Justin’s relationship with his classmate Austin getting heated; Betty being given more job opportunities and Hilda’s relationship with Bobby getting serious… but it isn’t until the final few episodes that all is revealed- Betty’s career move, Wilhelmina’s decision in love or career and the future for Daniel.

It wasn’t the explosive cliff-hanger I would’ve liked, but it was a nice rounding off of everything, tying all (well, most) of the loose ends, closing the chapter up till then, yet opening new opportunities…

I really liked this season, and is definitely better than season three, possibly two. The humour throughout was pure laugh out loud and the outrageousness does not cease. Betty is always wrapped up in some sort of problem… all of which are absolutely hilarious; one scene depicts Betty’s braces getting caught on a diamond bra!

The “Betty getting her braces removed” episode was highly dramatised and exceptionally produced, whilst the Bahamas Episode was also amazingly focused, stylish and hot… However, the London Episode was tacky as they didn’t actually go to London, but for the season finale, they DID- which doesn’t seem to make any sense, but there you go!

The show splashed out a lot of creativity for this season, and for it to be cancelled is such a shame, but it produced yet another hilariously funny season we can now enjoy as a box set.

Favourite Parts:
-Betty’s alternate life if she was born beautiful
-Everyone being mean to her and hunting her down (early episodes)
-Bahamas episode with Amanda and Betty competing for Matt

America Ferrera- Betty Suarez
Eric Mabius- Daniel Meade
Vanessa Williams- Wilhelmina Slater
Becki Newtown- Amanda Tanen
Michael Urie- Marc St. James

Also stars: Tony Plana, Ana Ortiz, Mark Indelicato, Judith Light, Daniel Eric Gold, Yaya Da Costa, Grant Bowler, Adam Rodriguez, Kristin Johnston.

Guest Starring: Chris Williams (Vanessa William’s brother), Shakira, Freddy Rodriguez, Christopher Gorham, Ashley Jensen, Brooklyn Decker and Aaron Tveit.

This season sees Betty grow up and move on from being an assistant to a features editor, and getting her braces removed. America Ferrera has also grown up and they are transitioning nicely. She still manages to pull of the naivety and emotion required of the role.

The role of Wilhelmina this season required much more of a change of heart. She is torn between her personal desires of love and her career driven lifestyle. Despite her increasing softness, she is still mean and evil most the time and Vanessa Williams does a great job portraying both.

Yaya DaCosta, who was a contestant on America’s Next Top Model, stars as Wilhelmina’s daughter, Nico, and she does a surprisingly good job at acting and being constantly distraught.

The mass of guest stars this season all contribute in some way or another, with Shakira mainly being a novelty, and the return of Christopher Gorham (Henry), Freddy Rodriguez (Gio) and Ashley Jensen (Christina) for the season finale rounds the show up nicely.

•Betty Goes Bahamas
The show really splashed out this year sending a bunch of the cast to the Bahamas, and this special feature Michael Urie and Becki Newton trying to find the rest of their cast members during a shoot.


•Mode After Hours – Webisodes
I’m so glad they included these because they were definitely funny and feature Becki Newton and Michael Urie fooling around Mode.

•Betty Bloops
•Deleted Scenes
•Audio Commentary

Having the box set, I am able to watch the show without breaks, without waiting, and I have had an Ugly Betty marathon- absolutely phenomenal- reliving every moment of the hit TV show since it first aired in 2006, and loving every moment of it.

This season finale sees the show take a creative turn in the right direction, and is possibly the second best season after Season one. It is such a shame the show was cancelled at this moment in time, as I’m sure given the opportunity for another season, it would’ve given SO much more. The show had and still has so much potential, with talks of a film already out within days of the finale airing.

The series finale was a good end, reflecting a lot of the styles found in the first episode ever, and I would highly recommend this box set because it is so funny all the way!

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