New On DVD This Week: True Blood, Maverick, Drop Dead Diva, Rookie Blue

'True Blood' (HBO Home Entertainment)

True Blood

As yet another supernatural force comes to light in Bon Temps, a fresh pot of trouble brews for Sookie and the town’s residents in ‘True Blood‘ Season 4, now available on “Blu-ray with HBO select” and DVD. Both sets include the full 12-episode season, along with extensive bonus materials including extensive interviews and never-before-seen content. New from HBO Home Entertainment, “Blu-ray with HBO Select” offers ‘True Blood’ Blu-ray buyers the choice of three ways to watch – Blu-ray, DVD and Digital Download. This marks the first time a TV series box set has included all three formats in one complete package. Additionally, previous seasons of the hit series are also available on “Blu-ray with Select” with season four. Season 4 finds Sookie embroiled in a love triangle and tangling with a charismatic witch; Lafayette, Tars and Jesus get tempted with otherworldly powers; Jessica tries to adjust to domestic life, while Jason finds himself alone in werepanther territory. As old alliances crumble and new relationships form, nobody’s safe when there’s magic in the air. Buy the Season 4 Blu-ray/DVD combo pack right here.


You won’t want to bluff your way out of watching this unforgettable television series as Warner Home Video brings all 27 episodes of ‘Maverick: The Complete First Season’ onto DVD for the first time. Just in time for Father’s Day gift giving, this classic and sometimes humorous Western series was nominated for four Emmys and won one during its successful 5-year broadcast run. This seven-disc set includes all 27 one-hour episodes from the first season. Wisecracking ladies’ man Bret Maverick (James Garner) and his more serious brother Bart (Jack Kelly) are two handsome bachelors on the loose in the Wild West, traveling with a sense of humor and a knack for getting into trouble.  The two have more success at the game of poker than the game of love, yet they keep trying their luck in one frontier outpost after another. Just when card sharks Bret and Bart thought they could slip out of town quietly, they come face to face with a gunman. When it’s time for a showdown, don’t bet against a Maverick. Buy the Season 1 DVD right here.

Drop Dead Diva

The critically acclaimed Lifetime hit ‘Drop Dead Diva‘ Season 3 DVD is now available. The dramedy stars Brooke Elliott as Jane Bingum, the brilliant yet shy attorney brought back to life with the spirit of a wannabe model. The show also stars comedian Margaret Cho, Jackson Hurst, Kate Levering, April Bowlby, Josh Stamberg and Ben Feldman. This season features a plethora of special appearances by guests including Paula Abdul, LeAnn Rimes, Wendy Williams, Lance Bass, Kathy Griffin, Brandy, Clay Aiken and many more. Josh Berman is creator and executive producer, which is also executive produced by Craig Zadan and Neil Meron. Buy the Season 3 DVD right here.

Rookie Blue

Season 2 of the breakout hit primetime series ‘Rookie Blue‘ delivered ABC’s best summer results in its timeslot in five years and is returning to ABC this June for an explosive Season 3. Before the young rookie cops of television’s sexiest police drama appear in all-new episodes, arm yourself with every episode from the rookies’ second smash season with ‘Rookie Blue,’ the Complete Second Season, plus tons of bulletproof bonus features, including “Making of” featurettes, behind-the-scenes interviews and footage and more. Not since ‘NYPD Blue’ has there been a television series that so candidly reveals the world of those who walk the thin blue line. ‘Rookie Blue’ is this generation’s cop show, served straight up with a twist of danger, sex and high-stakes drama.  Each hour-long episode of this original series follows the lives of five inexperienced twenty-something rookies plunged into the world of big city policing – where even the smallest mistake can have life-or-death consequences. Buy the Season 2 DVD right here.

Murdoch Mysteries

Combining the period appeal of Sherlock Holmes with the forensic fascination of CSI, ‘Murdoch Mysteries,’ Season 4, is now available on Blu-ray and DVD. Based on the characters from award-winning author Maureen Jennings’ Detective Murdoch novels, the acclaimed Canadian series has garnered 25 Gemini nominations to its credit, including Best Writing and Best Dramatic Series. Set in Victorian-era Toronto, this smart, compelling series follows Yannick Bisson (Sue Thomas: F.B.Eye) as Detective William Murdoch as he pushes the boundaries of criminal science to solve the city’s most baffling murders. Distributed by ITV Studios and available to U.S. audiences for the first time, the 4-volume DVD boxed set and 3-disc Blu-ray set include all 13 episodes from season four, plus a behind-the-scenes featurette. A fifth season has already been produced, and a sixth season begins production in spring 2012. Season 4 pits the kindhearted Detective Murdoch against a would-be vampire, a costumed killer, and ruthless mobsters, inspiring him to whip up a slew of innovative crime-fighting techniques along the way. But while Murdoch nabs the culprits with the help of politically ambitious inspector Thomas Brackenreid (Thomas Craig, Where the Heart Is) and eager constable George Crabtree (Jonny Harris, Hatching, Matching & Dispatching), he struggles to subdue his feelings for former sweetheart Dr. Julia Ogden (Gemini winner Hélène Joy, Durham County). Buy the Season 4 Blu-ray right here.


With a dose of House’s dark humor and an infusion of humanity and warmth, the gripping medical drama, ‘Monroe,’ is now available on DVD. Acclaimed Irish actor James Nesbitt (Murphy’s Law, Woody Allen’s Match Point, and the upcoming Hobbit films) stars as Dr. Gabriel Monroe, a neurosurgical genius with a quick wit and a heart to match his titanic ego. Following no rules but his own, Monroe infuriates colleagues and terrifies interns with his glib repartee and arrogant self-regard. Monroe offers a riveting look inside the high-stakes medical profession. Series 1 premiered on ITV in March 2011; a second season has been commissioned. Monroe made its U.S. debut on Acorn’s streaming service, Acorn TV, earlier this year but has not aired on U.S. television. Pitting his formidable skills against high-risk medical emergencies is only one of Monroe’s challenges. He and his team must also navigate the toll that medicine takes on patients and doctors—especially when dealing with their personal lives. As slick as he is with a scalpel, Monroe struggles at home as a husband and father, and at work he clashes with brusque heart surgeon Dr. Jenny Bremner (Sarah Parish, The Pillars of the Earth). Tom Riley (Lost in Austen) also stars. Buy the Series 1 DVD right here.


Joining the tradition of great sports comedies, ‘Goon‘ is now available on Blu-ray Combo Pack, Single-Disc Blu-ray and DVD. Written by Jay Baruchel, and Evan Goldberg, co-writer of Superbad and Pineapple Express, the movie features an all-star lineup including Seann William Scott (Role Models, The Dukes of Hazzard, American Pie), Golden Globe Nominee Liev Schreiber (Salt, X-Men Origins: Wolverine), Jay Baruchel (Tropic Thunder, Knocked Up), Alison Pill (Midnight In Paris, Milk), and Eugene Levy (American Pie, Best in Show). ‘Goon’ tells the story of Doug Glatt (Scott), a simple, but loveable guy, who dreams of a more rewarding job and gaining his parents’ respect. When a chance encounter with an on-ice thug leads to a fistfight that Doug easily wins, the on-looking coach sees Doug’s potential, in spite of his lack of any hockey playing ability. Joining the team and with the encouragement of his best friend (Jay Baruchel), Doug quickly becomes a rising star. Soon he’ll have the opportunity to face-off against the infamous league thug Ross Rhea (Liev Schreiber), perhaps finally land a girlfriend and stick to a job he enjoys. Now – all he needs is to learn how to skate. Buy the Blu-ray/DVD combo pack right here.

The Diamond Queen

Marking The Queen’s 60 years as Head of State of the United Kingdom and Head of the Commonwealth, ‘The Diamond Queen’ tells the story of the young girl who never expected to reign over the United Kingdom. Sixty years after she acceded to the throne, this landmark documentary hosted by Andrew Marr looks at her role within the Monarchy and what she has accomplished for her country and her people both at home and abroad. Told over three hour-long episodes, it features interviews with prime ministers, world leaders and members of the Royal Family, and closely follows The Queen’s working engagements around the world for the period of more than a year and a half. Buy the DVD right here.


A Necessary Death

An ambitious young film student takes a daring step for his thesis, but his bold idea may be his undoing – and may cost a life – in ‘A Necessary Death,’ an eye-opening now available on DVD. Film student Gilbert (G.J. Echternkamp, Extraordinary Measures) has a novel idea for his final thesis project – find someone who wants to kill himself and follow him through the final days of his life. Gilbert posts a message on the Internet looking for a suitable subject, and after interviewing a handful of people with various reasons for taking their life, he chooses a British expatriate (Matt Tilley) who is slowly dying of an inoperable brain tumor Assured that his subject will actually commit suicide on film, Gilbert believes he has found the perfect candidate to explore the nature of the act objectively. It is important to Gilbert that Matt actually kills himself, since his film’s integrity will be questioned if the outcome is different. But as filming goes on, it soon becomes apparent that the creative process is impacting the man’s road toward death, and before long Gilbert and his crew become more involved than they ever wanted to be. Buy the DVD right here.

The Queen’s Palaces

‘The Queen’s Palaces’ shares an extensive look into the history and architecture of the Royals homes in this special documentary series presented by Fiona Bruce. Throughout these three remarkable episodes, Fiona reveals the treasures behind the gates of Buckingham Palace, Windsor Castle, and The Palace of Holyroodhouse. Discover the interior décor that surrounds the Royal Collection as experts contribute their knowledge of some of the world’s most prized possessions. Furthermore, learn about the stories behind the creation of these incredible buildings. Over the course of the series, chronologies of historical moments that embody the essence of these prized properties are followed. As Fiona walks you through the palaces, objects and art of profound historic importance are showcased including some other quirky pieces of work. Bonus features include an introduction to the series by His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales, discussing the role these palaces play in the life of the Monarchy and in the history of Britain. Buy the DVD right here.

The Garfield Show: Summer Adventures

It’s one adventure after another as Garfield and his pals look for a pot of gold at the end of a rainbow, try to save their favorite pizza place and morph into superheroes. Then hold on and get ready for one wild ride as they visit Cheese World, a cheese-lover’s theme park! But will Jon rain on the summer fun when he enrolls Garfield in an extreme education program to become a “normal” cat? Not if Garfield can help it. Buy the DVD right here.

Man on a Ledge

Man on a Ledge‘ stars Sam Worthington (‘Avatar,’ ‘Wrath of the Titans’) as Nick Cassidy, an ex-cop who escapes from prison to plan the ultimate heist: steal a $40 million diamond from a cutthroat businessman, and in the process prove his innocence.  The film’s all-star ensemble cast also includes Elizabeth Banks (‘What to Expect When You’re Expecting,’ ‘The Hunger Games’), Jamie Bell (‘The Adventures of Tintin,’ ‘Jumper’), Anthony Mackie (upcoming ‘Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter,’ ‘The Hurt Locker’), Edward Burns (‘Friends with Kids,’ ’15 Minutes’), Titus Welliver (‘The Town,’ ‘Lost’), Genesis Rodriguez (‘Casa de mi Padre,’ HBO’s ‘Entourage’), Kyra Sedgwick (‘The Closer,’ ‘Phenomenon’) and four-time Academy Award nominee Ed Harris. ‘Man on a Ledge’ bonus materials include “The Ledge” – a “making of” featurette and a trailer audio commentary by Elizabeth Banks. Buy the Blu-ray right here.

Highlights of the 2012 Masters Tournament

When the 76th Masters Tournament ended on the second hole of a sudden-death playoff, it was a 33-year-old Floridian named Bubba Watson who triumphed, shedding tears of joy in the warm embrace of his mother on the 10th green at Augusta National Golf Club. In a tournament filled with drama, triumphant play and only the fourth double-eagle in Masters history, it was the denouement of one of the most exciting Augusta tournaments in years. Relive Watson’s victory and every scintillating moment with ‘Highlights of the 2012 Masters Tournament,’ the official commemorative DVD from A+E Networks Home Entertainment and Augusta National. It is available to add to every golfer’s home entertainment library. The 2012 Masters was a surprising and volatile affair, as world number one Luke Donald and four-time winner Tiger Woods struggled to find their rhythm.  However, it was Watson and South Africa’s Louis Oosthuizen who would emerge from a diverse and unpredictable leader board the final day. Buy the DVD right here.

Life Without Principle

Three ordinary people – a gangster, a broker and a police inspector – find their destinies inextricably intertwined as lies, deceit and greed take them on a violent, wild heist in ‘Life Without Principle,’ legendary Hong Kong film director Johnny To’s (Running Out of Time, Triad Election) critically-acclaimed film now available on DVD, Digital and Video on Demand. The riveting thriller boasts a stellar cast, including Ching Wan Lau (Poker King, The Great Magician), Richie Ren (Accident, Punished), Denise Ho (Merry-Go-Round), Hoi-pang Lo (Dream Home, Sparrow), Terrance Yin (Lara Croft Tomb Raider: The Cradle of Life) and Hang-shuen So (Bullet in the Head). At the 2012 Hong Kong Film Critics Society Awards, Life Without Principle won the Film of Merit award, a Best Actor trophy for Ching Wan Lau and a Best Screenplay award for the team of Tin-Shing Yip, Nai-Hoi Yau, Ben Wong, Kin-Yee Au and Ka-kit Cheung; while at the 2012 Hong Kong Film Awards, Hang-shuen So was named Best Supporting Actress and Hoi-pang Lo Best Supporting Actor.  In addition, the film was nominated for the prestigious Golden Lion at the 2011 Venice Film Festival. Buy the DVD right here.

The Awakening

Mention Bram Stoker’s name, and literature and movie buffs will conjure up Count Dracula. But there was more blood in Stoker’s pen. He also wrote The Jewel of the Seven Stars, later filmed with chilling effect as ‘The Awakening,’ grippingly directed by Mike Newell (Dance with a Stranger, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire) and sensuously shot on Egyptian locations by veteran cinematographer Jack Cardiff. Charlton Heston stars as an Egyptologist with a passion that will trigger several mysterious deaths. He’s obsessed with a sorceress whose return has been prophesied – and whose tomb he opened at the exact moment his daughter was born. Can ancient evil reach forward in time to curse the present? Horror movie fans know the terrifying answer. Buy the DVD at

White Squall

Based on a true incident from 1960, ‘White Squall‘ is the story of the tragic sinking of the Albatross, a prep school educational two-masted schooner, during a Caribbean storm. Screenwriter Todd Robinson wrote the script after meeting one of the tragedy’s survivors, Chuck Gieg. In the film, Gieg (Scott Wolf) is the narrator. He and his fellow students, whose parents have paid handsomely for their schooling, which combines classroom work with real-life adventure, are introduced to their grizzled seafaring captain, Christopher Sheldon (Jeff Bridges). Gieg is initially skeptical of Sheldon’s authority, but he gradually comes to see the captain as a model of manhood. The other boys aboard include Frank Beaumont (Jeremy Sisto), a self-absorbed snob; Dean Preston (Eric Michael Cole), a troublemaker and bully; Tod Johnston (Balthazar Getty), a returning student; and the naïve Tracy Lapchick (Ethan Embry). John Savage plays the pompous English teacher aboard the ship. Various incidents establish the boys’ insecurities and relationships with the authorities — and foreshadow their eventual fate. The killer squall comes up quietly but soon turns deadly, and the boys are forced to go beyond their privileged upbringings and deal with real danger. Buy the Blu-ray right here.


Director Bruce Paltrow teams with his Oscar-winning daughter Gwyneth Paltrow for the road comedy ‘Duets‘ with music. Paltrow plays Liv, a struggling professional singer whose meets her father, Ricky Dean (Huey Lewis), for the first time at the funeral of her mother. As it turns out, both Liv and Ricky supplement the income from few-and-far-between gigs by singing in karaoke contests, and soon father and daughter are competing on the same circuit. Meanwhile, Todd Woods (Paul Giamatti), a salesman who has grown disenchanted with his job, his family, and his life, picks up a hitch-hiker named Reggie Kane (Andre Braugher), and during a stop at a tavern, they discover they make a good duet team while belting out a version of “Try A Little Tenderness.” And waitress Suzi Loomis (Maria Bello) sweet talks Billy (Scott Speedman), a cabbie, into driving her to Omaha, where the national karaoke finals will determine who does the best job of singing along with the records, as the lives of these six characters begin to intersect. Duets also features Angie Dickinson as Blair, Liv’s grandmother who was once a showgirl in Frank Sinatra’s Las Vegas floorshow; Brad Pitt was originally cast in Speedman’s role but withdrew after he and Paltrow announced the end of their off-camera relationship. Buy the Blu-ray right here.

Gone Fishin’

Just how much trouble can two guys get into while trying to catch some fish? Find out in ‘Gone Fishin.’ Joe Waters (Joe Pesci) and Gus Green (Danny Glover) are two guys from New Jersey who’ve known each other since childhood; they’ve always been friends, and they’ve always been inept to the point of posing a threat to life and limb (early on in the proceedings, we get to watch them blow up a factory by accident). Joe and Gus are avid fishermen, and as luck would have it, they win a trip to the Everglades to do some serious angling. They hitch their boat trailer to Joe’s 1968 Plymouth and hit the road to Florida, but they run afoul of a con man named Dekker Massey (Nick Brimble), who quickly relieves Joe of his automobile. Not about to let the loss of their wheels stop them, Joe and Gus try to hitch a ride, and they get picked up by a pair of beautiful women, Rita (Rosanna Arquette) and Angie (Lynn Whitfield), who are also headed South. It seems that Dekker conned Rita’s mom out of much of her valuables, and they’re looking for him in hopes of getting them back; Joe and Gus get roped into helping them out, which leads to a number of misadventures involving guns, treasure maps, boat chases, and hurricanes. Sadly, the production of this comedy had tragic consequences when a stunt performer was killed and two others were seriously injured while filming a jump on a boat ramp. Buy the Blu-ray right here.

The opinions expressed are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Comcast.

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