Most of us remember where we were when the Writers Guild of America went on strike in 2007. I was sitting in a cafe reading the Wall Street Journal when the news came on television. Everyone stopped, turned and listened to the horrifying news. A woman ran outside screaming. Two children sitting at opposite ends of the cafe began crying. An old woman, the poor soul, had a heart attack (she survived). It was a cold, memorable day.
OK, that last paragraph is bullshit. I don’t know where I was when the writer’s strike went into effect, and I really don’t care. But I do know what Joss Whedon, the creator of such TV classics as “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” and “Firefly,” was doing: he was devising a 40-minute Internet series titled, Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog, which, after being released in 2008, went on to be a critically acclaimed, Emmy winning show.
I had heard of it but never watched it, despite the rave reviews and the presence of the man of men, the Neil Patrick Harris. Harris plays the title character, a wannabe super villain who wants to get admitted to the Evil League of Evil, but whose maniacal plans continue to be thwarted by the handsome and perfect Captain Hammer (played by “Firefly” star Nathan Fillion). More importantly, he is working up the confidence to talk to his laundromat soul mate Penny, played by Felicia Day.
The musical is deliciously entertaining, with funny songs, goofy performances and surprisingly decent production values given its low budget and short filming period. Harris and Fillion are terrific in their respective roles, embracing the silliness of the entire concept. Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog is one of the most enjoyable things I’ve seen in recent memory.
The Blu-Ray includes over 90 minutes of bonus material, including a funny musical commentary called “Commentary! The Musical.” This commentary, which is a musical if you hadn’t figured this out, essentially gives audiences an alternate soundtrack to the three-part series. The Blu-Ray says this is “NEW” music, but the DVD, which has been available since December 2008, has the same bonus feature.
In addition to the musical commentary, a regular commentary by the cast and crew is also included, along with a making-of featurette and some funny “Evil League of Evil Application Videos.”
The Blu-Ray may not extend the bonus features provided on the DVD, but if you have yet to see Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog, it is well worth renting, if not buying.
Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog comes to Blu-Ray on May 25, 2010 and is now available for purchase on Amazon.com.