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DVD Review: Human Target – The Complete First Season

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Written by Pirata Hermosa

Based on a comic book character created in 1972 by Len Wein and Carmine Infantino, Christopher Chance (Mark Valley) is the ultimate bodyguard. Instead of sequestering his charges, he puts them out on full display using them as bait to flush out the would-be assailant. In the original comic he would assume the identity and become the victim, but as mentioned during the DVD commentary it just wouldn’t work well with a TV audience to have the hero changing his identity every episode. In order for a television series to work, a bond with the main character is of utmost necessity.

And bonding is even more important when there are only three major characters. Winston (Chi McBride) is the face of the organization. It’s his job to find the new assignments. He’s also responsible for paying the bills, working his connections at the police department, getting Chance anything he requires for his missions, and sometimes ends up on the front line himself.

The final person in their operation is Guerrero (Jackie Earle Haley). His character is very ambiguous and is best described as a cleaner. While he often helps Chance and Winston in their endeavors, he’s got a lot of other angles that he is working in the background. He doesn’t seem to have any morals and is completely unpredictable.

It’s very unique to have such a small cast, but the relationships between the three men really work for this type of show. It’s shot like a feature-length action film, kind of like a combination of James Bond and Indiana Jones. There are always a number of fights, car chases, explosions, and of course a different pretty woman every week. You can also expect at least one stunt to press the envelope on what’s truly possible.

There are only a few deleted scenes on the DVD that could have been edited into the episodes and would not have changed the story or added anything new. Other than that there are only a couple of Special Features.

“Confidential Informant” is a discussion with cast and crew about the idea behind the series, who Chance really is and how the three characters interact with one another. There is quite a bit of insight into the characters and brings up some interesting information about each one, giving a new perspective of why they have come together.

“Full Contact Television” focuses on the action sequences, how they are done, where they come up with ideas, and why it’s unique to the television genre. The coolest thing to learn from this is the fact that Mark Valley does nearly all of his own stunts. Not too many actors can say that.

Human Target is exactly what it says it is. It’s a series of mini-action films that you can sit down and enjoy at any time. You don’t need to follow a complicated plotline and if you miss an episode you won’t lose any of the story. The action sequences and special effects are of superior quality and you won’t find yourself getting bored or distracted.

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