DVD Review: Latest Seasons of CW Shows ‘Nikita,’ ‘Hart of Dixie’

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CHICAGO – Every year from about February to May, TV pundits play the cancellation game. We look at the ratings, read about picked-up pilots, and try to figure out what the networks will renew and cancel. Two of the biggest question marks of this past season were The CW’s “Hart of Dixie” and “Nikita,” but they were both spared the sharp end of the axe and are returning this month to the air. Why? What did the networks and fans see in them? Check out the first season of “Hart of Dixie” on DVD and the second season of “Nikita,” available on Blu-ray and DVD, to find out.

Which one’s better? They’re so different that it’s hard to compare but they’re both shows that are driven by their lead stars — Rachel Bilson on “Hart” and Maggie Q on “Nikita.” And they’re both shows that struggle with plotting but are often carried by pure star power. “Nikita” is better made. “Dixie” can be satisfying in an old-fashioned way. I wouldn’t have shed a tear if either were canceled but I understand why The CW chose them over a more troubled program like “Ringer.” There’s room for improvement here.

I will say that I’ll never understand Warner Bros.’ release pattern, one that decides that fans of “Nikita” get their favorite show on Blu-ray, DVD, & Ultraviolet but fans of “Dixie” are stuck with standard only. That’s just silly. “Nikita” undeniably has the stronger home release, if just for the HD and Ultraviolet option, which allows for streaming on PS3s and iOS through Vudu. Take “Nikita” everywhere but leave “Dixie” at home.

Hart of Dixie: The Complete First Season was released on DVD on October 2, 2012
Hart of Dixie: The Complete First Season was released on DVD on October 2, 2012
Photo credit: Warner Bros.

“Hart of Dixie: The Complete First Season”

Rachel Bilson leads a stellar ensemble cast in this fish-out-of-water comedic drama about small-town living, big-city attitudes and complicated love triangles. Beautiful, privileged and talented, lifelong New Yorker Dr. Zoe Hart (Bilson) is set on becoming a heart surgeon, just like her father. But when she’s told she doesn’t have the requisite bedside manner to receive an important fellowship, she unexpectedly finds herself in Tiny BlueBell, Alabama — a place where she will learn to be a better doctor and a better person, and maybe even fall in love. All 22 Season One episodes are full of laughs, life, and Hart!

Special Features:
o Straight from the Hart of Dixie
o Shut Your Mouth! Gag Reel
o Unaired Scenes

Nikita: The Complete Second Season was released on Blu-ray and DVD on October 2, 2012
Nikita: The Complete Second Season was released on Blu-ray and DVD on October 2, 2012
Photo credit: Warner Bros.

“Nikita: The Complete Second Season”

It’s Nikita vs. Alex! In Season 2, Nikita’s protégée, Alex, may become her most lethal foe. Teamed with Michael and Birkhoff, Nikita is still on the outside, determined to destroy the black ops agency Division. But this time, Alex is on the inside, using the agency to seek revenge on her father’s killers. Alex now needs and defends Division, and she knows all of Nikita’s tricks. Plus, stunning secrets from the past - from the family Michael didn’t know he had to the family Alex thought she’d lost - draw everyone deeper into a sinister web of betrayal and payback. In 23 explosive episodes, Season 2 is alive with all the nonstop action and drop-dead sex appeal that make Nikita the go-to show for excitement, thrills and intrigue.

Special Features:
o What If? Writing The Fate Of Division: Series Creator Criag Silverstein and Other Series Writers Explore the Impact of the Show’s Strong Female Lead Characters
o Living The Life: Maggie Q - Behind The Scenes With The Star
o Episode Commentary For The Season Finale
o Gag Reel
o Unaired Scenes

“Hart of Dixie: The Complete First Season” was released on DVD only and “Nikita: The Complete Second Season” was released on Blu-ray and DVD on October 2, 2012.

HollywoodChicago.com content director Brian Tallerico

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