While the ABC brought us the complete first series of SeaChange in a single foldout digipak, they've split the second series into two separate conventionally-packaged sets.
There were six episodes in the first package, and seven in the second. Hard to understand the rationale - if you're really itching to have Part One of the second set, that itch certainly will still be there until you have Part Two as well. And the packaging for Series One was a lot more handsome than these conventional sets.
Anyway, here's Part Two of Series Two, and the overall quality - casting, scrptlines - is fully maintained.
It's useless discussing storylines. The unfolding of layers within the characters as the series progresses is more important.
Diver Dan has gone, replaced by journalist Max (William McInnes), but the relationship which develops between him and Laura (Sigrid Thornton) is subordinate in this series to other rich characterisations - as Heather Jelly (Kerry Armstrong) comes to grips with the truth about her parents and Bob Jelly (John Howard) tries to deal with the new person he has discovered is his wife.
The final episode is a ripper. A desperate person has laid siege in the courthouse, holding hostages until an unlikely swag of demands is met. A very very desperate person indeed - and the hostages are determined to protect their captor, and make sure the demands are met.
For this episode, the series' creator, Deb Cox, returns as writer and co-director. The episode nicely sets the stage for the final series of SeaChange - there are 13 more episodes to come, and then the little town of Pearl Bay will have gone forever, leaving only the memory of one of the most delightful escapist creations of Australian television ever.
The full screen image is sharp and clear, with fine colour detail.
As with the previous series, it is astonishing that the ABC did not have the foresight to film these episodes in widescreen, with an eye to future commercial exploitation. As it is, these packages present the series in best possible condition.
The two-channel Dolby Digital stereo is crisp and clear, with maximum clarity needed for a mainly dialogue-driven series. There's nothing exceptional here, just high-quality television-standard audio.
If you have Part One of this second series of SeaChange, then purchase of this second set is virtually obligatory.
The one advantage of having the series split into two sets is that it presents a much more feasible rental option than a combined 13-episode set.