Flashpoint: The Complete Second Season

Flashpoint: The Complete Second Season
What is most commendable about this Canadian attempt at an inane network police procedural is its ability to dole out 40 minutes of pure exposition from week-to-week. The characters never grow or change enough to warrant consistent viewing, making this the perfect television show for casual, apathetic viewers. And it's fair, for what it is, following a tactical arm of the police as they tackle hostage situations and shootouts at the hands of liberal crazies, making glib political statements about denizen frustration and social injustice in the process. Ed Lane (Hugh Dillon) plays the consistent tough guy to Greg Parker's (Enrico Colantoni) conflicted soul, while Jules Callaghan (Amy Jo Johnson) personifies feminine equality and Sam Braddock (David Paetkau) does his wild card, smug kid routine. They're traditional ciphers, as warranted by a pre-packaged, market calculated template, running around with guns to protect and serve against renegade radio show hosts and ex-military men with a hard on for Maple Leaf Gardens. The baddies of the week are often citizens taking the law into their own hands, frustrated with social justice, creating a duality in ethical posturing to spruce up the monotony of location-based, functional operations dialogue. Season two focuses on cult leaders, eco-terrorists, enraged mothers and neighbourhood vigilantes, amongst others, giving the opportunity for clunky observations about police budget cuts as a blanket reason for Cabbagetown's deterioration and rants about socialist laws that protect criminals. The use of Toronto geography often appeals on a familiarity level, even if a lot of the process-related speak on a financial and legal level sounds more accurate than it really is. Fortunately, they do a good job of general research, masking this lack of detailed knowledge, which ensures that the specifics don't detract from the generalized, propulsive nature of the series. Included with the six-disc DVD set is a Hugh Dillon music video and brief supplements on the stunts and weapons. (Phase 4)