Rescue Me: The Complete Second Season

Rescue Me: The Complete Second Season
Now finally out of the shadow of Denis Leary and Peter Tolan’s failed but favoured other show, The Job, Rescue Me has evolved into a full-fledged marathon of unpredictable events and widespread character development. Thanks to a healthy mix of scripting and improvising, the comedic drama sets aside most of the fire fighting fun in exchange for building on the story arcs of the first season. Again, Leary’s Tommy Gavin is the show-stealer, largely in part because of the comedian’s ability to unite his razor-sharp wit and potty mouth with a flair for dramatic acting he’s seldom recognised for. Season two finds Tommy struggling to cope with his wife running away with his children while battling the bottle and his nagging, pregnant girlfriend. Still haunted by the ghost of his cousin, as well as both Jesus and Mary Magdalene this season, Tommy does get his life back on track, sobering up and reclaiming his family, though not without being struck down by a co-dependency on "uppers” with his wife and a tragedy viewers will never see coming. Tommy’s supporting cast, however, adds more depth to the numerous sub-plots. Perhaps the most interesting storyline is that of Chief Reilly (Jack McGee), the middle-aged hard-ass who now finds himself trying to nurse his Alzheimer’s-affected wife. Still having a conscience with tongue planted firmly in cheek, the show hammers away at social issues, such as racism, sexism, child abuse and bigotry, by using the characters’ unapologetic ignorance as a device that even the most infuriated P.C. campaigners will crack a smile at. The 35 deleted scenes show further proof of the ensemble cast’s importance, allowing more room to shine for some characters that don’t always get the deserved attention. The featurettes dig deep into the inspiration and the writing talents of Leary and Tolan, who have found their stride in scripting the series together, as opposed to the first season’s "on the fly” writing process. (Sony)