DVDs in Review #3 - Skins: The Complete First Series

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My father twigged me onto Skins. He thinks it's utterly brilliant, while he has a strange dislike of American comedies (He'll watch American Sci-Fi no issues...) and as such won't watch Arrested Development... He does have good taste in television, so when I saw the complete series for $24 I thought "Why not?"

Skins comes in the plastic book form packaging. It's a two page book, with a pair of the DVDs on one side and the third one on the other, this comes in the now standard cardboard dust-sleeve. At first I was a little confused by the presence of three DVDs, but once I watched the 3rd DVD I understood why it had 3 instead of 2. It takes up a minimal amount of space on the shelf and is pretty nice to look at. The box art is functional and gives you a good idea of what to expect. Other shows should take note as this a very well put together piece of packaging.


On a side note, which is not related directly to Skins itself. I still don't understand why manufacturers of DVDs feel the need to use such long boxes. They really should switch to CD case sized boxes, especially for films which normally use a single dvd. This would decrease the amount of space a DVD takes up on a shelving unit and allow for more shelves to be used.

At first I wasn't that impressed with the special features on the Skins DVDs, the first two discs are lacking in any such things. They contain only the episodes and subtitles. But that's because the DVD designers decided to place all the special features onto the the third DVD. There are plenty of the usual options here, but the most impressive section is called Ancillary Stories and is essentially deleted scenes that have been edited up and put together then broadcast online. They fit into the main stories very well and if you pay attention to the main episodes you can see the points where they join up. Top stuff.


Skins is essentially a British comedy drama about teens in college. It stars Nicholas Hoult (from about a boy) as Tom, who's supposed to be the desirable & likeable but nasty lad. My first words when I saw him on screen were "Didn't he turn out ugly?" So that made it pretty difficult to swallow how he was supposed to be this heart throb. But I suspended disbelief and carried on.
Of course, the real star of the show is Mike Bailey in the role of Sid, who very much reminded me of Adrian Mole or the lead character in the TV version of "Teenage Health Freak" (whos name escapes me completely). He's very sympathetic, I guess more so for me because he reminds me of me (even if he looks and dresses like my brother).
The show is very much an Ensemble show in nature, with each episode focusing on the problems of one character in close detail. This brings a great deal of variety to the show and allows each cast member to shine in the spotlight.

The show is funny, clever and touching all at once. It reminds me of my times in late adolescence and is quite brilliant. If not as amazing as my Father makes out I still enjoyed it a lot. At some point I'll write a "Why you should watch" on this show. But this month is going to be about DVDs in review.


At £12 for the complete first series this comes out at £1.30 ish per episode, but you also get the Ancillary episodes which work out at around 1 extra episodes worth of viewing. So I'll call this £1.20 per episode which at 1 hour per episode is a very respectable 2p per minute.

That puts it as the current front runner for value (out of 3 shows so far :P) by a huge gap. As such I need to give this:



Packaging: 9.5
Features: 8
Show: 7.5
Price: 10
Overall: 87.5%

That's a pretty strong showing for this little British underdog show. The sheer value for money is a huge factor (other companies take note!). As such, I wish it much success and look forward to picking up the next season on DVD.


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