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Hour: Season 2

4.8 out of 5 stars 36 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Hour, The: Season Two (2012/BBC/DVD)

Critical favorite The Hour returns for more drama and intrigue on DVD January 8! Season two rejoins The Hour team in 1957 where we are introduced to new characters played by Peter Capaldi (The Thick Of It, The Nativity) Hannah Tointon (The Inbetweeners) and Tom Burke (State of Play). They strive to broadcast the stories they believe in at the same time they grapple with the looming specter of the Cold War and changing social mores. With the advent of space race and the threat of nuclear annihilation forever looming, Britain grapples with an era of unprecedented scientific advancement, economic opportunity and cultural change in the face of new immigration from the Commonwealth. At the same time, the members of The Hour team live in a world of cover-ups, sexual intrigues and lurking fascism.


Special Features


Product Details

  • Actors: Various
  • Directors: Various
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Color, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 2
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: BBC Home Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: January 8, 2013
  • Run Time: 360 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (36 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #41,860 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD Verified Purchase
The minute I saw the preview for season one in 2011 this show was on my radar as a 'Must See', and it did not disappoint. After the season ended, I immediately pre-ordered the DVDs and have watched them repeatedly.

This year The Hour has returned with season two, and I have to say it has only stepped up it's game (which was a TALL order to accomplish in my book seeing as how I adored season one). In my foray through the world of tv I have found time and again that it is a rare show indeed that only gets better with season two, and this show is one of those rare gems. There is a reason it has received critical acclaim.

The writing is done brilliantly by Abi Morgan (Shame, The Iron Lady). It never fails to grip me and draw me into the characters and the conflicts which they face. What impresses me the most is both the dynamic writing for all of the characters and the fact that the historical setting (this year being the Cold War) is never romanticized, but examined through the eyes of these characters for it's unflattering qualities as it interweaves with the story line.

In addition, the cast is made up of some of the most talented actors of our time, headed by Ben Whishaw (Bright Star, Skyfall), Romola Garai (Emma, Atonement), and Dominic West (The Wire). These characters (and all the characters) are beautifully sculpted. Through both the performances of the actors and the writing given to them, we are made to care deeply about these flawed, realistic individuals working tirelessly to bring the truth to the people in the world of journalism where honesty isn't always regarded as the best policy.

Freddie Lyon brings all the heart to the show, as Bel brings the know how and strength to steer the ship that is 'The Hour'.
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Format: DVD
Season 2 of The Hour will appeal to anybody who liked season 1, though in some respects it's quite a different program. It's much more of a thriller than a mystery (after the first two episodes, anyway). It involves the culture of celebrity and domestic corruption much more than superpower politics. Most significantly, the plot has much more to do with Hector and Marnie Madden than Freddie and Bel. Oona Chaplin steals the show almost as much as Ben Whishaw and Anna Chancellor did in season 1, and Dominic West gets some great scenes playing off of her (his final scene with her in episode 6 is striking and memorable, and his best work so far in this program).

The ending of season 2 is much more tense and scary than anything in season 1. There's nothing in this season as inexplicable as the suicide of Thomas Kish in season 1. It holds together pretty well.

I can't discuss the weak points without giving away much of the plot. Suffice it to say that I would have had some of the personal relationships between the characters play out differently.

If they make season 3, I'll watch it.
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Format: DVD
When the BBC period drama "The Hour" premiered on American TV last year, critics were quick to draw comparisons to AMC's "Mad Men." While both shows might appeal to the same adult demographic, however, I never really gave much credence to this categorization. In fact, the two shows have little in common aside from being period piece dramas bolstered by an easy social atmosphere of drinking and smoking. While there is plenty of workplace intrigue inherent in both shows, Season One of "The Hour" also mixed in a fair share of government espionage. It introduced us to the birth of a TV newsmagazine show called The Hour (how appropriate) as it struggled to find its footing. With the six new episodes of Season Two, The Hour is battling to remain relevant in an increasingly competitive TV market (a timely subject that never seems to go out of style). Principle story threads include a nefarious local business man, a honey pot scandal, police corruption, racial unrest, as well as unexpected office romances and personal secrets revealed.

At the heart of "The Hour," Romola Garai continues to impress as a headstrong producer who is not afraid to make difficult choices for the program's integrity. Dominic West, as the host, is now a full-fledged celebrity stepping out to fashionable nightspots and receiving copious amounts of media scrutiny. And back on the scene is investigative reporter Ben Whishaw, who returns to The Hour with a new role and a pretty big personal surprise for Garai. Their unrequited love affair (or is it just a friendship?) gets quite a bit of play in these six episodes. When a dancer at a local club meets with an act of violence, West becomes an immediate suspect.
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I looked forward eagerly to Season Two of "The Hour", the first season of which I found absolutely riveting, watching it from beginning to end, and then re-watching it.

Although I found series two, which explores the politics of fear in the international race for the bomb, absorbing, I didn't think that the scenario was as tightly constructed as that of series one--perhaps too many subplots suggested, but because of the constraints of a six-part series, left unexplored.

As with the first series, the characters are well developed. The acting, in fact, is is flawless, particularly Peter Capaldi, the director of programming who replaced Anton Lesser (whose character is presumably being detained at Her Majesty's pleasure) and Anna Chancellor, who plays the cynical Lix, and this series reveals one of the reasons behind her chain-smoking cynicism.

The second series explores the troubled relationship between news anchor Hector and his unhappy wife. Dominic West manages to temper Hector's overweening ego with the vulnerability of a little boy lost, eventually rediscovering his long-buried generosity of spirit. Vincent Riotta displays a subtle menace as the owner of a trendy Soho night club (the elegance of which cannot quite hide its seediness), and we discover that there is more to Westminster spin doctor (to apply a term unknown in the 50s) Angus McCain--Julian Rhind-Tutt--than he would prefer the public to know. Hannah Tointon is convincing and moving in her role as a showgirl whose aspirations to climb the social ladder seem likely to be doomed, and the ensemble cast of the 'Hour Team' gives us an impression that we are 'backstage' at a working BBC production.
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