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The Dresden Files: Season 1 (2007)

Paul Blackthorne , Valerie Cruz  |  NR |  DVD
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1,545 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Paul Blackthorne, Valerie Cruz
  • Format: Multiple Formats, AC-3, Closed-captioned, Color, Dolby, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1
  • Number of discs: 3
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: Lions Gate
  • DVD Release Date: August 7, 2007
  • Run Time: 530 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1,545 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000QUEQ4U
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #13,512 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "The Dresden Files: Season 1" on IMDb

Special Features

  • Audio Commentary
  • A "Making of" Featurette
  • Deleted Scenes

Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Based on Jim Butcher's best-selling novels, "The Dresden Files" chronicles the cases of no ordinary detective. Harry Dresden (Paul Blackthorne) is a wizard, the only one listed in the Chicago phone book. He's got a handle on the crimes that can't be solved by anyone else. Paranormal? No problem. Dresden deals in all matters of supernatural threats. If you need a little hocus pocus or some other worldly advice, Dresden's your man.

The Dresden Files is about a wizard named Harry. "Good marketing," a cynical observer notes in one episode from the Sci-Fi Channel's one-season wonder based on the books by Jim Butcher. "Couldn't you come up with something a little more original?" Actually, this series manages to be plenty original despite echoes of The X-Files and the 1970s cult classic The Night Stalker. Paul Blackthorne stars as Harry Dresden, a scruffy Chicago private eye whose gift comes in handy for children menaced by skinwalkers, or for offering Lt. Murphy (Valerie Cruz) of the Chicago police "an unconventional point of view" concerning grisly, bizarre cases involving werewolves, vampires, and other decidedly unfriendly spirits. The Dresden Files is a paranormal noir (para-noir?) that deftly balances genuine scares, hard-boiled moxie, and tongue-in-cheek humor, delivered with panache by "Bob" (Terrance Mann), an ancient English spirit who resides in a skull and gives.Harry supernatural assistance. Harry's backstory--magician father, wizard mother, treacherous uncle--is revealed over the course of these 12 episodes. The eighth broadcast episode, "Things That Go Bump," was reportedly intended as the series pilot, and may be the best place to start. But Harry's world-weary voice-over in the classic tradition ("If you're a wizard and you fail, people can end up dead") keeps viewers oriented. Low ratings made The Dresden Files disappear, making this DVD set welcome for the series' hardcore fans who mounted the ultimately unsuccessful letter-writing campaign to save Dresden from the "Brilliant, but Cancelled" files. But even those who are unfamiliar with Butcher's books or are not on the Sci-Fi Channel's wavelength will be charmed. --Donald Liebenson

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
322 of 336 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars High calibur! May 29, 2007
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
After Buffy went off the air, and then Charmed, I despaired of finding a supernatural show with quality writing and great plots. My prayers were answered by the Scifi network with this awesome show.

I was already a fan of the book series and this show does an excellent job of adapting the stories written by Jim Butcher. Like in Charmed, magic exists but regular people don't know about it. Harry Dresden is the only Wizard P.I. in the phone book. Most think he's a crack pot, but some know he is their only hope. He works as a consultant to the police via Det. Murphy on those cases considered bizarre. Along the way there are werewolf serial killers, vampire club owners, and innocents that need to be protected.

The show doesn't overdo the special effects, rather using them less frequently but with greater impact. Which is actually in keeping with the books. Harry is faithfully recreated and played by Paul Blackstone. And then there is Bob. The portrayal of Bob is one of those rare instances where a book character has been drastically changed, but in a good way. In the books he is an incorporeal spirit residing in a skull. This is fine in the books where a reader's imagination is boosting the concept, but would not translate well to TV. Producers cleverly decided to make him a human-looking ghost with a dry wit and snappy dialog. They did it so well, Bob quickly became my favorite character!

If you like fantasy or scifi shows, get the Dresden Files. And when you can't get enough of Harry, get the books.
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108 of 110 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Show in the Wrong Order August 8, 2007
I love the Dresden Files and was shocked to hear it hadn't been renewed for a second season. To add insult to this injury, when I received my DVD set, I found out that they hadn't ordered the series (which ran out of sequence) on the DVDs. A suggested viewing order would be as follows:

Storm Front (espisode 8) is #1
Rules of Engagement (episode 4) is #2
Birds of a Feather (episode 1) is #3
The Boone Identity (episode 2) is #4
Hair of the Dog (episode 3) is #5
Walls (episode 7) is #6
Bad Blood (episode 5) is #7
Soul Beneficiary (episode 6) is #8
What about Bob? (episode 10) is #9
The Other Dick (episode 9) is #10
Things that go Bump (episode 11) is #11
Second City (episode 12) is #12

I'd planned to watch them in sequence in anticipation of the new season, now I'll watch them in sequence to enjoy a series that ended much too soon. Thank goodness I still have the books!
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152 of 160 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Conjure at your own risk! May 22, 2007
Given the shakey start from having episodes juxtaposed in viewing order this season really took off with a bang! After watching just the first episode it intrigued me enough to want to go out and buy the whole series of books by Jim Butcher and I was not disappointed. Absolute page turners mixed with great characters, sly wit, wicked sarcasm, fantastic magic, and of course -- Bob! I really like how the TV show transformed the simple talking skull into a viewable character, played by none other than the superbly casted, Terrance Mann. And of course Paul Blackthorne as Harry Dresden was a brilliant decision. He has managed to capture Harry's self-depracating humor, sarcasm, and flair for drama and magic along with his vulnerable side and inevitable confrontation with the forces of evil. If you enjoy the books you will love the great adaptation they have done on bringing the world of the Dresden Files to life on screen. Given they showed the original pilot out of order as Episode 8 and trimmed down to 40 minutes from the original 2 hours, I can't wait to see the bonus features on this disc! A wizard detective in modern day Chicago... what else could you ask for?
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129 of 139 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars It's magic June 24, 2007
Imagine if Harry Potter grew up to be Philip Marlowe, and you'll have a pretty good idea of what "The Dresden Files" is like.

While it starts weakly -- and is rarely faithful to Jim Butcher's novels -- "The Dresden Files" manages to whip itself into a solid supernatural-mystery series, with a pretty good cast and some genuinely twisty-turny mysteries. And, of course, a snarky ghost living inside a skull.

Harry Dresden (Paul Blackthorne) is Chicago's only wizard-for-hire, with a tragic past, a hockey-stick staff, and a companion spirit named Bob who lives in a skull (Terrence Mann). He's also perpetually in bad with the wizard council, and moderately famous among the supernatural crowds lurking around Chicago.

As the series opens, Harry is approached by a young boy who claims he's being stalked by otherworldly forces -- and his mother confirms that he's been followed by blackbirds, crows and ravens ever since he was born. Even worse, a skinned body is found in a nearby apartment -- and the malevolent skinwalker who stole the woman's dermis may be after the boy as well.

Arguably the premiere is the weakest of the series, since there's little actual detecting going on. But things perk up in the following episodes. Harry tackles a hellspawn in love, a serial killer murdering werewolves, a bodysnatching murderer, a fertility clinic with a dark secret, a bunch of young thieves using deadly magic, and an attempt to frame Bianca, the sultry vampire club-owner.

Things get even worse when Harry is trapped with a bunch of hostile wizards inside a deadly cloud, which can only have been conjured by one of them. And when Bob is stolen, Harry finds himself confronting his cruel uncle Justin -- whom Harry "self-defensed to death" five years ago.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars LOVE IT, wish it lasted
LOVE IT, wish it lasted longer
Published 5 hours ago by Terry C Wellman
4.0 out of 5 stars If you ignore the title, it's an entertaining series
It is more like an "inspired by" than a real representation of the Dresden Files books, but it's still enjoyable. I actually discovered the books because of this show. Read more
Published 13 hours ago by Matthew J. Evans
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Excellent series. I am grateful to get this for a good price. Fast shipping.
Published 17 hours ago by Beverly Singer
4.0 out of 5 stars Entertaining. Tries hard to bring across some of the ...
Entertaining. Tries hard to bring across some of the stories from the Harry Dresden books that couldn't possibly
be encompassed by a single shows that are less than sixty... Read more
Published 2 days ago by C Davis
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
This was a good series and I wish it had been continued.
Published 5 days ago by John Andrew Buttrick
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Good stuff
Published 13 days ago by John Healey
5.0 out of 5 stars much like supernatural, also failed due to its viewing numbers ...
I am still so unhappy that Dresden Files has not been put on the table for shows to be re-aired.
This show that lasted for only 1 season, much like supernatural, also failed... Read more
Published 14 days ago by goodorbad
1.0 out of 5 stars One Star
Will not run - "Not authorised in your region"
Published 17 days ago by Al Zeltins
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Show!!
I'm sad I came upon this series so late. I wish I could have supported it while it was on air and done something to boost its ratings so that it would not have been cancelled... Read more
Published 17 days ago by Scott Madsen
1.0 out of 5 stars Bait and Switch business model
Like another reviewer so elegantly mentioned, I was shocked and disappointed that after the 5th episode in season one I had to pay for remaining episodes. Read more
Published 18 days ago by MTF
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Topic From this Discussion
Proof that Dresden Files did not die of low ratings
I have believed for decades that television network programing executives have the lowest I.Q.s of any lifeform in the universe, including those that don't actually have brains. The cancelation/non-renewal of this show proves that I'm correct.
Mar 24, 2009 by romanticynic |  See all 39 posts
Editorial review gets it wrong
Yeah, the review posted is pretty much nonsense on every turn. It's based on it's own book series which predates most "Potter-mania" at least in conception, if not publication. Sometimes "cynical observers" are "clueless."

And no, the series didn't fail from low... Read More
May 31, 2009 by S. Gillogly |  See all 2 posts
Real Ending?
I never regretted watching the series. One of those instances when the tv series enhances the books for me because now that I've watched the tv series, I have faces and characters to go with the books and it enhanced the series for me.
May 26, 2008 by dralo |  See all 7 posts
jazz artist
I believe the piece is "Killer Joe". I'm not sure which recording they used. I'm pretty sure it is not the Quincy Jones version. Maybe the recording by Art farmer & Benny Golson is closer.
Best I can do. Good luck!
Jul 22, 2009 by C. L. |  See all 3 posts
Best Order to View Episodes
Even though I bet, you already watched the DVD by now, I still gonna answer:
I read somewhere that the episodes have not been shown in the chronology they had been shot. I've just seen a post on the Dresden Forum on the Sci-Fi website that said that this is the correct chronology:

1] Storm... Read More
Apr 12, 2008 by Polgara |  See all 3 posts
The sort of film Syfy SHOULD make Be the first to reply
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