14th Apr2014

‘Leverage: Complete Season 5′ DVD Review

by Paul Metcalf

Stars: Timothy Hutton, Gina Bellman, Aldis Hodge, Christian Kane, Beth Riesgraf | Created by Chris Downey, John Rogers

leverage-season-5

When a show reaches its final season there is an inevitability that things could end badly, though if you really like the characters you hope now.  With Leverage: Complete Season 5 you would hope that the shows light-hearted sense of humour would mean that everybody ends up safe, but when you get to the final episode this becomes very questionable, though I’m not going to spoil it in a review where I try to say why I liked it.

If you’ve watched any of the prior seasons you already know how Leverage works, but just as before the idea is that a group of criminals have been brought together to help the innocent fight against big companies who use unscrupulous means to get what they want.  The Leverage team are there to make sure this doesn’t go unpunished.  It’s like the UK show Hustle meets the A-Team.

As always with shows like this what makes Leverage works is the characters and the actors who play them.  The man who brought the team together Nathan Ford played by Timothy Hutton is a former insurance investigator which gives him knowledge of many of the schemes that are out there, his right hand woman Sophie (Gina Bellman) is the actress who uses her skills as a way to get the confidence of the people they have targeted.  Then we have the cyber-geek (hacker) Alec Hardson (Aldis Hodge), Eliot Spencer (Christian Kane) the martial arts expert any my personal favourite, the thief Parker (Beth Riesgraf).

The reason I call Parker my favourite is because she is the character with the most depth.  Somewhat brainwashed from an early age to not feel emotion, in this season Nathan decides to make her more important to the team.  This includes bringing her out of herself and allowing her to understand not only emotion but how to enjoy herself.  Added to that her quirky nature of being a mixture of both extreme activity fanatic and total psycho she is a fun character, in fact one of the best episodes focuses on her when she has a knee injury and can’t leave the restaurant they now occupy.  Using all of her skills of deduction she manages to not only identify a possible crime in progress but actually deal with it by herself.

Although the fifth season as a whole is a good season, I will say that I did prefer season four more as it was more fun.  If there is one weakness in this last season it is the final episode where the tone just feels wrong for the story, and for the most part the main scheme that is introduced at the start just seems to be ignored.  I can understand that the elements that are focused on are important as a whole and this conclusion has been hinted at through the whole season, but the sudden change in direction story wise led to some confusion.

Even with this weakness aside Leverage: Complete Season 5 is a strong end to the show and leaves it open for a reunion in the future.  I’m not sure if we’ll ever get that, but ending the show in that way keeps a nice feel that the story could still go on.  Still full of pop references and as funny as Leverage ever was, a show that was fun and fairly tapped into what the fans expected from a show like this.  It would be nice if we had more shows like Leverage on TV.

Leverage: Complete Season 5 is available on DVD now.

Review originally posted on PissedOffGeek
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