Reign Blu-raySixteenth century mystery, romance and murder fill the pages of Reign’s scripts. At its heart, the CW drama is a revisionist version of the life of Mary, Queen of Scots, following her arrival in France and her wooing of Prince Francis (Toby Regbo) along with his bastard sibling Bash (Torrance Coombs). Peppered into this story is an evil queen (Megan Follows), a slew of ladies-in-waiting (Celina Sinden, Caitlin Stasey, Anna Popplewell) and a campy version of Nostradamus (Rossif Sutherland).
Reign is a soapy teenage drama, filled with as much historical fiction as historical fact. Part of the fun is found in the music, which juxtaposes period language and settings with an exuberant pop soundtrack. While the show has some serious villains and a few dark subplots, the music helps to lighten the mood, as do the costumes, which mix modern-day flair with a few studio-sewn corsets.
Warner Bros. Home Entertainment’s 5-Disc set comes with a cute little insert identifying each of the cast members, as well as the bonus features available on each disc. Deleted scenes are available on each of the discs, but the bulk of the extras are on the final disc. As a cheaply produced DVD set, the stuff that comes with Reign isn’t particularly compelling and the menu screen looks downright shoddy. You may be better off streaming the series digitally than catching it on DVD, as the series, with its glitzy costumes and spectacular views of court life, will certainly benefit from HD picture.
You can order Reign: The Complete First Season over at Amazon.
Best Special Feature: "The Authenticity of Reign" is probably the best extra on the disc. As executive producer Brad Silberling notes, the show was created to be "an imaginative exploration of what one has not seen before." Basically, everyone involved knows the show is not realistic and is not trying to be realistic. Yet, it’s still a 16th century drama, and the crew got to have fun with ways to light the series involving candlelight and huge windows. The bonus feature is not the best I've ever seen, but it does remind me of all the reasons I like that Reign is a historical retelling and not an accurate period drama.
"Reign: The Making of a Queen"