Hit & Miss comes to Region Free UK Blu-ray complete with an impressive 1080p High Definition video presentation in the original aspect ratio of 1.78:1 widescreen. Shot in HD, the series looks as good as you would expect; slick and immaculate, with only the production values and setting betraying the limited budget. Detail is very good indeed, with the unusually attentive cinematography showcasing allowing for some particularly impressive fine object detail – especially out in the countryside, where almost every blade of grass comes to life, as the focus shifts between landscape and character appropriately. There’s no sign of any digital defects – no excessive DNR, banding or edge enhancement – and, whilst there’s no denying that this is a gritty, at times grisly, affair, there it doesn’t rely upon drowning you in unruly grain and noise in order to get that message across. Indeed, it’s as clean as Mia’s kills (well, at least, most of them). The colour scheme is restricted by the cold, harsh rural setting, with only the infrequent city nightlife sequences, offering up anything particularly vivid – well, other than Mia’s boots. That said, there are some sparks of colour, and the tones presented within the palette are never less than accurately reflected, all the way up to and including the strong black levels, which allow for impressive darker sequences. There are a couple of lapses in quality, and a few moments across the entire 6-episode run which take the video presentation down a notch but, overall, this is very good indeed, just a couple of ticks away from reference quality material.
The accompanying DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 track does just the trick, and despite being inherently limited by the restricted-budget and restricted format of this kind of TV drama, it makes for an often quite absorbing, atmospheric offering, complete with gusty winds blowing across the wilderness, bustling urban street-noise and plenty of tinny *thaps* (that sound that the slide makes when is slaps back) from silenced gunfire. Dialogue comes across clearly and coherently throughout – largely dominating the frontal array, although the mother’s ‘ghostly’ murmurs do resonate more from the surrounds. Effects are well-observed, and do get a little bit of nice directionality, even if this certainly isn’t the most dynamic presentation. This isn’t the kind of drama that requires a heady mix though, just a pleasant, respectful track with warm ambience. The score grows on you across the show, and never interferes but instead only enhances the proceedings, knowing just the right moments to kick in and add to the tension, action or comedy; and there are frequent song tracks thrown in across the episodes, particularly when the family are having a little reprieve, basking in a brief moment of happiness. Bass isn’t exactly a constant presence, but is never all that far away either, and all in all this is a good, whilst certainly not demo quality, presentation.
Although not packed to the brim with extras, there’s a nice selection of bonus material here, including a bunch of interviews and some footage from the roundtable Q & A hosted during the broadcast premiere.
There’s a selection of four short interviews, with star Chloe Sevigny talking about the challenges of playing a pre-op transsexual, creator Paul Abbott discussing his initial idea, writer Sean Conway talking about how he developed the premise into an ongoing series and producer Juliet Charlesworth offering further background into the production.
Q & A
Recorded at the Mayfair Hotel, hosted by Mariella Frostrup and with participation from Chloe Sevigny, Paul Abbott, Sean Conway, Nicola Shindler, this look behind the show comes in the form of a Q & A shot at the show’s premiere screening in London.
An interesting, at times tragic, at times darkly humorous study of a dysfunctional family, or an offbeat, atypical look at the plight of an experienced, ever-professional hitman whose life is turned upside down when they find out that they have a son they never knew about – Hit & Miss has all this and more. Did I mention that the protagonist is also a pre-op transsexual? This 6-part British mini-series starring Chloe Sevigny is a surprisingly compelling little drama, with plenty of blood, sex and violence, but also a fair amount of heart at the centre of it. As with all good dramas, you’ll be drawn in by the unusual concept, but you’ll stay because of the interesting characters and heartfelt performances. Recommended.
On Region Free UK Blu-ray we get very good video and audio as well as a few nice extras to round off the disc. If you’re a fan of any of creator Paul Abbott’s work (Shameless, Cracker, Clocking Off), are interested in the consistently boundary-pushing work of star Chloe Sevigny, or just like your TV dramas to be a little bit different, then this is certainly worth checking out.
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