"JAG" (Judge Advocate General - essentially, the legal arm of the military - in this case, the Navy) is a CBS series (the show ran from 1995-2005) created by famed TV producer Donald P. Bellisario ("Quantum Leap", "Magnum PI", "Airwolf", "Battlestar Galactica") and a series that has already resulted in one spin-off ("NCIS"). The first season of the series was on NBC, who cancelled it after one season. CBS decided that the series was worth saving and was rewarded, as the show proceeded to run for another 9 seasons on the network.
In the series, the characters - lead by Lieutenant Commander Harmon "Harm" Rabb Jr. (David James Elliott) - go around the globe to track down leads on various crimes that are largely related to either a threat to the US or a crisis at a base. At the end of the fourth season, "Harm" left JAG to return to the skies after a vision problem was fixed and he felt as if he was up to flying again. However, once he gets back in active duty, he quickly finds out things have changed and gets caught up in a case where a young pilot mistakenly shoots down Russian peacekeepers. After getting some bad news about his career, he wants a return to JAG, which occurs 4 episodes in.
In his old position, he's accompanied by Colonel Sarah "Mac" MacKenzie, USMC (Catherine Bell), as well as: Lieutenant Commander Bud Roberts, (played by Patrick Labyorteaux) and Lieutenant Harriett Sims (Karri Turner). The season sees the group heading off to investigate a series of crimes that are somewhat similar to the show's usual efforts, including: getting trapped aboard a ship while questioning a petty officer accused of murder ("Cabin Pressure"), Bud and Harm travel to Australia to defend an American accused of murdering an Aussie sailor decades ago ("Boomerang", a 2-parter), a controversial case involving the son of the Secretary of the Navy ("The Return"), a colorful character who tests military security steals a sub with Bud on it ("Rogue") and an episode regarding a Navy SEAL previously awarded the Medal of Honor who is charged with assaulting a politician he claims lied about his military experience.
The series does offer viewers a solid mix of intrigue, drama and occasional action, with solid performances from a great ensemble cast. Bell and Elliott offer commanding, engaging performances and have solid chemistry with one another. They are backed up by a terrific supporting cast that play off one another quite well, too. Technically, the show is solid, with impressive production design, cinematography and costume work. Overall, "JAG" remains consistently entertaining at the mid-way point of the series here, as the writing continues to be strong and the cast grows more comfortable in their roles.
86. 5- 1 21 Sep 99 King of the Greenie Board (1)
87. 5- 2 28 Sep 99 Rules of Engagement (2)
88. 5- 3 5 Oct 99 True Callings
89. 5- 4 12 Oct 99 The Return
90. 5- 5 19 Oct 99 Front and Center
91. 5- 6 2 Nov 99 Psychic Warrior
92. 5- 7 9 Nov 99 Rogue
93. 5- 8 16 Nov 99 The Colonel's Wife
94. 5- 9 23 Nov 99 Contemptuous Words
95. 5-10 30 Nov 99 Mishap
96. 5-11 14 Dec 99 Ghosts of Christmas Past
97. 5-12 11 Jan 00 Into the Breech
98. 5-13 18 Jan 00 Life or Death
99. 5-14 1 Feb 00 Cabin Pressure
100. 5-15 8 Feb 00 Boomerang (1)
101. 5-16 15 Feb 00 Boomerang (2)
102. 5-17 22 Feb 00 People v. Gunny
103. 5-18 29 Feb 00 The Bridge at Kang So Ri
104. 5-19 28 Mar 00 Promises
105. 5-20 4 Apr 00 Drop Zone
106. 5-21 25 Apr 00 The Witches of Gulfport
107. 5-22 2 Mar 00 Overdue and Presumed Lost
108. 5-23 9 May 00 Real Deal SEAL
109. 5-24 16 May 00 Body Talk
110. 5-25 23 May 00 Surface Warfare
VIDEO: "JAG" is presented by Paramount Home Entertainment in 1.78:1 anamorphic widescreen. Presentation quality was above-average, as sharpness and detail were mostly terrific. Although a few shots look a tad softer than the rest, most scenes boast fine detail and definition. No edge enhancement was seen, but some slight artifacting was spotted in a few scenes. Colors appeared accurately presented, looking rich and warm, with excellent saturation and no smearing or other problems.
SOUND: The show is presented in Dolby 2.0. The show's soundtrack is largely front-heavy, with the rears only picking up some work to reinforce the score and offer some minor ambience. Audio quality was fine, with crisp dialogue and effects.
EXTRAS: Gag reel.
Final Thoughts: Overall, "JAG" remains consistently entertaining at the mid-way point of the series here, as the writing continues to be strong and the cast grows more comfortable in their roles. The DVD presentation offers fine audio/video quality, but it's too bad that the extra features come up short, as some retrospective interviews or "making of" featurettes regarding some of the more complex episodes would have been interesting. Still, recommended for fans.