fbpx

Seven Days: The Complete Series (DVD boxset review).

June 13, 2020 | By | 1 Reply More

It’s hard to believe that these three seasons of ‘Seven Days’ were from 1998-2001, let alone that it took so long for a DVD boxset to be released and then stupidly only region 1 and the long river website unable to deliver it abroad. It took a few years and a bit of luck to get this boxset. I know there were contractual difficulties that prevented a fourth season but watching the third season, we missed out the potential of seeing Sergei Chubais (actor Mischa Collins, later of ‘Supernatural’) come back as a potential recurring villain.

Rebellious mental patient and former CIA/military SEAL officer Frank B. Parker (actor Jonathan LaPaglia) is one of five selected by the NSA as a possible candidate for Project Backstep to travel in a time travel machine with a power source from Roswell after the American President and later, his Chief Of Staff, are assassinated. While the candidates are being reduced, the terrorists and their plans information are being brought together to provide the time travel for the first manned test run of their time machine into the past.

This is later shown to be incorrect, there were nine previous chronoauts but Parker is the only successful one. The only limit it has is it can only go back seven days and the spatial manipulation means they can’t always predict where it will crash to earth, although they do improve. You have to be insane for such a suicidal mission, not to mention seeing things being re-written all the time. Having a high pain threshold, IQ and a photographic memory are good assets. One slight problem is Parker is also a bit of a jerk, much to the distain of security chief Nathan Ramsey (actor Nick Searcy), who is an even bigger jerk, much of the time.

Oddly, with the second episode, ‘The Gettysburg Virus’ indicates that we haven’t seen all the backsteps after Parker was recruited. This is also one episode that deserves a rewatch by everyone showing the effects of an experimental embola plague killing the world’s population in less than a week by infecting flight hostesses at an airport. With our current crisis, we’ve had it light so far in comparison but shows how far dangerous it could be otherwise.

There is always a question as why Ramsey is tolerated until you come to the episode ‘Shadowplay’ where his unit investigates an NSA plot and, although he is a jerk, he is also pretty effective and obeys his boss, Talmadge (actor Alan Scarfe) when drawn into line.

Now here’s an interesting quandary. The Roswell alien spacecraft power crystal that supplies the energy to propel Parker into the past has only a limited amount of energy so they have to be cautious how often they use it and letting it recharge, despite the capsule being capable of holding a reserve amount of energy. However, boosting Parker into the past also means they have effectively used one less energy burst unless the crystal usage is counted in a different way and measures its own temporal output. After all, when he travels into the past, both Parker and the sphere effectively vanish before reappearing in the past or rather the seven day back present, so the team knows something has happened and wait for his phone message as to what is needed. Presumably, the crystal is also affected by the time distortion.

It’s rather interesting seeing how various pieces of information is revealed to the viewer. Things aren’t left standing still all the time and spatial movement gets better controlled over the seasons. It doesn’t hold back at addressing different problems with time travel, including the toil on Parker himself. I suspect his heavy drinking, gambling, etc are his release valves considering how much he is restricted to base.

In some respects, many of the supporting cast get reduced appearances over the seasons, although they do get to shine from time to time. Dr. Olga Vukavitch’s appearances grow, more so as actress Justina Vail earned a Saturn Award for Best Supporting Actress. Hardly surprising when you look at season one’s episode, ‘There’s Something About Olga’ playing her own scary psychopath double and smashing her head against a window.

In the UK, we never had the last two seasons so I did wonder if the standard would be maintained. I wasn’t disappointed, although oddly, the final episode was one of the oddest but I don’t think the producers realised it wouldn’t be coming back.

The real puzzle is why the DVD release was limited to the USA and strictly Region 1 as it is one of the best SF series from the turn of the century. If you can lay your hands on the boxset and can adjust your DVD player in the UK then it’s worth the effort. Let’s do it again.

GF Willmetts

June 2020

(region 1 DVD: pub: CBS, 2018. 12 DVDs 65 * 48 minute episodes. Price: really does varies if you can find it. ASIN: VE7108)

cast: Jonathan LaPaglia, Justine Vail, Don Franklin, Nick Searcy, Norman Lloyd, Sam Whipple and Alan Scarfe

check out website: www.VEI.tv – you can buy direct from them stateside

Tags:

Category: Scifi, TV

About the Author ()

Geoff Willmetts has been editor at SFCrowsnest for some 15 plus years now, showing a versatility and knowledge in not only Science Fiction, but also the sciences and arts, all of which has been displayed here through editorials, reviews, articles and stories. With the latter, he has been running a short story series under the title of ‘Psi-Kicks’ If you want to contribute to SFCrowsnest, read the guidelines and show him what you can do. If it isn’t usable, he spends as much time telling you what the problems is as he would with material he accepts. This is largely how he got called an Uncle, as in Dutch Uncle. He’s not actually Dutch but hails from the west country in the UK.

Comments (1)

Trackback URL | Comments RSS Feed

  1. Rob Blake says:

    What I want to know is … where is the DVD set of The Secret Adventures of Jules Verne?

Leave a Reply

SFcrowsnest