Studio:A&E Year: 2011 Cast: Dave Hester, Darrell Sheets, Jarrod Schultz, Brandi Passante, Barry Weiss Director: Release Date: July 17, 2012 Rating: Not Rated for (suggestive humor, mild language) Run Time: 05h:36m:51s Genre(s): television
"This locker has a little bit of everything. It's crapping cash." - Darrell Sheets
One of the hottest shows on cable returns in this 2-disc set featuring the second half of season two. It may be reality television, though recent events have raised questions about whether there's more "television" than "reality."
Movie Grade: B
DVD Grade: C+
There's not a lot more to say about Storage Wars in its second season that didn't apply to season one. Dave Hester is still irascible and hates pretty much everyone involved, Darrell Sheets is still the poster boy for blowhard hairy-backed men in muscle shirts, Jarrod and Brandi are still mocking each others' skills (though their resale shop doubles in size in this volume, making their approach to winning storage lockers a little different), and Barry Weiss still does what he can to disrupt them and try to steal away some storage lockers and their contents before the others know what's happening. If you liked the show before, this is more of the same. A new bidder, Nabila, who made a splash selling Paris Hilton's locker for more than a million dollars, joins the group on several episodes. She's a practiced hand with over 20 years of storage locker experience, though she doesn't really have the vibrant character of the main group. She does, however, have Hester's grudging respect.
What really makes this volume interesting is that one can see beneath the surface the friction between Hester and the show that culminated in the recent filing of a lawsuit by Hester alleging that the show is entirely phony, the lockers are seeded with valuables by the producers, and that weaker bidders get funding to win lockers that they wouldn't be able to purchase otherwise. That puts one to the question of what the appeal of reality television really is, and whether it needs to be real to keep that appeal.
I have to say that I was initially disappointed to hear these allegations, whether or not they are true. But I read about Hester's allegations halfway through viewing the set, and once I started up again, I got back involved in the onscreen shenanigans nearly as much as I had before. I did notice that although there are quite a few people at the auction, only rarely does anyone other than the principals bid on camera. So I do have some questions that don't seem to be answered by editing. But does it make a difference in the long run? The relationships are still interesting and insults are amusing, whether or not they're genuine. The thrill of the auction is still there, as is the discovery of random stuff found in lockers. In the long run, I'm afraid I don't much care if there's much reality behind this television. I'll still be watching season 3.
The transfer is serviceable, with good color and crisp detail. The disc includes English and Spanish subtitles. There are also a half-dozen featurettes on various topics such as the importance of teamwork between Jarrod and Brandi and Darrell and son Brandon. One featurette also features more of guest star Stewart Copeland, for Police fans.