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  1. ‘Bout Darn Time”!!! Season two of this amazing series saw a shift in gears as far as the direction of the show. Season one, while a masterpiece, suffered critical hits for taking too long to develop, and thus, perhaps lost some viewership. The not-so-well-kept secret is that time it took to craft the characters is exactly what true fans of the series enjoyed.Some of the deep mystery and magic is gone from the second season, in favor of moving the plot along, but series creator Dan Knauf was so adept at his craft that he never allowed the series to become ho-hum and typical like other network series that delve into fantasy and science fiction.What ultimately killed this series was two-fold. 1. It lost viewers who didn’t want to be bothered with trying to figure the mystery out instead of having it handed to them on a platter and 2. executives who lost their vision as to what the show stood for and didn’t recognize the art for what it was.This show has created a cult following matched by few others in it’s genre. True fans who cry out for more while keeping the vision alive in our minds. Hopefully one day our wishes will be fulfilled, but until then we have memories and two excellant seasons to enjoy.

  2. “When it comes to livin’, dying is the easy part…” There has never been a show that has had such an impact on me like HBO’s “Carnivale.” You can only imagine the heartbreak I went through when I found out that the show would not be renewed for another season. In a world where there is so much pointless garbage on TV with no substance, no emotion and no thinking behind it (again, this is not always a bad thing), it was refreshing to see something that challenged us to the core like “Carnivale” did. At long last, the second season has found its home on DVD.It’s hard to describe such a show without giving too much away, but I will do my best. The first season left off with Ben Hawkins (an unlikely savior and healer) and Brother Justin (a man who once served religion has now found his place along darkness and an ultimate evil)finally realizing their path in life and knowing who they really are. Ben is scared and instructed by the mysterious Management on what he has to do in order to prevent the end of the world as we know it, but Ben is not so sure who is using him and who he can trust. Yet, he knows that the key to the final battle between good and evil is his father, Henry Scudder. The problem is that Brother Justin is also looking for Scudder, as he has some terrible, awful plans of his own for the world. These two are states away, but finally they will meet and the fate of the world ultimately depends on who ends up coming up on top. And that’s only a part of the overwhelming and forceful epic that is known as “Carnivale.”The second season is much more darker and unsettling than the first, and it never slows down. As good as the first season was, the pace was very slow–but it had to be in order to set the pieces into place. A lot of things that didn’t make sense in the first season will come to light in this one. The scenery, the look and feel of it all really cements this as a memorable and solid series that was quite possibly ahead of its time. Not only does this show rely on great and hypnotic writing, but also the actors who give it their all and bring their characters to life. With a show as complex as this, you have to have the writing and the characters, and this show has no problem delivering the goods on that front. The DVD contains all 12 episodes and some very cool “behind the scenes” features that are worth seeing, along with commentaries on selected episodes.”Carnivale” is not a show for everybody. It’s extremely dark, brutal and the themes can get pretty disturbing and unsettling, especially since it deals with the religous and spiritual world. If you are a fan of the first season, then this is a must-see, even if we may never get another season ever again. Sure, not everything will be answered, the last episode does leave us hanging, but all in all this season is very satisfying and is even more exciting and thrilling than the first. If you’re looking for something you’ve never seen before, check it out. I’m just happy the second season has finally found a home. I just wished that such a great show had more of a chance. I don’t think I’ll ever see anything that will ever surpass this, and I believe I will think that way until my last breath. -Michael Crane

  3. After all this time! Thank you! Carnivale is such an amazing show. I ran out immediately and bought the $100 season one as soon as it became available and watched the entire season in one sitting on a Sunday morning prior to the premier of season two. Delving into the first season like this opened up some mysteries to me, and unlocked some clues that I had the luxury of being validated in the first episode of season two.Season Two answered a lot of these burning questions, it raised the stakes of the looming confrontation, it threw in some intriguing twists, and finally gave us an amazing pay-off at the end. The problem is, is that there is still so much more of the story that needs to be told and this fascinating saga is no where near completed.One of the biggest mistakes HBO has ever made was to cancel this series in the heart of its story-telling. Since they’ve done that, I have done everything in my power to distance myself from their programming. How can the company expect a decent amount in DVD sales when the price they decide to charge is obscene? Most consumers immediately realize that they can take their $100 and turn around and buy a 24 episode season of some hit show, and at LEAST three full length feature movies for the same price. Especially in this world of pirated and downloadable media; it appears that HBO is rather naive and making some bad business decisions on bogus data.Regardless of HBO, I will definitely be purchasing this long awaited Season Two of Carnivale on 7/18/2006 and preparing myself for another marathon of watching the enthralling saga play out one final time.

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