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Cult | News | 14 October 2004

Roswell Season 3 DVD

Review: Alien school drama hits its final year.

Max, Michael, Isabel, Maria and Liz are back for The Year The BBC Didn't Show.

And what a year it is. You can tell the show's changed networks, and is running on fumes and enthusiasm. It's less about alien weirdness and more about slightly soapy character-based-drama. Preferably indoors.

This turns out not to be a bad thing. Isabel meets dashing young lawyer Jesse and marries him, with hilarious consequences (the episode I Married An Alien, a Bewitched parody). This means more screentime for the wonderful Katherine Heigl, and new hair.

The Max/Liz relationship grinds poignantly on (although Jason Behr takes his top off much less this year), while Michael and Maria are back to their on/off antics.

There's no great feeling of mounting tension (unlike year two's slightly half-baked threat from The Skins), but there's a nice undercurrent of suspicion, and the occasionally wonderfully conspiracy script - including a magnificent two-parter that guest stars Morgan ("I stole patents for you!") Fairchild as snarling vixen in fur. It's as silly as it is moving.

There are moments when the season falls apart (the obligatory Christmas episode, Max's quest for his son, and the daft "alien lover at the wedding" plot strand).

The box set includes some really sweet commentary tracks from executive producers Jonathan Frakes and Ronald D Moore. Frakes is as proud as he is candid about the show ("Look - there's our special effect for this week").

World of Cult web guide:

Laurence's lighting tips
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