20th Century Fox Series •••½Picture •••• Sound •••½Extras •••
White trash with a pure heart, the 2006 Emmy winner for Best Writing, Comedy Series sure knows how to dole out the extras. Most of the eight commentaries are anchored by creator Greg Garcia and titular star Jason Lee, who share an easy rapport and dollop just the right balance of informative anecdotes and supplemental humor. A gut-busting DVD-exclusive episode, "Bad Karma," turns the tables on the show's premise, with Earl gleefully enacting revenge rather than atoning for his misdeeds. Meanwhile, production values are feature-film caliber, with natural light tempering many outdoor scenes. The motel where Earl and his brother Randy live is palpably seedy: Walls are (sorry) urine-stain yellow, bedspread and drapes are a dull pumpkin, and pool water is swamp-moss green. And Earl's weatherbeaten 1973 El Camino is appropriately dented and dusty. The only caveat: The Dolby Surround mix is too subtle in scenes where a low-end rumble could have really sold the intrusive planes shaking the picture frames on the walls in Earl's parents' house. At least the musical score is consistently level-matched to support (but not overwhelm) the karma-fulfilling action. [NR] English, French, and Spanish, Dolby Surround; letterboxed (1.78:1) and anamorphic widescreen; four dual-layer discs.