Silicon Valley (2014)

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Air Date:  Sunday, April 6, 2014  
Studio: HBO
Genre: Television
Rating: Silicon Valley is rated TV-14This program is specifically designed to be viewed by adults and therefore may be unsuitable for children under 17.


In the high-tech gold rush of modern Silicon Valley, the people most qualified to succeed are the least capable of handling success. From HBO and the offbeat mind of Mike Judge ('Office Space,' 'Beavis & Butthead') comes this comedy series that delves into the outrageous world of tech start-ups and the socially awkward underdogs trying to navigate its lucrative potential. In Season 1, the show charts the rising fortunes of Richard, an introverted programmer who lives with his best friend Big Head, pompous Gilfoyle, and sarcastic Dinesh under the roof of self-satisfied millionaire Erlich who lets them stay for long as he gets a 10% cut of their projects. With his career going nowhere fast, Richard suddenly finds himself in the middle of an extreme bidding war over his website's unique search algorithm.

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Silicon Valley: The Complete Third Season Blu-ray Review

Take a bunch of "tech nerds", stir in some humor and drama, mix in some great acting, directing and casting and you end up with HBO's Silicon Valley.  Heading into its Fourth Season on April 23, 2017, the award-winning show has a lot more to offer its audience in the way of plot twists and fun.  Before the new season starts, fans of the show can re-watch last season, out on Blu-ray this week. Or, if you have never seen Silicon Valley, it's time to buy it and start binge watching it ASAP.

For those unfamiliar with the show, it is based on the idea of a shy technology developer named Richard (Thomas Middleditch; The Wolf of Wall Street) creating an algorithm that could potentially make millions of dollars.  When he leaves the company he works for, Hooli, and branches out on his own, he brings Erlich (T.J.Miller; Deadpool), Gilfoyle (Martin Starr; Superbad) with him.  For the first two seasons, they have hilarious interactions and scenarios that eventually seem to work out in the end.

As Season Three begins, Richard is still in shock that he has been demoted from CEO of Pied piper to CTO and decides to leave the company he created. However, after seeing what is out there, he decides to return to Pied Piper and immediately clashes with new CEO Jack Barker (Stephen Tobolowsky; Groundhog Day). Jack's vision seems to be more business based while Richard thinks it should be more consumer based. After some backhanded shenanigans ensue, the season ends with Jack being fired and Big Head (John Brener; The Internship) and Erlich becoming the owners of Pied Piper.  This plot twist effectively sets up the series to reinvent itself in Season Four.

Silicon Valley has all the ingredients to make for a great television show.  Beginning with the cast, they all are talented comedic actors with terrific timing who blend seamlessly together.  Middleditch is perfectly cast to lead this group of "nerds", as he is shy, yet anything but passive.  I love Miller and think he happens to be well cast as Erlich.  The addition this season of Tobolowsky adds another dimension to the cast while still maintaining its integrity.   

The writing is smart without being too "techy" and hilariously funny at times.  The direction blends well into the scheme of the actors and writing so the overall product is just really well done. While the plot had the potential to grow stale, it manages to have avoided that trap for the first three seasons and the final episode of season three sets the show up nicely to change directions without compromising the overall feel.  It will be interesting to see what new journey the writers take the characters and by extension the audience on.

Silicon Valley: The Complete Third Season is delivered in 1080p high definition quality with a 1.78:1 aspect ratio.  The colors are sharp and vibrant without any discernable flaws.  The DTS-HD Master 5.1 audio is well received in the center channel with terrific surround sound that immerses the audience in every scene.  Unfortunately, the disc is lacking in extras with only three deleted scenes, one of which lasts less than thirty seconds.  The Blu-ray would certainly be more appealing with some behind the scenes footage, interviews with cast members, a funny gag reel and maybe some Comic Con footage.

As is standard fair for HBO these days, they once again bring original, quality programming to their network.  Audiences seem to enjoy Silicon Valley and with the way the show is going, I don't see that waning anytime soon. Season three is easy to binge watch because as every episode ends the writers engross us into the plot so much we want to keep watching to see what happens next.  You could find worse ways to spend a lazy weekend.

Grade: B


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