Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|Russell Simmons Presents Def Poetry Season 4|
Actors: Mos Def, Russell Simmons, Oscar Brown Jr., Zena Edwards, Mark Gonzales
Genres: Comedy, Television
Def Poetry is one of the country's fastest rising performing-art forms, and recognizing the power of urban poetry on modern culture, rap impressario Russell Simmons teamed up with HBO to create Russell Simmons Presents Def... more »
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Fair poetry, weak packaging
T. D. | Reno, NV USA | 05/15/2007
(3 out of 5 stars)
"As I watch the episodes back-to-back, I notice my reaction to Def Poetry shifting. A given poem can be thrilling and surprising and shocking and funny and wonderful (the opener of this season, "Knock Knock" is a good example), but the shine quickly fades as I log my second and third hour. Does a certain sameness creep in? Are there obvious rules by which the poets ALL play? Can I predict the likely ebb and flow of each poem, whatever its subject? By the last episode, the poetry no longer seems original; it seems formulaic. Perhaps this just means that I should resist the temptation to take long gulps of this; perhaps half-hour sips, separated by days or weeks, is the right way to digest these performances. I ding it a star for being good, but not great.
I ding the series another star for cheap packaging. Is it too much to ask for an episode by episode set list of who performs what, either printed in the case or as a menu option on the disc? How about some sort of extras? I'd like to give credit to the poet I cited above, but I'd have to re-watch the show to catch his name."