Whilst the Writers' Strike left this season feeling a little empty, the quality of the show continues to shine through. The conclusion to the Sara Saga is excellently pulled off and will certainly bring a tear to the eye of the most faithful CSI fan. Some of the episodes are a bit poor - such as the story of the young lad who develops breasts - but these are balanced out by the other episodes.
Shame there's not as many episodes as there normally are but worth the purchase all the same.
After the strength, drama and pure suspense of Season 7 with it's wonderful 'miniature killer' arc, Season 8 had a lot to live up to. And it absolutely doesn't.
Episode 1 'Dead doll' finishes off the 'miniature killer' story (well, almost) and is a brilliant episode and is probably the only real reason to buy this 8-episode set.
The link-up with the 'Without a trace" series and characters is good, but feels oddly disjointed when the 2nd part switches over to become a 'Without a trace' episode with the addition of Gil Grissom.
Sara Sidle's farewell is well-handled in 'Goodbye and good luck' and neatly links back to both 'Dead doll' and the appearance of a freaky little girl and her strange brother in Season 7. Sara's gradual descent into disillusionment, sadness and a feeling of hopelessness is well developed and makes complete sense.
But after all that - the remaining episodes are exceptionally weak or just downright silly. 'You kill me' is an insult to the intelligence of CSI fans and is undoubtedly the worst episode so far in the entire CSI series ... and I've seen them all up to the end of Season 8.
Other reviewers have said this - but with only 13 episodes in season 8 (14 if you count the 'Without a trace' tie-in) there is no excuse whatsoever for not releasing the entire season as a single DVD set. This is a pure and simple example of ripping-off the fans.
My advice is to not buy either part 1 or part 2 of Season 8 until and unless you can get them from for well below £10.
We are huge CSI fans and I found part 1, season 8 really was disappointing after the usual quality. The build up to saving Sara Sidle was little disappointing, it could have been better.
Many of the story lines are weak, with a good story toward the end. The episode where Sara Sidle leaves is good as is the story line which crosses both CSI and Without A Trace is the best on the disk. It was too short as well, so value for money just isn't there. This isn't reflected in the price (thankfully we picked it up on sale before Christmas for a little over £10, but the price has since jumped back up again) There are some bonus features including a Without A Trace Episode, one episode with commentary, a feature on Sara Sidle's departure and also a special director (which is relevant to season 8 part 2 not part 1).
The final episode on the disk is terrible and it is really disapointing to end with it. It may have been an attempt to do somthing 'light' after Sara leaves but I found it really hard to sit through.
I am hoping part 2 will be a lot better. Wishing I waited for the release of the Season 8 Box Set.
The series is a good one first off. Also its entertaining TV, despite being an analytical scientist I still enjoy it as its good TV. (Since when has TV been accuracte anyway?)
The episodes are entertaining, there's good stories and plots. One episode in particular has very good tongue in cheek humour. The entire series also is interesting as some episodes focus more on the 'lesser' characters like hodges, the dna girl and the other trace guy which adds some interesting character development. Despite this it is still true to its roots as CSI and I'd reccomend it for any fan. New comers to the series may want to dive in but you don't get as many episodes (due to the writers strike AFAIK) so perhaps concentrate on series 7 which is superb also. I've docked one star from an otherwise 5/5 set due to the fact that the episodes are so few. I think they attempted to make it up with a bonus cross over episode of 'Without a Trace' which was interesting, even though I rarely watch the show although the chemistry at times seemed a bit lackluster. Despite this they also have the usual commentaries and extras.
Contrary to Amazon's description, this set contains 8 episodes plus the cross-over 'Without a Trace' episode. Disk 3 contains episodes 7 & 8 plus several extras, including one about William Friedkin, which is a huge spoiler for episode 9 from the next set.
******* BEWARE SPOILERS BELOW***********
Most of the episodes are just OK. Grissom's presence in the crossover 'Where & Why' does not make much sense. 'Dead Doll' is slow, but was probably much more tense if you knew Jorja Fox was ready to leave. Disk 3 has only two episodes, and I love them both. 'Goodbye & Good Luck' revisits the child genius Hannah West, who arranged for brother Marlon to get away with murder. This time, she has framed Marlon for a murder she committed, but once again Sara cannot prove it. We also see how much Sara has changed, with the Ronnie Lake character showing us how Sara used to be in Season 1. 'You Kill Me' is another ep concentrating on the lab techs, so if you did not like 'Lab Rats' you will probably not like it. The story is good fun, and the commentary from the lab tech actors is huge fun.
As im an avid CSI Las Vegas fan i was not disappointed by this purchase my only criticism being that season 8 is the shortest series of CSI Las Vegas which for an addict was devastating! Lol. I would highly recommend this DVD for any CSI fans. Nothing better than a night in with Grissom and Co. :-)