The popular Hallmark Channel series “Cedar Cove” apparently wasn’t popular enough, as it wraps things up with its third season, which is now on DVD.
“Cedar Cove: The Final Season” (Cinedigm, 2015, three discs, 11 episodes, featurettes). This sweet-natured, gentle soap opera, set in the fictional seaside town of Cedar Cove in Washington State (but filmed in Vancouver), stars Andie MacDowell as Olivia, a municipal court judge, and features a large ensemble of supporting characters. It may bring to mind “The Gilmore Girls,” though less snarky and humorous.
Chief among Cedar Cove’s locals are Olivia’s librarian best friend Grace (Teryl Rothery); boyfriend Jack (Dylan Neal), who runs the local newspaper; Jack’s rival Paul (Colin Ferguson), the new D.A. this season; Olivia’s adult daughter Justine (Sarah Smyth); Warren (Brennan Elliott), an unscrupulous real-estate developer; and the Beldons (Bruce Boxleitner, Barbara Niven), who run a local B&B.
“Mayday” (Acorn, 2013, two discs, five episodes, featurette, photo gallery). In a small English village that worships pagan traditions, the May Day parade is a big deal, but the beautiful young teenager (Leila Mimmack) who reigns as the parade’s queen has gone missing. Lots of suspects, lots of motives, lots of unsavory people in soap opera situations, some laced with mysticism (and more than a few nods to “Twin Peaks”). Sadly, it finishes up with too many dangling plot elements. Co-stars include Sophie Okonedo, Peter Firth and Lesley Manville. (Contains some violence, coarse language, sex and nudity.)
“New Tricks: Season 12” (Acorn, 2015, three discs, 10 episodes, featurette, photo gallery). DCI Sasha Miller (Tamzin Outhwaite) and her team of snarky retired detectives solve more cold cases in this 12th and final season of the long-running British police procedural. The team’s loyalty is tested when one member is linked to a crime from the past and their final case is the murder of a political activist 15 years earlier. (Contains coarse language and sex.)
“Game of Thrones: The Complete Fifth Series” (HBO, 2015, 10 episodes, 10 episodes, deleted scenes, audio commentaries, featurettes). This season primarily adapts George R.R. Martin’s fourth and fifth novels, as conflicts abound with power struggles in Westeros and King’s Landing. Stars include Peter Dinklage, Lena Headey, Natalie Dormer and Charles Dance. (The usual HBO R-rated excesses abound. The sixth season begins April 24.)
“NOVA: Life’s Rocky Start” (PBS, 2016). This hourlong documentary looks at our planet some four-and-a-half billion years ago, when Earth was home to little more than volcanic eruptions and meteorite collisions and asks this question: How did life emerge from this? That’s the poser that mineralogist Robert Hazen pursues.
“Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Half-Shell Heroes: Blast to the Past” (Nickelodeon/Paramount, 2015). Animated hourlong special (43 minutes here) that aired on Nick Jr. last November has our heroes traveling back in time to the Jurassic era where they meet up with dinosaurs that are friendly and aliens that are not.