Underbelly – Season 1
For over ten years, the Carlton Crew have been dominating the criminal underground in Melbourne. When the amphetamines market starts to boom, however, things start to change. Carl Williams, a low-life driver for the Moran family, decides to contact the gang of Tony Mokbel and offer his services to them with regards to XTC production. When the Morans find out that Williams has started for himself they decide to teach him a lesson but instead of killing him they let him live. A mistake they’ll never forget as Williams is out for revenge which starts off the biggest gang war Melbourne has ever seen…
Sound and Vision:
The image is raw and hard which makes for a realistic experience that fits the series perfectly, but unfortunately several episodes contain some extreme compression errors where you’ll suddenly see lines of blocks appear. Very unfortunate as it’s been a while we’ve seen such a bad transfer and this series certainly doesn’t deserve this. Luckily, this pops up only now and then and can quickly be forgotten.
The sound suffers also as the audio volume tends to change from episode to episode and even sometimes from scene to scene.
Sony has done an extremely bad performance with this transfer compared to what we’ve gotten used to and I hope they’ll do a better job next time.
Underbelly is based on true events that happened in Melbourne between 1995 and 2004 and although there are no big names in the cast, the acting is of very high standard. The characters all look very real and the raw storyline makes for an extremely interesting series. Beware though, the first episodes need some getting into as the style is sometimes a bit chaotic and you might have some trouble getting used to it, but once you’ve past the third episode you can be sure to be hooked!
Some people might compare this with The Sopranos but where that series is fiction, this one is real and it shows in a lot of things. No romantisation of anything, raw sex and violence and real feelings of all characters involved are what you get. Also, it’s clear that the gangsters aren’t “cool” people but rather pathetic losers that make money with a criminal business and have absolutely no feelings of remorse or guilt for whatever they do.