The Ultimate DVD Easter Egg Guide book review

What goodies are hiding within your DVDs? Julian checks out the guide that claims to have the answers...

The humble DVD Easter egg has certainly had a hell of a decade: from obscure novelty to the centrepiece of one of the most acclaimed pieces of television drama in recent years, Doctor Who‘s Blink, all in the space of ten years. Indeed, there are few who couldn’t admit to idly fiddling with the arrow buttons on their remotes in the hope of discovering a hidden documentary or a rare blooper.

As the first decade of the 2000s draw to a close, with DVD slowly but surely passing the baton over to Blu-ray as consumers’ format of choice, former Empire journalist and Channel 4 list show stalwart Jo Berry has compiled a selection of the very best in The Ultimate DVD Easter Egg Guide.

Ultimately most, if not all, of the information given in the book can be found easily online. However, the personal touches that Berry has made throughout this anthology, and the care she has taken in its compilation, make this a worthwhile companion to have for your DVD collection.

DVDs, from films to TV box sets, are listed alphabetically, making it incredibly easy to find the title you’re looking for. Each listing consists of a concise and honest review, followed by a detailed catalogue of eggs found on the disc, and how to find them. Each individual egg is given a rating out of five stars, indicating how worthwhile or entertaining it is.

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Some of the best eggs discussed include a breakdancing Yoda, the animated cast of Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within recreating Michael Jackson’s Thriller dance, and a naked Tobias F√ľnke from Arrested Development. Among these more quirky examples, absorbing interviews and fascinating behind-the-scenes footage can also be found lurking deep within your copies of The Godfather Trilogy, Moulin Rouge, and Lost.

It’s Berry’s reviews, though, that will more than likely keep drawing you back. Whether lavishing praise on Blake’s 7, or questioning the motives behind Disney’s Dinosaur, her sadly all too brief insights make this book work just as well as a catalogue of recommendations as it does a collection of Easter eggs.

The only major drawback is Berry’s choice of DVDs. Many obvious or more interesting omissions – such as the newly recorded audio footage by the cast of The Day Today, or, indeed, the inclusion of the aforementioned Blink Easter egg in the season 3 box set of Doctor Who – have been oddly overlooked in favour of relatively obscure titles and Region 1 imports.

But, as a fun, handy guide for those who simply can’t be bothered to trawl the internet for such information, The Ultimate DVD Easter Egg Guide makes for a more than useful purchase.

The Ultimate DVD Easter Egg Guide is out now and available from the Den Of Geek Store.

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4 out of 5