I thought I’d go through my DVD collection to show you what I have, and this is part 4, looking at more of my favourite TV shows. Feel free to comment if you share any of my tastes. 🙂
Thanks for watching! 🙂
Hi everybody. We’re now on to part 4 of my DVD collection, and I’m starting with one of my all-time favourite sitcoms, Only Fools And Horses, which I have the box set of here. There’s not much you need to say about the show. I think everybody knows it, and there’s so many great characters and stories and memorable scenes.
You know, you’ve got Del Boy falling through the bar, and the Batman and Robin scene, and the chandelier scene, and the bus that blows up in the Jolly Boys Outing, and the blow-up dolls that explode, and Del Boy playing poker, and so, so many other memorable moments.
And not just funny moments, but drama as well. John Sullivan was an extremely good writer, and these are all extremely good actors, and they could mix pathos and drama in amongst all the humour. So it really felt real and true to life. You could really believe that people lived like this, and there are probably many who did.
So, yeah, it’s great to have this set. That said, however, it’s not without its frustrations. As you can see here for series 3, they’ve put in a double-sided disc. I hate it when people do this, because you can never tell which side of the disc is which, and you’ve got to be incredibly careful how you hold it, because there’s no safe picture side that you can touch. So you’ve really got to be careful to hold it at the edges. And the soft, round bits that you put the discs over are a bit too soft and perhaps not as secure as they could be. I’ve had discs nearly fall out of here occasionally. So it could be packaged better.
And the other main gripe that many fans have for this set, quite rightly I think, is that the episodes aren’t strictly complete. There’s bits of music that have been cut out for rights reasons, there are lines that have been cut out because they might cause offence. Many episodes aren’t touched too badly, but certainly a couple of the longer specials and a few of the other episodes have bits cut out. Which you notice if you’re familiar with the TV versions, compared to the DVD versions. The Jolly Boys Outing is one good example, I think there’s a whole scene in a club cut out of that because of the music involved.
So, yeah, it’s a great shame that it’s not strictly complete. It would be nice to have all the episodes uncut. But, you know, we’re grateful for what we have, we’ve got every single episode here. I think they should have stopped when they became millionaires, it went a bit too far and let the ending down a bit when they did the extra 3 episodes beyond that. Nice as they were, they should have stopped earlier. Still, it’s nice to get everything that they have given us.
And there’s a documentary here as well, which is very interesting too. It would be nice to have more extras for each series really. I think, you know, this is the sort of show, popular as it was, that deserves special edition releases for every series. You know, the last episode got well over 20 million viewers I think, so it was really, really well-loved this show. And the BBC needs to treat it with a bit more respect I think, to be perfectly honest.
But there’s a book here as well, The Only Fools And Horses Story. Again, that’s very interesting. Lots of interesting insights and behind the scenes glimpses, and a couple of scripts for scenes that were never filmed or broadcast. And, yeah, it makes up for the extras that aren’t provided on the DVDs. Certainly if you look on Youtube there are various extra bits that they could include, and I’m sure there must be outtakes and deleted scenes and interviews that they could also stick on the DVDs. So yeah, come on BBC, special edition releases of this would be nice, because it’s crying out for it really. But, yeah, I’m happy for what we’ve got.
And then we’ve got Going Straight, which is the sequel to Porridge, which I forgot to mention in my last part, so I’ll bring that in now. This was when Fletcher was out of prison, and it’s still a good sitcom. There’s only one series, and it’s not as good as Porridge, but it’s certainly well worth it if you like Porridge.
And then QI, I’ve got the first 3 seasons of this. This is a brilliant show. It’s not just Quite Interesting, it’s very interesting as far as I’m concerned. And Sandi Toksvig has of course now taken over from the N series, so she’s doing a very good job judging by the one episode I’ve seen so far. She does seem very well suited to the role. And there’s lots of extras on those QI DVDs as well, so that’s great. It would be nice to see them release all the other series at some point.
And then Red Dwarf, another classic, and it’s nice to see all the spines of the first 8 series lining up to form the logo there. They’ve done a great job with these releases. Not only do you get all the wonderfully classic episodes, because they’re all brilliant and hilarious, but there’s also lots of extras as well. They’ve really made a good effort with these. And the later series they’ve done have still been good, they’ve still been up to a good standard. The most recent series they’ve just released on Dave was very good, and there’s another one on the way, which is good to hear. So, yeah, it’s good to see the Red Dwarf legacy still going, because it is definitely one of the best sitcoms out there.
And then The Ricky Gervais Show. This was based on the podcasts he did with Stephen Merchant and Karl Pilkington. I never listened to the original podcasts, but these have put animation to them, and it works really well. It’s often hilarious, and Karl Pilkington is brilliant. I don’t know if some what he says is acted or put on or not, but I don’t care. It’s funny, it’s hilarious.
And then Rock And Chips. This was the prequel to Only Fools And Horses that was made. Wasn’t really as good as the show itself, it was more of a comedy drama I suppose. But, yeah, it was interesting, it’s good to have for completion in the collection. And Nichols Lyndhurst does a great job in this. So, yeah, it’s worth getting, but it’s not as good as the main show it’s related to.
And then The Best Of Ronnie Barker. I’ve got a couple more DVDs of his here, because I am a big fan of his, so I’ve just got everything I can. Because he was a genius, a brilliant writer, a brilliant comedian, great with words and language. And these are some of his best moments on here.
And then there’s another DVD next to that, which is called The Ronnie Barker Collection. It’s not a collection of all his stuff, obviously. This is a couple of series he did where he had, like, different episodes with each series, doing different things. And it’s very interesting, there’s some good stuff in here. So as you can see we’ve got Hark At Barker, which has got Josephine Tewson in it again, as I mentioned for Clarence before. And then Six Dates With Barker as well, which has got Spike Milligan in as well as other people. Gerald Wiley was an alternative name for Ronnie Barker. He often wrote stuff as Gerald Wiley so as not to draw attention to the fact that it was him.
And then Ross Noble’s Australian Trip. I love Ross Noble, I think his surreal humour and tangents he goes off on is just brilliant. He’s really, really good at improvised comedy, and I’ve got his live shows as well, which I’ll get to later. But, yeah, this is a really interesting road trip, and it’s very entertaining to watch, very interesting. You get to see some very interesting places and people, so definitely well worth getting.
And then Russell Howard’s Good News. One of many shows you get on the TV poking fun at the week’s news, but this is particularly funny, particularly well done. I love Russell Howard’s sense of humour and his comedy, and I’ve got his live shows as well. So it’s good to have a couple of compilations of these. It would be nice to have some more, perhaps, and it would be nice to have some new series on the telly as well, we haven’t had one for a while. But he is very funny.
And then the box set of Sorry! This was a sitcom starring Ronnie Corbett. Again, one of those I’d never seen before when I bought it, because they don’t repeat it on the telly. Which is a shame, because it’s very, very good, and it’s a very good vehicle for Ronnie Corbett and his talents. And, yeah, it’s well worth watching if you’re a fan of The Two Ronnies and Ronnie Corbett. It does work very well.
And then Saturday Live, which went on to Friday Night Live as well. This was some very early appearances of people like Rik Mayall, Adrian Edmondson, Harry Enfield, Stephen Fry, Hugh Laurie, Peter Cook, Ben Elton, and various others. Again there’s some sketches that don’t quite hit the mark, but there’s plenty that do. And it’s a real interesting historical artefact in terms of their comedy, because you don’t get to see these things on the telly, they don’t repeat these shows, certainly. So it’s well worth looking at.
And for Rik and Ade in particular, they did a sketch, or many sketches, as The Dangerous Brothers. So this is the best of those sketches, called Dangervision. You know, their typical violent, slapstick humour, it’s very good, very funny. So, yeah, if you’re a fan of Rik and Ade, seek this one out, I think you’ll like it. It’s a very interesting and enjoyable insight into how their comedy developed over the years.
And then Seven Of One, another Ronnie Barker DVD. This one’s particularly significant, because you’ve got the pilot episodes for Porridge and Open All Hours on it, as well as a few other episodes for comedies that didn’t get made, so are very interesting to watch, because they’re quite rare otherwise. Again, some work better than others, which is why some got commissioned and some didn’t. Prisoner And Escort is the pilot for Porridge, and the pilot for Open All Hours was just called Open All Hours, so that was nice and easy. There’s some other ones in there that are worth looking at.
And then Shooting Stars, a couple of later series that they did. The most recent series were released on DVD, and they’re very funny. Again, it’s a completely wacky, zany show, but it’s very funny, and very well done. Because it’s just nice watching nonsense stuff like that. Vic and Bob are pretty funny, you know. They are very clever at what they do, as mad as it seems.
And then Sherlock. Again, not much needs to be said about this. I mean Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman are superb in this, and Steven Moffatt and Mark Gatiss have written some real, cracking episodes. It’s a shame you only get 3 a series, and that the series are so spread out, because everyone’s so busy on other things. But when we do get episodes, they’re well worth it. I’m looking forward to the new series coming up very soon.
And then we have The Simpsons, which I’ll finish this part with. I’ve got about 19 seasons of that, and I would buy more, but they’re not gonna release any more on DVD, because apparently there isn’t a market for them. Which I think is a bit unfair, because I would keep buying them, and I know many other people would. But what we have is very good. The artwork on each set is very nicely done, there’s plenty of extras, there’s commentaries on every episode, and all sorts of other bits and pieces. So, yeah, it’s a great show, and it’s a shame that it’s not gonna get more physical releases, because it certainly deserves it.
There you go, that’s the end of Part 4. Still plenty more to come, and I hope you’re enjoying it still so far. So I will see you in Part 5. Bye for now.