All Creatures Great and Small

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Dean Andre, Apr 10, 2002.

  1. Dean Andre

    Dean Andre Extra

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    I know this is due next month, 5/14 (just AFTER Mother's Day). Any details on it?

    What about pre-orders? The only place I've found is amazon, but I like buy.com for pre-order. Any suggestions?
     
  2. Craig S

    Craig S Producer
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    I'm looking forward to this as well, but you're right that details are scarce & pre-order options are not too great right now. You can find some info at BBC America Shop. The only other place besides Amazon that I've seen it for pre-order is Deep Discount DVD, for the same $59.99 price (although DDD has free shipping).
     
  3. Dean Andre

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    I've seen it at buy.com. But still amazon is the lowest price.

    Buy.com usually ships faster, so I'll probably go that route.

    Any news on special features or supplements to the disk? What do most BBC series DVD's include? Are additional features uncommon on BBC releases?
     
  4. Dean Andre

    Dean Andre Extra

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    Well believe it or not, I ordered this and it didn't come early enough for Mother's Day. My mother doesn't own any DVD's and this was going to start her collection, but when she put the first disc in it started locking up! It's a Phillips brand DVD player, and a little over a year old.

    In the 200+ DVD collection I have, I have never experienced this with any DVD (some rentals have done this, but never any new purchased discs).

    From what I've heard, I can return it to the retailer, but if it's the same pressing it will probably lock up too. Would a replacement do the same?

    Is there any way of contacting BBC directly to see if this is a widespread problem? I called thier BBC shop, and they only handle replacements if they sold the disc. I guess I should contact the store where I ordered it from: buy.com.

    Anyone else having this problem, or have any ideas?

    Thanks
     
  5. Craig S

    Craig S Producer
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    Well, after a few weeks delay, my copy of "All Creatures Great & Small" Series 1 finally arrived yesterday. Here's my impressions.

    It's a 4-disk set housed in one of those super-fat Amarays. I know a lot of you guys like these, but I always have trouble getting them to close. Also it takes up more space than an equivalent Digipak would.

    The set contains all 13 Series 1 episodes, each of which appears to run about 45-50 minutes. This was a bit of a surprise to me because when I watched this show on PBS in the mid-80s I was sure it was in half-hour segments. I don't know if PBS split the original episodes, or if they edited them. Anyone out there know?

    When judging the audio & video quality of a release like this, you have to keep in mind the source. These episodes were produced in the mid-70s. It looks like film was used for the exteriors, and video for the interiors. The picture in general is noticeably soft, but clean. The interiors do look sharper than the exteriors. Colors are good - they accurately reflect the beauty of this part of England. The audio is mono but clean - very little noise or hiss. All in all, this set is very watchable and the quality is certainly better than I remember from the over-the-air broadcasts I saw in the 80s.

    The major bonus is a BBC profile of the real James Herriot, which is located on the 4th disc. This looks to have been made at least 20 years ago, and perhaps before the first series (it mentions the movies made from books, but not the TV show). This was back when they were still keeping the real identity of Herriot & the town of "Darrowby" secret. I only watched a few minutes of it but it looked like a worthwhile addition. The 4th disc also contains the standard actor bios.

    The only criticism I can make of the set is that there are no subtitles. I would really have liked English subtitles to help decipher the thick Yorkshire accents of some of the minor characters. Luckily, the principal actors are all easily understandable to American ears.

    I have to say I am very satisfied with this set. I love the "All Creatures" books, and the series is an excellent adaptation of them. I'm glad to have this one on DVD, and look forward to the rest of the series.
     
  6. Craig S

    Craig S Producer
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    Oh, and to answer Dean's question, I did not have any trouble playing any of the discs on my Sony DVD player.
     
  7. andrew markworthy

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    I realise this will be small consolation to my American cousins, but the Yorkshire accents are quite mild in ACGAS.
     
  8. Dean Andre

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    Thanks so much for the replies!

    I was beginning to feel all alone. I went ahead and sent in for a replacement, but I think it's probably my sister's DVD player. She says it happens every once in a while, but I very rarely have problems with mine.

    I was really excited about getting this for my Mom for Mother's Day, but I know these lockups made my Mom doubt DVD. I figured I'd finally be able to get her sold on the DVD format. She enjoys watching them on my high end system, but never thought she'd want one for her own.

    Well, hopefully the replacement will work. I, too, am looking forward to future DVD sets in this series.
     

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