Upstairs Downstairs region one quality?

Jefferson

Supporting Actor
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Apr 23, 2002
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Can anyone attest to the quality of the A and E region one dvd's of this Brit series? It is nice that they are season sets, but the quality is reported to be as poor or poorer than vhs versions taped off the air. In England, VCI has put out similar season sets, but transferred from original masters. A and E has also mixed up the pictures on the cases, as they do not correspond to the appropriate season? What gives?
 

Jeff Ulmer

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Aug 23, 1998
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I have reviewed the first three seasons at dOc (the link is below). The quality is sketchy, but this looks like issues on the master videotape. I haven't seen the VCI versions for comparison, but the A&E sets are pretty marginal when it comes to defects, which are abundant. I also noticed the seemingly random pictures on the cases and covers, as though the graphics department had no idea who was in what season - which they probably don't. If Marjorie is on season 4 there will be some explaining to do.
 

Jefferson

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Apr 23, 2002
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Thanks, Jeff.......very thorough, well done. But I have friends in the UK who say the VCI region 2 dvd's are of improved, and undeteriorated quality. They were mastered from the LWT master tapes, rather than the PBS dupes.
 

Jeff Ulmer

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Aug 23, 1998
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That is disappointing to hear then. I cut A&E some slack assuming that the masters were the major problem. I'm now interested in the UK version, though I was also under the assumtion that those are incomplete, missing the black and white episodes from the first season. Is that correct?
 

Jefferson

Supporting Actor
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Apr 23, 2002
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The Region 2 dvd of the black and white episodes has just come out, the first that the UK people have had them since the original run of the series. Their sets include both of the two different edits of episode one, "On Trial".......two different endings were recorded, the one on the American sets, and the alternate, which shows the character of Sarah leaving Eaton place (in color).....this evidently was filmed for stations that were not originally airing the black and white episodes.
 

Jefferson

Supporting Actor
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Apr 23, 2002
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979
OK, Jeff, i just checked it out on the Updown website... the black and white ep's are only newly out on vhs in Britain, but VCI is releasing the region 2 dvd of these, and also a series of "best of"'s....seems that Britain is about to get a taste of that type of formatting as well.
 

BarryR

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Jul 30, 2000
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BARRY RIVADUE
I agree that whoever put together the box designs never saw one episode; Season 3 features characters no longer in the later seasons (Sarah, for one). Hazel should be featured for Season 3, and isn't. And what's with the prominent wedding photo with Georgina that should've been reserved for the Season 5 box? Sloppy as hell, I say! As for video quality, it's certainly nothing special, but I'm resigned to it. Incidentally, I shelled out a princely sum for the new book INSIDE UPDOWN, a superlative reference book on the series available via Amazon U.K. It's the definitive tome on the series, and costs about 1 1/2 additional seasonal sets based on deepdiscountdvd pricing. ;D
 

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