Hopscotch / 4 disc set / 600 minutes / extras
John Simm, Philip Glenister, Liz White, Dean Andrews
Every so often there comes along a TV show that totally defies your expectations of television and this stunningly good spin on the detective series sees modern day cop Sam Tyler (the brilliant John Simm) get run over and knocked unconscious, when he wakes he is more than a little disturbed to find he is now in 1973 – working with the hard as nails DCI Gene Hunt (Philip Glenister, who in the performance of a lifetime has surely created one of TV’s great characters here, more Jack Regan than Jack Regan, a man who relies on his coppers intuition and his fists to get results).
Sam is able to use his modern day skills to quickly make headway into the team (they believe he has been transferred from Hyde, another suburb of Manchester where the series is set) and he also develops a friendship with young WPC Annie Cartwright (Liz White) but he remains convinced that he is really in a coma and that this “reality” is his brains way of coping, he is determined to do whatever he has to to get back to his own time.
Hanging on to this premise are the storylines themselves with each episode Sam and Gene sparking off each other to solve their cases. Having been lucky enough to recently see the second and final season of this show we know just how good it gets, with its myriad of clues and pointers to what is really going on with Sam in every episode. When everything plays out Life on Mars is going to go down as one of the best TV shows of the year and one of the best TV shows of the modern era, a brilliant candidate for DVD as you need to watch each episode several times to pick up on all the clues and ideas, not to mention the great 70’s soundtrack of course. And there is definitely no truth in the rumour that if you play the CD of Dark Side of the Moon alongside episode one you get to hear the soundtrack from the Wizard of Oz.
Besides being very groovily put together with its retro looking packaging, there are some great extras spread across this four disc set, including 60 minuute documentary Take A Look at the Lawman (full of behind the scenes stuff and cast and crew interviews), a featurette on production designer Paul Sykes called Get Sykes (in homage to Michael Caines Get Carter), there’s a collection of out-takes, a featurette on the music used in the series and audio commentaries on every episode from most of the cast and crew.
Dave Saint Show, The (UK Play 2000, John Thomson, Alexander Kirk)
The Dave Saint Show was a comedy about a useless heavy metal DJ on a local radio station. As was usual with with shows on extra terrestrial channel UK Play music videos were interspersed throughout the show.
UK / UK Play – Channel X / x30 minute episodes / Broadcast 2000
Writers: Alexander Kirk, Simon Messingham / Script Consultant: Stacy Herbert / Music: Steve Cripps, Dan Mendford / Costumes: Pookie Russell / Producer: Jim Reid / Director: Mark Mylod
JOHN THOMSON as Dave Saint
ALEXANDER KIRK as AK
KATE LOUSTOU as Jeneane
Game of Thrones Season Six Opener reviews from around and about
Assorted reviews from the interweb of the season six opener for Game Of Thrones.
Game of Thrones is back, with a premiere full of shocks, bloody acts and creepy reveals – but no definite answer about the fate of Jon Snow.
Season six is the first time the TV series has moved ahead of George RR Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire book series, so even dedicated readers have no idea what will happen. Reviewers say the first episode, The Red Woman, resolved some of the cliffhangers from the last series, but also has a few shocks in store, including one very creepy reveal involving a leading lady.
“The tension was incredible,” says Ed Power in the Daily Telegraph.
Season six opened with the camera swooping low over Castle Black and pausing on noble Jon Snow after his bloody run-in with the traitorous Night’s Watch.
“Alas, the Bastard of Winterfell (Kit Harington) was, for the time being at least, staying very dead indeed,” says Power. This was confirmed by “a haunting close-up of his waxy visage and the pool of scarlet arranged like a skewed halo”.
Short of spelling out: “He’s dead!” in huge flaming letters, the writers couldn’t have driven the point home harder, adds the critic, who asks whether this was “a sadistic riposte to fans” who have waited a year to see if their heart-throb will return or “a sleight-of-hand intended to make his eventual reappearance all the more dramatically satisfying”.
Christopher Hooton in The Independent writes: “The last season of Game of Thrones didn’t so much end on a cliff-hanger as a splat on the beach below. Jon Snow is unequivocally dead,” or so we’ve been repeatedly told over the past few months.
However, he adds, the sheer amount of screen time given to his body “suggested more than just a ‘funeral then we all move on with our lives’ narrative”.
With the “obligatory Jon Snow death check” out of the way, this episode was mostly about setting up the playing field for the rest of the season, continues the critic.
Indeed, it was “a sombre, sturdy opening”, says Matt Fowler on IGN. While “not a high watermark for the show”, the series’ opener resolved some cliff-hangers and included “a big creepy reveal regarding Melisandre right at the end”.
It also set up the pieces on the chessboard and managed to touch upon just about every character in the ensemble, says the journalist, a much easier task these days, “now that the herd is so thin”.
Yes, it was a “table-setting episode”, says Daniel Fienberg at the Hollywood Reporter, as premieres are supposed to be. The episode did what it needed, putting this mammoth locomotive back on the track.
Being Game of Thrones, however, there were a few shockers, including some gory violence and nudity that is “more shocking in its narrative ramifications than its gratuity or titillation”. And while the answer to Snow’s wellbeing comes quickly, says Fienberg, “it needn’t necessarily be permanent, because what things are?”
Source: The Week
Columbo Series Three Region 1 DVD Review
Distributor: Universal Home Entertainment
Certificate: Not Rated | 11 Hours and 24 minutes
Available to buy
ANYONE IN IT WE KNOW?
Peter Falk, Martin Sheen, Vincent Price, Deidre Hall, Jackie Cooper
WHAT’S IT ABOUT THEN?
The Columbo releases from Universal are now upto the third season and of course by now it is full steam ahead as Columbo really hits its stride, of course the basic premise of the show dictates that we know who the killer is right from the get go but by the third season the audience was lapping up the way the Superlative Peter Falk as Lt Columbo doggedly pursued
his villain who were always lulled into a false sense of security by Columbo’s grubby mac, battered old car and down at heel demeanour, all tactics designed to throw the suspect off guard before he lets them know that he knows they did it.
Spread over two double sided discs this nicely put together set features all 8 feature length season three episodes, Columbo’s cases include the mysterious death of a well known author, a country singer who is prime suspect in a murder case, he also finds time to uncover police corruption and political skullduggery. Columbo also always managed to attract a high level of guest and this series includes the legendary Johnny Cash in the episode Swan Song as well as the likes of
Jose Ferrier, Vincent Price, Martin Sheen, Dana Elcar and Robert Culp. A classy slice of 1970’s Tec TV Heaven, Columbo always entertains and should be on any Classic TV fans must have list.
ANY SPECIAL FEATURES?
There’s a great bonus episode from the series Mrs Columbo (which many have claimed isn’t a spin off from Columbo but having now seen an episode it clearly is) this is called Murder Is A Parlour Game (from 1979) and features Kate Mulgrew as Kate Columbo, journalist on a small local paper and married to a never seen Lt Columbo, she investigates when a suicide case appears to be murder, the excellent Donald Pleasance guest stars, this is great fun and is hopefully a precursor to the whole series getting a release.
Please note: This article predates the published date and is from the old HTML version of Memorable TV and is part of our From The Archives collection.
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Hazell: Hazell and Hyde (ITV 7 June 1979, with Maev Alexander)
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In Hazell and the Suffolk Ghost our intrepid hero pays a visit to the seaside when an accountant, Peter Harlow,...
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In Hazell Gets The Boot Hazell finds himself more or less coerced into taking on a supposedly simple job for villain...
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