Showing posts from August, 2021

Dick Barton: The Case of the Vanishing House

This is a series I have had on my radar to write about here for yonks. Like many shows the Dick Barton 'franchise' has had many incarnations - this is about the 1979 TV series, however there are previous radio serials and the films from the forties starring Don Stannard as Dick Barton, as well as comics and novels. The TV series is available in a complete box set, and my only criticism of it is that it can be difficult to navigate because the different adventures are only given numbers. This one is number three, which is on disc three. There is a certain irony of course, that I have recently been very snooty about period drama and here I am enthusiastically reviewing a TV show made in the seventies but depicting the forties. And depicting it very well indeed. I have thought about why I like this but generally don't like period drama, and I think it might be because this isn't starting from scratch - you only have to listen to the radio series or see the films to know th

OTT (Over the Top) episode 8

It's a funny thing, culture. It's the thing which makes other people's worlds impenetrable to other people and even sometimes to the residents of the culture, because it's usually unconscious. For example the Indian head wobble - unless an Indian is aware of how other people see it, they won't be aware of it. My favourite example is that in Chinese culture it is apparently rude to ask someone not to do something, because it makes them lose face (this is of course a European's perception). What you do instead is vigorously compliment them on the opposite. At this point any white person reading this is feeling exhausted by that idea. Another, more relevant, example is how outsiders see the British. We have a reputation in various places for being both reserved and polite, and also for being drunk hooligans. Strange that. But we did create the Carry On films and the Cobfessions films so we're not just about Downton Abbey. In this divide there was a rather anarc

The Avengers Novelisations at the Internet Archive

These novelisations have come up here a couple of times. There were a number of novels published based on The Avengers in the sixties. Rather than rely on the remaining yellowing paperbacks, it is my joy to let you know that many of these are available at the Internet Archive. I have worked from  this  list to compile this list, and there may well be others. I have read some of them but look forward to expanding my reading. Deadline by Patrick Macnee and Peter Leslie (1965) Dead Duck by Patrick Macnee and Peter Leslie (1966) The Floating Game by John Garforth (1967) The Laugh Was on Lazarus by John Garforth (1967) The Passing of Gloria Monday by John Garforth (1967) Heil Harris by John Garforth (1967)

Dr Who: Fury from the Deep Part 1

I am going to have difficulty sticking to the subject of the post. (When don't you? Shouts the entire classic TV blogosphere) I will be upfront and say that while I am watching Fury from the Deep, what I am thinking about is reconstruction of missing Dr Who episodes. The specific one I am watching is the Loose Cannon reconstruction. I know there has also been a BBC animated one - oh the irony of the BBC reconstructing shows after reusing the tapes! I have seen a few BBC animated reconstructions (Power of the Daleks, The Macra Terror and The Faceless Ones) and also a BBC reconstruction using telesnaps. I am going to come right out with it and say that I prefer the telesnaps reconstructions. The animated ones just don't seem to have the right feel. As far as I know they aren't going any more but I also prefer the Loose Cannon ones - you can find them on the internet. You can also find out about Loose Cannon  here . I particularly like Fury from the Deep because it presses all

Dial M for Murder: The Contract

It turns out there are at least a couple of films and TV series called Dial M for Murder, but this post is about  this show . It was a 1974 series of mysteries whose common feature was that they involved a phone. As far as I can see the show has never been issued for home viewing and seems largely to have vanished completely except for this one episode which the Ian Hendry website have kindly uploaded to YouTube. You can watch it  here . The show has a number of reviews on imbd, including from under 25s and I can't think how people have seen it unless they are reviewing this episode or reviewing one of the other Dial M by mistake. And it is at this point I can't guarantee that the rest of this review won't turn hysterical because Ian Hendry and Robert Lang play a gay couple who murder people on contract. - Pause for laughter- I'm not going to lie, my very first impression is that this show must have been wildly racy for 1974. It wasn't long since the Sexual Offences