Paul Hogan's England (1983)
Additional Footage-Classic Characters
Trailer-Channel Nine Salutes Bert Newton, Best Of Paul Hogan Show
Trailer-The Best Of The Don Lane Show
|Year Of Production||1983|
|Running Time||66:24 (Case: 144)|
|RSDL / Flipper||Dual Layered||Cast & Crew|
|Region Coding||1,2,3,4,5,6||Directed By||None Given|
|Pan & Scan/Full Frame||None||English Dolby Digital 2.0 (256Kb/s)|
|Widescreen Aspect Ratio||1.29:1|
|Video Format||576i (PAL)|
|Original Aspect Ratio||1.29:1||Miscellaneous|
|Annoying Product Placement||Yes, Beer & Airlines|
|Action In or After Credits||Yes|
Following on the heels of the successful release, The Best of The Paul Hogan Show (which I previously reviewed) comes this new single disc, Paul Hogan's England, which goes quite a way to redressing the issues I had with the previous collection, making it a great addition for fans. My main complaint last time about what was a really good release generally was that some of the classic characters were under-represented, especially my favourite, Leo W***er. Well, this collection fixes that and has some other great material as well.
The Paul Hogan Show ran between the years 1973 and 1982 mostly on the Nine network but sometimes on Seven. During this time Hoges made approximately 50 one-hour shows including various specials. The humour was mostly low-brow, self-deprecating and very, very Australian. There was rampant racism, sexism and homophobia. Despite this (or maybe because of it) the show was also very funny and very popular.
This DVD set contains as its main feature what appears to be a combination of the two specials Hoges recorded for Britain's ITV in 1983. The original specials ran for 50 minutes and included musical acts in addition to Hoges' humour. The musical acts are gone here and the feature runs for 66:24. So, I have guessed that this must be material from both specials. There are some great sketches included here, such as:
The comedy hit rate is pretty high here with most material being very funny and only one sketch that I found unfunny (the tramp). Of course, the comedy is still rude, racist and homophobic but why change the habits of a lifetime in comedy? Before you start saying that 66 minutes is not much, take a look at the extras section of this review as this is where there is some more gold, especially for fans of classic characters (although still no Super Dag).
Overall, if you bought the previous release and loved it, just get this one - you will not be sorry. If you haven't bought the other one but are interested, this one might be a better place to start as the classic material comes thicker and faster here, although the original one has more material overall. Just get them both!
The video quality is poor (especially in the feature) and is not as good as the previous release, which wasn't great anyway. The extras which come from the original series have much better video quality, but are still nothing special. The feature is still watchable despite the video quality.
The disc is presented in a 1.29:1 aspect ratio non 16x9 enhanced which would be the original aspect ratio.
The picture was not particularly clear and sharp with significant grain which was especially bad in any non-studio sketches. The funniest sketch on the disc, World Series Executions, has unfortunately the worst video quality. Luckily, there was no evidence of low level noise. Shadow detail was fairly ordinary but not terrible.
The colour was nothing special and featured chroma noise, flaring and bleeding which was especially bad during World Series Executions. Any white during this sketch had a colour bleeding aura which was incredible to behold. Colour is much better during the extras.
There were also lots of artefacts including lots of specks, flecks and lines, some really noticeable edge enhancement, aliasing such as at 11:30 and 31:20 and quite a few tape tracking errors. Again, the extras are better from an artefact perspective.
There are no subtitles.
This is a dual layered disc, however the layer change must be between segments as I did not notice it.
The audio quality is not bad, but is mono.
This DVD contains only one audio option: a Dolby Digital 2.0 soundtrack encoded at a rather high 256 Kb/s. Obviously, the source would be mono and so is the sound here.
Dialogue was clear and easy to understand, which is obviously the key issue.
There were no problems with audio sync.
The surround speakers and subwoofer were not used at all.
|Surround Channel Use|
The simple menus allowed for selection of the various segments and nothing else. The graphics on the menu were quite shimmery.
Various Luigi bits from the original TV series, doing magic tricks (or mostly not doing them) in front of a live studio audience. There is some really funny stuff here which is not even vaguely politically correct.
Even though there is only 6 minutes of Leo here it certainly contains all the bits I can remember from the series, including escaping from a barrel, riding a bike through a wall of fire, snake capture, trying to stop a truck taking off and more. Classic stuff!
Here is the motherload for Hoges & Strop fans! Included are seven classic Hoges & Strop sketches:
Trailers for the Bert Newton retrospective DVD, the original Paul Hogan set and the Don Lane show retrospective collection. Some interesting stuff such as Bert Newton calling Muhammad Ali 'boy'.
This set is coded for all regions but seems only to have been released in Region 4 so far.
The video quality is poor.
The audio quality is fine but mono.
The disc's best material is in the extras which total nearly 80 minutes of sketches by classic characters.
|DVD||Pioneer DV667A DVD-V DVD-A SACD, using Component output|
|Display||Sony FD Trinitron Wega KV-AR34M36 80cm. Calibrated with Digital Video Essentials (PAL). This display device is 16x9 capable. This display device has a maximum native resolution of 576i (PAL)/480i (NTSC).|
|Audio Decoder||Built in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with Video Essentials.|
|Speakers||Bose 201 Direct Reflecting (Front), Phillips SB680V (Surround), Phillips MX731 (Center), Yamaha YST SW90 (Sub)|