The Two Ronnies-Series 1 (1971)

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Released 3-Jul-2007

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Comedy None
Rating Rated PG
Year Of Production 1971
Running Time 355:10 (Case: 354)
RSDL / Flipper Dual Layered
Dual Disc Set
Cast & Crew
Start Up Ads Then Menu
Region Coding 4 Directed By James Gilbert
Terry Hughes
Marcus Mortimer
Brian Penders
Studio
Distributor

Roadshow Home Entertainment
Starring None Given
Case Amaray-Opaque-Dual
RPI ? Music Ronnie Hazlehurst


Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame Full Frame English Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
Widescreen Aspect Ratio None
16x9 Enhancement No
Video Format 576i (PAL)
Original Aspect Ratio 1.33:1 Miscellaneous
Jacket Pictures No
Subtitles English for the Hearing Impaired Smoking Yes
Annoying Product Placement No
Action In or After Credits No

NOTE: The Profanity Filter is ON. Turn it off here.

Plot Synopsis

    For 16 years the bespectacled duo of Ronnie Barker and Ronnie Corbett presented The Two Ronnies, one of Britain's longest running and most popular variety shows. The show itself was tightly packed with skits and performances from live entertainers and musicians.

    Each of the 8 episodes in this first season follows a very structured formula, breaking up recurring skits, variety performances and monologues in a nearly identical order. Each episode features one of Ronnie Corbett's meandering and ever-amusing monologues, two musical performances, one performance by a live entertainer, an episode of an ongoing spoof period mini-series and a handful of one-off skits.

    The highlights of the series are the ongoing period drama spoof Hampton Wick, the so-awkward-it-makes-you-cringe "bald man at a cocktail party" sketch and a sketch featuring Ronnie Barker as Queen Elizabeth I.

    Each episode of this first season features performances from the folk-rock trio New World and singer Tina Charles. Each performance is a cover of a well known tune. These performance are fairly pleasant, but are really nothing more than padding (and a bit like watching karaoke).

    The humour holds up very well as there is very little in the way of topical humour in this particular series (even mock news items tend to be general enough, they are timeless). The only spoof that is featured is the multi-part spoof of period BBC drama, which hold up as well today as it ever did - possibly even better today, as it highlights just how little period drama has changed in more than 30 years of television! Most of sketches are rather silly bits and pieces that ridicule generic situations.

    Fans of the show will be very pleased with this DVD set. There are very few weak sketches in the entire series. Anyone new to The Two Ronnies would do well to check out one of the "best of" sets that are also available before picking up this set.

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Transfer Quality

Video

    The video is presented in its original 1.33:1 aspect and is not 16x9 enhanced (nor should it be).

    The video is quite clear, free of grain and significant low level noise. The image is a little soft by modern standards, but very sharp by 1970s standards. Likewise, the colour is a little pale by modern standards, but fairly typical for the era. The colour palette is consistent throughout and there is plenty of detail in blacks and other dark areas. All up it looks like very well preserved old video.

    There are no significant MPEG compression artefacts visible. Edge enhancement is noticeable in many of the sketches, but it does not detract from the picture in this instance. Some sketches show signs of film artefacts, but not in enough size or quantity to hamper viewing.

    English subtitles for the hearing impaired are present. They appear to be accurate and well-timed.

    Both discs in this set are RSDL discs, but have their layer breaks placed between episodes to prevent any interruption of playback.

Video Ratings Summary
Sharpness
Shadow Detail
Colour
Grain/Pixelization
Film-To-Video Artefacts
Film Artefacts
Overall

Audio

    One mono Dolby Digital 2.0 (192 Kbps) soundtrack is featured for each episode.

    The audio sounds fairly dated in terms of dynamic range, but it is clean and well preserved. The audio sounds as it was intended when the show first aired.

    The dialogue is quite clear and appears to be well synchronised throughout each episode.

    There is not much in the way of music throughout the show, save for the theme music and musical interludes. The music featured sounds fairly good for the age of the recording.

    There is no surround speaker or subwoofer usage (and it would seem rather out of place if there was).

Audio Ratings Summary
Dialogue
Audio Sync
Clicks/Pops/Dropouts
Surround Channel Use
Subwoofer
Overall

Extras

    There are no extras on this set.

R4 vs R1

NOTE: To view non-R4 releases, your equipment needs to be multi-zone compatible and usually also NTSC compatible.

    An identical set is available in Region 2. This set is not available in Region 1.

Summary

    The Two Ronnies has aged surprisingly gracefully. The humour is certainly a little dated, but still surprisingly funny. Definitely worth watching for anybody feeling nostalgic.

    The video and audio are both very well preserved, but still look and sound like video from the early 1970s.

    There are no extras.

Ratings (out of 5)

Video
Audio
Extras
Plot
Overall

© Adam Gould (Totally Biolicious!)
Monday, August 27, 2007
Review Equipment
DVDSony Playstation 3, using HDMI output
Display Samsung 116cm LA46M81BD. Calibrated with THX Optimizer. This display device is 16x9 capable. This display device has a maximum native resolution of 576i (PAL).
Audio DecoderPioneer VSX-D512. Calibrated with Video Essentials/Digital Video Essentials.
AmplificationPioneer VSX2016AVS
Speakers150W DTX front speakers, and a 100W centre and 2 surrounds, 12 inch PSB Image 6i powered sub

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