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4.5 out of 5 stars
ROBIN OF SHERWOOD: THE COMPLETE COLLECTION
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60 of 61 people found the following review helpful
on April 12, 2009
Format: DVD
It's been years since my old VCR recordings of this show pretty much wore out and bit the dust, so I was thrilled to find out it was available on DVD.
Robin of Sherwood was a favorite of my pre-teen years and has held up very well with it's combination of history,legend and fantasy. Some of the special effects are dated, but that's to be expected.
The real strength of the series was in the characters. It may have been the best cast version of the story. Clive Mantle is the best Little John, Phil Rose is the best Friar Tuck, and so on through the entire cast. There's even the addition of Nasir who, with his man of few words demeanor and two sword fighting style was just about the coolest thing a D and D loving 12 years old had ever seen.
I do think the quality fell off a little when Jason Connery joined the show, though not through any fault of his own. The writing focused more on plot then characters in that season and the chemistry suffered a bit from it. I would actually give the Michael Praed episodes a full five stars.
All in all I'm glad to have found it and any minor flaws in the series are far, far out weighed by its strengths. If you where a fan of the show you should definitely get your hands on a copy. Though given the price it's worth knowing it's available on Netflix. And I'm fairly certain fans of the Robin Hood legend in general will be more then pleased with this production.
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40 of 41 people found the following review helpful
on January 24, 2009
Format: DVDVerified Purchase
The series is excellent and faithful to the literary history surrounding the Robin Hood legends. Clannad's music adds a bit of authenticity, as does the use of magic and superstition, and the UK setting.

Acorn did a reasonably good job digitizing and adding subtitles to the original film. Colour was on the dark side, but nothing that can't be adjusted.

The poor packaging of the 'complete' set prevents me from giving it a perfect score. I like the look and the folding-book concept of it, but the casing is made of hard plastic, making it prone to chipping and difficult to remove the DVDs carefully without breaking or cracking them. I had a similar problem with the "I Spy - Four-Pack Collection" cases. So, take care to remove the DVDs lest you damage them permanently. You might consider alternative storage like a plastic CD envelope case, considering this DVD set is not cheap.

Aside from this, I highly recommend the complete Robin Hood set.
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
on May 14, 2012
Format: DVDVerified Purchase
I avidly watched this series back in the day when it was on our local PBS station. The beautiful countryside and good sets that look as it did in the medievel age add to the stories. It was a good move to shoot in England. The color is sometime smeary and not clear but I can overlook that. The music is fantastic. I love Clannad.I have to agree with the reviews that say the packaging is horrible. The discs are almost impossible to remove. I immediately put them in other sleeves which leaves me with a nice looking but not functional case that I can't use. That is a big waste. Reviewers who say the legend says this and the legend says that are missing the point that it IS a legend and in the retelling it got more fantastic and farther away from any truth that may have been in the original stories. No one knows who this man or men really were and how many followed him and what exactly went on. Since we'll never know who he was if he had a lady, who his men were (if any) we can't say the characters are wrong the stories not following the "original" legend or anything like that. I give the producers and writers big points for showing the Norman nobility as uncaring conquerors who barely tolerated living amongst the English types, who rolled over the serfs and peasants like they were nothing, and easily killed anyone they liked for any reason they liked. The abuses are clear and they don't whitewash the "Great King" Richard but show him as a Norman conqueror who historically spent almost no time in England only spoke French and could not care less what happened to the people. Unlike other Robin Hood movies where he comes in on a white horse and saves them from the evil King John, in the end he stayed gone and died far away never thinking of his "people". The serfs live in squalor everyone gets dirty, betrayal and treachery are as they would be when people are so desperate and trying to survive. These people could not read, had little recreation, no education, lived in constant fear and turned to magical legends and pagan beliefs for hope when they felt totally helpless. These were dark ages and Robin Hood legends gave them secret hope and self respect. I was surprised at some of the writing of the episodes that didn't gloss over the hard way people lived in those days and how easily they could lose their lives due to someone's whim. It explains a lot about the British behavior toward people they conquered in later history. This series has a lot of drama taken from history which makes it even more interesting and makes me glad I did not live in days of old when knights were bold I promise ya!
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
on August 22, 2008
Format: DVDVerified Purchase
Picture is fuzzy not digitallly remastered. Also Disk 2 had a glitch in it on the first play. Disk is clean. Over all quality is not great.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
on April 25, 2009
Format: DVDVerified Purchase
I watched this series over 18+ years ago, when my oldest son was just born. I have been waiting for the day when it would be widely available in the US and on DVD, because up until a couple years ago it was only available for International sale and only in VHS format. If your a true Robin Hood fan as I consider myself then I feel you'll very much enjoy this DVD Mini Series, the fact that is was only three seasons long means that the creator and his development team had to made every episode count and they do, action, fantasy, romance there's something for everyone. I recommend you pick this one up!
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
on June 22, 2012
Format: DVDVerified Purchase
I first discovered Robin Of Sherwood via the Public Broadcast System here in America. The local university channel carried it under the name Robin Hood. It was the best version of Robin Hood I had ever seen. I've seen several since, and in my opinion it is still the best by far. This may seem odd because of all the very unhistorcal magic, but this series comes closer to the spirit of the orginal 15th-century ballads than any other. In this version Robin is a yoeman rather than a disposessed noble. A couple of the original ballads are included in the stories, such as the tale of Sir Richard-at-Lea and the money he owes the local abbot. The acting is uniformly good and the interiors and exteriors feel real.

One of the fun parts involves the games. Robin and his men train themselves with archery contests and mock fights, and several episodes feature these games in various forms, all in fun.

It was the first version to have a Saracen character. Since then the movies and shows have all included one, none of them ever as good as Mark Ryan playing Nasir.

In my opinion it is also the only series or movie that gets King Richard right. The stories either center around the ransom collected when Richard was captured on his way home from the crusades or around the hope that all will be well when Richard finally returns. The only problem is that Richard was only back in England for a few months before he took off again to make war on France, where he was killed. If Richard saves the day for Robin in the fight against evil Prince John then what happens to Robin a year later when Richard dies and John becomes king? Robin of Sherwood gets around that by having Richard be portrayed (by the wonderful John Rhys-Davies) as the hard-bitten tyrant he was. He pardons Robin and his band on the promise that they will join him in his new fight against the French. When they agree he forces his nobles, including the sheriff, to accept the outlaws as equals. When Robin later challenges the king to devote his resources to helping the poor rather than waste them on another war, Richard secretly orders Robin's assassination. The point is that Robin and his gang are going to be outlaws for as long as those in authority are self-serving, and are safe from no one.

Toward the end of the second series Michael Praed, who played Robin of Loxley, decided to leave the series. Rather than find a lookalike actor they hit on a novel idea. There is one late legend, almost certainly false, which identifies Robin Hood with Robert, the Earl of Huntingdon. Since they had already had their Robin be chosen as 'The Hooded Man' by the Celtic forest god Herne the Hunter, they decided to kill off Loxley and have him replaced by Robert of Huntingdon, played by Jason Connery. It was a good move and the series went for another 13 episodes in that form, and had some of their best shows.

The final selling point for me was the amazing music by Clannad. At the time I described it as being "as green as the forest itself." I became a fan for life and now own all their albums. A remarkable group created remarkable music for a remarkable show.

Overall Robin Of Sherwood still gets my vote as the most historical and most fun version of Robin Hood.

Herne protect us.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on January 21, 2009
Format: DVDVerified Purchase
Amazingly wonderful Robin Hood series. Great characters, many historical facts correct. The best non-cheesy Robin Hood I've seen so far! Don't miss out!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on September 12, 2010
Format: DVDVerified Purchase
This bought back so many memories of sitting down on Saturday evening to watch this series. The haunting soundtrack music of Clannad, the wonderful atmospheric forest and castle scenes, the good acting (on the whole) and overall entertainment value on a TV budget makes this a fantastic series.

The quality may not be HD but overall it is very watchable and replaces my worn out VHS copies.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on March 3, 2011
Format: DVDVerified Purchase
I was absolutely thrilled by the fact that this series was released on DVD because I used to watch it as a child many years ago. The series includes all episodes involving both Robins and some nice extras. My only real complain is that the case feels like a DVD deathtrap. You have to have surgical precision and extra extra care to remove each DVD as doing otherwise would guarantee one or more shattering. I will agree with all reviews that mention the casing as a letdown as it is seriously a handle with care issue. Sure, you can store the DVDs in a different container but then the whole concept of a book set becomes meaningless.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on October 6, 2009
Format: DVDVerified Purchase
Without a doubt the best portrayal of the Robin Hood stories that I have ever seen. I won't say it's perfect though, but it is more realistic, even with the "magic and mystical" element which helps to create a real period feel to the production. Where the series excells is the attention given to casting and the characterisation. These guys look and feel real and "just right" for the part. Every other version I have seen, whether it be movie or series, never makes the mark in my view in this regard. The sets and costumes are wonderful. Given the budget, and the special effects facilities of the time, this production is nothing short of a miracle. In fact, if the FX of today were available, it may have detracted from the series, because there is a tendency to overdo, losing realism and character development at the same time. Worth every cent.
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