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Roy Clarke's Open All Hours: The Complete Series


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Roy Clarke's Open All Hours: The Complete Series + Fawlty Towers: The Complete Collection Remastered
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Product Details

  • Actors: Ronnie Barker, David Jason
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Box set, Color, Full Screen, NTSC, Subtitled
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 1.0)
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 3
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: BBC Home Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: June 9, 2009
  • Run Time: 739 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (81 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B001T21R6Y
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #54,842 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Special Features

  • All four seasons on four discs
  • 1973 pilot episode
  • Roy Clarke profile
  • Due to music clearance issues, certain edits have been made

Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Open All Hours: Complete Series (DVD)

Amazon.com

Already old-fashioned when the show was made, Open All Hours now seems like a glimpse into a much earlier world. Ronnie Barker (The Two Ronnies) stars as Arkwright, a tight-fisted middle-aged Doncaster shopkeeper, while David Jason (Only Fools and Horses) as Arkwright's nephew Granville makes deliveries by bicycle in a manner more evocative of the 1930s than the '70s. Barker's relationship with Jason parallels his rapport with Richard Beckinsale in Porridge (1974-78), and while the pair may not be in prison, the confines of the small general dealer's shop often seem like that to Granville. Even though at 36 Jason seems way too old to play the supposedly teenage Granville, he and Barker make a great double act. The dry Northern humor centers mostly on money and sex, the latter interest in Arkwright's case being the buxom charms of Nurse Gladys Emmanuel, very well played by Lynda Baron. Like writer Roy Clarke's Last of the Summer Wine, the episodes are more amusing character sketches than stories. The four-disc set includes all four seasons of the original U.K. show, a reasonably detailed text biography of series writer Roy Clarke, and, much more notably, a complete bonus episode--the 1973 series pilot. --Gary S Dalkin

Customer Reviews

My whole family loved this series when it was on PBS many years ago.
Howard Roarke
I now have the convenience of watching each and every episode because all 26 episodes are here at my fingertips.
Love England!
Packaging is simple yet adequate and there have been no problems with any of the discs.
SickLittleBoy

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

63 of 64 people found the following review helpful By Howie on March 16, 2009
Format: DVD
"Open All Hours" (1976 - 1985) is #8 on the "Britian's Best Sitcom" list from a poll conducted in 2004 by the BBC, ITV, and Channel 4. Instead of drawn out, overpriced, single series releases we get the entire program of 4 series (25 episodes) at once this time at a reasonable price! Special features are to include the pilot which aired as an episode of the 1973 series "Seven of One".

Written by Roy Clarke ("Last of the Summer Wine", "Keeping Up Appearances") the series takes place primarily in a small grocer's shop, in Doncaster in South Yorkshire. The owner, a middle-aged, tight-fisted man, will stop at nothing to keep his profits high and his overhead low. He has a pronounced stammer and a knack of being able to sell anything. His put upon nephew is his errand boy, whose attempts at a love-life or even just a social life fall flat. He blames his uncle that he has to be up early to open the shop and stay late to close it.

Nurse Gladys Emmanuel, Arkwright's long-standing fiancée, and only weakness, lives across the road. Arkwright spends an inordinate amount of time attempting to make her marry, or at least sleep with him.

The primary characters in the series are:
Ronnie Barker (Porridge) - Arkwright, the shop owner
David Jason (Only Fools and Horses) - Granville, his nephew
Lynda Baron - Nurse Gladys Emmanuel

Keep your eyes open for Kathy Staff (Last Of the Summer Wine) and Stephanie Cole (Waiting For God) as customers.

Sometimes quaint, sometimes dark, and always with that dry British humor and penchant for the double entendre this is another in a string of fabulously funny sitcoms from across the pond!
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30 of 31 people found the following review helpful By Mr. Mambo on June 24, 2009
Format: DVD
I am very glad to see that this hilarious series is finally out on DVD here in our US region. I would rate this as easily one of the top twelve Brit coms of all time (my other favorites being Fawlty Towers, Last of the Summer Wine, The Young Ones, If Wishes Were Horses, Little Britain, Absolutely Fabulous, Are You Being Served, Keeping Up Appearances, As Time Goes By, One Foot in the Grave, and Waiting for God).

Ronnie Barker does a magnificent job as shopkeeper Arkwright, a stout, middle-aged proprietor of a small grocery in an unnamed Yorkshire town. After watching about thirty seconds of Episode 1 you will realize that (1) he has an extremely amusing stuttering habit; (2) he is notoriously tightfisted and (3) he lusts after his neighbor, the plain but amply-proportioned Nurse Gladys Emmanuel. What makes the show for me are the wonderful conversations between the--let's be honest here--very horny Arkwright and the resistant Gladys. He's constantly on the offensive, and nurse Gladys, a single woman caring for her invalid mother, puts up a good fight (she's neither naive nor a prude, and though she'd never admit it, she unconsciously welcomes the attention that this aging would-be lover showers upon her). Of course, the parsimonious Arkwright is very reluctant to open up the wallet too wide, even for the nurse. But as you will see, the promise of a kiss and a caress wins out.

This show is at least thirty years old, but it holds up well. The English, and Europeans in general, have long been much more tolerant of race than us Yanks, and also do not seem anywhere near as hung up about sex. Consequently you have in Arkwright and nurse Gladys a couple of physically unspectacular middle-aged people who DO--particularly Arkwright--think about sex and pursue it.
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22 of 23 people found the following review helpful By Howard Roarke on July 9, 2009
Format: DVD
Ronnie Barker is a classic as is Jason his side kick. I wish they would put "The Two Ronnies" on DVD for the USA market. My whole family loved this series when it was on PBS many years ago. However, the management at PBS in the NYC area has very strange programing tastes and won't show this or some of the other superior Britoms, like "Yes Minister" and "Yes Prime Minister". Ronnie as Arkwright is the stereotypical English shop keeper. One of my favorites is when someone comes in and asks "Can you give me directions?". Ronnie's character, Arkwright looks at him, appalled and replies, "Give you directions?! GIVE YOU DIRECTIONS?! I could SELL you directions, or of course if you were to make a small token purchase, of course the directions would be free..." Ronnie's portrayal of the stuttering shop keeper is not to be missed. There is clever dialog and double entendre throughout. You will also spot a few other veteran Brit com actors such as the character, "The widow Twanky" (who later plaied the acerbic Diana Trent in the also brilliant "Waiting for God", and I believe the character is "Mrs. Bluett", who is paid by the gem of an actress who also plaid "Nora Batty" in "Last of the Summer Wine".

I have been looking for this series for years on DVD and it finally became available just in June 2009. It is British Comedy at its best!
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Love England! on June 9, 2011
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I used to watch this on my local PBS channel when it was on. When I saw the chance to get all 4 seasons (26)episodes for a great price I jumped on it. It comes in one cd case that holds all 4 cd's, compact-clean packaging.

This in my opinion is another classic British comedy. Although some may think It old fashioned I find it to be a lasting and endearing series. Arkwright as a small grocer, is always trying to make money (certainly not spend it lol), all the while persuing Nurse Gladys Emmmanuel, but his character is very likeable, and then there is Granville his long suffering Nephew who always longs for excitement in his life, as he works for Arkwright as an errand boy.As you watch,these characters become like old friends.

There is a text-biography of the series creator Roy Clarke, and a bonus episode (1973 series pilot). I am so glad they are offering this wonderful series on DVD. I am laughing my way through each and every disk. I now have the convenience of watching each and every episode because all 26 episodes are here at my fingertips.
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