93 of 106 people found the following review helpful
I have seen the COMPLETE original series and recommend all-old & new
, March 21, 2011
This review is from: Upstairs, Downstairs (2010) (DVD)
Here's the old and new UP/Down info. After airing of "The Forsyte Saga" (a must series also), Eileen Atkins and Jean Marsh dreamed up the "Upstairs Downstairs" concept. Jean stared as Rose in the 70s TV blockbuster, and now continues that role in the continuation of the story on Brit TV (Dec '10). 3 episodes (alas only 3) advance the story now to 1936, with a new cast (excepting Marsh who is in both the old and new) and also now including Atkins as Maud. You get the same house, same music, same title. After "Upstairs Downstairs" the pair of actresses combined again in creating "The House of Elliott", another period saga, bloody good Brit drama, an absolute must own "complete collection."
No disappointment from me or my wife with the 2010 3 episode addition compared to the older TV blockbuster series. The new cast keeps up the believable, compelling stories and character delight. Rose and the house (+ music) gives the old lovers the flavor of the past, even if the interior has been redecorated to 1936. It takes only the 1st episode to fall in love with the new upstairs and downstairs families of 165. Excellent cast. With the long bonus feature, there is a hint at more. For me...like handing a fat man a box of chocolates and asking, "Do you want more?" YES!
Interesting that they had the "to be King Geo VI" in the show, prior to the abdication of his King brother, and he did not stutter. After the success of "The King's Speech" about the same time as this series release, that bit of trivia is evident.
As for the original "Upstairs Downstairs" series. It is 27-year span epic winning 9 Emmys, 2 BAFTAs, Golden Globe & a Peabody Award, 31 nominations. The aristocratic Bellamy's of 165 Eaton Place, London, live upstairs over the downstairs clockwork servant aid led by butler Hudson (Gordon Jackson). Classic Edwardian masterful plots in this funny and dramatic back time-travel over 3 decades inside the Bellamy house. A crowning British achievement in the 70's and worth owning today. Since it's period drama it never goes out of style. It's a British TV saga classic.
Sir Richard Bellamy MP (David Langton) and Lady Marjorie (Rachel Gurney) have heir Lt James (Simon Williams) and Miss Elizabeth (Nicola Pagett-`A Bit of a Do') who need quite a crew downstairs to keep their house in order. Mrs. Bridges (Angela Brddeley) cooks up a storm, while maid Rose (Jean Marsh, co-creator) helps keep linens and affairs tidy. The pilot (an alternate plot pilot available) introduces new servant Sarah (Pauline Collins), who adds saucy spice to the house on both ends of the stairs. Footman Alfred (George Innes) who quotes Bible, Perce (Brian Osborne) is lady's-man coachman during carriage years, Thomas (John Alderton) chauffeur in later auto episodes. The star studded cast is endless. I strongly recommend you get the 40th Collection and see it while waiting for the new 21st century produced episodes DVD to be released.
This newest release (40th Anniversary Collection) provides 21 discs in 5 solid cases all in the anniversary storage sleeve. Quite an improvement from the earlier release. 68 episodes, each about 50 min. Add 25 bonus hrs and you have a value, not to mention the dynamic dramatic entertainment including romance, mystery, drama, historical significance, humor, suspense, & more. Episodes 2,3,4,5,&7 are B/W due to a technicians strike. Pilot was remade in color. The features + bonus time total divided by the current Amazon price makes the HOURLY entertainment cost less than $1.87. A VALUE! Compare that to the new release with only 3 episodes.
SUBTITLES-Anniversary set OFFERS SUBTITLES,like the new episodes. Helpful for some of us. A Jean Marsh memories insert is included and created in Oct. 2010.
And YES, I bought the new 3 episodes to go with the older episodes. And hoping for more.
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