Customer Review

283 of 292 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A bargain set- a MUST OWN, not rent, July 19, 2012
This review is from: Downton Abbey Seasons 1 & 2 Limited Edition Set - Original UK Version (DVD)
This series is undoubtedly going to be as long-lived a hit as Upstairs, Downstairs. It ranks in the British perfection class with Foyle's War. It's a Period Costume Drama series with plenty of mega-stars. The magnificent performance of Maggie Smith in a less-than leading role shines through every time she's on the screen (very often), even when she has no lines. Her facial delivery is comic. A paragraph could be written for almost every cast member, each seem to feed off the other in making this a remarkable period drama that takes the viewer back to the era, like it is real.

Robert Crawley (Hugh Bonneville) is the man behind the estate, but it is Mr. Carson (Jim Carter), the butler, who keeps the house and social lives moving. There are 12 cast members that have a role in EVERY episode. Many more who miss just one or two. You fall in love with each in their own way, each a vital role in the make-up of this large family and servants. Not an issues is untouched, since every episode blends threads of intrigue, love, and history.

The home, the countryside scenes, even WWI segments, the costumes, the sets, the music, the props, the...well, it's easier to say there is nothing about this series my wife and I have been even remotely disappointed with. If you don't own the original released DVDs this is a must buy. And with the rest of the world, you will then be awaiting season three, knowing it will be SIX-star worthy as well. Created and written by Julian Fellowes who last acted in Monarch of the Glen (another keeper). He and his daughter combined in a book, also a must own for Downton Abbey fans.

I give this UK DVD series a 6-star super recommendation.
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Comments

Tracked by 5 customers

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Showing 1-10 of 22 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Jul 20, 2012 5:49:02 AM PDT
Loxley1801PA says:
Is this an Unedied version ?

In reply to an earlier post on Jul 20, 2012 11:11:36 AM PDT
Harold Wolf says:
If you read the first line in bold print in the section ahead of the customer reviews on this item's listing it states: "The original and unedited UK version of both seasons of the hit show Downton Abbey."

In reply to an earlier post on Jul 20, 2012 11:21:57 AM PDT
Loxley1801PA says:
I have seen multiple UK versions listed is why I asked.

In reply to an earlier post on Jul 21, 2012 9:40:53 AM PDT
Harold Wolf says:
Ah-ha, Loxley, you may be right. If there are multiple versions out there, and you order from Amazon.com, and you get one off of this listing and it is NOT original and unedited; then at least you have a legitimate reason to ask for a refund. Amazon is good about that, from my own experience.
I can't imagine why any portion would be edited out, unless it is the review portion ahead of each episode. There is not a dialogue line int the entire two years of episodes that's not worth it's merit. We love it that much. Enjoy.

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 9, 2012 6:25:31 PM PDT
BNB says:
Harold, my sisters and I viewed seasons 1 & 2 in what I have since found out is called "binge viewing." Your review is spot on! Like Loxley I am confused with the two discs I viewed and the set I just ordered that will not be released until this October. This "set" is described as "unedited." All that I was able to find on this October 2012 release I've listed below. However, I still am not sure what "unedited UK version" means.
Movie Description
DVD Release Date: October 2, 2012 | Language: English
The original and unedited UK version of both seasons of the hit show Downton Abbey.
Season 1 Bonus Features include "Making of Downton Abbey - A House in History" and "Great British Heritage Pass, a promotional spot for British tourism."
Season 2 of the Emmy® Award-winning Downton Abbey returns as The Great War rages across Europe, and not even the serene Yorkshire countryside is free from its effects. The men and women of Downton are doing their part both on the front lines and the home front, but the intensity of war only serves to inflame the more familiar passions-love, loss, blackmail, and betrayal.
Includes the Downton Abbey Christmas Special .
Season 2 Bonus Features include "Fashion and Uniforms," "Romance in a Time of War" and "House to Hospital."
This DVD set features subtitles in English (SDH).

Posted on Aug 11, 2012 11:04:46 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Aug 11, 2012 11:07:46 PM PDT
8-11-12: The point seems to be that this is a review of the series and NOT the 2-season unedited special Blu-ray due to be released in October. But I see this all the time in these Amazon reviews, where people may have seen something on TV and then written a review of, say, the Blu-ray without actually watching the Blu-ray. In this case, the package isn't even due to be released until October 2012, so, unless this person happened to have access to a British import, it's doubtful he's even seen the specific set in question. The above was written by someone who, like many of us, loves "Downton Abbey," but he's not written one word about the Blu-ray package nor how it differs from the edited version of the series. I've sometimes seen identical reviews printed under both the DVD AND the Blu-ray versions of the same title, which makes one hesitant to put much credence in some of these, ahem, "reviews."

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 12, 2012 5:01:28 AM PDT
Harold Wolf says:
Mr. Hardcastle, being a new reviewer, you have not noticed as yet that Amazon is the source for posting reviews to both DVD and Blu-ray listings. If you look at the beginning of the review, under the reviewer's name, it will post where the review was posted. But then, as in this case, my DVD review was automatically posted by Amazon to the Blu-ray listing. It has little to do with the reviewer, and we reviewers have no control of additional postings once it is posted. Hope that helps you understand the process better.
By the way, this is an obvious repackaging of previous DVDs to reach new viewers before the 2013 new Downton Abbey series is aired on TV.
And, can you confirm what I've been told by DVD rental shops, that Blu-ray is usually only significantly better on mega-size screens. With most film footage now being shot in HD, a "normal" viewing screen of less than 40" looks about the same. Blu-ray on a computer or smaller screen is wasted. Is that true Ron?
Thanks, HW.

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 17, 2012 9:23:55 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Aug 17, 2012 9:26:27 PM PDT
Yes, it had seemed obvious to me that it was probably Amazon that passed around such reviews to different formats of the same title without regard to the wishes of the reviewers themselves or the appropriateness of doing so. Thank you. I watch my Blu-rays through both Samsung and Panasonic (DMP-BDT220) players with an Onkyo TX-NR906 7.1 receiver and 8 large speakers with more than enough power to be heard a block away (if I'm not careful). It's all hooked into my Samsung LCD HD 55 inch tv, and, as you pointed out, some Blu-rays aren't so much better than their DVD counterparts that it's worth RE-buying them, a quandary I often face since I own over 4,000 DVDs and have to force myself not to re-buy every DVD I've liked just to have it in the new format. I recently loaned my secondary Blu-ray player to a lady at work and typed up a list of all my Blu-rays for her to choose a dozen and realized, not for the first time, that compulsive buying isn't always a wise thing to do. I kept asking myself "Why in the world did I buy THAT???" Plus, at the age of 69, I also ask myself "How many times can you possibly watch that again?" I can stream the first season of "Downton Abbey" via Netflix and have kept the second season from PBS on my DVR, so both seasons are easily accessible from DVDs, but I'm such a compulsive I have little doubt that I'm going to buy the above 2-season special due out in October in higher resolution. A friend came over a while back and exclaimed "That looks like 3D!!!," which was thrilling, although, with one eye weaker than the other, I have no intention of ever getting into actual 3D myself. Of course this is, for you, the classic "More info than I need to know." The main point is that we both adore "Downton Abbey." Incidentally, wanting to have favorite moments of it easily accessible, I was able to burn some favorite scenes from the 2nd season to DVD, particularly when they're singing "If You Were The Only Girl In The World" and Matthew suddenly materializes, plus that scene in the obviously fake snow when Matthew proposes -- both scenes bring me to tears and I'm looking forward to having it all in higher def. As for your question about Blu-ray possibly only significantly better on larger screens, I would guess that that is probably true, but I've personally only watched them on my own large screen so I have nothing to compare it to -- except those gasps from my neighbor when she first looked at my screen. Let's hope they do a similarly good job with season 3, although I already have reservations about them bringing in an instantly recognizable American actress (Shirley MacLain), probably mainly as a new foil for Maggie Smith. Let's finally resolve the Bates matter and put the 2 meanies into stocks! One final point. Several months ago "Saturday Night Live" did a brief satire on "Downton" which I found hysterical, and I quickly burned it to DVD for myself. You can find it on YouTube if you've not had the pleasure. Cheers! Ron

Posted on Aug 31, 2012 1:24:57 PM PDT
[Deleted by the author on Aug 31, 2012 1:53:31 PM PDT]

Posted on Aug 31, 2012 1:54:31 PM PDT
KittyKins says:
BUYER BEWARE! Unlike the previous releases of seasons 1 & 2, the blu-ray version is listed as NOT widescreen, but an aspect ratio of 1:33. Whether this is an error or not, we will not know until it comes out!
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