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Wodehouse Playhouse: Series One
|List Price:||CDN$ 51.86|
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P.G. Wodehouse himself introduces each episode of Wodehouse Playhouse; a ringing endorsement, eh, what? This much-loved 1975 series, a sparkling jewel in the BBC crown, brings to the screen several of Wodehouse's most delightful stories and eccentric characters, as embodied by John Alderton and Pauline Collins, the real-life couple perhaps best known stateside for their endearing series No, Honestly, as well as their stints on Upstairs, Downstairs. Sadly, Jeeves and Wooster are absent in these tales, but the daft Mulliver family is here, in "The Truth About George," "Romance at Droitgate Spa," "Portrait of a Disciplinarian," "Unpleasantness at Bludleigh Court," and "A Voice from the Past." "Rodney Fails to Qualify," one of Wodehouse's famed golf stories, is anything but par for the course, as a clueless young man almost loses his beloved golfing partner to a poet. Only the Hollywood tale "The Rise of Minna Nordstrom" is a bit of a letdown, but is redeemed by Collins's considerable charms. This series is faithful to Wodehouse's gentle humor and his nimble use of language ("Dogface, my demon lover, you did not endear yourself," rebukes one woman to her companion in one story). For his devoted readers, or better, for those yet to have the pleasure of his literary company, Wodehouse Playhouse is jolly good! --Donald Liebenson
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Top Customer Reviews
Each half-hour episode stars the pair in a classic P.G. Wodehouse story. The stories help show the range of these talents. Alderton can be a stuttering Milquetoast, swishy poet, a prestidigitator, blustering producer, or even a forceful suitor. Each episode is introduced by P.G. Wodehouse himself.
The Truth About George is about a stutterer trying to overcome his impediment so that he can propose to the woman he loves.
Romance at Droitgate Spa tells of snobbery amongst the ill and a romance beset by a mad magician.
Portrait of a Disciplinarian has to childhood friends visiting their addled but still stern nanny for tea.
Unpleasantness at Bludleigh Court has two poets in love overcome by the blood curse of the house full of hunters.
The Rise of Minna Nordstrom tells of how a chambermaid rose to stardom in Hollywood during Prohibition.
Rodney Fails to Qualify has a mild golfer competing for a woman's love with a non-golfing poet.
A Voice from the Past tells of a mix-up with a correspondence course and childhood memories of stern teachers.
Each story is a classic and will be enjoyed by Wodehouse fans (Jeeves & Wooster, Blandings Castle, Mulliner, etc.) and fans of British humor.
I found Wodehouse's intros priceless. Even as a nonagenarian, he was worth almost the price of the whole set -- so droll, so amused with appreciation of human folly, so skilled at a twinkly-eyed but not unduly harsh presentation of foibles. Every word he said was both easy (for me) to understand and well worth hearing. How marvelous to have this personal record of a great humorist! I only wish we had seen more of him. What I wouldn't give to see Oscar Wilde or Jane Austen or several others similarly introduce performances of their works!
This set is also a great bargain. Perhaps the sound and picture are not up to today's standards, but they did not distract from my enjoyment in the least. The "Jeeves and Wooster" set is indeed better Wodehouse than this set, only because J&W is perfect while this one is merely close to perfect, but both are worth at least five stars to this picky reviewer. Anyone who does not like Wodehouse and his marvelously framed understated absurdities deserves to spend eternity watching Hollywood potboilers and US sitcoms.
Most recent customer reviews
Alderton and collins are extraordinarily versatile in these Wodehouse adaptations, which sparkle with classic wit and humour, not to mention verbal brilliance. Read morePublished on Feb. 7 2012 by Old Anglican
I bought this DVD because of all the Jeeves and Wooster stories I have watched, read, and listened to over the last 18 years. Read morePublished on April 23 2004 by Peter Smith
I say old thing, I didn't even know about this series until I happened upon it here on Amazon. Once I read all the other great reviews I had to have it. Read morePublished on Feb. 4 2004 by Michelle Bowden
It's unfortunate that the first episode involved stuttering. This must be a painful memory for some people, and they can hardly be expected to react favorably. Read morePublished on Oct. 8 2003 by bookloversfriend
I never read any of P.G. Wodehouse's literary works until after I began watching the Wodehouse Playhouse on our local PBS channel in the early 1980's. Read morePublished on June 17 2003 by Robin
Really unusual people must have written the other reviews. Funny? Did they say funny? This isn't funny . . . Read morePublished on April 14 2003
Blessings upon the heads of those at Acorn Media! At last I can retire some of the VHS tapes on which I taped these off the air back in the mid-80s. Read morePublished on March 9 2003 by C. Williamson
I have been waiting 25 years for this classic BBC series! From the moment I saw the first episode, "Unpleasantness at Bludleigh Court", I was hooked on the series. Read morePublished on March 2 2003 by Book Reviewer
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