Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|Danger Man - The Complete First Season|
Actor: Patrick McGoohan
Before The Avengers and the James Bond films, the pioneering 1960 British series Danger Man helped to usher in spy-mania in Great Britain. Patrick McGoohan stars as "Drake, John Drake," an agent of NATO's secret service br... more »
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The Journey Begins for John Drake
Richard Liedholm | Minneapolis, Mn United States | 11/06/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Recently, I received these DVDs from another source and I would like to strongly encourage all fans of the hour long Danger Man shows and The Prisoner to consider this set. First of all, the transfer is exceptional. The shows are remarkably clear in their black and white format. There is no fuzziness that I could see. Also, the half hour format suits the show well. The stories are as well plotted as the hour long show, just faster paced. And then there's the music. I actually perfer the score of the half hour shows to the score of the hour long programs. The music in these programs remind me of the type of music you would hear in the old series Peter Gunn, and anyone who is fortunate enough to have seen that series knows how much the music contributed to the overall effect of the show. Finally, the writing of the show is very strong. Of the twenty stories that I have viewed at the time of this review, only one stood out in my mind as a bit disappointing. That's a pretty good record for a weekly series.But what I think may be of most interest for fans of this series is Patrick MacGoohan. There is no question what an exceptional actor he is and that would be reason enough to buy this set. However, the John Drake of this show is slightly different than the one in the hour long programs. To me, he seems almost optimistic. I realize this is an odd word to use when referring to this series, but the impression is given that Drake really believes in his missions and that he is on the side of right. In the hour long show, Drake comes off more world weary, more cynical and a bit disillusioned. By the time he becomes The Prisoner (and we know it is him-who else could it be?) his faith in the morality of the political system has collasped completely. For after all, Drake is an extremely moral person, which is one of the elements that make him so fascinating to watch. It might be interesting for new viewers to start with the half hour series, go to the hour long shows, and then end the journey with The Prisoner. No doubt it will give them considerable food for thought.Though at the end of the day, one has to ask: Are these half hour shows entertaining? And the answer is: extremely so. I think you will be pleasantly surprised on how well the show was written, directed, and acted. I just hope everyone who buys this set enjoys it as much as I have!"
The Prisoner is incomplete without this
Kate Minola | singingmoonpress.com | 01/24/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"If you're a Prisoner fan, there's nothing quite like popping this set in for the first time and watching John Drake wander about Portmeirion in the first episode. That's all you need to know. If you've already seen it on 4th generation videotape from the early 80's, you will be blown away by how crisp and clear it is. I watched the new Babylon 5 set right after one of these Danger Man episodes and I couldn't believe all the snow on the newer show.For those of you unfamiliar with The Prisoner, I have to ask you to please ignore the way in which A&E are marketing this series. It's ludicrous. They seem to think putting "the spy who rarely carries a gun and isn't swayed by loose women" on the box is going to sell it. (Insert snore here....) Also, if you're looking at the package thinking "No sex, no guns... it must be good for the kids" you have to remember that everybody smoked and drank on these shows, and Drake is no exception. If that doesn't bother you, then it will be okay for the kids. The formula established here which combines the spy who relies heavily on acting skill with a series of exotic locations is still being used on Alias. Also, being filmed in black and white actually makes it feel less dated than shows like the Saint and the Avengers which overdid the color and "mod" style. Drake specializes in infiltrating bad guy inner circles and rescuing other spies, not gathering information or stealing blueprints, so you get a mix of gritty spy work with a mystery or P.I. flair. He often ignores the plans of his superiors and redesigns his missions. He also makes fun of unneccessary procedures thought up by other departments. (My coworkers are now using the Drakeism "Coffee and eggs for two." to describe procedures like this.)Ladies: the star of the show is Patrick McGoohan, 6 foot 2, athletic, a good flirt and even in greyscale he has the bluest eyes you've ever seen. He only gets more attractive when you get to know his character, Drake. John Drake is an opinionated but dedicated secret agent, a genuine good guy who regrets the bad things he sometimes has to do in his line of work. Gents (and ladies who like fights): McGoohan's sport in school was boxing, so he insisted on doing his own stunts and fights, raising the bar for later action stars. His longtime friend and stunt coordinator Frank Maher even said McGoohan could have been a stunt man. Every fight scene is different and there are quite a few stunts which aren't allowed anymore because of higher safety standards today. They are a treat to watch!Everybody: It's true Drake doesn't sleep with a new bird every episode, it doesn't mean there's no sexual tension. Women are constantly throwing themselves at him (And why not? Just look at him!), so his personal rule of avoiding romantic entanglements while working becomes a running joke. If you watch this set in conjunction with Secret Agent (seasons 2-4 are the continuation of this set) and the Prisoner, you can have a lot of fun watching the ideological Drake who skips four years of vacations evolve into the rebellious Drake who wonders what he's missing by not being married and finally (maybe?) the nameless Number 6 who is imprisoned in the Village after unexpectedly resigning from a top-secret position."
My name's Drake, John Drake.
Pentworth | West Haven, CT USA | 03/17/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"The half hour Danger Man first season is the best spy show ever and some of the best TV ever made. Each episode is concise and believable. They are fast paced with great dialogue and characterizations. The plots are intricate and the action moves with the speed of an Olympic ping-pong game. The casting is marvelous and represents a veritable who's who of British TV from the fifties and sixties.
McGoohan's conception of a master spy is admirable. He is completely self-possessed and reveals no weaknesses. Unlike the characters of the eternally adolescent Bond films, John Drake is no sexual predator or sap who can't keep his pants up. He is always a gentleman and immune to feminine seduction or waterworks. He is noble but no patsy. Drake is intelligent, and perceptive. To accomplish his missions, he would rather fool, trick, or deceive his enemies. He does not like violence, and avoids the rough stuff if possible, but when it is the last resort he can mix it up with the best.
When one considers that Danger Man precedes Goldfinger by five years, it is amazing how much style and pacing of the later Bond films seems influenced by Danger Man. The opening line of each episode (credits) "...Oh, and my name's Drake, John Drake."
One of the outstanding things about Patrick McGoohan's career is his choosing consistently high quality projects. Most of his projects are classics from Danger Man, Dr. Syn, the Prisoner, many BBC productions, and his brilliant Edward I in Braveheart. This is a long awaited treat. Don't miss it."
The Impossible Mr Magoohan
CLAY A MARCEAUX | PORT ARTHUR, TEXAS United States | 01/27/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)
"For those unfamiliar--Patrick Magoohan is the superstar who never quite was. Like his John Drake/No 6 TV equivalent Magoohan was impatient with the trappings of stardom and at the height of his fame-just quit. If Drake is a dense and difficult hero to embrace so Magoohan was an enigma who always danced to his own drummer forever more interested in his point than his fame and fans. Onry and intolerant of compromise Magoohan refused to embrace the leading man persona that would have assured him a career the equivalent of a Sean Connery Michael Caine or Roger Moore. With his patented clipped delivery and firely disposition this guy was one of a kind and these half hour teleplays feature the young lion at the very inception of his small screen career. No less than Orson Welles considered him one of the greatest living actors and admitted to being intimidated when he cast a young Magoohan opposite him in the stage play of "Moby Dick". Many of these stories suffer from short handed plotting due to there length but most compensate with skillful voice overs to get to the meat of the plot and both production values and print quality are fully the equal of the later series. Add the high caliber of the supporting cast and you come to realize how good viewers had it in 1960. Highly Recommended."