Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|Lovejoy The Complete Collection|
Actor: Ian McShane
For the first time ever, every Lovejoy episode and Christmas special is available together in this 22-disc gift set including over 63 hours of heart-stopping intrigue! Just call him Lovejoy. Ian McShane (Deadwood) stars a... more »
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Great series, lacking in special features...
J. Salzenstein | Boston, MA | 11/23/2009
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Fans of rascally part-time detective Lovejoy (Ian McShane, most recently of HBO's Deadwood) will be thrilled with the recent release of Lovejoy: The Complete Collection. Containing every episode on 22 discs, this complete set follows the antiques dealer with "a keen eye for beauty" through more than 63-hours of sleuthing, sexing, and crime stopping in stores, auction halls, and stately homes in Britain. A popular series in the U.K., Lovejoy gained a cult following in the U.S., and now the entire series is available in one set.
Lovejoy came before the days of DVDs, so extras are a bit limited. That said, die-hard fans will enjoy the included extras. An Interview with author Jonathan Gash is interesting (albeit not overly exciting), and explores the background for the show, stories, and characters, and how they developed. The real "meat," however, lies in the two extras that focus on the star.
The Interview with Ian McShane and Gwen Humble is entertaining and funny, not only offering a take on what went on behind the scenes, but also revealing the impact the role - and series - had on the actors. This sentiment is continued in the third and final feature, Ian McShane looks back on Lovejoy Parts 1-6, allowing him to offer additional tidbits of trivia, behind-the-scenes "secrets" and his take on the show.
Although the price is a bit high (Lovejoy: The Complete Collection retails for $300) given the lack of special features, you can find it much more reasonable on Amazon."
Lovejoy is the Best!
Steven Schafersman | 06/12/2010
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Lovejoy was one of the best television series ever offered on BBC and later shown in America. It had cult followings in both the UK and U.S. during its television showings. I watched almost every episode. Lovejoy (Ian McShane) is a "divvie," a person who can instinctively tell if an antique is authentic and valuable without consulting books or doing research. The term comes from the word "diviner" and it's a talent that few if any others possess. With such a talent Lovejoy is a natural for the antiques business, but his several character flaws prevent him from making a fortune. Instead, this lovable rogue gets himself in situations that are humorous, mysterious, and often exciting. Sometimes these involve crimes committed by others or by Lovejoy himself! In other episodes, Lovejoy helps to solve curious mysteries or helps some person in distress who seeks him out. Wonderful old antique objects are always a part of the plot and Lovejoy is not above sometimes creating or improving these in ways that satisfy a customer, pay off a debt, or get hilarious revenge on an unscrupulous adversary.
Lovejoy's friends--Tinker Dill, Eric Catchpole, and Lady Jane Felsham--are also amusing, often hilarious. Tinker is Lovejoy's inebriated sidekick who knows quite a bit about the antique business himself. Eric's character is really funny: a sullen, sometimes resentful assistant whom Lovejoy does not always treat with respect but who's actions always gets laughs. Lady Jane is Lovejoy's wealthy but married female friend who likes to hang out with the lovable rogue; she often financially aids Lovejoy and willingly and sometimes unwillingly helps facilitate his plots. There is an ambiguity about their personal relationship that continues throughout the series. Are they interested in each other romantically or not? Lovejoy is set to get married to someone else in the final episode of the series but with hilarious results. In fact, both Lady Jane and Eric disappear as characters in Series 6.
All of the episodes in the Lovejoy series were shown on television in the U.S. during the 1990s. Current viewers may know Ian McShane only from his character in Deadwood or perhaps the short-lived Kings. McShane is a really fine actor who completely envelopes his character and creates very satisfying drama. If you love British drama such as the popular murder mystery series (Inspector Morse, Foyle's War, Inspector Lewis) or historical dramas (Reilly, Ace of Spies, Love for Lydia, Brideshead Revisited, I, Claudius) or comedies (Rumpole of the Bailey), you will certainly love Lovejoy. I always eagerly watched each episode.
Now that the series is complete, I highly recommend that you purchase this complete collection. It is encoded for Region 1 and was converted from its original PAL format in which it was created to the NTSC format used in the U.S. From reviews I have read, it appears the conversion was accomplished satisfactorily. The complete Lovejoy collection has been available in PAL format in Great Britain since 2004, so it apparently took five years to get the conversion done properly. You can buy the complete PAL Lovejoy, in All Region format, from Amazon.co.uk for the same price as here. If you have only a Region 1 DVD player as most of us do you in all likelihood cannot play PAL DVDs because of Region locking (not a problem with this PAL set since it is All Region) and because the great majority of Region 1 DVD players have had their PAL playback ability disabled. Also, most NTSC display devices cannot display PAL images. For U.S. customers, it is probably better to just buy this new NTSC set and not worry that the PAL set (higher resolution than NTSC and originally shot in PAL) is probably better and available at the same price. I haven't seen the PAL set so I can't personally judge.
Note: Do not buy the Lovejoy Christmas Specials DVD if you buy this complete collection as Amazon suggests in its "Frequently Bought Together" section. The Lovejoy Complete Collection already includes the two Christmas specials.
Here is the Lovejoy episode list with original air dates:
1-1 10-Jan-1986 The Firefly Cage
1-2 17-Jan-1986 The Axeman Cometh
1-3 24-Jan-1986 The Sting
1-4 31-Jan-1986 Friends, Romans and Enemies
1-5 07-Feb-1986 The Judas Pair
1-6 14-Feb-1986 To Sleep No More
1-7 21-Feb-1986 The Real Thing
1-8 28-Feb-1986 The March of Time
1-9 07-Mar-1986 Death and Venice (1)
1-10 14-Mar-1986 Death and Venice (2)
2-1 06-Jan-1991 Just Desserts
2-2 13-Jan-1991 The Italian Venus
2-3 20-Jan-1991 Bin Diving
2-4 27-Jan-1991 Montezuma's Revenge
2-5 03-Feb-1991 Who Dares, Sings
2-6 10-Feb-1991 One Born Every Minute
2-7 17-Feb-1991 National Wealth
2-8 24-Feb-1991 Sugar and Spice
2-9 03-Mar-1991 Raise the Hispanic
2-10 10-Mar-1991 Lily's Pearls
2-11 17-Mar-1991 The Black Virgin of Vladimir
(recut into a two part episode on later transmissions, with the first part listed in the opening credits as "Riding in Rollers")
3-1 12-Jan-1992 Friends in High Places
3-2 19-Jan-1992 Out To Lunch
3-3 26-Jan-1992 No Strings
3-4 02-Feb-1992 Angel Trousers
3-5 09-Feb-1992 The Benin Bronze
3-6 16-Feb-1992 Eric of Arabia
3-7 23-Feb-1992 Scotch on the Rocks
3-8 01-Mar-1992 Loveknots
3-9 08-Mar-1992 Smoke Your Nose
3-10 15-Mar-1992 Kids
3-11 22-Mar-1992 Members Only
3-12 29-Mar-1992 Highland Fling (1)
3-13 05-Apr-1992 Highland Fling (2)
Special S-1 26-Dec-1992 The Prague Sun
4-1 10-Jan-1993 The Napoleonic Commode
4-2 17-Jan-1993 The Ring
4-3 24-Jan-1993 Second Fiddle
4-4 31-Jan-1993 The Colour of Mary
4-5 07-Feb-1993 Fly the Flag
4-6 14-Feb-1993 Judgment of Solomon
4-7 21-Feb-1993 The Galloping Major
4-8 28-Feb-1993 God Helps Those
4-9 07-Mar-1993 They Call Me Midas
4-10 14-Mar-1993 Irish Stew
4-11 28-Mar-1993 Dainty Dish
4-12 04-Apr-1993 Taking the Pledge
4-13 11-Apr-1993 Lovejoy Loses It
5-1 05-Sep-1993 Pig in a Poke
5-2 12-Sep-1993 Who is the Fairest of Them All?
5-3 19-Sep-1993 A Going Concern
5-4 26-Sep-1993 The Kakiemon Tiger
5-5 03-Oct-1993 Three Men and a Brittle Lady
5-6 10-Oct-1993 Ducking and Diving
5-7 17-Oct-1993 Stones of Destiny
5-8 24-Oct-1993 Poetic Licence
5-9 31-Oct-1993 The Peking Gun
5-10 07-Nov-1993 Goose Bumps
5-11 14-Nov-1993 Swings and Roundabouts
5-12 21-Nov-1993 Never Judge a Book By Its Cover
5-13 28-Nov-1993 The Price of Fish
Special S-2 27-Dec-1993 The Lost Colony
6-1 02-Oct-1994 Fair Exchange
6-2 09-Oct-1994 Day of Reckoning
6-3 16-Oct-1994 Somewhere Over the Rainbow
6-4 23-Oct-1994 Double Edged Sword
6-5 30-Oct-1994 Guns and Roses
6-6 06-Nov-1994 The Last of the Uzkoks
6-7 13-Nov-1994 Breaking the Broker
6-8 20-Nov-1994 Fruit of the Dessert
6-9 27-Nov-1994 Holding the Baby
6-10 04-Dec-1994 Last Tango in Lavenham"
Wonderful series, lackluster DVDs
Brent Butler | North Carolina | 05/19/2010
(4 out of 5 stars)
"My wife and I originally became fans of this series back in the late 80s when it was imported by A&E, and always made sure to catch it or tape it. For many in the USA, this was their introduction to the delightful actor Ian McShane. We make sure to catch Ian in other shows and movies because of our appreciation for his work as Lovejoy, but truthfully we never like him as well in other roles ... the sometimes fate for an actor who makes a role his own over a long period of time. (Can anyone watch a current Tom Selleck role without comparing it to Magnum? Unlikely).
Lovejoy is a roguish and seldom successful antiques dealer in England who has a special quality to 'sense' if an antique is real or fake. This virtually psychic ability is played up more in the books than it is in the TV series, although it does makes appearances from time to time in the shows. The TV series is also considerably sanitized over the content of the books, which have a lot more sex, mayhem, and out and out criminality on the part of Lovejoy himself ... although he always MEANS well. LOL
One major advantage of the TV series over the books is that you can always understand the endings. Gash from time to time dives into endings in his books in a very abrupt and chaotic fashion, and even though you somehow get the impression that everything worked out in the end, occasionally you're not certain of the mechanics of how it happened. And no, I'm not hopeless at reading comprehension, in fact I'm quite good at it. I'd say about one in four of the books have this problem.
As has been mentioned by other reviewers, the extras on the Lovejoy series DVDs are on the sketchy side. However, I don't really buy movie or TV show DVDs for the extras, I buy them to watch the movie or the TV show, so this isn't a great concern to me. If there are any interviews at all with actors or other interesting contributors, I consider it a plus, not a necessity of the format.
You aren't going to find a striking presentation of video or audio here, but what you'll see is almost certainly the equal (or better) of the original broadcast presentation, so no real harm is done. As a videophile, I would like to see flawless remasters in every product, but we just don't get that with some older TV shows and movies.
To my knowledge, Lovejoy hasn't been broadcast anywhere in the states since the early 90s, so if you are a fan wanting to revisit your pleasures of those days, or a potential new fan intrigued by the possibilities of the series, you'll have to buy them to watch them."
Lovejoy's a Love
W. H. Byrnes Jr. | Morris County, NJ USA | 05/11/2010
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Any fan of this series is going to appreciate the collection. Great for viewing anytime, but particularly apt on rainy days -makes you feel like you're in the shire along with Eric, Tink, and Lovejoy himself. Easy to navigate menus and good picture quality."