Attention shoppers! Your favorite dysfunctional sales staff is back with more mischief, more hilarity and more hair colors! Join Mr. Humphries, Mrs. Slocombe, Miss Brahms, Captain Peacock, Mr. Lucas and the rest of the gan... more »g as they make shopping at Grace Brothers the comic experience of a lifetime. The staff has been hard-at-work polishing and pressing all 35 classic episodes from series 6-10 of this beloved BBC comedy series, most of them never before available on video. Also included is a bonus disc containing interviews, television specials and other goodies featuring the Are You Being Served? cast.DVD Features:
Other:Trailers, Episode Summaries
TV Special:"The Best of Are You Being Served?" - Mr. Humphries and his mum look back at Grace Brothers? funniest moments. "Celebrating Mollie Sugden: An Are You Being Served? Special" - A brand new special featuring the Are You Being Served? cast celebrating the life and career of Mollie Sugden. "Are You Being Served? Again! (aka, Grace and Favour)" - Episode One - The Are You Being Served? cast leaves the department store behind and heads for Young Mr. Grace's country hotel.« less
If you purchase only one set, make sure its Series 1-5
J P Falcon | Fords, New Jersey United States | 07/02/2003
(3 out of 5 stars)
"I gave 5 stars in my quick review of the first AYBS? set which cover Series 1-5. In reviewing this set, I have to be honest and reduce the rating to a 3. Mind you, a 3 star rating is not bad, but in comparison to the first set, they are a different as night and day and cannot be view as equals.With few exceptions (MASH, GUNSMOKE) the longer a series remains on the air, the greater the chance that the show will become a parody of itself. This is what happens to AYBS? Coupled with some changes in cast, the show lost it's edge and some of the qualities which made the first 5 seasons so memorable and endearing.First the cast changes: 1)Harold Bennett who played Young Mr. Grace was replaced by Kenneth Waller who plays Old Mr. Grace. While Bennett was charming and delightful as the elderly man who had an eye for the young ladies, Waller takes it to the extreme and does not possess the grace and wit that Bennett had. He wasn't even part of the final seasons and it was no lose. Waller was only a poor parody of Bennett.2)Arthur Brough who played the lovable grouch Mr. Grainger left the show after his wife had died. Several non descript characters were used to replace him such as Mr. Klein, Mr. Tebbs and Mr. Grossman, but it was only until Alfie Bass came aboard as Mr. Goldberg that some juice was restored in the role. Unfortunately his arrival marked the next major departure from the cast.3)Trevor Bannister left the role of Mr. Lucas at the start of the 1981 season. Whether he left the show because he was actually tired of doing it, or because he had a commitment to do a stage show is not important. What is important is that his lose is felt, as some of the spark and energy that he provided was never regained. He was replaced by Mike Berry as Mr. Spooner. Berry was not in the same league with Bannister. Where Bannister managed to tweak and insult Mrs. Slocombe with impish boyish charm, Berry just comes across as nasty. His jokes at Mrs. Slocombe's expensive are crude and there are even moments when you can hear the audience murmer their dissapproval. Of all the cast changes, this is the one which seriously impacted on the overall quality of the show.So why am I even bothering giving it 3 stars if I'm so negative?Well, fortunately the show still has the quartet of Slocombe-Humphries-Brahms-Peacock to carry on. Throw in Mr. Rumbold as well while we are at it. They manage to overcome the weak and rehashed story lines that prevailed in the final few seasons.There are also many very good episodes spiced throughout this set, such as:1-Do You Take This Man?...this is the Greek Wedding episode and it's hilarious...Mr. Tebbs one moment to shine.2-The Junior...Mr. Golberg's arrival...the interview scene with prospective employees is funny.3-The Apartment....Mrs Slocombe moves into an empty floor at Grace Brothers while squatters are removed from here flat. Some great fun here.4-Strong Stuff This Insurance...when the men are butt naked behind a screen awaiting their physicals, Mr. Lucas hides himself with his hands. When he looks down to check out Capt. Peacock and compares, he removes his hands, and with a broad smile, stands proud...a classic funny bit that you would never see on 1979 US television.5-Anything You Can Do..always fun when they take the group out of their element...this time they try to run the canteen6-The Punch and Judy Affair...Trevor Bannister's swan song...take note how Bannister tries to get Inman to crack up and flub his lines...you can see Inman with his back to cam trying to surpress the laughter...fun stuff.7-Is it Catching?...the gang must cope with a giant water bed while being quaranteened...It's Molly Sugden's turn to keep from laughing out of character.8-Goodbye Mrs. Slocombe...Molly Sugden shines as she takes on odd jobs at Grace Bros. when her position become redundant.These are the highlights..these are other good episodes but also some bad ones as well...the consistency that marked the first 5 seasons is no longer there. So should you buy this set? If you already purchased Series 1-5 then by all means, complete your collection. But for anyone who is new to this series, under no circumstances should you purchase this set as your first introduction to the show. Seek out the first set 1-5, then continue on if you so desire.Recommended with some reservations..."
"Weak as water, the whole lot of you. Weak as water!"
Matthew Gladney | Champaign-Urbana, IL USA | 07/17/2003
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Set in old-fashioned Grace Brothers Department Store, "Are You Being Served?" was a long running comedy series which followed the day to day antics of the Mens and Ladies Wear departments, both on the same floor. It was, in its own way, a microcosm of society (albeit a slightly off society). We had: Mrs. Slocombe - the eccentric head of Ladies' Wear, who always had a different hair color each episode. Mr. Humphries was the effeminate Menswear assistant who was the source of much hilarity. There was the young and attractive Ms. Brahms. Then there's Mr. Rumbold - the large-eared department head, Captain Peack - always after the ladies, and Mr. Harmond - the intrusive, brash janitor. Put together, these characters make a recipe for an all-together great comedy series.This DVD set covers the last 5 series (or 'seasons') of "Are You Being Served?" and, viewed on its own, is quite funny. If the episodes are compared to the ones from the first 5 years, it becomes apparent that the quality of the scripts have deteriorated somewhat. Concepts from earlier years are re-used, new characters are introduced and don't quite fit-in, and the show takes on a somewhat 'auto-pilot' feel. But don't think that this is a bad set of shows. Even though they are not as good as the episodes in the Series 1-5 set, they still make for some of the best television I've ever seen.Gone from the cast are Mr. Grainger (head of Menswear), and Mr. Lucas (he appears in the first two series of the set, and then takes his leave). Grainger & Lucas were two very big parts of the heart & soul of "Are You Being Served?", and their absences are pronounced. There was a series of 'older gentlemen' replacements for Mr. Grainger, before the producers decided to jettison the idea of the role altogether. Mr. Lucas's replacement, Mr. Spooner, lacked quite a bit of personality, and paled in comparison to his predecessor. We also witness the departure of Young Mr. Grace, the owner of the store, who was one of my favorite characters.Despite the number of cast changes during the last five years of its run, "Are You Being Served?" still managed to be one extremely funny show. Two of my favorite episodes fall within this collection. In "The Apartment", Mrs. Slocombe has squatters in her new flat, so Grace Brothers allows her to use one of the department floors to live in temporarily. She has the place set-up just like a real home and, due to a transit strike, her co-workers end up having to stay the night there. The results are quite amusing. In "The Hold Up", the staff are performing their yearly late-night inventory when two burglars break-in. Some of the staff are captured, and some of the staff dress-up as The Gumby Gang - notoriously tough criminals. This may be my favorite "Are You Being Served?" episode -- ever."Are You Being Served?" ran for twelve years in Britain, and, coincidentally enough, it ran for twelve consecutive years on my local PBS station - a sign of its great humor, fabulous characters, and enduring charm. The first DVD set was great. I can't wait to own this one."
This set is jolly good and "I am unanimous in this"
mwreview | Northern California, USA | 10/16/2003
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Those, like myself, whose quest was to see every episode of AYBS? on PBS only to have a time change, slot change, or telethon get in the way, will be relieved to finally have all 69 episodes of this hilarious series in two convenient box sets to watch anytime (take that, PBS). Yes, in this second box set Mr. Grainger is replaced by a string of, mostly unmemorable, characters, and Mr. Lucas will eventually be replaced by the more mean-spirited and less tactful Mr. Spooner; however, there are still many excellent episodes in the last half of the series, including some personal favorites. In "Grounds for Divorce" it seems almost every female member of Grace Brothers is enamored with Captain Peacock. "The Erotic Dreams of Mrs. Slocomb" are about you know who. "The Hero" with Capt. Peacock developing a boil on his bum is another of my favorites. It also includes Trevor Bannister's last episode "The Punch and Judy Affair" which, although I find to be boring and repetitive, is a fan favorite."The Best of..." extra was disappointing. I thought John Inman would provide commentary to AYBS? clips. Actually, it is just a bunch of random clips (some quite long) that any fan of AYBS? has seen many times before. The piece on Molly Sugden looked as if it was going to be the same clip show but, fortunately, ends up with more interviews with actors and a look at Sugden's life in her own words which makes for a very welcomed extra. Grace and Favour was a cute series and I hope that the other episodes will be released on DVD soon. Yes, if you are only going to buy one set, buy the first but, if you're going to own the first, why not the second as well?"
The rest of AYBS? comes to DVD!
Matthew Gladney | 06/18/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"...this second and last "Are You Being Served?" DVD boxset will contain a 'bonus' disc (like the first boxset) with the following special features:"The Best of Are You Being Served?": Mr. Humphries looks back at Grace Brothers' funniest moments. (*Note: This is already available on VHS.*)"Celebrating Mollie Sugden: An 'Are You Being Served?' Special". A brand new special featuring the 'Are You Being Served?' cast celebrating the life and career of Mollie Sugden."Are You Being Served? Again! (aka, 'Grace and Favour')": Episode One - Join the 'Are You Being Served?' cast as they leave the department store behind and head for Young Mr. Grace's country hotel. Plus "Who's Who", episode synopses, trivia, trailers and more!The second bonus feature ("Celebrating Mollie Sugden") sounds particularly interesting and intriguing... I wonder what it can be? I can't wait to find out! The inclusion of the first episode of the 1992/93 spin-off series, "Grace and Favour" (that's "Are You Being Served? Again!" to you Americans) is a great idea, because that series has still NEVER been repeated in Britain and I would love to see it again! (Sure, it wasn't as good as the 'real' "Are You Being Served?", but I remember it was very funny, nonetheless. Hopefully all 12 episodes of it will be released on DVD in due course....)"
Mr. Humphries! Leave my pussy [cat] alone!
Matthew Gladney | 10/02/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This is an execllent set of dvds that complete the Are You Being Served? Series.
It includes "Roots?" an episode I've never seen on PBS - It's Mr. Grace's 90th Birthday and the staff decide to research Mr. Grace's roots and do a song/dance number to honor him. After doing three song and dance routines they dig up some more info about Mr. Grace's roots....The cast do a Minstral show number dressed in black face- in questionable taste? You'll have to decide for yourself. But it's obvious that's why this episode has not aired on my local PBS station. The high point of the episode is that the both young and old Mr. Grace are together in this episode AND we see Mr. Rumbold's twin brother!.
Also included is the first episode of Are You Being Served Again?
ALSO - Inside the case for disc 14 is a special separate preview disc of my all time favorite Britcom - "Allo, Allo" - It's the pilot episode of that series..with the promise that series 1 of that show is coming to DVD in Jan '04. Don't miss this one!"