CAREFUL-- YOU MAY HAVE THIS SET ALREADY. IF NOT, GET IT.
Ian Macoy | Bluemont, VA | 10/30/1999
(5 out of 5 stars)
"For some reason, A&E has released the first series of Jeeves & Wooster under different episode names. The original first series was available from PBS branded as Mobil Masterpiece Theatre, which is how this wonderful series first ran in the States.I made the mistake of purchasing the first set offered by A&E thinking these were episodes I did not already have. Don't you do the same if you already have the original set from PBS."
Wonderfully funny, british comedy at its best
bijucu | freeville, ny United States | 04/03/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"The quality of the sound is much better than in the VHS version I've seen (Dolby digital 2.0 on DVD). However there aren't any special features except scene selection.The titles of the episodes listed are the following: "Jeeves takes charge", "Tuppy and the terrier", "The purity of the turf", "The hunger strike" and "Brinkley Manor".The 5 episodes of this set appeared previously (VHS) under different titles: "Jeeves' Arrival", "Golf Tournament", "The Gambling Event", "Hunger Strike" and "The Matchmaker".Two memorable characters are introduced: the ever-amiable, charming and foppish gentleman of the '30s, Bertie Wooster, and his stately, cultured and dignified valet, Jeeves. Bertie (and his helpless friends) finds himself in trouble all the time, and only the priceless Jeeves can extricate him and make things run smoothly again, until the next imbroglio comes up.Their creator is P. G. Wodehouse (1881-1975). If you already met him, then no more talk is necessary. If he hasn't crossed your path yet, you're even luckier; you will be able to discover his sunny world starting afresh.Bertie Wooster is played by Hugh Laurie and Jeeves by Stephen Fry. They are simply brilliant and I laughed myself into stitches watching the series. Usually TV adaptations are disappointing, but in this case, none of the original flavor is lost! Plot lines are not followed exactly sometimes and separate novels and short stories are combined together in one episode to make the whole thing livelier, but the final result is, somehow, exactly right."
...more on the confusing titles
Ian Macoy | 12/04/1999
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Great videos, these. And thanks to Ian for the tip regarding duplicate tapes. After further research I believe I can clear up the issue. I think "The Very First..." and "The Collector's Set" contain the same episodes, despite the fact they sport different titles (see Ian's review below). Both of these sets were released in 1991. The upshot: there are essentially 3 J&W box sets: the two mentioned above which are really the same; the "More J&W" box set; and the "A Tad More J&W" box set. Happy hunting!"
No sex, no violence, hilarious! Who'd have thought it?
M. Painter | Pennsylvania, USA | 06/12/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I have heard of the Wodehouse stories, on which this series was based, but have never read them. Wodehouse fanatics (and there are a lot of them) seem to embrace the show with enthusiasm. I'm writing to tell you that you don't have to know the canon to love the TV version.Stephen Fry (Jeeves) and Hugh Laurie (Wooster) are well-known English comedians. They both had major roles in the Blackadder series and Laurie starred in Stuart Little. Here, Laurie plays Bertie Wooster, an air-headed young English aristocrat, a character exactly like his Blackadder roles, and Fry plays Jeeves, Bertie's valet, a man of sophistication and cunning, equally at home in the sitting room of a county manor or in a rowdy East End mission. A character completely unlike any Fry played in Blackadder.The series is set in the 1930's, and is rich with period atmosphere. Poor addled Bertie may be rich, debauched and carefree, but he forever seems to be getting into social trouble with either his aunts or his eccentric school chums. The punch line every time is that, after Bertie has made such a pig's breakfast of things that you can't imagine he'll ever be invited to anyone's mansion for dinner again, Jeeves comes up with a simple and elegant resolution. Along the way, we are treated to crisp, witty dialog, in the best British tradition. I particularly enjoyed Jeeves's reaction to the mess jacket he finds in Bertie's clothes closet:"I assumed it had gotten into your wardrobe by accident...or else been placed there by your enemies."Bertie protests. "I wore this jacket at Cannes, Jeeves, and all the young ladies tried to catch my eye.""No doubt they mistook you for a waiter, sir."The striking thing about this series (unlike, say, Blackadder) is that it will keep you laughing without the slightest sexual innuendo or a smidgeon of violence (unless you count Bertie's golf game). You could show this whole series at a Sunday School picnic and no one would blush.How many comedies can you say *that* about?"
The best of British comedy
E. A Solinas | MD USA | 12/28/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)
"It's only fitting that one of the best British comedy series out there is adapted from some of the funniest novels ever written. Hugh Laurie and Stephen Fry expertly fill in the ditzy aristocrat Bertie Wooster and his stoic ultra-brain manservant Jeeves. Hilarious writing, great casting, insanely complicated storylines that make "Seinfeld" look like a walk in the part."Jeeves Takes Charge" when Bertram Wilberforce Wooster advertises for a new valet (the old one kept stealing his socks). As Bertie becomes accustomed to Jeeves, he is also being sent to the country to (theoretically) woo Honoria Glossop, a woman so hearty and athletic that she slaps Bertie right off his feet. To make things more complicated, one of Bertie's pals is in love with Honoria, and Bertie's two crazy cousins are stealing stuff."Tuppy and the Terrier" includes Bertie planning to propose to the mischievous Bobbie Wickham, a move that rapidly gets him into hot water (specifically, a hot water bottle punctured by a needle) -- but not as much hot water as he'll be in when Aunt Agatha finds out that Bobbie gave away her beloved dog. Meanwhile, Bertie's pal Tuppy Glossop has fallen in love with a snooty opera singer and dumped Bertie's cousin..."The Purity of the Turf" is soiled when Bertie's uncle falls in love with a waittress. Aunt Agatha's orders that Bertie bribe the girl away work -- and don't work -- and the resulting threat of imminent death sends Bertie and Jeeves into the countryside. There they start up a gambling syndicate at a fete where betting of all kinds is off-limits."Brinkley Manor"'s "Hunger Strike" goes horribly wrong when Bertie's cousin Angela breaks up with Tuppy, and newt-obsessed Gussie Fink-Nottle falls in love with the soppy Madeleine Basset (she believes the stars are God's daisy chain -- how about that?). Bertie offers advice to the lovelorn young men, only to have Madeleine assume that he is in love with her, and Tuppy assumes that he is in love with Angela. Anatole the cook also quits. And Jeeves is Bertie's last hope. before Madeleine marries him and Aunt Dahlia murders him.P.G. Wodehouse's novels spoof the idle rich, and you may come out of it thankful that these people had too much time on their hands. Timid young men, carnivorous aunts, a guy obsessed with newts, another guy who falls in love with every girl he comes across, a stuffed moose, uncles in the throes of midlife crises, incredibly smart butlers, and young women who accept a marriage proposal that was never made -- if anything here strikes you as funny, this will be perfect. Hugh Laurie is perfect as the gangly, amiable Bertie Wooster (who's too accomodating for his own good) and Stephen Fry is quietly, dryly humorous as the opinionated valet Jeeves.Though this season suffers from a few awkward spots that are polished out later in the series, this show is outrageously funny and definitely worth buying!"