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Ripping Yarns - The Box Set [DVD] [1976]

Michael Palin , Charles McKeown , Terry Hughes    Suitable for 15 years and over   DVD
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)

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Product details

  • Actors: Michael Palin, Charles McKeown, David Griffin, Michael Stainton, Peter Graham
  • Directors: Terry Hughes
  • Format: Box set, PAL
  • Region: All Regions
  • Aspect Ratio: 4:3 - 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 2
  • Classification: 15
  • Studio: Revelation
  • DVD Release Date: 24 Oct 2002
  • Run Time: 180 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00005LDFS
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 75,243 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)


From Amazon.co.uk

After Monty Python's Flying Circus (1969-74), and well before going Around the World in 80 Days (1989), Pole to Pole (1992) or even Full Circle (1997), Michael Palin starred in Ripping Yarns, co-written with Terry Jones. As the title suggests, these were spoofs, affectionate pastiche-come-homage Boy's Own-type adventures. Each was an individual short film, less bizarre than the Flying Circus, not so consistently hilarious as fellow ex-Python John Cleese's Fawlty Towers, but inventively surreal with a daffy, gloriously English eccentricity. "Tomkinson's Schooldays" was the 45-minute pilot (originally shown as a one-off programme in 1976) and the funniest of the three tales here. A parody of Tom Brown's Schooldays, the humour comes from the violence, cruelty and insane rules of Graybridge public school in which the unfortunate Tomkinson is incarcerated. Ian Ogilvy is a fine School Bully, terrifying even Terry Jones' useless headmaster. "Escape from Stalag Luft 112B" is a P.O.W. movie send-up (from the first series), and "Golden Gordon" (from Series 2) celebrates the man who won't give-up on an underdog northern football team. In 1983 Palin made The Missionary, essentially a feature-film Ripping Yarn. --Gary S. Dalkin

Product Description

Six episodes of Michael Palin's Seventies comedy series. 'Tomkinson's Schooldays' is a tale of stiff upper lips in the face of schoolroom bullying, while 'Escape from Stalag Luft 112B' spoofs every prison camp movie ever made. 'Golden Gordon' features the trials of a footballing fanatic desperate to revive the fortunes of his local team. 'The Testing of Eric Olthwaite' is a tale of depression in the North of England, set in the days before 'Last of the Summer Wine' brought prosperity to the area. 'Whinfrey's Last Case' features dashing Gerald Whinfrey's daring attempt to prevent World War One. While 'The Curse of the Claw' is a gothic horror story set in Maidenhead!

Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
4.6 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
51 of 51 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
Contains the two DVDs "Ripping Yarns" and "More Ripping Yarns", with the first six scathing parodies of boys' adventure stories, staring with 'Tompkinson's Schooldays'. The series exhibits a superlative dry wit throughout. However, the set is NOT complete: it does not contain the third disk "Even More Ripping Yarns", with the final three yarns, including two of the best (in my opinion): 'Roger of the Raj' and 'Across The Andes By Frog'.
Interestingly, most catalogs now show the third disk as being unavailable or withdrawn. Curious.
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29 of 29 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars NOT the first 6 episodes 12 Jan 2004
By A Customer
The Amazon synopsis describes this as the full set, which is not true - there were 9 episodes made in total. Many of the reviews above add to the confusion. Thanks to the reviewer above who mentions the 3rd DVD "Even more Ripping Yarns", which contains the 'missing' three episodes. I just want to clarify that the 'first six' refers to the first 6 released on DVD, NOT the first 6 made by Palin & co (this confused the hell out of me for a while). The 2-DVD box set in fact contains a mix from series 1 & 2. According to the BBC web site, series 2 was: Whinfrey's Last Case, Golden Gorden & Roger of the Raj. The other 6 episodes were series 1 (including Tomkinson's Schooldays, the pilot episode). Hope somebody finds this useful! As for the content - well, they were all classics, weren't they??
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Not Good Enough 9 Oct 2004
Nice to see the final three episodes being released at long last. But where does that leave us who bought the boxed set assuming it was the full run? Not good enough! Another example of exploitation of the consumer. Pity because they are a true example of classic comedy.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Michael Palin at his best!! 24 Dec 2000
By A Customer
Format:VHS Tape
Python member Michael Palin really uncovered himself as the comic genius he is in "Ripping Yarns". The scripting is sublime, not a line is wasted, and Palin proves an astounding versatility as an actor. Starting with his satire of the old public school system, moving on to the "old boy" army system and officer class, and culminating with his particular vision of football fandom, the sadly little known "Ripping Yarns" should be a great discovery for Python enthusiasts.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beating the Headmaster was never like this! 14 Nov 2000
Brilliant! For all of you woho enjoy wonderfully silly satires on the English Public School system, the World War Two Escape story, and the North Yorkshire Football Supporter yarn.
'Ripping Yarns' was commissioned after the success of what was supposed to be a one-off, 'Tomkinson's Schooldays'. My 13-year-old son, who has never known corporal punishment at school, didn't get some of the jokes. He enjoyed 'Escape from Stalag Luft' more.
It's a great shame that no-one seems to do these affectionate spoofs any more.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars ripping yarns 17 Jan 2011
Michael Palin and Terry Jones created this series after the success of Monty Python.
However although there are obvious connections to Monty Python this is a series in its own right.
What we get are a series of comic plays. Each has its own story and each is a send up of the "boys own adventure" style of books from the Victorian and Edwardian era. Each story soaked in a sort of British Empire boy's hero character.
It's a glorious parody of schoolboy literature.
There are stories of intrepid explorers, wartime heroes, sporting heroes, and supernatural figures. There is a strong north of England, working class slant to the stories.
If you love Monty Python then you will love these stories too. I am not a big fan of Monty Python and did not find this series incredibly funny either but this does have some very funny moments and the stories and light hearted atmosphere are very entertaining and over all I prefer this to Monty Python.
This DVD set is actually two series collected together. The whole series is a worthy release and is worth seeing.
It is all very tongue in cheek.
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24 of 30 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Anorak Facts 14 May 2004
By A Customer
According to my battered copy of the The Complete Ripping Yarns (Mandarin 1980), the nine "classic yarns which set British television back 60 years" are;
Tomkinson's Schooldays (7/1/76)
The Testing of Eric Olthwaite (27/9/77)
Escape from Stalag Luft 112B (4/10/77)
Murder at Moorstones Manor (11/10/77)
Across the Andes By Frog (18/10/77)
The Curse Of The Claw (25/10/77)
Whinfrey's Last Case (10/10/79)
Golden Gordon (17/10/79)
Roger of the Raj (24/10/79)
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars film Ripping Yarns
Very funny films in true Python-style humour.
A bit pricey for three short episodes, but that could be due to scarcity value of a 1976-produced item.
Published on 5 Oct 2010 by jd
4.0 out of 5 stars A Five Star DVD?
First a confession; I haven't yet bought the DVD as I'm waiting for it to (hopefully) come back into stock. However I know the content well. Read more
Published on 17 Nov 2003 by J. Punter
5.0 out of 5 stars ripping yarns box set
you will not be disapointed with this set it has got most of the best episodes(tomkinsons schooldays and the curse of the claw) ok so there are no extras on the dvds but who cares... Read more
Published on 4 May 2003 by Mr. G. M. Prince
4.0 out of 5 stars Classic British Comedy But DVD Package Falls Short
This set contains the the first six episodes of Ripping yarns -

* The Testing Of Eric Olthwaite
* Tomkinson's Schooldays
* Escape From Stalag Luft 112B
*... Read more
Published on 18 Nov 2002 by Shrewlord
5.0 out of 5 stars 'Come On Barnstoneworth' !!!!
'Golden Gordon' is one of the funniest things i have ever seen.For any football fan of a lesser known team, perhaps in decline,then this is the bees knees. Read more
Published on 18 Aug 2002 by B.D.Parker
5.0 out of 5 stars A Near Forgotten Classic
I remember watching Ripping Yarns when it came out while I was a slip of a lad at school. It was by "the Monty Python guys" so it had to be funny. Read more
Published on 9 Oct 2001 by P. Harris
5.0 out of 5 stars am i getting old
i can barely remember watching these when i was a kid,,,but im glad i did,,i didnt appreciate them as much as i do now though,i recommend this to anyone who has thought... Read more
Published on 3 Aug 2001
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