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Upstairs Downstairs - The Complete Series [DVD] [1971]

Rachel Gurney , Jean Marsh , Raymond Menmuir , Derek Bennett    Suitable for 12 years and over   DVD
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (152 customer reviews)
Price: 29.25 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Frequently Bought Together

Upstairs Downstairs - The Complete Series [DVD] [1971] + Upstairs Downstairs - Series 2 [DVD]
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Product details

  • Actors: Rachel Gurney, Jean Marsh, Lesley-Anne Down, Simon Williams, Angela Baddeley
  • Directors: Raymond Menmuir, Derek Bennett, Bill Bain
  • Format: PAL
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 4:3 - 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 17
  • Classification: 12
  • Studio: Network
  • DVD Release Date: 31 Jan 2011
  • Run Time: 3400 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (152 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 6,993 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)



Given a much-loved television hit of yesteryear a revamp, the BBC’s new take on Upstairs Downstairs has proven to be both a ratings and critical success. And with good reason, too.

Set in 1936, Upstairs Downstairs follows the antics in the sumptuous home of the Hallam family. Set against a backdrop of the path to World War II, the programme then explores the differing lines of the rich family upstairs, and the servants who work below. And this provides a platform for all sorts of scandal and secrets, which keep the drama bubbling along nicely.

The new cast clearly have a ball with the material. Among the residents in this new version of show are Keeley Hawes, Anne Reid and Claire Foy. Plus there’s the added bonus of the return of the wonderful Jean Marsh, one of the brains and stars behind the original run.

The shift in time from the original Upstairs Downstairs, meanwhile, is of great benefit to this show, and it moves it along from being a straight remake. Instead, the new Upstairs Downstairs more than holds it own, and while it’s inevitably in a head-to-head fight with ITV’s Downton Abbey, there’s more than enough here to ensure the show is worthwhile in its own right. More, please. --Jon Foster

Product Description

The entire collection of long-running 70s costume drama based on the lives of the masters and servants of 165 Eaton Place. Set at around the turn of the century, the landmark TV serial chronicled the lives of the gentry in one English home, contrasted against those of their servants below stairs.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
224 of 227 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars THE WHOLE COMPLETE SERIES (Without the Extras) 8 Oct 2012
I think reading these reviews, a lot of people are getting a bit confused with what this DVD contains. The original Complete Series is the one shown in the Green Box which was the first set to be realeased of the complete whole series, containing 21 discs and includes all the added extras. (interviews, making of the series etc)

This particular version of the Complete Series (second release) is exactly the same as the Green Box (21 disc set) except that it only has 17 discs which still cover all the 68 episodes that were made, just as the Green Box Set does. What you don't get are the extra discs, which have all the extra material on them. (hence only 17 discs instead of 21) The Green Box Set currently costs 70 and this second version of the Complete Series currently costs 39.95. So you are saving 30 on this Complete Series Boxed Set. If you want all the extras as well, then buy the Green Box Set. I have purchased this particular set, because all I want to watch is the whole series from start to finish, without the added extras. Everyone to their own choice. Hope this has clarified what to expect if buying this particular version.
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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Great Show, Problematic Transfers... 5 April 2012
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
After watching the entirety of the Acorn (US) set and episode one of the Network (UK) set it is clear that neither of these box sets are perfect. The Acorn doesn't have the act breaks but it does have subtitles for the hard of hearing and a much better picture. In fact, the Network transfer of the videotaped sections of "On Trial" look, as is the case on so many British DVD transfers from the era, as though they have have been transferred onto film. On the plus side the Network set does have the LWT logos and the act breaks. As I always take picture quality over logos and act breaks I will take the Acorn anyday. Acorn, at least kind of does justice to Upstairs Downstairs, one of the finest English language TV shows ever. Wouldn't it be nice if DVD companies did justice to their customers once in a while?
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95 of 100 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Immensely Enjoyable! 30 Dec 2010
I am very much enjoying the new incarnation of 'Upstairs Downstairs.' currently being broadcast on the BBC. I am so glad they chose not to attempt a remake of the original, but instead, to move the new series along in time, to an equally fascinating period in European history, that of the lead-up to WWII. I am sure there will be some interesting developments within the new family, as there were in the original series. This series is beautifully done in true BBC period drama style, with a host of instantaneously believable actors and actresses. The new 'Upstars Downstairs' allows us to explore the ideas and manners of a time gone by, but not to be forgotten. At a time when good TV is getting scarse, and trash TV seems to be the norm, this is a breath of fresh air.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Careful with the volume. 22 Feb 2012
Now that we have mastered the art of keeping the volume turned down during the appearance of the London Weekend Television logo at the start of each episode (the sound behind the logo is startlingly loud !), we are thoroughly enjoying watching this DVD.
Unfortunately there are no subtitles for us hard of hearing folks (yes the LWT logo sound is REALLY loud !! ) but then you can't have everything.
All in all an enjoyable experience.
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26 of 28 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars upstairs downstairs complete series 1971 21 Mar 2011
Superb TV series but alas NO subtitles for the HOH . The American release for this series on Acorn does have subtitles for all the episodes and has just been released .
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64 of 70 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Viewing 28 Dec 2010
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
To be honest I was only a wee nipper when Upstairs Downstairs was originally on tv, and so I only have a vague memory of it. I didn't know if I would like this, especially as I couldn't stomach the Channel 4 series recently set in a stately home. This was originally an idea by Jean Marsh who discussed it with Eileen Atkins, and from there it all started.

165, Eaton Place is being re-opened with a new family taking over, and they need staff. With Jean Marsh acting as an owner of an employment agency she is approached by the new owners. Set in 1936 this mini-series shows so well what was going on at the time in England as well as the problems also going on in the household. Taking in such things as the Black Shirts, and the abdication of the King, you also have the problems with staff, and the new owners not necessarily knowing all the rules of etiquette.

With inspired writing by Heidi Thomas and great acting, especially from Ellie Kendrick, this is something that will give you pleasure, and one can only hope that there will be another series. My only gripe with this is that it was too short and so the story had to be sped along to a large degree.

Also on this dvd is a thirty five minutes 'behind the scenes' look, taking in the writing and the set, along with comments from some of the actors.
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40 of 44 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Certainly a landmark in TV history! 2 July 2008
This is season one, which includes the five black and white episodes that are 'interspersed' with the colour ones. This was because filming had been interrupted by the infamous Strike which had resulted in the said episodes not being done in colour. As a consequence, they have become much sought after and rarely seen. They were only ever aired the once by ITV - their original showing, despite any subsequent re-runs of the series there may have been. As Jean Marsh (Rose) once told me; these black and white episodes were among some of the best that were ever done! They will also help to fill in gaps for those who never saw them, and as to what happened during those missing years: 1903 - 1907, and also will reveal the destiny of some of the characters that appeared to 'vanish' for no apparent reason; some of whom later returned, and others who were never seen again...

This first season is what certainly resulted in 'Upstairs, Downstairs' taking off in the way that it did, and becoming such a massive success. It was an immediate 'hit' with the viewers, and the closing episode which left the son of the household involved in a scandalous affair with one of the housemaids, and the daughter, his sister, marrying a homosexual poet, was certainly guaranteed to bring viewers back for the second season!

This set also included two award-winning episodes in: 'I Dies From Love' and 'Why Is Her Door Locked', which involved the suicide of the Irish Kitchen Maid. Ironically, this first set would also include what was to become the 'weakest' and least understood episode: 'The Swedish Tiger'!

Highlights from this Season are marked with an * below.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars quite good. pity they stopped the series
quite good. pity they stopped the series.
Published 1 day ago by G. Ashall
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Highly Entertaining.
Published 3 days ago by MICHAEL LOWSLEY-WILLIAMS
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
First impressions very good, but haven't viewed all the episodes yet.
Published 10 days ago by Rooksie
5.0 out of 5 stars Great
I watched this, but perhaps missing some episodes, when I was younger but to see it again is fantastic. You cannot get better than this drama. If you want quality buy it.
Published 1 month ago by Grahame
2.0 out of 5 stars upstairs downstairs
Not as good as the later series and black and white which spoils it very disappointed as just wasnt up to expectations
Published 3 months ago by norma thomas
1.0 out of 5 stars Fault in early episodes
Found some of the early episodes were in black and white was this a faulty DVD.Please reply to this now
Published 3 months ago by MR M T MCSORLEY
1.0 out of 5 stars Poor quality
It looks as though parts of these DVDs have been converted from deteriorated VHS tapes, and was a bit confused to have the first episode in colour followed by three in black and... Read more
Published 3 months ago by Kali
5.0 out of 5 stars utter brilliance
Writing, acting, storylines all still stand up as well today as the day this was filmed, Choice of cast members was excellent, each believable and easy to empathise with. Read more
Published 4 months ago by louise
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful study of the complexity of human relations.
The fact that all the characters are of different ages, different income brackets and from different walks of life makes it all the more interesting. Read more
Published 4 months ago by Ms. C. Wetwood
2.0 out of 5 stars Poor Quality
I was really looking forward to this series and thought understandably that it had been re worked for DVD. Read more
Published 4 months ago by Mrs. Karen Martin
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