The WHOLE THING in ONE SET!!! About time, too!
"Waiting for God" became a favourite from the moment I first saw an episode. (It was "The Spiritualist" from Season Four.) A friend sat me down and told me, "You WILL watch this." I met Tom, Diana, Harvey, Jane, Geoffrey, and Marian.
Don't let the title put you off, it has nothing to do with religion or dying and everything to do with life and living. The series is set in the Bayview Retirement Community in Bournemouth, England. The place is run by Harvey "The Idiot" Baines, with the help of his side-kick Jane Edwards. When a new inmate - er, resident - Tom Ballard checks in, he moves in next to Diana Trent. Tom is a widower with one son (according to Diana, he's thick as a plank) and a daughter-in-law ("and she's something out of the Twilight Zone," also according to Diana). Tom was an accountant for 40 years, and when he becomes bored he tends to let his mind wander into his own imaginary world, populated by B-Movies and their plots. Diana, on the other hand, is a spinster - proud of it - who was a prize-winning wartime photojournalist. Together, Tom & Diana keep things at Bayview stirred up, so much so that Harvey spends the entire five year run of the show trying to chuck them both out. (The show never made it to the US, but if it had my idea of "Dream Casting" would have been Harvey Korman & Bea Arthur. Acid wit meets silliness.)
Graham Crowden and Stephanie Cole are superb as the troublesome twosome. (Ironically, Ms. Cole had to be aged for the part, which she took on when she was about 50 years old.) Daniel Hill plays Baines, and Janine Duvitski plays Jane. Jane is smitten with Harvey, and Harvey thinks his ideal woman sits on tractors in bikinis. Once in a while Jane decides it's hopeless and tries to become a nun. Harvey, who is totally inept, can't run the place without her. Geoffrey
The writing is sharp and well-paced. The show tackles many problems of aging (prostate problems, adult-onset diabetes, loneliness, the scams perpetrated on aging, and others) with taste and laughs. THE SERIES IS A WHOLE STORY WITH A BEGINNING, A MIDDLE, AND AN END. Start at the beginning and keep going until the end. Prepare for laughing out loud. Several episodes may cause soreness to ribs from doing so: the trip to Brighton in season one, the scandal in season three, and the last four episodes of season five. The set includes the two Christmas specials, and hopefully some extra features.
It took YEARS for this wonderful series to appear on DVD. Fans eagerly bought up each season, fearing it would be the last released. NOW comes the full series all in one go! If you count the number of discs in the individual seasons, you come up with SEVEN. The count on this set says EIGHT, and the cover artwork actually says NINE. So, we may be faced with a dilemma: keep buying the individual seasons or go for it and get the whole set. Your choice. If you haven't gotten the seasons as they were released, go for this set.
The point is, everyone should visit Bayview. Once won't be enough!