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wookie

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The Panther and the Firebird
The Panther and the Firebird
Price: £1.00

4.0 out of 5 stars An unexpected gem, 23 Feb 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
So I'll admit I bought this book a while ago mainly because I like the cover! I actually got around to reading it recently though and it really lived up to it's promise - I was sucked into the story from the first page and the plot rattles along at a fair pace right to the end, a well rounded and varied cast of characters, and all set in a convincing depiction of early 20th C Europe. A great read you'll zip through in no time.


Star Trek :- Voyager, Enterprise, Deep space nine, The next generation & the original series. The CHOSEN COLLECTION a total of 192 DVD's in 5 separate boxsets.
Star Trek :- Voyager, Enterprise, Deep space nine, The next generation & the original series. The CHOSEN COLLECTION a total of 192 DVD's in 5 separate boxsets.

69 of 69 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Pirate Set on Amazon?, 30 April 2009
I'm surprised to see what is a known Chinese pirate set listed on Amazon. Avoid.


Roots
Roots
Price: £4.99

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Roots, 31 Jan 2009
This review is from: Roots (Audio CD)
I've been in a lot of moshpits - a lot - but little can compare to that moment when the opening chords of Roots Bloody Roots kick off. A modern classic. Truly epic.


Star Trek The Next Generation: The Complete Seasons 1-7 [DVD]
Star Trek The Next Generation: The Complete Seasons 1-7 [DVD]
Dvd ~ Star Trek the Next Generation

65 of 67 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Best consider this a 'budget' set thanks to it's low quality, poorly considered packaging., 17 May 2008
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I'm going to assume those who are interested in this set are familiar with the series itself and will already have an opinion about it, my concern in this review is for the packaging - put simply it's a cheap and lazy effort.

I can only conclude those who've defended the packaging in previous comments started out with pretty low expectations, but if I'm forking out over £100 for a box set I expect a little bit of effort to have gone into the design. When you consider the production cost of the entire boxed set is probably negligible (I'd be surprised if it's much more that £10, all in) and that the production costs of the series itself have been recouped many times over, it's hard to see the combination of high price and low effort as anything other than naked profiteering by Paramount. For what is being pitched as a '20th Anniversary Collector's Set' it is, quite frankly, taking the mickey.

So, what do you get for your money...

- The DVDs are 'presented' in three sets of double-sided trays joined by way of an adhesive strip down one edge to form a sort of book. The plastic is coloured a shade of green that is far more lurid than the photo suggests, almost neon, only adding to the slightly tacky feel. There are three 'books' in total holding the seven series in sequence (but undifferentiated by anything other than the DVD graphics). The trays themselves are an 'off-the-shelf' mass-produced design and the only customisation made for the set is the poor choice of colour, they feel cheap and the centre DVD grip/release looks like the type that will likely break easily - short of sticking them on a spindle I don't think you could spend less on packaging a set of DVDs. The individual 'books' don't even have front and back 'covers' - the first has a cover of a sort, a blank tray that holds what passes for a booklet (more on that later) but the remaining two are uncomfortable and clumsy to handle and feel ill-considered.

- The DVDs themselves appear to be identical in content to those in the slimline boxed sets available for each individual series, the title screens and menus are the same and it appears that the episode distribution matches. So all Paramount seems to have done for this 'Anniversary set' is print different graphics on the DVD face and chuck in an extra DVD of 'special features' (I won't comment on this as I've not watched it yet, so far all the actual video content is fine). The DVD print graphics themselves all follow an identical basic design with each season differentiated by featuring a different character's face, the season name and a disk number. Each disk is also printed with the names of the episodes it contains. This is the only means by which you can find a particular episode

- All of this is held in a cheap metallic silver plastic tray (you can get a fair impression of this from the photo) which is covered in a flimsy thin plastic cover. This is simply a printed plastic sheet that has been folded and glued in a manner usually reserved for disposable packaging - there is nothing 'premium' about this at all.

- The 'booklet' is just an insult and consists of a single side printed poster that has been folded (un-printed side out) to fit within the tray of the first 'book' of DVDs. The graphic design is terrible, I'd expect better of an unqualified amateur; awful '20th Anniversary' logo motif, poorly considered layout, dull typography, choice of cheap paper -I could go on... The content is pretty pointless too, consisting of a single paragraph of copy for each series summarising the episodes and a few bits of trivia - the sort of thing a professional copywriter could sling together in an hour or so. Completely useless and utterly forgettable. The one thing that would be useful - a breakdown of episodes by series and an index method of some sort to find the appropriate disk in the set - is not included, although you do get a big graphic showing you other Paramount product you can buy, and a completely incongruous and ugly 'plaque' listing assorted production luminaries.

In use the set is frustrating for doing anything other than watching everything in sequence or picking an episode at random. If you're a fan of the series and want to watch a particular episode all you have to go on is the episode titles printed on the DVDs themselves - which means taking the entire set out and flicking through the trays until you find an episode name that jogs your memory, you'll then need to play the DVD to see if you got it right. Useless. How hard would it be to provide a decent booklet with a single line episode summary (as you get with the slimline boxed sets) and a simple reference to help you quickly find the right DVD? How hard would it be to split the 'books' of DVDs into individual series rather than just shove them into three so you don't know which 'book' to thumb through to find even a particular series, let alone episode? (Season 3 starts in 'book' one, ends in 'book' two, for example) - it's seems evident that no-one at Paramount has considered anything beyond 'how cheaply can we repackage what we already have and shove them together so they look pretty and we can maximise our profit' - either they're that cynical or they're just incompetent.

So, in summary, it's not unusual to find food packaging that has a higher production values, and the menu you'll get from your local takeaway has probably had more spent on it than the 'booklet' that you get. For the sort of profit Paramount will be making from this set it would have been inconsequential to produce something far superior and worthy of the Star Trek label.

Still, it does remain the cheapest legitimate way to get the entire Star Trek TNG series on DVD and if you consider it a 'budget' set you're expectations will probably be more realistic. If you expect anything special from what is billed as a celebration of the '20th Anniversary' of the franchise though you'll likely be sorely disappointed.

Disgraceful.
Comment Comments (3) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Apr 10, 2010 3:14 PM BST


Revelation Space (GOLLANCZ S.F.)
Revelation Space (GOLLANCZ S.F.)
by Alastair Reynolds
Edition: Paperback

11 of 20 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars interesting ideas but poorly written, 18 Jun 2007
Perhaps I'd been spoiled by reading China Mieville and Iain M Banks before this, but I found the dialogue and character development to be very poor, the plot chronology confusingly explained (especially initially) and the general atmosphere and scene descriptions to be dull and uninspired. After a few hundred pages I was still waiting to be grabbed by the story but persevered, in fact it was probably a good 2/3 of the way through before I actually started to care about any of the characters, and then only in the most passing sense and it was only really a curiosity of where all this meandering was going that kept me reading. It's not that it's a bad tale and there are some nice ideas in there, but it's really poorly written and lacking in any warmth. Overall, pretty disappointing. I picked this up on the cheap along with the more recent 'Century Rain' - I'll give that a bash to see if the author has improved over time, but my hopes are not high.


The Amalgamut
The Amalgamut
Price: £15.53

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Filter with filler..., 16 Aug 2002
This review is from: The Amalgamut (Audio CD)
Filter have a habit of producing a handful of good catchy tracks and then filling out the rest of the album with songs that don't really measure up. This album is no exception - there are some really rocking tunes but they share the cd with other tracks which just sound 'samey'. Not a bad album, but could be better with a little more effort.


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