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20 of 20 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars I have in despair turned to the purchase of this product.
Now, please from my rather morbid title do not read that I have, or have ever had, any objection to the television series 'Not The Nine O'Clock News.' I believe it to be a fantastic work of comedy and believe that infant children should be bound by national curriculum to watch it from an early age- the introduction of such a policy would undoubtedly eliminate the growing...
Published on 8 Aug 2011 by Petunia Poppleworth

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21 of 25 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Nice comedy, shame about the DVD
I've long been a fan of Not the Nine O'clock News, even though I recognise that it's pretty dated and I'm sure I'm too young to get half the references.
This DVD does contain many of the fantastic sketches - I was disappointed by the absence of one or two things but I think there is a vol 2 so I'll have to wait and see if they are included on it. As for the sketches...
Published on 28 Dec 2004 by Ally


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20 of 20 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars I have in despair turned to the purchase of this product., 8 Aug 2011
This review is from: The Best of Not the 9 O'Clock News - Volume 1 [DVD] [1979] (DVD)
Now, please from my rather morbid title do not read that I have, or have ever had, any objection to the television series 'Not The Nine O'Clock News.' I believe it to be a fantastic work of comedy and believe that infant children should be bound by national curriculum to watch it from an early age- the introduction of such a policy would undoubtedly eliminate the growing problem of seemingly humourless individuals. The rather sorrowful outlook reflected in my title is infact derieved from my finally accepting that perhaps I shall never, in my lifetime, wake-up to find the 'Not The Nine O'Clock News Complete Box Set' alongside my other comedy favourites.

I finally resolved that I must, at least for the present, purchase this DVD and its twin (Not The Nine O'Clock News - The Best of Not The Nine O'Clock News - Vol. 2 [DVD] [1979]) instead. My first thought upon having completed both discs was that there were several sketchs I should very much have liked to see that were not to be found on either disc. I recall at this point, however, that once a very wise man said "Quality over Quantity," and certainly one is very aptly provided for in the former, if not the latter.

Some might say that the comedy has aged badly and is no longer what once it was. I would wholeheartedly dispute such sayings. I believe the comedy to be, with one or two exceptions, extremely funny and, in its own special way, relevant. Even the sketches and clips that are political, or otherwise directly linked to a period or event, stand up alone as amusing. I believe I have sound authority to say so having been unborn both during, and for a considerable time after, the initial broadcast of the show, therefore having no direct links with the time 'Not The Nine O'Clock News' chronicled.

Perhaps the largest downside, and the only reason I have doubts in meriting the product the much coveted five star rating, is the amount of effort put into the presentation. The menu system put in place is pointless, one has no means of telling when a sketch will be coming up, and there is no direct way of accessing a particular sketch. I, on one of my more boring days, typed up the entire catalogue of sketches on each disc, creating my own written menu. The DVD is a direct VHS transfer and this is acutely evident whilst watching as it plays much like a video tape. It is a shame the makers of this product do not deem 'Not The Nine O'Clock News' worthy of even the slightest bit of additional effort. It was, and remains, a magnificent show and deserves a spectacular tribute.

Overall, I have no regret or remorse connected with the purchase of this item. I have had hours of fun watching it and I am sure I shall have hours more! I heartily recommend it, I honestly do.

Thank you.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Vintage, timeless comedy, 20 Jan 2005
This review is from: The Best of Not the 9 O'Clock News - Volume 1 [DVD] [1979] (DVD)
I disagree strongly with any assertion that the 'Not the Nine O'Clock News' sketches are dated. They have, if anything, improved with time, and if you are new to the programme, or wish to revisit the series, this DVD is a great place to start. It contains such classics as the darts sketch (which had such an impact at the time it temporarily ruined the reputation of the sport), the racist policeman, and Rowan Atkinson's brilliant turn as a Conservative politician addressing the Tory conference. It is a reminder of what classic sketch comedy is all about, and what Richard Curtis was capable of in his early career (though he was admittedly only one of a vast number of writers - who included members of the public).
It's a shame there are no extra features - I remember watching a very good documentary about the impact of the programme a few years back, and wonder why it isn't included. However, this is still well worth buying - and better than volume two.
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26 of 28 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Comedy - Though Unfortunately Featureless, 12 Sep 2003
This review is from: The Best of Not the 9 O'Clock News - Volume 1 [DVD] [1979] (DVD)
Although this comedy was made in the late 1970s/early 80s the writing remains fresh, the satire sharp, and the show itself hilarious. Obviously the picture and sound quality are not quite as crystal clear as recent releases, but the driving forces of inspired writing and fantastic performances (especially a youthful Rowan Atkinson)carry it along.
A minus-point is that the only special features are chapter selection (although there are only 6 chapters, and at least twenty sketches) - especially given its £15 RRP.
However, classic sketches such as 'Super Duper', 'Are You A Gay Christian?', and that one at the dinner table where everyone starts plugging products to the wall, whilst Atkinson looks on aghast (I don't know its actual name) are still hilarious and anybody that hasn't seen them are missing out.
This is obviously from the Thatcher period of British politics, however the core satire and political values remain fresh, sharp and hysterically funny - although perhaps the figureheads that it mocks have changed.
Despite it being a vanilla release, this is one of the best British comedies ever, and its stars Rowan Atkinson, Griff Rhys-Jones, Mel Smith and Pamela Stephenson have, for the most part, gone on to international fame. Sublime.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Hilarious and clever, 6 Feb 2011
By 
DavyA (Newcastle Upon Tyne, UK) - See all my reviews
(TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
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This review is from: The Best of Not the 9 O'Clock News - Volume 1 [DVD] [1979] (DVD)
My goodness, it 's been a long time since I watched these first time around.Browsing through some clips on the internet persuaded me to purchase both Volume 1 and Volume 2 and I have been laughing like the proverbial drain ever since.
The DVD packaging is pretty basic and the lack of extras may leave some feeling as little short changed but at the bargain price it didn't bother me at all.
Some of the comedy is "of its time" but coincidentally ,given the current tendency for politics to repeat itself, seems very current (the address at the Tory party conference which Rowan Atkinson executes to perfection, being a case in point).
A brilliant skit of Question Time, the classic Gorilla sketch ("wild ? I was absolutely livid")and tons more.
Some of the musical interludes are more hit and miss but on the whole are pretty entertaing.
Be, in no doubt, these are an absolute must. This really was for me, where real alternative comedy shows started. A comedy classic - but I guess if you watched it at the time, you'll know that anyway.
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31 of 34 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Praise the Lord, the Beeb are back in town, 7 July 2004
By 
J. Hammond "Big John" (Oxford, UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Best of Not the 9 O'Clock News - Volume 1 [DVD] [1979] (DVD)
Firstly, Not The Nine O'Clock news deserves a 10 star rating IMHO, as one of the best comedy shows of the last 30 years.
But this DVD release is a pretty poor effort from the BBC.
This DVD is a DVD release of the 1995 NTNOCN video "The Gorilla Kinda Lingers" The only feature apart from the quality comedy from the NTNOCN team, is a "scene selection" which allows you to skip forward in chunks, however it only allows a certain selection of the material. Very disapointed to see no other footage available! It is well worth buying to replace VHS or if you dont have the video releases, but little to justify paying full price for it, apart from the main episodes themselves!
Not The Nine O Clock news deserves a better tribute than this!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Oh shut up about your bloody evening classes Gerald..., 30 Jan 2009
By 
L. Davidson (Belfast, N.Ireland) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Best of Not the 9 O'Clock News - Volume 1 [DVD] [1979] (DVD)
"Not the Nine O'Clock News" was comedy at it's best; intelligent, topical and hilarious showcasing the many talents of Rowan Atkinson,Mel Smith,Griff Rhys Jones and Pamela Stephenson. Watching this DVD was a great bit of nostalgia, reliving all the classic songs and sketches that I remember from my youth."Gob on You", "Bouncing", "I Believe" were the best of the songs ,while "Gerald The Gorilla", "Question Time", "Constable Savage" and "Game for a Laugh" were the best of the sketches. Great stuff.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars It's Not The 9 O'Clock News!, 30 Mar 2004
By 
N. Jones "neiljones1981" (West Midlands) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Best of Not the 9 O'Clock News - Volume 1 [DVD] [1979] (DVD)
The marvellous comedy that is Not The 9 O'Clock News is now on DVD. Given the state of society as it is today, quite a lot of this material is now destined to live in the archives.
The show launched the careers of many people who have since gone on to do marvellous extra work. It's a shame that the show only lasted three years but then you'd never get away with this sort of stuff today.
The famous Gerald the Gorilla sketch is on here, as well as other delights such as the Tory Speech sketch, the "we are a Python worshipping country!" discussion and of course, who can forget the "the one course of action the authorities must take is to cut off their goolies" sketch discussing how to curb soccer hooliganism :) One other very amusing highlight is the "seven toilets" sketch ("Let's stick a toilet in the shower shall we, kill two birds with one stone as it were") :D Plenty of material to laugh at here, it's kind of ironic really that Atkinson is dressed up here in various roles that he would later go on to do for real, such as being in charge of a police force in one sketch. 16yrs later and we have The Thin Blue Line.
Chapter selection is pretty bland and doesn't seem to bear any relation to the individual episodes so feels pretty random. No special or extra features but there is an extra "bonus" at the end of the disk after the Super-Duper melody. I shan't say what it is - you can buy the DVD for that. :-)
4 stars then for this, one point deducted for the chapter selection thing which really could have been better executed and the chapters marked in a better way so far as the cut-off points are concerned. But a minor niggle really. :)
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good entertainment, 10 Nov 2011
This review is from: The Best of Not the 9 O'Clock News - Volume 1 [DVD] [1979] (DVD)
I was a little reluctant to buy this DVD, but today they are still as funny as 30 years ago.
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21 of 25 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Nice comedy, shame about the DVD, 28 Dec 2004
This review is from: The Best of Not the 9 O'Clock News - Volume 1 [DVD] [1979] (DVD)
I've long been a fan of Not the Nine O'clock News, even though I recognise that it's pretty dated and I'm sure I'm too young to get half the references.
This DVD does contain many of the fantastic sketches - I was disappointed by the absence of one or two things but I think there is a vol 2 so I'll have to wait and see if they are included on it. As for the sketches which are present, although the poor film quality and a lot of the references are dated, the comedy truly lives on, and anyone viewing even for the first time cannot fail to find humour in Gerald the Gorilla or Question Time, among many other gems.
There were a few sketches which did fail to amuse me for their entire duration - the very first sketch about darts players really does drag on too long. But the DVD is definitely worth getting for the rest of the comedy.
So why did I only give it three stars? Because such a fantastic show deserves a much better release than this. I could easily believe that the whole thing was produced in a rush. Despite the fact that many more sketches could have been included, and perhaps even outtakes or interviews, there are no special features or extra material whatsoever. I would have really enjoyed a few things that weren't included when the series was aired. Even the scene selection is appalling - it just skips through random sections of the DVD, so when settling down to watch it, it is sometimes necessary to just sit and watch the whole damn thing from start to finish to make sure you don't miss anything. Not a problem for me, because I enjoy it too much, but anyone suffering it without being a fan is not going to like the fact that they cannot select specific scenes.
It certainly could have been done a lot better, and there must be some great material from this show that was sadly excluded. However, to anyone who did enjoy the programme in its day, I would definitely recommend this DVD because - who could live without this comedy? Well done Not the Nine O'clock News, not so well done BBC.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Material is great, features poor, 14 Dec 2003
By A Customer
This review is from: The Best of Not the 9 O'Clock News - Volume 1 [DVD] [1979] (DVD)
I can still laugh to tears in some bits. It's strange seeing Maggie back on screen, makes you feel a bit old.
As someone else pointed out, chapter selection is extremely basic, a real nuisance when you just want to show someone that particular bit about Gerald the Gorilla. That's the reason I knocked off a whole point.
I was livid when I discovered that open-heart surgery was not scheduled on this DVD, as it was my prime buying motive and a perusal of several websites had led me to believe I would find it here. This is a serious issue because my old tape is lost. BBC, please make volume 2 NOW and include open-heart surgery.
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