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14 Reviews
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73 of 74 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Welcome DVD Release for Cribb, 12 Sept. 2004
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This review is from: Cribb [1980] [DVD] (DVD)
Cribb was one of the quirkiest and most imaginative detective series that British television has ever managed to produce. Concerning the investigations of a Detective Sergeant (excellently played by Alan Dobie), it managed to conjure up the seediness and atmosphere of Victorian London, soon after the formation of the C.I.D. There are many fascinating plotlines here, centred around activities such as bare knuckle prize fighting and long distance indoor walking competitions ("wobbles"). The class ridden attitudes of the time are in full view as well...there's no Jack Regan sledgehammer insubordination here, and Cribb has to be on his toes to catch the criminals and stay on the right side of his superiors. The budget obviously affected the production values at times but the stories are so gripping and the array of talent so rich that this can only be regarded as a minor flaw. It's up there with "Raffles" when it comes to period detective drama and only loses a star because the pilot episode, "Waxwork", is irritatingly absent. A few decent extras would've been nice (an interview or two for instance) but alas not too many of these T.V releases score too well in that department.If you like a decent mystery, presented with plenty of atmosphere and flair, then I recommend you give this one a try.
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24 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Witty, colourful, all round entertainment., 27 Mar. 2007
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Prof TBun (Birmingham UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Cribb [1980] [DVD] (DVD)
In book form I prefer Sherlock to Cribb. But this is most definitely the best TV detective series I have ever seen.

I have to disagree with the previous reviewer, in that Sergeant Cribb is neither stylish nor dour. Cribb elevates sarcasm to a high art form throughout, and bullies his companion Constable Thackary mercilessly.

The series itself is stylish however. The lavish sets and costumes and well crafted music are a joy. All the plots, writing and performances are first rate.

It is undoubtably an expensive purchase, but I recommend that you at least put it in your wish list or considerer a second hand copy.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very Enjoyable!, 22 Mar. 2008
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S. Johnson "sijon" (uk) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Cribb [1980] [DVD] (DVD)
I managed to see some of the original runs of the series on TV when it was first screened in 1979/1980 and even though I was young, I was quite into it thanks to the great acting talents of Alan Dobie playing a very witty humourous role along side William Simons. The visuals for the Victorian period were excellent captivating all the atmosphere of that time. Yes, not very action packed compared with todays equivalent police series dramas but however, this is a very enjoyable series and you'll want to watch a few episodes at a time; there's something in it like the Jeremy Brett Sherlock Holmes series which gets you hooked in. I would justify the current listed price especially if this is what you are after.
I would highly recommend this trip down memory lane.
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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Arresting stuff!, 11 Aug. 2008
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Friendlycard (Norfolk, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Cribb [1980] [DVD] (DVD)
I approached this DVD set cautiously, for three reasons. First, I am a great admirer of Peter Lovesey's books and have sometimes, in the past, been disappointed by screen reproductions of favourite books. Second, I read the Victorian period for my doctorate, so am attuned to historical inaccuracies. Third, I had heard that this was a comparatively low budget production.

Never fear - the series far exceeded my expectations, and can be recommended strongly. The series is remarkably true to the books, not least because Alan Dobie is spot on as Sergeant Cribb, whilst William Simons is equally well cast as Thackeray. The adaptations capture the clever plotting and the wry humour of the original books.

Peter Lovesey began his writing career with 'Wobble to Death', a remarkably original novel set against a bizarre but authentic sporting background, and went on to write seven more books featuring Sergeant Cribb. Of these, 'Swing Swing Together' is my personal favourite, whilst the last book in the series, 'Waxwork', won particular critical acclaim.

Before filming the series, 'Waxwork' was produced as a pilot - the main shortcoming of this box set is that this programme is missing. For the series proper, this left a canon of seven books for adaptation, to which Granada added a further six stories specially written by Peter and Jacqueline Lovesey.

My favourite episodes here are 'Swing Swing Together' and 'Wobble to Death'. In the former, Cribb and Thackeray seek 'three men in a boat' in the very summer when Jerome K Jerome's newly-published classic was being emulated en masse along the Thames. The result is an engagingly charming story, beautifully portrayed here.

'Wobble to Death', too, is a highpoint, helped by a typically excellent performance by Michael Elphick. I also particularly enjoyed 'Mad Hatter's Holiday', set against a realistic background of summer holidays in Victorian Brighton. Of the stories specially written for the series, most are very good.

This is not the most lavish or technically-advanced detective series you'll ever see but, courtesy of great scripts, solid production and some excellent performances from Alan Dobie, William Simons and others, it's quality entertainment. Great stuff. (Apologies for the pun in the headline!)
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Period Comedy Drama to be savoured, 25 Sept. 2007
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C. JONES "CJ" (Swansea, UK) - See all my reviews
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My affection for this wonderful old series is no doubt coloured by the fact that I met Alan Dobie as a student in the mid 80's and had quite a few drinks with him (consequently my memories are a bit blurred!)
But I digress - if you crave a gentler pace, good stories and period charm, this is for you. Dobie's performance is very contained, and there is a dry wit and a pleasant chemistry between Cribb, Jowett and Thackeray that makes the series very watchable. Like meeting up with an old friend after many years.
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21 of 25 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A VICTORIAN DETECTIVE WITH STYLE., 25 July 2006
By 
NEO "Daren" (orpington kent) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Cribb [1980] [DVD] (DVD)
I did not catch the original airing of this series back in the early 1980's. And I have only seen some of the run on ITV3 , however this is a brilliant series starring Alan Dobie as the dour northern Detective sargeant Cribb. This series though only 13 episodes long which is a great shame though not full of action. Is very watchable and seems to stick to the victorian era just as much as Sherlock Holmes. And it is that fact that gives this otherwise standard format an edge. Of the Dvd the picture quality is poor and the sound isn't that good. There are no special features to mention pluss the pilot episode is missing. And at a cost of £45 it's also very expensive for so few episodes which will put many buyers off.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars good old fashioned drama, 15 Aug. 2010
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Jayne Eyre, England (Tyne and Wear, England) - See all my reviews
this is what good drama series were all about, I love it. Hadnt watched it for years and just by chance i was up my brothers and the show came on. We were in stitches at "hand that rocks that the cradle" and the words used to describe items we take for granted today i.e. perambulator! It was so well acted and the sets and costumes were superb as were the actors. Pity they dont make em like this any more. Im glad i was around the first time when the series was made and have wonderful memories of that time.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Detectives, 15 Jan. 2010
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Mr. J. W. Thompson (UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Cribb [1980] [DVD] (DVD)
Wonderful set of DVDs I was delighted to find these recordings once again available. A Great series for anyone who like period dective stories. Well acted and entertaining. The period settings and social attitudes of the day are recreated perfectly.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Cribb, 15 Aug. 2011
This review is from: Cribb - Vol. 2 - Something Old, Something New [1980] [DVD] (DVD)
This is a refreshing series about Victorian society as much as crime. Cribb is consistantly under valued by his superior and mercilessly harries Thackery, but it's charming, well acted and very entertaining.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Victorian Melodrama but with humour, 14 Feb. 2014
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This review is from: Cribb - Vol. 2 - Something Old, Something New [1980] [DVD] (DVD)
This was very good. I enjoyed watching the original series on Television years ago, and enjoyed DVDs. The sound quality shows its age a bit. But that didn't bother me.
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Cribb - Vol. 2 - Something Old, Something New [1980] [DVD]
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