Top critical review
221 people found this helpful
5+ stars for the series, but still an inferior dvd quality
on 21 October 2005
It is pretty exasperating to find that while so many TV-productions inferior to this one (and most are) reach us on DVD in mint condition, it is apparently impossible to do the same favour to this, one of the three best things ever made for television (the other two being the 1995 BBC Pride and Prejudice, and ABC's Angels in America). It took ridiculously long for Brideshead to appear on DVD at all. When it did, it was crammed onto three discs in an otherwise featureless set. Image and sound were appalling throughout. So what a relief to find there is now a 'collectors edition' on 4 discs, presumably to correct the initial errors. But don't get your hopes up too high. On this reissue the sound is as bad as on the old version; listen to the opening tune - whatever happened to CD quality sound? The picture quality has improved somewhat: less grain, some gain in clarity. Yet, unbelievably, this reissue again shows up tape artefacts, unsteady backgrounds, and occasional fuzzy images.The main improvement is in the presentation: there now are several interesting extra's, and even a booklet! But that, of course, is not what it is all about. Worst of all every disc begins with a noisy, non-skippable anti-piracy add that is an insult to buyers of this set, and is so infuriatingly irritating that it would turn you into a movie pirate on the spot. Unfortunately there is little choice but to make do with this, as any serious lover of great television will not want to be without this monumentally impressive series. Of the available options (including the Region 1 'collector's edition' - what's in a name...), this one is the best, though that is not saying much.