83 of 84 people found the following review helpful
on 23 April 2007
This brilliant series has been far too long coming to DVD. I cannot understand why the BBC should have dragged its feet the way it has. But now it's here, and what a joy it is to see again! It is social satire at its most perceptive while at the same time being immensely entertaining. It is set in the 1920s. Upstairs is Lord Meldrum and his family, its fortunes based upon the rubber products it makes, including... yes, you've guessed it. Downstairs are the servants - and even here there is class division, with poor Mabel the skivvy looked down upon by the others and excluded from any perks that might be on offer, while the scrounging local bobby is welcome to everything. The range of characters is wide, the situations varied, and the series develops as a fully integrated story from first to last as the fortunes of the family gradually decline. There's so much to watch, and at more than one level, that each episode can be enjoyed over and over.
Do buy it. You won't be disappointed.
23 of 23 people found the following review helpful
on 9 January 2008
After a delay of some fifteen years it is marvellous now to have this series available on dvd in a quality of vision and sound that was not possible on its first showing in the early 1990s. Although Jimmy Perry and David Croft have created an amazing series of programmes over the past twenty five years or more, including the almost legendary 'Dad's Army', they reached a peak of writing and production in these programmes which, in its breadth of detail, it would be difficult to match let alone surpass. The cast realise their conception to perfection, and their acting shows a rare distinction in its combination of farce, comedy and seriousness - (yes, also seriousness, because this comedy drama deals as well with serious issues within a light-hearted context.) The period settings and costumes recreate the late 1920s to perfection, and, it almost goes without saying, the production values are of the highest standard. An essential set for anyone interested not only in television comedy, but anyone interested in consummate comedy-drama. To be seen again and again with the greatest enjoyment; it is indeed a masterpiece.
54 of 55 people found the following review helpful
You Rang M'Lord? was a written by Jimmy Perry and David Croft, the creators of Dad's Army, It Ain't Half Hot Mum and Hi-de-Hi! 26 episodes were broadcast between 1988 and 1992. By then it had become a favorite with the British public, but without having achieved the popularity of other Croft sitcoms, such as Hi-de-Hi!, Dad's Army, 'Allo 'Allo! and Are You Being Served? However, this could be because it has rarely been repeated due to the length of the episodes (50 minutes) which does not suit current broadcast slots (30 minutes).
You Rang M' Lord? is a comedy set in the house of an aristocractic family (Lord Meldrum) in the 1920s, contrasting the upper-class family and their servants in a house in London, along the same lines as the popular drama Upstairs, Downstairs.
Su Pollard in her role as the he well meaning, but rather naive maid is the star of the show the whole cast works together perfectly The triple treat of Paul Shane, Jeffry Holland and Su Pollard are value for money as always, but everyone was cast so well and that even the minors roles are a dream for any Actor to play. The post-Victorian aristocratic setting is perfect for class distinction humor, its underlying political themes subtle enough to serve the humor only. This series reveals that all "classes" of people are driven by basic human nature, the same foibles, desires, hopes, and dreams. The situations are hilarious and tied to an overall theme in each episode.
16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
on 7 February 2008
Really think this is one of the best British comedies ever made
Somehow the writers and actors always avoided to stoop to the lowest common denominator, typical for many popular comedies
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
on 17 July 2010
I'd never seen this program on TV so I was surprised that I enjoyed it so much. Yes, some of the script and shenanigans are silly, but it sets a point of contrast for the serious issues that were a part of the class culture in those days: how a parent's transgression can deny his/her innocent adult children a decent life, how the disregard of the socialite set can cause the most honest and moral servant to consider steps he/she considers abhorrent, and how little control women had over their own lives, the least of which were the less-educated servant girls vulnerable to sexual harassment and a hostile work environment!
The actors and the script have grown on me. I agree with a previous reviewer that if people can hold on during Season Two, the show picks up again after that. I'm glad I took the leap and trusted others' reviews. I find myself watching it more than I thought I would, and I'm sure I will for years to come.
25 of 26 people found the following review helpful
on 27 March 2008
This is one of the best comedies I have seen, it is so very funny and very witty, I love the way the servant's all sit around the table drinking afternoon tea and eating Mrs Lipton's cherry cake, and poor Mabel looks on as usual with her mouth watering, you really do feel for the characters in the roles that they play. The cast are brilliant Paul Shane, Jeffery Holland, Sue Pollard and not forgetting the honourable Teddy (Michael Knowles) who loves chasing the servant girls... the humour just goes on... and on... even in a serious moment. I do agree with some of the other reviews that this great comedy wasn't realised sooner, in my view this comedy written by Jim Perry and David Croft deserves higher recognition, thank goodness the dvds came out a true masterpiece that I highly recommend.
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on 22 February 2009
First class comedy from that great duo Perry & Croft, who also wrote 'Dad's Army' & 'Hi-de-Hi' etc. ( why weren't such talented hero's of comedy Knighted for enhancing our lives?). As with all Perry & Croft comedies there are many good characters in this series with good lines for all and the emphasis is yet again on the eccentric nature of the British & our perceptions of 'class'. So, if you like this style of easy and 'polite' comedy you'll find the whole box set brilliant and repeatable humour for all the family, plus it's great value for money!
You Rang, M'Lord? - The Complete Boxset Series One - Four [DVD]
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on 5 December 2013
I bought the box set without ever having seen one episode and I have been delighted. This is a comic version of upstairs downstairs life where human eccentricities are exploited to the full and the English class system of yesteryear ( still evident today) shown to be more than an aristocratic vice. The episodes are fifty minuets long which I find just right and the plots complicated enough to allow multiple viewing. The characters,above stairs run the gamut of types to be found on the fringes of silly society even today, but perhaps the most notable are Teddy Meldrum, brother of Lord Meldrum the master of the house, a sort of Bertie Wooster who compromises the servant girls and has a fetish for carbolic soap, and Miss Sissy, a gay character with little real power who very much occupies the moral high ground with her concern for the poor. One miscalculation has to be Miss Poppy a very nasty and manipulative creature ( Lord Meldrum's immature and spiteful younger daughter ) I personaly could see no reason for including her. Superfluous, she has obvious behavioural issues and has as a consequence been spoilt. She is neither funny nor interesting and her appearances are a good excuse to make the tea. Below stairs the snobbery continues and a clear demarcation is made between the live in staff and the scullery maid who is not allowed to sit at table with 'her betters'. I think if some of these characterizations were not comic they would be revolting particularly Alf Stokes ( Paul Shane ) a liar and a cheat, who has falsified his way into the position of Butler. The star of below stars has to be Ivy the Parlour Maid, played by Sue Pollard. Right at the bottom of the pile Ivy's simple nature echos the concerns and fundamental goodness of Miss Sissy above stairs.
Many times as I watched these plays I found myself thinking of contemporaries in the world of celebrity and politics today. The vacuous life they lead and the selfish values they espouse, money, cheap night clubs, cars and rampant dishonesty chief amongst them. The close parallel to the world of politics is worrying, particularly the dishonesty of Alf Stokes the Butler. Nothing changes but it was also interesting to reflect that the most virtuous characters are a gay woman and a rather gentle parlour maid. Perhaps this says it all and maybe an old quote might be apposite ' all power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely'. Good value for money and a wonderful comment upon human nature.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on 2 June 2009
It is perhaps the 'poor relation' in terms of media profile rated next to Perry and Croft's other hit series (Dad's Army, It Ain't Half Hot Mum, Hi-de-Hi!) but there is little question that it is their greatest achievement. The setting is sumptuous, recreating quite lavishly the 1927 period setting. The characters are all superbly drawn as you might expect from the two masters. Paul Shane makes a wonderful slightly sinister butler in Alf Stokes, always ready to think the worst of his employers. Su Pollard loses all the over the top clowning that she gave Hi-de-Hi and instead proves what a remarkable actress she is with some lovely layered performances as Ivy. Perhaps the stand out performance in all the show though is Jeffrey Holland as the pompous, self righteous footman James Twelvetrees. He is the solid core off which a lot of the downstairs staff bounce their comic vollys. Special mention must be made of Barbara New's char lady Mabel who is perhaps the finest underdog that Perry and Croft ever created, played to the hilt by Barbara. The upstairs lot are a pretty unsympathetic bunch save for Catherine Rabett's socially aware Cissy Meldrum. Donald Hewlett and Michael Knowles turn in their TV personas but this time the vehicle suits them better than any other allowing them to shine in areas that Hot Mum and the short lived Come Back Mrs. Noah didn't.
Just 26 episodes were produced over a five year period at the BBC and each one is a gem. I wholeheartedly recommend the full boxed set as there is a definate progression through the series of both story and character development. The state of television these days means we will never see something with the production values of You Rang, M'Lord ? produced again in the name of situation comedy. Savour every brilliant moment. (The book THE HI-DE-HI COMPANION also covers the making of You Rang and features some lovely behind the scenes photos. Worth a look.)
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on 23 March 2008
This is comedy heaven, filled with memorable catch-phrases, strong characters and familiar faces, the props and sets are amazing. We are transported back to the nineteen- twenties, to the home of Lord Meldrum and his various family members. We also see life through the eyes of the servants, I really can`t find a bad thing to say about this. Like a fellow reviewer, I felt this was far superior to Hi De Hi. You will recognise loads of people, including Paul Shane and co, to the British (silly ass!) officers from It Ain`t Half Hot Mum, right down to the annoying air raid warden from Dad`s Army. Wonderful stuff.