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63 of 65 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Awsome, landmark British television
This nicely complements the black and white episodes recently released by Amazon; Callan is simply one of the best written tv series ever shown on British tv. Set in the late 60s and early 70s, and mostly in a cold and heartless looking London, Edward Woodward plays Callan, an agent who's lot in life is not a very happy one. His is assisted, and sometimes held back by a...
Published on 26 May 2010 by Mr. C. J. Iredale

versus
0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars maybe off-air-recording
good plots, good acting, but video looks like off-the-air recording, because on some videos there's animated rectangle in upper righthand corner. Also it seems there were breaks (e.g., for commercial) in between parts of an episode evidenced by labelled acts - one, two, three, and end of - so there are about 10 seconds of breaks.

there are artifacts on video...
Published 12 days ago by daemon


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63 of 65 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Awsome, landmark British television, 26 May 2010
By 
This review is from: Callan - The Colour Years [DVD] [1970] (DVD)
This nicely complements the black and white episodes recently released by Amazon; Callan is simply one of the best written tv series ever shown on British tv. Set in the late 60s and early 70s, and mostly in a cold and heartless looking London, Edward Woodward plays Callan, an agent who's lot in life is not a very happy one. His is assisted, and sometimes held back by a succession of Hunters (Hunter being the title given to the head of the department), a psychotic Toby Meres, a brash and arrogant James Cross and Lonely, a smelly rogue who is scared witless of Callan, as he well should be.

This release is the whole of series 3 and 4, and takes the series up to it's conclusion (with the exception of a one-off some 9 years later on Channel 4, which sadly is no present here). I can recommend it as one of the most polished and absorbing performances by an actor EVER (one Mr Woodward) and some sparking scripts that really show up modern tv. If I could give it 6 stars I would. Fantastic stuff!
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Callan's colour years, 27 Nov 2011
This review is from: Callan - The Colour Years [DVD] [1970] (DVD)
The climax to the second series ended in David Callan being accidentally shot by rival agent Toby Meyers (played by Anthony Valentine) and his fate remained unknown.

Then Callan returned in 1970 in full colour production. The first episode shows Callan survived his ordeal and he soon returns to his role as a undercover agent. The only disappointment was the absence of Toby Meyers, as Anthony Valentine was unavailable for filming during the third series. His role however is filled by newcomer James Cross (played by Emmerdale's Patrick Mower) - a man so arrogant and volatile that he becomes something of a liability to the organisation. In the second episode, Cross causes the death of an innocent man by accidentally pushing him under a train, then to cover up any wrong doing, the organisation tries to prove suicide - much to the disgust of Callan. Another newcomer is William Squire's Hunter (the organisation's boss) and Russell Hunter reprises his role as Lonely.

After a successful third year, Callan returned for a fourth & final series in 1972. This saw the dramatic exit of James Cross and the welcome return of Toby Meyers (who appears to have more of a rapport with Callan this time round). The series climax is an excellent three parter in which Callan has to track down a rogue soviet agent (played by T P McKenna).

This DVD package contains all nine episodes of series three and the thirteen episodes of series four. Despite the theme to the stories, most are all pretty straight forward to follow (not like modern day BBC drama Spooks that leaves you scratching your head sometimes!). The introduction of colour makes Callan more easier to watch and the style of these stories is a marked improvement to the monochrome episodes.

One final point here. There are no extras on these discs that is a shame. When Edward Woodward passed away in 2009 - former Callan co-star Anthony Valentine spoke about his happy memories of him in a TV interview which I thought would have been a nice touch for these DVD sets that were released in 2010. Still we can't have everything! Worth buying all the same.
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29 of 30 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic spy series., 16 Oct 2010
By 
Paul Nicholls (UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Callan - The Colour Years [DVD] [1970] (DVD)
I remember my parents being avid watchers of Callan in the 60's and 70's and have vague memories of it myself.
I jumped in with series 3 and was blown away. So much better than current stuff such as Spooks for instance. You have to make allowances for the poor quality of the recordings when compared with modern productions but I soon became so engrossed in the stories that I stopped noticing.
I have since bought all the episodes available, sadly several of the episodes from the black and white days have not survived.
Writing, acting and realism is superb.
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32 of 34 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars gritty, gripping british television at its best., 9 Jun 2010
By 
jeremiah harbottle (Littlebourne, Kent.) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Callan - The Colour Years [DVD] [1970] (DVD)
i had forgotten how long it had been since the "callan" series had been issued on dvd the previous time. that was quickly deleted and was selling for huge sums.
thanks to networkdvd, we can now watch "callan" in all its glory. after enjoying the existing black and white episodes, i couldn't wait to buy these colour episodes and continue to see this hugely entertaining series.
after having viewed all of these episodes and discovering that they are intact, i can honestly refer to "callan" as one of the all-time classics of british t.v, up there with the likes of "the saint," "the prisoner" and "sweeney."
edward woodward simply made the title character his own: i can't picture any other actor playing the part. he is ably supported by russell hunter as lonely, anthony valentine as meres and patrick mower as cross. i like the twist to the endings of the episodes as they usually remind callan and the viewers just what a bitter, angry and hard-bitten character he is.
the picture and sound quality are brilliant for the most part. it's a slight pity that there aren't any special features included.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Killer Series, 28 Feb 2012
This review is from: Callan - The Colour Years [DVD] [1970] (DVD)
Callan ably demonstrates just how good television drama was in the 1970s and how dire it has now become. I fear we will never see its like again.

The writing and acting are superb, particularly Woodward's portrayal of the eponymous reluctant assassin and Russell Hunter's character, the odourous recidivist Lonely. Their love/hate relationship is a delight to behold. They need each other, even if they wish they didn't. Sadly, Woodward and Hunter are no longer with us.

Anthony Valentine (as Toby Mears) and Patrick Mower (as James Cross) provide excellent support as fellow assassins in The Section. And watch out for Clifford Rose(Kessler from Secret Army), playing the sinister psychiatrist, Doctor Snell.

The story lines will grab your attention from the start. No need for slick photography here.

For people with more than the attention span of a gnat, this classic series is highly recommended.
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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Callan - The Colour Years, 4 Jun 2010
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P. Christy (United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Callan - The Colour Years [DVD] [1970] (DVD)
This is an excellent DVD! The technical quality is very good - surprising in view of the age of the source material! The programme itself is superb. It is well written and well acted, and clearly shows how far standards have fallen in TV drama in the intervening years. Thoroughly recommended!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Spying tonight, 23 Jun 2013
By 
Arch Stanton (Cornwall, England.) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Callan - The Colour Years [DVD] [1970] (DVD)
David Callan is a spy and an integral part of British security section personnel, protecting a Britain, that is almost as cold as the war he's an operative in. His work is his life, it has to be, or it could be the end of it. His only friend a smelly, unlikeable thief, who rather aptly goes by the name 'Lonely'. Although he's the best at what he does and is fully aware of his duty, Callan hates the inhuman nature of his work and constantly locks horns with his superiors, who's next orders often involve a red file...

If not the best, then certainly one of the best TV series ever made. It's a tough, slow burn spy drama, so don't expect flash cars, casinos on the French Riviera, or ladies in bikinis swigging vodka martinis. Instead, think lonely men, painting lead toy soldiers, in a grubby London bedsit, before their next adventure into the snub nosed and impersonal world of the spy game.
Often bleak, sometimes brutal and quite regularly moving, funny and clever, this features mostly excellent acting from a small cast and has several returning characters and a basic story arc, linking the (usually) individual episodes. This has had me engrossed for the last few weeks, with it's story lines and plot developments. There are many stand out moments and this comes highly recommended regardless of the fact that you may find yourself saying "But Mr Callan sir, I cant sir.. I'M ON BAIL" every time someone asks you to do something you don't want to. Or is that just me?
The Network release (2010) hasn't a single extra. The prints certainly watchable. Covering the whole of series 3&4 over six discs.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Callan Tapes, 9 May 2013
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This review is from: Callan - The Colour Years [DVD] [1970] (DVD)
This set of Callan has been very enjoyable. Aged over 70 now and used to watch this serial when it was originally on TV. Nice to see it again
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Genius, one of best shows ever!, 6 Mar 2012
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Mr. C. J. Waldron "mhsob" (UK & Australia) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Callan - The Colour Years [DVD] [1970] (DVD)
Scary, intelligent, brutal at times, psychologically disturbing. This is what the TV was invented for. Callan is British drama at its very best and Edward Woodward is menacingly brilliant, as are the rest of the characters. There has never been another programme like it and I doubt there ever will be.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful, 30 Dec 2011
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This review is from: Callan - The Colour Years [DVD] [1970] (DVD)
This is good, quite often we look back on old TV series through rose coloured glasses, when we see them again they are usually not as good as we once thought they were, Callan is different, it has none of the computer generated special effects and gimmicks that today's TV producers are obsessed with yet is very entertaining and as good today as it was when originally shown, it's a great shame that many episodes were lost. Highly recommended.
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Callan - The Colour Years [DVD] [1970]
Callan - The Colour Years [DVD] [1970] by Edward Woodward (DVD - 2010)
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