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4.2 out of 5 stars46
4.2 out of 5 stars
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on 31 August 2010
Brilliant ITV series of many years ago......picture quality excellent and 4x3 . There is NO mention on the outer or inner boxes of ENGLISH SUB-TITLES but I can CONFIRM that ENGLISH SUBTITLES only are thankfully included on ALL the discs for those with Hard of Hearing .
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on 8 September 2010
Do you want stories of derring-do, danger and nerve, and a sense of having accompanied the hero, then Raffles is for you.

The author EW Hornung was a friend of Conan Doyle's and later his brother-in law.
But where Sherlock Holmes was a creation of unimpeachable integrity, Raffles is a gentleman thief! However, sympathy is drawn to Raffles because of his many virtues, and a sense that he is also being hounded by nasty elements which must be overcome. He is a match for Sherlock Holmes in gallantry and loyalty, and perhaps more likeable. His crimes are delicious fun.

The original stories were very intelligent, making plain some of the motivations and human weaknesses of the hero Raffles and his faithful pal Bunny. And like life, the stupid, the tragic and the unexpected all intervene, rather like difficult waves for the heros to navigate. Both thrilling and believable, you feel you are there. The stories move quickly and leave you hanging around for more!

The original TV series was great fun. 5 stars without hesitation. The stories are so good that it will not be long before BBC/ITV have a go at a remake.

I absolutely RECOMMEND viewers to read the short stories because they are ripping yarns for bed time.
NB - there were 4 volumes of stories - "Amateur cracksman" - the beginnings, "Black mask" - where he fakes his death after being uncovered, but makes an amazing comeback under a new guise. Other volumes were "Midnight thief" and "Mr Justice Raffles" I believe. I think that the TV series focused on the first volume but not entirely sure.
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VINE VOICEon 31 December 2010
Brilliant if you like 'the old stuff' like I do - production values for its time quite acceptable but anything with Anthony Valentine in it can't be bad. I could recall some of the plots from having seen it when it went out years ago on TV and perhaps it may seem dated by today's standards(?), but its still entertaining.
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I was 8 when I last watched Raffles and I used to love it! 42 now so thought I'd buy this entire series box set and watch them all properly and how glad I am that I did! Arthur J Raffles, socialite man about town and England cricket all rounder by day staying at the very respectable Albany in London. By night assisted by his friend Harry Bunny Manders he is the top cracksman/thief and master of disguise and accents whom steals primarily jewellery to fund his and Bunny's extravagent exsistance and being continuously hounded by the cracking Inspector Mackenzie whom suspects Raffles but just cannot nail him. . .or can he? As an adult I can now admire the dialog/script that was written for Raffles and I couldn't imagine anybody except Anthony Valentine and Christopher Strauli delivering it! Some of the accents that Anthony Valentine pulls off are spot on, brilliant stuff indeed! The locations are fantastic as are the period fixtures, clothes etc. There are 13 episodes which take in all of the short stories by E. W. Hornung, brother in law of Arthur Conan Doyle the creator of Sherlock Holmes. The last episode is a corker! I'll definitely be watching this again at some stage in the future as they certainly don't make them like this anymore! Highly recommended viewing!
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on 6 February 2012
Seems to be some mixed messages about just what's in this box set

so wanted to confirm that this is the full 13 part 1977 series and also the 1975 pilot The amateur cracksman, which is on disc one before the first of the 1977 episodes

14 episodes in total

have also uploaded an image of the disc menu
review image
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on 14 January 2011
A great series from the 1970s with Anthony Valentine in sparkling form as Raffles the Amateur Cracksman, all round cricketer and sportsman. The producers spent a lot of money on this show, reproducing the atmosphere of Albany, the exclusive residence off Piccadilly where Raffles lives, and showing all fourteen episodes of derring do (not thirteen as advertised - the pilot episode based on Hornung's story 'Gentlemen and Players' is included).

Anthony Valentine is the definitive A.J. Raffles. Don't miss this excellent production of E.W. Hornung's heroic creation. And after watching the series, you may feel inclined to read Hornung's elegantly written stories about his eponymous hero.
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on 19 May 2011
I was a young 20 year old woman when this programme came out in 1977. I loved Anthony Valentines work in Colditz and Callan and wondered what he would make of the character as Raffles. He was brilliant. I loved it. If you like good quality period drama then this one is for you. Raffles is a gentleman burglar. He is teamed up with Bunny Manners(played by Christopher Strauli) where each time they go burglaring...something goes wrong..it would, wouln't it otherwise you would not have 13 entertaining stories. Written by Phillip Mackie, the diaglog is based on the original books. There are not too many changes from the books, although I won't go into details on that, as the television series did to keep true to the stories written by Hornung. I loved Raffles taking the mickey out of the police.....oh I could go on about the series however go and buy the DVDs as you will not be disappointed.
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on 5 March 2004
If memory serves me well, these shows were originally aired on Friday evenings and I watched every one. I was only a nipper back then but the memory of how much I enjoyed the exploits of Raffles and Bunny persuaded me to shell out to buy this DVD. Would it be as good as I remembered ? I managed to miss the satellite repeats a few years back - would it appeal as much now as it did all those years ago ? I'm happy to report that the answer is a resounding 'Yes'. Anthony Valentine is absolutely perfect in the role of Raffles, all easy charm and good nature layered over an unshakeable confidence and an iron nerve. His amiable sidekick Bunny (equally effectively played by Christopher Strauli) is the perfect foil for Raffles, and despite two very different characters their friendship develops convincingly over the course of the five episodes here. I suppose if viewed cynically the passage of a quarter of a century has left its mark...the female characters seem to be more decorative than effective and some of the plot twists no longer seems as convoluted as once they did. There's very little violence and the sex scenes which seem obligatory thesedays don't even threaten to make an appearance. There are no real complaints though...'Raffles' is still excellent entertainment, well written and acted (There seems to be a procession of superb British character actors) and the stories are always interesting and even gripping. A little imagination could go a long way towards re-invigorating the increasingly tired crime genre on television, as this series managed to do in its day. If only 'Cribb' and 'Shoestring' could get DVD releases, my viewing pleasure would be complete....
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on 19 September 2013
I lost my first order at the Post Office and have just ordered another with priority mailing. I am awaiting receipt eagerly and KNOW it will be a joy to watch.

I saw some of the series as a teenager in the 80s and just got hooked. Raffles' intelligence, eloquence and nerve were amazing.

Till today, I still narrate the scene where, after a job, inspector Mackenzie had barged in on Raffles at home in an attempt to catch him with the goods.After a lot of huffing and puffing, he left empty handed. Afterwards, Raffles very easily explained to Bunny that the loot was all the while in his travelling bag on the table in front of MacKenzie.

Then he said what I will never forget; "Mackenzie is unfit to catch me".(Or somethinessentially to that effect - but that is how I tell it).

That scene and that statement have stayed with me and affected my attitude fundamentally.

This is a lovely and important collection; I recommend it without any resrvation.

PS: English is not my first language - so please excuse the defects in my narration.
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on 12 February 2011
The original story of 'gentleman cracksman' and sidekick, wreaking swathes through the country-house set's jewels, at the same time as playing cricket for England and dodging Scotland Yard.

For all its public school airs, it is intelligent and best described as pre-Agatha Christie, but from the sucessful and sympathetic criminal point of view! Derived from the novel of the same name and spawning imitators in other countries, (Arcel Lupin in France) worthy entertainment. On such shoulders as these does Agatha Christie stand. LOve one and you'll like the other. The production quality is not so lavish as much of the modern Agatha Christie though it is very adequate.

Little in the way of extras (you do get option of subtitles), and you get straight to the feature (without fluff or adverts) at switch on. I like this in my library.
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