Customer Review

83 of 85 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Classic TV horror from the 1970's, 30 Jun. 2006
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This review is from: Beasts - The Complete Series [DVD] [1976] (DVD)
I saw this series when it first came out and if there have been any re-runs I have missed them. There are only 6 episodes, plus an extra "Murrain" from another series. The first one, 'Baby' is the one I most remember and one particular image from this episode has stayed with me ever since. A vet and his pregnant wife move into a new home in the countryside. They find an old jar and inside it a strange mummified creature. The wife hears that the area has a history of animal miscarriages and this plays on her mind,soon she starts to see the rocking chair moving and hears strange noises. The suspense builds up brilliantly until the last scene when she goes to investigate a noise downstairs and sees.....well you just have to see it.
The second one is about a ghostly dolphin 'Buddyboy' and is more of a psychological horror. It stars Martin Shaw as the owner of an adult movie theatre, thus allowing a few brief breast flashes to be used.
"The Dummy" concerns a C list actor's descent into alcoholism over his wife, who has left him for another actor and his dependence on one role, that of a shrunken Godzilla "The Dummy" of the title. Is he pushed over the edge by his depression or is there something more sinister?
"Special Offer" is based in a supermarket where strange things are occurring. Could it be their mascot "Briteway Billy" is really alive or are the poltergeist like disturbances more do with the plain check-out girl's infatuation with her boss. A great character performance by Pauline Quirke.
"What Big Eyes" has a man who tries to become a werewolf by extracting blood from wolves and experimenting on himself. An RSPCA inspector checking on the wolves disappearances is on his trail.
"During Barty's Party" is a claustrophobic tale of an elderly couple whose home comes under attack from what they believe to be a horde of rats, once again nothing is seen. Their only hope appears to be contact via a radio phone-in show.
There is no closing music which neatly sets off the fact that the stories tend to end with a suggestion of the terror to come rather than complete disclosure, some may regard this as a weakness but at the time I remember it being very effective and creepy.
You also get a booklet on the making of the series and several PDF files of the scripts you can look at on your PC. Well done Network for getting this ATV gem on release, let's hope some more see the light of day soon.
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Showing 1-2 of 2 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 15 Jan 2011 19:20:53 GMT
I'm glad of this assesment - I was eleven when it first aired and particularly remember Baby being shockingly scary. Superior British horror, which I will now buy.

In reply to an earlier post on 17 Sep 2011 22:01:01 BDT
Has the "Baby" episode been cut? In the scene in the woods, where the girl is chased out by the thing, we don't see the thing itself. I saw the episode on ITV in 1976 and I seem to remember that it did actually show the thing running after her, but only for a few seconds. Does anyone else remember this, or have I got it wrong?
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I. R. Kerr
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Location: Lancashire

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