12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
Dark and serious but simply the best!,
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This review is from: Secret Army - The Complete BBC Series 1, 2 & 3 [DVD] (DVD)
I happened to see a recent broadcast on satellite TV which whet my appetite to revisit this atmospheric series which I think is one of the best ever wartime serials.
Secret Army was filmed in the UK and Belgium and three series (comprising 43 episodes) were broadcast on BBC1 between early 1977 and late 1979. Created by Gerard Glaister (also responsible for the Colditz series) Secret Army tells the story of the Belgian resistance movement during the Second World War dedicated to repatriating Allied airmen, usually having been shot down by the Luftwaffe. This boxed set of 12 DVDs runs for about 40 hours and contains a number of extras such as cast interviews and is very well presented. Audio and visual quality is good considering the vintage of the episodes.
To me, one of the selling points of the series is that whilst each episode is a self contained story they also link together and this adds to the compulsion to see how the overall plot unfolds. I think the acting is very good, there's plenty of tension and atmosphere, and, I believe a lot of effort was invested in historical authenticity. This latter point also makes the series a fitting tribute to those involved in the sort of operations portrayed. The overall "hue" of all the episodes is "dark and dangerous" and full of suspense.
For a series of this vintage the cost of this boxed set does seem high, but then perhaps that is a reflection of the sustained interest there is in the series and its enduring quality.
I think even if it's your "first time round" and you haven't seen Secret Army before you'll be riveted by this set which makes it a worthwhile investment. Also, out of interest, there is a book "The Complete Secret Army: An Unofficial and Unauthorised Guide to the Classic TV Drama Series" by Andy Priestner which gives a further fascinating insight into the world of Secret Army. Running to over 600 pages the book has been described as "the Secret Army Lover's Bible".
This boxed DVD set, although expensive, is one of TV's truly classic drama series and well worth buying. I'm confident you'll watch it many times over the years. Recommended.