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Jason King: Variations On A Theme/As Easy As ABC [VHS] [1971]

4.2 out of 5 stars 6 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Actors: Peter Wyngarde, Anne Sharp, Ronald Lacey, Lee Patterson, Dennis Price
  • Writers: Dennis Spooner, Monty Berman
  • Format: VHS
  • Language: English
  • Classification: PG
  • Studio: Carlton Home Ent
  • VHS Release Date: 14 Aug. 2000
  • Run Time: 96 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00004U0JZ
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 423,211 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Product Description

Product Description

Two more cases for flamboyant crime author Jason King (Peter Wyngarde). In 'Variations on a Theme', King finds himself being used as bait for a double agent while visiting Vienna. 'As Easy as ABC' sees a pair of crooks staging a series of crimes based on those committed in King's novels.

From Amazon.co.uk

Although crime-writer-turned-detective Jason King, as played by the deep-voiced Peter Wyngarde, was the star supporting character of the 1969-70 series Department S, he seemed rather diminished when given a show of his own, thus robbing him of the straight characters necessary to show off his flamboyance. Jason King also ditched the impossible mysteries of the parent series in favour of more ordinary puzzles that the Saint or any other two-fisted hero could have solved without having to spend so much on fabulous fashion gear. That said, Wyngarde is well-matched by his foils, the value-for-money hams Dennis Price and Ronald Lacey, as the government agents who forced Jason to catch villains for them by threatening to turn him in for failing to pay his back taxes on the earnings of his bestsellers. Jason King was also the only hero on television who would take any brutal beating from the bad guys and shrug it off, only to become quite agitated when they threatened to slice his suits to bits.

Volume Three includes: "Variations on a Theme" which involves a double agent in Vienna, with guest stars Ralph Bates and Julian Glover; and "As Easy as ABC", wherein a couple of crooks borrow a robbery scheme from a Jason King novel, with Nigel Green, Michael Bates and Ayesha (UFO) Brough. --Kim Newman

Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

By Biff TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 16 Feb. 2015
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Very camp spin off from "Department S" it is now very dated but in a nice nostalgic way.

It is only two episodes so really difficult to recommend if you can get your hands on the full box set.
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Format: DVD
Intelligent and sophisticated crime drama/comedy, sadly this kind of thing would never be made today.
This is a great introduction to Jason King. The only question is why won't Carlton release more episodes?
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Format: VHS Tape
This tape is the one to get, out of (at the time of writing) the four volumes of this series available. Jason's Mark Caine research takes him to Vienna where his Secret Service history catches up with him. Ralph Bates is cast as the "Harry Lime" in this pastiche of the classic "Third Man" complete with zither score and genuine locations. Jason is slightly less flamboyant and Coiffed than usual but still has his moments. The more downbeat tone of this episode is swiftly reversed with "As Easy As ABC". This could be one of the best episodes of the series and we are treated again to real location footage occasionally the same as that seen in the last episode. As Mr King travels Europe he is persued by two "charming" crooks who take inspiration from Mark Caines exploits to commit the perfect crimes. Things take a turn for the worse after a nightwatchman is killed and the crooks relationship starts to break down along with their initial "charming" appearance. Mr King appears largely oblivious to this and spends his time indulging in reparte with representatives of the Official Police force who seem to be implying he may know something about these criminal activities and indulging his various passions with the ladies. 70s sexpot Yutte Stensgaard appears as Kings feisty judo chopping sidekick and it's all sorted out at the end by Jason who proves that he'd been setting a trap from the very beginning. Cue a great comic turn from the local policeman who takes all his fashion advice from the Master. Top notch stuff this despite it's disturbing fluctuations in tone.
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