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Customer reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
98
4.8 out of 5 stars
Format: DVD|Change
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on 5 September 2014
After watching this in the 1970's and now showing my age, was so glad to hear that The Professionals was getting a make over. It could have been made yesterday, the picture is so crystal clear and everything is so perfect. Am looking forward to buying the rest of the series when it is released. A wonderful series which brings back so many memories. Shame Lewis Collins is no longer with us. If you want to watch something which shows just how good blu-ray is then get this.
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on 11 April 2017
Been watching this on itv and decided to buy it and it was worth the buy, it has been remastered
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on 5 August 2017
Really impressed with the picture quality. I had the series on DVD but it was very poor. Also love the subtitles option rare for older TV series box sets.
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on 14 April 2017
If you loved it back in the 70s, you'll love it again now. Great to see the old cars and sights of London back in the day, too!
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on 6 March 2017
excellent series. great picture and audio. appreciate English subtitles...
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on 11 March 2017
Excellent quality remaster.
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on 17 December 2014
Excellent remastering and looking forward to series 2, 3 & 4. Dispatch was excellent as usual.
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on 12 June 2017
On time, exactly when it said it would be. Perfect
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on 1 April 2014
Network have done a fantastic job restoring the picture quality of "The Professionals" to a level never seen before, as without any exaggeration it looks as though it was filmed this year (apart from the flares). I can't praise them enough on this restoration project which now includes the original series one titles on all episodes that were replaced on VHS and DVD by those from series two. There is also a new 5.1 surround mix that adds extra depth to the series, along with a disc of extras, which are a bit of a let down as the documentary is from 18 years ago, although it is very informative.

I really hope that it won't be too long before they release the other three series on Blu-ray along with "The New Professionals".

Now to my gripe with the box itself. The packaging is rather flimsy and in typical Network style have chosen to house it in DVD size like they do with their audio CD soundtrack albums. I do realise that there is a book included, but it could have been reformatted to fit a Blu-ray sized box. Apart from that I can find nothing wrong with this excellent release.
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Wow! Network DVD have given their expert techniques to this first series of The Professionals. Network DVD have proved that cult British TV is in good hands under their management many times before so it shouldn't be a surprise that this edition looks better than ever. But actually it is a bit surprising that something can look so good after all these years. It really does look like it was made yesterday, In fact its just fabulously stunning. Network have had help from the BBC with the restoration but it is a Network project and the end result is great.

Honestly, if you have never owned a set of the Professionals this is easily the greatest version. And if you have already had a set before then believe me, it is worth re buying and getting this set because the picture quality is incredible. I had the complete set of the early 2005 editions by Kult TV Contender Entertainment group. That set suggested Digital remastered. and it is clear from its grainy appearance that it was only a digital copy.

This new version by Network is way ahead of that earlier release. We are taken back to the original film stock and there is clear re balance of tone and colour restoration. The picture is sharp, clear, well lit, great clarity and colour. I think the show really does look better than it did back in the 1970s because of the closeness to the original film and restoration as well as modern High definition viewing equipment.
If you can imagine the old contender issues as being mucky windows that made everything seen through them murky and drained of colour. Then this network edition is the clean windows version with sparkling clarity.

The other great thing about this set is that the restoration goes on to put all of the correct episodes on the set for series one. Unlike the Contender issue that had an episode added that was originally screened as a series two episode. This set keeps faithful to the production order for series one. Not transmission order but production order.
The set restores the episodes so that they are uncut and include the original opening titles with the training sequences on the first few episodes and not the re edited and cut more familiar versions from the later episodes that have appeared since original release in the 1970s. The set does include the banned Klansman episode which does look better than ever.

I believe that this is possibly the first time that Network have included Subtitles for the deaf on a DVD set. Its about time. Most companies have been doing it for years. Anyway, better late than never. I know Network have been adding subtitles to some of their Blu ray issues but I don't think they have given enough attention to DVD.

So, like the restoration on previous issues by Network such as The Prisoner, Space 1999 and the Sweeney, this is a truly great release and I look forward to series two, three and four. I hope they don't take too long although Network do seem to take a few years to actually complete the set of series releases.
If you have the contender issues and you want to re buy with this version, I can only recommend that you do so. I would also urge you not to get rid of the contender issue of series one just yet since one episode called rogue will be lost until we can get the Network edition of series two with the correct episode run in production order.

The Professionals is an exciting series from the 1970s. This first series is very good and it is excellently presented.

After the success of the TV series the New Avengers that had been produced by Avengers MK1 productions and London Weekend Television, creators and producers Brian Clemens and Albert Fennell created this new series The Professionals. The show was screened on the ITV network in 1977. The first series had 13 episodes and it was a big hit with viewers.
The series stars Martin Shaw, Lewis Collins and Gordon Jackson as agents of the fictional CI5.
The series was created to make a show that would build on the hard edged and gritty toughness of earlier show The Sweeney as well as making a British series that mirrored the sort of fast action of American series Starskey and Hutch.
Clemens and Fennell were executive producers of the show. They had much experience in British TV producing and writing for many shows including the Avengers during the 1960s and the New Avengers more recently. They also brought in composer Laurie Johnson who had composed music for The Avengers and The New Avengers, to write the music score for this new show. This first series was produced by Sidney Hayers.
Albert Fennell, Brian Clemens and composer Laurie Johnson had worked together in the 1960s and together had created MK1 productions to make the New Avengers. The same team as MK1 productions now produced The Professionals.

Criminal Intelligence 5, or CI5 is a special branch of British Law that deals with crime of a serious nature that go beyond the capability of the police. It is a Unit that is instructed by the Home Secretary.
CI5 is fictitious but it enabled the writers to give our heroes a wide variety of situations to deal with.
It has similar appearance to the real MI5 or CID but being fictitious also gave the show more artistic licence that the portrayal of the Flying Squad in The Sweeney. CI5 deal with espionage, cold war problems, terrorists, civil unrest, and large scale crime.

The head of CI5 is George Cowley, a no nonsense leader that believes in fighting fire with fire. His best agents are Ray Doyle (Martin Shaw), a softer more caring but hot headed ex detective constable who has worked the tough parts of London, and William Bodie (Lewis Collins) who is an ex paratrooper and SAS sergeant with a calmer but tough attitude.
The pair are a solid unit, faithful to each other and prepared to break the rules if it gets the right result.
Both actors Shaw and Collins had played villains on an episode of The New Avengers ('Obsession') together the year before.

This first series has a lot of writing from Brian Clemens and the show has a lot of variety in the plot lines. There is gradual character development and plenty of action. The show is fast paced without a dull moment.
The show was often criticised for its violence even though there is little blood seen. There are scenes of fast chases, car chases, fist fights, shootings, martial arts and asphyxiation however.
One episode here in season one, "Klansmen" was not screened in the UK. After production TV executives withdrew it from transmission for its Race related theme.
The show was also criticised for its "political incorrectness" for use of so called sexist and racist terms.
The controversy and disagreement about its suitability for screening led to the show being blocked for repeating on terrestrial television for over two decades. And the episode Klansmen is always left out.

There are a number of cars featured in the series. Some are from British Leyland in the early series, with some Rover models, some Triumph models, a Leyland Princess and a Dolomite Spirit. Later series feature cars by Ford with the Capri, Granada, Escort and Cortina.

This is a brilliant release both on DVD and Blu Ray and it is really nicely presented in good package where the spine is one and a quarter inch thick. There is an interesting book included.
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