The Vise on DVD from Pegasus is a real treat. The episodes, five in all, are sourced from the original 35mm prints and look very very good indeed. There are some production notes on the disc too, which is a very welcome extra and the package is nicely finished off with a card sleeve to slide over the Amray style case. Not an essential piece of packaging by any means, but it's a nice extra touch in my view. Pegasus have done very well recently with their releases and this is another. A second volume is waiting for release if this one performs well, with a possible third batch of episodes to follow, so if you're a fan of Mark Saber of The Yard there's plenty more to come.
The Danziger brothers were highly prolific producers of low-budget film & TV productions in the 50's and 60's. IMO "The Vise" is one of the American brothers better efforts. I have a great fondness for vintage crime dramas, and this collection of five, 25-minute stories are right up my street. Tightly scripted and well-paced, with humour inflected dialogue, these crime tales are very much of their time (thankfully!). The series benefits from an assured central performance from South African born actor, Donald Gray as the cool and diligent one-armed detective, Mark Saber.
While unraveling each case in a quite & calm manner, Saber is ably assisted by straight-talking no nonsense sidekick, Barney O'Keefe (Michael Balfour) along with secretary, Judy (Teresa Thorne). Balfour was a staple of 50's and 60's movie & TV, usually playing villainous, heavy types, so its interesting to see him on the right side of the law for a change! Broadcast in the UK in the late 1950's, this collection is a nice period piece, enjoyable entertainment from more simpler times.
Kudos to Pegasus who've really got their act together recently, with some much improved releases. The restored black & white prints used for this collection are nice and clean, with good sound quality. There are no subtitles. The extras include details of the Danzigers, along with info on the series & the 5 episodes, as well as the cast. Here's hoping Pegasus release many more episodes from the series.
Very nice early British TV detective series. Video and sound was good, the stories were entertaining, with many familiar faces in the casts. My only complaint was there are only 5 episodes here. The price was good, but if a second set is released I hope they include a few more episodes in the set. Now if someone can only release those Colonel March episodes with Boris Karloff.