TITLE: THE BENNY HILL SHOW COMPLETE & UNADULTERATED: THE NAUGHTY EARLY YEARS-- SET ONE (1969-1971)
DVD Release Date: August 24, 2004 (A&E Home Video)
color and B&W/550 min + extras.
Number of discs: 3
Number of episodes: 11
Languages and subtitles: English.
Special features: "The World’s Favorite Clown” and the
Benny Hill Cheeky Challenge Trivia Quiz
Review (out of 5 stars):
Video quality: 4.5/5
Audio quality: 4.5/5
Special Features: 4.5/5
Menu Navigation: 5/5
Get ready to laugh your pants off as the first eleven
episodes of The Benny Hill Show come to DVD! The
Benny Hill Show ran from 1969-1989 on ITV in the
United Kingdom and was a very famous sketch comedy
show. It was an inspiration to United States sketch
comedies like SNL and MAD TV. Though it lasted 20
years, only 59 episodes one-hour episodes were made.
In the United Kingdom, they usually only air a few
episodes of their series per year. Prime examples are
britcoms A Man About the House and Steptoe & Son (both
were later made into US comedies Three’s Company and
Sanford & Son). There was another Benny Hill Show
that ran from 1955 through 1968 on BBC1, but isn’t as
popular as this one.
The show did air in reruns in the United States. I
remember watching the show in the late 80s/early 90s
on WWOR in New York on late nights on the weekends I
believe and I just loved it. The show was also very
popular in the United States and aired in 30 minute
blocks instead of the full 60 minute block. Comedy
Central did air the 60 minute versions with some
scenes edited out, though. Not to fear, this DVD set
is completely unedited!
Benny Hill had a lot of recurring sketches that he did
on the show. Some include Fred Scuttle and Chow-Mein.
Each episode starts off with a quickie skit, followed
by the opening and ballad. The famous Ladybirds are
also featured. Benny’s fast paced comedy is also
featured in which Benny runs around in fast motion.
Benny’s bloopers are also popular. If anyone is
wondering, the famous Hill’s Angels don’t appear on
the show until the early 1980’s, so guys I’m sorry to
let you down on that.
As far as the packaging goes, the box cover has Benny
with glasses in a white undershirt saluting.
Underneath the logo Benny has lady legs and shoes.
Benny was always famous in that. On the top left it
mentions this is set one from 1969-1971. The back of
the box has a brief synopsis of the show itself and
the DVD set, below that, the DVD features are listed.
The inside of the box has three cases, one for each
disc. I like that layout. 20th Century FOX has done
that with some of their releases, like Garfield &
Friends. There is also a mini booklet with a detailed
synopsis of the show and has 3 fun facts. There is
another booklet advertising “A&E TV on DVD,” of past
A&E DVD released such as, Mr. Bean, Dr. Quinn, and the
Avengers. All three cases have the same cover as the
box cover. The back of each case features episodes of
what will be on the disc, with segment titles and
Disc one features episodes 1-4, disc two has episodes
5-8, and disc three has episodes 9-11. The special
features are also on disc three. Episodes 6, 7, & 8
are in black & white. Every other episode is in
color. The reason for the three black & white
episodes is because ITV’s technicians went on strike.
Each disc has the same photo as the box cover and case
The menu screens are neat. A nice video clip plays
before the menu screen comes with that famous Benny
Hill theme playing. When you select what episode you
want to view, you can either play the episode or
choose any skit in particular you want to watch. That
is a great feature, because usually there is about a
dozen or more skits per episode, so it’s easy to find
with skit selections.
The video and audio are pretty good. Remember this
show is from another country and it still looks good.
It’s not the best audio & video, but it certainly
beats how it airs on television.
The special features have a documentary which was
produced in 1998 and a nice trivia quiz. The
documentary is titled “The World’s Favorite Clown.”
It runs a little over 52 minutes and features
interviews with Benny himself, Burt Reynolds, Mickey
Rooney, and more. Yes, some clips of Hill’s Angels
are in this!! I just can’t wait to have every episode
on DVD of this series. Some other famous clips are on
this documentary, too. Like the one with Benny as a
woman reporting the news in a dress and the dress
falls out. There is also a neat trivia game out
there. Watch every episode on this DVD and let’s see
how you fair. Maybe you can be a Benny Hill expert
after taking that quiz?
This set is pretty good. I vaguely remember the early
years, so this was fun to watch. Hopefully all 59
shows come to DVD very soon. They should have done
about 20 a set instead of 11, so they can release the
entire series in about 3 volumes. With 11 episodes,
it will probably take 5 or so volumes. That is my
only objection to this set. So folks if you have
never watched Benny Hill, you must buy this set! If
you like SNL or MAD TV, then you will like this show.
Personally, it is much better than SNL and MAD TV to
me. Heck, Benny Hills probably even beats Mr. Bean,
who is also very funny!
-- Reviewed by pavanbadal on 07/29/04
To order the DVD click below and help support SitcomsOnline.com:
Please e-mail me with your sitcom related questions, sitcoms to add, and suggestions for additional links. © 1999-2014, Todd Fuller Contact Form