DVD Talk
Release List Reviews Shop Newsletter Forum DVD Giveaways Blu-Ray Advertise
Reviews & Columns
Reviews
DVD
TV on DVD
Blu-ray
4K UHD
International DVDs
Theatrical
Video Games

Features
Collector Series DVDs
Easter Egg Database
Interviews
DVD Talk Radio
Feature Articles

Columns
Anime Talk
DVD Stalk
DVD Savant
High-Def Revolution
Silent DVD

discussion forum
DVD Talk Forum
Resources
DVD Price Search
Customer Service #'s
RCE Info
Links

DVDTalk Info
Review Staff
About DVD Talk
Advertise
Newsletter Subscribe
Join DVD Talk Forum
DVD Talk Feeds


Sponsored Links

Search: For:
Reviews » DVD Video Reviews » Fawlty Towers - Vol.3
Fawlty Towers - Vol.3
Warner Bros. // Unrated // October 16, 2001
List Price: $24.98 [Buy now and save at Amazon]
Review by Aaron Beierle | posted October 22, 2001 | E-mail the Author
Buy from Amazon.com
C O N T E N T
V I D E O
A U D I O
E X T R A S
R E P L A Y
A D V I C E
Highly Recommended
E - M A I L
this review to a friend
P R I N T
Printer Friendly
The Movie:

Rightly considered one of the all-time best sitcoms, "Fawlty Towers" unfortunately produced only a handful of episodes. The series starred "Monty Python" member John Cleese as rude and manic hotel owner Basil Fawlty, whose motto seems to be, "this job would great if it wasn't for the customers."

Cleese is nothing short of hilarious in the main role and similar to Brit-com "Absolutely Fabulous", the writing (by Cleese) is magnificent, as Fawlty comes up with a remarkable amount of impressively funny one-liners per episode. This third disc covering the series offers 4 episodes: "Waldorf Salad", where Basil nearly exhausts himself trying to please some American guests, then has to face a legion of customers who admit they're unhappy with the service; "Basil the Rat" has him confronting the possibilty that the health inspector has just been presented with a dangerous meal; "Kipper and the Corpse" has Basil attempting to hide a corpse from his customers while waiting for the coroner and finding that there's only so many places to hide it; "The Anniversary" has Basil scrambling to fool their friends that Sybil is ill.

Again, it's too bad that "Towers" only went 12 episodes (and also, too bad that "Ab Fab" only went 18, although more are coming soon), but I suppose that it's good that both series went out at their best rather than extending the shows too long, as most American sitcoms do.


The DVD

VIDEO: "Fawlty Towers" is presented in the show's original 1.33:1 full_frame broadcast aspect ratio. While I haven't seen the other two editions of the series on DVD, the shows contained on the third disc boasted better image quality than when I've seen the show on the BBC or other places. Sharpness and detail seemed good, considering the material, and slightly better than when I've seen the show on television.

While a tiny amount of shimmering was seen on a couple of occasions, the great majority of the program seemed entirely problem free. No pixelation or edge enhancement were seen and I noticed only a fine hint of grain infrequently.

"Fawlty" presents a rather subdued color palette, but colors remained accurate and problem-free throughout. Certainly, this is the best I've seen the show look and fans should be quite pleased with Warner's efforts. Subtitles are offered in German, French and English.

SOUND: "Fawlty Towers" is presented in English mono. The show is simply dialogue-driven, and dialogue was cleanly delivered throughout, not overshadowed by the laugh track or any other elements.

MENUS:: The menus are actually quite lively. Animated with clips and background score, the menus provide a nice introduction. Episode selection also provides clips.

EXTRAS::

Commentary: Commentary is provided on the episodes by director John Howard Davies. While I applaud Warner Brothers for including director's commentary on these discs, it doesn't seem as if Davies has much to say. His comments tend to ramble when he does talk between gaps of silence. Davies mainly discusses how much he enjoyed working with the actors and points out a few other details about rehearsals and other elements of producing the episodes that he worked on. I haven't listened to the other director's tracks on the other two discs of "Fawlty Towers", but hopefully they have more to say about their experiences working on their episodes.

Outtakes: Too bad this is only a short featurette, but it does offer a minute and a half of very funny outtakes from the episodes.

Interview with John Cleese: A very interesting interview with the writer/star of the series, who discusses the suprisingly complex and lengthy writing process involved with the "Fawlty Towers" shows. He also discusses the history of the series and goes into great stories about experiences working on the series, where some of the ideas came from and the reaction to the show by audiences and critics. This is an intelligent and very informative interview that's a must for "Towers" fans to watch. The interview lasts for 18 minutes.

Interview with Prunella Scales: This is a 7 1/2 minute interview with the actress, who provides some nice tidbits about working on the show and developing her character.

Also: "Tips for a Successful Marriage" featurette; cast bios (with voiceover narration); trailers for "French and Saunders", "Father Ted", "The League of Gentlemen", "Wallace and Gromit" and "BBC America".

Final Thoughts: "Fawlty Vol. 3" contains 4 splendid episodes, with "Basil The Rat" being a highlight. Audio/video quality is fine, considering the material. Extras are mixed, but with how wonderful "Towers" is anyways, any sort of supplements are simply icing on the cake. Highly Recommended!.

Popular Reviews
1. Barry Lyndon
2. Rawhead Rex
3. My Neighbor Totoro (GKIDS Release)
4. The Ghoul
5. The Beguiled
6. Junior Bonner
7. Children Of The Corn
8. Dreamgirls: Director's Extended Edition
9. Ernie Kovacs: Take A Good Look: The Definitive Collection
10. Spirited Away


Sponsored Links
DVD Blowouts
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
7.
Alien [Blu-ray]
Buy: $19.99 $9.99
8.
9.
10.
Sponsored Links
Release List Reviews Shop Newsletter Forum DVD Giveaways Blu-Ray Advertise
Copyright 2017 DVDTalk.com All Rights Reserved. Legal Info, Privacy Policy, Terms of Use