Dec 11, 2008

Upcoming Spy DVDs: Si, Baroni!

The Baron Comes to America!

I’m so happy that other distributors have finally picked up the slack that A&E left dangling when they stopped distributing Sixties ITC classics in America. Last year we got Jason King from Image, and early next year (March 10, as reported by TVShowsOnDVD) Koch Media will release The Baron: The Complete Series in Region 1. Now if only someone would step up to distribute Man In A Suitcase and Department S (and if A&E would give use the long overdue second volumes of The Champions and Randall & Hopkirk, Deceased), we Americans would have a pretty thorough library of classic ITC adventure series! The Baron stars American Steve Forrest (who would go on to star in S.W.A.T. in the Seventies) as John Creasey’s titular antiques dealer-cum-spy (here reimagined as a cattle baron instead of a member of the peerage to accommodate Forrest’s accent) in this entertaining Saint imitator from one of the producers of the Roger Moore hit. The series was pretty uneven in terms of quality, but the good episodes make it well worth seeing for fans of The Saint. It even spawned a feature film in Europe, made by editing together two of the series' best episodes. The Ipcress File’s Sue Lloyd co-starred in The Baron. There’s no word yet on extras, but I’d expect this to follow the typical American pattern and be bare bones. Network’s UK version and Umbrella’s Australian release both contain the same fantastic assortments of extras usually associated with those companies. TVShowsOnDVD reports that the price is expected to be in the $55-$75 range, but Amazon has the series (rather creatively listed) available to pre-order for just $41.99.

Get Smart Cheap

For spy fans on a budget (or comedy fans who love Don Adams–but only in smallish doses), HBO Home Video continues their release of single seasons of the beloved series that same day, March 10, with Get Smart: The Complete Second Season, reports TVShowsOnDVD. Like their standalone release of the first season, this set will not include the feature-laden bonus disc that come in The Complete Series Gift Set. It should, however, contain the episode introductions from Barbara Feldon, so you do get a lot of value for your dollar at the bargain price of $24.99. (Cheaper, of course, on Amazon.)

1 comment:

Delmo said...

Nice Amazon listing.

It's a shame the box art isn't as nice as the Network & Umbrella versions. Valerie Leon is nice to look at but only appeared in one episode. That should be Sue Lloyd in her place.