The complete collected series 1-5 of the gloriously daft Victorian romp Bleak Expectations.
Gasp at the evil Mr Gently Benevolent, played by Mr Anthony Head! Weep at the trials of our young hero, Pip Bin, played by Master Tom Allen! Be moved to joy and sorrow by the remarkable narration of Mr Richard Johnson! Swoon at the fragile beauty of Pip's poor mama, played by Miss Celia Imrie! Wonder at the thespian prowess of Mr Geoffrey Whitehead as six different siblings! Follow the remarkable adventures of young Pip Bin as he struggles to rescue himself and his sisters from the schemes of his evil and badly named guardian, Mr Gently Benevolent, and the blood-curdling Hardthrasher family.
Immerse yourself in a timeless epic featuring terrifying schools, even worse prisons, opium dens, disguises, court cases, shipwrecks, underwater squirrels and swashbuckling long-lost aunts. Revel in the many fine quips, characters and scenarios written by Mr Mark Evans and produced by Mr Gareth Edwards, previously renowned for their craftsmanship on the works of Messrs Mitchell and Webb.
Series 1: Televised as 'The Bleak Old Shop of Stuff' on the BBC. Episodes: A Childhood Cruelly Kippered, An Adolescence Utterly Trashed, A Youth Utterly Crocked, A Young Adult Bitterly Dismantled, A Young Love Mercilessly Dismembered, A Life Sadly Smashed Then Happily Restored a Bit.
Series 2: A Happy Life Cruelly Re-Kippered, A Re-Kippered Life Smashed Some More, A Recovery Made Miserable, A Restoration Re-Ruined Only Even Worse, An Already Bad Life Made Worse but Sort of on Purpose, A Happy Life Broken and Then Mended a Bit.
Series 3: A Lovely Life Re-Kippered Again Once More, A Now Grim Life yet More Grimmified, A Sort of Fine Life De-Niced Completely, A Horrible Life Un-Ruined and Then Re-Ruined Again, An Evil Life Sort of Explained, Lives Lost, Ruined Wrecked and Redeemed.
Series 4: A Tolerable Life De-Happified, A New-Spoiled Life Smashed Some More, A Wretched Life Made Much, Much Sadder, A Painful Life Re-Miserablised, A Now Tricky Life Woefully Miseried Up, A Life Destroyed then Repaired and Re-Happied.
Series 5: A Pleasant Yet Dull Life Re-Evilled, A Re-Excited Life Made Distinctly Dangerous, An Alrightish Life Savagely Frozen to Bits, A Writerly Life Made Dreadfully Different, A Terrifying Life Made Even Scarier a Bit Some More, A Loved-Up Life Potentially Totally Annihilated.
Please note that the cover image has been corrected; Series 5 is included in this collection.
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One small problem
- Rian Peters
An Absolute Joy....so clever, so funny!
From the first episode this radio series sparkles with with both with and broader too. The writing is very clever - the writer is clearly very fond of Dickens but paraodies his stories beautifully, gently mocking the Victorian values, the caricature characters and the fascinations of Britain's educated middle-class readers at the time.I loved the clear Goon Show references and all of the gentle references to contemporary pop culture - Darth Vader, Close Encounters of the Third Kind etc. And what acting...! Wonderful energetic performances throughout - all of the actors clearly loving the show and the script.Fabulous value too - would have forked our twice the price for such funny and original entertainment.
The Elder Pip Bin - the pomposity and self-importance are so funny.
The moment when a character encounters alien life and reproduces the Theme to 'Close Encounters of the Third kind' will stay with me forever - sublime!
- Stephen Moffatt