The Series (4/5)
When I was younger Roger Moore was my James Bond. It wasn't that he was my first James Bond, I just remember that when TBS did “X” Days of Bond, I would almost always get more caught in Moore's films more than the others. I realize as an adult that the Moore films, more so than any of the other Bond films released at the time were gimmicky, such as sending Bond into space with Moonraker, having villains with steel jaws, and weapons like the Golden Gun introduced. It was also around this time, I was becoming hooked on the Golden Age of television through Nick at Nite and other such late night programming, and through this I discovered Roger Moore as the Saint. At first, being that the first episode I caught was color I thought I was watching some sort of weird missing Bond thing that I had never seen before, but then remembered that TBS showed them all in a marathon, so there was no way I had missed it. Once I had figured out what the show was, I began to watch it as religiously as I could, because it was not exactly on a schedule I could follow.
The Saint stars Roger Moore as Simon Templar, his character is considered a thief with a heart of gold. Basically, a thief who only steals from other criminals, that being said the show is not about Templar's attempts at crime, and is a cool blend of mystery, crime, and the spy genre. Basically, like the British Sci-Fi import Doctor Who, it's the sort of show that can be a chameleon, and sort of be whatever it wants to be episode to episode. One episode can be a more crime driven episode, others can fall into the spy genre, and beyond. This gives some rationale to how the show lasted 6 series, and 118 episodes.
If you've seen Roger Moore as James Bond, and have not seen an episode of the Saint, you will have some idea of how he performs the roles, as he seems to have brought a lot of Simon Templar into Ian Fleming's most famous creation (*hint Not Chitty Chitty Bang Bang). The Saint has had it's various series released on DVD in various configurations internationally since the inception of the format, however, Shout! Factory through their Timeless Media sub-label have done fans quite a service by bringing all the series together with some light extras in one whole package making it the set to get for fans of the Saint.
Shout! Factory/Timeless Media presents the Saint in a series of 1:33:1 transfer preserving the series original OAR. The first 71 episodes of the Saint were shot in Black and White, the final 47 in color. The black and white episodes of the series look the best out of them all with stable contrast, and nice detail. The color episodes lose some detail, and look a bit washed out at times, but nicely reproduce the overall look of the series. There is some damage present from whatever source material was used, but it's not a deal breaker, and isn't a huge distraction.
The audio for the series is presented in a Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono track, and it works well for the most part with dialogue being audible, but things do get a bit hot, and distorted from time to time, but again it's not such a huge problem that it overtakes the positives of the A/V in the set.
I didn't expect much if anything in this set with the Timeless branding, and was thus surprised to have 9 episodes with commentary by Roger Moore, and a 2 minute behind the scenes segment.
Shout Factory/Timeless Media releases The Saint in a complete series box set. The A/V is decent, but that's to be expected, but the show is a load of fun. There are some nice extras. RECOMMENDED.