The Tony Hancock Collection
8-DVD Box Set
WITH OPTIONAL SUBTITLES on Hancock’s Half Hour. 8 discs.
All 37 remaining episodes. Comedy. Black & White.
Years: 1956 to 1961 & 1963. Running time over 17 hours of content.
Cast: Tony Hancock, Sid James, Liz Fraser, Patricia Hayes, John Le Mesurier, Kenneth Williams, and Hattie Jacques.
Extras: The Succession – Son & Heir; Face to Face: Tony Hancock Interview; Missing Scripts PDFs; Audio Commentaries with Ray Galton, Alan Simpson and Paul Merton.
In celebration of Hancock’s Half Hour, this collection includes all 37 surviving episodes (from the original 56) of Hancock’s Half Hour and Hancock, from 1956 to 1961. This classic sitcom was written by Galton and Simpson and featured East Cheam’s most famous resident, Tony Hancock. The comedy is a splendid marriage of its superb leading star, blistering writing from Galton and Simpson, and a brilliant supporting cast.
Tony Hancock played a fictionalised version of himself in this sitcom: a loser whose plans and aspirations are continually ruined by bad luck, the scheming and devious Sidney Balmoral James (played by Sid James) or, more often than not, by his own pomposity and ambition. British TV’s first modern situation comedy, it remains one of the most influential BBC programmes of all time. Already a popular radio show, the writing team of Ray Galton and Alan Simpson initially adapted some of their radio scripts for TV. The show also used many of the radio cast and characters, including Hancock’s sidekick, played by Sid James. This helped establish Hancock as the most prominent comedy character of his day. Hancock quickly proved he had a wonderfully expressive face to accompany that constantly exasperated radio voice and established himself for all time as sitcom’s quintessential loser, frequently moaning: “Stone me, what a life!”
The six episodes of the later show simply titled Hancock, are remarkable achievements which include ‘The Radio Ham’ and ‘The Blood Donor’ – classic TV moments. Hancock was the only regular performer in the show, supported by actors such as: Dennis Price, Derek Nimmo, Brian Wilde, Francis Matthews, John Junkin, John Le Mesurier, Pauline Yates, Denholm Elliott, Patsy Smart, Patrick Cargill, Kenneth Griffith, Peter Vaughan, Donald Hewlett and Reginald Beckwith.