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Chan vs. other detectives

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jonkaplan

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In terms of film and TV detectives, is Chan your favorite one?  For me, I have to pick 1. Columbo; 2. Oland Chan; and 3. Rathbone Holmes   WHO ARE YOUR PICKS?

Ed Kasprowicz

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Chan's always been #1 with me, going all the way back to my early television days in the 1950's. I also like the Lord Peter Wimsey series from Masterpiece Mysteries (both Ian Carmichael and Edward Petherbridge), and the 3 Bill Crane movies that Universal Studios produced in the 1930's. I do tend to watch a lot of Sherlock Holmes (in almost any form) as well. I've got to say that I'm really enjoying the Miss Fisher Mysteries (Australian made) that PBS is running now. They're high quality productions with the best female sleuth since Emma Peel. ...Ed K.

TARNEVERRO

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I agree (per usual) with Ed.  Can't beat Oland Chan.  I think my 2nd choice would be Powell's Nick Charles.  Foyle at #3.  Lynley at #4.  Also agree that Miss Fisher is top notch!  Currently I am really enjoying Richard Poole (played by Ben Miller) in the 1st season DVD set of Death In Paradise, looking forward to season two.  I see season 4 came out this year, but Miller left after one episode of season 3, and reviewers seem to agree that the series suffered from that loss.

Steve O

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For me, it is Perry Mason, Chan, and Rathbone Holmes.

My wife got me to watch the new British Sherlock series (with Benedict Cumberbatch).  It took some getting used to but I rather enjoy it (there's only been less than a dozen made) as it keeps the essential Holmes elements while making him part of the post 9/11 world.  As others said above, the British make excellent mystery series. 

channer

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I also enjoyed watching some of the Chan movies while growing up; it seems they were usually the Monogram series with Birmingham Brown on board. It was later that I discovered the Oland Chan and the films with higher production values. The Nick and Nora Charles films were discovered and appreciated to varying degrees, with the earlier entries enjoyed more. My wife and I both enjoyed the Lord Peter Wimsey mysteries a great deal years ago, but haven't seen one of those in a very long time. Is there somewhere you can go in cyberspace in order to see a Lord Peter film without having to be an IT enginer or having to pay a king's ransom to do so? 
 

GaryLeeOz

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My wife and I both enjoyed the Lord Peter Wimsey mysteries a great deal years ago, but haven't seen one of those in a very long time. Is there somewhere you can go in cyberspace in order to see a Lord Peter film without having to be an IT enginer or having to pay a king's ransom to do so?

There are some on Youtube if you do a search on "lord peter wimsey".
Here's a link  https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=lord+peter+wimsey+full+episodes
(I don't think Youtube needs anything installed on your computer to play them ... whereas previously you needed flashplayer).

channer

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Thank you, Gary. I should have thought to look there first. It looks as if many hours of viewing pleasure lie ahead. Thanks again.

rodb

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I agree (per usual) with Ed.  Can't beat Oland Chan.  I think my 2nd choice would be Powell's Nick Charles.  Foyle at #3.  Lynley at #4.  Also agree that Miss Fisher is top notch!  Currently I am really enjoying Richard Poole (played by Ben Miller) in the 1st season DVD set of Death In Paradise, looking forward to season two.  I see season 4 came out this year, but Miller left after one episode of season 3, and reviewers seem to agree that the series suffered from that loss.

agree with you.  Chan#1-a    thin man #1-b

channer

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Speaking of other detectives, TCM today showed the 1940 movie Haunted Honeymoon, with Robert Montgomery playing the part of Lord Peter Wimsey and Constance Cummings playing Lady Wimsey. The character actor Robert Newton played a lesser character in the movie. Montgomery's Lord Peter would have been enjoyed more if I hadn't been spoiled by Ian Carmichael's rendition of that role in later movies shown on PBS.

Ed Kasprowicz

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Agreed! The Ian Charmichael Wimseys were so well done that I'd rank them right up there with the Fox Chans and the Universal Bill Cranes. I picked up the entire set about 20 years ago and still love to watch them every year, or so. The 3 stories done with Edward Petherbridge as Wimsey were also first rate recordings. I notice that Amazon is selling The Complete Collection (of Ian Charmichael Wimseys) for $33.95. It looks like the same recordings from that I have, but, on 6 discs instead of 12. They can get you that set too, but the prices start at $350.00. ...Ed K.
Last Edit: January 30, 2015, 03:48:57 pm by Ed Kasprowicz

channer

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I'm sure this is a dumb question, Ed, but why the wide disparity in the prices of the sets?

Ed Kasprowicz

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The new, lower priced set has the stories on one disc apiece, and probably little, or no, extra material. The older issue came on at least 2 discs per story, with extensive interviews with Ian Charmichael, and other extra material. It was as elegant a set of dvds as I've ever seen. And, since it was issued so many years ago, there's probably a supply/demand factor involved as well. I think that the new set is issued by Acorn, the company that sells most of the good PBS series, so I'm pretty sure that the quality is going to be good. I'd order them in a heartbeat if I didn't already own the older set, which I seem to remember listing for around $100.00 at the time they came out. ...Ed K.

channer

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I enjoy the actor Warren William playing the part of Michael Lanyard, the Lone Wolf, in a series of movies made both before the outbreak of World War II and during the war. I find his approach to the role entertaining, and regret his relatively early demise which cut short an interesting film career.

GaryLeeOz

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How about the Cisco Kid as a TV detective.

In one episode he was given a card deck with hidden messages written on the side of the deck. The assault victim gave him the clue "Eight Kings Threatened To Save Ninety Five Queens For One Sick Knave" which Cisco worked out as the way to order the cards so that they formed the hidden messages. I had to look up the "Eight Kings Stack" trick on Google to work out what Cisco meant ... anyway the message tells you to put the cards in the following order :- 8, K, 3, 10, 2, 7, 9, 5, Q, 4, Ace, 6, J.  Isn't that better than Captain Midnite's decoder ring ?

In another episode, the bank robbers used a plot device similar to ones used in Charlie Chan in Egypt and in one of the Mr Wong Detective movies (which was later recycled as a Roland Winters Chan movie) ... except the gas just put people to sleep. There aren't that many actual killings in Cisco (what with Cisco shooting baddies in their gun hand).   
Last Edit: June 05, 2015, 09:54:36 pm by GaryLeeOz

channer

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TCM recently had a Bulldog Drummond marathon over a several hour period. I eagerly started watching some of them, but soon found the characters shallow and predictable, the scripts sophomoric and the attempts at humor heavy-handed. I was really disappointed and finally gave up on the last couple of them. Did anyone have a better opinion of these movies than I did? Perhaps the books about him are a better way to appreciate the character Drummond.