Just to clarify, every episode is being presented as originally broadcast, with the exception of four episodes. These are:
S02E06 - It's a Living (The 'Cancer' line was muted on original TX)
S02E11 - How Not to be Seen (Cartoon Religions and Conquistador Coffee Campaign were both cut on original TX - we are reinstating Cartoon Religions only as we only have an off-air VHS of Coffee. This will still make it longer than original TX)
S03E05 - Summarize Proust (The 'masturbating' line was cut on original TX)
S03E09 - Nude Organist - This is a biggie. We are reinstating the entire animation, so it is longer than TX by quite a bit. We had some difficulty with the sound on this but it will be presented as it would have been seen, if Ian MacNaughton hadn't cut it. In addition, there is a second Terry Gilliam approved soundtrack to go with it. So, you will see it as it was originally broadcast, but with the full animation withing the body of the show.
Other highlights for me are the extra content on Scott of the Sahara, Ken Clean Air System, Ursula Hitler...all of it really. The only disappointment was not finding a broadcast quality version of material such as Mr. Neutron. Most of it is fully restored, but there are two sections from videotape where we had to go with an inferior quality recording. But it's presented in context.
I'll try and answer as best I can, but some material may be included in the Andrew Pixley book, so I don't want to tread on his toes.
In 'How to Recognise Different parts of the Body', no original broadcast versions survived. For a time, we were going to use an off-air VHS to replace the sound. However, circumstances changed and the original sound is intact on the episode as presented. Once people have had a chance to see what we've done, I can go into more detail, but I suspect that people will be rewriting Python history once the Bluray is released. Girl from Ipanema was on both the original broadcast and repeat and I have no idea where the 'Jeannie With The Dark Brown Hair' appeared in the timeline. But it's not on any BBC version, so we've not gone there.
Silly Bunt. Well, unlike the Bus Conductor sketch, that was cut during the original VT edit, so only appeared in scripts and to those lucky few present at the studio recording. Bus conductor was in an early edit which did in fact survive until around 1980. More on that later, but the only copy we could find wasn't good enough quality to put back in to the episode and it wasn't present in the original broadcast anyway.
What I can say is that there was a big change in October 1979. Those with an historical perspective will understand the significance of that date and I'll be able to elaborate further once the Bluray has been released.
The reinstatement in 'Salad days' is in fact the restoration of the 'Biggles Dictates a Letter' sketch. Sometime after 1979, the original tape was damaged at the BBC. It was physically ripped in two and when it was repaired, almost 3 seconds were missing. I can tell you now that it is a miracle that we have been able to fully restore it seamlessly. I know that the Sony release was intact, but that release was heavily compromised in quality.
Finally, the 'And Now for Something Completely Different' feature is the title of a short film made by film student Vic Jamison in 1970. It's a remarkable thing, behind the scenes footage of Monty Python series two being shot on location with contemporary interviews with the Pythons.
But that aside, the sheer amount of negative material that I have tracked down, including material in the BBC archive that they didn't know they had is remarkable.
One further point as it has been discussed here. Someone said that "interlacing won't make any visual difference". This is true from the standpoint of already having an interlaced version of some sort. The image will look the same (although unrestored) if you watch the older, zoomed in version side by side.
He also said "I defy you to see modern interlacing running at speed. It's a lot easier to see frame dropping or doubling. That is what causes judder."
Whatever he is talking about (and I haven't a clue what he actually means) interlaced video material is a lot smoother in visual appearance than the current 24/25/30p alternatives. Studio content of Monty Python's Flying Circus originated in 50i. That's 50 pictures per second for the studio content. Because I was concerned about how that material might be presented on certain older LCD screens, I did consider creating a 720/50p master, which would have created an entirely progressive master. However, this would have compromised the quality of the large amount of film content I had found. So you have smooth 50i for the UK etc... and extremely good 60i versions for the US, Canada and Japan. I have viewed the check discs of these and you will be hard pressed to tell the difference between the 50i and 60i versions. You would have to play them side by side to see a difference and anyone in the US, Canada or Japan used to the old conversions will see a revelatory upscale in quality.
Los gehts. :)Dear Customer
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