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directed by Ronald Chesney, Ronald Wolfe
UK 1963


One of the BBC's earliest domestic sitcoms, MEET THE WIFE details the domestic strife of plumber Freddie (Freddie Frinton) and his haranguing wife Thora (LAST OF THE SUMMER WINE's Dame Thora Hird). A victim of the BBC's practice of wiping and reusing broadcast tape, the series lost all but one of its second series episodes, its entire third series, most of its fourth series, and all but one episode of its fifth series, so it is a little difficult to trace the evolution of the series, but the "Comedy Playhouse" pilot "The Bed" sets the tone of the earlier part of the series with a seriously skewed perspective that finds Thora mercilessly nitpicking the very being of her husband who is admittedly messy, lazy, and oblivious but generally well-meaning. Throughout the series, she accuses him of "showing her up" by being common while she tries to put on airs (although at times she does this to try and score her husband lucrative plumbing contracts). Common domestic squabbles include getting a new bed, vacationing (and Thora's attempts to pack half the house to take with them), Thora's bad back, Freddie's strain (and Thora's attempts to make the house and Freddie presentable for a doctor's visit), looking after the grandchildren, squabbles over going out or eating in, entertaining guests (of assumed higher social status), and so on. Each episode is a three act playlet with Hird and Frinton moving frantically yet masterfully through long takes of sight gags and insults before Thora manages to redeem herself by conveying her genuine affection for her husband whether he has messed up or she has failed to realize his good intentions. While the show may seem especially exaggerated these days with the glut of ill-tempered-wife/moronic-husband sitcoms, MEET THE WIFE became immortalized by The Beatles in a lyric from their song Good Morning, Good Morning.

Eric Cotenas

Theatrical Release: 28 December 1963 - 19 December 1966

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DVD Review: Simply Media - Region 2 - PAL

Big thanks to Eric Cotenas for the Review!

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Simply Media

Region 2 - PAL

Runtime 6:45:16 (4% PAL speedup)

1.33:1 Original Aspect Ratio
Average Bitrate: 5.27 mb/s
PAL 720x576 25.00 f/s

NOTE: The Vertical axis represents the bits transferred per second. The Horizontal is the time in minutes.


Audio English Dolby Digital 2.0 mono
Subtitles English HoH, none
Features Release Information:
Studio: Simply Media

Aspect Ratio:
Fullscreen - 1.33:1

Edition Details:
� Disc One:
� Series 1 Episodes (with 'Play All' option; 1:44:04):
� - Pilot plus episodes 1.1-1.3

� Disc Two:
� Series 1 Episodes (with 'Play All' option; 1:38:48):
� - Episodes 1.4-1.7

� Disc Three:
� Series 2-5 Surviving Episodes (with 'Play All' option; 3:22:24):
� - Episodes 2.2, 4.1, 4.2, 4.4, 4.5, 4.6, and 5.7

DVD Release Date: 24 October 24th, 2016






Simply Media collects the surviving fourteen episodes (including the Comedy Playhouse pilot) on two single-layer DVDs and one dual-layer. The video quality is as expected, with a soft image, visible scan lines, and a couple instances tape master damage. The Dolby Digital 2.0 mono audio is more consistent but the optional English HoH subtitles have quite a few transcription errors (somehow "Jean Metcalfe" becomes "Jean McGuffin"). There are no extras. Although the publicity materials and the cover at Amazon state that this is a four-disc set, it is actually a three-disc set (with the actual retail cover replacing the 4 with a 3).

  - Eric Cotenas


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Simply Media

Region 2 - PAL


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