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Category:    Home > Reviews > Action > Adventure > TV > Saint MegaSet (Full-color shows/A&E DVD Set)

The Saint MegaSet   (Full Color Roger Moore Episodes)


Picture: B-     Sound: C+     Extras: D     Episodes: B



Sir Roger Moore!  Yes, the great Brit is finally getting knighted.  Many cannot believe it finally is happening, with many feeling it is long overdue, but it will finally happen.  Coincidentally, after issuing all his full color appearances as Simon Templar, A&E is issuing The Saint MegaSet, featuring every single color show Moore ever logged form 1966 – 1969.  The series had a long, glorious run and its great to have all 47 color shows on DVD.  The Saint is not a spy, but a crook with a heart of gold who goes globe-trotting, getting involved in adventures for money or personal reasons.  He has a bad reputation, yet also helps certain people in need when he wants to.  He has several ways he gets around, but is most famous for riding around in his ivory white Volvo P1800, a classic sports model from the conservatively designed made.  The shows are as follows, with a # symbol next to the exceptional shows that are either key highlights or outstanding examples of what the series was capable of above their usually higher standards:




The Queen’s Ransom

Interlude in Venice

The Russian Prisoner   [#]

The Reluctant Revolution

The Helpful Pirate

The Convenient Monster

The Angel’s Eye

The Man Who Liked Lions

The Better Mousetrap

Little Girl Lost

Paper Chase

Locate and Destroy

Flight Plan   [#]

Escape Route   [#]




The Persistent Patriots   [#]

The Fast Women   [#]

The Death Game   [#]

The Art Collectors

To Kill A Saint   [#]

The Counterfeit Countess

Simon and Delilah   [#]

Island of Chance

The Gadget Lovers   [#]

A Double in Diamonds   [#]

The Power Artists

When Spring is Spring




The Gadic Collection

The Best Laid Schemes

Invitation to Danger   [#]

Legacy for the Saint

The Desperate Diplomat

The Organisation Man

The Double Take

The Time to Die

The Master Plan

The House on Dragon’s Rock

The Scales of Justice

The Fiction Makers (2 parts, shown in feature film cut)   [#]

The People Importers

Where the Money Is




Vendetta for the Saint (2 parts, credits cut off of part two’s opening)

The Ex-King of Diamonds

The Man who Gambled with Life

Portrait of Brenda

The World Beater


Each show opens with a voice-over reflection by Templar, then the action kicks in.  After a tussle, some other words are exchanged and as son as we hear the words “Simon Templar”, the credits kick in.  There are variations, but that is the formula.  Of course, the show actually began in black and white back in 1962, running four years before the shows in this set.  Some very talented writers, directors and stars made those shows too, but they were more laid-back than the later era.  After years in various movie studio feature films, including work at M-G-M, Moore was finally an international star.  He was almost James Bond, but Sean Connery got that role after a long search.  Moore missed the role in 1968 because he was doing these episodes, then went directly onto The Persuaders (A&E will do all the DVDs of that show too), but became Bond by 1973.


The show was on two networks in the U.S., plus syndication in its long run.  Edwin Astley’s theme song is well known, and Moore himself eventually directed.  After a series of B-movies at RKO Studios, and some films in France based on the character, the TV show finally managed to bring the long running and successful Leslie Charteris book series (45 novels in all) to life.


The full screen image quality on each episode varies, but the better ones have fine color, especially early on when a more complex color system was being used.  The show went to EastmanColor and gained in definition somewhat, but at the expense of color richness.  That change is best explained in my review of Saint Set Five, elsewhere on this site.  At their poorest, somewhat muddy second or third-generation prints were used that look as bad as the notoriously bad rear projection many an ITC series is known for.


All shows have Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono, but at A&E/New Video’s higher 384 kilobits-per-second configuration throughout.  Occasionally, there are sound flaws one expects from prints of this age, but those are few.  There are hardly any extras, except stills and TV trailers for each show corresponding with the DVDs they appear on, and text information (A History of The Saint and both biography & filmography information on Moore) that are repeated to death.  There are no stills of any promo print material, tie-in merchandise or interviews with anyone involved with the show.  It is something for A&E to consider if they ever issue the previous black and white shows.


The fourteen alpha-pak cases are in a nicely illustrated paperboard slidecase, very much in the mode of the previous seven double sets issued of the show.  Either way, you are going to get high-quality packaging that looks good, no matter what route you take.  Moore is underappreciated in what he does here in action, acting, and witty comedy.  This is smart, fun work.  There has never been a show like it before, and will probably never be again.  Moore and the combination of talents created a believable (if sometimes phony-looking) situation the viewer could buy into each week.  Other incarnations of Templar have had to find new approaches, because Moore has this one all to himself.  That is why The Saint is an all-time TV classic and a must for all serious collections.



-   Nicholas Sheffo


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