Today the seventh and final season of ALL CREATURES GREAT AND SMALL was released on DVD. The set also includes a 1990 Christmas special and a 2004 interview with cast members.
If you're not yet acquainted with this series, it's really a must, one of the classics from the "golden age" of British TV in the '70s and '80s. The show is loosely based on the books of Yorkshire veterinarian James Herriot (Christopher Timothy) and depicts the lives of Herriot, his wife Helen (Carol Drinkwater, later Lynda Bellingham), and his fellow vets Siegfried and Tristan Farnon (Robert Hardy and Peter Davison). It's warm and funny, with wonderfully subtle humor by Robert Hardy, in particular.
The show is also quite educational for young people, as the earliest seasons depict daily life in pre-WWII England -- a world of telephones and typewriters, but without televisions or other more modern conveniences. Watching the show slowly unfold over many hours really brings home what life in that era was like, in a way that movies can't quite fully capture.
I first watched this show as a teenager, and the program holds up wonderfully -- if anything, Hardy and Davison, as the rascally Farnon brothers, seem even funnier now than when I first saw it. The great Hardy, veteran of countless British TV shows -- I particularly liked EDWARD THE KING, in which he played Prince Albert -- is now better known to many as Cornelius Fudge in the HARRY POTTER film series. Davison's roles included stints as the stylish detective CAMPION and one of the many incarnations of DR. WHO.
There is an excellent entry at Wikipedia explaining the show's somewhat confusing production history. It first aired in England from 1978 to 1980. Specials aired in England on Christmas in 1983 and 1985, and then the series was revived for four more years beginning in 1988 -- unfortunately with a new actress as Helen Herriot. (Carol Drinkwater, the first Helen, has gone on to a second career as a writer chronicling life in Provence.)
The entire series was also released today -- yours from Amazon for $296.49. :)
I highly recommend this series as outstanding family viewing.