Blackadder Remastered: The Ultimate Edition
(BBC; US DVD: 20 Oct 2009; UK DVD: 15 Jun 2009)
BlackAdder is comedy done right. Nearly 30 years after its creation, the beloved British series continues to be watched and worshiped, recited and referenced, lauded and, of course, laughed at. Blackadder Remastered: The Ultimate Edition DVD set collects each of the four series and all of the specials in new, digitally restored from the original program masters form on six discs. The set also features new episode commentaries with Rowan Atkinson, Stephen Fry, Ben Elton, Richard Curtis, Tony Robinson, and Tim McInnerny; several new interviews with Rowan Atkinson, Stephen Fry, Hugh Laurie, Richard Curtis, Ben Elton, and Tony Robinson; Footnotes to History, a guide to the real historical figures and events depicted in Black Adder hosted by Tony Robinson; a behind-the-scenes of Black adder Back and Forth featurette entitled Baldrick’s Video Diary and the wonderful 25th Anniversary documentary Black Adder Rides Again. It’s an embarrassment of riches even the Black Adder himself would want to share. Even the packaging is perfect, opening like a beautifully bound and well-worn history book (look closely at the illustration of Baldrick’s family tree on the front leaf; it may explain a few things!). Essentially, if Blackadder is the prime example of how to create and produce a near-perfect comedy—and, that it be—then Blackadder Remastered: The Ultimate Edition is exemplary of the way to make a near-perfect DVD set.