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Old 22nd January 2012, 04:12 PM
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Join Date: Feb 2011
Default Old School or New School

I came into Prisoner late. I think I knew who Rita the Beater was before I knew who Bea was. Only in the last year though I have started at episode 1 and worked my way through most of them....thanks to the Internet. I haven't finished the show yet, but I will, very soon, then I'll start again. I intend to own every episode legitimately, without breaking any laws. I do this because it's worth the price to be able to watch it when I want without worrying the old bill are going to burst through the door.

Bea & Prisoner are synonymous, and rightly so. Without Bea, we wouldn't be were we are today. However, there are other characters that have, since Bea, elevated the show above and beyond what her presence did. Bea was great, but did she beat 'The Freak'? I don't think it does any harm to reveal that no, she didn't......It was a big task, but she wasn't up to it.......whether someone else was....depends on if you've seen every episode
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Old 23rd January 2012, 06:07 AM
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Location: Australia
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I agree- it depends if you watched the whole way through from beginning to end or started later down the track. For me, growing up with Prisoner on TV, Queen Bea equals Prisoner, along with Lizzie, Doreen and Judy. But that's the beauty of the series, each character stands alone, and there was always so many side line stories happening that it was hard to miss old characters too much.
But I have a soft spot for the original top dog, always will
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Old 21st November 2012, 04:42 PM
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Join Date: Nov 2012

I'm the same as you phantom. First episodes I saw were the late night C5 screenings in the late 90s. Had got to the days of Rita when I started watching. I remember my Dad watched late night in the 80s but I was in bed as a kid back then.

Last year I watched 1-400 and realised the significance of Bea. They keys character in it all IMO.
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Old 21st November 2012, 06:03 PM
dis dis is offline
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Location: midlands u.k

hi guyus,just wandering,why no one seems to mention "myra desmond"?
my favourite top dog!
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Old 22nd November 2012, 07:03 PM
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Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: Aberdeen, Scotland

I too prefer Myra as Top dog, I loved Bea but i think 400 episodes were enough, she seemed to have cycles of emotions - hard Bea, soft Bea, vulnerable Bea, quitting top dog Bea, - i think she was at her best when she was on top, and i think the time was right for her to go.

after watch 530 episodes (currently halfway through volume 17) i think i prefer the latter part of the series more. I think its unfortunate that so many good characters like Pixie, Cass, Myra and Sonia were short lived but it makes room for new characters. the old dynamic of Judy, Bea, Lizzie and Doreen was great, but it was time for a change.

- hopefully it continues to be a good run until the end, haven't seen any of these before so its all new... i know that some of my favorite characters wont be back tho, Chrissie, Helen, Marie etc but I'm looking forward to whats next! and i adore Joan, who i know is around til the end!

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Old 22nd November 2012, 08:43 PM
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Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: Wet and windy Manchester, UK

I too preferred the 2nd half of the series although it did go off a little towards the end.

Indeed, I felt that some of the earlier years of the series were actually quite ropey but I suppose it laid the foundation for what was to follow. I also think that some of the early characters, in particular Doreen and Vera, are over rated by many Prisoner fans.

The best years of the show for me were from Joan's arrival in 287 up until Myra's death in the terrorist seige in 552.

I too thought Myra was a better top dog than Bea but it is a closely run thing.

But the Freak was the ultimate character for me and is what made Prisoner into the show it is IMO. I could not imagine the series without her.
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Old 23rd November 2012, 10:53 PM
Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: Aberdeenshire, Scotland, UK.

I think that overall, I prefer the second half of the series. However, the first half is also fantastic. In the first half, I adored Bea, Vera, Powell and Jude but I find Lizzie to be overrated (though I do like the character) and cannot stand fact, I would go as far as to say I hate her and she spoiled the show for me in the first half. I also loved Franky Doyle and really wish her character lasted longer. The arrival of Kate, Sandy and Marie in the mid 200s was a fantastic change in the dynamics for me because although I absolutely love the character of Bea, her constant mood changes were really getting on my nerves. It would have been different watching as it went to air, because these changes wouldn't have occurred quite so close together as they did for me, as a person who watches on a very regular basis (and by regular, I mean a few episodes per night) so these stories happen very close together for me. It went from Bea being in love with Ken Pearce, Bea having amnesia, to Bea having Kidney disease...all so close together that there was a very long time of Bea being all vulnerable and just giving up....I hate Bea when she is like that...but when she is on top, tough form the character is fantastic and remains my equal second place character because of this. But, as a result of her drastic mood shifts, the show was becoming boring....Doreen pisses me off, and Lizzie is simply okay...and I love Jude but I found that it was just really Bea, Judy, Doreen and Lizzie who were the focus and it made it boring for a while...all the best characters were very much just supporting characters, such as Hazel and Margo. So yes, when Sandy, Kate and Marie arrived the show was absolutely fantastic for a was great seeing other strong characters...up until Kate's exit was probably one of my all time favourite eras but if it wasn't for this era in the first half of the series, I would say without a doubt that the latter half was far superior.

However...talking about bad eras...the latter half was not without its boring times...The Barnhurst 5 era was rather disappointing I must say. I do not know if that is because the Myra episodes were so damn fantastic or not, but it really did get dull for a long time...thank goodness for Daphne Graham (yes, I actually LIKED her, lol), Alice Jenkins and Lou Kelly is all I can say, LOL!!

But in general, the later, I absolutely adore the cast from the later half. Lou Kelly, Alice Jenkins, Rita Connors are all very high up on my favourites list (as is Ferguson) and it amazes me that these characters never got the recognition that the Freak and Bea did. Oh well.

I tend to find that many people stop watching where Bea leaves and after watching I think they're crazy, only gets better...PCBH is more than Bea or the Freak, PCBH is a great show built on many great characters and a very large portion of that greatness is in the later episodes.

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