'Kingdom: Series Three'
(Stephen Fry, Hermione Norris, Celia Imrie, Karl Davies, et al / 3-Disc DVD / NR / 2010 / BFS Entertainment)
Overview: Stephen Fry (Black Adder, Jeeves & Wooster) returns as Peter Kingdom, a warm-hearted, well-respected solicitor who devotes his career to representing the oddball people in the small Norfolk town of Market Shipborough, England.
DVD Verdict: Fry's character Peter Kingdom is a nice guy. He is a solicitor representing every eccentric who resides in the small Norfolk town of Market Shipborough, England. It is filmed in Norfolk in the East of the England, known as the fens, which is a very flat and a wild a wooly part of England. The beach and water Kingdom loves to walk and jog along is the very cold North Sea. The scenery is gorgeous.
In this third season, we begin at the graveside of his swept-away presumed-drowned bother Simon Kingdom (once played by Dominic Mafham), and straight away we get the joys of watching one of the original cast of 'Last Of The Summer Wine' act, Peter Sallis - as Gloria's senile father, ex-lock keeper Cyril. And, then we get another cult British actress, this time in the shape of June Whitfield, as one half of a mother and son combo on a barge holiday. Peter's luxury, old car gets misplaced, and suddenly I remember where I've seen Hermione Norris (Beatrice Kingdom) before - in 'Wire in the Blood,' and later in 'Spooks.'
Moving on, and episode two's tale is that Farmer Geraldine Merrick suspects vandalism when crop circles appear in her wheatfield and plans to harvest immediately. But widowed ufologist Terry is convinced it is the work of aliens and a site of scientific interest, requesting Peter to stop her. Hearing things from another world through radios, pub quizes that allow the locals to dress funny, and a faux Dr. Who and a real ex-Dr. Who all makes appearances! In episode three, widowed Nicky Laker, a doctor at a research lab which uses animal testing, asks Peter to defend her daughter Donna, who has vandalised the unit to expose it and lose her mother her job. Also, Lyle defeats a greedy developer out to evict a group of nuns - who are a hit in the local pub where they are temporarily housed! And those scenes are the best of the bunch here as the first story drags, sorry. But, come the end of the episode, Lyle has a brand new, bigger office!
In episode four, grumpy but promiscuous judge Jeremy Harding (the wonderful Jack Dee) is sent compromising photographs of himself with a young woman and blames Beatrice. She denies it before exposing him as the father of her daughter, Petra! Yup, it all comes out in the wash in this episode, and after Peter eventually finds the blackmailer, who turns out to be very close to home, the actual ending is very cute! Episode five Lyle goes home to Stockport with his mother to prevent the council from selling off local allotments for a golf course. Lyle's younger twin brothers (played in great giddy-up style by the 'Harry Potter' twins, Oliver and James Phelps) do not help the situation with their 'guerilla gardening' tactics but the discovery of a lady's slipper orchid growing in the allotments does. This episode, save for the final few seconds, is great, lighthearted fare all the way through. CCTV-influenced, the twins' 'guerilla gardening' tactics are brilliant! But, as the episode comes to a close, and at Sidney's wedding reception of all places, Peter suddenly collapses.
The final episode shows Peter leaving the hospital, after having been briefly admitted for tests, but before he can take some time off, he is asked by David Morston, whose older brother Lord Robert, (a mad ex-junkie) to stop him selling off parts of the family estate and its titles - whilst cavorting nude in the fountain and/or shooting at people! I wild and wacky ride this one, for sure, and lots of fun too - especially for Sidney, as he buys one of the Heritage titles himself ... allowing his to walk sheep down the streets of Market Shipborough! Come the episodes end, a love is revealed, a marriage proposal offered, a HUGE family blood line (or lack of) is (finally) exposed, and a feel good ending is brought forth regardless ... albeit all the perfect set up for Season Four! This is a Full Screen presentation (1.33:1) enhanced for 16x9 TVs enhanced for 16x9 TVs.