“Just when we thought we’d seen everything that Prisoner Cell Block H has to offer over the last 30 years, the infamous ‘Edna Pearson Story’ is finally ready for release. Over the years, the storyline has become one of the most talked about due to the fact it’s never been seen by the series’ loyal fans!”
“Legal issues in Australia resulted in massive chunks of Edna Pearson’s scenes being cut from the episodes, meaning that the character made no sense at all. Now we’re finally able to fill in the gaps and watch her scenes exactly as they were originally meant to be viewed.”
“For a series which ended filming over twenty years ago, this timely DVD release is a testament to the thousands of fans who have continued to support their favourite Aussie drama series in whatever way they can – and continue to want more!”
Co-founder of the Official Prisoner UK Fansite
Prisoner Cell Block H: The Edna Pearson Story DVD Review
This latest DVD release is certainly one that will get Prisoner fans excited. Decades after the Edna Pearson storyline was censored for legal reason, this is the first chance ever to watch those Prisoner episodes in their entirety and to follow the whole of the poisoning plot.
There’s also the added bonus that these episodes feature the great English actress Vivean Gray, whose other soap characters viewers have long loved to hate – busybody Ida Jessup Pike in The Sullivans and Nell Mangel in Neighbours.
Strangely, for this reviewer, who hadn’t seen these episodes before, I found the Edna Pearson story to be actually the weakest link in the ongoing plots. There are much more interesting stories happening around this time. Marie Winters is plotting with Joan Ferguson to unseat Ann as Governor of Wentworth and there is enough dealing and double dealing to keep you hooked throughout the DVD. Meanwhile, Joan’s evil side is seen alongside her touching relationship with young Shane, whom she has taken into her care. While Myra is on the run on the outside, as she tries to get her daughter off drugs, Judy is struggling to keep things together inside the prison. Bobbie is accused of attempted murder and Meg gets more than she bargained for when Tracey Morris turns up on her doorstep.
Compare all this to the Edna Pearson storyline and you start to wonder what all the fuss was about. Edna is never more than a two dimensional character, her motives are never explored or explained, and the resolution to the story is abrupt and unsatisfying.
That said, for sheer excitement and entertainment these episodes have loads to offer, including a seige and plenty of scenes with Neighbours fan favourites Janet Andrewartha as Reb. And of course, for Prisoner fans everywhere, these complete episodes will give closure over an odd period in the show’s history and allow them to complete fully their DVD episode collection. For those reasons the DVD is worth buying and watching.