The Tony Hancock series produced by ATV in the 1960s starring the hugely-popular, but troubled, comedian, is to be released as a limited edition three-disc DVD set by TV Brain in July – and is available for pre-order now.
Recovered from original film reels from the late Roger Hancock’s estate, this DVD release is a limited edition, taken from new film transfers, that includes plenty of extra material, and is available for pre-order now on the Kaleidoscope website here.
Hancock – The ATV Series, a limited DVD release, available exclusively from TV Brain until 1st October 2022, features an extra disc of extras which includes commercials featuring Tony Hancock, a Photo Gallery, an extensive booklet, and other material not yet announced.
This ITV series is often forgotten, produced by ATV – now ITV after Tony Hancock left the BBC in 1961 to pursue a career on the big screen, which foundered after The Punch and Judy Man failed to achieve either commercial or critical success.
Hancock returned to his sitcom roots with this series for ATV, titled, simply Hancock, written by Godfrey Harrison, which should not to be confused with his final BBC series of the same name.
“The legendary lad himself stars in this lesser known series, and we can all appreciate seeing more Hancock in better quality than ever before,” enthuses Tony Hancock Appreciation Society Tim Elms.
While better known for his work for the BBC, comedian Tony Hancock’s first TV series proper was not Hancock’s Half Hour, but for its commercial rival of the day, ATV, launched in April 1956, written by Eric Sykes, with Larry Stephens also collaborating on some of the episodes.
Within a month of the end of the first series, the first Hancock’s Half Hour series started on BBC TV. Although a second ATV series followed in November the same year, Hancock’s Half Hour was Tony’s principal TV output throughout the rest of the 1950s.
Kaleidoscope previously released a separate DVD featuring the first series of the 1956 ITV series The Tony Hancock Show, which includes small book about the ITV series written by Martin Gibbons.
Tony Hancock is to be the focus of a new graphic novel, The Lad Himself, created by writer Stephen Walsh and drawn by Keith Page, currently in preparation by B7 Comics for release later this year.
• Hancock – The ATV Series will be released on 15th July 2022, price £32.99 plus shipping, and can be- pre-ordered here | First 200 copies ordered contain exclusive two postcards | Exclusive on TV Brain until 1st October 2022
This article has been updated after mistakenly conflating the 1950s and 1960s series. Thanks to David Brunt for useful notes!