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Open All Hours is a 1970's British comedy that is set in a Corner shop. I was brought up by a father who loved Ronnie Barker and British comedy therefore I have watched many of the episodes of the show with had tears of laughter in my eyes. Ronnie Barker famously played Arkwright the shop keeper. Other important characters included Granville the delivery boy and Nurse Gladys.
I was bought the Open all Hours jigsaw a few years ago as it brings together my love of puzzles and classic comedy.
The jigsaw retails at around £9.99. For this price you get two 500 piece jigsaws.
The two jigsaws are of paintings by Tevor Mitchell and have a vintage nostalgic feel. The one set inside the shop has a warm feel to it as customers are browsing the wares in the famous store. The colours are soft but there is quite a lot going on and it is an interesting picture. There is female and a male behind the counter who I image are representations of Arkwright and Nurse Gladys, alothugh they do not look much like the television characters. Nonetheless, it is a nice picture. There are 500 pieces and it measures around 50 cm by 30 cm.
The other puzzle is of a scene from outside the store. Again it is a painting by Trevor Mitchell and has the same nostalgic feel to it. Featured in this picture is Granville on his pedal cycle and the majestic shop frontage with all the wares displayed outside. There is a customer coming out of the store and you can have a sneak peek inside the shop.
The jigsaw pieces are good quality as most Ravensburger puzzles are. The pieces are cut from thick cardboard that is tough and thick. The pieces fit together neatly, almost seamlessly. The images are lacquered on and are shiny and bright.
These jigsaws are good quality and I enjoyed the puzzles, they are not the most challenging but they are good for providing light entertainment. For this reason, I will recommend them to other people. The pictures are a representation of the store, they are not photographs. Therefore there may be some differences in how the characters look. This does not offend me and I rather like the way the artist has captured the feel of the shop.
I am as thoroughly confused now as I was when I first saw the box for the Open All Hours jigsaw. To compound this, I never thought I would find myself Googling images of the iconic Ronnie Barker show, but there you go - life can often surprise you.
Let me reveal the source of my befuddlement: I, like most other consumers faced with this situation, expected to discover that two jigsaws purporting to celebrate Open All Hours would in fact feature scenes from Open All Hours, but this does not entirely appear to be the case. The Ravensburger game contains two jigsaw puzzles, one portraying the inside of Arkwright's famous store, and the other its exterior. But either Granville was employed by two different convenience stores at the same time, or the green shop front featured in one of the jigsaws is not the exterior featured on the television programme. As I recall, the famous store front was painted a pale colour, and was adorned with an array of posters and signs in its windows, yet the puzzle clearly depicts a green frontage and the name 'Sands' above the door. Yet there stands Granville in the foreground. Similarly, the other puzzle in the box shows the inside of the store, and while the same pair of scales is present as a focal feature, there is no sign of Ronnie Barker. In his place is decidedly slimmer gentlemen who looks as bewildered as I feel. He doesn't even have a tache - the cheek! I've no idea who the woman serving is either, but she's certainly not Nurse Gladys. My list of gripes could go on and on. The bottom line is, the images presented on the jigsaws give the impression they were composed by someone who never had much time for gentle 70s comedy programmes.
The images aside, I wasn't very impressed by the quality of the jigsaws either. The pieces were fairly flimsy and the colours appeared muted. Perhaps the one saving grace of this package is that you get two puzzles in one box, and the 500 pieces of which each is comprised is adequate enough to while away an hour or two. You might wish you hadn't bothered when you look upon the completed piece, however. Not one for fans of the show.
2 x 500 Pieces