Unfortunately, the full release of Prisoner has been not without cuts. There have been small cuts made to many scenes, mainly due to tape damage (however minor). While this list includes cuts that we can live with just for a record of deleted scenes, it also includes cuts to important scenes and even a whole storyline.

Listed below are some of the cuts that have been found, and what we have been able to make out as the possible reasons behind them. Very small cuts, such as heads leaving shots and "clean-up" cuts of less than a second like quick zooms being edited out, are not included.

Your help is needed in making this list more complete. If you spot an edit (whether it be a shot of outside the prison or an empty corridor that looks out of place) or you remember a scene that is supposed to be there but isn't, please let me know by filling in the details in the form at the bottom of this page.

Episode
Time within the episode on the DVD
Description of missing footage Possible reason
Episode 53
6:43
Part of Lizzy Birdsworth yakking in the laundry about what ol' Fletch wanted with Monica Ferguson, during police inquiries into Bella Albrecht's death  More details.... Serious vision dropout occurs at this point. This was shown in the version broadcast on Sweden's TV4, but was cut from Channel 5 in the UK.
Episode 67
5:14
A large portion of the footage of Alice Hemmings and Doreen talking in the garden on the grounds of Wentworth has been lost. More details.... Unknown — no signs of damage found in TV broadcast versions
Episode 69
15:06
Footage is doctored, including outside shot of the prison, and bells ringing, with "cutting and pasting" done to a couple of lines. No such bell ringing or outside shot and no apparent damage to the version broadcast on C5 (1998). More details..... Unknown — no signs of damage found in TV broadcast versions
Episode 71
37:46
This scene starts off on the DVD version with Greg answering Meg's question about Roslyn being kept in the hospital over night. The missing part shows Greg opens the sickbay door and escorting Roslyn out when Meg arrives.
Greg: "Come along now"
Meg: "You don't think she should be kept in hospital over night"
Tape damage?? (unconfirmed)
Episode 83
straight after recap
1 minute and 16 seconds of footage were missing. More details..... Unknown. This was in the previous master source supplied to Shock by Fremantle. According to OTI, this was due to "severe tape damage". This cut has now been rectified and the missing footage has been restored.

Episode 101

(more details)

22:33

Lizzy Birdsworth at the grog shop

Unknown — no signs of damage found in TV broadcast versions (of the grog shop and police car scenes) but was there
23:25
Birdsworth being driven in a police car. Slight tape damage??
35:43
Officers looking for Birdsworth around the prison Significant signs of apparent tape damage (vision dropouts and picture instability) to the original
39:00
Birdsworth belittling Kevin. Possible significant tape damage
Episode 102
?
The original scene continues with Tony's girlfriend entering the room and telling Paul that Tony thinks he don't love him, and the next scene sees a outside shot of Wentworth with the camera zooming out to a shot of a fence and some roses, and the scene continues on with Bea and Pat talking about Vera in the steam press. Tape damage??? (unconfirmed)
Episode 103
31:26
Scene where Paul Reid puts the proposal to have a playgroup to Mrs Davidson cut short.  
Episode 114
beginning of episode after mugshots
An outside shot of the Wentworth Detention Centre building in the middle of a scene of Bee, Birdsworth and Doreen in their cell discussing Kerry Vincent looks out of place. No spoken lines missing. Serious vision dropout.
Episode 122

24:25

Very minor cut to a scene in the laundry where Bee tells the women to behave themselves

 
27:11
6 seconds cut from a conversation between Birdsworth and Paul Reid.  
Episode 125
35:51

8 seconds cut from a Tim and Gail Summers scene. More details....

 
?
Birdsworth cigarette scene in the Recroom.
Episode 128 35:11 One tiny cut trimming off the beginning of Paul Reid's first line in the scene .  
Episode 131 39:24 One tiny cut trimming off a couple of words Kay White said in the factory (indicated here in red): Meg: "Is everything alright?" Kay: "Yes fine. Ah look Mrs Jackson we're in the middle of a stocktake so I'll be popping in and out all day...."  
Episode 143 45:29 2 seconds cut from scene where Tracy is having a conversation with Kathleen Leech  
Episode 148
16:28
A few seconds of a scene of inmates in the Recroom playing cards. More details.... Minor, barely visible glitches in the picture
31:12
One or 2 words lost when Bee greets Tracy (indicated here in red): Tracy: "Bee" Bee: "You rang?" Tracey: "I thought you always worked in the laundry" Bee: "I do love I do. This is Vera's method of rubbing my nose in it" Serious vision dropout
Episode 158
36:09
Slight trim in between scenes (losing a second) which makes the switch appear faster, but nothing important lost.  
Episode 160
18:32
Scene of Judy walking down the corridor to Tracey's cell trimmed very short Very faint line flashes across the picture
Episode 165
0:00
The very beginning of the recap, released in the previous 'Best Of' boxset, where Meg says to Davo "It will only be for a short time", is missing from the second release.  
Episode 169
3:35
2 seconds trimmed from the beginning of the scene in reception where Birdsworth is taken out in a stretcher in front of Davo and Mr Douglas  

18:40

7 seconds missing from the beginning of a scene showing Syd fixing the TV in the recroom.  
30:03 4 cuts (including 2 cuts chopping out spoken words) to a scene where Doreen talks to her lawyer about the charge pending against her for kidnapping the Latham baby. More details....
Tape damage? (unconfirmed)
Episode 173
42:07
Sandra Hamilton talking to Judy Bryant in her cell (9 seconds lost). More details.... No tape damage in Channel 10 broadcast
Episode 174 1:48 Bee warning the women not to talk to Hamilton as she may be a copper's plant (5 seconds lost). More details.... Minor scratch-like marks in the picture
Episode 182 35:43 3 seconds cut, including a bit out of a scene (marked in red) of Mr Fletcher warning the women not to cause anymore trouble: "....and remember: any trouble out of any of you, and I'll be down on you like a ton of bricks, now get moving" Tape damage? (unconfirmed)
Episode 186
39:20
Meg talking to Baxter's new employer worried she is not going to turn up for work. Tape damage? (unconfirmed)
The cuts listed above refer mainly to my own analysis of Episodes 145–196, as well as cuts made to other episodes found by other Prisoner fans. Episodes shown on Channel 5 in the UK have scenes transposed, and the odd cut here and there due to political censorship, which will be listed here in the future once analysis can be completed on these episodes.
Episode
Time within the episode on the DVD
Description of missing footage
Possible reason
Episode 227
Beginning
A large part of the scene missing from recap that doesn't occur at the end of the previous episode (more details) Unknown
Episode 246
2:20
Outside shot of prison inserted in the middle of a scene in reception where Mr Fletcher is talking to Janet while she is typing, joking that she is writing personal letters on Government time. The shot lasts 7 seconds. Tape damage??? (I have not yet seen TV4 copy)
Episode 327
0:23 (Recap)
The part where the Freak tells Barbra "I'll make your life hell if you don't give them to me so where are they?" Barbra: "They're underneath the locker in the isolation cell". The music in the replaced scene has Night Hawks in it from when this scene occurs in Episode 326 as Tracer plays in the rest of the recapped scene. This edit is not present in the Channel 5 version, or Early Years 'Best Of' boxset version of Episode 327. Unknown — no tape damage was apparent even in the previous DVD release of this episode.
Episode 355
8:10
Shots of the prison inserted? when the Freak asks the fake lesbians whether she'd like to run them a bath. Tape damage??? (I have not yet seen TV4 copy)
Episode 409
12:00
A scene in the laundry, when Colleen arrives to tell Lizzie about getting ready, 2 seconds are missing with the lines of Colleen asking Lizzie when she ever passed up on a day release with Lizzie replying "since now". Shot of the outside of the prison lasting 2 seconds inserted over the scene.
Tape damage? (I have not yet seen any other copy)
Episode 449
1:24
Slow-motion effect slows Alice's fall after Cass belts Alice one, does that cover something up?  
Episode 455
3:00
One of the many, many usually un-noticeable microcuts of a second or less that litter the footage in the DVDs affects a scene in the shower/toilet block where Judy is talking Cass into letting go of Bobbie she is threatening to kill. Judy tries to trick Cass into thinking it's not Bobbie: "This is Sue from Maternity Cass". Tape damage???


Episode 463
(more details)

29:51
Edna Pearson is inducted by Joyce Barry at reception. (1 minute and 58 seconds missing)
Censored due to "legal issues"
36:33
Edna Pearson is introduced to the women in the recroom. (33 seconds missing)
Censored due to "legal issues"
38:08
Recroom: Edna and the other prisoners talking about her innocence and how glad she is that they believe her when she says she is innocent (58 seconds missing)
Censored due to "legal issues"

Episode 464
(more details)
11:16
Dining room: The women don't reckon Edna even looks like a poisoner (39 seconds missing)
Censored due to "legal issues"
20:14
Edna visiting her husband Harry in the garden, supervised by Mr Cruikshank. Harry promises to do all he can with the appeal. (1 minute and 11 seconds missing)
Censored due to "legal issues"

Episode 465
(more details)
2:28
In the dining room between when Judy and Bobbie discuss Marlene and her mum, and when Winter says to Keane that it seems they put Marlene off her tucker. The censor considers the part — where Edna says to Rachel it is not easy in here, and asks her if she is hungry — unsuitable for Australian eyes. (14 seconds missing)
Censored due to "legal issues"
5:54
We are allowed to see Edna in her cell discussing with Rachel about how lucky she is to have Harry, and even mentioning the fact that she was appealing, but the scissors come out after Edna says Harry will move heaven and earth to make sure her appeal was successful, before she has a chance to say she was terribly upset when her first husband died..... What is the appeal about? (41 seconds missing)
Censored due to "legal issues"
11:32
Mrs O'Regan banning Edna from the kitchen because she is in for poisoning (1 minute 19 seconds missing)
Censored due to "legal issues"
12:41
Edna in the Governor's office complaining about Mrs O'Regan banning her from the kitchen and denying she has ever poisoned anyone in her life, then back in the kitchen where Rachel and Marlene seriously doubt Edna could poison anyone, and can't understand why O'Regan kicked her out, then Marlene putting on an act of falling ill. The entire scene of the Governor's office and the kitchen are cut (about 3 minutes and 6 seconds missing, gateslam moved)
Censored due to "legal issues"
20:40
In the recroom, the women listening to the transistor as Edna's husband goes on radio appealing against her conviction of his attempted murder (57 seconds missing)
Censored due to "legal issues"
22:01
Marlene looking at Edna's picture of Harry, and Edna accidentally saying how gullible Harry is, then in a panic asks Marlene whether she just heard what she said, before the gateslam (45 seconds missing)
Censored due to "legal issues"
31:12
Part of a scene outside where Harry visits Edna, discussing the plants in the garden (1 minute and 16 seconds missing)
Censored due to "legal issues"

Episode 466
(more details)
Beginning
Recap of this episode is rearranged, replacing a part containing the missing scene from the previous episode with a new scene featuring Marie Winter from the previous episode.
Censored due to "legal issues"
8:39
Edna telling Marlene she is her own brand of peppermint tea is missing, along with a few seconds of the beginning of the scene where Wally and Reynolds are arguing are also missing. (1 minute and 18 seconds missing)
Censored due to "legal issues".
10:11
Marlene falling ill in the night, and complaining during morning muster (1 minute and 11 seconds missing)
Censored due to "legal issues"
14:21
Winter joking in the laundry about one man's meat being another man's poison (21 seconds missing)
Censored due to "legal issues"
20:54
Edna sneaking rat poison from the storeroom into her pocket (8 seconds missing)
Censored due to "legal issues"
23:25
Edna bringing Marlene som Barley water she says is from Harry and will settle her tummy, also includes the first lines of a scene in the staffroom totally unrelated to the poisoning case (42 seconds missing)
Censored due to "legal issues"

Episode 467
(more details)
17:26
Edna telling Marlene how she knows what it is like to be unjustly imprisoned. Marlene looking for the barley water (1 minute and 27 seconds missing)
Censored due to "legal issues"
20:25
Joyce Barry getting Alice and Frances out of bed, finding them fallen ill (44 seconds missing)
Censored due to "legal issues"
22:27
A small part from the beginning of a scene in the dining room, where the women ask what's up with Alice and Frances. (13 seconds missing)
Censored due to "legal issues"
26:20
Marlene finding a bottle of barley water on the floor (30 seconds missing)
Censored due to "legal issues"
31:07
Marlene exercising in her cell, and telling Edna she has a "ginormous appetite" (about 57 seconds missing)
Censored due to "legal issues"
33:13
Alice and Frances heavying Marlene, accusing her of trying to kill them, then Marlene stopping Bobbie from drinking the barley water she thinks is poisoned (1 minute and 56 seconds missing)
Censored due to "legal issues"
33:58
Judy telling Marlene she doesn't believe Edna would be poisoning anyone (1 minute and 2 seconds missing)
Censored due to "legal issues"
36:07
Marlene accidentally knocking over and losing the evidence, and Judy telling her it's all in her imagination (1 minute and 42 seconds missing)
Censored due to "legal issues"

Episode 468
(more details)
0:33
Marlene's poison water part cut from recap (18 seconds)
Censored due to "legal issues"
32:49
The Governor advising the Freak of her new roles should she become Governor, when she says Edna Pearson's appeal will be heard this afternoon (4 seconds missing)
Censored due to "legal issues"
37:47
Edna poisoning the steak on the barbecue, Ann advising Meg in the staffroom of Edna's conviction being quashed, and Meg telling Edna the good news with the women cheering for her release. (2 minutes and 24 seconds missing)
Censored due to "legal issues"
39:04
The episode should have really ended with Marlene Warren collapsing from being poisoned by Edna's special flavouring on the steak (the final 57 seconds of the episode are missing)
Censored due to "legal issues"

Episode 469
(more details)
Beginning
Recap and mugshot sequence badly messed up, including jumps in incidental music
Censored due to "legal issues"
1:25
Straight after the mugshots, there should be a scene where Marlene Warren is in the infirmary telling Mrs Reynolds that Edna poisoned her (2 minutes and 40 seconds missing)
Censored due to "legal issues"
2:26
Judy telling the Governor Bobbie is innocent, and the women in the recroom watching Edna's release on the TV news and trying to work out ways to prove it was Edna. (2 minutes and 50 seconds missing)
Censored due to "legal issues"
3:49
Rachel saying she has to warn Edna's husband, as Bobbie begs for her innocence. Gateslam was moved from before the first scene at Joan Ferguson's house to after, with another 1 minute and 5 seconds of footage missing here from between the 2 scenes at Joan Ferguson's house.
Censored due to "legal issues"
4:43
Rachel and Judy trying in vain to warn the Governor about Edna and clear Bobbie's name. (55 seconds missing)
Censored due to "legal issues"
7:27
Myra telling Judy about Rachel finding Harry Pearson from the phone book and warning him. (23 seconds missing)
Censored due to "legal issues"
9:26
Marlene trying to get Alice and Frances to stop accusing Bobbie of poisoning them. (55 seconds missing)
Censored due to "legal issues"
12:27 
15 seconds missing from the start of a scene where Rachel says she got in touch with Harry.
Censored due to "legal issues"
14:52
As the prisoners walk through the corridor Rachel tells Myra and Judy (who reckon it's a long shot coming from a prisoner) about getting in touch with Harry. Cut causes a jump in the background music. (16 seconds missing)
Censored due to "legal issues"
24:33
The Freak accusing Meg of using prison time for personal business when she was on the phone explaining something about a garden, and Meg telling the Freak about how Edna knows all about the plants in the garden, including the poisonous ones. Ann going off at Joan for assuming office prematurely, is also missing (2 minutes and 25 seconds)
Censored due to "legal issues"
29:22
Marlene mentioning "that maniac trying to poison her" (9 seconds missing)
Censored due to "legal issues"

Episode 470
(more details)
35:07
A part of the scene in the recroom straight after Judy Bryant tells Myra that Laurie's son's operation has been botched up, and he is condemned to deafness for the rest of his life, before the scene of the Freak's boy playing in the drain in heavy rain. Missing part is when the women watch a news report on the TV about Edna Pearson separating from her husband due to irreconcilable differences. (44 seconds missing)
Censored due to "legal issues"

Episode 471
(more details)
6:15
Part of the discussion in the recroom about the upcoming VJ hearing, where Bobbie is worried about being accused of poisoning (16 seconds missing)
Censored due to "legal issues"
9:21
Part of Bobbie talking to Marlene about the VJ's hearing (24 seconds missing)
Censored due to "legal issues"
28:53
Bobbie is brought before the VJ, and laughs at one point when talking to her. Mrs Reynolds tells Bobbie that the poisoning charge against her has been dropped (22 seconds missing)
Censored due to "legal issues"

Episode 661
???
Spider Simpson being bashed
Censorship of copy when prepared for TV broadcast, uncensored version not found?? (unconfirmed)
Episode 667
Slight cut to a critical moment in a shooting scene in both releases (Volumes 1 and 3 of the 'Best Of' boxsets).
Reason for previous DVD cuts unknown, but suspected to be censorship of the copy when it was prepared for TV broadcast, uncensored version not found?? (unconfirmed)

Thanks to D for the information supplied via the form on this page, for Episodes 102 and 409 .


 

Scenes cut compared to other DVD releases
Episode
Time within the episode on the DVD
Amount and description of footage missing Possible reason
Episode 287
33:15

A line was cut in the previous 'Best Of' (The Early Years) is now uncut in this current full release:

Bryant: "Have you seen Bea's article?"
Quinn: "Oh yeah, looks alright"
Bryant: "Uhuh....well have you read it?"
Quinn: "No I'm waiting for Doreen to come with the bets"
Bryant: "Listen Fay, you can't go moping around here all the time while we do all the rest of the work, waiting for Doreen to seeing how much money she's conned out of everyone"

Unknown
Episode 471
The Edna Pearson footage which was included in the 'Great Escapes' DVD in Volume 2 of the 'Best Of' DVD boxsets was released in full in the United States but was censored in the Australian version. Censored due to legal bullshit in Australia
Episode 667
Slight cut to a critical moment in a shooting scene in both releases (Volumes 1 and 3 of the 'Best Of' boxsets). Reason for previous DVD cuts unknown

Thanks to Derek for clarifying the Edna Pearson situation regarding the Australian and American 'Best Of' DVD releases (471).


Cuts due to tape damage — Val Lehman explains

In explaining the cuts, Val Lehman says (as quoted by an OTI Recroom member) the original tapes are quite old, and have suffered damage because preservation was not a great priority before the series became the success it is today:

"With regard to the Masters held by Fremantle; unfortunately they are quite old now, and let's face it, no one could have predicted the success and demand for the series, so no great lengths were taken to preserve them. Unfortunately any cuts have come about because of corruption of the original, and in some minor cases there are vision drop outs which have to be cleaned up and cut in order for the scene to make sense. and if the original has something missing there is absolutely nothing that can be done about it. I have had to use rough copies of the original to look at for commentary, and believe me the product you are receiving has had an awful lot of work done on it to make it look as good as it does." — Val Lehman, posted 5/3/2007

Another member received a response to his questions — she defends Shock in delivering the best possible product, but the cuts have to be made in order to meet professional standards as demanded by Fremantle:

"The only thing I can promise is: Shock are working their butts off to give you fans the best product possible. They know very well there are Prisoner fans who can almost recite every episode verbatim, and the last thing they want to do is alienate and disappoint them. At first they only take out stuff that is so poor it cannot be viewed, then when they put it back together they have to see if it makes sense, if it doesn't then more has to be removed till it does. It's a very unenviable position for them to be in. Shock has not only to consider the fans who remember what came before, but the viewer who has never seen Prisoner before, they are trying to serve you both. They also have to consider their own reputation and produce a professional quality product that pleases and serves the expectations of Fremantle. Otherwise they will have no hope of attaining permission to use any of their other productions." — Val Lehman, posted 6/3/2007


Gateslam editing

When Prisoner was shown on Channel 10 here in Australia, when there was a commercial break, we saw and heard a gate in the corridor closing, and the title "PRISONER" appearing diagonally across the screen, like it was being stamped on a file. This was left intact in all episodes released on the 'Best Of' DVD boxsets, like how they were shown on Channel 10. However, in the episodes in this current full release of Prisoner, the slamming gate sequence has been trimmed short, and fades out quickly.

Here are 2 examples showing the adcaps as they were before they were trimmed short:

This abrupt trimming seems to happen regardless of what action is taking place. Listed below are the worst cases, where this mindless trimming cuts the action short:

Episode Time of occurrence on DVDs Scene cut short
Episode 86
24:16
Pat O'Connell shovelling dirt into her son David's grave. Interrupts prematurely as sounds of the dirt falling into the hole continuing into the gateslam sequence are heard.
Episode 183
40:09
Margo Gaffney, Wayne and Bazza are being chased by police during the payroll robbery. Sounds of police sirens cut short by this edit.
Episode 278
38:00
Doreen being carted off to solitary after lighting a fire in a cell. Gateslam edit cuts short the sounds of women cheering.
Episode 432
some of its ad breaks
Several occurrences where the gateslam is cut short in the middle of the action as In Terror plays as a snake crawls around the prison.

However, the much-feared gateslam cut that would happen to Episode 195 did not eventuate, and the gateslam at the end of the scene where the women shout at Davo from their cells was saved, believe it or not. The gateslam trimming also seems to be more relaxed starting with the 1984 episodes, when music etc. occurs in that part.


Cut scenes on TV coming out uncut on DVD

On the other side of the coin, the DVDs boast uncut episodes because they were censored on television (with the exception of the Edna Pearson episodes).

Here is a list* of scenes that were cut when broadcast on TV, which have come out uncut on the DVDs:

Episode TV station that broadcast the cut scene Scene cut on television but saved on DVD
Episode 83
Channel 5 (UK)
Alf hitting Meg
Episode 231?
Channel 5 (UK)
Birdsworth using the word "nigger"
Episode 319
Channel 5 (UK)
Sally Dempster preparing the rope before she hangs herself at the end of the episode
Episode 326
Channel 5 (UK)
Bits of footage of Bee and the Freak fighting are reported missing
Episode 600
Granada & Border ITV (UK)
The riot in which Lou Kelly hangs Eve Wilder. Granada and Border ITV (1994) went to the adcap break in the final critical scene, when Lou was just pulling the chair from under Eve. This scene was shown uncut on Central ITV in 1991.

Thanks to Andrew Hardman for the information on Episode 600.

*More will be added here in the future.

Please help!

If you spot any cuts to any DVD version, or find scenes that were cut on TV but uncut on the DVDs, please fill in the form below:

Your name (optional)

Your email
(this field is also optional, and will be kept confidential and only be used so I can get back in touch with you eg. to clarify any details you give here)
Episode number:
 
Brief description of scene in question (I can find details with your help in giving me episode numbers and times as below)
The scene was cut in which version?

The current DVD release of all episodes (what time in episode? )

The "best of" boxsets

TV broadcasts
Name of TV station:

Does there appear to be any tape damage or problems with the picture or sound quality in the uncut version?

Yes

No

Please describe quality dropout:

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