The Avengers (TV Series 1961–1969) – IMDb

part ONE : THE early YEARS ( 61-64 )

When most people think of THE AVENGERS, they much think of the Emma Peel episodes and tend to ignore the magic trick that the entire series is. What began as a brassy weekly live-broadcast B & W thriller managed to become a major color series with quite gamey production values and besides the first british television indicate ever to be exported to the US.

THE AVENGERS began in 1961, as an attempt to cash in ABC ‘s former checkup thriller POLICE SURGEON. The former stared Ian Hendry who became one of the biggest television stars of the time. The show failed to be a hit however. So Hendry and his co-star Ingrid Hafner were called in to do a refilling called THE AVENGERS. The weekly prove would pair up the widowed Dr. Keel ( Hendry ) with charming confidential agentive role John Steed ( Patrick McNee ) as they hunted down criminals and demonic masterminds while walking on the noir-like overcharge London streets wearing raincoats. Hafner starred in some episodes as harbor Carol. only two of these episodes are known to exist, and they have been rarely seen. After many videotaped episodes, the show became a score and Hendry decided it was a arrant time to start a movie career. He quit the show and so did Hafner. This left co-star McNee all by himself.

The second base temper started in 1962 and McNee was paired up with Dr. King ( Jon Rollason ), a irregular refilling. After shooting left-over season one script, King was dropped and Julie Stevens as jazz singer Venus Smith was brought in to be Steed ‘s new female collaborator. A bad one by the manner. not only was Stevens a young unexperienced actress, but the character itself was a manipulative innocent adolescent that would constantly become the damsel in distress and have to be saved during the climax. Weak material here. however, the writers decided to pair Steed up with a unlike kind of female spouse. One that would be written as a male quality on the handwriting, and play it like a man. And so was born television ‘s first true autonomous charwoman : Mrs. Catherine Gale. Played to perfection by Honor Blackman, the high-tempered Cathy would constantly have “ battle of the sexes ” arguments with Steed, hit him with hideous answers and punchlines, ( “ good morning Cathy, what ‘s for breakfast ? ” “ Cook it and see ! ” ) and always try to erase his sexist side. besides noteworthy were Cathy ‘s leather catsuits that launched an integral fashion in England, arsenic well as her weekly judo fights with male thugs. The many Cathy Gale episodes have remained in obscurity during the years for the fact that they were videotaped on humble production values and transfered into inadequate prints with lackluster sound. This makes them about unwatchable. And the bad guest acting and all the technical bloopers that were never fixed during editing did n’t help. But all the purists who try to avoid these episodes are actually missing a great load of fun. If you overlook all the negative elements, you are left with entertaining stories that constantly surprise you with all the wit, poison, and wit from McNee and Blackman. You would besides be surprised at how ranking the material is since rear then the show took itself seriously.

Some episodes speak for themselves : MANDRAKE is a slow-paced but well done suspense with a capital fight fit with Blackman and wrestler Jack Parlo. THE LITTLE WONDERS is a curious episode featuring Lois Maxwell ( a.k.a Miss Moneypenny ) as a disgusting machine-gun shooting evil nun. DRESSED TO KILL is a well done variation of Agatha Christie ‘s Ten Little Indians. THE man WITH TWO SHADOWS was one of the first spy stories to use the double component. And THE CHARMERS is possibly one of the best episodes ever.

It is true that these shows do n’t even come close to the fantastic filmed seasons that would start in 1965 and they do not hold up to today ‘s standards when compared to other shows of the time. But the biggest reason you should go back to watch these episodes is Cathy Gale herself. A fantastic actress ( Blackman ) and a fantastic character, Gale is one of the most important female characters of all clock. She is for sure my favorite out of all of Steed ‘s partners. Long live Cathy Gale !

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