The Avengers

ITV (ended 1969)
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  • show Description
  • "Always keep your bowler on in time of stress, and watch out for diabolical masterminds." [Mrs Peel] The Avengers is one of the most popular and beloved television series of all time. Its outrageous blend of wit and style and its unique mix of the fantasy and spy genres, coupled with the marvellous characters of John Steed and Emma Peel make it one of television's great classics. (Plot summaries are authorised by Paul Cornell, Martin Day & Keith Topping, authors of 'The Avengers Dossier' Copyright: Virgin Books, London: 1998)moreless

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  • Episode Guide
  • S 6 : Ep 33


    Aired 5/21/69

  • S 6 : Ep 32


    Aired 5/14/69

  • S 6 : Ep 31


    Aired 4/30/69

  • S 6 : Ep 30


    Aired 4/23/69

  • S 6 : Ep 29


    Aired 4/16/69

  • Cast & Crew
  • Patrick Macnee

    John Steed

  • Honor Blackman

    Cathy Gale

  • Ian Hendry

    Dr David Keel

  • Diana Rigg

    Mrs Emma Peel

  • Linda Thorson

    Tara King

  • Photos (1)
  • Top Contributor
  • Missybea

    User Score: 837


  • albowlly

    User Score: 1785


  • TheOldBill

    User Score: 165


  • Trivia & Quotes
  • Quotes (138)

    • Steed: So Keels rush in where Steeds and angels fear to tread? Hmm? And supposing the syringe had stuck? Keel: Yeah, well, I suppose you're right. It was a bit melodramatic. I got carried away.

    • Beppi: Can't you read, Mister?! Steed: No, I suffer under the disability of a public school education.

    • Cathy Gale: How would you describe your taste in décor? Cade: Vulgar. Cathy Gale: I see you're a frank straightforward man. Cade: No, I'm cunning and devious.

    • Young: 45 shillings a share. Cathy Gale: The Brigadier offered me 45 and 6, and a much better seduction.

    • (Steed and Mrs Gale are going through the contents of Goodchild's pockets) Steed: Membership cards to three strip clubs and a ticket for a Turkish bath. Obviously a clean-living young man.

    • Mrs Gale: By the way, where'd you get that lipstick? Steed: It was around. Mrs Gale: Is she around too? Steed: Yeah, very round!

    • Steed: Have you spotted anything? Mrs Gale: Apart from the play you made for the stewardess, not a thing. Steed: Well, don't relax. Mrs Gale: Oh I won't, I'm far too interested in watching your technique.

    • Mrs Gale: You know, you could have gone to bed and let them take the bag while you were asleep. Steed: And wake up with a knife in my ribs?! It could ruin my health!

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    Notes (67)

    • The Avengers made its debut on British Television with the broadcast of the episode 'Hot Snow'.

    • Patrick Macnee later married Catherine Woodville, who played Peggy, in 1965.

    • In this episode Doctor David Keel's fiancee Peggy is murdered, which sparks his desire to combat crime.

    • The first third of this episode exists - up to the end of Act 1 and the first commercial break. The only complete episodes left from the first series are The Frighteners and The Girl On The Trapeze.

    • The makers of The Avengers wanted Steed to carry a gun. Patrick Macnee refused because he had seen so many friends die in World War II and never wanted to touch a gun again. When asked what he thought Steed should carry, Macnee replied, 'An umbrella'. So Steed carries an umbrella with a concealed sword in it and it is left to his sidekicks to deal with guns.

    • In series one, Doctor David Keel is the main character and Steed is his sidekick. The show also has a more realistic (but much less fun!) feel to it.

    • All known copies of this episode of the Avengers have been destroyed. The only episodes left from the first series are The Frighteners and The Girl On The Trapeze.

    • All known copies of this episode of the Avengers have been destroyed. The only episodes left from the first series are The Frighteners and The Girl On The Trapeze.

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    Trivia (97)

    • Tim Brinton, who plays the television interviewer in this episode, was an actual television interviewer and newsreader of that time. He was working for ITN.

    • This episode was later rewritten as 'The Fifty Thousand Pound Breakfast' in the Diana Rigg series.

    • This episode teams Patrick Macnee and Patrick Magee, two very dissimilar actors who were nonetheless often confused with each other because of their similar names. In his autobiography, Patrick Macnee claims that he was once fulsomely praised by Laurence Olivier, who had mistaken him for Magee, and also that, during the week of Magee's death in 1982, he had to reassure many people offering his family condolences that he, at least, was still alive.

    • The sexton in the village church is played by Jackie Pallo, a well-known wrestler in the early 1960s and minor television personality. During his fight scene with Honor Blackman, his fall into an open grave went wrong and he was briefly knocked out - for real.

    • Zalenko says that there hasn't been a successful political assassination in Britain since 1812.


      This was in reference to the assassination of British Prime Minister Spencer Percival that year.

    • Patrick Newell, who guest stars as Smallwood in this episode, became a season regular when he played the character of Mother in the final series.

    • The closing sequence of this episode saw Steed and Mrs. Peel departing into the sunset on a moped . This style of conclusion was to be used throughout the series however a different mode of transport was used each time.

    • The tag line used at the end of opening credits: ' In which Steed finds a town full of ghosts and Emma gets into a harness.'

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    Allusions (19)

    • Steed:"The butcher, the baker, the candlestick maker..."
      Steed makes a reference to a famous nursery rhyme.

    • Steed: "Curiouser and curiouser"
      Steed is quoting from Lewis Carroll's famous novel.

    • In this episode Mrs. Peel, the heroine, is tied to the train tracks and faces impending death by an oncoming miniature train. Steed, the hero, races to her rescue. The sequence is accompanied by dramatic piano music and contains no dialogue. This melodramatic action scene is a pastiche of the silent movie era.

    • Mrs. Peel stays in the Flora Macdonald Room. whilst at Castle De’ath. Flora was an 18th Century heroine who saved Prince Charles Edward Stuart after his defeat at the Battle of Culloden in 1746. She dressed him as her maid and they travelled from her home in the Hebrides to France.

    • When Angus makes his entrance by shooting the wall with a bow and arrow, Mrs. Peel retorts, 'What's your next trick, splitting an apple on this gentleman's head?' This is a reference to the talents of 14th Century Swiss archer Wilhelm Tell who shot an apple that was placed on his son's head.

    • When Steed is nearly speared by an arrow, he says, I nearly joined King Harold, 1066 and all that. This is a reference to King Harold the Second of England who was killed, purportedly by an arrow in the eye, at the Battle of Hastings.

    • Mrs. Peel tells Steed that his ideal wife would have to be a mixture of Lucrezia Borgia and Joan of Ark. Borgia was the 15th Century Duchess whose 3rd husband was murdered by her brother, with whom she allegedly committed incest. Joan of Ark was the 15th Century military leader who convinced Charles the 7th that she had a divine mission. She was burned for heresy and canonised in 1920.

    • Throughout the episode there are numerous references to Dickens: The guillotine cigar cutter is a reference to A Tale of Two Cities. When Steed receives the box containing his fancy dress costume Mrs. Peel comments, I hope it’s little Nell. This is an allusion to the character from The Old Curiosity Shop. The Hall of Great Expectations is a mock up of Mrs. Havisham’s cobwebbed covered shrine. The Mirror Room is a reference to Dickens’ personal obsession with mirrors.

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  • Fan Reviews (16)
  • Classic TV

    By cowboy2831, Aug 08, 2014

  • 2 words: We're Needed

    By DojinFan_2K, Jul 17, 2010

  • Oh how I miss this!

    By WantToBelieve, May 31, 2007

  • "Tongue-in-cheek" Spy Classic

    By revbucky, Jul 14, 2008

  • This stylish British TV show was the first U.K. show to be broadcast by one of the Big Three Networks(ABC)in the states.The only other was 'The Prisoner'-a summer replacement series in 1968 on CBS.Normally U.K. shows were only seen on local PBS channels.

    By rickjeep154, Nov 11, 2007