The Avengers '63

The Original Avengers
Television was coming of age in 1963 as viewership expanded rapidly in North America and the United Kingdom. The limited capabilities of TV cameras made  high-quality output from scriptwriters and top-notch performances from actors essential to a program's continued success.  Excellent scriptwriting and acting propelled the success of the early British television series, The Avengers. The first volume of this DVD set features three entertaining episodes from 1963. In the first episode, a  group of corrupt undertakers conspire to help wealthy folks avoid taxes by arranging early death and change of identity. The conspirators, dressed in black, arrive in phalanx formation to carry away the next victim. The Undertakers is followed by The Man With Two Shadows. Using the popular early '60s theme of "doubles", this episode features a brainwashed agent with a plan to plant  perfect doubles, including a surgically perfected Steed, in the Ministry of Security. The Nutshell is the suspenseful finale with a twist ending. Who is behind the infiltration of a secret, allegedly impenetrable  underground high-tech government facility?

Patrick Macnee  is the suave John Steed, and Honor Blackman, the brilliant Mrs. Cathy Gale, in this trio of episodes with a total running time of 156 minutes.  Producer John Bryce drew on some fine writing talent and enhanced the suspense with music by Johnny Dankworth.

Copyright: Peter Fokes (2003)
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