This month, we go back to Richard and Brendan’s first love — 1960s spy-fi classic The Avengers. Brendan has taken up knitting, James is achieving better living through self-help books, Nathan is wondering why Graeme Garden left his computer here, and Richard is relaxing in a leotard and a giant birdcage. Watch out, everyone: it’s The Girl from Auntie.
This month, we head back in time to 1965. While James Bond is in the Bahamas enjoying some painfully slow underwater harpoon fights, Harry Palmer (Michael Caine) is having a much more prosaic time spying for the Ministry of Defence, trying to locate a kidnapped scientist. That is, until the psychedelia kicks in.
This month, we’re watching The Persuaders! Season 1 Episode 17, Five Miles to Midnight, in which TV’s Roger Moore and sometime lady saxophonist Tony Curtis team up with Joan Collins to smuggle some guy out of Italy, accompanied by a series of excellent jokes written by Terry Nation.
And in the process, we answer the age-old question, “What did Tony Curtis call Joan Collins during the production that got her so annoyed?” Over and over again, I’m afraid.
This month, we’re watching the camp 1966 spy-fi classic Modesty Blaise, starring a very attractive Italian lady, Dirk Bogarde and Bernice off Priscilla, Queen of the Desert. There’s diamond smuggling, spycraft and racist comedy Arabs, but it’s mostly all there to get in the way of the lovely location work in Amsterdam and Italy and the upsettingly psychedelic wallpaper.
This month, we’re watching The Prisoner (1967), more specifically its weird antepenultimate episode The Girl Who Was Death. So while Nathan puts the children to bed, James does some ball-tampering, Brendan drives around on the ceiling, and Richard enters a deadly alliance with the butcher, the baker and the candlestick maker. No, we don’t know what’s going on either.
This month, we head back to the earliest days of Rogertainment with the very first episode of The Saint (1961), in which Roger Moore teams up with a future Bond girl, the glittering Shirley Eaton, to thwart a serial wife-killer who will one day control every computer in the galaxy. Or something. It’s all a bit confusing really.
This month, we commemorate the death of Sean Connery by revisiting the first nail in the coffin of his movie career, the 1998 film The Avengers, starring Ralph Fiennes and Uma Thurman as crude robot replicas of John Steed and Mrs Peel, who go up against the wet sporran of Connery’s single most villainous role, Sir August de Wynter — a man who selflessly tries to provide the population of Great Britain with something interesting to make small talk about.