The New Avengers, Series 2 - Episode 8:
K Is For Kill - Part 1: The Tiger Awakes
by Brian Clemens
Directed by Yvon Marie Coulais
Tibet, 1945, Lt. Stanislav of the Red Army is investigating
a lamasery which has caged rabbits - some from 1904!
Two soldiers drag a monk (Tony Then) in - he protests at their
invasion and is bundled away for interrogation about the rabbit
England, 1965, a Red Army soldier bursts into a small Salvation Army Headquarters, mowing down the Major (Kenneth Watson) and his band of good musicians with his machine gun. The soldier staggers off and dies - of old age - his face greying instantly! Steed is called in and shown the Russian by Penrose (Eric Allan); he calls Mrs Peel (Diana Rigg), telling her they may never solve the mystery.
France, 1977, another Red Army soldier (Krishna Clough) spots
some youths driving an old Jeep into a garage and kills them.
Steed calls Mrs Peel and they've both had the same hunch so
Steed takes Purdey and Gambit to investigate.
Colonel Martin (Pierre Vernier) is in Charge of the investigation and says the garage owner claimed to see a Russian soldier kill the hippies. He's astonished to hear Steed's story of 1965, and says the hippies were wearing old army surplus uniforms. The Russian meanwhile has the New Avengers in his rifle sights, but remembers Cpt. Stanislav (Charles Millot), in 1946, ordering them to attack only military targets.
Suddenly, there's mortar fire from the other side of the hill. A troop of Soviets led by Lt. Ivan (Eric Desmaretz) is bombarding a derelict château, but melt into the woods when our heroes arrive.
The Russian ambush them and they're waylaid by the first soldier until Gambit knocks him from his perch with a bit of karate. His papers reveal him to be Pvt Sokolov, Russian Army, born in 1925 - despite looking 22, not 52!
Cpt Vassili (Sylvain Clément) joins his troop with Ivan's, and shows him a map of other nearby targets before a march on Paris. Martin tells Steed that 30 years ago the château was Allied Security HQ - a prime Soviet target. French commandos arrive and the Russians pull back, seeking to avoid direct confrontation.
Jeanine Leparge (Christine Delaroche) inspects the soldier's
body and declares him a virile, muscular man in his twenties.
Gambit flirts with her and arranges a date, then they look back
at the gurney and the man is in his fifties! Meanwhile the
Russians head south...
They attack another château after seeing generals around a table inside. Steed and Purdey arrive just after the Russians fall back and they pursue, Steed intent on capturing Captain Vassili, who Purdey defeats. Back at the second château, Martin inspects the destroyed museum pieces and mannequins while the elderly General Gaspard (Maurice Marsac), the curator, complains about modern warfare and the damage done to the preserved World War II Allied HQ.
Purdey discovers the youthful Vassili is 65, while Gambit and Dr Leparge find their corpse had a radio device implanted in his skull. Steed discovers there was a US airbase near the French village that was attacked, just as there was one near Wentwick - the English village attacked in 1965. Vassili is brought into the château and Gaspard remembers a Vassili he once fenced with, and cut his neck. Sure enough, the scar is there, much to Gapard's astonishment. Vassili loosens his bonds and steals Martin's pistol - he's about to kill Purdey when Gambit shoots him from the doorway. The body ages before them, then more distant gunfire is heard.
At the Kremlin, Colonel Stanislav, now much older, enters the office of Kerov (Sacha Pitoëff), who's admonishing some old soldiers. He's told the satellite that blipped in 1965 has failed again, this time sending a full signal for over twenty minutes, and now France is overrun with Russian troops, all of who will die - Stansilav's father among them. He is sent to Paris to account for those he infiltrated and visits Amabassador Toy (Paul Emile Deiber), who is told about the Tibetan monk's secret.
The commandos have mopped up the Russians and they're enjoying a cognac at the château when Toy calls Steed, warning him World War III may be about to start but rings off before he can explain, and more Russians attack under cover of darkness...