2.17 - Immortal Clay

Rate 'Immortal Clay'

10
0
No votes
9
0
No votes
8
0
No votes
7
0
No votes
6
1
17%
5
2
33%
4
1
17%
3
0
No votes
2
1
17%
1
1
17%
 
Total votes: 6

User avatar
darren
Diabolical Mastermind
Posts: 2114
Joined: Mon Sep 01, 2008 2:31 pm
Location: UK
Has thanked: 38 times
Been thanked: 27 times

2.17 - Immortal Clay

Post by darren »

Written by James Mitchell
Directed by Richmond Harding
Production completed: 10 January 1963

Starring Patrick Macnee and Honor Blackman
User avatar
Frankymole
You Have Just Been Posting (a lot)
Posts: 6625
Joined: Mon Sep 01, 2008 9:33 am
Location: Carmadoc Research Establishment
Has thanked: 368 times
Been thanked: 288 times

Post by Frankymole »

My review:

http://www.theavengers.tv/forever/gale1-16vr.htm#2

What's so bad about this episode that it's often rated one of the worst? It has massive problems, although it has (a few) good points too.

The Avenged?: A minimum of misdirection; Cathy's friend is "only" guilty of manslaughter. That's okay, then?

Diabolical Masterminds?: There's a duo of not-so-super spies from Leipzig: de Groot and his muscle-bound henchman Blomberg. They're nicely played, but don't advance the soapy plot much. James Bree's weak-minded Miller sells out after some unconvincing jealousy over giggly airhead Mara. Mara manages to give quite an excruciating performance, especially when she is caught by Steed burgling de Groot's hotel suite.

The Avengers?: Steed and Cathy's scenes are light and fun, but with no real wit or bite. Steed is recognisably the urbane agent of later seasons. So, Cathy is also an expert (and author) on ceramics, as well as philately and anthropology. A pity we don't see her coach Steed for his undercover role.

Umbrella, Charm and a Bowler Hat?: There are two tiers of acting in this. Allan Marling is a believable and sympathetic figure. Sadly, he is the only person who really has any motivation or involvement, with everyone else either lurking on the fringes awaiting a few scraps of storyline (Paul Eddington) or becoming increasingly hysterical and using what can politely be called "theatre acting" (i.e. exaggerated, and not the minimalist speech and movement needed for close-up work) or less politely known as ham (James Bree). There are some eye-watering "northern English" accent attempts.

Bizarre?: Often the "unbreakable ceramic" is criticised as too mundane a plot hook. Actually, it is explained twice that this material is vital for weapons development (it's frictionless, incredibly hard and perfect for missile nosecones; it's also worth £50,000 and attempted murder). Its case is not helped, though, when One-Ten refers to it proudly as unbreakable "plastic"!

The sets of the pottery workshop are tremendous. Sadly, some of the performances and production gaffes are just unforgivable, even to a generous viewer. John Bryce once said, "A year of hard work goes into making 26 episodes, and if at any time we find it boring, that boredom would quickly show through on the screen." How very true in this case!

On Target? (Score): One bowler out of four, for those who are trying hard to make it work. 2/10.
Last watched: "Esprit de Corps"
User avatar
Rhonda
Epic
Posts: 951
Joined: Tue Jan 19, 2010 11:49 am
Location: A town, UK
Has thanked: 29 times
Been thanked: 49 times

Post by Rhonda »

5 from me for a novel idea and enjoyable scenes.
Ron
Last Watched : Castle de'Ath
User avatar
dissolute
The Ministry
Posts: 3134
Joined: Thu Sep 04, 2008 10:03 pm
Location: Sydney, Australia
Has thanked: 210 times
Been thanked: 220 times
Contact:

Post by dissolute »

One of my readers has pointed out that Steve Plytas has a dry in his second scene discussing figurines and tiles with Cathy and audibly says "f--k". Cathy comes to his rescue by prompting his next line and the scene continues.

Details: https://www.dissolute.com.au/the-avenge ... other.html
Last edited by dissolute on Tue Apr 21, 2020 12:55 am, edited 1 time in total.
Mrs Peel, you're needed!
http://www.dissolute.com.au/the-avengers-tv-series/
Every episode from 1961 to 1977 plus more trivia than you can shake a brolly at.
User avatar
Frankymole
You Have Just Been Posting (a lot)
Posts: 6625
Joined: Mon Sep 01, 2008 9:33 am
Location: Carmadoc Research Establishment
Has thanked: 368 times
Been thanked: 288 times

Post by Frankymole »

Yep!! I see what you mean. It is noticeable especially listening to just the audio without watching the picture. An old actor's trick for "as live" television, which William Hartnell picked up on The Army Game and advised young actors to cultivate: swear audibly if you mess up or dry, then they will have to go again (editing was very expensive and rare, and otherwise usually only done for technical errors). Of course, sometimes they didn't stop anyway! And even in the 1980s and 1990s when editing was routine, the occasional swear creeps through even on programmes kids watch like Dr Who and The Crystal Maze.
Last watched: "Esprit de Corps"
User avatar
darren
Diabolical Mastermind
Posts: 2114
Joined: Mon Sep 01, 2008 2:31 pm
Location: UK
Has thanked: 38 times
Been thanked: 27 times

Post by darren »

When the most memorable scene is a fluff then that doesn't say much for the episode.

Some episodes just don't work.

Who'd have thought the creator of Callan would write such a turgid episode.

A factory isn't a very inspiring location for an Avengers episode.

A good cast but they can't excite things.

I just switch off as it's so un-engaging.

Quite probably the worst Avengers episode for me.

1/10
mousemeat
They Keep Posting about Steed
Posts: 7179
Joined: Thu Sep 04, 2008 11:26 am
Location: Elvis Central, U.S.A.
Has thanked: 105 times
Been thanked: 104 times

Post by mousemeat »

darren wrote:When the most memorable scene is a fluff then that doesn't say much for the episode.

Some episodes just don't work.

Who'd have thought the creator of Callan would write such a turgid episode.

A factory isn't a very inspiring location for an Avengers episode.

A good cast but they can't excite things.

I just switch off as it's so un-engaging.

Quite probably the worst Avengers episode for me.



1/10


I RATE it a big ' 4 '....toothless episode...script and dialogue doesn't work
User avatar
Frankymole
You Have Just Been Posting (a lot)
Posts: 6625
Joined: Mon Sep 01, 2008 9:33 am
Location: Carmadoc Research Establishment
Has thanked: 368 times
Been thanked: 288 times

Post by Frankymole »

I watched this again last night and quite enjoyed it. Gary Watson in particular is impressive (as he always is, in everything, even as stupid a role as he was given in Dr Who portraying the amazing magnetic man) and so is Paul Eddington playing his brother, who is cruelly underused because his character disappears for half the story. I'd watched him in the 1970s sitcom "The Good Life" earlier and the contrast was enjoyable - he's great at drama and comedy, it was a shame he got typecast in comedy in the 70s and 80s.

The costumes are nice with a very glittery waistcoat for Steed and a similarly metallic-threaded leotard for the airhead.

As I said before, the sets are superb.

Even if it's not the best of The Avengers, it was easily better than everything else that's been on 2021 television this week. That it still stands up so well is down to the actors and also writer James Mitchell but then he's been an acknowledged genius for a long time (Callan).
Last edited by Frankymole on Sun Oct 10, 2021 10:33 am, edited 2 times in total.
Last watched: "Esprit de Corps"
User avatar
Frankymole
You Have Just Been Posting (a lot)
Posts: 6625
Joined: Mon Sep 01, 2008 9:33 am
Location: Carmadoc Research Establishment
Has thanked: 368 times
Been thanked: 288 times

Post by Frankymole »

dissolute wrote:One of my readers has pointed out that Steve Plytas has a dry in his second scene discussing figurines and tiles with Cathy and audibly says "f--k". Cathy comes to his rescue by prompting his next line and the scene continues.

Details: https://www.dissolute.com.au/the-avenge ... other.html
The funniest thing is watching Honor's face as she hears the word. She's totally professional and not fazed but there is a hint of a smile in reaction :)
Last watched: "Esprit de Corps"
mousemeat
They Keep Posting about Steed
Posts: 7179
Joined: Thu Sep 04, 2008 11:26 am
Location: Elvis Central, U.S.A.
Has thanked: 105 times
Been thanked: 104 times

Post by mousemeat »

Frankymole wrote:
dissolute wrote:One of my readers has pointed out that Steve Plytas has a dry in his second scene discussing figurines and tiles with Cathy and audibly says "f--k". Cathy comes to his rescue by prompting his next line and the scene continues.

Details: https://www.dissolute.com.au/the-avenge ... other.html
The funniest thing is watching Honor's face as she hears the word. She's totally professional and not fazed but there is a hint of a smile in reaction :)

f-k, that was too funny....and I enjoyed the link dissolute provided...some great info...
Post Reply