Series 3 - Episode 15
The Gilded Cage
by Roger Marshall
Designed by Robert Macgowan
Directed by Bill Bain
(Production Number : 3614)
25th October, 63
Expected: 51'25" excluding commercial breaks
Actual running time with bumpers: 52'20"
The bumpers between the acts are generally 10 seconds from fade in to the "End of Act" bumper to the end of audio before the commercial, a 10 second still without audio, then cut to the next act bumper. This would play with the theme for around 10 seconds. Accordingly, with the episodes being in 3 acts, the running time of the action is approximately a minute less than listed above, minus the opening and closing credits (normally 0'16", with a 2" fade, and anywhere from 0'41" to 1'20", hard cut or 1" fade or mix, respectively).
|London||9th November 1963|
|Sydney||29th December 1964|
|Melbourne||10th January 1966|
|J.P. Spagge||Cathy||.25 Berretta (off camera, and faked)|
|Steed||Manley||Sniper rifle (Steed pretends to have been hit, but he was behind bulletproof glass)|
The opening credits feature a cut under the titles, from the gold bars to a CU of Spagge.
- 4:52 - why is the butler's bell so high on the wall if Spagge is in a wheelchair?
- Overtones of "Goldfinger" all over this episode, with Mrs Gale planning a bullion robbery - they even mention Fort Knox (5:47) explicitly!
- 5:50 - A gold bar weighs 400 troy pounds, and is 6¾"x3½"x1¾", and valued at £5,000 - Fort Knox has 800,000 of them (well, all of these details were correct at the time of filming anyway). Furthermore, silver was 9/3 an ounce (the highest since 1920), while gold was £12/10/- an ounce.
- 7:23 - Steed says, "Remember the Boomfontein diamond robbery?" and Cathy, smarting from his comment about Spagge being before her time, replies, "Oh yes... Granny used to talk about it."
- 8:28 - Fleming sums up Steed:
"The bowler, custom made Hemmings- St Paul- St James-?, beautifully blocked; not a penny under 10 guineas. The umbrella, Bolton & Son '63 model, slightly weighted handle, perfect balance; just right for a man of his height. And the suit! It's a dream. - Cut by an artist, possibly Smith Brothers, definitely Saville Row, 65 guineas 75."
Spagge: "Was he carrying a gun?"
Fleming: "A gun? In a suit like that he couldn't have carried another fountain pen."
Spagge: "Get on."
Fleming: "The shirt - south sea silk, made to measure, 10 guineas. Impeccably cut. The cuff links, Cavershon crystal - exquisite!"
Spagge interjects: "Fine with me, I've lost a button!"
Fleming: "Very good, sir. Charcoal grey silk hose; shoes, hand made teal St James, slightly antiqued, polished like mahogany, uppers and ways. Significant that!"
Spagge: "What of?"
Fleming: "Excellent valet service. It's a - the Sergeant miniature in the hall, he recognised it!"
Spagge: "And that's good is it?"
Fleming: "Good? it's excellent - a gentleman of obvious quality."
Spagge: "Shut up! I want to know about the man, not about the tailor's dummy!"
Fleming: "If I might say so sir, a more fitting companion than some of our more recent acquaintances."
Spagge: "I do believe you're a snob, Fleming."
Fleming: "Naturally, sir; that's what I'm paid for."
- 9:48 - there's a second of footage of the middle of Steed's flat halfway through Spagge telling Fleming what he wants to eat; the vision mixer switched to the wrong channel, and was supposed to switch to the VTR of the venus fly trap, which we next see.
- 11:13 - Manley asks, "Mrs Catherine Gale of 14 Primrose Hill?"
- 17:28 - Cathy detects hope - "According to your faith be done to you" says the Padre, then says Matthew 9. She corrects him, saying, "Mark" and he acquiesces. When he starts asking about Steed, she plays along and feeds him the lines he expects to hear.
- 20:55 - regular The Avengers prop, the cast iron spiral staircase, makes one of many appearances
- 33:50 - it's a great set, but we KNOW there's no rooftop right outside Steed's windows, definitely not with flashing illuminated letters!
- 41:38 - When Benham presses the intercom button in the vault, the entire thing falls to the floor.
- 42:58 - Westwood can't steer the trolley at all and stuggles to get down the perfectly straight corridor
- 44:55 - There's a spot on the camera lens at top right in the two-up of Cathy & Abe
- They saved an actor's fee by only having Inspector Grant as an unheard telephone caller, or just mentioned in conversation.
- Martin Friend (Hammond) returns two episodes later as the amiable George in The White Elephant, while Douglas Cummings returns four episodes later as Murdo in The Wringer.
- Katie the Great Dane, last seen in Death Of A Batman, returns in this episode, and whimpers (34:30) when Steed is 'shot' by Manley.