Series 5 - Episode 239 stars
by Brian Clemens
Directed by Robert Asher
Emma marries Steed
Steed becomes a father
|Set Design||4 stars|
Second only to The Hidden Tiger, as far as I'm concerned. There's really nothing to fault with this episode, one of the strongest pieces of television drama ever recorded.
The sleepy hamlet of Little Storping In-The-Swuff has its calm
disrupted by a man coming out of the pub and gunning another
man down. The villagers, however, carry on regardless.
Mrs Peel goes to the village with Croft, an old school friend who has quit the Army and retired to the country. His butler has disappeared, leaving all his objets d'art smashed around his house. Croft disappears, and Emma finds his butler's body, and is then knocked out by an unseen assailant.
When she recovers, she is told she had a car accident, but she notices Paul's watch on the wrist of one of the men in her car. She discovers she has stumbled upon a village of murderers when she finds bodies at the doctor's house, but is captured. After a dunking Emma is forced to ring her 'husband', John, and manages to pass on a message to Steed unbeknownst to the villagers. He turns up in time to rescue her from the local museum and Mrs Peel craftily pelts the villagers into submission.
Mrs Peel has found her knight in shining armour when Steed becomes trapped in the helmet she has just escaped from.
|Citroën DS19 Estate||black||AYR 141B|
|Lotus Elan S3||glacier blue||SJH 499D|
|Vanden Plas 4-litre||black||HOF 800D|
|MGB||light blue||556 FYP|
|Ford Corsair||white||ABH 276B|
|Wolseley 6/99 police car||black||649 CLC|
|Humber Super Snipe||mid grey||-|
|Unknown victim (off screen)||Sunglasses-wearing assassin||Shotgun|
|Forbes||Hubert & Mickle V*||Sickle|
|Samuel Morgan||Frederick Williams||Silenced Pistol|
|Major Paul Croft||Hubert & Mickle? V*||?|
|Unknown man||Trilby-wearing assassin||Tommy gun|
|Unknown man||Unknown killers||Body thrown from passing car (Humber Sceptre, maybe), but probably already dead.|
|Dr Haymes V*||Emma||Spear|
Continuity and trivia
- Avengerland, the village of Little Storping In-The-Swuff is in fact Aldbury, which remains pretty much the same today. It also appeared, under the moniker of "Swingingdale" ("Not very swinging.") in Dead Man's Treasure.
- 4:00 - There's a yellow cast on the picture for the whole scene in Steed's flat - bad lighting or was it not remastered?
- 5:50 & 20.59 - Product placement for Breitling Navitime watches.
- 9:46, 10:19, 18:23, 20:15, etc. -
- 10:00 - Mrs Peel drives Paul to his house they enter from the far end of the village, behind the large triangular road markings (let's call that North). Paul later runs into town (13:05), correctly, from the South and Mrs Peel drives back in later also from the South (26:15), to stop at the honey shop; however, the faked accident has her facing South, just near the honey shop, as if she had entered town from the North, and when Haymes drives her back from the house they come from the North (20:40). (Of course, the locals might know a shortcut that causes this).
- 10:16 - There's another For Sale sign in the village, I assume it's just for show.
- 12:55 - The shot of the "The Happy Ploughman" sign is a cut taken from the opening sequence
- 15:05-15:20 - I just love the scene where the dastardly Frederick Williams is about to shoot Samuel Morgan, but then the librarian, Miss Avril, points to the "SILENCE" sign and he slips a silencer on the end of his pistol.
- 16:25 - There's blood on Forbes' forehead, in contravention of Brian Clemens rules for this series.
- 21:33 - When Mrs Peel gets back into her Lotus after it's been dragged out from under the fence after the supposed accidents, there's not a scratch on it!
- 24:48 - Dr Haymes seems to collect the same vintage car prints as Professor Rushton and Sir George Benstead.
- 26:15 - When Mrs Peel drives in from South it's looks like Diane West is driving; it's definitely not Diana Rigg and probably not Cyd Child.
- 30:20 - An obvious stunt double for Bates, but I havenb't identified him.
- 31:10 - clearly not the back of Colin Blakely's head, it must be a professional helicopter pilot.
- 33:42-33:49 - One of the iron maidens in the museum was also seen in Castle De'ath. The other? I'm sure I've seen it somewhere else as well.
- 34:10 - Are those the stocks from Escape In Time?
- 38:50 - Great intercutting of Cyd Child doing the dunking stunt with mid shots of Diana gasping for breath.
- 39:11 and 40:04 - Despite the great intercutting, two of the mid shots of Diana have her clothes much too dry compared to the rest of the footage.
- 40:44-41:55 - That telephone conversation in full:
(phone rings) STEED: Hello? (faintly) EMMA: John, darling, it's Emma STEED: Mrs, oh, uh, Mrs... EMMA: Don't be silly darling, it's your wife. How's my little Johnsie-wonsie? STEED: Johnsie-wonsie's fine! you sound like you've been soaking up just a little bit too much grape-juice. EMMA: You haven't been out all day? Poor darling, go out and take the children with you. STEED: Children?! &emdash; You're in trouble, aren't you? EMMA: That's right. STEED: Is somebody listening? EMMA: Yes, and I've had an absolutely torturous day. STEED: Ah, would you mind telling me where you are? EMMA: No darling, that would be silly. STEED: Are you in Little Storping? EMMA: Yes, I've had some trouble with my car. I had to drive over to &emdash; HAYMES: Salisbury (quietly) EMMA: Salisbury, I'm calling from there. STEED: That's what they want me to think. EMMA: That's right. Kiss little Alan for me, and Julian, and Gordon and baby Brian. STEED: Can you give me a clue, hint, anything? EMMA: Don't forget that you promised to take them to the museum, you can do that after you've been to the pub. HAYMES: That's enough. (sternly) STEED: The pub and the museum? You want me to meet you in the pub in Little Storping? (Haymes taps Mrs Peel on the shoulder) EMMA: Good-bye. (she hangs up the 'phone) STEED: Mrs Peel?
- 44:30 - Rocky Taylor bursts through door, doubling for Patrick Macnee.
- 46:00 - Rocky returns to double for Patrick in the fight sequence and Les Crawford doubles for John Ronane.
- 46:50 - That's Joe Dunne doubling for Colin Blakely.
- 46:55 - Speaking of Jennny and Maggie coming in - how come they didn't trip over, or even notice, Haymes' body with the spear in the chest?
- 47:40 passim - Mrs Peel is wearing a different helmet in the tag scene to that she wore in the fight sequence.
- Running time: 49'18"
What was in those custard tarts? They're heavy enough to send someone as solid as Banks reeling, and have a similar effect on Mickle. They must have been made by Steed's Aunt Penelope (viz. her rock cakes in Dead Man's Treasure).
- Joseph Grieg is wrongly credited as Joseph Greig.
- There's a whole bunch of people not credited in this one! Mostly just random bodies and killers, but some are quite notable. Anyone know who they are?
'Martin' also played 'Zoric' in The Correct Way to Kill, but wasn't credited for that either. You can also see him driving a Landrover at the beginning of The £50,000 Breakfast - he may be Peter Clay but I'm not sure.
Villager #9 may be Bill Nick, a semi-regular on The Prisoner, Villager #10 also played the man killed by the "Trilby-wearing assassin", strange that he turns up for the dunking several minutes after being shot, and is shot shortly after being one of those pursuing Mrs Peel through the village.