List of The Avengers episodes
The first four seasons were in black-and-white; the first three were shot on videotape,[clarification needed] with occasional filmed inserts. Beginning with season 4 the series moved to all-film production shot using the single-camera setup style. From season 5 onwards the episodes were in colour.
As of May 2008, all 139 surviving episodes of the series (including the two complete and one partial episode from the first series) have been released on DVD in North America (Region 1).
|Season||Episodes||UK Premiere||UK Finale|
|1||26||7 January 1961||30 December 1961|
|2||26||29 September 1962||23 March 1963|
|3||26||28 September 1963||21 March 1964|
|4||26||2 October 1965||26 March 1966|
|5||24||14 January 1967||18 November 1967|
|6||33||25 September 1968||21 May 1969|
Season 1 (1961)
Note: As of 2011, the only episodes known to still exist in their entirety from the debut season are Girl on the Trapeze (which does not feature John Steed) and The Frighteners. The first 20 minutes of the premiere episode, Hot Snow, have also been rediscovered.
|Episode No.||Original air date (UK)||Episode title||Guest cast||Episode status|
|1-01||7 January 1961||Hot Snow||Catherine Woodville, Philip Stone, Robert James, Godfrey Quigley, Moira Redmond, Murray Melvin, Charles Wade||Only Act 1 (20 minutes) Intact|
|1-02||14 January 1961||Brought to Book||Philip Stone, Robert James, Godfrey Quigley, Neil McCarthy, Charles Morgan, Michael Collins, Clifford Elkin||Missing|
|1-03||21 January 1961||Square Root of Evil||Alex Scott, Michael Robbins, George Murcell, Heron Carvic, John Woodvine||Broadcast live, missing|
|1-04||28 January 1961||Nightmare||Helen Lindsay||Broadcast live, missing|
|1-05||4 February 1961||Crescent Moon||Roger Delgado, Patience Collier, Eric Thompson||Broadcast live, missing|
|1-06||11 February 1961||Girl on the Trapeze (Keel only)||Kenneth J. Warren, David Grey, Edwin Richfield, Ivor Salter||Fully Intact (as a 16 mm telerecording, this episode was originally broadcast live)|
|1-07||18 February 1961||Diamond Cut Diamond||Sandra Dorne||Broadcast live, missing|
|1-08||24 February 1961||The Radioactive Man||George Pravda, Gerald Sim, Christine Pollon, John Gayford, Paul Grist||Broadcast live, missing|
|1-09||4 March 1961||Ashes of Roses||Mark Eden, Edward Dentith, Gordon Rollings||Broadcast live, missing|
|1–10||18 March 1961||Hunt the Man Down||Melissa Stribling, Maurice Good||Missing|
|1–11||1 April 1961||Please Don't Feed the Animals||Tenniel Evans||Missing|
|1–12||15 April 1961||Dance with Death||Caroline Blakiston, Angela Douglas, Geoffrey Palmer, Neil Wilson||Missing|
|1–13||29 April 1961||One for the Mortuary||Frank Gatliff, Dennis Edwards, Peter Madden, Steven Scott||Missing|
|1–14||13 May 1961||The Springers||Brian Murphy, Donald Morley, David Webb||Missing|
|1–15||27 May 1961||The Frighteners||Willoughby Goddard, Stratford Johns, Doris Hare, Neil Wilson, Philip Locke, Godfrey James, Eric Elliott||Fully Intact|
|1–16||10 June 1961||The Yellow Needle||Margaret Whiting, Wolfe Morris, Eric Dodson, Michael Barrington||Missing|
|1–17||24 June 1961||Death on the Slipway||Nyree Dawn Porter, Peter Arne, Frank Thornton, Hamilton Dyce, Gary Watson, Tom Adams||Missing|
|1–18||8 July 1961||Double Danger||Kevin Brennan, Charles Hodgson, Ron Pember||Missing|
|1–19||22 July 1961||Toy Trap||Tony Van Bridge, Brian Jackson, Brandon Brady, Anne Tirard, Mitzi Rogers||Missing|
|1–20||5 August 1961||The Tunnel of Fear||Murray Hayne, Morris Perry||Missing|
|1–21||19 August 1961||The Far Distant Dead (Keel only)||Katharine Blake, Tom Adams, Reed De Rouen, Francis de Wolff||Missing|
|1–22||2 September 1961||Kill the King||Burt Kwouk, Peter Barkworth, Moira Redmond, Patrick Allen, Andy Ho||Missing|
|1–23||9 December 1961||Dead of Winter||John Woodvine, Neil Hallett||Missing|
|1–24||16 December 1961||The Deadly Air||John Stratton, Allan Cuthbertson, Ann Bell, Geoffrey Bayldon, Michael Hawkins, Keith Anderson||Missing|
|1–25||23 December 1961||A Change of Bait||John Bailey, Tim Barrett, Henry Lincoln, Graham Rigby||Missing|
|1–26||30 December 1961||Dragonsfield (Steed only)||Sylva Langova, Alfred Burke, Barbara Shelley, Ronald Leigh-Hunt, Michael Robbins, Eric Dodson, Keith Barron, Morris Perry, Steven Scott||Missing|
Note: Following season 1 a lengthy Equity actor's strike prevented development of the second season, and Ian Hendry decided to depart the show. When the show eventually returned the premise had been considerably retooled, with Macnee moved to the lead role, accompanied by an attractive and highly capable female sidekick, and a much more whimsical tone.
Season 2 (1962–1963)
Cast: Season 2 featured Patrick Macnee as John Steed in all 26 episodes. Either Jon Rollason (as Dr. Martin King) or Julie Stevens (as Venus Smith) accompanied him as noted in the table; all other episodes feature Honor Blackman (as Dr. Cathy Gale).
Season 3 (1963–1964)
NOTE: The episode "Don't Look Behind You" was later re-made for series 5 as "The Joker," "The Charmers" was re-made, again for series 5, as "The Correct Way to Kill," and "Dressed to Kill" was in large part re-made, once again for series 5, as "The Superlative Seven". At the end of the third season Honor Blackman left the series to star in the James Bond movie "Goldfinger".
Season 4 (1965–1966)
Cast: Season 4 starred Patrick Macnee (as John Steed) and Diana Rigg (as Mrs. Emma Peel). It was the last series to be made in Black & White, but also the first series to be shot on film as opposed to videotape.
|Episode No.||Original air date (UK)||Episode title||Plot summary||Guest cast|
|4-01||2 October 1965||The Town of No Return||Steed and Emma visit Little Bazeley by the Sea while on the trail of several murdered agents – and discover more than they bargained for.||Alan MacNaughtan, Terence Alexander, Patrick Newell, Robert Brown, Walter Horsbrugh, Jeremy Burnham, Juliet Harmer|
|4-02||9 October 1965||The Gravediggers||A hospital for railwaymen is exposed as a front for a plot to destroy Britain’s early warning systems.||Ronald Fraser, Paul Massie, Caroline Blakiston, Charles Lamb, Wanda Ventham, Ray Austin, Steven Berkoff, Bryan Mosley, Lloyd Lamble|
|4-03||16 October 1965||The Cybernauts||Industrialists are being killed off with inhuman efficiency by an assassin who is just that – inhuman!||Michael Gough, Frederick Jaeger, Bernard Horsfall, Burt Kwouk, John Hollis, Ronald Leigh-Hunt, Gordon Whiting|
|4-04||23 October 1965||Death at Bargain Prices||The murder of an agent carrying a receipt from a department store leads to the discovery of a terrifying nuclear terrorism plot.||André Morell, T. P. McKenna, Allan Cuthbertson, George Selway, John Cater, Peter Howell|
|4-05||30 October 1965||Castle De'ath||A Scottish castle is the scene for a family feud – and a plot to engineer a fishing crisis.||Gordon Jackson, Robert Urquhart, James Copeland, Jack Lambert, Russell Waters|
|4-06||6 November 1965||The Master Minds||After an apparently respectable politician is caught trying to steal top-secret documents, Steed and Emma discover a plot by renegade intellectuals to steal a nuclear missile.||Patricia Haines, Laurence Hardy, Bernard Archard|
|4-07||13 November 1965||The Murder Market||Steed and Emma pose as eligible singles in order to infiltrate an assassination service posing as a matchmaking agency.||Patrick Cargill, John Woodvine, Edward Underdown, Penelope Keith (uncredited)|
|4-08||20 November 1965||A Surfeit of H2O||After two men are drowned by sudden freak rainstorms, Steed’s attention is drawn to a winery under a suspiciously cloudy sky.||Noel Purcell, Sue Lloyd, Talfryn Thomas, Albert Lieven, Geoffrey Palmer, John Bennett|
|4-09||27 November 1965||The Hour That Never Was||After crashing their car, Steed and Emma visit an airfield and find a baffling mystery of stopped clocks, dead milkmen and a naughty dentist.||Roy Kinnear, Gerald Harper, Dudley Foster, John Bennett|
|4–10||4 December 1965||Dial a Deadly Number||The duo combat malfeasance in the London financial world after businessmen start dropping dead from heart attacks.||Clifford Evans, Jan Holden, Anthony Newlands, John Carson, Peter Bowles, Gerald Sim, Michael Trubshawe, Norman Chappell, John Bailey, Edward Cast|
|4–11||11 December 1965||Man-Eater of Surrey Green||Steed and Emma encounter their most bizarre enemy yet – a carnivorous alien plant with plans for world domination.||Athene Seyler, Derek Farr, Joby Blanshard|
|4–12||18 December 1965||Two's a Crowd||Steed “creates" a double of himself in order to outwit a master Russian spy.||Warren Mitchell, Julian Glover, Wolfe Morris|
|4–13||25 December 1965||Too Many Christmas Trees||A villainous mastermind steal secrets telepathically from agent's brains, killing the subjects in the process - and Steed is next on the list.||Edwin Richfield, Jeanette Sterke, Robert James, Alex Scott|
|4–14||1 January 1966||Silent Dust||Rural villains hold the British government to ransom with a devastating new biological weapon; our heroes join the hunt.||William Franklyn, Isobel Black, Norman Bird, Charles Lloyd-Pack, Aubrey Morris, Jack Watson|
|4–15||8 January 1966||Room Without a View||Steed adopts a disguise in order to investigate a shady hotel tycoon.||Paul Whitsun-Jones, Peter Jeffrey, Richard Bebb, Philip Latham, Peter Arne, Vernon Dobtcheff, Peter Madden|
|4–16||15 January 1966||Small Game for Big Hunters||English tropical jungle harbours pompous professor, mad colonel, war-painted spy, and bioweapon against an African nation.||Bill Fraser, James Villiers, Peter Burton, Peter Thomas, Paul Danquah|
|4–17||22 January 1966||The Girl from AUNTIE||An Emma impersonator and a string of murders puts Steed onto the trail of a villainous art dealer.||Liz Fraser, Alfred Burke, Bernard Cribbins, David Bauer, Sylvia Coleridge, Maurice Browning|
|4–18||29 January 1966||The Thirteenth Hole||Death on a golf course brings Emma into a sand trap, Steed into a tournament, and light upon a spy ring||Patrick Allen, Francis Matthews, Donald Hewlett, Victor Maddern, Richard Marner|
|4–19||5 February 1966||Quick-Quick Slow Death||Spy death leads to investigation of a dance school, unattached bachelors, and a tattoo.||Eunice Gayson, John Woodnutt, Maurice Kaufmann, Graham Armitage, Alan Gerrard, Michael Peake|
|4–20||12 February 1966||The Danger Makers||Several military officers are engaging in reckless daredevil antics – all part of an unscrupulous psychiatrist’s plan to steal the Crown jewels.||Nigel Davenport, Douglas Wilmer, Fabia Drake, Moray Watson, Adrian Ropes, Richard Coleman|
|4–21||19 February 1966||A Touch of Brimstone||An eccentric band of libertines who commit deadly practical jokes is revealed to have much bigger plans in mind.||Peter Wyngarde, Carol Cleveland, Colin Jeavons, Jeremy Young, Robert Cawdron, Steve Plytas, Alf Joint|
|4–22||26 February 1966||What the Butler Saw||Steed enlists at a butler training school to find out who is selling military secrets to the enemy.||Denis Quilley, John Le Mesurier, Thorley Walters|
|4–23||5 March 1966||The House That Jack Built||Emma is lured to a house owned by a hitherto unheard-of uncle – and finds herself trapped in a maze, the target of a former employee’s mind-bending revenge scheme.....||Michael Goodliffe, Griffith Davies, Michael Wynne, Keith Pyott|
|4–24||12 March 1966||A Sense of History||Steed and Emma investigate an assassination plot among a university's boisterously merry men.||Nigel Stock, Patrick Mower, Jacqueline Pearce, John Barron, John Ringham, John Glyn-Jones, Robin Phillips|
|4–25||19 March 1966||How to Succeed ... at Murder||A group of man-hating secretaries are targeting key businessmen for death – but who exactly are they taking their orders from?||Sarah Lawson, Angela Browne, Jerome Willis, Christopher Benjamin, Kevin Brennan, David Garth|
|4–26||26 March 1966||Honey for the Prince||Genie brings Steed and Emma to fantasy world of cricket, harem dance, and creative assassination.||Ron Moody, Zia Mohyeddin, Jon Laurimore, Peter Diamond, George Pastell, Reg Pritchard|
Starting with this season, the production budget went up considerably, location shooting was used extensively. With an eye toward getting the series shown on US television the show was now filmed instead of taped, allowing multiple camera angles. This brought The Avengers in line with other contemporary ITV series such as Danger Man (airing in the US as Secret Agent) and The Saint.
Actress Elizabeth Shepherd was originally cast as Emma Peel; one complete episode, "The Town of No Return," was filmed. Partway through filming of the second episode, "The Murder Market," the producers closed down production in order to recast the part. The Shepherd footage has never been televised and is believed to be lost. Canal+ claimed they had the original footage, then later retracted this claim. Publicity photos of Shepherd as Mrs. Peel survive.
For American broadcast, all episodes of the 1965–1966 series included a specially-shot prologue preceding the main credits, showing Steed and Peel walking across a giant chessboard while a narrator introduces the characters and the concept of the series. This opening never aired in the UK and wasn't widely seen in the show's home country until the DVD release.
"The Strange Case of the Missing Corpse" was filmed in colour on the set of "Honey for the Prince" and was, as Brian Clemens originally wrote it, intended to be tagged on to the end of the final b/w episode transmitted in America to advertise the upcoming colour episodes (though the b/w sequence titled "Preamble for USA," written by Clemens to introduce the item, which was to have featured Rigg and Macnee explaining/introducing this short colour test film, is either lost or was never filmed). It was also cut down into a trailer for the colour episodes coming soon to ABC Network in America. Just like the prologue to the b/w Rigg episodes, it was never meant to be screened anywhere but the US. There is a myth that it was to have originally been a twenty-minute mini-episode, but the version presently available on video is three minutes long and doesn't appear to be missing any substantial narrative content.
Season 5 (1967)
The Fear Merchants was the first episode of the Avengers to be produced/filmed in colour.
Season 6 (1968–1969)
John Bryce replaced Brian Clemens and Albert Fennell as producer for the start of the season. By the time Clemens and Fennell returned three episodes had been filmed: Two 90 minute episodes called "Invitation To a Killing" and "The Great Great Britain Crime" as well as a standard length episode "Invasion of the Earthmen". These were considered to be extremely flawed episodes and likely would have been scrapped except they didn't have time to film new episodes and still meet their American contract so "Invitation To a Killing" was heavily edited and had several new shots filmed to become "Have Guns — Will Haggle", "The Great Great Britain Crime" was heavily edited and had some old footage from previous episodes added, as well as some new footage to become "Homicide and Old Lace". "Invasion of the Earthmen" was slightly edited as well. No known copies of the original version of these episodes are known to exist.
This unusually long series of 33 episodes was divided into two separate series on original US broadcast. It was produced in two batches: seven episodes (mostly without Patrick Newell as "Mother" and none with Rhonda Parker as "Rhonda") and were added to the last eight Diana Rigg episodes for broadcast in the US in the spring of 1968, which made up the third series on ABC in America. On the original US broadcasts these episodes featured the original 'Shooting Gallery' opening/closing titles featuring Tara in a tight fitting tan outfit with a short skirt and gunshots as Steed and Tara are shot at by an unseen gunman, this was filmed by Harry Booth. These seven episodes were then added sporadically into the 26 episodes produced in the next block and transmitted in Britain as a single 33-episode run. The standard title sequence field/suits of armour opening and playing card ending were filmed by Robert Fuest, originally for the first US transmission of the 2nd block of 26 episodes, which made up the fourth series on ABC in America. These were then tacked on to all 33 episodes when broadcast in the UK, apart from 'The Forget-Me-Knot' which retained the amended Emma Peel opening credits and the original Tara King end credit sequence.
- In the episode "Killer", Tara King is only seen departing for and returning from holiday. Steed's fellow agent for this episode is Lady Diana Forbes-Blakeney (played by Jennifer Croxton).
- In the US the field/suits of armour title sequence was re-edited to 23 seconds (the UK sequence runs 49 seconds), to accommodate more commercials.
- The original 1968 German-dubbed episodes of this series had the field/suits of armour opening titles but the 'Shooting Gallery' end titles.
- The original 1968 French-dubbed episodes of this series feature a variant in the opening title music, a gunshot is heard during the shot of Tara running between two rows of suits of armour toward Steed, and the sound of the sword swipe at the beginning is missing.
- The original title music for the opening 'Shooting Gallery' sequence featured gunshots, the version of "Split!" with this title sequence currently available on DVD has the standard title music with opening sword swipe sound effect, where the first gunshot should be.
|Character||Actor||No. of episodes||Season(s)|
|Dr. David Keel||Ian Hendry||25||1|
|John Steed||Patrick Macnee||159||1–6|
|Dr. Cathy Gale||Honor Blackman||43||2–3|
|Venus Smith||Julie Stevens||6||2|
|Dr. Martin King||Jon Rollason||3||2|
|Mrs. Emma Peel||Diana Rigg||51||4–5|
|Tara King||Linda Thorson||33||6|
- Behind the Scenes: Dr David Keel Era at Avengers Forever!
- The Tara King Era at Avengers Forever!]
- Behind the Scenes: Tara King Era, Part 2 at Avengers Forever!