Episode 36: Cathy Gale Era
Page 36 of 192



 El Penique Mauritius

  Other Viewpoints

• Visitor reviews



Steed suffers a toothache
Cathy takes up stamp collecting*

Production completed: 1 November 1962
UK Premiere (London, Season 2): 17 November 1962
US Premiere (A&E cable): ca. 5 February 1991

An extremely rare stamp turns up on a common catalog list, rather like a da Vinci appearing in a sale flier for K-Mart. The fellow who made this discovery is shot. Fortunately, Steed had the man's phone tapped, and soon, with the aid of Cathy's philately expertise, they are able to get their feet in the door of a fanatic political group preparing to simultaneously overthrow the British and several European governments.


Gets off to a slow start, but once Steed arrives at the dentist's, the pace picks up quickly. High marks for some delightfully fanatical performances and a few excellent touches, such as the dentist explaining to Steed how she knew he was a fake—a wonderfully outrageous bit that one might expect to see in a Monty Python skit!

The stamp catalogs, by the way, were being used to transmit coded information among the various group headquarters, and the Mauritius Penny was the "Hitler" of the organization.


Stephen in the UK notes: The New Rule meeting in this episode was later adapted by Terrance Dicks for "Robot", a mid-70s installment of Doctor Who. It also features a meeting held by the Scientific Reform Society (which has much in common with the organisation in "Penny"), which is infiltrated by the Doctor's journalist companion Sarah, who is soon exposed as a spy. In 2001, Dicks considered these similarities in an introduction to a book containing the script for "Robot": "I was genuinely unaware of the similarities between 'Robot' and 'Penny'. They're undoubtedly there, but the whole process was unconscious at the time. My old friend Mac Hulke [co-writer of 'Penny'] used to say that to write science fiction, or any kind of fiction, you needed a strong original idea. It didn't have to be your strong original idea. On this case, curiously enough, it was my idea - or rather ours. Still, I don't suppose Mac would have minded."

And Lars Walker writes: I was surprised to recognize the organ music being played during the auction. It's a Norwegian hymn, "Den Store, Hvite Flokk,'" which means "The Great White Host," usually translated "Behold A Host." A strange musical choice, it seems to me.

*This unofficial subtitle is by Yours Truly.

 Essential Reading


Teleplay by
Story Editor
Designed by
Directed by

Malcolm Hulke & Terrance Dicks
John Bryce
Phillip Harrison
Leonard White
Richmond Harding

Full production credits


John Steed
Cathy Gale
Gerald Shelly
Lord Matterley
Sheila Gray
Inspector Burke
P.C. Andrews
Miss Power
Lorry Driver
Lorry Driver's Mate
Foreign Delegate

Patrick Macnee 007
Honor Blackman 007
Alfred Burke #
David Langton #
Richard Vernon 007
Sylvia Langova #
Edward Jewesbury
Harry Shacklock #
Alan Rolfe
Philip Guard
Grace Arnold
Edward Higgins #
Delia Corrie
Raymond Hodge
Edwin Brown #
Anthony Blackshaw #
Theodore Wilhelm
Anthony Rogers


Anthony Blackshaw

The Sell-Out
Esprit de Corps
Super Secret Cypher Snatch

Edwin Brown

The Nutshell

Alfred Burke

The Girl from Auntie

Edward Higgins

The Forget-Me-Knot

Sylvia Langova


David Langton

November Five
The 50,000 Breakfast

Harry Shacklock

A Change of Bait
Man-Eater of Surrey Green

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Page last modified: 5 May 2017.

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