Quote, Unquote: Season 3
Page 3 of 7

Patrick Macnee, Actor, on his alter-ego: "The role of this tough and highly professional undercover man, whose Secret Service activities are hidden behind a wealthy and debonair man-about-town facade, was created specially for me and has been developed to fit my own background and personality. Many of Steed's tastes and habits of speech are mine; others are dream projections of the man I would like to be. I am an unashamed romantic who would have thoroughly enjoyed the life of a Regency buck. Steed is dedicated, ruthless, unscrupulous. His mission is all-important and in his eyes its success justifies whatever methods he has to use. Unlike his co-avenger Cathy Gale, he carries none of the obvious symbols of his vocation, such as a gun holster. In fact he uses a gun infrequently. When tackling thugs he fights like a cad and uses every dirty trick in the book. His guiding principle is to knock them out with the least inconvenience to himself."

Honor Blackman, Actress, on public perceptions: "I have now grown to live with—and love—Cathy Gale. Projecting her image on the TV screen has, I am certain, helped the adjustment of public opinion to the acceptance of women as equal partners in life."

Richard Bates, Story Editor, on capitalising on success: "In order to maintain the already high standard of The Avengers, I invited more than eighty writers, considered over two hundred stories and have read more than a half million words. Every minute of the past twelve months has been spent searching for the best possible stories. I wanted them to be exciting but fun, unusual but comprehensible, different but still adventurous. Nothing could be to good, every episode had to be about something new and presented in an exciting way. I think that on most occasions we succeeded, and the final credit for the high standard of this present series must go to the script writers."

John Bryce, Producer, on sustaining enthusiasm: "We are very sensitive to criticism, and I keep a constant watch for the hardening of the arteries which means a 'formula' series. We must therefore always feel excited about what we are doing. 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."

Honor Blackman, Actress, on living with leather: "I'm told leather drives men up the wall. I like wearing it because it feels nice. Off-screen? No, of course I wouldn't go shopping in an outfit like this. Apart from anything else, I find boots are too hot except in wintry weather. At home I usually wear a sweater, shirt and slacks."

Frederick Starke, Costume Designer, on dressing Cathy Gale: "I read a few of the scripts and found out what kind of person Cathy Gale is meant to be. I thought of her as a female James Bond, alias Secret Agent 007. She does a great deal of fighting so the clothes had to be practical. Cathy is meant to be a fashionable woman. There are occasions when she will need simpler clothes. She has two basic suits and a pinafore dress. She can wear anything so long as it isn't fluffy. She is a beautiful girl with a lovely figure, but an unusual bone structure makes her difficult to fit."

Patrick Macnee, Actor, on choosing Steed's wardrobe: "Steed's things are light and flipperty-gibbet. I use the Edwardian look—it's different. I have a number of peculiar likes and dislikes. They mean a lot but I can't give reasons for them. I've chosen my clothes on my own instinct completely."

Honor Blackman, Actress, on becoming a biker in Build a Better Mousetrap: "I felt a bit wobbly when I first got on the bike, the more so as I had to look confident for the programme. But I soon got the hang of it again and it was quite a thrill."

Marcel Stellman, Record Company Executive, on Macnee and Blackman's Kinky Boots record: "Blackman sounds a cross between Julie London and Marlene Dietrich; Macnee has a humorous British twinkle in his timbre."

Honor Blackman, Actress, on knocking out stuntman and wrestler, Jackie Pallo: "He was supposed to fall into the grave and get out again. When he didn't we dashed to see what was the matter. He was just out cold. At first I thought my judo had gone wrong. Then I realised it was all an accident."

Jackie Pallo, Stuntman and Wrestler, on the same incident: "I want it to be made perfectly clear that this was an accident. I have never been beaten by a woman, and never intend to be. She was supposed to win in the end, but definitely not this way. There was no question of Miss Blackman throwing me. We were not wrestling. If I had been wrestling, I would have tied her up in a couple of minutes. I was fighting her for a shovel. She let go and I fell into the grave. It was about four feet deep and padded, but I must have caught my head on something."

Honor Blackman, Actress, on learning lines with husband, Maurice Kaufmann: "Maurice and I have enacted dozens of scenes from The Avengers at home. But having an actor for a husband does not mean every situation runs smoothly. For one thing, there is the difference between the two actors' interpretations of a role. And since Pat Macnee often throws me lines spontaneously, I must always be flexible and watch for possible variations in the script."

Quotes sourced from TVTimes magazine,
World Distributors' Meet The Avengers special
and The Daily Mail, 1963/64
Compiled by Alan Hayes

All materials copyrighted per their respective copyright holders.
This website Copyright 1996-2017 David K. Smith. All Rights Reserved.
Page last modified: 5 May 2017.

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