The Young Avenger
Direction: Five out of five. Peter Sykes second effort for the series, and totally wonderful. This episode could so easily have become an awful also-ran, yet it towers up there with some of the best of the series, including "Super Secret Cypher Snatch" and "Game." We have some genuinely interesting shots here, particularly of Steed walking down the street and in the scene where Tara almost falls out of the window.
Plot: Three out of five. Very like "Something Nasty in the Nursery" in style, it is hardly original, but it does seem it. The idea of having a load of civil servants falling in love with the office cleaner is just so laughable that it works.
Original Music: Five out of five. A wonderful score, capturing the mood and spirit of the occasion exactly, it really impresses everyone who sees it. Fantastic, and only one tune recycled, which was one of the best anyway, it fits in seamlessly. The best score of the season, perhaps ever.
With Music From: "A Touch of Brimstone."
Wittiness: Three out of five.
Action: Two out of five. Steed versus a possessed Frank Gatliff, one of the most major doppelgangers in the series and at the end he manages to control a hypnotised Tara. Better than Something Nasty in the Nursery.
Cars/Sets/Locations: Four out of five. Although this was shot in November, it has a rather good feel to it, and there is a lot of location filming in the streets of North London. The sets are all very good as well, particularly the one in the Casanova Ink headquarters. We also have a Mercedes, a Rolls-Royce Silver Shadow and a Mini. Very good direction from Sykes in all these sequences.
Introduction/Tag: Three out of five. Superb direction and music in the introduction, but unfortunately there is no satisfactory ending to it. It does get us involved in the plot, but it somehow does not feel right. The tag is again rather stupid and immature, but very funny.
Overall Impression: Although Jeremy Burnham had been watching "Something Nasty in the Nursery" one too many times, we still have superb direction, very strong guest star performances, particularly from Veronica Strong and Terence Alexander, and brilliant music. Another favourite of mine, this really does show how good the rest of the season could have been if the production crew had only been willing to put their minds to it. Mother's headquarters is also a great joke, with Mother playing cricket. Rhonda's bowling is not very good, unfortunately, but I do not think even I, as a cricketer myself, could have hit the balls whilst sitting down. Isn't Rodney Kellogg just the most stupid name you have ever heard?
Rating: Eight and a half out of ten.
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