Episode 125: Emma Peel Era
Page 126 of 192



Emma helps Steed count a million half-pennies.

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Steed Chases a Million
Emma Walks Off With It

Production completed: 2 August 1967
UK Premiere (London, Season 6): 26 October 1967
US Premiere (New York, Season 3): 24 January 1968

Millionaires are being extorted by creative means: their hypothetical murders are staged over and over until paranoia gets the better of them, at which point they willingly fork over a million in cash to one Nathaniel Needle.


Although this is a favorite among fans, it is not a standout for me. It's just... well... bland. No outrageousness, no memorable lines or scenes—a perfect example of the "more realistic" direction the producers were trying to steer the show toward the end of the Emma Peel era. On the bright side, Mr. Needle (he hides in a haystack—get it?) is a marvelous mastermind, reminiscent of Mr Teddy Bear from the first Cathy Gale series—indeed, many people think it's the same actor, which it isn't.


This is the one and only time Diana Rigg appears in a leather catsuit during a color episode, and even here for only one brief scene. Diana is on record as disliking the leather gear, and it's a good bet this is one reason it was otherwise absent during the color season. But apparently the studio fielded a lot of correspondence from fans asking what became of the leather, which may explain this token appearance near the very end of the season (and Diana Rigg's tenure with the series). This creation, replete with chains and metallic trim, was designed by Alun "Emmapeeler" Hughes, possibly very early in his tenure. And the outfit might have seen a bit more use had it not been utterly destroyed during the stunt filming. Stuntwoman Cyd Child split several seams, and a lady named Gladys from the costume department followed her around all afternoon trying to keep the £400+ costume in one piece. By the end of the shoot it was "kaput," as Cyd put it in an interview with Dave Rogers.

For the ultra-trivia-minded, Diana was also filmed in a leather catsuit (the zippered one from the monochrome era) on color film for "The The Strange Case of the Missing Corpse," a studio promotional piece that was edited and broadcast in America as an advertisement for the upcoming color season.

Did you notice the diabolical mastermind's television camera? It's labeled "Needle TV." I have no idea why I get a kick out of that...

Simon Oates (Skelton) played Steed in the short-lived stage play of The Avengers.

 On Location

Tyke's Water Lake once again provided a setting. The bridge was the money drop point, and the lake was the "river" where a rather wet fight took place. Side grounds at The Edgwarebury Hotel also made an appearance. On Location provides current views of these spots.

 Essential Reading


Teleplay by
Directed by

Philip Levene
Robert Asher

Full production credits


John Steed
Emma Peel
Lord Maxted

Patrick Macnee 007
Diana Rigg 007
Barrie Ingham
Robert Flemying
George Murcell # 007
Leslie French# 007
Geoffrey Chater #
Simon Oates #
Clifford Cox
John Baker #
Les Crawford
Frank Maher #
Peter J. Elliott #


John Baker


Geoffrey Chater

You'll Catch Your Death

Peter J. Elliot

A Funny Thing Happened...
Dead Man's Treasure
Have Guns - Will Haggle
All Done with Mirrors

Leslie French

Death of a Great Dane

Frank Maher

November Five
Dressed to Kill
The Little Wonders

George Murcell

Square Root of Evil

Simon Oates

Super Secret Cypher Snatch

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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