by Remco Admiraal, Dokkum, the Netherlands (with broadcast data from Henkus Schumacher)
The Avengers was broadcast on Dutch television as De Wrekers, which is a literal translation of the British title. The series was shown with Dutch subtitles and without commercial breaks.
De Wrekers premiered 18 October 1966 and was almost instantly successful. Dutch broadcasting company KRO showed the series (with intervals) until 30 August 1975. In the sixties, episodes with Honor Blackman and Diana Rigg were shown. Starting January 1970 the series with Linda Thorson was shown, followed by repeats of the Diana Rigg episodes in the summer of 1974 because these proved most popular by far.
In October 1976 The Avengers resurfaced on Dutch TV as the first season of 13 episodes of The New Avengers was shown. The second season was shown from September 1977.
The success of the series can also be measured by the release of several interesting pieces of Dutch memorabilia of the series.
There were four paperbacks released to coincide with the airing of The Avengers. In 1967 the British paperbacks were translated and published with a front cover design by well known artist Dick Bruna (in the range Zwarte beertjes) with black and white photos of Patrick Macnee and Diana Rigg. The paperbacks were translations of "Heil Harris," "The Passing of Gloria Munday," "The Floating Game" and "The Laugh was on Lazarus," all originally by John Garforth. The stories of these paperbacks were published in the weekly TV Guide Studio by broadcasting company KRO as well. There were also two comic strip magazines published based on the Emma Peel as well as a Dutch version of the British Emma Peel Avengers Annual.
Tara King was also treated with a comic strip book. In the range TV Favorieten a 64-page colour comic strip book with several stories was published. Finally, there was one Dutch paperback of The New Avengers published late 70s, "House of Cards."
In 1984 and 1993 the colour Emma Peel episodes were repeated and in 1995 Dutch satellite channel Veronica repeated these again together with the Tara King episodes (October to November 1995). Both colour series have been released on DVD the last couple of years.
The New Avengers was shown as De Terugkeer van de Wrekers on Dutch TV, which translates into "the return of the Avengers." There was a lot of attention in the press for the series, and the stars were shown on the front covers and in articles of several Dutch TV guides and gossip magazines.
The episodes were shown uncut and without commercial breaks. It was shown in two blocks, season I and season II, on prime time and was rather successful, but was never repeated on Dutch TV.
It is very interesting to note that the series premiered on Dutch TV almost one month before the UK! While the series in the UK started 22 October 1976, Dutch viewers were able to see The New Avengers 7 October. This was not uncommon, as the same thing happened with another "remake" TV series, Return of the Saint, which premiered in June 1978 (UK premiere September 1978).
Shown on the second Dutch TV Channel Nederland 2 (KRO) 8.25 pm to 9.15 pm:
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