“Forgotten Hollywood”- The Loss of an Avenger…

Posted on June 26, 2015 by raideoman1 | No Comments

Manny P. here…Patrick MacNee

   The actor who played one of three of my favorite male television characters of the 1960s has died. Patrick Macnee was the British-born chap best known as dapper secret agent John Steed in the long-running 1960s series The Avengers. Instead of a gun, Steed wielded one heck of an umbrella. The gimmick was an inspiration.                PATRICK MACNEE –>

   The clever spy drama, which began in 1961 in Britain, debuted in the United States in 1966. It ran for eight seasons and continued in syndication for decades. He was accompanied by a string of beautiful women who were his sidekicks. The most popular was likely Diana Rigg, who played sexy junior agent Emma Peel from 1965 to 1968. Honor Blackman played Catherine Gale from 1962 to 1964, and Linda Thorson was Tara King from 1968 to 1969.

   The ever-dapper Macnee found acting while attending Eton College. He also served in the military during World War II, as the captain of torpedo boats that destroyed German U-boats in French waters. After the war, Patrick apprenticed in the British theater, toured in provincial theaters, and made his film debut as an extra in the 1938 film Pygmalion.

    Other films include Hamlet, Les Girls, The Howling, This is Spinal Tap, A View to a Kill, and the cinematic version of The Avengers. In the later flick, Ralph Fiennes played the pithy John Steed.

   On the small screen, Macnee guest starred in Playhouse 90, Rawhide, The Twilight Zone,  Alias Smith and Jones, Battlestar Galactica, Hart to Hart, Murder She Wrote, The Love Boat, Columbo, and Magnum P.I. (as a delusional agent who thinks he is Sherlock Holmes). Macnee made his Broadway debut as the star of Sleuth in 1972, and subsequently headlined the national tour.

   Macnee became an American citizen in 1959, and he moved to Palm Springs in 1967. The Avengers provided a comfortable living for the actor, since he owned 2.5% of the profits, and the series continued to play all over the world into the 21st Century.

   By the way, in case you’re wondering, my other fave male characters on television of the 1960s… James Darren as Tony Phillips in The Time Tunnel; and Jonathan Frid as Barnabas Collins in Dark Shadows.

   Patrick Macnee was 93.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

This entry was posted on Friday, June 26th, 2015 at 3:08 am and is filed under Blog by Manny Pacheco. You can follow any comments to this post through the RSS 2.0 feed. Responses are currently closed, but you can trackback from your own site.

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