Cathy's first recorded episode. It looks like it's going to be another Martin King-style snooze-fest (after the dreadful "The Sell-Out"), what with loads of obvious stock footage of Jamaica, and a hilarious piece of "waiting for her cue" acting by the beach ball belle. How wrong can one be? As soon as Macnee meets up with Honor, the screen smoulders and Steed's lounge-lizardness transforms into fun banter.
The Avenged?: Nice to see a teaser-scene agent who actually suspects he's going to be attacked. Perhaps the Civil Service doesn't always employ nincompoops as some episodes suggest! The South American revolution plot depends on assassination, so more is at stake than just some stolen papers. But the plot is purely a (successful) vehicle for getting some Jamaican sunshine into the British viewers' bleak midwinter.
Diabolical Masterminds?: Various murderous types hired by a politico. They give up a bit easily near the end, but there's genuine tension as Cathy infiltrates (in disguise, of course!) and comes close to discovery several times.
The Avengers?: Great scenes where Steed decides to ruin Cathy's reputation (spying from her room all night, wearing out one eyeball at a time). Steed running rings around the inept sub-consul, Travers. Steed getting tough in the tavern, pulling the barman over the bar by his neck (that looked genuinely painful!). And Cathy's charms must have worked wonders on the male viewership in this one — decent indeed!
Umbrella, Charm and a Bowler Hat?: Steed's holiday clothes and poolside manner are horrendous! But he has been up since before 3 AM (Jamaica time) and we can blame it on jet-lag and his "liquid breakfast".
Bizarre?: Cathy dresses very femininely and sometimes is barely dressed at all! She'll soon don the fighting gear in which she looks so much more comfortable...
Score: Three jet-setting bowlers. Slightly unfocussed, and the jaunty music soon goes downhill, but who cares — you can't go wrong when there's so much fun on the screen with Patrick, Honor, and Gerald Harper. (Technical point: I've tried two copies of the French DVD and both have occasional sound dropout; still far better than VHS).
materials copyrighted per their respective copyright holders.