THE AVENGERS: THE CYBERNAUTS (1965)

My next viewing experience was the Cybernauts Trilogy, Three classic episodes of The Avengers, and no not the Avengers of Marvel Comics fame, but the classic British Spy series with a quirky and sometimes very unique spin. You had the original series that ran for 7 seasons in the 60s and the second run, known as The New Avengers, which ran for an additional 2 seasons. What I have watched and I’m reviewing here is the first of a trio of episodes all including killer robots called Cybernauts. The Cybernauts was the third episode of season 4, which originally aired in 1965.

The episode stars; Patrick Macnee, Diana Rigg, Michael Gough, Frederick Jaegar, Bernard Horsfall, Burt Kwouk, John Hollis, among others.

It was written by Philip Levene and directed by Sidney Hayers. Sidney Hayers has had a prolific career in film and television as a director, going as far back as 1959 till 1999. He passed away in 2000 at the age of 78.

The Avengers investigate a series of murders of Corporate men, who have all been bidding on a new circuit element. Each one of them seems to have been killed by a powerful Karate blow, so Mrs. Peel visits a Karate Dojo, Steed’s inquiries lead him to United Automation, where ex-Ministry scientist Dr. Armstrong is working on an electronic brain, not to mention cybernetic men.

I watched the episode via Bluray, the Network release from the UK, The Cybernauts Trilogy, featuring all three Cybernauts episodes, remastered in HD, and I don’t think any of the episodes have ever looked better. As an extra you can watch the episodes with commercials that would have been shown at the time, with the original title cards included, to give you the feel of watching them on television, which was a novel little gimmick. The picture and sound quality was fantastic.

The other two episodes in this trilogy being Return of the Cybernauts and The Last of The Cybernauts.

One thing you notice from the offstead is that the series is made with high production values. It’s so well made, as with all three episodes on the disc.

Patrick Macnee and Diana Rigg are brilliant in their roles as John Steed and Emma Peel, and Michael Gough manages to put in a solid performance as the villain of the episode, Dr. Armstrong.

The Cybernaut itself might look a little silly but you can’t fault the overall episode as it’s a solid piece of television, that thrills and entertains throughout. It contains mild violence. 4 1/2 out of 5.

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