"The Avengers" Stay Tuned (TV Episode 1969) Poster

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Has Steed gone mad?
ShadeGrenade30 March 2009
Warning: Spoilers
Steed prepares to leave for a well-deserved holiday. As he opens his front door, a man hits him in the face. We then see Steed doing the same thing all over again. Tara arrives and asks whether he enjoyed the holiday. Something is wrong.

An examination of his car reveals it was recently in Europe, and he finds a photograph of himself with a beautiful young woman ( Kate O'Mara ). Unable to account for two whole weeks in his life, he consults an eminent psychiatrist. All he can remember is the face of a Chinaman. Said face turns out to be the door knocker of a house in London, belonging to sinister hypnotist Kreer ( Roger Delgado ).

Steed's investigations are hampered by the fact that each time he makes progress, he wakes up back in his flat, with no memory of what had occurred earlier.

With Mother away, it is up to Father ( Iris Russell ) to maintain the running of the Department ( only in 'The Avengers' would 'Mother' be a man and 'Father' a woman - and a blind one at that! ). Father has no choice but to remove Steed from active duty...

Poor Steed. Like Michael Palin in the 'Deja Vu' sketch from 'Monty Python's Flying Circus' he finds himself repeating the same actions over and over again. The villains - led by Duncan Lamont and Kate O'Mara - have an ulterior motive - they want to turn him into an assassination machine. Target? Mother.

Intriguing script from Tony Williamson and stylish ( as one would expect ) direction from Don Chaffey. This was the only appearance of 'Father' in the series, very well played by Iris Russell, later to star ( as 'Mrs.Skinner' ) in the children's sci-fi drama 'Timeslip'. Pay careful attention to her dialogue - it is pretty naughty! The character reappeared in the 1998 movie, played on that occasion by Fiona Shaw.

'Kreer' is the late Roger Delgado, who menaced Jon Pertwee's 'Dr.Who' two years later. Kate O'Mara gives Linda Thorson a run for her money in the beauty stakes.

Episodes such as this prove that 'The Avengers' was still punching its weight.
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Steed forgets his holiday
Tweekums22 July 2015
Warning: Spoilers
As this episode opens Steed is preparing to go away on holiday; he opens to door to leave and a man knocks out. This scene then repeats but this time when he opens the door Tara is there asking if he is ready to go to work… it is as if the previous weeks have not happened for Steed. During his time away he apparently phoned Tara and send post cards from the continent and his car shows evidence of being overseas, there is also a photograph of him with a woman he has no recollection of. The only thing he seems to remember is a Chinese face. As he tries to find out what happened to him he is frequently followed by the man who hit him in the opening scene but strangely he doesn't appear to notice even when the man is right next to him. Every time Steed areas to be remembering something he is hit again and once again finds himself at home thinking it is the first day of his holiday. With Mother away Father is in charge; she removes Steed's security clearance and has him followed. As Steed and Tara close in on the truth both of them are in danger and we learn that Steed has been brainwashed into his condition with the intention of having him kill Mother!

This is a fine episode with a good sense of mystery. Since Steed is a character who is always in control of himself and the situation it is interesting to see him having to deal with a situation where he isn't in control. Patrick Macnee does a fine job depicting Steed as he struggles to come to come to terms with the lost time. Linda Thorson is also on good form as Tara tries to help her friend; she also has some good action scenes. Given that Mother is a man it is appropriate that Father is a woman; making her blind was also an interesting touch. It will come as no surprise that Steed doesn't actually kill Mother but the end is handled well making us think he may have attempted to kill him. Overall a really good episode with a greater sense of danger than usual without losing the classic Avengers feel.
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The last bona fide classic episode
kevinolzak12 May 2011
"Stay Tuned" was the last bona fide classic episode, with 8 more to go, scripted by Tony Williamson, one of the show's best writers. Steed is all set to go on holiday, when he meets a mysterious stranger (Gary Bond) who knocks him senseless; in fact, he proceeds to repeat these actions every time he spies the young man, all part of an insidious plot involving hypnosis and murder. With Mother away, we are introduced to the blind Father (Iris Russell, "Mission to Montreal" and "The Secrets Broker"), who decides to take Steed off of the active list until further notice. It's easy to take the hard working Patrick Macnee for granted, but his performance here is quite flawless, trying to piece together three missing weeks in his life between setbacks provided by his invisible adversary (at least we are granted some solace, unlike in "Death at Bargain Prices," where T. P. McKenna's dirty quick strike went unpunished). Among the villains are Kate O'Mara, Duncan Lamont, and Roger Delgado ("Crescent Moon"), all Hammer veterans, with Howard Marion Crawford ("What the Butler Saw" and "The Living Dead"), Dr. Petrie in all 5 Fu Manchu features opposite Christopher Lee, playing fellow agent Collins, who comes to a bad end after trailing the bewildered Steed. The familiar musical cues add to the moody atmosphere, cobbled from "The Joker," but reminiscent of the 1964 Hollywood production "The Night Walker," directed by William Castle. Two first season actors making a final appearance are Harold Kasket ("Crescent Moon") and Ewan Roberts ("Dance with Death").
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Not a classic, but still a fair bit to enjoy
canndyman30 June 2019
This isn't one of the classics by any stretch, but is still an intriguing and enjoyable episode that keeps the viewer guessing until the end.

When Steed seems to have 'lost' three weeks of his life - when he was supposedly away on vacation - alarm bells start ringing as he starts to experience his own version of Groundhog Day.

This was a clever episode which seems to be inspired by previous stories - but is hampered perhaps by being filmed in the run-up to Christmas, being mainy studio-bound.

Highlights include an appearance from Roger Delgado as a baddie - just before he was about to commence filming on Dr Who'. The irony of seeing Kate O'Mara in this story - later of course to play the female version of The Master as the 'Rani' - won't be lost on Who fans.

A rather hurried climax closes this one, and we're left with the feeling that this is a rather modest episode in what was on the whole an excellent season.
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I was a little lost but...
searchanddestroy-113 April 2019
Yes this episode scheme reminds me another one from Diana Rigg black and white season: THE HOUR THAT NEVER WAS, another loss of memory tale and deja vu scheme, where many holes remain and where simple minded folks as me can easily be lost. But that's not a bad episode at all, on the contrary. But mainly for intellectuals. I am too much cartesian, actually.
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