Quick — name a British spy who, through several incarnations, has carried out his missions with the help of a number of good-looking and smart female colleagues. If you said “James Bond,” you’re right — but if you said “John Steed,” of The Avengers, you’d also be correct.
The ties between The Avengers and 007 don’t stop there. All of the main stars of the ’60s TV show have appeared in Bond movies. Steed himself, which is to say actor Patrick Macnee, played Sir Godfrey Tibbett (an MI6 horse expert) in A View to a Kill. Honor Blackman played both The Avengers’ Catherine Gale and Goldfinger’s Pussy Galore; Diana Rigg played The Avengers’ Emma Peel and the ill-fated Tracy, Mrs. Bond, in On Her Majesty’s Secret Service. (If you go beyond the original TV series, there’s even more overlap: Joanna Lumley from The New Avengers was in On Her Majesty’s Secret Service, and Sean Connery appeared in the 1998 movie version of The Avengers.)
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