Latest Avengers Special Features Announced
The Avengers Declassified has revealed the special features on the latest volume of remastered Avengers Special Edition DVDs in the UK from Optimum Entertainment, and once again it's a mouthwatering assembly of goodies. Besides a beautiful remastered picture looking better than ever (if previous installments are anything to go by), The Avengers: The Complete Series 5, a 7-disc set comprising the color Emma Peel episodes, will include multiple audio commentaries, episode introductions, cut scenes, archival television presentations and more. Brian Clemens contributes a commentary track for "Murdersville," as does scriptwriter Richard Harris on "The Winged Avenger." Diana Rigg sadly doesn't do a commentary, but her stunt double, Cyd Child, does, on "Return of The Cybernauts." And possibly best of all, we get a commentary from scene-stealing guest star Peter Wyngarde on his greatest, most scenery-chewsing Avengers role in the classic episode, "Epic," one of my personal favorites! But that's not all...
Clemens provides filmed episode introductions to "The Bird Who Knew Too Much," "The Living Dead," "Epic," "The Correct Way To Kill," "The Superlative Seven," (love those two!), "A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To The Station," "The Joker" (oh, another favorite!) and "Murdersville." There's also a German TV interview with Patrick Macnee and Diana Rigg, ATV newsreel footage of Rigg receiving a TV Award, "film trims" (short cut bits) from "The Fear Merchants," "Escape in Time," "From Venus With Love" and "The See-Through Man," a "They're Back!" archive trailer, original Sixties German titles, "Granada Plus Points" for each episode (previously released as "Follow the Hat" on the old UK Contender DVDs), stills galleries, copious PDF material (scripts, TV Times, etc.), an insert reprint of the original Series 5 promotional brochure, more painstaking "episode reconstructions" for lost Series 1 episodes ("One For The Mortuary," "Death on The Slipway," "Tunnel of Fear" and "Dragonsfield") and the 1993 documentary presented by Patrick Macnee, "The Avengers – A Retrospective." Whew! Just typing all those episode titles gets me really excited to watch them again. The Avengers is my very favorite spy show (and Rigg's tenure my favorite era on it), and it's been a long while since I've watched it. I've been vacationing, exploring all the other British adventure shows of the era, for pretty much the duration of this blog, and I look forward to returning to my spy fan roots, so to speak, just as it's always refreshing to go back to Bond after long stints of Eurospy watching. I just wish these sets weren't so expensive to import. Hopefully some enterprising American company will pick up the rights abandoned by A&E, port the features from Optimum and re-release the show Stateside on DVD and Blu-ray.
The Avengers: The Complete Series 5, a PAL Region 2 DVD set, comes out September 27. SRP is £59.99, but it's currently available for pre-order from Amazon.co.uk for £42.99.