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Title: A Surfeit of H2O (20 Nov 1965)

A SURFEIT OF H2O

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Watch The Avengers Season 4 Episode 8 S4E8 A Surfeit of H2O

The week after - two of the very best episodes ever of The Avengers are on a superb double bill BBC4 Friday, 29th August 2008 11.00-12.40am – A Surfeit of H2O and The Hour That Never Was

In Season Four Cathy Gale was replaced by Emma Peel (played by Diana Rigg). On seeing an advance photo of her, I remember thinking how great she was going to look in a trench-coat. Alas, she never wore one! There are only two episodes in which she dons rainwear. One is "Silent Dust" [to which Pete has already drawn our attention], where she briefly wears a short riding mac, but of greater interest to us is "A Surfeit of H2O". At several points in this she wears a tight-fitting, shiny, black PVC suit. Inexplicably, for a fight at the end, despite taking place in an extremely heavy (artificially induced) downpour, she wears her leather fighting suit. (Perhaps they thought the PVC wouldn't be up to it.) Even better, in one all too brief scene in this episode, she wears a standard length, shiny black PVC raincoat, belted and buttoned. The stories were unashamedly surreal.

Talk:A Surfeit of H2O - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Season 4

10 A surfeit of H2O

Writer: Colin Finbow

20 November 1965
filmed April/May 1965
US transmission, not networked

When a poacher has been drawned during a big shower of rain it makes believe to Jonah Barnard the flood is coming. Soon it appears the staff of the winefactory knows more about the sudden rain showers. With the winefactory as a cover they invented a machine to make rain, which can be used for militairy purposes.

 

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In Season Four Cathy Gale was replaced by Emma Peel (played by Diana Rigg). On seeing an advance photo of her, I remember thinking how great she was going to look in a trench-coat. Alas, she never wore one! There are only two episodes in which she dons rainwear. One is "Silent Dust" [to which Pete has already drawn our attention], where she briefly wears a short riding mac, but of greater interest to us is "A Surfeit of H2O". At several points in this she wears a tight-fitting, shiny, black PVC suit. Inexplicably, for a fight at the end, despite taking place in an extremely heavy (artificially induced) downpour, she wears her leather fighting suit. (Perhaps they thought the PVC wouldn't be up to it.) Even better, in one all too brief scene in this episode, she wears a standard length, shiny black PVC raincoat, belted and buttoned. The stories were unashamedly surreal.

It's hard to say which came first with The Avengers - the totally bemusing plots, the brilliantly iconic, style-setting characterisations (the immaculately turned-out Steed with is oh-so-English bowler hat and umbrella, the gorgeously feminine but totally unsubservient Mrs Peel in her slinky cat-suits, racing around in her Lotus Elan and chopping up baddies with martial arts long before chop-socky movies had been thought of) or the amazingly slick flare with which it was all put together. But, undoubtedly, the whole production team went for class, and class is timeless. There were many brilliant episodes, so good that the show is still being re-shown on BBC4 (as of 2007) - 'Maneater of Surrey Green,' 'The House that Jack Built,' no other show was just so 'out there' with its imagination and originality.

But with 'A Surfeit of H2O' they really pushed the boat out. Admit it - even the title has you intrigued. An absolute all-time classic of Television, the bizarre, almost surrealist thriller series that was The Avengers reached such a lofty zenith with this episode that, even now, over 40 years later, whenever heavy rain blows in, a creepy feeling crawls up my spine and I think of this show.

Grab your brolly, you'll need it!