Brian Cle­mens on Emma Peel, the ul­ti­mate TV hero­ine

SFX - - Brian clemens -

“I was quite proud of the fact that

The Avengers put the first re­ally and truly eman­ci­pated woman on screen. I al­ways took the view that she was be­yond that; that Emma Peel could now put her bra back on. She’d done that; got the t- shirt, now get­ting on with life as a proper woman.”

“I was at­tracted by the idea that Diana [ Rigg] was vir­tu­ally un­known. She was known in the pres­ti­gious theatre, but she wasn’t fa­mous-fa­mous. It’s al­ways good to launch a new face; some­thing they’ve forgotten to do on tele­vi­sion now. TV is a sort of in­ces­tu­ous thing now.”

“Once Diana was cast we started shoot­ing. But within that there was al­ways a train­ing pe­riod. When she wasn’t work­ing in an ac­tual scene, she might be round the cor­ner prac­tis­ing throws with Ray Austin and the other stunt­man. That hap­pens with all ac­tors; they like to get into the part.”

“The big­ger the roles that Diana did I thought she got more arch some­how. She was sort of flip­pant in The

Avengers, which she was meant to be. But I think in the Bond film she was be­tray­ing some of her in­ner feel­ings in that I don’t think she had much re­spect for Lazenby and that sort of comes across on screen for me. Maybe it’s me.”

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