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Patrick's book
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Little Wonder


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 03, 2008 8:47 am    Post subject: Patrick's book Reply with quote

The Avengers and Me is a delightful read, except when he's deprecating himself and groveling with apologies for sleights long past, real or imagined.

But it's got the best collection of Peter Hammond anecdotes anywhere.



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kim
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 03, 2008 6:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Have you read his book Blind in One Ear? If all that he says is true, it would explain a great deal why he seems to self depreciate. He doesn't have a great deal of positive self esteem, which also explains why he apologizes all the time. As Linda Thorson pointed out, he's a people pleaser and tends to go with what the majority want to hear.
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next thursday
Little Wonder


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 03, 2008 8:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

kim wrote:
Have you read his book Blind in One Ear? If all that he says is true, it would explain a great deal why he seems to self depreciate. He doesn't have a great deal of positive self esteem, which also explains why he apologizes all the time. As Linda Thorson pointed out, he's a people pleaser and tends to go with what the majority want to hear.


No, haven't read that one. Not sure I want to if it's more of that. Avengers and Me is a fun read when I get around that tendency of his. He tells great tales. But I just cringe when he begins the mewling.
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kim
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 04, 2008 8:15 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

next thursday wrote:
kim wrote:
Have you read his book Blind in One Ear? If all that he says is true, it would explain a great deal why he seems to self depreciate. He doesn't have a great deal of positive self esteem, which also explains why he apologizes all the time. As Linda Thorson pointed out, he's a people pleaser and tends to go with what the majority want to hear.


No, haven't read that one. Not sure I want to if it's more of that. Avengers and Me is a fun read when I get around that tendency of his. He tells great tales. But I just cringe when he begins the mewling.


Blind in One Ear is his autobiography. It is very insightful from a psychological point of view as it explains so much of why he is the way he is, i.e., apologetic all the time, a "People pleaser", slow to react, etc. Add to the fact that he really does seem to have a terrible memory in spots, and it gives the reader a better understanding why he is always "mewling."

I really like that word "mewling." That just says so much! Very Happy
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Frankymole
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 04, 2008 11:53 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

He's typically English and modest, especially for a gentleman of his era. The emptiest vessels make the most noise, so I'm glad he just spent his time and energy making wonderful things for us to watch!
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kim
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 04, 2008 12:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Frankymole wrote:
He's typically English and modest, especially for a gentleman of his era. The emptiest vessels make the most noise, so I'm glad he just spent his time and energy making wonderful things for us to watch!


Please don't think I was putting the man down. I simply meant to point out that there is really a reason why he comes off the way he does. No one can have gone through the type of childhood he had and not come out of it unscathed. However, despite a few things like his constant apologizing which can grate on a person's nerves if they are not aware of his background, he really is a remarkable and admirable man.
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Dandy Forsdyke
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 04, 2008 12:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I tend to agree with Kim.

I feel sorry in a way for Patrick. He was a bit washed up before The Avengers, and after really never did anything of long-lasting significant interest again. I believe that's why he stayed with the show so long; finally he was a success and he was gonna hang onto it.

He must've had very mixed feelings to return to it in 1976 - especially seeing the successes of the award-winning Diana Rigg. I'm reminded of the Peter O'Toole comment in the lift ("But Patrick, you're always doing The Avengers!")
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mousemeat
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 04, 2008 2:41 pm    Post subject: Re: Patrick's book Reply with quote

next thursday wrote:
The Avengers and Me is a delightful read, except when he's deprecating himself and groveling with apologies for sleights long past, real or imagined.

But it's got the best collection of Peter Hammond anecdotes anywhere.




I concur..it's a funny book..and full of tidbits and info..and Yeah, Patrick might had some envy with Rigg's success....I'm hoping not...

One thing for certain, He had one of the GREAT voices of the era, even today, his voice still commands respect...
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Artanis
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 04, 2008 4:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I agree, The Avengers and Me was a good read and Patrick's apologies didn't bother me too much. Overall, it's a fun book.

And I still need to read his autobiography.
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Timeless A-Peel
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 04, 2008 7:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Dandy Forsdyke wrote:
I tend to agree with Timeless.

I feel sorry in a way for Patrick. He was a bit washed up before The Avengers, and after really never did anything of long-lasting significant interest again. I believe that's why he stayed with the show so long; finally he was a success and he was gonna hang onto it.

He must've had very mixed feelings to return to it in 1976 - especially seeing the successes of the award-winning Diana Rigg. I'm reminded of the Peter O'Toole comment in the lift ("But Patrick, you're always doing The Avengers!")


Erm, I haven't actually posted in this thread (until now, that is). Wink

I honestly don't think Patrick begrudged Diana any of her acclaim (I mean, he went and lived with her and Archie Stirling while he was shooting TNA and she was pregnant with Rachael, and by all accounts they had a grand old time). He does tend to self-deprecate and claim he's not a very good actor, and did pretty much anything he was offered as a result, but whatever he says, he was brilliant as Steed (no one else could have played it the way he did), and hopefully he knows it. It's quite clear he had a lot of issues (with his childhood, who wouldn't), and a tendency fall back into bad habits when things went wrong (the Avengers sections in his autobiography are a fascinating roller coaster. When the show was running and being well-received by viewers, and the finances were looking good, he'd quit drinking and smoking. As soon as the show quit and the money started to run out, he'd start up again. Over and over. He'd just switch his addictions on and off. Amazing). It is too bad his recollections are often faulty. I have a tendency to think a lot of his gripes with TNA were a reflection of his own insecurities rather than actual perceived faults with the series. Steed was not put out to pasture in season one. The only cut in screentime came from having more characters, but real balancing issues didn't cut in until Gareth's part was reduced, more or less because of Patrick's complaints. I hate to say it, but I think he was a little threatened having another man on the show.
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Dandy Forsdyke
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 04, 2008 10:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Timeless A-Peel wrote:


Erm, I haven't actually posted in this thread (until now, that is). Wink


Sorry, I meant Kim... Embarassed

I didn't mean Pat begrudged Diana her successes - far from it, I think he was very proud of her. But I think it possibly made him re-evalue his own career. Hense his comments that he should have left when Diana went.

In Leslie Phillips' biography (Phillips and Macnee are lifelong friends and were appearing in Les Girls together at the time) it says Pat had gone to LA in the 1950s thinking he might have an advantage "being the cousin of David Niven" (of course we know this is untrue).

Leslie wrote: "However Niven turned out to be, in Patrick's words, 'No f**king help, whatsoever'."
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Dandy Forsdyke
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 04, 2008 10:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

This is from another part of the Leslie Phillips autobiography. It has nothing to do with this thread but, as it was witnessed by Patrick Macnee, I thought it would be of some interest...

Leslie and Patrick were having dinner on Sunset Strip in a restaurant that was divided into two and four seat cubicles. A conversation could be heard from another cubicle that was so sexually graphic that both felt embarrassed to listen. Later the conversation changed and the woman (Leslie says, 'you couldn't call her a lady') started accusing her companion of having interests elsewhere.

The more he denied it the angrier she became and the insults became more wildly targeted about her male companions anatomy. Patrick and Leslie's conversation had grounded to a halt, by which time the was a crescendo of insults and out burst free from the cubicle none other but Judy Garland and an un-named film director.
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Frankymole
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 04, 2008 11:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

kim wrote:

Please don't think I was putting the man down. I simply meant to point out that there is really a reason why he comes off the way he does. No one can have gone through the type of childhood he had and not come out of it unscathed. However, despite a few things like his constant apologizing which can grate on a person's nerves if they are not aware of his background, he really is a remarkable and admirable man.


I didn't think you were putting him down, I thought the OP was. I thought you did a good job of explaining Macnee's modesty trait. I was adding that many/most Englishmen, particularly of his generation, are overly modest. It is seen as uncouth and vulgar to "blow one's own trumpet", and indeed the opposite is admired, which is why so many British war heroes don't talk about it and yet someone like McCain never stops...
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kim
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 05, 2008 12:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Frankymole wrote:
kim wrote:

Please don't think I was putting the man down. I simply meant to point out that there is really a reason why he comes off the way he does. No one can have gone through the type of childhood he had and not come out of it unscathed. However, despite a few things like his constant apologizing which can grate on a person's nerves if they are not aware of his background, he really is a remarkable and admirable man.


I didn't think you were putting him down, I thought the OP was. I thought you did a good job of explaining Macnee's modesty trait. I was adding that many/most Englishmen, particularly of his generation, are overly modest. It is seen as uncouth and vulgar to "blow one's own trumpet", and indeed the opposite is admired, which is why so many British war heroes don't talk about it and yet someone like McCain never stops...


If I have to listen to one more story about McCain being a war hero, I'm going to scream! God help us if we have to hear about it for the next four to eight years!
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Timeless A-Peel
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 05, 2008 12:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Dandy Forsdyke wrote:
Timeless A-Peel wrote:


Erm, I haven't actually posted in this thread (until now, that is). Wink


Sorry, I meant Kim... Embarassed


No biggie! Very Happy

Dandy Forsdyke wrote:

I didn't mean Pat begrudged Diana her successes - far from it, I think he was very proud of her. But I think it possibly made him re-evalue his own career. Hense his comments that he should have left when Diana went.

In Leslie Phillips' biography (Phillips and Macnee are lifelong friends and were appearing in Les Girls together at the time) it says Pat had gone to LA in the 1950s thinking he might have an advantage "being the cousin of David Niven" (of course we know this is untrue).

Leslie wrote: "However Niven turned out to be, in Patrick's words, 'No f**king help, whatsoever'."


Ah, I see. Although, to be fair, Patrick's said on various occasions that he should have left when Honor did as well, or should have stopped with the Taras and never done TNA, or that TNA should have gone on longer because they were just starting to gel as a team. I don't think even he knew half the time what he wanted. But I can see how it would be difficult watching others move on to other things while you stay in the same role. I honestly think had he not felt he had a duty to take care of Linda and felt loyal to the show, he would have gone. Even if it had continued, I suspect he would have eventually asked to be phased out and have a Gambit-like character brought in to pick up the slack. You can see it already with Baron von Kurt. His enthusiasm was waning.
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Dandy Forsdyke
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 06, 2008 1:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Timeless A-Peel wrote:
Although, to be fair, Patrick's said on various occasions that he should have left when Honor did as well, or should have stopped with the Taras and never done TNA, or that TNA should have gone on longer because they were just starting to gel as a team. I don't think even he knew half the time what he wanted.


True. I think his opinion is confused which might explain why he didn't have a clear vision of what he wanted to do.

When Pat said he should have left with Honor Blackman, I think he meant he would have liked Honor to have carried on, onto film and into colour, not leave with her in 1964 - before the US success of the show. So I think he was still thinking of the same time-frame: 1967.

We also have to remember Patrick was still quite happy to don the bowler after the end of The Avengers and before The New Avengers in TV spots and commercials, and after in guest appearences in American TV shows. He really was "always doing" The Avengers in one way or another! Smile
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Allard
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 06, 2008 4:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Timeless A-Peel wrote:


Ah, I see. Although, to be fair, Patrick's said on various occasions that he should have left when Honor did as well, or should have stopped with the Taras and never done TNA, or that TNA should have gone on longer because they were just starting to gel as a team. I don't think even he knew half the time what he wanted. But I can see how it would be difficult watching others move on to other things while you stay in the same role. I honestly think had he not felt he had a duty to take care of Linda and felt loyal to the show, he would have gone. Even if it had continued, I suspect he would have eventually asked to be phased out and have a Gambit-like character brought in to pick up the slack. You can see it already with Baron von Kurt. His enthusiasm was waning.



Patrick Macnee is in away a real old fashioned English Gentleman, somewhat a prisoner of others expectations and always too polite for his own good.
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frank
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 06, 2008 6:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I agree with Kim, you should read his autobiography. He can be quite the charming man but some of his character flaws are understandable when you read about his mother and his "aunt" or do i mean uncle? What a piece of work she was!

Definitely an insecure man like many actors. The truth is I love the character he created in Steed. But being a cult icon and only a cult icon is a mixed blessing. You get famous, you get more opportunities but you get to be a victim of typecasting. Much of the stuff I saw him post-avengers he is basically playing Steed. The one time he really got to get away from that character was on battlestar galactica. You could tell he was really relishing the role.

The unfortunate thing his career was never what he hoped it to be. That comes across loud and clear in his book.

That was 1 of the reasons I so enjoyed him in Rehearsal for Murder with Robert Preston and Lynn Redgrave. He was in a good tv movie with a first rate cast, a nice mystery and a chance to play soemone else for a change.
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Timeless A-Peel
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 06, 2008 7:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Dandy Forsdyke wrote:
Timeless A-Peel wrote:
Although, to be fair, Patrick's said on various occasions that he should have left when Honor did as well, or should have stopped with the Taras and never done TNA, or that TNA should have gone on longer because they were just starting to gel as a team. I don't think even he knew half the time what he wanted.


True. I think his opinion is confused which might explain why he didn't have a clear vision of what he wanted to do.

When Pat said he should have left with Honor Blackman, I think he meant he would have liked Honor to have carried on, onto film and into colour, not leave with her in 1964 - before the US success of the show. So I think he was still thinking of the same time-frame: 1967.

We also have to remember Patrick was still quite happy to don the bowler after the end of The Avengers and before The New Avengers in TV spots and commercials, and after in guest appearences in American TV shows. He really was "always doing" The Avengers in one way or another! Smile


He's also said the Blackman shows were the best, and he did want to see Cathy Gale on film. Perhaps you're right--he wasn't considering leaving outright. He did have a little mini-breakdown every time he lost a costar, though, if what's he wrote is to be believed. There was always a stint of "But we can't possibly do it without Ian/Honor/Diana/Linda!"

I haven't seen as much of Patrick's other stuff as I'd like. I've seen clips from some of his stuff online, though, and he does seem to play very Steedish roles. His part in A View to a Kill was very Steed, but he's one of my favourite parts of the film, particularly his interaction with Roger Moore (and it's always a treat to see Patrick with horses, because he's so familiar with them and that comes over on screen). In some ways he seemed proud to be associated with the show and Steed, and content to live on that way, but I could see how it would get tiresome after awhile.
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Dandy Forsdyke
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 06, 2008 7:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Timeless A-Peel wrote:
He did have a little mini-breakdown every time he lost a costar, though, if what's he wrote is to be believed. There was always a stint of "But we can't possibly do it without Ian/Honor/Diana/Linda!"


Hmm, I don't think he felt that way about Ian Hendry and Linda Thorson. He certainly adored Honor and Diana. Anyway the series had ended before Linda could leave. He may have done had she left the show... he's a complicated man.
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