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2.18 - Box of Tricks

 
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Rate 'Box Of Tricks'
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Total Votes : 7

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Rhonda
Winged Avenger


Joined: 19 Jan 2010
Posts: 692
Location: A town, UK

PostPosted: Thu Sep 12, 2013 4:52 am    Post subject: 2.18 - Box of Tricks Reply with quote

Venus Smith episode, UK 19 January 1963.

An interesting plot; 5/10.
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Ron
Last Watched : Death A La Carte


Last edited by Rhonda on Mon Sep 23, 2013 6:06 am; edited 1 time in total
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Frankymole
A Touch of Brimstone


Joined: 01 Sep 2008
Posts: 4024
Location: Carmadoc research establishment

PostPosted: Sun Sep 22, 2013 9:15 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

A real stinker. My review:

http://www.theavengers.tv/forever/gale1-17vr.htm

As others point out, the "trick" is obvious and the story just falls flat, because there is no way that the magician could be involved and not be arrested after the second murder.

The Avenged?: A NATO committee, apparently held in the General's own home. Were they short of sets this week?

Diabolical Masterminds?: A quack "healer" who relies on his dupes having an IQ less than their shoe size. And what a bright idea, transmitting the recorded secrets (from underground?) mere yards away from the murder scene, whilst playing them on a loudspeaker. Possibly the least lethal "killer" ever; after the first ten minutes his "traps" are miserably bad, and when he has a chance to shoot Steed, he just backs out of the room and closes the door. Eh?

The Avengers?: Venus in overdrive. In the final scene she seems to be gabbling in a race against the clock, lecturing Steed on how he could have improved his counter-intelligence work. Steed tries to shut her up by asking her to dance (it doesn't work).

Umbrella, Charm and a Bowler Hat?: Steed's uncharacteristic cover role, an overenthusiastic masseur, doesn't allow much time for the "real" Steed to shine but he's amusing as a hypochondriac millionaire. Venus' shrill songs and jerky dancing ensure it is not only Dr Gallam who has an urge to do away with her. At least they're short songs.

Bizarre?: Cosmic rays and crystals interesting to see "New Age" ideas so early; perhaps the 60s are starting to swing?

On Target? (Score): Loses a bowler for Venus and the parade of anonymous/interchangeable blondes, plot "twist" visible a mile off, inept antagonists, desperate sets, and just general ugh-ness. Okay, I give it half a bowler for Steed's millionaire act. 1/10.
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Darren
Site Admin


Joined: 01 Sep 2008
Posts: 1798
Location: UK

PostPosted: Wed Oct 02, 2013 12:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

2/10

I like Venus but this episode doesn't really pull me in (I always confuse it with an Adam Adamant Lives episodes with similar backstage shenanigans). It's got Kim Mills shabby direction. It's one of those episodes where you get some dispirit locations and they don't really connect. It's got some creepy bits. Maybe if it had decent direction I'd care more for it but the Mills factor is so off putting.
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Rhonda
Winged Avenger


Joined: 19 Jan 2010
Posts: 692
Location: A town, UK

PostPosted: Thu Oct 03, 2013 7:53 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think it is a feasible plot to use a bugging device and a gullible daughter, who is only trying to help her ill father, to get military secrets. The reason this one gets fewer points from me than the other Venus episodes is simply that the way girls are apparently prepared to risk their lives by doing a magician's trick where people have been killed does not seem believable. Also why were the police never called - it's a plot weakness. I like the character Venus in all of her episodes; in this one I like the way she annoys Steed a little when she opens the parcel and the final scene on the dance floor. So I still like this one and just accept a few weaknesses!
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Ron
Last Watched : Death A La Carte
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Topaze
Nutshell


Joined: 11 Feb 2014
Posts: 49

PostPosted: Tue Mar 04, 2014 8:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote




Venus and Steed Very Happy
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Allard
The Ministry


Joined: 01 Sep 2008
Posts: 1611
Location: The Netherlands

PostPosted: Thu Oct 11, 2018 9:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Just viewed this episodes for the second time, (first time was years ago!). It was much better than I remembered it, not that it is a very good episode, but it is not as bad as it's reputation would one have believe. There is a plot hole or two, but the problem mainly is that the story is quite boring, it seems that a bunch of ideas were stuffed in one episode without any of it being able to captivate the viewer. But it does build up tension a bit now and then and has a few funny moments. It remains one of the poorer episodes, but does not deserve to labelled as a train wreck of an episode.
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