September 19, 2019


This week marks a special anniversary in the world of Spy Vibe: the cult-classic TV series Randall and Hopkirk (Deceased) made its debut 50 years ago on September 21st, 1969! This unique show was created by Dennis Spooner (The Avengers, Fireball XL5, Stingray, Doctor Who, Thunderbirds, The Baron, Man in a Suitcase, The Champions, Department S, UFO, The New Avengers) and produced by Monty Berman (The Saint, The Baron, The Champions, Department S), who together took ITC adventure into wonderful new territory by mixing elements of crime drama, action, humor, fantasy, and the paranormal. UK distributor Network has posted a special celebration, stating "In the 1960s, no other TV company did crime drama like ITC. In fact, few British series of the time boasted the Hollywood-like gleam and ambition of Man In A Suitcase, The Saint, The Champions, The Baron or Department S. But whatever the cultural wallop of those shows, it’s another, one that this year marks its 50th anniversary, that has perhaps endured more than any of them. Randall & Hopkirk (Deceased), which debuted on ITV on 21st September 1969, was markedly different to its ITC stablemates. Not only was it proudly fantastical, it was also killingly funny, and where most of ITC’s other shows aimed for a seductive fantasy of transatlantic sophistication, Randall & Hopkirk presented a scuzzier and more recognisably real world. Key to Randall & Hopkirk’s uniqueness in the ITC canon, was the casting of Mike Pratt. He may have only been 37 when he played Jeff Randall, but he already had the deep-grooved face lines of someone 20 years older. Randall seemed to be someone more at home in the grungier, fag-stained world of Public Eye than a series about a private dick partnered up with a crime-solving ghost. More ABC than ITC.?" More info (and Blu-ray Discs) at Network. Spy Vibers can explore the series even further at Randall and Hopkirk (Declassified), where you can learn about the making of the show, its cast, crew, and even a detailed study into the filming locations.

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