Must See: The Avengers Must-see TV shows are futuristic classics that shouldn't be missed. Of course, not every must-see is perfect. That's why we've rated them 1-5 on the patented "crunchy goodness" scale.

Title: The Avengers
Date: 1961-1969

Vitals: John Steed is a bowler-wearing secret agent who doesn't seem to have any bosses. He, and a rotating cast of sidekicks, go around defeating evil conspiracies and occasionally battling the Cybernauts, who are pretty much what they sound like.

Famous names: Patrick Macnee, Diana Rigg, Honor Blackman, Ian Hendry, Linda Thorson, Sydney Newman

Crunchy goodness: 3

Most wonderfully dated moments: The sixties fashions, the jazzy music, the charmingly innocent sauciness between John Steed and Emma Peel. It's retro heaven.

Spinoffs/Sequels/Copycats: The New Avengers, featuring Macnee teamed upwith Joanna Lumley and Gareth Hunt. And a 1998 movie, starring Ralph Fiennes and Uma Thurman, which captured all of the cheesiness and none of the fun of the original series.

Design breakthrough: In contrast to Macnee's slightly ironic English gentleman drag, Rigg always wore a collection of skintight catsuits and go-go dresses. Honor Blackman cashed in on her character's trend-setting fetish outfits by recording a duet with Macnee called "Kinky Boots," which was a top 5 hit on the British pop charts in 1964, and charted again in 1990.


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