The Avengers does wrestling? Well, this is different…
There’s also a substantial difference in the interplay between the two leads. Steed’s partnered with Venus Smith in this one, and Steed plays Venus all the way through this story – whereas Keel had his own agenda, and Cathy shares with him a wariness of Steed, Venus has a guilelessness that is ruthlessly taken advantage of.
Steed’s conduct in this one is deeply questionable in other respects too: there’s some apparent casual sexual harassment, taking his creepy womanising in previous episodes to a new level.
Meanwhile Venus even ends up falling for the villain of the piece – this is a tragedy for her that is glossed over quickly – due to a fortunate deficiency in holding grudges on her part. She is simply not a player but instead a pawn in Steed’s game, and even the bad guy fails assumes a level of craftiness that she proves simply not to possess. She got it bad and that ain’t good.
On the other hand, Avengers episodes in which Steed’s partner sings Ellington? This is the first Venus Smith episode I’ve ever seen, and while she doesn’t seem a match for him (would it be cruel to say she’s even less smart than Tara King*?) if we’re going to get her doing a couple of numbers with the Dave Lee** trio in each story she’s in, then she’ll do as long as Cathy’s back next week.
* Yes, obviously it would. Sorry.
** I knew I’d heard that name somewhere before. Dave Lee played the ‘Angus Prune tune’ and all the music on I’m Sorry I’ll Read That Again (oh, and TW3).