East of Constantinople, West of Shanghai


Diana Rigg, 1938-2020

I have just learned about the death of Dame Diana Rigg, that was Emma Peel in The Avengers, without a doubt the actress and the character that have had the strongest and longest lasting influence on me, under every respect.

Today she’s mostly remembered for her role in Game of Thrones (my goodness!) but she had a long and respected career in the Royal Shakespeare Company, and was the star in the proto-steampunk Assassination Bureau, Ltd. and in a very funny horror movie featuring Vincent Price (Theater of Blood).
She also was, of course, Mrs James Bond.

http://www.kobal-collection.com Title: ASSASSINATION BUREAU, THE ¥ Pers: RIGG, DIANA / DOBTCHEFF, VERNON ¥ Year: 1968 ¥ Dir: DEARDEN, BASIL ¥ Ref: ASS002AE ¥ Credit: [ PARAMOUNT / THE KOBAL COLLECTION ] ASSASSINATION BUREAU, THE (1968) , January 1, 1968 Photo by Kobal/PARAMOUNT/The Kobal Collection/WireImage.com To license this image (10517504), contact The Kobal Collection/WireImage.com

I feel like I lost a much loved relation.


The Anti-Damsel Blogathon: Mrs Emma Peel

anti-damsel-dietrichShe was my first crush, back when I was something like eight years old, and she’s certainly one of the strongest influences on my intellectual development (if any).
Emma Peel, as portrayed by Dame Diana Rigg, is one of the icons of the 1960s, a sex symbol, and one of the earliest strong, empowered female leads in television entertainment.

And so, because as of today the Anti-Damsel Blogathon (hosted by The Movies Silently and by The Last Drive In) is on, I am posting about Emma Peel. Continue reading


You are not an assassin, you are a critic

I1Ww9Two nights back, in a bout of nostalgia, I spent two hours watching, yet again, The Assassination Bureau, Limited, a fun movie from 1969.
The movie, one of the many proto-steampunk flicks that were produced between the ’60s and the ’70s, was directed by Basil Dearden, and is based on a Jack London novel that was left unfinished at the author’s death.

Whereas London’s book was intended as a straight thriller with philosophical underpinnings, the Dearden movie plays as a comedy, and a wonderful comedy it is. Continue reading