In the mid-Sixties, American TV networks had a habit of using British series as summer replacement shows. That's how THE AVENGERS originally came to American TV. Another series I really liked was THE BARON, loosely based on a long series of novels by John Creasey about a reformed thief turned antiques dealer named John Mannering. In the TV version, Mannering (played by Steve Forrest) became a Texan instead of an Englishman, but he still lived in London and was an antiques dealer, only the adventures he became involved in were more like the secret agent yarns that were so popular then. I watched every episode that ABC aired and thoroughly enjoyed them. I don't know how they hold up, but the opening credits and especially the theme song are great. I still get a grin on my face when I hear it.
That music is so sixties TV, isn't it? Don't remember it but it sounds like fun.
The complete series is available on (officially approved) DVD.
This one slipped under my radar. If it was after '66 I woukdn't have seen much TV anyway.
This is not one I ever saw. Creasey, though prolific, wasn't much of a writer style-wise, and I always had the notion that the Baron was something of a Saint knock-off. But the show does look like fun, and you can't find TV music any more '60s than that. (My favorite British TV themes were Laurie Johnson's variations for THE AVENGERS (of course) and Ron Grainer's THE PRISONER...
I think the Toff was more like the Saint, although there are certainly some Saint-like elements in Mannering's background as a thief. I believe the character was originally known as Blue Mask before he became the Baron.
I love the Avengers Theme, too. One of the all-time greats.
Though, as with the MAN FROM U.N.C.L.E. theme, some recordings of it used in the series are better than others. I like the DANGER MAN/SECRET AGENT harpsichord theme as well as the US import song, too...I might've caught THE BARON in repeats...the Kaiser (independent commercial) station in Boston, 56, was usually good for all the ITC they could get their hands on around the turn of the '70s...
I could spend hours on YouTube (and have) watching clips of the opening credits from Sixties TV shows. My favorite of the different versions of the Man From U.N.C.L.E. theme is the one from the first season, and I like the long opening from that season, as well. In fact, I think I'll go watch it right now . . .
I am now going through the complete set of the Baron. I enjoyed the Creasy books (as well as The Toff and Inspector West) and, even though the show only used the name, I enjoyed it.
Also a fan of the themes for The Baron, The Avengers, Secret Agent and--especially--Man In A Suitcase.
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