September 10, 2020

"Goodbye to the indomitable Mrs Peel: Acting legend Diana Rigg..."

"... who starred in The Avengers, was a Bond girl (who actually got to marry 007) and appeared in Game of Thrones dies peacefully at home aged 82" (Daily Mail).

69 comments:

Narr said...

One of a kind.

Narr
RIP

mockturtle said...

As a youth I wanted to be just like Emma Peel.

Mike Sylwester said...

PBS has broadcast three seasons of a dramatization of the life of Queen Victoria.

In the second season, Diana Rigg played the role of the Duchess of Buccleuch, an elderly lady-in-waiting for Queen Victoria. In that role, Rigg was hilarious. I laughed out loud many times.

William said...

She was truly great as Emma Peel. I'm glad that she got another great role in GOT before she died.....It gets lonelier and lonelier when all these bright stars of your youth pass into darkness and silence.

Narayanan said...

She is magnificent - played investigative reporter investigating Oliver Reed in
The Assassination Bureau

The Drill SGT said...

A classy show and a classy lady.

RIP

Howard said...

Will miss her

Big Mike said...

Just when you thought 2020 couldn’t get any worse.

Almaron Dickinson said...

She was a wonderful actress. She and Patrick Macnee were brilliant as a team and made "The Avengers" one of the coolest TV series in the 1960's. RIP Mrs. Peel.

Yancey Ward said...

I was in love with Emma Peel as a pre-teen. The Avengers was one of those shows UHF stations liked to run in syndication that was a bit classier than Gilligan's Island.

The funny thing is this- when I was watching Game of Thrones, I didn't even realize that was Diana Rigg playing Olenna Tyrell (she shows up early in Season 3) until near the end an episode before her character is killed in Season 7. I was scanning the cast of characters for someone else when I spotted her name.

Joe Smith said...

She was no Julie Newmar...

Meow : )

J. Farmer said...

Diana Rigg was fantastic as Emma Peel, though my heart will always belong to Honor Blackman. I loved The Avengers television series, and the 90's film adaptation with Uma Thurman in the Emma Peel role was one of the few I ever walked out on. Peel is my second favorite female spy after Agent 99 from Get Smart.

bbear said...

Wittiest Mrs. Peel line ever (she & Steed were investigating a school for butlers or gentlemen or somesuch): "Half an oaf is better than low-bred."

Today Sir Tom Stoppard is quoted in the Telegraph as saying, ""For half her life Diana was the most beautiful woman in the room, but she was what used to be called a trooper. She went to work with her sleeves rolled up and a smile for everyone. Her talent was luminous".

Ave atque vale Diana...

Mike (MJB Wolf) said...

The ‘60s and ‘70s were a great time to grow up if you like smart brunette women. Miss Peel, Mariann, Mrs McMillan, MTM, Marlo, hmm. Sensing a theme there.

Ken B said...

Sexiest human beings in history:
Jodie Foster
Diana Rigg
Veronica Lake

MikeM said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Bay Area Guy said...

She was great - loved her and her show. RIP

MikeM said...

I enjoyed her in all the roles I happened to see her in but particularly opposite a set shredding George C. Scott in the movie "The Hospital" where she played a sexy nurse cum hippie trying to rescue Scott from a suicidal depression and drag him off to some peaceful mountain.

MacMacConnell said...

Great memories of Diana Riggs, a top drawer lady.

lgv said...

I was in love with Emma Peel. I so envied Patrick Macnee.

J. Farmer said...

@Ken B:

Sexiest human beings in history:
Jodie Foster
Diana Rigg
Veronica Lake


I know beauty is in the eye of the beholder but Jodie Foster?

dustbunny said...

Her talent as Mrs Peel hit the sweet spot of boys falling for her and girls wanting to be her. She was the definition of indomitable.

Michael said...

Like three days ago, my wife and I finished watching the complete CD set of the Emma Peel Avengers. Somehow this feels like our fault. What a presence, and what a pro!

David-2 said...

She was so good - and sexy - in The Avengers. And also very very good (somewhat less sexy but she definitely still had it) in Bleak House.

And she compiled a fairly funny book, No Turn Unstoned of bad reviews of actors and actresses and productions and such, including in it a very embarrassing review of her performance on stage, which included a nude scene: John Simon wrote "built like a brick basilica with insufficient flying buttresses".

(TBH, I'm still not exactly sure what he meant by that, but whatever image it provokes in your mind, it isn't complimentary.)

Michael said...

Bummer

Mark Jones said...

She was one of the early influences on my taste in women as a child. Dark haired, athletic, exotic (to my ears) accent, and dangerous. Yes, please!

Readering said...

Stoppard quote in comment above points to her position as leading stage actress for many decades.

tcrosse said...

I've noticed that British actresses allow themselves to age gracefully. Maybe it's because British show-biz has jobs for them.

Howard said...

Impressed JFarmer likes Pussy Galore. Best Bond Girl ever. Plus she can pic a PA-28-140

Butkus51 said...

Theres a show called Detectorists. About metal detectorists in Great Britain. Very calming pleasant light comedy/drama show. Main character is that guy from the UK office.........the guys who plays Dwight in the US version. His wife in the show is Diana Riggs daughter....dead ringer.......and Diana Rigg makes a few appearances. Twas a good show.

Butkus51 said...

yeah, and for the record, Emma Peel and Catwoman ruined me forever.

Christy said...

I wanted to grow up to be Mrs. Peel, so I studied Math and Martial Arts.

John henry said...

Whst everyone else said, I don't have much to add.

My goal as a teen was to marry her.

I also liked her (and everyone else) in detectorists.

She was a fantastic Lady Dedlock in Bleak House.

John Henry

TickTock said...

@William
Yes

traditionalguy said...

Diana was all woman and out of my class. But would have loved spending time with her.

Just an old country lawyer said...

May she rest in peace and rise in glory.

Readering said...

Goodbye also to Shere Hite.

RBE said...

Her style and many other British ladies of the 60's...Patty Harrison, Jane Asher, Mary Quant, etc... defined my style as a teenager and all through my adulthood. I was never as cool!

J. Farmer said...

@Howard:

Impressed JFarmer likes Pussy Galore. Best Bond Girl ever. Plus she can pic a PA-28-140

My favorite Bond girl by a mile.

exiledonmainstreet, green-eyed devil said...

mockturtle said...
As a youth I wanted to be just like Emma Peel.

9/10/20, 11:14 AM

I also wanted to be just like her. So did my grade school friends.

Now the admired role model is - CardiB.

We've regressed.

Birkel said...

No love for the Queen of Thirns role in Game of Thrones?
She was great right to the end.

Ken B said...

Farmer
Jodie Foster just bends my mind like none other. I find it difficult to watch her movies as I can feel a reaction every time the camera cuts to her. Uncanny.
Honor Blackman was a great beauty for sure. And she was 39 when she made Goldfinger!

Ken B said...

“ Emma Peel and Catwoman ruined me forever.”

We must be part of the same age cohort. Toss in Ginger.

Chubfuddler said...

I saw her twice in London in "Abelard and Heloise," the play that occasioned Simon's snark about her flying buttresses. To a 20-year-old obsessed with her since "The Avengers," her buttresses seemed perfectly proportioned, although you had to try to make them out in the dim blue lighting reserved for nude scenes during the "Hair" era. Her co-star, Keith Michell of "Six Wives of Henry VIII," also appeared nude, but I have no memory at all of his physical architecture.

Lars Porsena said...

A great pair of legs and high cheekbones can get you a long way.

tcrosse said...

Rachael Stirling inherited some of her Mom's looks.

sleipner said...

Farewell Miss Peel, onto the big adventure!

madAsHell said...

I know beauty is in the eye of the beholder but Jodie Foster?

Banging a lesbian? It's not my eye that is beholding!

YoungHegelian said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
YoungHegelian said...

A very different kind of drama that Diana Rigg starred in in the 70s was In This House of Brede.

You don't have to be a mackerel snapper to like it, but no doubt it helps.

libertariansafetyguy said...

She was absolutely masterful as Olenna Tyrell on Game of Thrones. A alpha female matriarch for the ages.

Paul Snively said...

The character of Mrs. Peel did a staggering amount to advance what I believe was a definitively positive perspective on "women's liberation" circa the mid-1960s: she was ferociously intelligent and unafraid to let it be known, sexy without being a tramp, and gave no hint of wanting to be "more like men" in any way, shape, or form. As others have said, I'd have loved to have met her, if I weren't so painfully aware of how déclassé it is to stand there with your jaw on the floor.

Mark said...

M. Appeal.

Didn't know that she was oppressed. No pussy hat for her. Even if she had a cat suit.

tcrosse said...

Behind the Telegraph's paywall, David Suchet reminisces about playing opposite her in Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf on the London Stage. Here it is

Leora said...

I remember an interview with her post Emma Peel where she said she couldn't wait for her jaw line to drop so she could play character parts. I don't think it ever did.

The Godfather said...

Diana Rigg in the nude? And I missed it? Damn!

Original Mike said...

Had to watch Emma Peel every week.

Jodie Foster?

J Melcher said...

Thanks to all the commenters who offer examples of Riggs's RANGE. Detectorists and House of Brede, especially.

About the only opportunity she missed (surely it occurred to someone to offer; she must have turned it down) was to be a companion on "Dr Who".

J. Farmer said...

@Ken B:

Jodie Foster just bends my mind like none other. I find it difficult to watch her movies as I can feel a reaction every time the camera cuts to her. Uncanny.

I understand. I have a similar fascination with, another Bond girl, Grace Jones.

Perhaps seeing Foster in Taxi Driver left a lasting impression. It was released before I was born, and I didn't see it until I was almost an adult. The Jodie Foster I grew up with was The Accused, Silence of the Lambs, Little Man Tate, and Contact. In all of them, I'd describe her look as Ms. Plain Jane USA.

@Birkel:

No love for the Queen of Thirns role in Game of Thrones?
She was great right to the end.


Agree. Her deathbed confession regarding Joffrey was a brutal exclamation point at the end of her storyline.

Christy said...

But she did play a bad guy on Doctor Who.

Joe Smith said...

In these days of woker-than-woke Hollywood, we will never again see a character named anything close to 'Pussy Galore.'

As for Ms. Foster, sure she plays for the other team, but she is still a serious looker in the hot, girl-next-door department.

Big Mike said...

I liked Rigg as Adela Bradley in The Mrs. Bradley Mysteries on PBS. I was always sorry that there were only four episodes. By then she was sixty, and it showed, but she could still dominate a set.

(@J Melcher, Diana played one of Dr. Who's nastiest villians in "The Crimson Horror." The Doctor is lucky to have survived.)

stephen cooper said...

Nobody (well almost nobody, anyway) cares what I think, and I am fine with that.

But here is what I think, if you are someone who cares:

Most women are, at some point in their lives, Bond girls.

How do I know that?

I know that because I like women.

Actually, most women are cute enough to eventually find a guy who is much better than Bond, James Bond, our latter-day diminished version of poor Casanova, who was himself a very very diminished version of my peers - Dionysius, Apollo, Jupiter, or at least my peers the men who created those silly idols.

And then there are lots of women who are not all that cute, which is why God created an almost overwhelming sex drive in men, so that even women who sort of look a lot less pretty than other women are still beautiful to someone. If you are a woman with many flaws - don't feel bad --- at least you are a woman .... think about it, lots of guys with lots of flaws go through life without ever once knowing what it is like to have someone think they are physically attractive, and very few women go through life that way (that was the entire plot point of 17 seasons of the viciously misandrist Big Bang Theory, by the way)... you are lucky, if you are female, in this sense: "living a life all the way through without once knowing you are considered attractive probably will not happen to you, because you were lucky enough to be born female." For women, it takes an awful lot of flaws for you to go through life that way (that way defined as the horror of going through life with almost no sexual market place value - remember, that was the main plot point of the most popular sitcom of the last 10 years). For that sad event to happen, it takes many more flaws than most women reading this have had, or will ever have. Trust me on that.

Even in the old folks' homes, the old men think they are lucky if the old ladies pay attention to them. Even Mama Cass was a sex symbol of a sort.

That being said, don't feel sorry for yourself, whoever you are.
I am not in a good mood tonight so I am not gonna write the next few paragraphs ...
(actually, I am always in a good mood. that was a rhetorical trick. It is a blessing to be born a woman, it is an equal blessing to be born a man. You do the math).

On Her Majesty's Secret Service was a deeply flawed film, but it was much better than many similar films.

Rory said...

"Jodie Foster?"

Going back into the 60s, she was an ideal playmate for prepubescent males. I was a junior in college when Reagan was shot. When we found out Hinckley was obsessed with Foster, none of the guys I knew were surprised.

Rory said...

RIP.

Still around, and older than Diana: Gina Lollobrigida (93), Julie Newmar (87), Joan Collins (87), Barbara Feldon (87), Sophia Loren (85), Brigitte Bardot (85), Ursula Andress (84); Shirley Eaton (83); Jane Fonda (82); Claudia Cardinale (82)

stephen cooper said...

Uber-bonus points if you remember which episode of the Big Bang Theory one of the Stepin Fetchit self-hating dudes referred to Dianna Rigg as if she were a goddess.

She was a very good actress, by the way.

stephen cooper said...

Because I am in a good mood tonight, I am gonna waste your time just enough to let you know that by far the best James Bond film (in my humble opinion) was the Casino Royale film, with Ursula Andress in the Dianna Rigg role. (Ursula Andress was, and is, a great actress, but that was a role God designed for Diana Rigg). Check it you, it is really really good.

Watch it with someone who likes you. Enjoy life.

J. Farmer said...

@Stephen Cooper:

And then there are lots of women who are not all that cute...

If you wanna be happy for the rest of your life
Never make a pretty woman your wife


Or...

Harry: No man can be friends with a woman he finds attractive. He always wants to have sex with her.
Sally: So you are saying that a man can be friends with a woman he finds unattractive?
Harry: No, you pretty much want to nail them too.

stephen cooper said...

J. Farmer ----

commenters like you are why I read this comment section.