Friday 18th January 2019

Donald Monat (1928-2018)

Some very sad news has come to me which has caused me to temporarily blow the cobwebs off The Avengers Declassified - that Donald Monat, the wonderful John Steed of the radio series, died last year at the age of 90. Donald was a good friend to me and to this website, to which he gave over many hours to help me write the section about the Sonovision Avengers, back in the day when Declassified was yet to be created and it was exclusively about the Avengers on the Radio. Donald was kind, patient and was always happy to answer my questions. But above even that, he was a brilliant John Steed - and dare I say it, his and David Gooden's and Tony Jay's and Dennis Folbigge's take on the series remains my favourite part of The Avengers. In my book, Donald was every bit Patrick Macnee's equal as Steed; maybe an older-sounding version, but he brought much to the role and made it his own. Each year Donald and his wife June and my wife and I exchanged Christmas cards which probably met on their journeys somewhere above the Atlantic. I'm really sad at this news and wanted to pay tribute to a lovely, talented man and, on behalf of fans of The Avengers and of course myself, I pass our sincere condolences to June and the Monat family.


Donald Monat - March 15th 1928 to September 12th 2018
Remembered with a smile and a tip of the bowler


From the makers of The Avengers Declassified...



Playboys, Spies and Private Eyes - Inspired by ITC (Charity Title)

Dr Brent's Casebook: An Unauthorised Guide to Police Surgeon

Two Against the Underworld: The Complete Unauthorised Guide to The Avengers Series 1

Avengerworld - The Avengers in Our Lives (Charity Title)

Full catalogue at Hidden Tiger

Friday 20th April 2018

The Avengers Declassified... Decommissioned

This website will remain online as an archive, but will no longer be updated

This announcement has been a long time coming as it's something I've mulled over for several years, but I kept putting it to one side, hoping that my feelings about the series and the website would change. Sadly, they haven't done so to any great degree.

Basically, The Avengers has stopped being fun for me - at least writing about and researching it has. I still watch the show occasionally, but it's no longer a true favourite of mine. It no longer goes to the top of the 'to watch' pile and my heart is no longer in my work for the website. Other things have supplanted The Avengers in my affections and fire my enthusiasm in a way that The Avengers used to but no longer does.

I recently wrote an essay for the StudioCanal DVD release of the Series 1 episode Tunnel of Fear, and when I completed and submitted it, I decided that this would be my last word on The Avengers. It felt the right time to make this determination, and to move on to pastures new. 

The Avengerworld book was originally designed as my farewell to Avengers fandom (and an extravagant way of saying thank you to it), but events transpired to keep me tied to the good ship Avengers: when that missing episode was recovered, I knew that I'd need to update the site and also the book Two Against the Underworld (which my friend Richard McGinlay and I proceeded to do) in the light of the find... and then StudioCanal came calling for its DVD release, which was an unexpected privilege and one I felt I couldn't turn down.

In many ways, I feel that I've kept this website going for too long, and have allowed it to become an obligation and a chore, rather than something that I create for the fun of it. That was how it was in the beginning and before it with my previous sites Second Sight - The Avengers Image Archive and Avengers on the Radio. Heady days at TheAvengers.TV with David, Mike, Carlos, Tony and others - that was the real highlight of Avengers webbery for me, a proper socialist collective with people working together and helping each other out with no thought for financial gain.

Besides, my interest - as I'm sure regular readers will have noticed - moved towards writing books a few years ago. Websites are all very well, but they're transitory, can blip out of existence in a second, and can be corrected and updated easily. Books are more permanent and self-contained, and there's no safety net. It's been a rewarding endeavour - not financially, for no-one who self-publishes is in it for the money (which is just as well, as these days books are a very hard sell) but in terms of my self-esteem. I am proud of those books - and less so, of this website, because it never really got near to feeling complete.

The website will remain online, exactly where it is; it just won't be updated from now on. I may even tweak it about, here and there, from time to time, but only if the desire leads me to do so, not out of feelings of obligation. It will remain available as an archive for people to read and hopefully enjoy in all its incomplete glory.

The books will also remain available for the foreseeable future. However, I will be writing no further Avengers books - and can recommend Mike Richardson's Bowler Hats and Kinky Boots as the ultimate guide to the series.

Thanks to all who have helped out during the past nine years, have written pieces for the website or my charity anthologies, or have emailed or spoken to me to pass on kind words about the site. Those efforts and sentiments are hugely appreciated, as are the friendships that I've forged in 19 years as an Avengers webmaster (I fully intend that these will continue unaffected). Thanks to everyone who visited The Avengers Declassified and to anyone who kindly bought a book.

I tip my bowler to you all as I lay it down to rest. Who knows which hat I will be wearing next?

Alan Hayes

To check out the site's nine year history, follow these links...