Did you know?
Sylvia was asked to write a short story for The Sunday People newspaper incorporating a THUNDERBIRDS sequence. This was in the ’90’s and was obviously not for her usual audience. Sylvia said she accepted the offer without a clue how to bring the THUNDERBIRDS characters into a real life story. She finally found a way of doing this and wrote a short story about an estranged married couple who meet to discuss their impending divorce. In the background the television is showing a repeat of a THUNDERBIRDS episode and it brings back memories to the couple of happier times. As the THUNDERBIRDS theme tune fills their uneasy silence they start to realise that they perhaps can re-capture some of the magic of that era together.
Robert Vaughn … Harry Rule (52 episodes, 1972-1974)
Nyree Dawn Porter … Contessa Caroline di Contini / … (51 episodes, 1972-1974)
Tony Anholt … Paul Buchet (42 episodes, 1972-1974)
Gus … Harry's Dog / … (26 episodes, 1972-1973)
Yasuko Nagazumi … Suki (15 episodes, 1972-1973)
Anthony Chinn … Chino (13 episodes, 1972-1973)
Michael Da Costa … Cafe Owner / … (3 episodes, 1972-1973)
Sherwood Price … Carter / … (3 episodes, 1972-1973)
Derren Nesbitt … Brad Huron / … (2 episodes, 1972-1973)
Georgia Brown … Ilona Tabori / … (2 episodes, 1973)
Prentis Hancock … William Arthur MacKay / … (2 episodes, 1973)
Shane Rimmer … Vickers / … (2 episodes, 1973)
Jill Townsend … Monica Davies (2 episodes, 1973)
Peter Cellier … Auctioneer / … (2 episodes, 1972-1973)
George Innes … Luigi / … (2 episodes, 1972-1973)
John Herrington … Official / … (2 episodes, 1973)
Izabella Telezynska … Ingrid – Gardner's Secretary / … (2 episodes, 1972-1973)
Phil Woods … Colson / … (2 episodes, 1973-1974)
Jacqueline Stanbury … Car Hire Receptionist / … (2 episodes, 1972-1973)
Roger Lloyd-Pack … Paparazzo / … (2 episodes, 1972-1973)
Anthony Stamboulieh … Yanos (2 episodes, 1972-1973)
Rudolf Barry … Attendant (2 episodes, 1973)
Bert Fortell … Manager (2 episodes, 1973)
David Suchet … Det. at End / … (2 episodes, 1973)
Series 1, Episode 1
Sep. 29, 1972
2,000 Ft to Die.
The Protectors are three independently wealthy private detectives – American Harry Rule, living in London, Caroline who was married to an Italian Count and Paris-based art expert Paul Buchet. They are approached by Freddie Reiwald, a scientist working on a means of perfecting synthetic gold, whose four colleagues have all died in mysterious circumstances. Freddie is about to perform a stunt parachute jump with a man called Ransome, and the killers have abducted Ransome's girl-friend, threatening to murder her unless he lets Freddie die. The Protectors must find her …
Series 1, Episode 2
Oct. 6, 1972
The Protectors are hired by millionaire business man Bela Karolian to spring his younger brother Sandor, who was imprisoned on trumped-up charges. Although the prison break is successfully accomplished it becomes apparent that Bela only wants Sandor back for one reason – to kill him and thereby stop him from exposing his elder brother as a large scale drug dealer.
Series 1, Episode 3
Oct. 13, 1972
See No Evil
A senator investigating organized crime in Rome,with a view to catching gang boss 'Il Gufo' or The Owl,is abducted and on release planted with photos which will incriminate him. The only witness to the abduction is an elderly blind man. Caroline goes in search of him but finds herself face to face with Il Gufo himself.
Series 1, Episode 4
Oct. 20, 1972
Brad Huron has made a bet with his friend – that he will be able to vanish off the face of the earth and nobody will be able to detect his whereabouts. He asks the Protectors to help him accomplish this but Harry refuses. Caroline,however,is keen to prove a point and goes on the run with Brad. Then Brad's father tells Harry that his son is a dangerous paranoiac with murderous tendencies and Caroline is in danger.
Series 1, Episode 5
Oct. 27, 1972
Ceremony for the Dead
President Medina has come for urgent medical treatment in the Mediterranean and his wife fears that his political enemies will use the opportunity to abduct him. Harry arranges for decoys to impersonate the president and his wife whilst Medina is smuggled ashore secretly but clearly somebody has got wind of the plan as the ambulance carrying Medina to hospital is hi-jacked.
Series 1, Episode 6
Nov. 3, 1972
It Was All Over in Leipzig
In investigating the brains behind a plot to overthrow an island government the Protectors are joined by Jim Palmer,an old flame of Caroline. He suspects the chief plotter is night club owner Adam Markos on whose premises guns are found but Harry believes that Jim is leading Caroline in the wrong direction and has his own suspicions as to the true culprit behind the plan.
Series 1, Episode 7
Nov. 10, 1972
The Quick Brown Fox
The West German government ask the Protectors' help to trace the mysterious benefactor providing pensions for five former Nazis. Prime suspect is wealthy Hans Keller and Caroline intercepts a letter from him,bearing only the words The Quick Brown Fox Jumped Over the Lazy Dog. This proves to be a code leading to the source of the pensions but Keller abducts Caroline before she can get there.
Series 1, Episode 8
Nov. 17, 1972
Caroline's friend Irena is swindled out of the possession of a twelfth century icon by Alan Sutherland,a suave con-man who preys on women. Caroline buys back the icon at an auction and, joined by Harry posing as a millionaire, they devise a con trick of their own to play on Sullivan,which involves his putting up eighty five thousand pounds of his own for possession of a supposedly priceless ring.
Series 1, Episode 9
Nov. 24, 1972
Whilst being engaged to protect Frank Dilling, a vital witness in a corruption case,Harry and Caroline are involved in a car crash. Harry wakes up in hospital,where he visited by a police inspector, who asks him about Dilling's location so that the police may guard him. However the whole situation has been manufactured and the man is a bogus cop,anxious to silence Dilling and Harry must go after him and stop him.
Series 1, Episode 10
Dec. 1, 1972
A Kind of Wild Justice
Harry is the target of a failed assassination attempt by Kate Lindermann, whose gangster father he helped bring to justice and who died in prison. She believes her father was innocent and that Harry framed him. In order for her to learn the truth, Harry arranges for Kate to meet two former associates of her father, only to discover that the so-called attempt on his life was a set-up and he has been led into a trap.
Series 1, Episode 11
Dec. 8, 1972
Balance of Terror
The Protectors are assigned to locate Professor Schelpin, a scientist who has defected from Russia to the West. In fact he surfaces at a conference where he declares his intention to demonstrate the evils of germ warfare, before disappearing again. The Protectors discover that he has a phial of germ warfare toxin, which he plans to release on the anniversary of the Hiroshima bombing and must be stopped.
Series 1, Episode 12
Dec. 15, 1972
Paul is taken prisoner by a crook named Charlie,who connects him to a time bomb,which he will detonate unless Harry and Caroline steal a consignment of valuable jewels for which they are acting as couriers. A reluctant Harry makes the switch of the packet of jewels but,arriving at Paul's prison,finds Charlie dead and the bomb still ticking.
Series 1, Episode 13
Dec. 29, 1972
The Numbers Game
On the trail of runaway Susan Crediton,the Protectors find that she is involved in a strange numbers game,taking down the registration plate numbers of cars,one of which is owned by Laurence Savage,a noted heart surgeon. The cars are used to smuggle heroin and,after trailing Savage,Harry arrives in Spain to confront the boss of the organization.
Series 1, Episode 14
Jan. 5, 1973
For the Rest of Your Natural…
Caroline is taken prisoner by escaped murderer Colin Grant, a man whom she helped to imprison. She is taken to Grant's hide-out where he has assembled a mock court-room,with himself as prosecutor and cardboard cut-out figures as jurors to decide if Caroline deserves to live. As the other Protectors hunt for her,she comes to see that Grant is playing out the events of the death of his mother,the cause of his insanity.
Series 1, Episode 15
Jan. 12, 1973
The Protectors are asked to keep a watch on the body of recently deceased robber Ralph Corder, in the hopes that the news of his death will flush out his former associates. Indeed two of them,Robard and Mason,turn up,to convince themselves that Corder is actually dead,Robard actually approaching Harry for the news.Mason is photographed with a hidden camera,entering Corder's house and both men are trailed by the Protectors to lead them to the loot.
Series 1, Episode 16
Jan. 19, 1973
A Matter of Life and Death
Investigating a suspicious death in North Africa Harry is mistaken for a drug smuggler and asked to take a consignment to Malta. Here he learns that the operation is organized by Australian James Leroy Mallory, who is also running an illegal trade in blood plasma. Harry is joined by Caroline, who poses as a client in order to meet Mallory. Unfortunately he discovers who she is and the other Protectors have to come to her rescue.
Series 1, Episode 17
Jan. 26, 1973
The Big Hit
Following the murders of two members of the Protectors in New York and Japan and an attempt to kill Paul,it is apparent that somebody is out to eliminate the Protectors organization. Next,Harry is abducted by the henchmen of Jason Howard,who is the man behind the killings. He is taken to a factory owned by Howard,where he is told that he will be crushed to death unless he supplies the names and locations of all members of the Protectors.
Series 1, Episode 18
Feb. 2, 1973
One and One Makes One
The Protectors are out to rescue Bennett, a Canadian agent in possession of American-Canadian defence plans,who has been captured by the Russian Shkoder and taken to a clinic in Paris. After faking a car accident the Protectors gain access to the clinic and locate Bennett. However they must work out if it is Bennett himself or a Russian decoy made to resemble him through the use of plastic surgery.
Series 1, Episode 19
Feb. 9, 1973
In a story which unfolds in reverse,Harry is alone on an unpiloted plane and we see how he got there. He was abducted by Colin Foster,who blames Harry for his brother's death. Foster flew the plane to take-off but then he parachuted out,leaving Harry ,who has no pilot skills,to require Paul's on the ground assistance to talk him down.
Series 1, Episode 20
Feb. 16, 1973
The Protectors are involved in ling gang but it all goes wrong. The gang escapes and Paul is left temporarily blinded. The gang,aware of Harry's association with Paul,employ Vickers,another American,to impersonate him in order to get the sightless Paul to give him as much information as he can about the Protectors,in particular Caroline.
Series 1, Episode 21
Feb. 23, 1973
… With a Little Help from My Friends
Harry is appointed as the bodyguard for a visiting Middle Eastern president but his ex-wife Laura turns up in a frantic state. The president's political opponent Kahan has had the Rule's son Johnny kidnapped and he will be harmed unless Harry shoots the president. A charade follows in which Harry appears to do as he is ordered and Caroline then kills Harry.
Series 1, Episode 22
Mar. 2, 1973
Harry is celebrating his birthday at Caroline's house but whilst she is out shopping,an injured fugitive turns up. He is Douglas Perston,a South American diplomat being pursued by his political rivals,who intend to kill him. In protecting him Harry also becomes the hunted so it is a good job that Caroline gave him a shotgun as a birthday present.
Series 1, Episode 23
Mar. 9, 1973
Club owner George Dixon asks the Protectors to guard his niece Chrissie,the key witness in a murder trial after a killing at his club. However she is less than keen to be protected and when she disappears and is linked to a bullion robbery,two of whose perpetrators are shot,her relationship with the third man is called into question.
Series 1, Episode 24
Mar. 16, 1973
It Could Be Practically Anywhere on the Island
Ditzy American tourist Linda McCall is on holiday in Malta when her pet poodle is stolen. The thieves are Felix Da Costa and his girlfriend Mary Laroche who intend to use the dog in a plan to smuggle a secret microfilm off the island. However,by the time that Linda has enlisted Harry's help in retrieving her pooch the dog has swallowed something that makes it the centre of an island-wide dog hunt.
Series 1, Episode 25
Mar. 23, 1973
The First Circle
Unhinged by his experiences fighting in the war in Vietnam,Colonel John Hunter goes berserk at a disused air-base,killing security men whom he imagines to be the Vietcong. Whilst the police want to shoot him,his wife asks Harry,who knew him,to don an American uniform and talk him into giving himself up. However Hunter's deranged state of mind puts himself and Harry in jeopardy.
Series 1, Episode 26
Mar. 30, 1973
A Case for the Right
In Rome Harry and Caroline are approached to deliver a case to Prince Carpiano at his villa but its contents are such that they have to fight off two attempts to obtain it. Then they realise that it is carrying a bomb; they have been used as decoys whilst another courier takes the genuine article to the prince. In fact its contents are the funding for a proposed right wing coup devised by the prince. The Protectors must stop him.
Series 2, Episode 1
Sep. 21, 1973
The Protectors are approached by Laura Sutton,who is afraid that her brother Jimmy has been recruited to work for Quin,an internationally known ruthless mercenary whose only concern is money. Harry travels to Spain in search of Quin and ends up in a face to face confrontation with him.
Series 2, Episode 2
Sep. 28, 1973
The Protectors are in Copenhagen, where their services are required by a wealthy widow, Madame Andersen. Her young daughter Eva has been kidnapped and is being held to ransom in a disused fort. Harry agrees to act as the bagman and delivers the ransom to the abductors. However, things do not go according to plan.
Series 2, Episode 3
Oct. 5, 1973
In Venice there has been a daring robbery,the spoils being a priceless art collection. The Protectors learn that the robbers are a terrorist gang who aim to sell their prize to the highest bidder in order to buy armaments for their cause. Helped by the river police Harry determines to thwart the gang.
Series 2, Episode 4
Oct. 12, 1973
The Last Frontier
Irena Gayevska is a young Russian scientist who is anxious to defect to the West and to marry her boy-friend there. Because of her skills she is a valuable defector and the Protectors are assigned to smuggle her over the border. Inevitably her absence is detected,leading to a pursuit by the Soviet forces.
Series 2, Episode 5
Oct. 19, 1973
Baubles, Bangles and Beads
Following a jewel theft in Denmark, a con artist named Bergen is responsible for double-crossing a number of people. The swindled parties want revenge and seize Bergen's daughter, Kate, who is unaware of what has been happening and has played no part in the heist itself. The Protectors are engaged to rescue her but Caroline is also endangered.
Series 2, Episode 6
Oct. 26, 1973
The Protectors are hired to combat industrial espionage after it becomes apparent that somebody is leaking information from a cleaning products factory. All the necessary precautions are put into play but nevertheless information from boardroom meetings is still getting out,pointing to an employee as the culprit. Harry decides to set a trap to hoist the traitor with their own petard.
Series 2, Episode 7
Nov. 2, 1973
Caroline undertakes a solo assignment on behalf of wealthy Cedric Parton. His son Caspar is living in Venice and is making a number of very considerable withdrawals from his bank account,all of which are in favour of somebody called George Milworth. On the face of it it would appear that Cedric is being blackmailed by George but when Caroline arrives,there is no George to be seen and the motive turns out to be wholly different.
Series 2, Episode 8
Nov. 9, 1973
Wam: Part 1
Monica Davies is cut out of her father's will for her behaviour and sends him a letter to say that she is about to come into a large amount of money nevertheless. The trail leads the Protectors to Austria where Monica is involved in a kidnap plot whereby a number of skiers are unknowingly held to ransom at the top of a mountain and the authorities are only able to guess the terrorist's identity from their voice.
Series 2, Episode 9
Nov. 16, 1973
Wam: Part 2
The holidaymakers are released after the ransom is paid and the Protectors join forces with Inspector Luhrs to try and work out which of the people in the party may have been involved in the terrorist group. Having done this they also have to find the possible link with Monica's letter and the extent of her involvement.
Series 2, Episode 10
Nov. 23, 1973
The poorly Mrs. Douglas enlists the aid of the Protectors after her young son Stephen is caught apparently smuggling a large amount of drugs in his back pack. When Harry goes to see Stephen in a Spanish jail the boy refuses to help himself but Harry is convinced that he is under the influence of Raphael Santana,the real drugs baron,and sets out to prove the link between the two.
Series 2, Episode 11
Nov. 30, 1973
A dissident Russian author is smuggled out of Russia into Britain,along with the manuscript of his book,which is severely critical of the Communists' political regime. Harry is hired to look after him but a pro-Communist group,anxious to burn the manuscript,come after and capture both men,requiring the intervention of Caroline and Paul.
Series 2, Episode 12
Dec. 7, 1973
Harry is amazed when an old friend of his whom he had assumed to be dead turns up in London. The man's 'death' was actually staged and is linked to a complicated and lucrative insurance fraud .This,in turn, leads Harry and Caroline to Venice,where the man is killed,this time for real.He has,however,left behind a letter which the Protectors must understand to scupper the deadly scam.
Series 2, Episode 13
Dec. 14, 1973
The Protectors are hired by the Hungarian actress Ilona Tabori, who wants them to help her take her father's body through the Iron Curtain and back to his natal village, where it was his wish that he should be buried. The funeral is successfully accomplished but Harry has had misgivings about this assignment all along and he could be proved right as it transpires that Ilona has another agenda to the one for which she first hired them.
Series 2, Episode 14
Dec. 21, 1973
Harry is pleased to meet up again with an old college friend of his,Zeke,who is playing jazz piano in a local night club. Unfortunately Harry is unaware that Zeke's sudden re-entry back into his life is no coincidence.In actual fact Zeke is being blackmailed by mobsters with whom he has got into debt into setting Harry up as a target for his enemies. Will Zeke be able to go through with it or will he save his old friend from his fate?
Series 2, Episode 15
Dec. 28, 1973
In Venice the Protectors come to the aid of an old friend of Caroline, Lena Hayden, an investigative journalist. She has reason to believe that a supposedly respectable local politician was actually involved in a murder. Her suspicions place her life in danger and require the Protectors to seek out a man who is believed to be long dead to assist her case.
Series 2, Episode 16
Jan. 4, 1974
In Spain,young David Mitchell,son of a wealthy man,has joined an extreme revolutionary group and taken as a hostage Anna De Santos,a childhood friend. The group intend to blow up a bridge as an American diplomat passes over it.The Protectors are alerted and Harry masquerades as an explosives expert supposedly about to assist the group with their plan in order to infiltrate them.
Series 2, Episode 17
Jan. 11, 1974
Sugar and Spice
In the heart of the Home Counties business man Sir Charles Standish receives kidnap threats against his teen-aged daughter Vicky,possibly by aggrieved former business associates. Rather than involve the police and panic Vicky,Standish engages the Protectors but things must look as normal as possible and so Harry is passed off as her new tutor though he does not have the easiest of times with her.
Series 2, Episode 18
Jan. 18, 1974
Wealthy Canadian Adam Ferris gets in touch with the Protectors when his heiress daughter Anne goes missing in London and turns up again having joined a religious sect with sinister overtones of the occult. Ferris is concerned that the group will brain-wash her into giving them her considerable inheritance. Harry poses as a reforming alcoholic in need of spiritual guidance in order to join the sect.
Series 2, Episode 19
Jan. 25, 1974
The Tiger and the Goat
Caroline is asked by British Intelligence to act as a 'goat' to act as decoy to catch a 'tiger'. An ex-boyfriend of hers is a spy and she is told that he is the potential victim of an assassination plot,which she is brought in to foil. However,when the man tells her that he has resigned as an agent Caroline sees that she has been employed under false pretences. She is indeed a decoy and only Paul can save her.
Series 2, Episode 20
Feb. 1, 1974
Harry is on the trail of one of the largest heroin smuggling operations,a trail which leads him from London to Denmark where he comes to on a landfill site to discover that the gang involved in the smuggling has eluded him. However he is aware of the harbour port where the drugs are being stashed and,as he is the only man apart from the miscreants,who knows its location,it puts him very much in danger.
Series 2, Episode 21
Feb. 8, 1974
Anne Gordon seeks the help of the Protectors. Her son John is on trial for a crime that he did not commit though her fears are actually for her husband Arthur. He is a disturbed mental patient who has gone missing after hearing about the trial. The judge in charge of John's case is Judge Cronin and the Protectors must prevent Arthur from killing him.
Series 2, Episode 22
Feb. 15, 1974
Harry is on a train returning from Edinburgh to London. He gets into conversation with a fellow traveller. This man is the poetic Shadbolt,but there is something about him that Harry cannot possibly know. Shadbolt is also a professional assassin and his presence on the train is no coincidence. He has been paid to kill Harry at a given time, a fact to which Harry must tumble for the ultimate show-down.
Series 2, Episode 23
Feb. 22, 1974
A Pocketful of Posies
Carrie Blaine is a professional singer about to make her come-back. However she is convinced that her house is haunted when the clocks start to run backwards and she keeps hearing a chorus of children singing 'A Pocketful of Posies'. Is she correct in her guess or is she about to have a break-down? Or is she being used as part of a sinister plot by one of her associates? Enter the Protectors to find out.
Series 2, Episode 24
Mar. 1, 1974
Harry joins a car rally as a driver whilst the Protectors are in pursuit of their toughest case to date. A Swiss bank hires them to go after stolen papers but they only want the copies,not the originals. This involves cracking a safe,photographing the contents of a locked brief-case – the details of a numbered bank account – and returning them to the bank without the account holder knowing that anything has happened.
Series 2, Episode 25
Mar. 8, 1974
All the copies of a film have been stolen at the pre-production stage and Harry is called in by its director to try and recover them. Whilst they are talking in his office,they are joined by the alleged thief, who offers to return the prints in exchange for a ransom. The money is duly paid and the blackmailer steps into the lift. However,he is not seen to get out again,or to leave the building.How did he vanish into thin air?
Series 2, Episode 26
Mar. 15, 1974
A gang of hi-jackers led by villains Birch and Slater are making off with security vans containing consignments of platinum in different European locations and the Protectors are called in to stop them. However the assignment is no easy task as the evidence, namely the vehicles containing the booty, seem to disappear. Could an old chemistry set experiment hold a clue as to what is happening?