The Avengers (1961) s05e13 Episode Script

A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Station

We're needed.
Well To drag a girl away from her fireside, it must be important.
I agree.
And a fellow from his electric blanket.
You have no idea why he wanted you to meet his train? No, but dear fat, pompous Lucas isn't given to exaggerating.
Good for Lucas.
Norborough next stop.
Next stop Norborough.
I do beg your pardon.
I'm so sorry.
Well, he's missed it.
I guess he might have dropped off.
He's asleep.
- I'll take this end.
- Er, what does he look like? Rather corpulent.
Not much hair.
Hey! It's me you're supposed to be paying the attention to.
Let's not get overenthusiastic.
My husband's a very jealous man.
- Can I help you, madam? - No, thank you.
I'm waiting for someone.
I can't understand it.
He said he'd be here ten minutes ago.
Perhaps you've seen him.
He's bald, fat with a little moustache.
No, madam.
I've seen no one like that at all.
- What's the trouble? - This lady's lost her friend.
On the train? Can't have got very far.
What does your friend look like? Bald, fat with a little moustache.
Oh, he said he was in some kind of trouble.
Did he say what the trouble was? Well, he just said he was broke, so I lent him ã5.
I know.
He probably slipped off the train at Norborough.
That's it.
He must have given you the slip at Norborough.
- I found this.
- At least it proves he is on the train.
He's in trouble.
Standard procedure.
When an agent's on the run or in trouble, he leaves something identifiable behind.
Where to? He didn't get off at Norborough and the train doesn't stop anywhere else.
- I don't know.
- King's Cross.
Maybe we'll find the answer in here.
King's Cross! King's Cross.
Excuse me, madam.
A gentleman asked me to give you your ã5 note.
He said to apologise for the inconvenience he caused you.
- I must try that more often.
- What was all that about? That briefcase.
It belonged to Lucas.
We need it.
And who's his lady friend? - Auntie Maud.
- Do you know her? Maud.
Microfilm and Uncyphered Documents.
Army issue pouch.
- Ah, agents - for the use of? - What else? 4767 4th July, 1967.
Independence Day.
Could be.
These are Lucas's notes.
It's going to take me time to decipher these.
Steed, this man, Salt - personal secretary to Admiral Cartney.
- Hm - He was on the train.
Admiral Cartney? He certainly wasn't.
Salt was.
I saw him.
Oh, good.
Ah, he's working for Admiral Cartney.
Worth a visit.
Hasn't he just been posted to the Admiralty? That's hush, hush.
- Shh.
- Shh.
Thank you, Admiral, for your personal tour.
Public relations.
You write a nice piece for us, helps recruiting.
We get a better choice of man.
Good job all round, hm? True.
After all, your women readers want the same thing as the Admiralty, hm? - They do? - More able-bodied men.
- Er, more questions.
- Fire away.
"How do you like your new job?" I wish you hadn't asked that.
It makes me sound like some sort of travel agent.
Me, who fought five major sea battles in the last war.
Still, to put it another way, it is important work.
What exactly do you do? I make all the travel arrangements for VIPs.
I see.
So if someone important is travelling from A to B, you make sure they're comfortable.
Oh, I do more than that.
I make sure they're secure.
Can't have people popping off half the government.
I have to make sure all is well and shipshape, check every security arrangement Oh, Salt, would you pop that file back to Top-Secret Registry? Steed Whoops! You really must have a word with that cleaning lady of yours.
- He tried to kill me.
- Antisocial.
According to my deciphering, Lucas believed he was on to a plot to kill a VIP.
- Kill joy? - What? You just ruined a honeymoon.
This man was on the train accompanied by a blushing bride.
Oh, so that's why he was carrying a ticket.
Chase Halt station.
Where's that? That's about three stops down the line from Norborough.
But nothing stops there.
Chase Halt hasn't been used for years.
Did Lucas say who was going to do the popping off? Some splinter group.
He intercepted some radio messages, but couldn't get a fix.
Every time he beamed on their transmission, they moved away.
Oh, perhaps Lucas will fill in the gaps when we find him.
Trespassing! Trespassing! Yes! Do you know that this is my station? Your station? I bought it.
I Well, I'm I'm negotiating a price.
Humble beginnings, but one day One day a a mainline station.
King's Cross, Waterloo A terminus! Yes, that's what I've set my heart on.
Are you always here? I live in the signal box.
Do the trains ever stop here? - Ah, no! Not for the past nine years.
- Were you here last night? Last night? Don't talk to me about last night.
It was a nightmare! Listen, young man.
I had a phone call from a dealer with an 1892 water cistern.
Jubilee celebration issue.
Mint condition.
When I got there it was a practical joke.
Final insult, I missed the last train and had to take a bus.
A bus! Ooh! I found these in the in the ladies' waiting room.
- Really? - Yes.
- I suppose it was the practical joker.
- Yes, I suppose it was.
Is this station identical to Norborough? Yes, almost every detail.
Sir Scott Simon designed it.
There must be a couple of dozen of them.
Very interesting.
Does that mean anything to you? Sorry.
I-I-I can't help you there, no.
Two Norboroughs for the price of one.
Exit for Lucas.
Maybe this was their headquarters.
Or they moved from one derelict station to another.
Do you think we ought to move poor old Lucas discreetly? And feed friend Salt to the Admiralty some home-made information.
And see where he takes it.
Admiral Cartney RM.
Oh, hello, Rodney.
Huh? Oh, yes.
yes, I've got your coded signal right in front of me.
Periscope pictures? Oh, yes.
Yes, I like that very much.
Oh, do you think the Pyrocanthus is fitting for the job? Oh, I see.
Yes, splendid.
Er, Rodney OK.
I was just clearing it with you.
What? Oh, yes.
Yes, of course.
I'll burn it at once.
Can't have that falling into other people's hands.
Might be embarrassing.
Action at last! Did you hear that, Salt? - Action, sir? - Yes.
Top-security manoeuvres.
The whole of the general staff are going to tour the enemies' off-shore installation.
Sorry to disturb you.
Which platform for the 08:10 to Liverpool? - Number seven.
- Thank you.
- Excuse me? - Yes, sir.
Where's the nearest telephone? Over there.
Under the clock.
Under the clock.
Thank you.
- Peel? - Yes, Steed? - I think he's taken the hook.
- Good.
I'm at the station now.
He's just boarded the train.
I'm following him.
Does it stop at Norborough? That's the one.
- I'll meet you there.
- Right.
Tickets, please.
Tickets, please, gentlemen.
When one wants it, one can never find it.
Excuse me, sir.
20 years on the railways and it still plays me up.
- Oh, I'm sorry to hear it.
- Thank you, sir.
Thank you.
- Here you go.
- Thank you.
Thank you, sir.
Norborough next stop, gentlemen.
First call for dinner.
Thank you, sir.
- Do you travel this line often? - Quite often.
First call for dinner.
Second call for dinner.
Second call for dinner, please.
Second call for dinner.
Second call for dinner.
Second call for dinner.
Which way is the restaurant car? - It seems about five miles that way! - Thank you.
- That man - What man? The one who just went past.
It's the same one.
The same what? The same man who found Lucas's briefcase.
The one Bart went after.
- Are you sure? - Positive.
Bart didn't report back, did he? I haven't let Salt out of my sight.
So far no one's tried to contact him.
He hasn't tried to contact anybody.
I-I-I say, do you mind if we change seats? I-I-I must sit with my back to the engine.
Not at all.
The man in Salt's compartment, I think he's dangerous.
In that case you'd better tell Salt.
Do something about it.
I think it best you you don't move.
All taken care of, Julie beloved.
All taken care of.
Ah, Norborough.
The train now arriving at platform four is the - Salt's just leaving.
- Good.
His latest information was false, from beginning to end.
- Not a word of truth in it.
- Oh, dear.
He'll be going back to his office sometime tonight.
Steed? Steed? I haven't let Salt out of my sight.
I haven't let Salt out of my sight.
No one's tried to contact him yet and he hasn't contacted anybody else.
I think it best you don't move.
Admiral Cartney? Mrs Peel.
Yes, I know it's long after eight bells.
There's something you ought to know about Salt.
The signal you gave us was a fake.
HMS Pyrocanthus is in mothballs.
Has been for years.
So the general staff won't be visiting enemy installations, will they? I got it from the Admiral.
Believe me.
You may be telling the truth.
You may be right.
- In that case surely - In that case you're under suspicion.
Too close to the big day.
- If we can just search his desk - Hold on a minute.
A strong smell of grapeshot in the air.
Oh, my dear girl, I do owe you an apology.
Is something going on? There was, but someone got there before us.
Till death us do part.
Please don't use those words! I've spent my entire life trying to avoid the final splicing.
Never dropped anchor Admiral, is there any VIP about to travel at the moment? Always travelling.
Why? Lucas was on to something, which is why he was killed.
Ah, yes, Lucas.
Poor fellow.
Ex-Navy, you know.
Fancy getting hit on a railway station.
Perhaps he discovered that a VIP was about to be popped off.
Hm? Over my dead body.
Could be.
"London to Norborough.
First-class return.
" There must be about 100 of them.
The fellow must have had an obsession about railways.
They're all punched through.
The "O" in "Norborough".
Oh, yes.
And the hole's just about the size of a Self-respecting microdot.
Makes sense.
- Salt fills in the "O" with a microdot.
- Ticket collector punches it out again And, bingo, the message is passed on.
To a ticket collector?! How did the ceremony go? Mr Salt, late-VIP now RIP.
A little keepsake.
A memento.
I'll take that.
Come on.
I want to see how things are going.
What a beautiful sight! Which? Me or the bomb? Oh, you, of course, my dear.
How do we know the vibrations from the train won't set the bomb off? Take her word for it.
I've got very good credits, but I haven't had to deal with anybody.
- What triggers the bomb off this time? - A radio signal.
From this train.
It sounds dangerous.
Not at all.
There ought to be a mile between us at least.
There will be.
Yes, we don't want to be blown up as well, do we? We won't be! No, the moment that goes up, we'll be speeding away in the opposite direction.
So just relax.
Relax? How are we going to get this carriage off this train and on to his? - Easy.
- There's your answer.
"This carriage to be commandeered and prepared for VIP train.
" VIP.
- Very Important Person.
- Very! They'll be transferring this carriage tomorrow.
I'll deal with it personally.
I'll be rather sorry to see it go.
Never mind.
You may be losing a carriage, but he'll be gaining a bomb.
Roll on tomorrow.
- Mr Crewe? - Yes? - Do you live here? - Well, not exactly.
I've got a little semi-detached signal box along the line.
Why? So you live alone? Well, yes.
Why all these questions? Who are you? - Mrs Peel! - I don't know you.
- George Warren.
I'm a friend of Steed's.
- Where does he buy his trilbies? He wears bowlers and he gets them from St James.
My identification.
What are you doing here? Could ask you the same question.
Special security watch along this railway line.
Someone important is travelling along this line? I said Special Security.
Can't divulge details to anybody.
And I mean anybody.
Now what about you? What are you doing here? I came to ask Mr Crewe's advice on a railway matter.
Why don't we retire to my signal box? Come! And what exactly is your problem, dear lady? - I'd like you to listen to this umbrella.
- You'd like me to listen to Salt's camera had a film in it.
A very practical place to keep a film I'd say.
I've just had it developed.
Details of security on this line.
They're sending a Special Branch man to every station on the route.
- Well - They'll go to Chase Halt.
- They'll find Lucas's body.
- Exactly.
Unless I get to the Special Branch man first.
- When do we reach Chase Halt? - Coming up in about ten minutes.
An unscheduled stop is indicated.
Well? - Is this a trick, madam? - Not at all.
Why? Play it again.
Now two sets of diddly dums.
Impossible! Train can't be going fast and slow at the same time.
- He's right.
- 'Course I'm right! Hear it? There's a diddly dum in the foreground.
And then behind it it keeps varying.
Diddly dum, diddly dee, diddly dum, diddly dah This isn't a train at all! Play it again.
A train's stopped at the station.
Quick as you can.
Are you sure he was dead? Then they found him.
Give me the gun.
I'll find them.
Try the signal box.
Just a minute! Diddly dah, diddly dum DU - It's the Mark V tapping code! - Is that good? The tapping code? It's a sort of shorthand in Morse.
It was devised so that men could communicate with each other in the prisoner of war camps! - Can I help? - Some paper and a pencil.
Now, give it to me from the top.
Diddly dah, diddly dum.
Twiddly dum.
Twiddly, twiddly, twiddly dah.
Blinkety blink, blinkety blink.
Chaddley dum, chaddley dah.
Boopety boop.
- Durbridge! - Right on this line.
And from all this you've learned that someone important is travelling? The Prime Minister? Somebody's train must be late.
You were right.
Right about what? The Prime Minister.
- He'll be on this line.
- When? Tonight.
My word, you have been busy.
Now you know he likes the corner seat.
Yes, sir.
We did know that, sir.
And he must face the engine otherwise You'll find that this journey will go like clockwork, sir.
A little faster I trust.
Hm, a trifle hard on the springing.
However, this will do splendidly.
Thank you, sir.
He may want to thank you personally.
You'll both be on the train, of course.
I fear not, sir.
We'll be on the 08:10.
Our regular run.
Oh, well, then we shall pass one another.
So we will.
At 8:57pm.
You're quite sure you want to come along? Oh, if I can just lay my hands on the vandal who shot at my signal box who destroyed all my beautiful, original, grimy glass, stained with the steam and smoke of past glories! I'll stay here.
You find the ticket collector.
- Ticket collector.
- Then what? - See what he does.
- See what he does.
He punches holes in the tickets.
Just follow him.
It's getting close to zero hour.
Keep this door locked from now on.
Don't let anyone through unless they give our knock.
- Ah, Mr Steed.
- Ah, ticket inspector.
I had you brought here to witness the final phase.
Very decent of you.
It's for me, really.
Verging on megalomania you might say.
But a coup is not a coup without someone to see.
Well, I'm afraid I shan't be able to applaud.
The look in your eyes will be enough.
We I am going to blow up your prime minister.
Oh? How do you know which way I voted? Interesting.
The Prime Minister's travelling tonight.
On this line.
If we're lucky, we should see him pass.
He should pass at about 8:57.
At that time we will be running through Durbridge Junction.
Durbridge, population 2,413.
Principal industry, the manufacture of glass eyes for teddy bears.
Fame, non-existent.
But after tonight there won't be anybody in the civilised world who hasn't heard of it.
After tonight.
After I have pressed this button.
Another five miles, Mr Steed, and then Pop goes the diesel.
Very droll.
- Sir? Could be trouble, sir.
- What do you mean? We're nearly there.
That woman who lost the ã5, sir.
She's on the train, sir.
In 4767.
My pièce de résistance, Mr Steed.
An ingenious device by which I can contact my agents without approaching them.
Indeed, they do not even have to leave their seats.
Kill the woman.
Oh! - Mrs Peel - Mm-hm? Oh, my goodness! A slight difference of opinion.
Bom, diddly, bom, bom, bom, bom! Catchy.
I don't think much of the lyrics.
No, no.
The door to the restaurant car is locked.
- There is a special knock to get in.
- Ah! Bom, diddly, bom, bom Bom, bom.
- Hello! - Turn around.
Must have been the shotgun.
- Vandal! - He's better with a machine gun.
You mean, he's the one who? My signal box! You'll be Open the door.
- Jump.
- Jump? Jump! Jump.
Dear Mrs Peel! It's terribly dangerous, you know, to lean out of a train while it's in motion.
Oh Round two.
Excuse me, sir.
Have you the right time? Coming up to 8:54.
- Thank you.
- Pleasure.
Running right on time.
- Ladies first.
- After you.
Goodness! What are you hanging about for? Go, Georgie! Kill her! There's no need to get steamed up.
Oh, yes! Kill him! Over there, Georgie! Is that you, Mr Steed? Kill them! Before the Prime Minister's train goes by.
Do you mind? That's my Sorry.
The button! Oh - What now? - Let's stop the train! Why not? Thank you.
It's something I've wanted to do all my life.
Are you sure it's him? It's got to be.
They said "arriving any minute".
- And someone called? - Mm.
Said something about the nation owing us a great debt of gratitude.
I should think so.
We saved him from being blown sky-high.
No wonder he's grateful.
Ah! Here he comes.
Does he really need all those motorcycles? Yes, of course he does.
A very impressive procession.
That must be him.
The top hat.
No, he's the one in the raincoat.
Really? He doesn't look as small as he does on television.
Really? I think he looks smaller.
I must have a bigger set.
Ah, well, it'll be an OBE for me.
Sir John Steed.
Dame Emma.
'Course you know what this means.
- Mm-hm.
He's going to make a speech.
- A long speech.
Did you vote for him? Did you? - Let's - Pretend we're out.