Long before the present time, where all that is required of male action hero is overdeveloped biceps and a tight T-shirt, there was The Avengers, possibly the coolest TV series in history. Its undisputed lead was John Steed, given life by Patrick McNee.
John Steed is always dressed in the best that English menswear has to offer, while the series is set in a hyper-English England that didn’t even exist at the time the series was created.
The 1967 season of the series is The Avengers at its absolute apex, as it makes the transition to glorious, gaudy colour, and co-starts Diana Rigg as Mrs. Peel. Not least because Diana Rigg, who would later become the only “Bond babe” to actually marry Mr. Bond, is a worthy partner to Mr. Steed in both capability, charm and dress sense.
As can hopefully be seen in this introduction to the 1967 season, this is style on a level that will probably never be seen on television again.
And here’s the introduction that was used for the American market:
John Steed manages to have perfect manners without ever being stuffy, and dress immaculately without ever seeming overdressed. While it is impossible for a humble man such as His Lordship to achieve this, at least it's something to strive for once in a while.
John Steed fandom has taken the somewhat inappropriate moniker “Steedophilia”. And while Lord Bassington-Bassington absolutely disapproves of this (who wants to be known as a “Steedophile?”), he can’t help but frequent websites such as this. And he has, of course, purchased a bamboo-handled umbrella.