Leslie Charteris‘s The Saint is a series of novels in the UK starring Simon Templar. He’s a criminal technically, but so is Robin Hood. In fact Templar is a modern-day Robin Hood, stealing not from the corrupt government but those who got those riches by victimizing others. While he will keep an expense fee at times (around 10 %) the majority of the money he takes goes back to the victims or to charity. The character has been in movies since 1938, and radio since 1940. (Britain still makes radio dramas.)
He has also appeared on television, the latest being in 2017. The earliest however was in 1962. Roger Moore tried to get the rights but happily settled for playing the role on TV, even delaying his more famous book adaptation when he finally took over as James Bond in movies. His last movie was a role in the 2017 movie, a failed series pilot.
Tonight we’re looking at the first episode of that series, produced by ITC. It had decent success outside of England as well. In this episode Simon has come looking into a man whose previous wives died under mysterious circumstances, and his friend may be next.
The series lasted from 1962-1969, a total of six series (what they call TV seasons in the UK). Sometimes here in the US you can find reruns on TV (I saw it earlier this week on This–yes, that’s the name of the channel) and some streaming networks, including Shout Factory’s own site, which thankfully is paid with ads and video sales instead of subscriptions. You can also get it on home video here in the US through Shout Factory or a few other previous Region 1 DVD releases. In the UK, according to Wikipedia, you can get some episodes, and the theatrical movie recut of the multipart episodes of later seasons. Otherwise I’m in the US and wouldn’t really know.