Weird Cat and the Scary World of Animated GIFs

What is it about animated gifs that makes them so strange and disturbingly compelling?

It's not just the freaky nature of the images themselves. There's something more about them that seems to eat away at some dark and hidden part of our brain in a maddening way.

Maybe it's the repetition that may suggest, in some very small way, what a person plagued with OCD must endure day in and day out.

Animated gifs seem to be a tiny portal through which we may peer into that which we might imagine hell to be, if there is indeed a hell.

Who knows?

But there is indeed something strange and very disturbingly compelling about animated gifs.

Don't you agree?


Spy vs Spy

James Bond was the most famous spy of all until Valerie Plame got her burn notice.

Our favorite of the cinema secret agents was always Derek Flint as portrayed by the ever-cool James Coburn.

Our Man Flint was, for our money, the best 007 spoof. It was just outrageous enough to be fun, with enough action to be a great ride.

The Man From U.N.C.L.E

James Bond creator Ian Fleming was in on the ground floor of NBC's The Man From U.N.C.L.E.

Originally pitched as Ian Fleming's Solo, the show became something different by the time it found popularity on the small screen. And Napoleon Solo wasn't solo at all with Illya Kuryakin as his sidekick.

S#*! My Man From U.N.C.L.E. Says
Not only did the Man from U.N.C.L.E save the world every week, he gave William Shatner the early opportunity to hone his overacting skills. And as an added bonus, in the cast of the Project Strigas Affair episode was the future Captain Kirk AND the future Spock.

Check out William Shatner and Leonard Nimoy together before they blasted off for the final frontier.

The closing credits thanked the United Network Command for Law and Enforcement for their cooperation with the program. NBC attorneys probably had to set up some kind of on-paper bogus organization just to be able to say that and get away with it.

Robert Vaughan showed up a few years later in England-based The Protectors.

Secret Agent / Danger Man / The Prisoner

Sean Connery got the James Bond role because Patrick McGoohan turned it down.

Patrick wanted to do something with a little more gravitas. The smart and sophisticated Secret Agent (titled Danger Man in the UK) was TV's answer to 007.

The Johnny Rivers intro was recorded to make the show more palatable to US audiences.

Proving that the David Hasselhoff can absolutely destroy almost anything the least bit creative just by getting close to it, listen to the Hoff's version of this TV show's iconic theme if you dare.

It's pretty bad. It's real bad.

It's very, very bad...

In England, the show used a classy instrumental theme.

Patrick McGoohan maintained that the character Number 6 in The Prisoner was not John Drake from Secret Agent.

But, then again, would a secret agent ever reveal his true identity?

The Saint

Roger Moore was never our choice for 007 but he really seemed to find his stride as The Saint's Simon Templar.

But Roger Moore wasn't just James Bond and the Saint. He was Beau Maverick, Ivanhoe and a bunch of other TV characters in his time.

The Avengers

We never got the point of this show. It was too campy, too tongue-in-cheek.

And what was the deal with the derby and the umbrella?

Steed and Emma Peel never interested us. We preferred Dempsey and Makepeace.

No, they weren't really spies but we'll use any excuse to show a clip that includes Glynis Barber.