Asano, an aging Japanese man, agrees to sell a family heirloom, a 500-year-old samurai sword, to Mannering for 10,000 pounds. When Asano delivers the sword to the antiques dealer, he bumps ... See full summary »


(as John Moxey)


(character), (screenplay)


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Episode cast overview:
Lee Montague ...
Raymond Huntley ...
Norman Stirling
Paul Ferris ...
David Marlowe
Jeanne Roland ...
Samantha Asano
Larry Taylor ...
Tom Stirling
Hal Dyer ...
Miss Chanter
Sidonie Bond ...
Royston Tickner ...
Clifford Earl ...
Detective Sergeant


Asano, an aging Japanese man, agrees to sell a family heirloom, a 500-year-old samurai sword, to Mannering for 10,000 pounds. When Asano delivers the sword to the antiques dealer, he bumps into Sterling, an British army officer who suffered the Japanese POW camp commanded by Asano. Sterling plans on exacting revenge for his treatment at the hands of the Japanese soldier and when Asano is found dead, Mannering must project Sterling from Asano's vengeful servant. Written by David Bassler

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Crime | Drama




Release Date:

10 February 1966 (USA)  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound Recording)


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


Yasugi: It is the sword of the great Lord Asano!
Asano: The great Lord Asano has been dead for five hundred years.
Yasugi: No man may own this.
Asano: You're wrong. When I get my check for 10,000 pounds, it will be owned by John Mannering.
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User Reviews

Hatred never dies
22 August 2012 | by (Ambrosia) – See all my reviews

When reviewing archive programmes or films, some people fall into the trap of judging them by present-day standards. This episode of 'The Baron' - written by Brian Degas and directed by John Moxey - was the first recorded, and I suspect would not be incredibly popular if shown now to a young audience. The plot revolves around two men - Japanese businessman 'Asano' ( Lee Montague ) and 'Colonel Norman Stirling' ( Raymond Huntley ) - who meet up by chance after twenty years, and old animosities are stirred up. Asano had been Kommandant of a P.O.W. camp during the Second World War, and Stirling had been one of its prisoners. The Colonel cannot forget how barbarically Asano had behaved

  • halving food rations, refusing medicine, driving his brother 'Tom' (

Colin Jeavons ) insane, and so on - and vows revenge. During their fight, Asano is accidentally killed with a paper knife. Stirling then has to face 'Yasugi' ( Larry Taylor ), Asano's manservant, who is pretty adept with a Samurai sword.

This is a well-written, thought-provoking episode. Perhaps it was deemed a bit too heavy for a peak-time show, and no more appeared like it in the series. The arguments put forward by both Asano and Stirling are reasoned and intelligent; the latter cannot forget the atrocities he witnessed at first-hand, while the former feels he has been punished already - his wife was at Hiroshima the day the bomb was dropped. John Mannering pleads for them to look forwards, not backwards, but it is no use. Their mutual hatred ultimately leads to tragedy...

Apart from Jeanne Roland, cast as Asano's daughter 'Samantha', no Japanese actors are in this. 'Asano' is played by Lee Montague, a London-born actor. The practice of English performers cast as ethnic minorities is frowned upon now, but was acceptable then. This fact needs to be considered when evaluating the episode. Montague gives an excellent performance. Less convincing as a Japanese is Larry Taylor ( Yasugi ) who looks like a refugee from a spaghetti western. Hal Dyer, seen as 'Miss Chanter', was married to future 'On The Buses' star Michael Robbins.

The only scene I would deem unacceptable is the sight of 'David Marlowe' ( Paul Ferris ) playing about with a Samurai sword and speaking in a silly mock-Japanese voice. It is simply cringe-inducing to watch.

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