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Sunday, 30 July 2017

7 of The Best!

   Why 7, and not 6? That’s simple, in order to compliment Patrick McGoohan’s original idea to have just 7 episodes to ‘the Prisoner.’ What follows are my 7 best episodes of ‘the Prisoner.’
1, ‘Arrival,’ first because it sets up the series perfectly. A man resigns his job, is abducted to The Village. He is pushed, filed, stamped, indexed, briefed, de-briefed, and numbered! And along with the Prisoner the television viewer begins to learn about The Village! It is brilliantly filmed, and takes in the all pictorial value of Pormeirion.
    Originally there was to have been a fight between two men in a fish pond located outside Lower and Upper Trinity cottages. However the scene having been shot, was cut from the finished episode. And yet there is a similar action, if you watch carefully as the Prisoner mounts the steps leading up to the Piazza. There are two men fighting, they grapple with each other and fall into the pool of water. As the scene plays out the two men continue to fight in the water, they appear to be squabbling over something yellow in the water. But then a few moments later when Number 2 gives the order to “Wait, wait” the two men in the water are suddenly no longer there! But what about that chap wearing a dark piped blazer, straw boater messing about in a little dinghy in the pool? The dinghy is pulled along by the chap who goes running about to eventually be smothered by the membranic Guardian. The dinghy probably manhandled instead of being rowed because the water isn’t deep enough for him to use a pair of oars! There is a quirkiness about The Village which runs throughout the series, and at times that which takes place is strange and surreal. And sometimes it bends the rules, “Walk on the grass”.
   And the questions begin, where is The Village? Why did the Prisoner resign? Who is Number 1? Who is Number 2? What is that white balloon supposed to be? Will the Prisoner escape?

2, ‘Checkmate,’ simply because of its simplicity. There is no over elaboration, just a plan which has been well calculated. However there is one mistake, and the Rook made it. Again being one of the four episodes to be filmed at Portmeirion, which could be chosen simply for Portmeirion’s picturesque value alone.
3, ‘The Chimes of Big Ben,’ chosen because of the rapport between Number 6 and Number 2 when it should be impossible for a relationship to be struck up between Number 6 and Number 2. For its sense of humour, and for the first time it reveals a chink in Number 6’s armour, he can never resist a damsel in distress! The episode also demonstrates how Number 6 is as easily fooled as any of us. He believed Nadia’s story of knowing the location of The Village because he was desperate to escape.
4, ‘Free For All,’ possibly a perfect episode is one way to describe it. The one flaw it does have is how many times the taxi is driven down the same street, passing the same buildings, during the interview with Number 113! Number 2 is always in control and is able to manipulate Number 6 because of his predictability. They knew that given the opportunity to stand for election Number 6 would not be able to resist, hence the prefabricated placards. Demonstrating that everything in The Village is arranged, and pre-arranged well in advance!
5, ‘Dance Of The Dead,’ this is the perfect episode, there are no mistakes as I can see. The action is defined, the storyline simple, and it is the last time Number 6 will have his breakfast brought to him on a tray! It is an episode which Patrick McGoohan took against, and for some time left on the shelf in the editing suite, which makes me instantly for this episode. What is gained by the end of this episode, I’ve never been clear about. Perhaps it’s simply that Number 6 can never win, no matter what he does.
  There is the moment of suspense and anticipation as Number 6 is about to whip aside the screen to reveal, to reveal not who, but what….the teleprinter! Who did Number 6 expect to see, who did you expect to see? At the time in 1967 I did think it might be Number 1, but that would have been too far too easy.
   Number 6 put on trial and sentenced to death. We the television viewer are aware that it is a sentence that will not be carried out, because Number 2 tells us that Number 6 has a future with The Village, but Number 6 doesn’t know that!

6, ‘Hammer Into Anvil,’ is chosen for the one-to-one value of this episode, the plots and machinations of Number 6 against Number 2, his “jamming” activities if you prefer. Yes I know Number 2 has an assistant in Number 14, but he doesn’t really get that involved, and when he does he always gets the worst of it, from both Number 2 and Number 6. Number 2 may be a weak link in the chain of command, but he’s no murderer. A fool because he’s not prepared to listen to anyone. Mentally he’s unstable seeing enemies and conspirators everywhere, where there are none. At the time, in 1967, I thought this Number 2 had got it right, that Number 6 was a plant sent to The Village. But I soon learned differently. Although I think a plant was sent to The Village, Number 34 who died in ‘Dance of The Dead!’
7, ‘The General,’ because I like actor Colin Gordon, and its a lesson in education! An overconfident Number 2, his confidence is in the General and Speedlearn {no more tedious learning by rote} which eventually leads to his downfall. WHY? Here Number 2 is given a second bite of the cherry, yes he messed up when attempting to extract the reason behind the Prisoner’s resignation in ‘A B and C,’ but this time his administrative details do not concern Number 6, so nothing can go wrong. Well not until Number 6 involved himself, having got the message that Speedlearn is an abomination, it is slavery, and that the General must be destroyed!
   Whereas ‘Dance of The Dead’ had a period of Carnival, ‘The General’ has a period of Mardi Gras, students wearing very elaborate Mardi Gras masks and waving placards about with such slogans as “No Home work with Speedlearn” “Speedlearn Its More Than Possible It Works” “University For All In 3 Minutes” “No More School ❤
General” as they celebrate the fruits of Speedlearn.
    That’s my choice of 7 episodes of which 1 to 5 was an easy choice to make. All I had to do then was select the final two which was not quite so simple, and then to put them in no particular order, save for ‘Arrival.’ However I’m sure that readers would be able to make their own choices which would no doubt differ greatly from mine.
Be seeing you

Bureau of Visual Records


    I can see the reason why citizens in The Village would go about carrying open umbrellas, the danger of intermittent showers, and where there were no intermittent showers and the sun was shining, they also act as parasols protecting from the sun’s rays. But why citizens are forced to go about wearing tinted face masks that look like welding masks, I don’t know. Not unless once more the tinted visor is protection from ultra violet rays. Is The Village really located in such a hot climate? What other possible reason could there be for the wearing of such tinted visors? But perhaps there is no reason except for visual effect.

Be seeing you

Quote For The Day

    “I’m not one of them!”
    “No, no-one is. Go back, tell them I was not interested, that I wouldn’t even listen. Why bother, they know already. I won’t go for it whatever it is, so you may as well stop trying!”
    “We never stop Number Six.”
                                     {Number’s 50, 6 and 2 – It’s Your Funeral}
   
That’s right, they never stop, mind you they fail more often than not. If ever Number 2 has a plan he should make sure Number 6 isn’t involved first. I say he, because no female Number 2 actually failed in dealing with Number 6. In fact Mrs. Butterworth and Peter Pan faired exceptionally well with Number 6, and should be commended for their efforts. Number 58 played her part, but as the new Number 2 was merely left to tie up loose ends. I suspect she enjoyed her role as Number 58, a Number 2 working undercover, that was a novelty!

Be seeing you


Friday, 28 July 2017

It’s Inexplicable!


    Its inexplicable that Number 86 should confess to Number 6 that she is higher than Number 2 because 2 is second only to one, Number 1 being the boss according to Number 6. Mind you 86 was high on Mytol at the time! But what about Number 6, he’s pretty high up in the rankings but without any power of position. It seems strange to rank a prisoner so highly, when numbers 8 and 9 worked for The Village, and yet they both rank lower than Number 6! Number 1 might be the ace in the hole, but aces in the game can be high or low!
    Number 2 told the Supervisor-Number 26 to put out a general call for Number 86.
    “Number 6 as well?”
    Number 2 “No, he’s safe enough here for the time being.”
    Where is that, where was Number 6 supposed to be “safe enough here for the time being,” after all he’s not in the Green Dome, he’s not even in The Village, he’s in the woods busy hypnotizing Number 86! So what Number 2 said is something of a curious thing to say.

Be seeing you

eSCapEd!

  Do you know how long you have been away Potter?
    Potter, how good it is to hear my name again!
    What do you mean by that?
    Only, well The Village.........
    The Village, what village?
    Don’t you know about The Village Sir Charles?
    Where is this village?
    I don’t know. I was in
Austria, I went to the barber’s shop, I woke up in The Village!
    Where’s Seltzman?
    I lost him.
    You did what?
    I lost him. I had him, he was working in a village in
Austria, Kandersfeld, as a barber. I had him, but well the Colonel was there. We had a fight.
    What was the Colonel doing there?
    I don’t know sir.
    Well Potter, or should I say XB4, you have some explaining to do. Where the devil have you been?
    In The Village, they don’t have names, only numbers.
    Well XB4 you and this village should have dovetailed nicely!
    I was a prisoner there.
    So what are you doing back here?
    I’m working for them, or at least they think I’m working for them. He’s there in The Village.
    Who?
    That chap who claimed to be ZM73. Only he wasn’t.
    Who was he then?
    The Colonel.
    ZM73 is the Colonel?
    Well he looks like the Colonel, only he isn’t, he was ZM73.
    Who is he now?
    Doctor Jacob Seltzman!
    The Colonel is Doctor Seltzman.
    Yes.
   So what about the Colonel, who’s he?
   Doctor Seltzman, but he’s dead!
   And ZM73?
   He’s back to who he’s supposed to be.
   And you Potter, are you back as you are supposed to be?
   Would I be reporting to you if I were not?
   Potter I have a special assignment for you, one that will take you out into the cold........................


    Sometime later
    Yes it’s been a very pleasant day so far. There we are sir, you can see your face in your shoes. That will be half a crown.
    Busy Potter?!
   
Be seeing you

Living In Harmony!


   The Man With No Name having buried Cathy in Boot Hill, returns to the Jailhouse to get his gun. Then he steps out into the street where the Kid is waiting. The two men face each other…. they draw The Kid, puts his gun back into its holster, falls, and lies dead in the street! The Man With No Name walks over to the body, passed the body and goes into the Silver Dollar Saloon for a drink.
   The Kid was the fastest the Judge has ever seen, will ever see, The Man With No Name has just resigned….again, he’s very good at doing that, he can’t seem to stick at anything for long! But the Judge doesn’t accept the Sheriff’s resignation, he can’t resign, not while the Judge has got Cathy. But he hasn’t got Cathy, she’s dead and buried in Boot Hill! Soon there’ll be three more, the Judge’s gunslingers who lie dead for a start, and the Man With No Name shot dead by the Judge who’s quick on the draw with his derringer.
   It’s a rude awakening for Number 6 who wants to strangle the Judge with his bare hands, only to discover he’s a cardboard cut-out, and that goes for the Kid as well! So why are those two cardboard cut-outs in black and white when everything else, including the cut-out of the horse is in colour? I’ll leave you to think about that one!

Be seeing you

Wednesday, 26 July 2017

Thought For The Day

    ‘Fall Out,’ the final manipulation of Number 6. The offer of ultimate power, perhaps even a coup, the plan to over throw Number 1 and replace him with Number 6. And there is a coming together of Number 1 and Number 6, and in that lies the paradox. It must have been a hard thing to take when Number 6 found out he’s been responsible for The Village all the time. Mind you it would have been worse for Number 1, when he thought he was the boss only to discover he had been the Prisoner all the time!

Be seeing you

The General

    Report to the General, and how do you think we’re going to manage that?
    Well I don’t mean report to him personally....for Pete’s sake you know what I mean.
    Actually I don’t, but perhaps you have haven’t heard. The General’s blown a fuse, well several fuses actually.
    Well I know he can be a bit volatile, but all the same.........
    You can’t report to The General because he’s been destroyed!
    Ah, that does make things rather tricky.
    The General’s destroyed, the Professor dead, Number 12 of administration dead and Number Two doesn’t know why!
    Why what?
    No, just why.
    What now?
    There’ll have to be a funeral I suppose, and get what remains chucked on the scrap heap!
    That’s what will happen to Number Two.
    I should guard your words carefully if I were you.
    Well Number Two made a mess of it once before, he’s not fit for a second term in office.
    Second term, I thought this was his second term?
    Oh no, it was decided to run two terms consecutively making one, and that makes the headline of The Tally Ho right.
    And Madam Professor?
   What about her?
   Will she be staying? I was going to her art seminar tomorrow.
   Really? I didn’t realize you were artistic.
   Well I dabble. She was going to allow me to paint her in the nude.
   Who was?
   Madam Professor. But she said I could keep my socks on.........well I need somewhere to stick my paint brushes!
  
Be seeing you

Exhibition of Arts And Crafts

                   “If It’s Information You Want!”

BcNu

Caught On Camera!


   Haven’t they killed you yet? Oh he must have been thinking of someone else! The woman is wearing ‘B’s dress, and yet later in this same scene the same woman is sat at a table wearing a completely different dress.

  The same woman as seen here in the 
corner of the picture. Perhaps during this
 “dreamy” party things became so wild that 
someone spilled wine on her dress and 
she had to change it.

Be seeing you





Monday, 24 July 2017

Page 6

    Number 6 followed Number 14 to the secret laboratory in the woods. He gained entry. He discovered what Number 2 and Number 14 had been doing to him. He found the third dose of the drug, and having removed some of the drug from the syringe he diluted what remained with water taken from a carafe. I did wonder what the effect of that diluted drug might be. The fact that Number 6 was physically under a great strain, that the cause of the instability of that third dream, and his eventual collapse was down to the fact he had diluted that third dose. But no, even when diluted a drug does retain its potency, although that potency would be reduced, which allowed Number 6 to manipulate his own dream. Pity, I liked the idea of Number 6 causing instability of his dream, and subsequent collapse due to his having meddled with the drug!

Be seeing you

Bureau of Visual Records


   We remember Number 14 the chess champion of ‘Checkmate, who ignored the white membranic Guardian when it passed by that time. Ignored by the one, and possibly by the other because there was no sign of fear. And then in ‘Once Upon A Time,’ our diminutive friend the Butler brings in Number 2’s breakfast. He presses a button on the control panel of the desk and begins to lay out the breakfast as the black spherical chair rises up through the floor. But it’s not Number 2 in that chair but the Guardian, who appears to think it’s the boss! As for the Butler he pays no heed to the Guardian as he’s probably seen it all before, therefore nothing surprises him. He probably thinks the Guardian as Number 2 couldn’t possibly do any worse than any of its predecessors! As for the Guardian the Butler shows no fear towards it, so it ignores him as it had done Number 14. Mind you it’s going to be interesting to see how the Guardian eats that breakfast!

Be seeing you

Village Life!


    “I’d like a coffee please waiter.”
    “Yes I bet you would!”
    “What do you mean by that?”
    “I expect you’d like a coffee.”
    “Yes I would.”
    “Well you’ll have to wait, I’ve only go one pair of hands you know.”
    “Sorry I didn’t mean.........”
    “No your sort don’t ever mean anything. You swan about with nothing to do all day, and then come here asking for coffee. Why don’t you go home and make yourself a cup of coffee instead of bothering me!”
    “There’s no need to take that attitude.”
    “The trouble with you Number Six is, you want jam on it!”
    “Did I ask for a sandwich or toast, and why haven’t I a parasol?”
    “It’s like your other privileges.....it’s been taken away!”

Be seeing you

Saturday, 22 July 2017

Quote For The Day


   Mark Gatiss is an English actor, comedian, screenwriter and novelist. His work includes writing for and acting in the TV series Doctor Who, Sherlock, and The Crooked House. He is the guest editor of the Radio Times July 22nd – 28th 2017. In an articles edited by Andrew Collins, Mark said of Colin Gordon “I simply adore him. He was No.2 in the Prisoner twice and spent his career playing weak-willed establishment men who always looked like they had ulcers.”

Be seeing you

6 of The Best!

   To select 6 favourite scenes in ‘the Prisoner’ for me proved to be an easy task. From having written about my favourite scenes on my blog all I had to do was select 6 of my best.

1, Hammer Into Anvil.’
   In ‘Hammer Into Anvil,’ after Number 2 and Number 14 have retrieved the large white envelope from the main cabin of the Stone Boat, left there by Number 6 only a few minutes before.
   Upon returning to his office Number 2 is already beginning to tear open the envelope, even before he’s hardly put a foot into his office. Number 14 is present at this time, and is probably as eager to learn what the envelope contains as Number 2 is. However………
    “I shan’t need you any more Fourteen, you can go.”
    “But I thought…”
    “Don’t……..just obey orders.
    “Yes sir.”
    Number 2 puts his hand into the envelope. But he pauses, there is an expression of expectation, perhaps anticipation on his face, as he is about to discover what the envelope contains………blank sheets of paper! In fact four blank sheets of foolscap paper. He telephones the laboratory, Number 253 answers the telephone and is summoned to Number 2’s office. Upon his arrival Number 2 hands Number 253 the blank sheets of paper. He wants them tested immediately. The laboratory technician looks puzzled.     
    “For what?”
    “Anything. Words, figures, whatever’s written on them.”
    There doesn’t appear to be anything written on them, but Number 2 is not a man to be argued with! He tells Number 253 that there is, a message of some kind.
   “Try everything. X-ray, infra-red, what are you staring at?”
   “Nothing.”
   “Then get on with it!” Number 2 barks out.
   Two laboratory technicians work together in order to establish what is written on the four sheets of foolscap paper. They try everything, but to no avail, the result of all the tests is negative. Number 242 suggests that they put the sheets of paper through the tests again. But there’s no point, they have tried everything, Number 2 isn’t going to like this.
   Back in Number’s office.
   “Well?”
   “I’m sorry sir, but there’s nothing” Number 253 reports.
   “Nothing, nothing at all?”
   “No sir. They’re just blank sheets of paper.”
   Number 2 snatches the sheets of paper out of 253’s hands “They can’t be! Why should he hide blank sheets of paper in the Stone Boat, or are you hiding something?”
   “What do you mean sir?”
   “I mean was there a message here and you’re not telling me.”
   “Why should I do that sir?”
   “Perhaps you’re in with him!”
   “In with whom?”
   “Six, Number Six.”
   Number 253 looks puzzled.
   “Oh you don’t know what I’m talking about, get out!”


2, ‘Hammer Into Anvil.’
    Number 6 pays a call on Number 2, after he had received a visit from Number 14 telling him that he’s finished, and accusing Number 6 of putting the poison in.
   Number 2 asks Number 6 what he’s doing there, he’s come to keep him company. He’s heard that all of Number 2’s friends have deserted him {not that he had many friends to begin with} that he can’t trust anyone any more {well he never did} pity. All that power at Number 2’s disposal, and yet there he is all alone. In fact Number 2 has never felt so alone as he grips hard onto the Penny Farthing seemingly for comfort.
   Number 2 asks what Number 6 wants? He’s come to talk, to listen. But Number 2 has nothing to say. But that’s not like the old Number 2, where is the strong man, the hammer. You have to be hammer or anvil, Number 2 saw himself as the hammer, but hammers break more than anvils. Number 2 claimed to know who the Prisoner is, who freely admits that he’s Number 6 {he can’t be feeling well} but not in Number 2’s eyes, he’s D6, who was sent to The Village by their masters to spy on Number 2. He had been onto him right from the very beginning, he knew what D6 had been doing, so he can stop acting now. All those messages he sent, all the people he recruited, Number 2 knew Number 6 was a plant, he didn’t fool him. {Number 2 fooled me almost 50 years ago, because I thought he had got it right, that Number 6 had been a plant} the only trouble was, Number 2 fooled himself! Supposing for a moment that Number 2 had been right, that Number 6 had been planted in The Village by XO4, in order to check on Village security, to check on Number 2. But then Number 2’s first duty as a loyal citizen should have been not to interfere, but he did interfere, he admitted that much himself. There’s a name for that, sabotage! Who is Number 2 working for? For the power behind The Village, he protests. But he could be working for the enemy, or he could simply be a blunderer who has lost his head, either way Number 2 had failed! And they do not like failure here {that’s funny, I thought they never failed}. Number 2 saw it as Number 6 having destroyed him, but no, Number 2 destroyed himself, it was a character flaw, a weak link in the chain of command waiting to be broken. And any chain of command is only as strong as its weakest link. Number 2 begs Number 6 not to report him {I should imagine that Number 1 knows already considering that first scene in Number 2’s office} but Number 2 is to report himself. Had Number 6 picked up that oversized curved red telephone and reported Number 2 himself that game he had been playing would have been up for Number 6. Hence Number 2 having to report a breakdown in control to Number 1, breakdown being the optimum word.


3, ‘Hammer Into Anvil.’
There he is, Number 14 dozing in an armchair in the foyer of the Green Dome. As soon as he hears the pair of steel doors slide open he jumps to his feet, and comes to the attention position as he straightens his jacket, giving Number 2 the impression that he’s been standing like that all the time!

4, ‘Hammer Into Anvil.’
   In 'Hammer Into Anvil' when Number 6 goes to the General Store to buy a small notebook, seeing as I have a fascination with all things stationary myself.
    “Good day sir.”
    “I'd err like a small notebook.”
    “Very good sir.”
    “There's a nice little selection there sir.”
    “That's a nice one, I think I'll have that.”
    “Will that be all sir?”
    “No. I think I'd like mmm..one of these” Number says walking over to the cuckoo clocks.
    “Ah yes sir. Yes sir very good value, special import. What about this type?”
    “No. I'll have this one.”
    Number 6 has dallied with the Shopkeeper-Number 112 before, and now does so again when he buys a cuckoo clock. He doesn't want the one the Shopkeeper suggested, who told Number 2 that he was looking for a specific one. Not so much a specific one, but a specific box!
   Having paid for his purchases Number 6 leaves the General Store and it doesn't take the Shopkeeper long before he's on the telephone to Number 2 in order to report Number 6's unusual activity again. He wasted Number 2's time the first time he reported Number 6's unusual activity, and now he was about to do it again. But then Number 2 only had himself to blame, asking for any unusual activity on the part of Number 6, to him personally. He was just asking for trouble!
   Finally I like the way one of the cuckoo clocks is "cuckooing" as Number 6 enters the General Store, in a way it seems suggestive.


5, ‘Arrival.’
  When the Prisoner on the morning of his arrival in The Village emerges from his cottage and looks up to see a figure leaning out of one for the windows of the Bell Tower. He quickly rushes round to the door of said tower and runs up the steps inside, eventually to come face to face with a statue!
  Now who would put a statue inside the
Bell Tower, and right at the very top? Perhaps the Prisoner arrived in The Village during “Rag Week!” That some of the students of Speedlearn had become somewhat over zealous, and hauled that statue up to the top of the Bell Tower for a joke! Well the joke appears to be on the Prisoner, because there never was any sign of that man who had been leaning out of the window. If he be a natural thing, where did he come from, where did he go?

6, ‘The Chimes of Big Ben.’
    Thankfully for him the chimes of Big Ben are an hour out! He leaves what he thought was the Colonel's office in London, but he has been in The Village all the time. He steps outside and walks towards the Recreation Hall, where Number 2 and Fotheringay are talking together. Number 2 congratulates him and tells Fotheringay to get back to London before any embarrassing questions are asked. Fotheringay asks what’s him next assignment? The Colonel will give him his order when he returns. Nadia then appears, Number 6 stands looking up at her, shoe looking down at him…. “Be seeing you.”
   As Number 6 walks back to his cottage there’s an announcement “Good evening citizens, your local Council wishes to announce another exciting competition. The subject this time… seascapes.” To me that sound like rubbing salt into the wound!
    
  The fact that 4 of these scenes come from ‘Hammer Into Anvil’ is just the way it turned out. I could so easily have simply just selected 6 scenes from my favourite episode ‘Arrival,’ or my second favourite episode ‘Checkmate,’ but that would have been too easy. If you the reader had to choose your own favourite episodes, I wonder which they might be?

Be seeing you

Exhibition of Arts And Crafts

                             “The Arrival”

BcNu

Thought For The Day

    50 years of ‘the Prisoner,’ who would have thought it? And during this year the series actually screened on television by ‘True Entertainment.’ Perhaps they will screen it again before the year is out, I hope so. Mind you I’ve my own screening later in the year, commencing on October 6th, that’s when I first watched ‘Arrival,’ a few days after it was first screened on September 29th 1967 on ATV Midlands and Grampian being part of ITV regional network at the time. But I shall watch the series in black and white, and leaving a two week gap in January 1968, just as it was with the original transmission due to the fact the screening had caught up with production.
    I worked out the other day that I’ve been writing about ‘the Prisoner’ for 28 years, that’s an awfully long time. But I’ve enjoyed it, and I’m still enjoying it. What’s more from time to time the Prisoner does manage to give up one or two of its secrets even after 50 years which is most pleasing when it does. It would be nice to see ‘the Prisoner’ Mini-Moke
HLT 709C fully restored this year. But no-one appears to know where the Mini-Moke is, nor who now owns her, but hope she is in good and caring hands after her hard toil as a farm runabout, and eventual abandonment in the back of an old barn on a farm in the Netherlands back in the late 1960’s.

Be seeing you







Thursday, 20 July 2017

Page 9

    The only time I turn up in ‘the Prisoner’ is in ‘Arrival,’ a woman who trails the cortège of Cobb’s funeral. But I wasn’t permitted to attend Cobb’s funeral, even though we did know each other, we even planned to escape together. I was terribly sad at Cobb’s funeral, I cried. But the funeral was necessary you see, it was a tool to bring Number 6 and I together in mutual mourning for a lost friend.
    I work for Number 2. I was of course assigned to Cobb, and then to Number 6, to be used as a pawn in Number 2’s game. I never meant to betray Cobb, it was that they came for him before he was ready, not that he was expecting them, it’s just that in The Village you only have so long to give them what they want before they take it. I gave Number 6 the
Electro Pass and told him to go before it was too late. He went, but it was no good there is no escape only time for one final game of chess...... And that was the end of Number 9, and never to be seen again, nor be an involved number. After my day Number 8 became the popular number for females who were to betray Number 6, except when 8 was a man. On the face of it Number 14 looks to have betrayed him, and yet did she really? Did she not tell Number 2 that Number 6 had opened his eyes and saw her, her image projected onto the screen? Might she not have known she was being followed when she left her cottage, and therefore led Number 6 through The Village, the woods to the laboratory so to make the discovery he made? Alison did betray Number 6, but in the end she was sorry she had done so, her number was 24, 2 times 6, 4 times 6 equals 24. And finally Monique, the only woman to seek Number 6’s help, and not betray him at the same time!

Be seeing you

Number 7 He’s The Boss!

    In Agatha Christie’s “The Seven Dials Mystery,’ the Seven Dials is a group of criminal-catchers and people who do secret service work for their country. Each member of the group is known by a number, however Number 7 is always missing at meetings. It is not until an emergency meeting of the Seven Dials is called, which Number 7 attends, is the identity of Number 7 is revealed.
   One might expect that Number 1 of the Seven Dials is the boss, but that is not that case, Number 7 turns out to be the boss! And that got me thinking. On the basis of the Seven Dials, the fact that Number 7 never attends their meetings, and the fact that Number 7 is always vacant in The Village, I came up with the idea that somewhere the mysterious Number 7 is the boss behind The Village not Number 1!


Be seeing you

Rover And Out!

    Control here Number Two, I have to report that Rover has gone berserk!
    What do you mean by berserk?
    It doesn’t respond to deactivation.
    What’s the Guardian done..................Well?
    Its here........in the Control Room.
    How did it get in there?
    Through the steel doors.
    I mean into the building
    Through the air conditioning I should think.
    But the air conditioning conduits are narrow.
    Big enough if it reduced itself in size.
    It’s not supposed to do that.
    Try telling it that!
    What’s it doing?
    Nothing now, but before, it attacked and suffocated two Observers.    
    It seems to be interested in the astral map.
    How can you tell?
    I think it’s looking for something.
    Looking for something....don’t be ridiculous man.
    I think it’s looking to go home!
    You mean its extraterrestrial?
    ET for short.
    You think ET wants to go home?
    It seems to be studying the chart.
    How does it expect to get home?
    I don’t know sir. Perhaps if we sent a signal......
    What da da da de da, don’t be ridiculous man, and have the Earth   
invaded with these things!
    They may come anyway, after all we have kept it prisoner here.
    Suppose this should be a small one of its kind?
    What’s it doing now?
    Its beginning to pulsate, its white light, blinding brilliant white light.
    Supervisor, Supervisor tell me what’s happening, go on reporting, Supervisor....... what’s that roaring sound, what’s it doing?
    When a group of armed security guards gained entry to the Control room they found it deserted. There was no sign of the Supervisor, or any of the Observers, they had physically disappeared, or had been absorbed by the creature known as the Guardian or Rover. But of it there was no sign. A search was made, no nook or cranny was missed. The air conditioning was switched off and the conduits filled with a nerve agent. But nothing. Of the Guardian there was no trace. The only anomaly was a round charred area on the floor, slightly concaved.


Be seeing you

Tuesday, 18 July 2017

It’s Inexplicable!

   Who named that Guardian thing Rover? Yes I know Number 6 first called it Rover, but I’ve always thought that’s because of the way the Guardian acts as a guard dog, or retriever, and the way it responded when he threw it a stick in the form of a Mini-Moke to chase. But what if Rover is actually the Guardian’s name? How did Number 6 know what to call it? Perhaps more to the point how did Curtis know what to call the Guardian? Because it is in the guise of Curtis that Number 6 telephoned Number 2.
   “Number Six is dead, Rover got him.”
   It may be supposed that Number 2 told him. But then we are back with the question of how did Number 6 know, Curtis never told him!
   Number 2 is shocked to hear this news, he telephoned the Control Room ordering the Supervisor-Number 106 to deactivate Rover pending further instructions. So Number 2 must have known the Guardian’s name is Rover to have acted upon what Number 6 had said. So too the Supervisor he must have realized what Number 2 was talking about when told to de-activate Rover, otherwise he would have asked Number 2 what he meant by Rover? I can only imagine that the Guardian was referred to as Rover in a deleted scene. More than that it is only in ‘The Schizoid Man’ that the Guardian is referred to as an entity at all, except in ‘Once Upon a Time’ when Number 2 told Number 1 that he can remove that thing, when the Guardian is sitting in his chair at the time.

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Exhibition of Arts And Crafts

                                “Synchronized!”

BCNU

Village Life!


    “Curtis here.”
    Number 2 “Password?”
    “Schizoid Man…..Number Six is Dead.”
    “What!
    “He’s dead, Rover got him.”
    “What got him?”
    “Rover.”
    “What’s Rover?”
    “That big white balloon-like thing.”
    “You mean the Guardian.”
    “Do I? If you mean that big white balloon-like thing then yes the Guardian.”
    “Then why didn’t you say the Guardian…..oh never mind. Control Room, deactivate Rover immediately pending further instruction.”
    Supervisor-106’s voice “Deactivate what sir?”
    “Rover.”
    “What’s Rover when it’s at home?”
    “That large white balloon-like thing.”
    “Oh you mean the Guardian.”
    “Yes the Guardian.”
    “If you mean the Guardian say the Guardian, its not difficult!”
    “Look, I don’t care what it’s called just deactivate the damned thing pending further instructions.”

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Sunday, 16 July 2017

6 of The Best!

   Pictorially there are a multitude of pictures to choose from ‘the Prisoner,’ so to select ‘6 of The Best’ might be an almost impossible thing to do. However I gave it a great deal of consideration and arrived at the following.

1, ‘Arrival.’
   When the Guardian puts in its first appearance. 
   The Guardian has a pinkish hue.  Originally the idea was to have the Guardian absorb its victims, but that idea was obviously dropped. The two pictures here seem to be suggestive of that. Or are they veins and organs of the Guardian?

2, ‘Checkmate.’
   This is my absolute personal favourite. Number 6 is stealing a taxi, it’s the close-up of the two taxis with the Village in the background, for me this is a picture which epitomizes both ‘the Prisoner’ and Portmeirion. 

3, ‘Arrival.’
   The Prisoner-Number 6 is a dab-hand with his fists, and favours good old fashioned brute force on many an occasion. But using brute force against the Village Guardian doesn't work, because of the Guardian’s balloon like quality it offers no resistance.

4, ‘Dance of The Dead.’
   What’s this, meals on wheels? Three house maids, including Number 54 taking three prisoners, including Number 6, their breakfast. It might appear to be a privilege, but it’s a slow mode of transport and by the time the breakfasts are delivered they will be cold!

5, ‘A B and C.’
    Number 2 cuts a very tragic figure towards the end of ‘A B and C’. He was over confident, he underestimated Number 6 which allowed Number 6 to turn the tables on him, revealing him to be “C”. This leaves Number 2 a broken man. There is a headline of The Tally Ho which asks the question “Is Number 2 Fit for Further Term?” which refers not to his ability, but to the question of his health. The fact that the man suffers from a stomach ulcer. But surely his failure is not all of his doing, the doctor Number 14 must bear some of the blame. But sadly it’s Number 2 who must pay for the failure. What’s more, things can only get much worse for this particular Number 2 when we see him next!

6, ‘Once Upon A Time.’
  This is Number 2 having spent the entire night reciting nursery rhymes to the slumbering Number 6. He pulls up the blinds and through squinting tired eyes looks out upon The Village. It gives me the impression that this is how it was for him when he had been brought back to The Village for the second time, or indeed for the very first time, having been abducted to The Village as a prisoner!

  It was a difficult task such is the vast choice of pictures to select from, but this is my personal choice. Of course it will vary greatly from your choice, those who are reading this.

Be seeing you

Village Life!


    Funny, it’s just like being back at school isn’t it Number 6 don’t you think? Perhaps you wouldn’t. Anyway that was the last time you wore a piped blazer, as Captain of the school boxing team. And as a fifth former you were allowed to wear a straw boater, not like the one you’re wearing at the moment admittedly. And you’ve been given a number, you should be used to that, even as a schoolboy you had your own number. But perhaps as you will be now, you were known then more by your school number than your name. Perhaps that’s why you toss that badge into the back of the taxi, along with the straw boater, that they remind you too much of your school days. But you retain the blazer, well a gentleman must have a jacket, if not a hat! Anyway there you go, a new suit of clothes, a new identity, and a free ride home, home being where the heart is, even if that’s not here in The Village. Anyway that cannot be helped seeing as the taxi is only a local service!

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The Pri50ner

     Why did the Prisoner known as Number 6 resign? He resigned because it was a matter of conscience, for a very long time……. he resigned for peace, for peace of mind, because too many people know too much. But if that’s not good enough for you, because you were perhaps expecting more, well try this on for size. It might have taken a few years after the event for Number 6 to come clean about it, well Patrick McGoohan actually, who finally had this to say, “He simply resigns as a matter of choice. He shouldn't have to answer to anyone. It's entirely his prerogative, his God-given right as an individual, to proceed in any way he sees fit. That's the whole point of it all.” You don’t have to tell anyone why you’ve resigned, and I’m of the opinion that the reason behind the Prisoner’s resignation wasn’t important at all, well it was, but only up to a point, because it was the one thing missing from Number 6’s personal file. And they do like to have things brought up to date. But the Prisoner would have realized that if he gave one piece of information away all the rest might very well follow, which is what Number 2 hoped. Yes Number 6 did give the time of his birth away, but he knew there was no danger in giving that away, as they would have known it anyway!
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Friday, 14 July 2017

Quote for The Day

    “So to the rest of the World I’ll be dead.”
    “Confirmation of a known fact.”
                                   {Number 6 and Number 2 – Dance of the Dead}

    A known fact which appears to have been forgotten by the time of ‘Do Not Forsake Me Oh My Darling,’ or at least no-one has told Janet Portland, she is still under the impression that her fiancĂ© ZM73 is still working for her father. Which means she isn’t even aware of ZM73’s resignation!
    In the previous episode of ‘Many Happy Returns’ the original ending had Mrs. Butterworth/Number 2 hand Number 6 a copy of The Tally Ho in which there was a report of an aircraft lost at sea. I never could fathom why this should be reported in The Tally Ho. Surely a national newspaper would have made more sense! Anyway to the outside World Number 6 is now dead. Presumably the Meteor jet aircraft was ditched at sea, wreckage found but no bodies, and perhaps the search was continued in the hope of finding the two crewmen. But that wouldn’t suit The Village administration. Those  searching might stumble across The Village. So cunning a plan was hatched, a body was needed and there very conveniently was the dead body of Number 34. He together with the wallet in his pocket would be amended slightly, so that it is Number 6 who has died in an accident at sea, confirmation of a known fact. The body dumped in the sea to be found by the searchers looking for the two crewmen of the Meteor jet. A cunning plan that didn’t stand the passage of time, it was simply forgotten about by the time of DNFMOMD!

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Two Times 70

    “He is me.”
    “And I am him”
    70 in THEPRIS6
NER EPISODE ‘Harmony’ is in charge of the Talk Therapy. It is his job to talk to Six, to find out what makes Six Six, to open him up so that they can see the Six inside. But 70 has a shadow 70, “He is me” says 70 “And I am him” 70 adds.
    Doubles, twins, look-a-likes, dress-a-likes, and possible clones appear throughout ‘the Prisoner’ series. The gardener and electrician, the photographer Number 113b, and The Tally Ho vender Number 113c, even Number 6 has a double, even doubles. In ‘The Chimes of Big Ben’ when Number 6 is asleep in his bed, one double is seen standing on the balcony of the Green Dome. Then later just before Number 6 is leaving the Green Dome, his double is seen again standing on top of the stone Bandstand. What about Curtis? I’m not counting him, he’s just a look-a-like! But there is Number 1, he’s Number 6, and vice versa. The other thing about identical twins, and doubles, they never meet! Oh Number 113b and his double Number 113c did see each other, but they were not together. And as far as we know the gardener and the electrician are not seen together, certainly not in ‘Arrival’ anyway. Come to think of it, we don’t see either of them again after ‘Arrival!’ It might be that they are two sets of identical twins, or doubles or like Number 6 and Number 1 are the alter egos of each other. But unlike Number 6 and Number 1 they exist together in The Village, having come to terms with each other that they now live in harmony. Perhaps if Number 6 could come to terms with himself, he and his alter ego Number 1 could learn to live with each other, and perhaps achieve peace of mind. Paradoxically I shouldn’t think Number 1 would be too happy to find out he’s been the Prisoner all the time!

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Thursday, 13 July 2017

Undercovers!

    Number 6 was talking to Number 14 in a scene in ‘Hammer Into Anvil, he talked a lot of rubbish asking 14 if he’d slept well. Apparently Number 6 had a terrible night, insomnia, he couldn’t sleep, so restless. That’s what you get for not drinking your nightcap of drugged hot chocolate! Anyway there’s no point lying in bed when  you are awake. So Number 6 got up and went out, and had a walk along the beach, its marvellous that time of day, invigorating, the air I brisk and clear. The rain on your face, the wind in your cheek, don’t look now the waiter is watching…….. Now why did he say that? He must have known the waiter was watching them, because he was. And as soon as Number 6 left the cafe area the waiter went to the kiosk and telephoned Number 2 reporting Number 14’s behaviour. Not only do citizens have the human guardians watching them, but by ‘Hammer Into Anvil’ there are now Undercovers, watching the citizens, ready to report the slightest misdemeanour, or anything out of the ordinary. That Number 112, the shopkeeper he’s another one who couldn’t wait to report Number 6’s unusual activity direct to Number 2. He then went running off to the Green Dome, records and Tally Ho in hand. With Observers, guardians, and undercovers all watching everyone else, it’s a wonder anyone could be able to get away with anything in The Village. Unless of course those who were doing the watching were not being watched themselves, they might be able to get away with something without being observed. And the only way to avoid that would be to have everyone as Undercovers, so that everyone would be watching everybody else. Complete and total surveillance.

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