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Friday, 14 December 2018

The Prisoner Means What It Is!

    The Prisoner it means what it is, but what exactly is it? First and foremost it’s a television series. Its drama, action and adventure, something to lose oneself in for fifty minutes, escapism if you prefer. And Number 6 is the hero, but he turns out to be the villain was well. While Number 6 is countering the machinations of Number 2, he as Number 1 is giving the orders at the same time! Who do you think issued that termination order against Dutton? My money is on Number 1. But of course we’re not supposed to know who Number 1 is, not until ‘Fall out.’ So it’s not the same the second time of watching, because we know who Number 1 is, of Number 6’s battle with himself, in which others may suffer as collateral damage! I think I preferred it when I didn’t know who Number 1 is, it was simpler then, the unknown villain behind the big door. Mind you no matter how many times one sits through ‘the Prisoner,’ Number 6 still doesn’t know who Number 1 is, not until that confrontation in ‘Fall Out.’
   “Who is Number One?” the Prisoner demands to know.
   “You are Number Six” Number 2 replies.
   Then some clever clogs came up with the idea of where to place the emphasis, so to makes it appear that Number 6 is Number 1. That way enthusiasts can say we knew who Number 1 was right from the very beginning. But I prefer it simply that Number 2 is telling the Prisoner that he is Number 6, that seems fine to me, and I’m happy with it, that’s all that matters. If people disagree then that’s fine.
    Because of the way ‘Fall Out’ ends its possible to stick the episode at the start of the series, and that’s alright because ‘Arrival’ begins at the end of ‘Fall Out,’ it completes the vicious circle. In the Prisoner’s end is his beginning, and his future looks to continue just as his immediate past. I have tried to find ways in which it’s possible to break that vicious circle, and there are ways. However to do that at any point those within the circle must come to realize what it is that plays out time and time again, over and over repeatedly. And there lies the rub, ‘the Prisoner’ is the time and time again no matter what. Those involved are incapable of realizing they are trapped in a vicious circle, therefore it impossible for anyone to change any course of events. That’s because it’s not filmed in such a way that the hero begins to realize that he’s the prisoner of a vicious circle, and each time the events play themselves out the hero cannot attempt to alter the course of events taking place. ‘The Prisoner’ is only a vicious circle because it has the start of the opening credits stuck on the end of ‘Fall Out,’ making it begin all over again. But then we are happy to see the events play themselves out, we should be used to it after 51 years. Perhaps that’s why we attempt to impose our own ideas,
interpretations, and beliefs on the Prisoner, to make it mean something altogether different. Or at least to give situations new meaning, but then the Prisoner means what it is no matter what we make of it, rightly or wrongly.

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Who Is That On The Telephono?

      It's a ridiculous telephone when you look at it, however it is the hotline to Number 1, and vice versa to those who are second only to 1, that's Number 2.
    At the beginning of the episode ‘A B and C,’ Number 2 has a nervous look on his face as the telephone begins to bleep, he picks it up
   “Number Two here. Yes sir, I am doing my best. He's very difficult. I know it's important.......... He's no ordinary person sir, but if I had a free hand........ I know sir yes I'm not indispensable.”
   Later, after Number 6 has paid Number 2 a visit, he is again put under pressure by Number 1 via the hotline. “Yes sir, within two days. You have my word....... Yes sir, I realise my future is at stake. Two days, I guarantee.”
   Yet despite his word and guarantee, it all goes pear shaped for Number 2, and it is as the oversized red telephone begins to bleep in the laboratory, he knows what is coming. In fact Number 2 had half expected the telephone to start to bleep after the failure with 'B', but now with the complete failure to discover the reason behind Number 6's resignation Number 2's fate is sealed.
    Number 2 of ‘Hammer into Anvil’ is another Number 2 to have access to the red telephone, well not all Number 2's use this peculiarly over-sized red, curved telephone you know. Although it is seen on the desk of certain Number 2’s in later episodes. But it is only actors Colin Gordon and Patrick Cargill who are forced to use this prop, although Gordon does get away with not having to do so in ‘The General.’ Anyway it is down this telephone that Number 2 gives Number 1 all his assurances, that he doesn't need any help, that he can manage. And it is a second Number 2 who gets the chop by telephone, even though he has reported himself as being a breakdown in control, and in need of being replaced.
   Actually, this telephone sitting on Number 2's desk must be a constant reminder of Number 1's ever presence, being just a phone call away. I mean no-one is free of observation. Take Number 2 for example. There he was, having learned of his failure to Number 6's success, that almost instantly that oversized red telephone began to bleep. So Number1 must surely have been watching to have learned of Number 2's failure so quickly.

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Thursday, 13 December 2018

Citizen No.8

    I guess that puts 8 pretty far up in the rankings, that’s a mere 6 between itself and Number 1. Nadia of course wasn’t really a citizen of The Village, more a plant, so she doesn’t really count in the order of things especially since she left The Village. But she played her part well enough, a woman in distress. The next Number 8 was a completely different kettle of fish, a citizen yes, but one conditioned through hypnotism to betray people and their escape plans. This Number 8 was in love with Number 6, but that love was manufactured. He saw through her, he saw through her tears, and we never saw her again!
    When the number 8 is reallocated it’s to a woman who works in the cipher room, it is she who must oversee a daily prognosis report on Number 6. She delivers it personally to an interim Number 2, and goes through its finer points. However she gets the hump when the interim Number 2 belittles her complicated explanation as to why the computer refused to give up the data after having “Fission prognosis programming must include a quantum permutation of all cause and effects of supplementary elements.”
    “In other words the computer calculated the old woman’s behaviour would change the behaviour pattern of Number Six.”
    The final Number 8 turns out to be a man! He devised a method of putting a subject into a dangerous environment, dosing said subject with hallucinatory drugs, and speaking through microphones. But this Number 8 allowed himself to become involved and do what he would in a real situation. It’s not been a bed of roses being Number 8. Once I betrayed someone, and would have done a second time, but I wasn’t clever enough! Then I portrayed myself as an efficient woman working in the cipher room, the next I’ve had a sex change, and turns out to be a psychotic homicidal maniac who strangles the same girl twice with my bare hands. Then I take what is termed as the easy way out, committing suicide by throwing myself from a balcony! Number 8 is a poor number for anyone to have.

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Wednesday, 12 December 2018

60 Seconds With No.42

    So what did you do to Number Forty-two?
    Number Forty......I mean Dutton.
    Oh Dutton. Well each man has his breaking point.
    And you deliberately took him to it?
    I took him beyond it, I had permission.
    From whom?
   Number Two, she told me it would allow me to experiment, after all Dutton was dispensable.
    But Dutton had told you everything he knew.
    Ah, I’m not so sure about that, he was certainly reluctant to go further, but then I always win in the end.
    And Number Six?
    If we wait for orders we’ll never get results. There are times when you simply have to grasp the nettle.......
    Even though it makes our hands bleed?
    There’s no blood on my hands!
    But you did have one of your failed experiments buried.
    How did you know that?
    I have it from a very reliable source.
    There’s no pictorial evidence.
    No, but the grisly scene was re-enacted in Village Day!
    Village Day?
    A little after your time doc!

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Quote For The Day

   “But I must have them!”
   “For the last time, your week’s credit allowance is all used up. Come back tomorrow.”
   “But I can’t go through an entire day without my sweets!”
                     {Number 36 and the Kiosk attendant - It’s Your Funeral}
    Thursday is Appreciation Day, so the day Number 36’s weekly allowance had been all used up by was a Wednesday, and there was still another three days in the week, so how would Number 36 manage? The kiosk attendant told 36 to come back tomorrow. Why did he tell her that? Thursday was generally payday in Britain at that time, so perhaps that’s the day in The Village when weekly credit allowances were placed on credit cards, and Number 36 would be able to satisfy her sweet tooth. Except Number 6 bought her a bag of sweets, seeing another lady in distress, although Number 6 said “Candy.” Number 2 said Number 6 never eats candy, and that’s an Americanism. Being English Number 6 should have said a bag of sweets!

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A Question of Time!

    The Colonel “The Group Captain said he wouldn’t be a minute.”
    Thorpe “Yes.”
    “How long does it take to put on a pair of boots?”
    “I don’t know a couple of minutes perhaps.”
    “How long has it been now?”
    “Why do you ask?”
    “The Group Captain was already wearing his boots.”
    “Why are you worrying about the Group Captains boots?”
    “He should have come out of the kitting room by this time!”
    “There he goes now.”
    “Did you see that milkman?”
    “Milkman, no!”
    “We didn’t order any milk.”
    “There was no need, we already had some for our tea. But why are you worrying about the milkman?”
    “I don’t know, he took too long that’s all.”
    “The milkman?”
    “No, the Group Captain.”
    “What do you mean he took too long?”
    “Even two minutes is too long for a man to take in order to put on his boots, when he’s already wearing them. So what was he doing?”
    “I shouldn’t worry about it, they are on their way now.”
    “Yeeeesssss. I get the feeling we’ve seen the last of him.”
    “Probably just as well.”
    “A bit unkind don’t you think? After all he’s on old, old friend who doesn’t give up!”
    “Don’t we know it!”

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Monday, 10 December 2018


    He might not be white, round, have the behavioural qualities of a balloon but he’s a guardian all the same, but one of a different kind. He like others of his kind who work undercover, this one’s a gardener. Number 6 told this gardener that he’d like a word with him. The gardener told him that he’d have to! You can tell a guardian by his authoritative attitude, that’s why other prisoners like the Rook, shopkeeper, painter and the others obeyed Number 6. He demonstrated his authority towards them.
    So what do these guardians do? They spend their working day working, but at the same time they watch and report, like the shopkeeper in ‘Hammer Into Anvil,’ Number 112. He watched Number 6’s unusual activity in his shop and reported that activity to Number 2. They watch and report. It’s not enough to have surveillance cameras and microphones everywhere, and the deterrent of Rover, they have to have human guardians on the ground, in the field so to speak. Informants! It’s no wonder they don’t need a police force and a police station. For the most part citizens behave themselves, they toe the line because they don’t know who they can trust. Well they could, until the Rook put to Number 6 his own test, and found him to be a guardian, an infiltrator who goes about trying to trick innocent citizens in engaging in escape plots. But the Rook got it wrong, Number 6 got it wrong  when he took command of the escape plot, and that’s why no group of people could ever escape The Village, not being able to know who to trust or not. Number 8 wanted to help Number 6 with his escape attempt, or at least she could tell him what not to try. After all she had helped so many others with their escape plans, but then she’s still in The Village and because of that Number 6 wouldn’t take the risk in trusting her. And yet he expected others to trust him, for all they knew he could well have been an infiltrator trying to trick them. Originally one of Number 6’s reliable men had been an infiltrator, designed to find out what Number 6 was up to. But Number 6 discovered Number 32 was a fifth columnist, and got rid of him. Number 6’s downfall was his air of authority, hence the Rook putting to Number 6 his own tests. Number 6 would have made an excellent guardian, if we’re judging by attitudes.

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