Search This Blog

Wednesday, 31 October 2012

The Therapy Zone

   Free For All
Although shown as the fourth episode in the Prisoner series, this episode was in fact the second to be filmed back to back with Arrival. Free For All was one of two episodes to be hit by the 1960's censorship with the well staged but sadistic fight sequence in the Rover cave being deleted for the transmission in the premier UK screening. Stuntman Alf Joint choreographed the sequence and along with Peter Brace, another well known fall guy, played the motor mechanics who beat Number Six senseless. This story gives the only view of the 'Cat & Mouse' night club. And although not credited, the Supervisor in this episode is Peter Sawnwick and is seen via stock footage from Arrival. The opening credits give director as Paddy Fitz, which is a pseudonym of Patrick McGoohan, coming from his mother's maiden name of Fitzpatrick.
    In one later scene in the episode, Number Six is driven by Number fifty-Eight along the Sea front a short distance away from The Village, passed a cottage called White Horses which is seen briefly. White Horses is the cottage where McGoohan and his family stayed whilst filming was taking place at Portmeirion in September of 1966. This led to the cottage becoming a favourite cottage for fans of the series to stay in Portmeirion. But there is a drawback, White Horses cottage is not available in the winter months, as certain seasonal high tides, and the cottage being part of the sea wall at Portmeirion, causes the cottage to flood!

Living In Harmony  
    There is no standard title sequence in this episode, but a parody in the style of the western story {although the 1984 Channel 4 screening of the Prisoner the standard opening sequence had been inserted into the episode, possibly by someone who did not know the series at all, and thought that with Living In Harmony the standard opening sequence had been left out}. Five sequences hit censorship problems when the episode was originally screened and was either deleted or edited prior to transmission, a hanging, a fight with Zeke, the Prisoner being dragged back to Harmony and a pair of sequences where Cathy is attacked. The episode marks the only credited appearance of Frank Maher {as third gunman}.
    The Harmony Township was a Borehamwood backlot, redressed and re-used several times in the series. It has been claimed that the episode was removed from American scheduling, owing to the hero's refusal to carry a gun undermining the Vietman war recruitment drive, or being seen to promote mind-altering drugs! Actor Alexis Kanner said that in his role as the Kid, he was faster on the draw than McGoohan during the end gunfight. The episode does not give the audience any confirmation that this is a ‘Prisoner’ episode. It is not until the very end that the familiar scene returns.

The School Uniform
    I remember my school days, and how proud I used to be to wear the school uniform. Oh we didn't have any fancy piping on the school blazer, or straw boater come to think of it. We did have a school cap with the school badge on it. No, no piping on the blazer to denote who the Captain of the boxing team was, or the cricket team, football, and even fencing. Yes, we did have fencing, high fences all around the perimeter of the school!
   Then when my class reached the fifth year, the headmaster decreed that we could abandon the school uniform, and come to school in our own clothes. Well I still came to school in a blazer, but a fancy one with scarlet lining, and a fancy motif.
   I recall how my classmates had hated the school uniform, simply because it was a uniform. And so were happy to be able to go to school wearing their own clothes.
   Then we left school, and in the outside world I took to wearing three-piece suits, well I likd to look smart, and also in wearing what I liked I displayed individualistic tendencies, unlike my old school friends, and the like. Because as they had hated wearing the school uniform, having left school they all took to wearing Denim. which was okay as an individual, but when they were all in the same public house/bar, they all looked the same. They might have said goodbye to the school uniform, but having left school they had all taken to wearing a new uniform, one of denim!
   Today I have taken to wearing denim, black jeans with the jacket of my once ‘Arrival’ suit, which is very trendy as it happens.

Now we shall all sing the old school song...... oh. We didn't even have a school song!

Be seeing you

No comments:

Post a comment