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Saturday, 16 February 2013

The Therapy Zone

Man Versus Machine
    In allegorical terms, and it's not very often you find me actually using that word, The General is nothing more than "Man versus machine," as is the moment No.6 rips out the wiring and paper of the teleprinter in that final scene of Dance of the Dead.
   Some fans of the Prisoner have spent time trying to put an answer to WHY? Why not? You might answer, but for me the answer was much simpler. The General simply wasn't programmed with the basic facts of WHY? Some fans have gone bonkers over WHY? Me? I went bonkers in trying to go down each and every new avenue which my 4 year research into the Prisoner and all related material took me! Mind you I have learned a great deal along the way.

Patrick McGoohan's The Prisoner
   He wanted the Prisoner to be a family series, one which his daughters could watch. Hence the lack of Pat McGoohan's romantic involvement in either Danger Man or the Prisoner, why he would not kiss Nadia Gray in the romantic night-time scene during The Chimes of Big Ben, when No.6 and Nadia looked to be getting close to each other. He didn't want sex to be part of the Prisoner, yet McGoohan didn't seem to be so choosey when it came to violence or the use of drugs in the series!
  McGoohan didn't want television viewers seeing sex or romance in his series Prisoner, but he didn't mind someone being beaten up, mostly No.6, or No.6 seen to be doing the beating up. Or to show the use of drugs on village inmates, or to suggest human experimentation, not so squeemish about those topics, was he?

The Parady Of McGoohan's Message
    Apparently the rest of us are all villagers to McGoohan's No.1! He, Patrick McGoohan may not have been enthralled, be we were and still are to this day. He got us wearing piped blazers, colourful striped capes, deck shoes and other village attire, as well as carrying golfing umbrellas of differing colours! We worshipped at his shrine - the village, and you wonder who No.1 is? No.6 - Pat McGoohan. Didn't you really get his message?

Which Side Is The Prisoner On?
   Well he tells the new No.2 in ‘Arrival’ "I'm on our side,” that would be the Village then! Well he probably was until the events of ‘Fall Out,’ then he went and resigned, and it was that resignation which saw sir abducted back to the Village as a Prisoner

I'll be seeing you


  1. "Our side" - it never occurred to me that No. 6 ever meant "on the side of the Village". To me he most certainly meant "the Western" side or perhaps "the British". He even may have taken for granted that the Village was actually a creation of "our side". Most likely. - BCNU!

  2. I think at least in "Arrival" but maybe also later on "our side" can still mean "not your side", since the prisoner doesn't have an idea or can not be sure which side runs the village. At least he claims so in Chimes Of Big Ben. On the other hand "ours" could also refer to "the communist" or the other side, since the viewer can not be sure and Number 2 does not know whether Number 6 defected. Or maybe our side is the side of the people who resigned and therefore rejected the village.

    Kind regards,

  3. I wouldn't complicate matters unnecessarily. In "Arrival" after the taxi driver had told him that she had thought he was a Pole or a Czech No. 6 responds "What would a Pole or Czech be doing here?"

    To me this "here" is quite telling: No. 6 cannot possibly know where "here" exactly is, geographically, politcally. But everybody in those days knew about the Iron Curtain, that under normal circumstances no one would be able to travel to Western countries easily. So, he must have been sure to some degree still being within the reach of his "own" side, the side he'd been working for which obviously was the British intelligence (unless of coure, he was one of those double agents we hear so much about these days) and the Village being a creation of his own side.

    Not ruling out here that the Village although set up by some British or Western service could have developed its own agenda thus factually no longer belonging to "his" side. Did I write not to complicate matters...? - BCNU!

  4. Hi Arno,

    that's a very good point, why No6 must have been sure about on which side of the Iron Curtain the village was. I haven't thought about that. But I also like the idea that the village could have developed its own agenda. It's almost said, isn't it? "I am definitely an optimist, that's why it doesn't matter who Number 1 is. It doesn't matter which "side" runs the Village." "It's run by one side or the other." "Oh certainly, but both sides are becoming identical. What in fact has been created? An international community."