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Sunday, 31 March 2013

Wishing You A Very Happy Easter


What’s That Number 6 Up To?

    "Well I would just like to congratulate you."
    "Congratulate me No.6. I don't understand"
    "Yes, congratulations. You have what you wanted. Now we'll see just how long you can keep it. You won't have it for very long."
    "Why not?"
    "One flew over the cuckoo’s nest!"
    "Well it's been nice talking to you. But I can't stand here all day holding your hand!"
    "You'll regret this No.6!"
    "No I won't, but I expect you will. Be seeing you..... won't I?"

Project Village

    There is no Number 7 in the Village. There is no logical reason for there not being a 7 in the Village, not that logic plays a great deal when it comes to the Village, because it doesn’t. Why is there no Number 7 in the Village I asked. What was I told was, don’t enquire! Well I did, enquire, and this is what I was told.
    The number 7 is considered to be a lucky number, just as 13 is considered to be unlucky. Well one day a man woke up to find himself in the Village, he was given the number 7. He was not a happy man, to be taken from the world he knew, his wife, his children, his friends. Here there was no-one for him.
    At first, like so many before him, he refused to wear, accept, or respond to his number! He refused to talk. He refused coercion, he would not bend, not even a little. But as time wears on, Number 2‘s games begin to wear a man down, and once his spirit is broken, well he tries to escape. Number 7 came up with a plan. There was no-one he could trust, so he kept his plan secret. I can only assume that he decided to put “them” to sleep. 7 changed you see, he began to co-operate. He began to settle down, to join in. He played chess, wrote articles for The Tally Ho newspaper. He set himself a daily routine, and stuck to it rigorously. His day never varied, so much so that the Observers knew what Number 7 would be doing at any particular time of any particular day. You could set your watch by the daily activities of Number 7.
    7am wash and shave, 7:30 breakfast. 8am a walk round the Village. 8:15 am buys a copy of The Tally Ho at kiosk. 8:20am coffee at the cafĂ©. 9am work out at the gymnasium. 10am plays chess with Number 43. 11:30am returns to cottage. 12pm attends the regular brass band concert. 1pm lunch 1:30pm an afternoon stroll through the Village. 2pm climbs the Bell tower. 2:15pm returns home, there he sits writing his latest column for The Tally Ho.
    And so it was the same regime of activities day after day, week after week………until one day in the Control Room “I can’t find Number 7” an Observer reported “I’ve looked everywhere.” “Well he must be somewhere. Look again” the Supervisor ordered.
    The Observers looked again, but of Number 7 there was no sign. The entire Village was put on yellow alert, while the Village Guardian was put on orange alert. All posts were on yellow alert and set to search certain sectors. While all units made a complete search of the Village. They searched all along the cliffs. Along the beach, out across the beach into the wide mouth of the estuary, all the way to the Outer Zone they searched. They even searched the island in the middle of the estuary, as well as the far side of the estuary.
    A thorough search of the woods was made, and the wide open spaces of the countryside beyond, almost all the way to the mountains. The Observers kept looking for hour after hour, they looked in all the places they had looked before. But of Number 7 there was no sign, it was as though he had simply disappeared into thin air! This put Number 2 in a right foul mood, because there was only one answer. Number 7 had escaped. No-one had ever escaped the Village before!
    The search for Number 7 carried on for days. Having discovered no trace of Number 7 anywhere, the search was stretched beyond the Outer Zone. M.S. Polotska carried out a sea search, while the helicopter took to the air as a search inland and over the hills was made. All to no avail, there wasn‘t any sign of Number 7 anywhere. Operatives in the Department of Visual Records searched hours of surveillance film footage working backwards to the last point when Number 7 was seen in the Village. That point was just after he’d said goodnight to his personal maid, who had just made his nightcap, a cup of hot chocolate and went to bed. A number of citizens who knew Number 7 personally were brought in for questioning, while others were interrogated and not beyond the use of mind altering truth drugs. But all swore that they did not know where Number 7 was, or that he had decided to escape, which was true.
    How Number 7 actually escaped the Village remains a mystery to this day, his file is marked “Missing - Presumed Escaped.” It was Number 1 who had the number 7 struck from the Village, declaring that no number should even contain the digit 7. It would be this action that would expunge the number 7 from the Village forever.

     Beyond the confines of the Village on the other side of the woods, there is a wide expanse of open countryside. At the far end of the pasture there is a long hedgerow. Just beyond the hedgerow there lies a ditch. A deep ditch with steep sides. It’s almost completely overgrown, and yet there are tell tale signs that something had recently rolled down one of the steep sides of that ditch. Lying in the bottom of the ditch is a slowly decomposing corpse, still dressed in a red and white striped anorak and beige coloured trousers, with blue deck shoes upon it’s feet. Pinned to the red anorak is a penny farthing badge with the red numeral 7. His head lolls to one side upon it’s broken neck. As far as I’m aware, 7 still lies there today, in his makeshift grave, unmarked and undisturbed.

- Be seeing you

Exhibition of Arts and Crafts

  Simply entitled      "Freedom!"   


I Have Taken His Place, I Am The New No.2

   To the question of "where did the old No.2's go when they were replaced Patrick McGoohan said. "I think they disappeared without a trace. They went to the bottom of the deck - as per some of the Chinese and Russian friends that disappear. They just left."
   Well one particular No.2 didn't leave, he ended up in the psychiatric ward of the hospital! Another, at the end of Free For All was allowed to leave, what happened after that we cannot say. But I cannot believe that they simply disappeared, there were too many No.2's for that. Surely with at least 19 No.2's, and that doesn't take into account the subdivided No.2's of the Town Council, or perhaps that's the answer in itself, being sent off into oblivion, questions would surely be asked. Especially when you think that soon after his return to London, No.2 once of the Chimes of Big Ben and Once Upon A Time, returned to the Houses of Parliament via the Lords entrance.
   I suppose it all amounts to my having spent the best part of the past thirty years studying the Prisoner series, where as Patrick McGoohan saw the Prisoner series as a job, and when that job was finished it was over for him. Well over for him  in as much as the media and fans alike, would allow it to be finished for McGoohan who hasn't thought as in-depth where the Prisoner is concerned as perhaps you and I have over the past years. And I suppose if time is spent thinking about it probably begs the question; "If McGoohan hasn't been too bothered, have I been wasting my time?"

Be seeing you

The Therapy Zone

The Two Faces Of Number 2  

   This is the smiling, happy face of No.2, as she masquerades as the maid No.58. In fact judging by her attitude during the election period of Free for All, No.2 really does appear as though she is enjoying herself. However by the end of the episode we see the other side to No.2's character, her darker side.
   No.2 informs No.6, who has just taken a beating from the two mechanics, that this is but the beginning, That they have many ways and means, but they don't wish to damage him permanently.
   Well if this is the other face of No.2, I shouldn't care to be in No.6's deck shoes! Whatever this No.2's intentions are towards No.6 are during her term of office, can only be speculated upon. But one thing is for sure, judging by the severe looking No.2, any intentions towards No.6 cannot be good for him! And she will have some kind of harm done to him I'll be bound.
   In this particular case, the two faces of No.2, are rather like Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, or No.1 and No.6. You see, just like No.6 and No.2, we all have dark side which must surely emerge to the surface at one time or another. A dark side which none of us could live without, for the darker side gives us strength, it makes the type of decisions our other lighter side would rather not have to make. The one side good, the other evil if you like, but together they make us who we are, and are unable to do without the one or the other.

Number 6 Is Dead......... Rover Got Him!
    And what if by some curious quirk of fate, that that statement is correct, that Rover did in fact attack the wrong No.6. Where would that leave Curtis? Perhaps Curtis then, after the death of the real No.6, quickly decided to maintain the persona of No.6, and try to escape the village. And thereby escaping the possible wrath of No.1 for his part in the death of No.6.
   Of course Curtis would have to fool No.2 into thinking he was No.6, to act and behave accordingly and thereby escaping the village, otherwise No.2 might smell a rat! There was one flaw in Curtis' escape plan, in that he played the role of No.6 too well. He had to feign his somewhat nervous and strung up state, and pretend that he has had no time to think about No.2's proposition which he put to Curtis when he arrived in the village. Not to mention that duff line about reporting to the General, well not to report to him personally....... "For Pete's sake you know what I mean."
   Curtis' impersonation as No.6 was perfect, so perfect that it put a nagging doubt in No.2's head, who went off to talk to the pilot of the helicopter, before testing No.6 "You won't forget to give my regards to Susan will you?" "I won't" says No.6 slipping on his blindfold.
   And that was the flaw you see, Curtis played his part too well, and responded as No.6 would have done. After all, how could No.6 have known that..... "Susan died a year ago!"
   So where would that leave Curtis and No.2? It is not impossible to carry on this interpretation to it's ultimate climax. So to save both their skins, No.2 arranged for Curtis to maintain his deception by continuing to live in the village..... in the guise and persona of No.6!

Number 2
   With her Elfin like looks, and almost Impish like behaviour, you might be mislead into thinking that she would do harm to No.6. But on the contrary, this fairylike creature is in fact No.6 guardian angel. For when she sees the doctor carrying out a medical experiment on No.6, No.2 orders the doctor to stop, to get that man Dutton back to the hospital. The doctor-No.40 reads the situation as No.6 was about to talk, although as No.2 puts it "he'd have died first. You can't force it out of this man, he's not like the others." No.2 doesn't want No.6 broken, he must be won over. No.2 tells the doctor that No.6 has a future with them, and that there are other ways!
   So this No.2, has a devious mind and a cunning plan. She also doesn't find any difficulty as Peter Pan, the little boy who never grows up. Nor had the actress, the late Mary Morris, any problems saying such lines as "Then how very uncomfortable for you old chap." In fact Mary Morris played her role as No.2 in a very masculine way. And then at the end of the episode as she laughs, her Elfin looks really stand out, to the effect that all that is missing are a pair of pointed ears to complete the picture!

Be seeing you

Saturday, 30 March 2013

Teabreak Teaser

What's is wrong with the following journey itinerary during 'The Chimes of Big Ben?'

    'Gdansk - Danzig - Copenhagen - London'



Quote For The Day

   Maid-No.56 "A woman is always impatient to wear a new dress. How do I look?"
   No.6 "Different. The maids come and they go!"
   "We'll get along."
   "I'm sure you get along with everybody!"
   "I've a good mind to report you."
   "I'm new here!"
                                      {Dance Of The Dead}
    Seeing as how 'Dance of the Dead' is the eighth episode on 'the Prisoner' series, it's difficult to see how No.6 could be new in the Village, after what, a passage of months? And yet, if 'Dance of the Dead' was meant to be the second episode in the series, No.6 saying "I'm new here" would make perfect sense. Certainly judging by the Prisoner's attitude 'Dance of the Dead' should be a much earlier episode in the series. But we have to work with what we have, not what might have been. And yet, we still might make sense of what No.6 said, and the reasoning stems form the fact of the previous episode 'Many Happy Returns. The fact that the Prisoner has been away from the Village for almost a month, and has recently returned, might make No.6 a recent new arrival in the Village!

Be seeing you

Who's That On The Telephono?

    No.6 "Hello doctor, I'm on grey."
    No.249 "As it happens so am I."
    "Good, that means we're on the same wavelength."
    "I thought we were on the same telephono!"
    "How can we be on the same telephono?"
    "Well you said you were on grey, and so am I."
    "Ah yes, I see what you mean. It's the same prop!"
    "Can't we afford two then?"
    "Not after so much money has been pumped into the first seven episodes we can't, no!"
    "Well what is it you want?"
    "Well more money might not be a bad thing...."
    "This isn't in the script is it?"
    "No, you're right. I want to speak to someone?"
   "The doctor."
   "Doctor who?"
   "Oh no not him."
   "Ah doctor Watt."
   "I said what."
   "Yes, what's your name?"
   "I don't have a name, I have a number 249."
   "Ah, mister Two Hundred and Forty-Nine."
   "If you like. Now what can I do for you?"
   "Well it's like this doctor. Everytime I lift my left arm it hurts."
   "Well don't do it then. Other than that keep taking the pills!"

Be seeing you

Why The Crosspiece? by our own reporter

   Because it's an easier way to restrain No.6, that's why!
    It would appear that if the reason for his resignation cannot be tricked out of No.6, however they are well prepared to "beat" it out of him. But in having done so, have they not "damaged the tissue?" And even now, having taken a beating for his pains, No.6 is still not prepared to talk. In fact the only good thing to come out of all this election rigmarole, is that the pair of mechanics, who No.6 dealt with aboard that jet boat, during his attempt to escape during the election period of Free For All, eventually got their revenge upon No.6.

Your own reporter
Photograph by No.113b
Be seeing you

The Therapy Zone

Page 6
   There I was having just graduated from school, and the headmaster asked me if I had anything to say. Well of course I hadn't, apart from "Thank you for everything." Then he asked me why did I resign, resign from what? I mean I was about to leave school and hadn't done anything, I'd lived no life at all..... But he went further demanding to know why I'd resigned, grabbing me by the lapels of my blazer and shouting. We ended up struggling on the floor.... I think. Then suddenly it all went black!
Living In Harmony is possibly the very first Virtual Reality Role Playing Game developed by No.8.
   After all the only Real person in the American frontier town of Harmony is No.6. Not even Cathy, the Kid, or the Judge were actually in Harmony as they were tucked up in the comparative safety of the Green Dome.
  From there in the Green Dome No.2-the Judge, No.8-the Kid, and No.22-Cathy speak to No.6 though microphones, although the Kid doesn't actually speak. And No.6 has been filled with hallucinatory drugs, so all the Towns people who the stranger-No.6 encounters only exists in his mind. And that could be said of the village itself, but we won't go down that trail for the moment.
   So when the stranger takes on the Kid in a gun fight, but as it turns out all he's facing in that fun fight is nothing more than a cardboard cut out!
    As is the Judge, and all those expensive horses. But one thing, there's no cardboard cut out of Cathy...... why?
    A dangerous experiment or a simple bit of fun? Either way it was deadly enough for No.22 who was strangled by the bare hands of No.8, who turned out to be as psychotic as the character of the Kid he played, they being one and the same it would seem.
   You see they all became involved, and did what they would in a real situation, looks like No.8 had problems before all this started. Such was his fixation with Cathy which he transponded to No.22. But even No.22 found herself getting involved and falling in love with the stranger. Her dying words...... "I wish it had been real."
   On a final note, something which I find funny, is the mental picture of No.6 and all the judges men riding imaginary horses, you know, as you did, or do as a child!

Number 1
  We might have guessed really, after all we had been told right from the very beginning who Number 1 is. There we were, going around asking "Who is number 1?, and putting forward suggestions of our own, the Supervisor in the control room. Even that of No.2 himself or herself, even the Butler. And yet in hindsight, we had been given the answer, we just simply hadn't been able to recognise it, the first, second, or even third time of viewing.
   Today there can be no doubt who No.1 is. No.1 is anyone who wants to be No.1!

Dance Of The Dead
   Is the darkest of the 17 episodes of the Prisoner, as No.6 finds the body of a dead man on the beach that morning. Then keeps the cadaver so he can attach it to a lifebelt and cast it adrift with the amended wallet in his pocket, a message for however may find it! Then in the way No.6 lead the citizens in a dance along the corridors of the Town Hall. The way that everyone at the dance was to originally to have died, except for No.6. Which of course never took place in the actual episode.
   The doctor-No.40 seen having one of his failed medical experiments buried, again a scene which we do not see in the actual episode. That originally No.2's costume character was intended to have been that of Jack the Ripper. And No.2's own use of that cadaver which was retrieved from the sea, to be amended and made use of so that it is No.6 who has died in an accident at sea.
  And don't forget that No.6 was sentenced to death by the three judges at his trial for the possession of a radio. The sentenced in the name of the people, the people carry out the sentence in the name of justice!
    ‘Dance of the Dead,’ an apt title for such a dark episode.

Be seeing you

Friday, 29 March 2013

Village Life!

   Fear not sir for whom the hearse calls. This time it's for some other poor soul!


Patricia Keen

    Patricia Margaret Keen born 21st of October 1933, she played the role of a nurse {No.256} in 'The Schizoid Man' sadly died on the 1st of March 2013 aged 79.
   Pat was born in Willesdon in north-west London. A versatile actress, she had a successful career in supporting roles for half a century. She was as happy in Chekhov or Ibsen plays, as she was feeding lines to comedian Les  Dawson.
Be seeing you

Exhibition of Arts and Crafts

    A portrait of No.2 from my Black and White period


Thought For The Day

    If Number One does indeed have the face of Number Six, perhaps the encounter of the Prisoner with the darker side of himself is the way to destroy a system of evil and oppression. But that clearly contradicts the literal storylines of the whole series, which demonstrates the elusiveness of power and the impossibility of one individual being able to control an entire social system - or destroy one. To my mind, the allegorical level, which I have never really been happy with, within 'the Prisoner,' should be consistent with the literal level, not contradict it.


No.1’s The Boss.............

............. This No.6 tells No.2 during his ordeal during the episode of ‘Once Upon A Time,’ yet he knew it as early as ‘Free For All.’
No.6 "What physically happens if I win?"
No.2 "Then you're the boss!."
No.6 "No.1's the boss."
No.2 "Join me. If you win," he suggests "No.1 will no longer be a mystery to you if you see what I mean."
   Well we don't quite see what No.2 means, unless of course the meaning is that No.6 would come face to face with No.1 if he wins the election. So then why didn't No.6 then take the opportunity to pick up the phone and speak to No.1 after his winning the election, his rise to being the new No.2, from the relative comfort of his office in the Green Dome I wonder? After all he telephoned the manager of the Labour Exchnage, but then perhaps it wasn't known at that time just who No.1 was going to turn out to be..... No.6 himself. And even if it was known........ well that would have been giving too much away to early don't you think?
   But then, we all want to be No.1 don't we, top-dog. And we're told often enough that if you don't look after No.1, meaning yourself, then no one else will. Obvious really, although it wasn't 46 years back!


The Therapy Zone

A Change Of Mind
    Subtlety seems to have been thrown out with the bath water in this episode, because this particular No.2 is happy to allow "mob rule" in the village. To borrow No.6's own words "Good old fashioned brute force can be very effective" as the citizens having finally had enough of his unmutuality, turn upon him with force and violence!
   Lashing out with their umbrellas, No.56 seems to take real pleasure from this, as No.6 is picked up, manhandled and dragged all the way to the hospital.
   Throughout No.6's ordeal in the village, he's roughed up more often than not. And pictured here, No.6 has had to eat his own words as he takes a pounding. But don't forget, we mustn't damage the tissue...... oh they forgot!

Many Happy Returns
    You know that moment during Many Happy Returns when the door to No.6's cottage opens, and Mrs Butterworth-No.2 walks in carrying a birthday cake with 6 lighted candles on it for No.6.
   Then why not accompany that scene with the tune "Happy birthday to you, happy birthday to you....." After all that piece of incidental music had been adapted for that scene, I heard it played on the third cd of that Prisoner disc set. So why wasn't it used I wonder? That piece of music would have suited the scene very well I think.

Mirror Mirror   

   If things were not bad enough, they have now taken away the new identity of No.6, that which they once gave him. It really makes one doubt just exactly who one is, doesn't it?
    So No.6, what do you see in the depths of the mirror?
   Be careful No.6, and take heed because you may not like what you see.
    It's quite chilling isn't it, the two faces of No.6 are revealed!
    It's rather like the strange case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, wouldn't you say? Until finally the face of his other self is finally revealed, his Mr. Hyde to Dr. Jekyll.
    And what's more, he looks tired and drained, as though he's been put through the mill more than once!

Dance Of The Dead
    After No.6's first meeting with his observer No.240, she hurries away towards the Town Hall in order to take up her duties in the control room.
    No.6 takes it into his head to follow No.240, that's a good one, the observed following his observer!
   But suddenly that white membranic village guardian has other ideas and impedes No.6's progress enough to give No.240 a head start. Then goes off for a second, allowing No.6 to mount the steps and follow in his observers footsteps. But then reappears again impeding No.6's progress along the cobbled path.
   No.240 approaches the pair of wrought Iron gates, the other side of those and the street lies the Town Hall. She looks back for a second, as she realises that she is being followed by No.6!
    But to save her there is again the village guardian, as it continues to impede No.6, and give No.240 time to cross the street and enter the Town Hall.
   There is no force used by this membranic being against No.6, nor does it emit its blood curdling roar, or attempt to suffocate No.6 into unconsciousness. It simply glides in and out of No.6's path at given moments, with gentle persuasion and a touch of agitation, slows No.6's progress enough to give No.240 time to enter the Town Hall.

Be seeing you.... Rover permitting.

Thursday, 28 March 2013

Thought For The Day

    As No.2 suggested in 'Free For All' "Confide and we concede." In other words give them what they want and life in the Village becomes more comfortable. No.6 might even be give a position of authority, as suggested by No.2 on the day of the Prisoner's arrival in the Village. And yet in 'Dance of the Dead,' it is plain that No.6 is going to be very stubborn about resisting the Village "You'll never win" to which No.2 replies "Then how very uncomfortable for you old chap!"
    So if No.6 pretended to confide, then he might have been given a position of authority, and thereby attempt to bring the system of the Village down from within. After all there were those in such a position to possibly help - No.12 of Administration for one!

Be seeing you

Pictorial Prisoner

   The image seen on the wall screen in the Control Room, it's not the same image as the Truth Test projected on to the screen in the Labour Exchange Manager's office seen below. So I can only imagine that the above image is set to represent No.6 sat in the chair, and the man standing, the Labour Exchange Manager. But when does the Manager put his hands on his head like that?
Be seeing you

Page 6

   Seeing as how the Prisoner is nothing more than a vicious circle, I wonder if I will remember anything from the first time, the second, third and even fourth times around? Possibly making the same mistakes along the way, and not making the most of the knowledge that I've learned, if indeed I've learned anything at all.
   Escape would be good, I mean take 'Checkmate' for example. If only I could remember what was about to happen, what went wrong the time before, who betrayed me, if I was betrayed. And why the escape failed, and then armed with such information, I would be able to correct that which went wrong. You can see that can't you, understand where I'm coming from?
    "Yes of course I can No.6" said the doctor rising out of his chair "Now you just go home and try to relax my dear fellow."
   "But doctor, you don't understand. I've been here before......"
   "What in my office?"
   "No, here in the Village!"
   "Oh, I see."
   "Do you doctor, do you? I knew you would. It's a vicious circle you see doctor, a damned vicious circle and there's no escape!"
    "Of course it is. Now go home and rest, go home and rest. And I'll see you again tomorrow."
    The doctor of Psychiatrics returned to his office and picked up a blue "L" shaped telephone "Get me No.2.........."

Be seeing you

60 second Interview With No.12 The Shopkeeper

     No.113 "You're just a snivelling little creep, aren’t you?"
    No.12 "I beg your pardon Sir?"
    "You heard me!"
    No.113 "Smile!" {click goes the camera}
    "Well there's no call to be insulting sir I'm sure."
    "You were watching No.6."
    "Was I Sir, I don't recall."
    "Then let me remind you. No.6 came in here to buy a copy of the newspaper, and then asked to listen to L'alesienne."
    "Ah, now I remember. We have six copies."
    "And No.6 listened to them all."
    "Yes Sir. He was timing them, and then he wrote something down on a piece of paper."
    "Did he?"
    "Look, who are you?"
    No.113b: "Smile" {click goes the camera}
    "Well whoever we are, we're not a pair of snivelling little creeps like you!"
    "That's twice you've accused me of that...."
    "Well you did go running to No.2 the moment No.6's back was turned, didn't you?"
    "Well I don't know about that Sir.
    "Ah, well that's where we have the better of yo"u see.
    "I'm sure I don't know what you mean gentlemen. Now if you don't mind, I've got my work to do."
    "What reporting to No.2, informing on anything out of the ordinary you mean."
    "Look, have you come in here to buy anything?"
    "Then would you get out then. I've customers to attend to."
   "No you haven't, there's only we three here!"
   "Look I have to close the shop!"
    "And go running to No.2 about my attitude no doubt."
    "Not at all. I don't do that sort of thing. Informing on others, the very idea!"
    Ting a ling ling sounds the shop bell.
    And the door to the General store was soundly locked against us.
    "No.12 picking up the receiver of the telephone on the counter: Get me No.2 quickly........"

Reporter No.113
Photographer No.113b

The Therapy Zone

The Prisoner - Success or Failure?

    Well financially the series was a flop. The production company Everyman Films, owned by Patrick McGoohan, David Tomblin, and another individual who's name eludes me for the moment, went into bankruptcy, and led the Inland Revenue a merry dance, according to rumour.
   Artistically the Prisoner was a failure at the time, the general public were not ready for such a surreal series which was ahead of its time, and even the social comment of its day went over the head of the average viewer. Yet time is a great educator and over the decades people living in many countries around the world have come to appreciate the series and has become a resounding success, perspicacious, stimulating, annoying, and yes entertaining. But the Prisoner has taken time to achieve this success, yet there are people who cannot see the point, and are still dead-set against it today. Probably because they have the same problem as others before them. They have not tried to make any sense of the Prisoner, because they can't or its too much trouble to try!
   Yet through the decades each new generation have found the Prisoner either in Video or DVD form on shelves in stores on the high street. Have bought said Video's or DVD's and have become firm fans of the series. Well if new fans had not come to the series appreciation for the Prisoner might very well die out, as the original fans of the series, those who formed Six of One: The Prisoner Appreciation Society back on January 6th 1977 are now either in their late 50's or early 60's years of age, a sobering thought for those of their kind.
   The Prisoner was never intended as after dinner fodder, and perhaps that is why it lost the race. Over the decades we have learned differently. Failure or success? Well failure can be instant. Success takes a little longer, and I'm pleased to say that appreciation for the series is still alive and kicking today.

  Joff Summerfield, on November 9th 2008 peddled his homemade replica of a Victorian Penny Farthing bicycle into Greenwich Market, south-east London, where his journey began two-and-a-half years ago, and 22,000 miles earlier.
    Mr. Summerfield, 40, visited 23 countries in four continents after setting off from 0 degrees longitude at the Greenwich Observatory. He averaged a speed of 11mph and covered up to 40 miles a day as he cycled across Europe into Turkey before riding through Australia and New Zealand. In Australia, he raced in the Penny Farthing World Championships and came second in one of the 'novice' categories.
    From China, where he cycled without the correct permits, he managed to sneak across the border into Tibet despite his bike's giant front wheel which is 1.2 metres in diameter.
  En route he took in landmarks including the Taj Mahal. The great Wall of China, Cambodia's Angkor Wat Temple complex and the Grand Canyon.
    His bike had just one fixed gear, a hard leather saddle, a small brake and solid rubber tyres with no modern technology to make peddling easier. Cycling alone with water bottles strapped to his handlebars and with no back up, he travelled light with just a change of clothes, stove, tent and sleeping bag and survived on £5 a day.
   But Joff Summerfield is not the first person the have cycled his way around the world. That honour goes to Thomas Stevens, who was British, in 1887.
   Nadia-No.8 was of course is a plant within the village, and her remit is to get close to No.6, but not to make it obvious. To feed him the idea that she knows the location of the village, that she saw a secret file on the village once, and for a very short time. hen to escape with No.6. And Nadia proved to be very good at her job, but I suspect nothing could have prepared her for her first encounter with the Village Guardian!

   She must have been briefed about the village guardian, so it was a very brave woman who went for that swim one morning, knowing full well what was about to happen. But as I say, nothing would really have prepared her for the actual encounter. Frightening and very unpleasant for her.

Be seeing you

Wednesday, 27 March 2013

Thought For The Day

    "Sir, do you play chess sir?" Now why do you think No.14 asked No.6 that? It's a question I've never asked before, because the answer is a simple one, to be able to be even a pawn on the human chessboard the chesspiece has to know how to play the game!
   In the Village at the time of a 'Prisoner' Convention, when the human chessmatch re-enactment is played twice, there is no problem for a chesspiece. All he or she has to do, is listen carefully for when his or her chesspiece is called out, and then make the move called out by one of the two players according to the noted move or moves on a card attached to the chess pole the chesspiece is holding. In other words the human chess match has been choreographed previously, the moves having been worked out in advance. And this way anyone can stand on the chessboard and make their move or moves without having a knowledge of how to play chess.
    But in the Village of 'the Prisoner,' each one of the 32 chesspieces has to know how to play chess, in oder to know how to make their move or moves. Yes each chesspiece has to listen carefully for when his or her move or moves are called out. However there are no noted chess moves on cards attached to the chess poles to indicate each move! This is why I used to think when No.14 said "You play a fine game" to No.6, he was talking about the chess match. But having said that, No.6 only makes one move on the board, and even then he has to be prompted to make it by no fewer than 4 pieces. So that cannot be right!

Be seeing you........tomorrow back on the chessboard!

Exhibition of Arts And Crafts

    "ESCAPE!"              From my Black and White period.


Caught On Camera!

   What do these two think they're looking at? The two people in the top righht-hand corner of the picture looking over the wall. They are not dressed in Village attire, so they cannot be citizens living in the Village. So they must be day visitors to Portmeirion!

Be seeing you

The Power Of The Press by our own reporter

     It has to be said that the press has been accused of manipulation from time to time, manipulation of the news we bring you on a daily basis. And that is true when it comes to the article in which No.6 Speaks His Mind. You will recall the questions put to No.6 by No.113 during the taxi ride to the Town Hall.
No.113 "How are you going to handle your campaign?"
No.6 "No comment!"
No.113 writes "Intends to fight for freedom at all costs. How about your external policy?"
No.6 "No comment."
No.113 writes "Our exports will cover the four corners of the globe. What about your internal policy?"
No.6 "No comment."
"No.113 writes "Will tighten up on village security. Who do you feel about life and death?"
No.6 "Mind your own business!"
No.113 writes "No comment."
   But of course that's not which is written in the article, a story which No.6 has not given to the press, as No.6 Speaks His Mind.
    So this is the manipulative side of the press, by writing and publishing an article which the candidate never said, by putting words in the candidates mouth in fact.
     But the press itself can be manipulated, take the accompanying photograph to this article for example.  The photographer-No.113b, was snapping away all the time through that interview with No.6, "Smile". However I have to ask the question, "Smile", whether or not there was any actual film in his, "Smile" camera. The reason for this, "Smile", is the above photograph, "Smile", "look will you get that bloody camera out of my face!"

    Because really the photograph of No.6 which accompanies the article, should have him wearing a piped blazer, as No.113b was taking the photographs at the time.  
    Yet here he is, No.6 pictured wearing civilian attire, of suit and shirt, and tie.
   So was there actual film in No.113's camera, or was he simply wasting good film? And yes, I did write the above article, by putting words in the candidates mouth, words he never once uttered to me. And I am ashamed of what I did, and I want you to know it has never happened since.

your own reporter
Photographer No.113b

The Therapy Zone

   Why Wychwood? Well basically because whoever it was in "properties" during the production of ‘The Girl Who Was Death,’ who had this sign made up, because it is a made up sign and not at all real. Witchwood has been misspelling of the name of Wychwood, of which there are plenty up and down the counties of England.
    Wychwood, is a deserted village, taken over by the girl as a "killing ground." Once it was  a thriving community, with a family Butcher - Brendan Bull. A Baker - David Dough, and a Candlestick maker by the name of Leonard Snuffit.
   It was most pleasant sitting on the roadside eating my spam sandwiches, a fruit pie, both washed down with a small bottle of beer. But now back to my investigation.
    The village of Wychwood in the county of Hertfordshire, was abandoned some years ago, after talk of a by-pass which has yet to be built, which was to go right through the heart of the village. Indeed in the building of the Blacksmiths there is a bulldozer to be used in the demolition of Wychwood. Something I fear will not prove to be a hard task, as some of the buildings are being supported by huge buttresses. Whilst others have temporary fencing around them in order to keep people out and safe from falling masonry.
   The deserted village of Wychwood actually features twice within two episodes of the Prisoner, ‘The Girl Who Was Death’ of course, but previously in ‘A B & C’ one street of Wychwood doubles for an avenue somewhere in Paris, where No.6 encounters a man of mystery, who prefers to maintain his anonymity as it is always the best disguise for really important people.
   Wychwood is quite like any other village, it even has a bell tower with a green dome. In the past when the bell has been tolled in Wychwood it is not to sound curfew, but is the death knell. The death knell was sounded when a great man of this village was dying. And that is what was supposed to have happened to Mr.X, although he is a born survivor as we are all witness to. So in Mr. X's case the sounding of the death knells is premature!

 The Prisoner
   It was once written that "The Prisoner can never be fully explained. It isn't meant to be. It is what you see in it - and you should be free to see as much as you like."
   Well just as long as what you see isn't simply made up, misinterpreted, or made to look like something else, otherwise what's the point? But if that's your bag, then who am I to tell you differently? And its quite true that the Prisoner can never be fully explained, but if you can come to an understanding of most of the Prisoner, then you are able to sit back and appreciate that which will always be inexplicable within the series, and thereby all the more interesting.
  And what about the sections of the Prisoner which we do not see, that can never be understood, or explained by anyone? I mean the sections between say the end of Arrival and the beginning of ‘The Chimes of Big Ben’ for example. What happened the next day when there was the new No.2 who took part in the Appreciation Day ceremony - how did he treat No.6 the next day? And of course the same can be said of the new No.2 of ‘Free For All,’ was she brought to the village with the remit of extracting the reason for No.6's resignation, or was she to be involved in something else, simple administration work perhaps? If it was the former, then I wouldn't wish to be in No.6's shoes the next day after ‘Free For All!’
   You see, all one has to do is use one's imagination to fill in the gaps to your own satisfaction, and then you can enlarge upon Patrick McGoohan's masterpiece that is the Prisoner.

 Mind Games
   And not playing it according to Hoyle, is probably why this particular No.2 isn't very good at them, playing mind games that is. After all he stood there watching, along with certain members of the hospitals medical staff, and he still didn't spot it....... that Professor Seltzman switched the minds of three people at the same time!
   Well who did know?..... No.6 knew that's who!

 Many Happy Returns
   That photographic evidence of the Prisoner's, I wonder if that photographic evidence was suppressed by the Colonel? Filed away in one of those grey filing cabinets in that long warehouse we see during the opening sequence of ‘the Prisoner.’

Be seeing you

Tuesday, 26 March 2013

A Favourite Scene in The Prisoner

      "Mopping up operations Number Six?"
    The scene where No.2 brings an operative with a metal detector to '6 Private' in order to make search for the Professor's tape recorder. There seems to be a rapport between No.6 and No.2. Well they have met previously in 'A B and C.' In fact I've only just noticed, but this No.2 appears not as other No.2's, he's a cross dresser!
   Most No.2's wear grey flannel trousers, deck shoes, a grey polo neck jersey, and a double or singe breated plain blazer. This No.2 dresses half and half, the grey polo neck jersey and double breasted blazer. But the blue deck shoes and same coloured trouses as won by the new No.2 in 'Arrival,' and No.6/new No.2 in 'Free For All.'

Be seeing you

Quote For The Day

    "Do you still think you can escape Number Six?"
    "I'm going to do better that that."
   "I'm going to escape and come back. Escape, come back, wipe this place off the face of the Earth and you with it!"
                               {No.2 and No.6 - The Chimes of Big Ben}

   Well No.6 was almost as good as his word in keeping two of his promises. In 'Many Happy Returns' No.6 did escape, he did come back to the Village, and it's just as well that the Gloster Metor Jet aircraft was not armed!

Be seeing you

Village Life

    "What I woudn't give for a safety pin right now!"
    "And you needn't look at me like that!"
    "Do you have a safety pin?"


What’s That Number 6 Up To?

   The following image has been taken from routine surveillance footage of No.6 peering out through the rhododendron bushes. I can't for one moment think No.6 has turned into some kind of voyeur, libertine, or heaven forbid, a peeping tom!

   But whatever he's doing, he's done it before on the morning of his arrival here in the Village, here for example.

   And it seems to be quite a habit the Prisoner is developing, because it's not once or twice.

   So what's No.6 up to? Well okay, in the first photograph No.6 is following the Rook-No.56, and pops up in the Rhododendrons during Checkmate. In the following three images from Arrival, the Prisoner is skulking in the bushes to avoid that white membranic  Village Guardian, and from being seen as a Village taxi passes by.
   Although "lurking" in and "emerging" from bushes and undergrowth is a habit Pat McGoohan developed during the episodes of his former series 'Danger Man.' At this time photographic evidence of this is unavailable, there are several episodes in which John Drake can be seen lurking in bushes and undergrowth. And then he went on to adopt that technique in scenes for 'the Prisoner.'

Be seeing you!

The Therapy Zone

    The task of the Village Guardian is three fold, to patrol the Village. To restrict citizens. To chase down escapees, to suffocate into coconsciousness or death.
   These two fellows, pictured here with No.6, are prefects as No.6 termed them. In reality they are a pair of village guardians, who have picked on No.6 because he needs to get back to his cottage in time for the Professor's lecture.
    Then strange is it not that these pair of village guardians busy themselves with No.6, rather to involve themselves in the recapture of the Professor!
    The Professor has taken it upon himself to do-a-runner along the beach. And on his way he has been able to bury his tape recorder in the sand. The helicopter is despatched to the skies, but on the ground it is the students themselves who have been sent to run down the Professor, and to manhandle him back to the village. As seen here.
   The reason for not despatching the Village guardian-Rover is understandable, because if taken too far the repercussions for the guardians possible actions, ie suffocation - the after effects of which can be very unpleasant. Or the possibly cause the death of the Professor, which would go very hard for No.2.
   So why not this pair of Village guardians pictured above? Perhaps they themselves were playing truant! In seeing that the students themselves had the situation well in hand - the Professor.
    The helicopter was despatched to oversee things from the air, but why were the students themselves sent on the trail of the Professor down on the beach? It could be that they became involved through keenness for the Professor's lectures. As they love him, they'll take anything from him. without the Professor, Speedlearn, and the General, the students are only so many citizens to be experimented upon in some other way!

    Ah, you ever wondered why The Tally Ho, the name of the village newspaper, well so have I. It's a hunting cry isn't, "Tally Ho" they cry, as huntsmen and women chase the fox through the countryside on horseback. I suppose following that thinking, No.6 must surely be the fox!
   The Tally Ho, has a sort of ring to it doesn't it, unlike The Village Guardian, mind you that could be mistaken for Rover. The Village Times would have made a good title for the newspaper, or The Daily Village, but now I think it's getting rather silly. But I can't help but wonder, even though we do simply have to accept, how they came by the name Tally Ho for the village newspaper.

Information And Observation
    The name Jackie replaced that of Johnny in the nursery rhyme "See-saw Marjory Daw Jackie shall have a new master....." This is possibly because the producers didn't want the name Johnny seeming to being used in the same context as the name John Drake.
    Questions are a burden to others, because they don't know the answer and more often than not have to repeatedly ask the same questions over, and over again. Answers a prison for oneself, because what answers you give, or say, cannot be taken back. You've said what you said, people have heard you, and that's your prison, because you cannot take back what you've just said.
    In  Not Forsake Me Oh My Darling, PR12 and ZM73 take a ride on a strange looking lift. It is actually a Paternosta lift which can be found in the GEC - Marconi building opposite the MGM/Elstree film studios at Borehamwood.
   The Minimoke was originally designed for the British Army as an all terrain vehicle. Only due to it's low and short wheel base, the Minimoke was particularlly useless as an all terrain vehicle. So it does very well on the sand at Portmeirion.
    Many fans of the Prisoner see Pop, pop, pop said by No.6 during the deliberations in the embryo room of Once Upon A Time, are somehow connected to the POP at the end ot the Alternative Chime Of Big Ben.
   Pop, pop, pop, pop, pop protect.... substitue Pop for father and you have father protect. Well No.6 had been regressed back to hs childhood.
    No.6 saw his job and the kind of work he did, as being above the law. No-one is above the law. So it seems Mr. Drake thought a great deal of himself!
   Fotheringay, is the name of Fortheringay castle, the birthplace of Richard the III, and the place of execution of Mary Queen of Scots.
Information And Observations
   The General, and the fact that they took its name to heart and filled the Generals office with all manner of Militaria from painting to statuettes. So I wonder if the General was once a War games strategist computer, which was then redeveloped by the Professor. It's the military name and connotations which make me take this line of thinking.
   Is the General supposed to be a thinking computer, as of the 1950's, and if so then the General should have responded to the question WHY? with WHY? But the General couldn't answer the question, and so blew a gasket instead. But this is not the first time we have witnessed a machine self-destructing in this way. there was STAR, a robot in the film The Black Hole. He couldn't take it when he was out gunned in a shooting competition with VINCENT, another robot but of a different class.
    I just can't figure out how the Prisoner could afford to live at 1 Buckingham Place, and such a large house for one person. I mean The Prisoner as a one time Civil Servant working for the British Secret Service would only be earning something like £50 per week, £200 per month, which is hardly enough to pay for a lease on a house in the city of Westminster.
    I happen to know who lived at No.3 Buckingham Place at the time of the Prisoner, someone related to some very important and powerful people on the world stage at the time. I got this from a very good friend of mine who has been researching the Prisoner in-depth. However I am instructed not to divulge this persons name, which is a pity for you, and a pity for me as I would have you know. However I am not one to break a confidence.
    Something’s within the Prisoner will remain inexplicable, and then there are something’s we were never meant to see, like the chess problem in the Tally Ho newspaper which No.6 carries about him when he is attempting to find his reliable men. If a Guardian he crosses off their number on that chess problem. and there's nothing wrong in that, save for the fact that No.6 has actually crossed No.12 off three times!!!!! I suppose it's simply a case of McGoohan thinking who's going to see?....... Well I did for one!

Be seeing you