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Saturday, 28 February 2015

A Favourite Scene In The Prisoner


   In ‘The Schizoid Man’ when all becomes apparent to Number 6 when he looks into the dressing table mirror, revealing what had taken place, the conditioning which he had undergone.
   But this is not the only time this trick is employed. In ‘Do Not Forsake Me Oh My Darling’ after the Prisoner/Colonel has been returned to London, all unpleasant memories having been wiped from Number 6’s mind. Regressed in fact to the morning he was to have handed in his letter of resignation. But looking into the mirror in the hallway all soon becomes clear to him, his memories of The Village suddenly returning to him!

Be seeing you

Doubles!

   What if Number 1 and Number 6 were not the alter egos of each other as suggested by Patrick McGoohan, but nothing more that mere doubles? Number 6 upon discovering that it was his double which had been the cause of all his troubles, decided to rid himself of this troublesome doppelganger. So having an instant hatred for his double, and having chased Number 1 around the table, and up the ladder, he sealed his double in the nose cone of the rocket. In this action he was merely getting rid of his double. After all he had done it before with in ‘The Schizoid Man,’ and having gotten rid of one double that would make it easier to get rid of a second.
   And having rid himself of the bane of all his troubles, did Number 6 then miss the opportunity of impersonating Number 1? He could have persuaded everyone that it had been his double Number 6 who had been launched in the rocket. In this he would effectively turn the tables on The Village’s administration system. But to what end, is anyone’s guess. Possibly then to learn all he can, before bringing The Village administration down from within. But that would pre-suppose that Number 6 could impersonate Number 1 effectively without anyone becoming suspicious of him. And in this regard we only have to look at Number 6’s impersonation of his other double, Curtis. He hardly covered himself in glory there, caught out by one little fact that Number 6 could not possibly know, and his deception was unmasked within a few minutes. So Number 6’s possible impersonation of Number 1 would have been a non-starter. Besides he was too caught up in causing as much mayhem as possible, once his double had been removed!

Be seeing you

Collectors Corner



   This item I found recently for sale on ebay, the following is the sellers description.


        SPECIAL COLLECTOR'S LIMITED EDITION 3 CD SET

The Prisoner
The PRISONER 3 CD SET complete Chappell recorded music library cues RRP £26.99
THE COMPLETE CHAPPELL RECORDED MUSIC LIBRARY CUES



   “This special collectors edition CD set is limited to 1000 copies worldwide. It is aimed at the music connoisseur within The Prisoner and other television music communities where library and other incidental music are appreciated.
   This edition is not available in any shop and could only be obtained by personal application.
   It contains the complete archive collection of incidental music from the Chappell Recorded Music Library used in the 1967 Everyman TV production The Prisoner. It includes a 56 page booklet containing an episode by episode, scene by scene listing of all the music cues (library and original soundtrack) used in the series; and extensive sleeve notes with contributions from Roger Langley, Ricky Davy and a special introduction by Eric Marvel music editor - No. 2 to the original TV series.”
   The price of this 3 CD box set £9.99
      -------------------------------------------------------------------
   This item was originally made available in January 2010. This 3 CD set could not be obtained from retail shops, only available through Six of One: The Prisoner Appreciation Society, by personal application only.
    I might have gone for the 3 CD set myself, if it wasn’t for the fact that I obtained the Chappell music library from another source two or three years earlier.


BSEENU

Double Night Time

   It may be wondered what the Supervisor means by "double night time," a phrase he uses during ‘Once Upon A time.’ And upon hearing this, all the Observers, barring the two sitting on the steel see-saw device, get out of their seats and leave the Control Room.
    In Britain during WWII there was “Double Summer Time,” which meant adding two hours to summer days instead of one. Although it may be assumed that this has nothing to do with the matter in hand.
    “Double night time,” could mean that the Observers were on twice the pay they were usually on for working the night shift. Except that once the Supervisor makes the announcement all subsidiary personnel are released early, but their time sheets will be normal.
   So why have 5 of the 7 Observers been released from the shift early? Possibly because they will not be needed, as imagine all the citizens, at least the troublesome inmates, have been put to sleep, sedated through their regular night cup of hot chocolate that night. So if one extends that for the next 7 days and nights you get double night time, the inmates kept under sedation all that time, the reason being that they will not cause any trouble while the real Number 2 is away in the Embryo Room for a week.
   As for the citizens in ‘Fall Out’ being awake, they would have been awoken on the day the Supervisor let Number 6 and the Butler out of the Embryo Room, the week being up. And it must not been forgotten, that originally ‘Once Upon A Time’ was a stand alone episode, and not linked to ‘Fall Out’ the way it is. So the inmates who had all been kept sedated for a week, would simply be allowed to wake up and go about their business. 

Be seeing you

Friday, 27 February 2015

Teabreak Teaser

   Having woken up back in his home in ‘Do Not Forsake Me Oh My Darling?’ How long after that was the Prisoner/Colonel in London.

BSEENU

Exhibition of Arts And Crafts

                  “The Lighthouse Is The Rocket!”


BcNu

Why Am I Here?

   “You know why you’re here Ninety-three.”
   “You’re in The Village.”
   “This is not The Village!”
   “Not The Village? Then what is it if it’s not The Village?”
   “The Village is Italianate, and not surrounded in every direction for hundreds and hundreds of miles by sand.”
    “You are deluded Ninety-three. Let me book you in for therapy treatment. A spell in the Therapy Zone will do wonders for your attitude.”
    “I want to go back!”
    “Go back to where?”
    “To
London.”
    “I’m afraid that’s not possible Ninety-three. There is no
London, there is only The Village, you  of all people should know that by now.”
    “Well I want to go back to The Village.”
    “But you’re in The Village.”
    “The other Village. When I tell Number two what you’ve done to me, you’ll be for it I can tell you.”
   “Who did you say?”
    “Number Two.”
    “But I am Two.”
    “You mean the new Number Two.”
    “No, just Two. There has only ever been one Two, and I am he.”
    “Look I can tell you things about The Village………………..”
    “Go on Ninety-Three, I’d be fascinated to hear your delusions, ravings or whatever they are.”
    “In The Village people turn up, people who have a certain sort of knowledge which invaluable to an enemy. When in The Village they are there to have that knowledge protected, or extracted.”
    “Ninety-three we are not concerned with sides. Sides do not matter any more. Here in The Village we only make people better.”
    “What better citizens?”
    “Yes. That’s why you were selected. You’re broken, and need putting back together again.”
    “Like Humpty Dumpty.”
    “Humpty Dumpty?”
    “Sat on a wall, Humpty-Dumpty had a great fall……..”
    “All the kings horses and all the Kings men…………….”
    “Couldn’t put Humpty together again!”
    “Well we’ll attempt to do slightly better than the Kings men and all their horses.”
    “And then I can go home?”
    “But you are home Ninety-three. You are Village.
    “Village is best for me?”
    “We should find you a new blazer.”
    “This blazer, what’s wrong with it?”
    “It’s so old Village.”
    “I like it. It reminds me of former times.”
    “One should never live in the past.”
    “The present isn’t all that wonderful.”
    “People here are happy enough. Going about their daily lives.”
    “As prisoners?”
    “As citizens of The Village.”
    “I want to leave!”
    “I see no locked doors. Leave whenever you like.”
    “Leave The Village?”
    “Yes.”
    “And go where?”
    “Back to The Village…… Village is all there is!”

    He crossed the square, crossed the street, climbed the steps and walked into the Green Dome as the front door swung open. The diminutive
Butler bowed as he entered, but not with the agility he once had. A pair of steel doors opened and he entered Number 2’s office.
    “Ah Number Six, how are we today. How’s the arthritis?” asked a portly man sat behind the curved desk.
    “What’s going on?”
    “Going on Number Six?”
    “Yes, you know what I mean.”
    “I’m sorry, I have no idea what you’re talking about. Look do sit down my dear fellow. A senior citizen of your age, you really shouldn’t get so worked up.”
    “I was there again!”
    “Where?”
    “You know, in The Village.”
    “But you’ve always been here. Apart from the odd times you’ve been away from us.”
    “That’s what I mean. I’ve been away again, in that other Village.”
    “Oh not this again Six. You’ve been having nightmares again, that’s all.”
    “During the day?”
   “Well day dreaming then.”
    “Are you feeding me drugs again without my knowing?”
    “No. You may hold yourself in some importance, but believe me Number Six, you hold no  importance to us anymore. What knowledge you possessed in no longer classified. And the reason behind your resignation, well who cares , well, besides you that is? No-one that’s who. Go back to the Old People’s Home and stay there. You know what you need Number Six?”
    “No, what do I need?”
    “A posset!”
    “A Posset! You take a large jorum filled with hot milk, a spoon full of treacle, a raw egg, and a little grated nutmeg, all stirred together. And taken down hot before you go to bed, well it’ll make a new man of you. Ask Matron there to make you a posit.”
    “You all think I’m mad! If its not one Village its another!”
    “There is only one Village Number Six, and you’re in it.”
    “Yes, right up to my neck!”

        Number Six left the Green Dome and made his way through The Village, and down onto the quayside. There was a set of steps leading down to the beach, the tide was out. Walking away along the beach in the sunshine, he had the compelling desire to turn around, raise his arm in defiance and shout “I am not a number, I am a free man.” He did turn, but he remained silent. The Village wasn’t there you see, just sand dune after sand dune for miles and miles in every direction…………………………..

Breathe in……breathe out……Village life goes on!
Be seeing you

Quote For The Day

    “What’s he up to with that clock? It’s a bomb! That’s it, it must be a bomb!”    
                                         {Number 2 - Hammer Into Anvil}

    Of course it wasn’t a bomb, but it wasn’t the first time that it was suggested that Number 6 might have a bomb. Number 2 in ‘Dance of the Dead’ told the doctor that she would warn him the moment Number 6 puts a bomb in his lovely hospital! But all it was, was a cuckoo clock, plain and simple, and just another act of Jamming on Number 6’s part. When Number 6 went to buy a notebook, and saw the display of Cuckoo clocks, not that he was interested in the actual Cuckoo clocks themselves, nor was he looking for a particular one, but it did give him an idea. It was the Shopkeeper who thought Number 6 was looking for a specific one, but was wrong about that. Number’s 6 eye was caught by a distinct box, one with a hinged lid which he could use as a trap, and which he later baited with the remnants of a ham sandwich. Do country pigeons like ham sandwiches? Mind you, I bet that pigeon would have been burned to a crisp had the Supervisor-Number 60 been able to activate and fire the beam at maximum strength. Instead of minimum strength, which merely stunned the pigeon.
Be seeing you

Thursday, 26 February 2015

Thought For The Day

    It is said that ‘the Prisoner’ is timeless. Well certainly the series has withstood the passage of time, far more than many other television series. If it were not for the use of exterior film footage, in London for example, which is the only thing which dates ‘the Prisoner.‘ Otherwise the series would be practically un-dateable, if it had been completely filmed in Portmeiron alone.
    Someone wrote to me, saying in a letter how much he enjoys watching my film ‘Village Day.’ He went on to say that the film is like ‘the Prisoner,’ timeless. It was nice of this correspondent to say so. An old friend of mine also wrote to me, he has been introducing ‘the Prisoner’ to some friends of his. And at the same time screened ‘Village Day.’ The girlfriend of one of the friends doesn’t care for ’the Prisoner,’ and yet when she sat watching ‘Village Day’ I was told how captivated she was by it. Listening intently to the dialogue, taking it all in, and is now a fan of the film. My friend wrote saying that with ‘Village Day,’ in this instance, I had out-done Patrick McGoohan. It was good of him to say that. Its now 17 years since the film was produced, on a shoestring budget. An ambitious film, sometimes when I think back, perhaps too ambitious. But there it is. I remember watching an amateur film inspired by ‘the Prisoner,’ and as far as I recall the majority of the film was shot on location at Portmeirion. When Number 2 had a meeting with someone, that meeting had to take place outside the Green Dome. I was determined that ‘Village Day’ would have an interior for Number 2’s office. Well it was half an interior actually. With a pair of automatically sliding doors, which actually opened and closed better than the doors to Number 2’s office in the series. That was thanks to no fewer than 6 operators, three for each door, who slid them open and closed quite effortlessly. I remember being quite relieved when the production was completed. Relieved and damn well exhausted! Perhaps it’s high time I got the film out again to watch it. The one disappointment I felt, was the fact that people at the time didn’t get it. No, that wasn’t the disappointment, it was the fact that hardly anyone asked me questions about the film at the time. Because there was far more to it than met the eye at the first viewing!





Be seeing you

There Some People Who Talk…..

    And so it follows there are some people who do not talk. Which means there are some people who leave The Village, and some who do not leave! Cobb talked, and can be observed to be about ready to leave The Village at the end of ‘Arrival.’ So it may be assumed that Chambers, who was also brought to The Village, and proved to be so talkative, was like Cobb, allowed to leave the Village. Number 2 of ‘The Chimes of Big Ben’ had originally been brought to The Village as a prisoner. He said himself in ‘Fall Out’ that what was so deplorable, was the fact that he resisted for so short a time. Poor old Roland Walter Dutton, he didn’t resist, he told them everything he knew. The only trouble in Dutton’s case was that the doctor didn’t believe him! It may be supposed, because of the doctors experiments that Roland Walter Dutton went and gone!
    I wonder when Number 2 was given that number, when he was given that position? Before he was brought back to The Village, or before, while back in
London? And who decided that? It’s all very well to promote someone already living in The Village, someone in a position of authority. But to bring someone in from the outside, how does that actually work? Certainly Number 2 would have to be fully briefed about The Village, about Number 6. But then would they? Like Number 2 of ‘The Chimes of Big Ben,’ he has had prior first hand knowledge and experience of The Village, but as a prisoner! But then not on the actual working, and manipulation of such as The Village! However as it turned out, Number 2 turned out to be an excellent administrator, and was brought back, but not once but twice, and the second time he was not at all happy about. It could be imagined that once having woken up amongst the people in The Village would have been bad enough, but to be brought back, not as a prisoner but as a warder! It makes one wonder how it was decided that this man should become a Number 2? Perhaps because he obviously worked in the Foreign Office, as in the past it has been his lot, to wield a not inconsiderable power. Nay he had the ear of statesmen, Kings and Princes of many lands. Governments had been swayed, policies defined and revolutions nipped in the bud from a word from him in the right place and at a propitious time.  So it maybe supposed that that was good enough to attain the position of Number 2, second only to one, if one discounts 2 as also being second to three as well.
    So, are all the other Number 2’s former citizens recruited to the Village and promoted from within? Or were they like Number 2 of COBB and OUAT, brought to The Village as Prisoners, who were then turned to the dark side to coin a phrase? It might be argued that the first Number 2 was, and perhaps still is after his term of office in The Village, a Colonel in British Intelligence. One Colonel Ross. Harry Palmer could tell you a great deal about Ross. But then that may well be stretching a point too far, fictionally speaking. Mixing ‘the Prisoner’ with the ‘The Ipcress file,’ ‘Funeral In Berlin,’ and The Billion Dollar Brain.’ The trouble is, Guy Doleman plays the two roles of Colonel Ross and Number 2 so alike, that they could be one and the same character. Perhaps that’s where all the Number 2’s came from, either recruited or abducted from within the British Civil Service! Perhaps not put to immediate use in The Village, but released back into society to be retained as a “sleeper.” Ready to be recalled at a propitious time, to be of service to The Village, either as an external agent, or within The Village itself. That way The Village administration could have agents secreted all over the World.
    But Number 6 was not for talking, nor would he allow himself to be coerced into becoming one of “them” either. But even so, and in the end, he was like Number 2, he became a “lifer” because he knew too much, too much about ‘The Village!


Be seeing you

Village Life!


    “It’s going to be a long night.”
    “We’ve drawn the short straw again!”
    “I couldn’t half do with a cuppa char!”
    “Well it was you who forgot to bring the flask!”
    “I was busy making the sandwiches wasn’t I.”
    “I don’t know, were you?”
    “Yeah I was.”
    “What’s in the sandwiches?”
    “Four Cheese and pickle, and four cheese and tomato.”
    “Any crisps?”
    “One packet of plain crisps, the one with the little blue bag of salt inside.”
    “Oh I like that, you can put just as much salt on the crisps as you want.”
    “Yeah, and then you shake the bag to get the crisps evenly covered in salt.”
    “Oh good, think I’ll have a cheese and pickle sandwich, and a packet of crisps.”
    “You can’t.”
    “And why not?
    “I left them back in the canteen with the flask of tea!”
    “You know what?”
    “No names are supposed to be used here!”
    “What are you going on about?”
    “You asked me if I know Watt.”
    “No I didn’t, I said do you know what?”
    “See, you did it again!”
    “Did what?”
    “Asked me if I know Watt.”
    “Do you know something?”
    “Know what?”
    “You’re next to an idiot!”
    “How do you do!”
    “No don’t be like that!”
    “All night stuck up on this damned
Bell Tower.”
    “Hope it doesn’t rain.”
    “At least the wind’s not blowing!”
    “Yeah it’s not so bad, nothing ever happens.”
    “Shine the searchlight over there.”
    “Why, you seen something?”
    “Yeah, two girls moonlight bathing.”
    “Blimey! I don’t fancy yours much!”
    “That’s Hercules you idiot. You’re pointing the searchlight in the wrong direction!”


Be seeing you

You’re Going In?

    Well it’s late, there’s a lot to do, and Number 2 has to make her report. I wonder why she could not do that from her office, make her report to Number 1? All she had to do was pick up a telephone, doesn’t matter if its red, yellow, turquoise, or pink. No, Number 2 didn’t have a pink telephone, that was the bureaucrat to whom the Prisoner handed in his resignation. In any case Number 2 appeared to be speaking to Number 1 on the telephone early into the episode of ‘Dance of the Dead.’ So who was she going to report to in that very elaborately furnished room via a teleprinter? As far as that room goes, Number 2 had this to say to Number 6.
    “They can’t see you. They’ve never seen in this room and they never will.”
    So why shouldn’t the ordinary citizens see into that room?  And what about that elaborately furnished room within the depths of the Town Hall? We know that despite the Green Dome being described as Number 2’s residence, Number 2 doesn’t actually live there. It is but an office. Might not that room in the Town Hall in which Number 6 discovered the teleprinter, be used by each subsequent Number 2 who is in office at the time? Perhaps refurnished and decorated for each one. After all if the Green Dome isn’t Number 2’s actual residence, he or she had to have somewhere to live. Perhaps that’s the reason why the ordinary residents will never see into that room. They don’t want them to see how Number 2 lives. They might feel sorry for him or her, having to live there underground, instead of in residence in the Green Dome! Yet having said that, the ordinary citizen wouldn’t have been afforded the possibility of seeing into that elaborately furnished room, if the Ball had been held in the Recreation Hall instead of the Town Hall!


Be seeing you

Tuesday, 24 February 2015

In Too Much of A Hurry!

    “You’re in too much of a hurry my friend” the doctor told the Supervisor, when Number 8 had failed to find Number 6. That was the flaw with that reaction transmitter in the locket about Number 8’s neck. It didn’t work when she was out of sight of Number 6!
   The Supervisor was more impatient than in a hurry. The doctor was laid back and confident about the new device and method being tested against Number 6. Another laid back character is Number 2. He works quietly as a Chief Administrator, which is more than can be said for a number of his predecessors. Yet this Number 2 doesn’t exactly get his hands dirty. He leaves all the working details of this latest experiment with both the doctor and the Supervisor.
   If there are times when anyone can be accused of being in too much of a hurry, its Number 1, perhaps he was running out of time. Certainly by the penultimate episode he was, and by the time of ‘Fall Out’ he had to throw himself into the mix in order to try and bring things to a satisfactory conclusion. Knowing Number 6, Number 1 really should have known better!

Be seeing you

Exhibition of Arts And Crafts

                                        No Way Out!”


BcNu

The Prisoner Under the spotlight

    The good thing about ‘Danger Man’ was the quality of both its scripts and scriptwriters, the story lines and production quality. But all of that is difficult to maintain if the quality of the story lines begins to deteriorate, becoming repetitive, which it in fact was the case towards the end, and that is probably why Patrick McGoohan resigned! Feeling that the story quality was no longer as it had once been. Well the quality had been maintained over three seasons and some 86 episodes, both 25 and 50 minutes in length. And after such a span of episodes, a deterioration in script material was inevitable sooner or later.
    And so it turned out with ‘the Prisoner.’ 17 episodes which began, with the majority filmed as though each individual episode was a film, so much went into the first 7 or 8 episodes. With strong scripts, but which began to suffer and tail off with some of the latter episodes, with the likes of ‘It’s Your Funeral’ ‘A Change of Mind,’ ‘Do Not Forsake Me Oh My Darling,’ and ‘The Girl Who Was Death,’ itself an unused ‘Danger Man’ script. Ideas had dried up, so the proposed figure of 26 episodes by Lew Grade was completely unobtainable!
   Yet there were a couple of scripts put forward which had been rejected by Patrick McGoohan, and so remained unused. One being ‘The Outsider’ written by Moris Farhi. And ‘Don't Get Yourself Killed’ written by Gerald Kelsey, neither of which were thought quite good enough to make it as episodes of ‘the Prisoner.’ Yet having read the two scripts, it is clear that both have a superior quality to ‘Do Not Forsake Me Oh My Darling’ written by Vincent Tilsley, which was later so badly messed about with by David Tomblin, and further more by Patrick McGoohan. So much so, that in Vincent Tilsley’s mind, they had made a bad script into an incomprehensible bad script, or words to that effect. Which is a pity, when there were two other scripts to choose from.
    There were also two synopses written for two further episodes both written by Eric Mival {music editor on ‘the Prisoner} ‘Ticket To Eternity’ and ‘Friend Or Foe?’
   Ticket To Eternity involved religion, and Number 6 being tricked into thinking he's travelled in time with Number 2, but it proved ultimately too far fetched.
    ‘Friend Or Foe’ featured the adventures of "a black man called Mike "X", a passionate militant, it's in astonishingly poor taste considering that Malcom X  had been assassinated just two years earlier. The storyline actually involves Mike "X" faking his death along with Number 6. In the event it turned out that Mike X really did die, and the man trying to get secrets out of Number 6 when they've both escaped, is a Villager. Number 6 realises he's been tricked by noticing some white skin under "Mike's" rubber mask. As bizarre as such escapades seem today, one notable element is that the escapees were able to get on the main road to London from The Village, which could indicate that the concept behind ‘Fall Out’ may have been planned earlier than expected.
   Also to actually ask members of the production crew to put forward their own synopsis and ideas for storylines, demonstrated the level of desperation which was creeping into the production at that stage

Be seeing you

Monday, 23 February 2015

Make Your own Lava Lamp!



Materials
    A tall glass or plastic bottle, vegetable oil, food colouring, water, Alka-Seltza or fizzy vitamin tablet.

Method
    Fill the glass or bottle about a third full of water, then top it up with vegetable oil. Add a few drops of food colouring and allow to mix with the water. Break the Alka-Seltzer or vitamin tablet into quarters and drop a piece into the glass or bottle and watch what happens. Add more pieces of tablet if you want more bubbles.

   These instructions found in The Times newspaper Saturday February 21st.

BCNU

Number 1

    Number 1 is “self,” the ego or id. Psyche, soul, or self hood or personality.
    Number 1 is myself, we, ourselves, yourself, himself, herself, themselves, or us.
   In ‘Free For All,’ according to Number 2, that if Number 6 wins the election he’s the boss. However Number 6 sees Number 1 as the boss, being the power behind The Village, the highest ranking in the numbered hierarchy. And yet in a deck of cards the number 1 is the ace, and the ace can be high or low in ranking. Top suit card the one minute, bottom of the deck the next! Perhaps there are times when Number 1 isn’t as important as “self” makes one out to be!

Be seeing you

Thought For The Day

    Once the decision had been made about “Degree Absolute,” which would take Number 2 away from the day to day working of The Village. But someone had to be in charge, and so it was that Number 2 seemingly promoting the Supervisor-Number 26, by effectively handing The Village over to the Supervisor for one week. So did that make the Supervisor a new Number 2?
   But then after that 7 day period, it befell upon the Supervisor to go to the Embryo Room and supervise the release of the time lock  of the door. He found Number 6 and the Butler, with Number 2 lying on the floor in the cage. “What do you desire?” the Supervisor asked. Not “You can release me from The Village.” But Number 6 decided it was time for him to confront Number 1! “I’ll take you” said the Supervisor.
   So who was in charge of The Village while the Supervisor was taking Number 6 to meet Number 1? Perhaps the Supervisor handed the day to day running of The Village over to someone else while he was away from the Control Room. And yet on the other hand, another former Number 2 had been brought back to The Village to take up the role of President {Judge} in order to oversee the three trials that would take place during ‘Fall Out.’ But when was that decided? After all everything must have been set up in that cavern long before Number 6 asked for Number 1. Or are we to assume that what we see in the cavern is a permanent fixture? Regarding the red 1 rocket it may be assumed to be so. But the President {Judge}, surely he wasn’t a permanent fixture in that cavern? If he was, what would his purpose be there? It is possible that a former Number 2 had been brought back to administer the day to day running of The Village. But who suddenly finds himself in the role of Judge, presiding over three trials instead! After all it is the Judge who gives the order from the cavern to evacuate The Village, not someone in the Green Dome, as he as Number 2 is not there!
   And the Assembly of delegates, each one representing various aspects of society, they like the Judge, also seem out of place in that cavern. It may be supposed that they would appear more at home somewhere else, such as in the domed Council Chamber of the Town Hall. In fact the three trials could have been better held there instead of in that cavern. Like the trial against the Prisoner during the ‘Dance of the Dead.’ But then what price the meeting between Number 6 and Number 1? After Number 6 had attempted to say the things that needed to be said, he could then have been taken down into the cavern to meet Number 1 in the rocket, to where Numbers 48 and 2 had been taken. But perhaps that would have all been an over complication, far better to have everything, and everyone handy in the cavern. And yet, a cavern might be described as a domed chamber.

Be seeing you

What's That No.6 Up To?


    At the age of fifteen top of his class in woodwork! So what’s this latest woodworking project Number 6 has been working on? One observer had the idea that Number 6 might have developed some new kind of Peeping-Tom device, but this was dismissed when the Supervisor suggested that it might be some sort of measuring device, that he might he be measuring distance, but between The Village and how far away? Number 6 was also observed to make notes of something on a piece of paper.
   At some point the wooden contraption was found to have been dumped in the woods. The technical department took the pieces back to a laboratory, and put it all back together, revealing that it was in fact a Triquetrum. An early Greek astrological measuring device used by Claudius Ptolemy AD 90 – 168. Not a hundred percent accurate, but not too bad either. Who else could have made such a device in The Village, let alone have knowledge of the Triquetrum in the first place! It could only be Number 6. And it would appear there is no end to his knowledge and skills!

BCNU

Sunday, 22 February 2015

You’re Not Going To Leave That There!



   Someone will have the job of clearing all that up before the citizens wake up! On February 22nd 1967 Number 6 set sail from The Village aboard his sea-going raft. It had to be on the 22nd because according to his log he spent 25 days at sea, to eventually arrive home in London on March 18th, the next day being his birthday as he told Mrs. Butterworth.
   It would be a voyage of discovery that would require all his survival instincts and skills. He found out that the house he once called home is no longer his, nor the car that he built with his own hands. He seemed to take that very well. He went running back to his ex-colleagues, and found the Colonel willing to hear his report on The Village. And yet was not wholly welcomed, Thorpe being the sceptic about his ex-colleague. But Number 6 is a restless character, and one might have thought he’d had quite enough. But no, he could not rest until he found The Village again. However having done so, if he gets another chance to put to sea in another escape attempt, at least he’ll know where he’s sailing from!

Be seeing you

Exhibition of Arts And Crafts

                           “Hope Dashed Away!”

                  “That would have been the cruellest trick of all!”
BcNu

The Prisoner Comment

    With Producer and Director David Tomblin on ‘The Girl Who Was Death.’      
    “Yes. That was an idea that I sketched out some long time ago before for Danger Man. There was a period where we weren't doing very much, so out of boredom I wrote this outline. Then, when we were searching for more ideas for the Prisoner, I got it out and had a look at it, and thought; "Well, we could use it for the Prisoner." It was out of context, in a way, but I thought it could be a lot of fun. And that's what I was meaning earlier - you could put stories into the Prisoner and make them work for the series.”

Be seeing you

Happy Landings!

    Replace Mister X in the Control Room of the rocket in the lighthouse, tied up in that chair with rope climbing rope that would hold an elephant, with Number 1 sealed in the nose cone of the red one rocket and you have roughly the same scenario. The interior of the rockets being the one and the same. The Girl Who Was Death asked Mister X to think of her when he hits town. Who would Number 1 be thinking of, once the rocket re-entered the Earth’s atmosphere to eventually impact with the ground, or splash into the sea? With the control set at “low orbit” it wouldn’t take long before that orbit deteriorated. Perhaps the red 1 rocket, like Professor Schnipp’s rocket was destined for London, taking Number 48, 2 and the former Number 6 home. But as it was, Mister X managed to escape the bonds that secured him in that chair, unlike Number 1. He was sealed in the nose cone of the rocket and there would be no escape from his fate. Unless the hatch with a handle on the one side, had a wheel on the other, by which to release the hatch. But if it’s anything like the hatch in Professor Schnipp’s rocket…………it didn’t!

Be seeing You

Saturday, 21 February 2015

Village Life!


    “You alright mate?”
    “What’s it to you?”
    “Well you tried to go in.”
    “What of it? Why shouldn’t I go in?”
    “Well they’re fussy about who they let in.”
    “Who are they?”
    “You’re not wearing a convention tag, they won’t let you in without one you know. Members only apparently.”
    “No I didn’t know. The first time I decide to show up and they won’t let me in!”
    “Why, who are you? Say, you’re not that bloke Dave Stimpson are you?”
    “Why, whose he?”
    “Oh he was very well known in his time, famous in convention circles for looking like Patrick McGoohan he was.”
    “Yes, that’s me!”
    “Oh well Dave, you should have said, they might let you in!”

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Favourite Scene In The Prisoner


   Having discovered that he’s been tricked, that he’s still in The Village Number Six faces his agent provocateurs, and salutes them “Be seeing you,” then he returns to his cottage. There is an announcement made over the public address system. “Good evening citizens, your local Council wishes to announce an exciting competition........the subject this time, Seascapes.” It always seems to me, whenever I watch that scene, that the announcement is quite deliberate, almost as though the announcer is rubbing salt into Number Six's wound!

Be seeing you

Bureau of Visual Records

    It’s not every Number 2 we see on the screen who gets to speak with Number 1. In fact only 6 out of the 16 Number 2’s are observed speaking to Number 1. Amongst those 6, Number 1 appears to have little faith in 3 of them. With another, 1 is just making sure the tissue isn’t damaged. Another appears to be more of a social telephone call. And last but not least, 1 has to put up with a good deal of back chat from Number 2, who has taken against having been brought back to The Village! But on the whole Number 2 appears to cope very nicely without having to speak with Number 1, on screen, at least that way Number 2 isn’t put under any undue pressure. Unlike two or three that could be mentioned!

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A Change of Mind

    A Change of Mind’ is unfortunately one of the poorest episodes of the series, and has been described as being one of the “filler” episodes along with ‘It’s Your Funeral,’ and others. The episode employs an overwhelming number of studio backdrops for The Village exteriors, as well as extensive use of film stock footage. Apart from when Number 2 is being chased by the maddened crowd back to the Green Dome. A scene in which the stand-in for Number 2 {John Sharp} is wholly unconvincing, with his head of hair, and lighter build! As is Number 6 in the woods in the very first scene. Little is done via camera work to hide the fact that it’s not Patrick McGoohan using that gymnastic apparatus, but a stunt double who doesn’t even appear to be his stunt double Frank Maher.
    It is wondered where this Number 2 originates from, as Chairman of The Village he enjoys a number of quotations, after the style of Mao Tse Tung. Mao was the son of an impoverished peasant, and worked on his father’s farm, who eventually became Chairman of China, and used many quotations in his speeches. And this is an interesting parallel, because it seems that this Number 2 has a blunt, honest, and no nonsense manner. One of his metaphors “He who ploughs a straight furrow needs hoe for nothing” has a decidedly farming quality about it, and all in all it might be suggested that this Village Chairman originates from Peasant stock just as Chairman Mao. Mao was credited with the name of the Butcher of Beijing, after wiping out the astonishing number of 75 million of his own people. This may well give cause for Number 6 using the satirical phrase “‘The butcher with the sharpest knife has the warmest heart,” whilst on the balcony of the Gloriette. However Number 2 has a “sonic knife” at his disposal, which the doctor Number 86 uses to dislocate the aggressive frontal lobes, and that could also give cause for Number 6’s use of the phrase.
    The inspiration for this episode is the 1959 thriller ‘The Manchurian Candidate,’ about an American Platoon being captured during the Korean War, then taken to Manchuria in Communist China. Members of that platoon are then put through brainwashing techniques. In The Village there is a purge being undertaken against unmutuals, and this can be paralleled with the American Communist witch hunts of the early 1950’s.
   For one of the poorest produced episode of the entire series of ‘the Prisoner,’ it contains a good deal of underlying symbolism with both fact and fiction.

Be seeing you

Friday, 20 February 2015

Teabreak Teaser

    In ‘Hammer Into Anvil,’ to whom is Number 6 heliographing?
 
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Exhibition of Arts And Crafts

                                   “ESCAPE!”


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Bureau of Visual Records

    Now who did we think Number 6 would find behind that screen? Bet he thought, or rather he might have expected Number 1. If he did, he was to be disappointed, and so too the viewer if that’s who they thought Number 6 would discover. But it wasn’t Number 1, but the machine.
   Wonder what that teletype was printing? It must have been printing something, as there is printed text on the paper. But of course it’s another of those things about ‘the Prisoner’ series that shall forever remain a mystery. Like the unanswered question, as to why Number 2 should give her report, and received her instructions via a teleprinter, when she was seen and heard, speaking to her immediate superior who we presume is Number 1 at an early stage in the episode. The teleprinter suggests contact with a source somewhere in the outside World.




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Quote For The Day

      “Who are you?”
     “The new Number Two?”
    “Who is Number One?”
    “You are Number Six.”
                        {The Prisoner and Number 2 - the opening sequence}

    So that’s that all tidied up nicely, what’s more we know whose who, it couldn’t be simpler. But of course it wasn’t Number 2 who gave the Prisoner his number of identity. One would have thought it should have been Number 2, a man in his position. It was the Supervisor who gave the Prisoner his number 6. He did that when he made that announcement to all units and all posts, when Number 6 was heading toward the Outer Zone in the Mini-Moke. Makes one wonder how the Supervisor knew what Number this new arrival was to have, when all the time he’s mostly in his domain of the Control Room. Number 2 may very well have alerted the Supervisor to the Prisoner’s number. But if so, that is one of those numerous moments in ‘the Prisoner’ to which we as the viewer are not privy. So we simply have to accept that it was the Supervisor who gave the Prisoner’s number of 6. Then again the Prisoner didn’t know that, he was too busy trying to escape. The Prisoner wasn’t actually given his number until the next day, after he had been discharged from the hospital. It was in fact the medical orderly who actually presented the Prisoner with his number 6, via his card of identity, and not the Supervisor after all!

Be seeing you

Thursday, 19 February 2015

CITIZEN 22


    I have written it before, so I shall write it again. Number 22, pictured here with Number 2, bears an uncanny resemblance to his predecessor Number 14, who was also an assistant to Number 2, in 'Hammer Into Anvil.' Except 14 was a more capable assistant, well he would have been had Number 2 allowed him to be so. It may be wondered what Number 22 was doing all the time Number 2 was away from The Village on leave? Perhaps he was simply absorbed back into Administration until Number 2 returned. But even then what did 22 do to actually assist Number 2? Nothing much may well be the conclusion drawn. He may not have agreed with Plan Division Q, but he was powerless to help Number 2. And so the question is, what was he doing there in the first place? Perhaps simply to act as a sounding board from Number 2. He’s not even anywhere to be seen during the Appreciation Day ceremony. He could have acted as an ally for Number 6, but he didn’t. Perhaps he simply lacked the courage and moral fibre to do the right thing.
   Number 22 may have the outward appearance of the previous Number 14, but there the resemblance ends. Because his character is opposite to that of Number 14. Then again 22 may have learned what eventually happened to 14, and didn’t want to stick his neck out for anyone.

Be seeing you

Poor Old Chap!


  What must it have been like to have gone through all that effort, only to end up back where he started! It’s rather like a ride in a Village taxi, its alright, just as long as you end up back where you started. The local service you see.
   This must have been like a new arrival for the Prisoner. As though the slate has been wiped clean, and giving Number 6 a fresh start so to speak. Thinking about it, had there been a second series of ‘the Prisoner’ they could have done worse than to use ‘Many Happy Returns’ as the first episode of that second series. Number 6 perhaps having been turned to work for The Village, having beaten Number 2 in 'Once Upon A Time' he being the better man, and subsequently  released at the end of the last episode of the first series, only to be brought back at the outset of the second. Brought back as the new Number 2, warder instead of Prisoner. That would have presented him with a new challenge. And who better, after all he is a good man. He’s been put to the test, in more ways than one, and he survived. The ideal man to know how to deal with the next stubborn Number 6 to come along! No, better not give him the number 6, make him Number 42. No! People will add 4 and 2 together and make 6! Make the Prisoner 7, The Village has never had a 7 before. And if 7 ever has an opposite, a double, he can be 14. Perhaps that’s a bit too predictable. The trouble is Number 6 has a certain ring to it that its difficult to find with any other number. I wonder if that’s why they used Number 6 in the second series produced in 2009? Well yes it isn’t a second series direct to the first, a reinterpretation, a reinvention of the first series. And yet they still used the number 6 for the Prisoner, even when dealing with a completely different character to that of the first. They could, and perhaps should, have used any number. It maybe supposed that no matter what, in a reinterpretation, and in fan fiction, the Prisoner will always be Number 6!


Be seeing you

Caught On Camera!


    That’s not John Drake in the background is it? No, not the cricketer from ‘The Girl Who was Death,’ the British secret agent. Who, having infiltrated The Village, as he once did Colony Three, is there to help Number 6 escape!

Be seeing you

Thought For The Day

    It's always one isn’t it, always one and never two! One of these days……..If you don’t leave me alone, one of these days I’ll……… if we’re not very careful, one of these days……. See always one and never two! Or there’s six of one, half dozen of the other, which is ridiculous, seeing as both are the same. Six of one, in the case of the ‘Prisoner’ six is one. And half a dozen, well that’s still six isn’t it. Unless its to do with ‘The Schizoid Man’ and then its Curtis.
    Perhaps the best that can be said of 2, is that 2 is second only to 1. Six is pretty high up in the numbers stakes, if we take it that 1 is the boss. But if that is the case, why is 6 rated so highly when he refuses to wear, observe, or respond to his number? More than that, he refuses to settle down. He’s rebellious, always keen to poke his nose in where it has no concern, and continually causes all kinds of trouble and mischief. Or is that all part of the tests set against Number 6? Nothing matters, not even failure, just as long as the ultimate goal is achieved. In that Number 6 is finally turned to The Village, and made ready to take up his position as the permanent Number 2!

Be seeing you

Tuesday, 17 February 2015

Who’s That On The Telephono?



    “I know your voice!”
    “You should do, I was speaking to you earlier today!”

    “Well what do you want?”
    “Number One.”
    “I’m afraid you have the wrong number.”
    “That isn’t Number One?”
    “Why did you think Number One would be here?”
    “I’m on red.”
    “So?”
    “Well it’s the hot-line to Number One. I picked it up and found myself speaking to you! Are you sure you’re not Number One!”
    “I’m Number 6, always have been, except when I’ve been Number Twelve!”
    “Well being in two minds can only eventually lead to a change of mind!”
    “These days I like to mind my own business!”
    “It’s good to know you’re living in harmony now.”
    “I thought I was in The Village?”
    “Harmony is a state of mind.”
    “And The Village a place on the map!”
    “The mind makes its own places. You are where you think you are.”
    “Well in that case, I’m in
Southend-on-Sea, and have a date with the girl who is death!”

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Exhibition of Arts And Crafts

         “There Is More Harm In The Village….”

                    “Watch out, there’s a Peeping-Tom about!”
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