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Thursday, 25 May 2017

THEPRIS6NER

     It might be imagined that I have given up on THEPRIS6NER, but nothing could be further from the truth. It’s true enough that I’ve not put finger to keyboard to write about the second series, but that’s simply on the grounds that there is less material to work with than there is with the first series, not even 50 minutes per episode! And yet with THEPRIS6NER less is more, more Village!
    2017 is the 7th anniversary of the British screening of the series, 8 years since its American premier event in New York in 2009. And to celebrate, this April my wife and I screened the series as we do each year. And still today at the end of each episode I’m left wanting More Village, and at the end I want to sit watching it all over again. So I am as much a devoted fan of THEPRIS6NER as I was when I first watched the series back in 2010. In fact I became a fan through watching the ITV previews of the series. Somehow it was just as I imagined it would be. Not filmed in Portmeirion? So what, I personally was prepared for that! No Patrick McGoohan, well there might have been had Ian McKellen not been cast in the role of Two. Because that’s the role Patrick McGoohan wanted. Then what might the critics of the series have had to say? But there is 93, a representation of the former Number 6 played by John White. Or is he the former 93 from ‘A Change of Mind?’ No, Number 6 surely, seeing as he’s the only one who wears that dark jacket with off-white piping like Number 6 in the first series. What it would be for Number 6 to one night go to sleep in his cottage, only to wake up in a strange apartment, although rather reminiscent of his cottage in the original Village, but in a completely unknown and alien Village and find he’s now 93. Its enough to turn a sane man to drink! But why is he there? Certainly not for Two to simply go on asking the question why did he resign? People, in their subconscious are brought to The Village to be made better. Number 6 isn’t mad, well not according to his record. He does appear to suffer from an anguish pattern, that was the doctor-Number 14’s diagnosis in ‘A B And C.’ But 43 years in The Village couldn’t have helped!!!! Certainly there were no alcohol in the original Village, unlike The Village of the second series in which 93 is described as the town drunk, and in one scene 11-12 is seen to be quietly getting drunk in the ‘Go-Inside’ bar. 93 dies in a cave, and thereby escaping The Village, because death is the only escape, and that is true of both Villages. So 93, an old man, a representation of Number 6 died in a cave somewhere out in the desert. He escaped, and yet he’s still a prisoner in the original Village. I’d love to be a fly on the wall when Number 6 went to the Green Dome to confront Number 2 about this other place, this other Village. But I suppose that would all depend on whether or not Number 6 had memory of the other Village! And I know, perhaps I shouldn’t be mixing the two series, that’s what the purist fan would say. But perhaps I’m no longer the purist fan of ‘the Prisoner’ I once was.

    “Tell me now, who am I?”
    “You’re Number 6.”
    “I thought you were Number Six.”
    “I’m just Six.”
    “We can’t have two Number 6’s!”
    “Why not?”
    “It says Ninety-three on my jacket.”
    “You represent the former Number 6.”
    “Really.”
    “Well no-one else in The Village wears a jacket like that, so you must be.”
    “I’m unique!”
    “So unique that you are the only citizen of The Village to be brought here from The Village!”
    “The Village being the “other place.”
    “I suppose so.”
    “Like that woman, one of the newcomers, she just got off the bus in The Village, but said she got on the bus in The Village. But this is The Village, she and her children had just arrived!”
    “That’s because there is only The Village.”
    “You are not from here.”
      “I don’t even know how I got to this place.”
    “You are a bloody miracle!”

Breath in Breath out more Village
Be seeing you

Caught On Camera!


   People quietly going about their daily lives, no fuss, no bother, in neither trouble nor strife. One could say they were all living in Harmony!

Be seeing you

Village Life!


    “Haven’t you finished painting that wall yet?”
    “No sir.”
    “Well what have you been doing all morning?”
    “I’ve been busy.”
    No.53 “Not busy painting this wall obviously!”
    “Who’s your funny friend?”
    “How many tea breaks have you had this morning?”
    “Tea breaks, that’s a laugh. I’m working to my limit here you know!”
    “Doesn’t look like it.”
    “Twice now I’ve been asked if I painted this wall, and twice I’ve had to paint it again because it’s not been satisfactory.”
    “How difficult can it be to paint a wall?”
    “You tell me mate!”
    “Well you’re not painting the Sistine Chapel!”
    “You’d think it was, the amount of fuss that’s been made over it!”
    “Well don’t leave that ladder lying there, remember health and safety.”
    “Why don’t you go and get……”
    “Yes?”
    “……….. me a cup of tea, milk and two sugars and leave me to finish this wall!”
    “Well we’ll be seeing you Forty-two.”
    “Not if I see you first you won’t!”

Be seeing you

Tuesday, 23 May 2017

Caught On Camera!


   Previously two instances have been observed in the early stages of ‘The Chimes of Big Ben’ when Number 6 appears to be in two places at the same time. First he’s seen standing on the balcony of the Green Dome, when Number 6 is still in bed, and on the second occasion Number 6 is seen standing on top of the stone Bandstand just before he leaves the Green Dome. However there is a third occasion, when in an aerial view of the central area of The Village Number 6 can be seen running along the road, moments before Number 6 is seen returning to his cottage!
   Is this a case of a 6 impersonator in The Village? Or is it Curtis at large as he begins to live his role as Number 6? Or perhaps Number 1 is enjoying the freedom of The Village while Number 6 is otherwise engaged?!

Be seeing you

Exhibition of Arts And Crafts

                     “Portrait of The Colonel”
BCNU

The Therapy Zone

    I wonder how Number 1 feels with so many Number 2’s who fail in their tasks? Is he frustrated by it, or is he elated to see Number 6 doing so well? If we are to take it literally that Number 1 and Number 6 are one and the same person, it looks like Number 1 wants Number 6 to suffer for acting the way he had, for resigning for peace of mind, for betraying Number 1’s beliefs. So Number 2 has to put Number 6 through a series of ordeals, as Number 1 wants Number 6 tested to his limit. There might also be an element of punishment involved, but only up to a point. Number 6 mustn’t be broken, they do not want to end up with a man of fragments. Number 6 must be taught the error of his ways.
    The trouble with it is that until ‘Fall Out’ we’re not supposed to know who Number 1 is. If its not Number 6’s other self, then it’s someone else. That someone else would want to know the reason why Number 6 resigned, presumably so that he could pass the answer onto someone back in
London. On the other hand, if Number 1 and Number 6 are one and the same, there can be no question as to the resignation. Number 1 should know why Number 6 resigned. Number 1 may well be punishing Number 6 for his betrayal of his own beliefs, and so making him suffer.
   Does Number 6 feel guilty for that resignation? He probably didn’t take the decision to resign lightly, and agonized over it afterwards. Number 6 wanting peace of mind, how dare he? Number 1 wouldn’t put up with that! Number 1 has power, and position, and Number 6’s resignation is a danger that could take all that power and position away! Number 6 is a danger to The Village!
   We know that Number 1 is Number 6, Number 1 must know he’s Number 6. But the thing is Number 6 doesn’t seem to know he’s Number 1! It is said that Number 6 is told he’s Number 1 during the opening sequence, but that all depends on where one places the emphasis. Otherwise Number 2 is simply telling the Prisoner he’s Number 6.
  

Be seeing you

Sunday, 21 May 2017

Bureau of Visual Records


    Number 6 is, as far as we know, the only citizen in The Village to concern himself about Number1, perhaps unlike Number 2 he’s not an optimist!
   “I am definitely an optimist” Number 2 tells Number 6, “That’s why it doesn’t matter who Number One is. It doesn’t matter which side runs The Village.”
   These are two fundamental questions to Number 6. But the two men do have something in common, they both know too much, that they are both lifers. Number 6 is obviously staying, while Number 2 is allowed to leave The Village although the one is just as much a prisoner as the other. Because there is more than one way of being a life prisoner of The Village beyond The Village itself. In this Number 2 is not alone, there is also the Colonel and Fotheringay to name but two, as well as Cobb in ‘Arrival.’

Be seeing you

Thought For The Day

    In having changed the minds of two people through mind transference, namely Number 6 and the Colonel in ‘Do Not Forsake Me Oh My Darling,’ and supposing a reversal process was needed, what if Seltzman had not been able to develop a reversal process? The Village would have been left with the mind of their choosing in Number 6’s body. They could have then briefed the Colonel about Number 6, and then all that remained would be to release him back into the outside world. The only trouble is ZM73 had already handed in his resignation about a year earlier, and no longer worked for British Intelligence! But then if he were to marry Janet Portland, he’d become Sir Charles Portland’s son-in-law, and might be able to get his old job back within the department!

Be seeing you

Prismatic Reflection

   This particular “imprint” of The Tally Ho has now reached its 50th anniversary with this, its 50th  issue. I say imprint because there have long since been other such Tally Ho magazines and newsletters over the years. It’s really quite remarkable that The Tally Ho has survived for so long, because when I published the first four page issue, never did I think the paper would evolve into the paper it has become. Nor could I have envisaged how popular the paper would turn out to be amongst enthusiasts for ‘the Prisoner,’ especially when taking the Internet into consideration. That is part of the reason why I originally published The Tally Ho in its “retro” format, also the fact that readers would be able to hold it in their hands. During the late 70’s and  even into the mid 1990’s such newsletters and magazines were being published by ‘Prisoner’ enthusiasts in ‘Prisoner’ local groups of Six of One the length and breath of Britain. Today I believe The Tally Ho is the last of its kind to be published. Yes its several sheets of paper simply stapled together, but it’s the content that matters. You can produce a wonderful looking glossy magazine, but if there’s nothing of interest in it…
            Another reason for originally producing The Tally Ho was simply because I wanted to do something in connection to ‘the Prisoner.’ So who were the original recipients of the newsletter? I merely sent copies out to friends four times a year, and still do so today, while other readers have become firm friends through receiving The Tally Ho. But isn’t the title of the newsletter a little obvious? Well it’s in keeping with the name of The Village broadsheet, although I did toy with the titles of ‘Village Weekly,’ ‘Village Mercury,’ and ‘Tally Ho Journal,’ all of which can be seen in the episodes ‘Arrival,’ ‘Hammer Into Anvil,’ and ‘It’s Your  Funeral.’ Obviously ‘Village Weekly’ wasn’t right as there was no way I could publish the newsletter on a weekly basis, I almost chose ‘Tally Ho Journal’ for the title, and I do still like it. So what did the first issue I published look like? Well the readers of that issue, who have remained faithful to The Tally Ho will know, and may have retained each issue since. But for readers who are more recent to the paper I have reproduced it on the  following four pages. I had to photocopy it from the original paper, because I did not bother to keep copies of the early issues on disc, as I didn’t think the paper would gain new readers, or that a “back number service” of previous issues would ever be required. Yes the issue is na├»ve, there’s a good deal of “white space” as I call it, and the pictures could have been larger, but I had never produced a newsletter before and had to start somewhere. And at the time when the first issue went to print the printer was playing up, hence green being the dominant colour in the pictures! But it was topical in one respect in at the time Prime Minister Tony Blair called for “Increased Vigilance Call!” That I thought to be very Villagesque! Also readers who attended this years Prisoner Convention held at Portmeirion can compare it to the report of the 2005 Convention. In fact some readers of The Tally Ho will have been there, but perhaps not read that particular brief report!
   At the same time I started producing The Tally Ho, being a fan of ‘Danger Man,’ for a short time I published ‘The Jolly Roger” which only ran for a few issues, because as well as The Tally Ho, I was working on two manuscripts regarding ‘the Prisoner,’ and carrying out a good deal of research at the same time, and so it became a question of time. So something had to give, and that was ‘The Jolly Roger!’
   So what of the future for The Tally Ho? Well as long as there are enthusiasts of ‘the Prisoner’ out there who want to read it, and as long as I am inspired to do so, it will be my pleasure to keep publishing the paper on a quarterly basis. I have to admit that in the beginning it was a struggle because I was producing all the content myself. It was my dream that readers themselves would make contributions to the paper, it took several years to achieve that. The paper has come a long way since that first issue, having grown in both size and reputation. And now a number of readers send in their contributions which I always enjoy reading, as well as publish. Only once did I refuse to publish an item, on the grounds I found it to be completely inappropriate, and libellous! I always try my best to encourage people to contribute to the Tally Ho. Firstly as the editor it makes my task that much easier, and secondly I know that people have interesting and fascinating things to write about ‘the Prisoner,’ which other people enjoy reading, but who perhaps do not necessarily feel the need to respond to {that can be frustrating in some quarters} or even to contribute themselves. So there it is, The Tally Ho, a brief history of the paper in its current format enjoyed by a modest readership which has fluctuated over the years. Well some people became no longer interested in either the newsletter or ‘the Prisoner’ itself! 

    Readers will have observed a change with this issue in that the Village font type is only used on four pages, that is because those pages had been printed before I took the decision to change the font to Times New Roman which is the correct font type for The Tally Ho, or Bookman Old Style in a couple of cases according to space used on a page. I am guilty of liking, and using the Village font too much. But it was wrong for The Tally Ho, and I knew it was wrong. However when I was writing the front page story and added the image of The Tally Ho half page, the type for the paper was blatantly obviously wrong, hence the change.
    Of course it’s said that the print font for The Village is
Alberta with a modified ‘e’ and that is reflected on sign posts and wall posters around The Village, and yet that font is not used for The Tally Ho. Even the numbers on the badges worn in The Village are not Alberta, not even “Village font,” but FUTURA BOOK!  


Be seeing you                                                                                                            

Friday, 19 May 2017

The Schizoid Man


    Tonight on ‘True Entertainment’ at ten o’clock I can watch ‘The Schizoid Man,’ I grant you there’s nothing unusual in that. However, I shall also be watching ‘The Schizoid Man’ along with ‘The General’ on Sunday as ‘True Entrainment’ continues their second screening of ‘the Prisoner.’
   It’s rather a novelty really, to be able to watch a live television screening the same episode within three days, but the third screening of the episode before the second. Its rather like ‘The Schizoid Man,’ one can be either, the other way round, or simply both.

Be watching The Schizoid Man – Be seeing you

THE TALLY HO

   50th Anniversary Edition!
                           by our own reporter

   Its been 50 years since The Tally Ho first appeared as a broad- sheet in ‘the Prisoner.’ In the series there were no less than 6 issues seen on screen, although one might argue there were 7 issues. But the same issue was used for both ‘A B And C,’ and ‘The Schizoid Man,’ first for the headline ‘Is No.2 fit For Further Term?’ The second for the date Feb10th, although the date does appear in both episodes, as does the headline, which only leads to confusion amongst enthusiasts for ‘the Prisoner.’ And that raises the question, can the reader believe anything they read in the Tally Ho? Because the above issue actually contained “fake news!” True enough No.6 was interviewed briefly by a contributor to The Tally Ho No.113, and his photograph taken by No.113b. However not on word of that interview appeared in the above article, and No.6 didn’t speak his mind because the article in question had already been written and published. Even the photograph isn't right, because No.6 is pictured in mufti, when he should be pictured wearing his piped jacket and 6 rosette! And what exactly are “the facts behind Town Hall?” I don’t know of anyone who actually knows!
     Since late 1978 The Tally Ho title has been adopted for numerous newsletters and magazines published in both America and Britain by enthusiasts, to be read by fans of ‘the Prisoner.’ Suffice to say that all past “hard copy” forms of The Tally Ho have long since became part of Prisoner appreciation history. However The Tally Ho does still survive on-line at http://www.match-cut.de/tho/tallyho66.htm and at http://prisoner.gigacorp.net/tallyho.html . And then in 2005 The Tally Ho suddenly reappeared as a “hard copy” 4 page newsletter, which was distributed to a number of enthusiasts of ‘the Prisoner’ which contained news and information. But why bother to produce a retro looking newsletter, when enthusiasts have numerous web sites relating to ‘the Prisoner’ at their finger tips? I put this to the editor of the paper.
  “I simply wanted to publish such a newsletter. One that people can get their hands on, and sit relaxed in a comfy armchair with a cup of coffee or tea to read it, instead of sitting there staring at a screen. I like the  retro look of The Tally Ho, besides it wouldn’t be cost effective for me to publish a glossy magazine.” It’s a question of quantity over quality. “Exactly. Its no good producing a nice looking, full glossy magazine if the contents are of poor quality. That’s one thing about this current Tally Ho, as it has matured the issues have become bumper packed with interesting and informative articles, news, as well as being amusing, entertaining and dead interesting!” So you say. “Well ask the readers, just ask the readers, a number of whom have become regular contributors to the newsletter. Did I say newsletter, its content is more like a magazine.” So you say! “So said a couple of readers, but I like to think of it as a paper, or journal.”
   So what is the idea behind The Village broadsheet being called The Tally Ho? Who is “our own reporter”? “Tally Ho” is
a huntsman's cry to the chasing pack of hounds on sighting a fox. In The Village, more often than not, its No.6 who ends up being chased by the pack! And “our own reporter”? Could it really have been someone like me, rather then No.113 who interviewed No.6, who sits in an office writing up columns such as this off the top of his head? Well someone had to have written up that article called “No.6 Speaks His Mind,” because he did no such thing, well not to The Tally Ho he didn’t. The article was made up in order to make No.6 sound good, otherwise no-one may have voted for him and he wouldn’t have been elected as the new No.2. A position he couldn’t hold for 5 minutes!

Be seeing you

Page 5

    5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 just checking the profundity. But 5 that’s me, not............... 5 that’s me! But is that Number 5, or my age? My age I shouldn’t wonder, after all the Prisoner’s mind had been regressed back to his childhood, just in time to begin going to school and that would be at the age of 5 in those days. I’m higher than 86, I’m higher than.............Number 7, but that’s not saying much, there’s no number 7 in The Village. And I’m not as high as 2, he’s second only to one, unless 1 is low, like the ace in a suit of cards, aces can be high or low, that being the case 1 could be the lowest of the low. And he’s no longer the boss, making me four points higher and more important than 1!

Be seeing you

What’s Going On Here?


  Going on Number 2? Well to begin with, you’re disrupting the work of the Observers, seeing as you’ve managed to turn everyone’s head away from their monitors! The Supervisor-Number 26 who is the most capable of the Supervisors appears to have been given an assistant, Number 60. But the trouble is, the Supervisor who also acts as a radio DJ made a mistake, he read out a bogus birthday greeting for Number 6, when it wasn’t even his birthday. But how was the Supervisor to have known that? He simply read out over the public address system what was put before him. And for that you finished him, and promoted Number 60 to the position of Supervisor. If Number 60 hadn’t been second to the Supervisor in the first place, you wouldn’t have been able to do that. You wouldn’t have been able to relieve Number 26 from his position because there wouldn’t have been anyone for you to promote in his place!
   So what’s going on here Number 2? Misunderstanding, trickery, contrivance, mismanagement on your part! There are no enemies in your midst, only the ones you create yourself, but much more than that there is no conspiracy against you or The Village. You are the unwitting subject of acts of jamming, that’s what’s been going on and will continue to go one. What’s more since you refused Number 1’s offer of further assistance, you’ve been hung out to dry!

Be seeing you

Wednesday, 17 May 2017

A Favourite Scene In The Girl Who Was Death


    There is no end to Number 6’s talents, but since when had he become a child minder, and whose children was he minding? One can only hazard a guess as to whether this was a one-off, or how many previous times Number 6 had sat there telling the three children his stories. But he did promise the children that he would return the next evening, as he didn’t think he had any other important appointments. Whether he did or not is unknown, but since he knew that Number 2 had been watching all along, it no longer mattered whether he did or whether he didn’t. But no doubt a family was engaged to get Number 6 to child mind for them, under the guidance of Number 2. But why Number 6 should take on such a task we don’t know. Although he has been known to be of assistance to people from time to time, just ask Alison-Number 24 of ‘The Schizoid Man.’ Perhaps he saw it as a harmless occupation, and he might have liked children!

Be seeing you

Exhibition of Arts And Crafts

                    “Sometimes In My Dreams!”
BcNu


Quote For The Day

    “Jamming”
    “You mean domestic science?”
    “You’ll learn about Jamming one of these days, it’s one of the most important ways of fighting back!” 
                                     {Number50 and Number 6 – It’s Your Funeral}


    One day Number 6 will learn all about Jamming. But isn’t it possible that he is the original jammer? After all look at all those false activities he carried out, and Number 2 fell for each one in turn. It was Number 6’s jamming activities which brought Number 2 to a nervous breakdown! In my opinion there were certain citizens who observed Number 6’s jamming activities and having taken his example, they began carrying out such nonexistent plots to confuse the Observers.
   But what should Number 50-Monique know of Jamming? It’s possible that although she no longer has a mother, Number 50 is a child born in The Village. Unless of course, the Watchmaker and his family were brought to The Village together, if so it might be that the Watchmaker came to The Village voluntarily. But then the latter does not automatically preclude the former!
    As for the Watchmaker, he’s not one for jamming, he’s a dangerous radical, an anarchist who will take the hard line in order to make his protest. He’s met no-one in The Village who has committed a crime, does that mean he has committed no crime either? And when it comes to crimes, people may not have committed a criminal act, but a moral one in the eyes of The Village administration, as in the case of Number 53 the electrical engineer who invented a defence system. His moral crime was to think that all nations should have it, as it would have ensured World peace. As for The Prisoner all he did was resign!

Be seeing you

Tuesday, 16 May 2017

The Prisoner and true Entertainment



    Would you believe it! Last night a third screening of ‘the Prisoner’ began with ‘Arrival,’ before the second screening has even been completed! Which means the television viewer can now watch ‘the Prisoner’ weekdays Monday to Friday, one episode per night at 10pm, and then rejoin the series on Sunday at 3 in the afternoon with ‘The Schizoid Man,’ and ‘The General.’
   Certainly devotees of ‘the Prisoner,’ who like to watch “live” screenings of the series, are now being spoilt.

Be seeing you, be watching ‘The Chimes of Big Ben.’

Monday, 15 May 2017

Caught On Camera!

   What was it Number 6 once said? “The atmosphere here is very different from what it was it was elsewhere!”

Be seeing you

Whirlybirds!

     I was talking with an old friend a couple of weeks ago, and we were chatting about things ‘Prisoner,’ when he made the comment about the helicopter seen taking off outside the ‘The Schizoid Man.’
   He asked me if I'd noticed that when the helicopter takes off it doesn’t have buoyancy floats fitted to its skids. But how when fully airborne it’s suddenly fitted with the buoyancy floats, and when it lands again the buoyancy floats have gone again!
    I congratulated him upon his observation, but said he had failed to observe that these are two different helicopters! It’s a pity that this scene was spoilt by the use of sock film footage of F-BNKZ which was filmed at Portmeirion, when they should have filmed more footage of the helicopter F-BOEH at MGM film studios at Elstree Borehamwood than they did, and could have done.

Be seeing you

Thought For The Day

    Everyday life in The Village must be incredibly boring, I mean for anyone who is not otherwise employed. What do they do with prisoners who have given up all the information they have? Unless they can be turned and trusted to leave The Village, they have to remain as lifers.
    Number 6 for example, what does he do all day? Well he plots to escape, attempts to escape. Involves himself in the machinations of Number 2. He plays chess, enjoys the semi-weekly Kosho practice. Works out using his homemade gymnasium apparatus. Takes daily walks around The Village, daily climbs the
Bell tower. Sits to have his portrait painted, involves himself in Arts and Crafts, and spends time drinking coffee at the Cafe. Helps out and comes to the aid of other citizens on occasion, and when he’s not busy doing all that, he drinks coffee and eats a ham sandwich whilst pacing the floor of his study! That is of course when he’s not being put to various tests and ordeals by Number 2!
    But everyday life in The Village, everyone’s a prisoner, with only a few people who are actually allowed to leave, but even then that doesn’t stop them from being life members of the Village. After all there’s nothing stopping them from bringing you back, look at Number 2’s reaction in ‘Once Upon A time’ when he’s been brought back to The Village. He was downright angry, as well as being abusive to Number 1, well at least I think it was Number 1, its so difficult to say with any real certainty!
   But chiefly everyday life is having to deal with Number 6!


Be seeing you

Sunday, 14 May 2017

A B and C And Free For All

   This afternoon on ‘True Entertainment,’ ‘A B and C’ and ‘Free For All,’ I have a friend and fellow enthusiast for ‘the Prisoner,’ so it will be a pleasure to watch at least one episode with him.
 It is a surreal moment in ‘A B and C’ when Number 6 is seen entering the laboratory, in his dream, when Number 2 and his assistant Number 14 are awake, yet caught up within an imaginary scene. Number Six says to Number 2 “I forgot to give you this” holding out a white envelope. Number 2 is then reduced to yelling at himself on the screen “Open it you fool, open it” in his desperation to know what the envelope contains. He thinks it’s something the Prisoner had to sell, and then again it might have the Prisoner’s letter of resignation. And yet in reality, if it’s possible for reality to dwell within a dream, all the envelope contained were a number of holiday leaflets. So what he told Engadine was true, he really was going on holiday!

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


Be seeing you

Saturday, 13 May 2017

This Evening I Am Mostly Watching Checkmate


    Checkmate – The Village is expanding as newcomers arrive. Six asks a woman where they've come from? "We just got off the bus." Six asks where she got on the bus? "The Village" the young woman replies. Six informers her that this is The Village, they've arrived. "Isn't that just the wildest thing?"
    More Village means that our way of life is becoming the very conscience of the universe. 2 exaggerates of course, but only slightly.
    More Village means The Village is expanding with newcomers arriving by bus. But from where do all the newcomers to The Village come?
    “What do you think kids? Isn’t it beautiful? Where do you think the clinic is? That’s where Two will be.”
   Six approaches a young woman with her two children who have just got off the bus.
    “Who are you people?”
    “Newcomers” the woman tells him.
    “So where have you come from?” Six asks her.
    “We just got off the bus.”
    “Where did you get on the bus?”
    “Well the Village.”
    “No, this is the Village. You've arrived.'”
    “'Well isn't that just the wildest thing” the woman laughs.
    More Village, as Two informs us, means that the way of life in The Village is becoming the very consciousness of the universe. He exaggerates, but only slightly.
    Six isn't at all well. He received an appointment at the Clinic from the postman, who didn't ask Six to sign his number! He appears to be dying, and confronts Two on a building site.
   “What’s this?” he asks Two, holding out his Clinic appointment card.
   “Is it perhaps your certificate of dying?”
   “Why now? You could have killed me a thousand times.”
   “I’ve tried every way I know to help you belong, but you still refuse. You choose. This life….or no life.”
   “Assimilate or die.”
    “That is the great gift of Village death, clarity of choice.”
    The newcomers are good people. Look at them. They choose life. But you…..Six swears he’ll find a way out before he dies. But Two feels sorry for Six, and so gives him the very secret of life…….breathe in…..breathe out…..more Village! Two will watch Six die…one breath at a time, Six. One tick of the clock at a time, tic tic, tic tic!
   But Six doesn’t die, he is the answer to the future of The Village. Because as more and more holes open up, The Village being in danger of slipping into oblivion 147 can see that Six is the one, “We want Six, Six is the one. We want Six, Six is the one.” However back in ‘Anvil’ when a schoolgirl, 1,100, has something to say about One, when asked the oldest question in Village history, who is Number 1? She replies “There is no Number One, and there never has been and there never will be. The concept of the number Two is an act of humility. The title reminds us all that we are all pubic servants, even Number Two. No-one is Number One.” So perhaps 1,100 got it wrong, that Six is the first Number 1, seeing as he’s the one. Because Number 1 is the boss, and while Six sits in the sand with 313, dreaming of doing it the right way, to make a good Village. He thinks he could do it. He thinks he has to try, with the help of 313, whatever the cost. 313 sheds a tear because it’s her counterpart, Sarah in
New York who will have to dream The Village. Sarah has mental problems, because she was abused as a child. So is 313 shedding a tear for herself, or for Six, or The Village that is to come? Because his hopes of making a better Village will be dashed because of the mental material he will have to work with in Sarah’s subconscious!
   And so another screening of this series comes to an end all too soon. I’m always left with the feeling of wanting more……
.More Village! Well I can always put the DVD discs into the machine again!

 Don't forget, breathe in......breathe out..........more......Village.
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A Village Day

    It was a day much as any other day, sunny but with the warning of intermittent showers later in the day. Ice cream was on sale, the flavour of the day strawberry. I sat where I usually sat in the late afternoon, on a bench in the Piazza. Other citizens were promenading around the pool and fountain. A couple of taxis were driving round, and an old gentleman was riding a tricycle, while another wheeled a Penny Farthing about. The ex-Admiral and his flag officer were sailing plastic boats in the water of the Free Sea. Then there came the loud engine noise of the helicopter as it circled overhead. Who was it bringing to The Village now?
    Village activities are widely encouraged, human chess matches, Kosho, fencing, shooting, Arts and Crafts exhibitions, painting competitions, Village festivals, Appreciation Day it being a Wednesday so that’s not today. Educational lessons, local elections, and carnival, all to keep the citizens busy both in mind and body to stop them thinking of and putting into practice plans for escape!
    I got up to make my way back to the Old People’s Home when a young man approached me and asked if he could walk with me.
    “That could be your way out of here.”
    I looked at the man and smiled.
    “You don’t believe me?”
    “Don’t toy with an old man, there’s nothing to be gained by that.”
    “Don’t you want your freedom?”
    “Freedom, what’s the good of that?”
    “You don’t want to leave?”
    “Where should I go?”
    “You’ve settled for life here........in The Village.”
    “Village is enough for me.”
    “It’s more than enough for me!”
    “Meaning?”
    “I want to get out!”
    “To escape you mean?”
    “What else is there?”
    “But you are...........”
    “Number Two.”
    “Yes, you can leave any time you like.”
    “Who told you that?”
    “That’s what they told me.”
    “You mean you.........”
    “I was once in your canvas shoes. But they held me back for a second term in office.”
    “You’re still here, after all these years!”
    “Years, decades.....before the war, since the war.....I’ve forgotten which war!”
    “A long time.”
    “You can fly a helicopter?”
    “Yes.”
    “Its seems that everyone can fly a helicopter, even our friend the diminutive
Butler. He made me feel quite inadequate!”
    “Inadequate?”
    “Yes.”
    “You would take an old man with you?”
    “Yes.”
    “Why?”
    “I’m feeling generous.”
    “I’m too old.”
    “For what?”
    “Escape.”
    “You won’t come with me?”
    “You don’t need me. Besides Village life suits me, I’m resigned to it.”
    At the Old people’s Home I watched the man they call Number 2 walk away across the lawn, and down the slope towards a green triangular lawn where the helicopter stood. I never knew why he wanted me along. A few moments later the helicopter lifted off and took to the air. I watched it fly out across the estuary towards the far hills. I watched it begin to turn back. Suddenly a door of the cabin opened, and a man fell from the helicopter into the water below. The helicopter flew back and landed on the triangular lawn, while Number 2 floundered in the water. Then there came a surge in the water, water spouted into the air as the white membranic mass of the Guardian burst through the surface of the water, and skimmed across the waves towards the figure in the water. There was nothing I could do, there was nothing anyone could do, it was just another Village Day.


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Exhibition of Arts And Crafts

                           “Tea For Two!”

BcNu

A B & C - Bang!

    “A. Find missing link, when I have found it I shall refine it, retune it, and you will play our game. B. Put it together, and if I fail C BANG!” It’s a pity that in this there doesn’t seem to be any room for ‘If I succeed,’ it’s as though Number 2’s failure is expected, is inevitable. The episode of ‘Once Upon A Time’ appears to have parallel lines as ‘A B And C,’ in effect Number 2 believes Number 6 was going to sell out. His job is to discover what he had to sell and to whom he was going to sell it. And having researched the Prisoner’s whole life, Number 2 discovers it boils down to three people, A B and C. It wasn’t A, and it wasn’t B, and when it came to C this marked Number 2’s eventual failure…..BANG!

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Thursday, 11 May 2017

A Favourite Scene In Checkmate


   When Number 6, having recruited Number 53, the Rook, as one of his reliable men they approach Number 42 who is busy painting a wall. Number 6 puts on an air of authority and asks Number 53 what he thinks. Number 42 sees the two men below and asks if there’s something wrong. Number 6 asks him if he painted this wall. That’s a stupid question seeing that Number 42 has a paintbrush in his hand! But the painter said that if its not satisfactory he’d paint it again. But both Number 6 and Number 53 are satisfied and tell Number 42 to carry on and that they’d be in touch with him. But clearly someone wasn’t satisfied with how 42 had painted that wall. Because the next day when Number 6 goes about The Village alerting his reliable men with the code phrase “Rook to Queen’s pawn six check,” Number 42 is still painting that same wall!
   But going back to this scene, when Number 6 and Number 53 approach Number 42 who is busy painting a wall, you can plainly hear the words “You up there Fred?” and the reply comes “Yes.” So the first and immediate question came, who’s Fred? And who was shouting after him? And secondly, Patrick McGoohan could not have failed to hear the shout, thus spoiling the scene, so why didn’t he have the filming of the scene cut, and go for another take?

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Thought For The Day


    Number 6 12 apologizes to Number 2 for having not shaved, he couldn’t find a razor, it must have been mislaid! Thinking about it, I’m not surprised it was confiscated on Number 6’s arrival in The Village, especially if it was anything like John Drake’s razors! One had a micro tape recorder hidden in it, and another had a radio for sending an automatic distress signal, which he used that time he infiltrated Colony Three. Although in ‘Dance of The Dead’ we see Number 6 using an electric razor in his bathroom, a Ronson Super Trim 260 {not of the type used by John Drake} although watching him on the wall screen he doesn’t seem to be getting on with it very well. Mind you I’m not surprised, I myself have a brand new, never used Philishave electrical razor, of the kind John Drake uses in several episodes of ‘Danger Man.’ But I couldn’t get on with it, the blades aren’t at all sharp, and nor does it have micro tape recorder hidden in it!
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Quote For The Day

    “I believe he was going to sell out. I want to know what he had to sell, and to whom he was going to sell it.”
                                     {Number 2 – A B and C}
    Number 2 said they had research and computed Number 6’s whole life, and apparently it boiled down the three people, ‘A B and C.’ Although ‘A’ might look like a dodgy second-hand car salesman, he did in fact make World news about two years earlier. I expect he defected, seeing as he and Number 6 were once on the same side doing the same job, but now on opposite sides. There seems to have been a lot of that about at the time, people going off and defecting, there was Chambers who became “late” of the Foreign Office, and not forgetting Cobb.
    ‘B’ even looked like a spy, even though she was made to look like a woman in distress. They like to know everything, but they didn’t know about ‘B’s’ son. I’ve never been quite sure which side ‘B’ was working for, despite her foreign accent. Even if she worked for the other side, Number 6 was still friendly towards her, he even allowed himself the luxury of getting close to her when they danced. He even knew about her son.
    As for ‘C,’ ‘C’ could have been anyone. There was no photograph of ‘C,’ and all they knew was that ‘C’ is known to be French and that ‘C’ attended
Engadine’s celebrated parties. And yet as it turned out Engadine could have been ‘C,’ but she wasn’t at all that important, she merely used her parties to bring certain people together. For espionage purposes, possibly blackmail would be applied, information, if not people, would be extracted forcibly, by kidnapping them if necessary. No Engadine wasn’t ‘C,’ ‘C’ turned out to be Number 2, which came as something of shock to him when he found that out, even though he turned out not to be French! You’d have thought he would have known that all the time, seeing as he’d had Number 6’s entire life researched and computed. But then no-one and nothing, including computers are infallible, as Number 2 would find at a later date. I wonder if the General was used for the computing of Number 6’s entire life, no wonder Number 2 got it so wrong if he did. After all Number 6 really was going on holiday, even that piece of information is documented in his file, and Number 2 would have known that, had he taken time to read it. They say that things are as easy as A B and C, well tell that to Number 2!

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Tuesday, 9 May 2017

Citizen No.6? No 12!


   In ‘The Schizoid Man,’ Number 2 greets Number 12 like an old friend, which of course he is.
   “Ah my dear chap delighted to see you, ha, ha you’re looking fine, you really are.”
   And during this meeting of apparently old friends, Number 2 holds out his hand in order to shake Number 12’s. Number 12 offers his left hand {perhaps because Number 6 is feeling a little awkward because of the effects of the recent electrical therapy, in having made his left hand his dominant hand} but Number 2 takes 12’s right hand and shakes it warmly. You can then see that Number 6 instantly feels more comfortable for that. But why Number 6 should feel awkward about it I don’t know, after all real left-handed people use their right hand to shake the hand of other people.

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Exhibition of Arts And Crafts

                     “That Was A Good Move!”

BcNu

Number 2

    The reason given as to why so many different Number 2's are employed in The Village, is so that the Prisoner-Number 6 is unable to form a relationship with his interrogator. And yet Number 6 does enjoy a rapport with Number 2 during ‘The Chimes of Big Ben,’ and in ‘Once Upon A Time’ Number 2 states that he’s beginning to like Number 6. So why bring back a failed Number 2 in order to have a second bite of the apple? Perhaps because the failure of the plan used in ‘The Chimes of Big Ben’ could not be completely laid at the feet of Number 2, apparently he had said they were using the wrong approach. But never mind, Nadia said he’d done his best, that she would stress that in her report. So is that why this Number 2 was brought back to The Village, because before, they were using the wrong approach, and that this time he could use the more direct approach of Degree Absolute? Perhaps the rapport between 6 and this 2 should have been considered, it might have been wiser to have brought someone else to The Village in order to go “one to one” with Number 6, someone who didn’t know him. This wasn’t the first time that Number 2 saw a second term in office, in between were ‘A B and C’ and ‘The General.’
    As with his predecessor this Number 2 was given a task involving Number 6, which just as before ended in failure. So why then bring back a failed Number 2 for a second term in office? Perhaps it was a question of personnel. Perhaps it was because being involved with the educational experiment of Speedlearn Number 2 wouldn’t be involved with Number 6. However they had not accounted for Number 6 involving himself! But if we look at it the other way around, the fact that in the opening sequence of ‘the General’ Number 2 announces himself as the new Number 2, and in ‘A B And C’ he’s Number 2 suggests that ‘The General’ should be screened before ‘A B And C,’ the situation is turned on its head. The fact that ‘The General’ is a complete and utter disaster for Number 2, with the deaths of the Professor and Number 12, together with the destruction of the General, this Number 2 is still either retained, or brought back to The Village in order to deal with Number 6. Perhaps the thinking behind that, is that Number 2 couldn’t do worse dealing with Number 6!
   Another Number 2, previously of ‘The Girl Who Was Death,’ is brought back in the guise of the President, a High Court Judge, in order to oversee the trials of ‘Fall Out,’ The Village having reached a democratic crisis! We have no idea how long Number 2 spent setting Number 6 up as a child minder, or how many tales he told those three children in order to try and get Number 6 to drop his guard with children. But it was worth a try, as anything is worth a try once, not that I think Number 2 actually believed that it would work. Or at least that’s the impression I get “Might drop his guard with children,” its how he says it that gives me the impression that it wasn’t his idea, and perhaps thought it a rather lame idea. So another failed Number 2 is brought back to The Village. And what happened? The encounter between Number 6 and Number 1 went unsupervised. A violent revolution, the unscheduled launching of the rocket, the loss of Number 1, the escape of Number 6, together with the complete evacuation of The Village. Things couldn’t have turned out worse for this Number 2, compounding the fact that they shouldn’t have strayed from the original idea of having using different Number 2’s. But even if they hadn’t, would anyone else have faired any better given the circumstances? For example, had the new Number 2 of ‘Free For All’ been carried over into ‘The Schizoid Man’ would she have handled the situation any differently? Of course it is clearly impossible to say, but it’s quite possible that given the same circumstances of ‘The Schizoid Man,’ the result would have been the same no matter who was Number 2.

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Sunday, 7 May 2017

The Prisoner


    Once again ‘True Entertainment’ commence screening ‘the Prisoner’ today, this afternoon, between 3 and 5pm. This but only the second occasion upon which I will have watched a television broadcast of the series twice in the same year, the first was back in 1976. No doubt ‘Arrival’ and ‘The Chimes of Big Ben will be screened in 16:9 picture ratio, but never mind, as Number 2 once said “It’s great!” And it will be quite a novelty, as well as a first it will be to sit and watch the two episodes in the afternoon.
   All that remains is to wait and anticipate with great relish ‘the Prisoner’ and enjoy watching my first and third favourite episodes of the series.

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