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Tuesday, 30 April 2019

The German 50th Anniversary of The Prisoner

   In the autumn of 1969 ‘the Prisoner’ or ‘Nummer Sechs’ as it was renamed was screened in Germany for the first time. To celebrate this milestone a group of German enthusiasts are to hold a very special event.
   The date of the event is 12th of October 2019 and is to be held in a small municipal building, Nordstadtzentrum, in Giessen, near Frankfurt in Germany.
    Click on the link below and view the promotional videos


    Special guests are to be invited, and the event will also see discussions and screenings. It is planned that no entrance fee will be charged, but it is hoped that attendees will donate towards the event costs, and there will be competition and raffle prize fundraising opportunities on the day itself.


Be seeing you

Monday, 29 April 2019

A Falling Out

    The day began just like any other day. I got out of bed, washed, shaved, dressed, went into the lounge and drawing back the curtains I looked outside. The weather was wet and windy, a typical autumnal day in fact, and then..............
    High Court Judge “We are gathered here today in regard to the matter of a democratic crisis, and this session is now in security.”
    Delegate “What does that mean?”
    “We are locked in!”
    The cavern was large, stalactites hung down from the walls, the stalagmites had been removed and a smooth floor had been laid. Snowdrop policemen patrolled the area, and white robed figures busied themselves. There was a steel see-saw device with a man sat at either end manning heavy machine guns.
    “What democratic crisis?” asked a man sat on the back bench of the assembly.
    Another said “Yes that’s right, we had democracy, but then it was taken away because it was seen to be inefficient!”
    “Is that the reason for this democratic crisis, because there’s no democracy in the village?”
    “I’m gone, gone away man!”
    “Who is that Judge?”
    “No-one.”
    “He must be someone.”
    “He was with us then he went and gone!”
    “He dropped out?”
    “Yes, then dropped in here!”
    High Court Judge “A funny thing happened on my way here!”
    “Really?”
    “No not really, but it did have something to do with a clown. That’s when I was fetched up here.”
    “You know why you are here?”
    “I don’t even know where here is!”
    The delegates of the Assembly laugh.
    The Judge brings the Assembly to order with a bang of his gavel!
    “When I want silence I shall have silence. Now Number....what is your number?”
    “I don’t have a number man, numbers are for squares man, you dig?”
    “Oh I dig alright.”
    “Keep on digging man, he who digs a pit for others generally ends up in it themselves dad.”
    “What did you call me?”
    “He called you dad.”
    “Thank you.”
    “Don’t mention it........dad.”
    Two men put on trial, one dropped out, the other dropped in. Then there’s the regrettable bullet, the power to put down any revolution, and enough security to back it up.
    A late No.2 “I shouldn’t be here you know.”
    “Why not?”
    “Because I’m not a damned inmate, in fact I should be asking the questions, interrogating the prisoners!”
    “There are no questions!”
    “No questions?”
    ”We know all the answers, so why waste time asking the questions?”
    “Then why?”
    “There is an answer to that, the problem is that the one being asked doesn’t always know the answer, seems to be the answer.”
    “That doesn’t make any sense.”
    “I can’t help that.”
    “So why all this rigmarole?”
    “To give each one of you a chance to plead your case.”
    “Who goes first.”
    “Who was here then he went and gone. We made the mistake of....well never mind that. Perhaps you would like to be the first to plead your case?”
    “I play your game?”
    “Take the rostrum.”
    The former No.2 took the rostrum, he told it like it is, like it was, like it used to be. But what was so deplorable is that, he resisted for so short a time! Accused of biting the hand that feeds, and yet he laid his life on the line for the cause, and paid the ultimate price. Well lets be honest, he was never up to the challenge!
    No.48 was next, well he was to have been, he was here but then he went and gone, and hasn’t been seen since!
    As for.............. “Patrick wake up, wake up you’re having a bad dream!”
    “Eh, what, no I must get this down now, it’s going to be great. It came to me in a dream........”


Be seeing you

In The Village

    “We’re still trying to discover why Rover killed Number 6.”
    “There’s going to be hell to pay!”
    “I wouldn’t say that. You know what happens now of course?”
    “I go back to my cottage, change into my civilian clothes. Then it’s a short taxi ride to the helicopter where I leave for the landing stage to pick up the jet from there.”
    “Not quite. You go back to your cottage.......change into the brown jacket hanging in the wardrobe, and spend the rest of your life here in the village as Number 6!”
    “You can’t do that!”
    “I don’t see why not. Susan died a year ago, so no-one’s going to miss you.”
    “What about the people in my department? Some embarrassing questions will be asked if I don’t return.”
    “Oh I don’t think so!”
    “Why don’t you think so?”
    “Because there was a most regrettable accident, it was Curtis who was suffocated to death, such a tragedy. However to the outside world he died in an accident at sea, sadly there were no survivors. But then he knew the risks.”
    “You’ll never get away with it. I’ll shout the house down.”
    “Shout as loud as you like, protest as much as you like, no-one will believe you.”
    “ I’m not a number, I am a free man, and I am certainly not your Number 6!”.”
    “Excellent, see how good you are at it, no-one would know you are not Number 6!”
    “This isn’t 18th century France, and I’m not the man in the iron mask!”
    “No, but you have been able to draw the parallel, at least that much has not escaped you.”
    “And if I do not play ball?”
    Number 2 produced a gas gun.
    “Then we’ll have no further use for you..... one squirt you’re paralyzed, two squirts you’re dead. One squirt I think!”
     “No......no.......no.”
     Hissssssssssssss
    Number 2 picked up the yellow ‘L’ shaped intercom “Control Room........Supervisor.”
    “Supervisor here sir.”
    “Number 6 has gone berserk, he just attacked me. I’ve had to subdue him with nerve gas, send security to my office and have him taken back to his cottage.”
    “Yes sir.”
    “Also Number 6 is to be secured in his cottage for the time being, so you can re-activate Rover.”
    “Yes sir.”
    “Oh and Number 6 is under the illusion that he’s Number 12, and wants to leave the village.”
    The Supervisor laughs quietly to himself “Understood sir, Number 6 will try anything to escape!”


Be seeing you

Saturday, 27 April 2019

More Village Tonight – Anvil

    The series will be half over after ‘Anvil’ this evening, but the glass is still half full with three more episodes to come. The trouble is one of those episodes is ‘Darling,’ the weakest episode in the series, which arguably reflects ‘Do Not Forsake Me Oh My Darling’ being the weakest episode of the original series.
   In ‘Anvil’ this evening, Two wants Six to work for him as an “Undercover.” Six thinks its a trap. Well it is a trap, but Two wants to see if Six can turn the situation to his own advantage.  
   Schoolgirl 1,100 tells us that there is no Number 1, that there has never been a Number 1, and there never will be!
   1955 looks like Patrick McGoohan playing the role of Robert Fuller in ‘Colony Three!’ Check it out!
    A right pair of Undercovers at The Village swimming pool, dressed in overalls stand out like two sore thumbs. They should have changed into swimming trunks!
    Someone has been using a Roach-cam to spy on Two!
    And the Therapy Zone isn’t quite what it was. There’s no being an alcoholic here, then returning to the flock in good time. Here the Therapy Zone is a dark nightmare place, with barking dogs, and people wandering about apparently not being helped at all.
     And finally, Two had discovered that it had been 1,100 who had been spying on him. There was only one thing to be done, and that was to send her for therapy. But the kindly old gentleman saw that there would be time for an ice cream first, and so offers one to 1,100.

    The trouble being 1,100 wasn’t given time to finish her ice cream before the men in white coats, and a black Bedford van came for her! This is perhaps the saddest image in the whole of THEPRIS6NER series!
Breathe in….breathe out….more Village!
Be seeing you

Tally Ho!

    Towards the end of ‘Checkmate,’ Number 6 asked about his confederates, those who took part in the escape plan {even though most of them didn’t appear to do anything} “They’ll be back on the chessboard tomorrow” Number 2 informed him. But the Shopkeeper Number 19 wasn’t “back on the chessboard” because we never see him again. He is replaced with a weasel sort of character, Number 112 as the new shopkeeper.
    Number 6 leaves the Green Dome having been threatened by a sadist at the point of a sword, and now he begins to plot the downfall of Number 2. He stops by the General Store, in the bay window a banner proclaims how “Music makes for a quiet mind,” while a poster has it that “Music begins where words leave off,” and another “Music says all.” He goes inside, selects a copy of The Tally Ho and shows interest in the selection of records. Number 6 would like to hear l’arlesienne, ah the Davier recording, it takes a Frenchman. Number 6 wants to hear all six records, but he doesn’t listen to all six records, that would have taken him the better part of the morning to do that. He only listens to three, and only the first bars at that, well it wasn’t a very satisfactory recording. That was Number 6’s first act of jamming, this was his second.
     The question here is, not one of security, but how did Number 6 know that soon after he had left the General Store, the shopkeeper-Number112 would go running to Number 2 in order to report Number 6’s activities. Because there was Number 6, skulking by the corner of his cottage watching the shopkeeper hurrying away to make his report…..a report that would last most of the morning….so who was minding the shop?
   Perhaps he did something like this, sticking a paper bag on the door handle saying “Back soon.”
Be seeing you

Caught On Camera!

  Number 2, having failed for a second time to gain who it was Number 6 was supposed to have been selling out to, is about to throw down ‘B’s’ file. But stops in mid action when he sees that telephone. It would seem that Number 2 of ‘Hammer Into Anvil’ is not the only 2 to be afraid of Number 1!
   As it happens I have a telephone exactly like that one, the prop was made especially for my 1999 film ‘Village Day’ along with three ‘L’ shaped telephones. I put the red, curved, over-sized, telephone away in a box for safe keeping several years ago now, but I’m damned if I can find it!


BCNU

Thursday, 25 April 2019

Village Life

    “You know what I’m going to do?”
    “What are you going to do?”
    “Resign!”
    “You can’t do that.”
    “Why not?”
    “Because they won’t let you.”~
    “Who won’t?”
    “What do you want to go and resign for?”
    “I’m fed up!”
    “Fed up with what?”
    “Administration!”
    “You’ve got a good job in administration.”
    “Oh yeah that’d be right. I’m responsible for parks and leisure!”
    “So?”
    “I make sure that the gardens are kept in order, to see the lawns are cut, and the hedges trimmed, and what flowers to have planted.”
    “What’s wrong with that?”
    “I’m also responsible for the use of municipal deckchairs, and changing tents on the beach. And to make sure the beach kiosk is always stocked with everything for the beach. Oh yes, and the highlight of my day is to choose the ice cream flavour for the day.”
    “What’s wrong with that? If you think you’ve got it bad I’m in charge of village infrastructure and maintenance.”
    “What does that entail?”
    “Painting and decorating! Yesterday for instance one of my men was painting a wall.”
    “You don’t say?”
    “I do say, and do you know what?”
    “What?”
    “It wasn’t satisfactory, so I had to make him paint the wall again!”
    “I bet that was the highlight of your day.”
    “Well I ask you, what does it take to paint a wall?”
    “A tin of paint and a brush!”
    “Café and a cup of tea?”
    “I’m still going to resign.”
    “You know what we should do don’t you?”
    “Resign?”
    “No exchange jobs, that way we wouldn’t get so bored.”
    “And two teacakes.”
    “What?”
    “With the tea.”
    “Alright, but it’s your turn to pay. What did you say the ice cream flavour is for today?”
    “I didn’t. But I was torn between the idea of mint chock chip or vanilla. So I opted for non-alcoholic rum and raisin!”


Be seeing 

WHY?

   Why poor old Roland Walter Dutton? Because he was expendable that’s why! Why Roland Walter Dutton, after all it’s a bit of a mouthful. Why not just Dutton? And why not use his number 42? Because if they used Dutton’s number and not his name, the television viewer wouldn’t have known who Number 42 was!


Be seeing you

Tuesday, 23 April 2019

Six Rescued From Broken Down Speedboat

    That headline could have been written for The Tally Ho. It brought to mind the scene in ‘Free For All’ when Number 6 was escaping by jet boat, pursued by Number 2 in the helicopter. Also when Number 6 is out on the water waterskiing in ‘It’s Your Funeral’ he must have gone a long way along the coast. However the reality is, the heading “Six Rescued From Broken Down Speedboat” appeared on the BBC digital television news service for Northwest Wales. A boat taking on water as it crossed an area between Caernarfon and Anglesey, the crew of six were rescued by lifeboat.  


Be seeing you

The Manipulation of Such A Community As This

      Number 6 has learned well by the time of ‘Hammer Into Anvil,’ about the manipulation of such a community as this. He knows just what a weasel of a character, is now situated behind the counter of the General Store, that of Number 112 the new shopkeeper. Number 6 knows that he is being watched by the shopkeeper as he listens to the records of Bizet's L'arlesiene, and uses this to his advantage, along with the printed word “Security” which Number 6 has circled on the front page of the Tally Ho. For Number 6 knows that the shopkeeper will instantly telephone Number 2 the moment he leaves the General Store, and watches as he goes running off towards the Green Dome with said LP records and copy of the Tally Ho under his arm.
   Number 2 is also manipulated by Number 6, in the way he does not trust the people around him, and after reading a planted message written out by Number 6 to XO4 and signed D6, arrives at the conclusion that Number 6 is a plant! And so no harm must come to him, otherwise their masters will know!
    Number 6 also works on Number 2's paranoia by placing a message in the personal column of the Tally Ho from Don Quixote "Hay mas mal en el aldea que se suene" which translates into "There is more harm in the village than is dreamt." Number 14 can see Number 6's game, and exactly what he's up to, to undermine 2's authority. But Number 2 fails to listen as no harm must come to Number 6, believing him to be a plant.
   The Supervisor-Number 28 is not above Number 6's manipulative powers, as he reads a birthday greeting to Number 6 all over The Village "May the sun shine on you today and everyday." If only he knew that it wasn't Number 6's birthday. Number 6 took a risk there, because if the Supervisor had known, the game might have been up for him.
    The only man in The Village who might have stopped Number 6, was Number 14, but he was mistrusted by Number 2, although that mistrust is misplaced. And physically Number 14 wasn't up to the job, Number 6 soon despatched him through the French door of his cottage!
   The head of Psychiatrics was also called into the equation, as he was telephoned by Number 6 who isn't mad, but the psychiatrist isn't so sure about Number 2 who becomes very irate when he thinks the psychiatrist is trying to tell Number 2 his job “Do you want to sit in this chair?” And “Don’t tell me what to do!” And the right word in the leader of the Brass band leader’s ear and he's soon called into Number 2's office for interrogation. But the leader of the Brass Band doesn't know anything, he's simply a pawn in Number 6's game. “Oh get out, get out!”
    But let’s face it, Number 6's manipulation of certain members of the community was only made possible due to a weak link in the chain of command, and Number 2's paranoia about a conspiracy within in The Village. This was prevalent from the very beginning of ‘Hammer Into Anvil,’ in Number 2's call for an increase in vigilance, that being The Tally Ho headline, and warning the citizens of the community that “We must constantly be on guard against enemies in our midst.” The Security of the Community is at risk! What, like dissidents and jammers?
   Part of Number 6's manipulation of Number 2 was to be able to use Number 2's 'witch hunt' against him, and thus bring him to his knees. And forcing Number 2 to report his own breakdown, well it was a nice touch, but then Number 6 could hardly report Number 2 to Number 1 himself.......could he?


Be seeing you

WHY?

    It’s insoluble for both man and machine apparently WHY? Why what? Why not? Why you? Why me? Why are any of us here? And yet it’s because not sufficient information accompanied the question, not even the basic facts. That’s why!


Be seeing you

Sunday, 21 April 2019

Our Diminutive Friend

   The thick blast roof doors leading into the domed chamber slid open, the Butler push the breakfast through and down the ramp, across the floor and stopped at a small round table that had risen up through a hole in the floor, at the touch of a button.
    “Ah breakfast. And how are we today my diminutive friend?”
    It was a genuine question, but the Butler wondered if his new master really cared, or merely asked out of politeness. A small round table appeared through a hole in the floor at the press of a button on the control panel of his desk, at the touch of a finger by Number 2. As he laid out the breakfast things on the table he could not help but wonder how long this latest incumbent would last?
    “How many I wonder, how many of my predecessors have sat in that chair?
   Answer there came none.
   “How many men have been broken by it I wonder?” Number 2 was trying to break the silence.
   Again answer there came none, the butler simply carried out his duty of laying out the breakfast things.
    “I expect you have kept a score.”
    Answer came there none.
    “Don’t you ever wonder what happened to them, your ex-masters?”
    Silence.
    “I wonder what you will think of me? I expect you will not mourn my passing. I should hate to be the cause of your grief.”
    The silence remained unbroken.
    “I expect they all fell foul of Number 6 at one time or another” Number 2 pressed a button and the figure of Number 6 in his cottage appeared on the wall screen “do you know how much that man has told us in all this time? Precisely nothing. Well that’s not quite true, he did give away the time of his birth, but we knew that anyway. I am not like any of my predecessors, however I do not intend to fail. What think you of that?”
     The Butler stood and looked at the man, then taking the coffee pot, poured out one hot cup of coffee.
    “Heard that before have we? Well you just wait and see. I have a very different approach to my predecessors. I’m going to bring Number 6 out of himself. So much so he’ll be beside himself! Tell me my diminutive friend, did they make you talk?”
    The Butler offered his new master that cup of coffee.
    Number 2 took the offered cup and saucer “Tell me, did they bring you here, or did you come voluntarily?”
    You could cut the silence with a knife.
    “What did you know to have yourself brought here? Oh this isn’t an answer and question session. I’m not interrogating you.”
    It seems like it to me, but this Number 2 was a number of years too late the Butler thought to himself.
    “You make good coffee I’ll give you that.”
    The Butler bowed at hearing the compliment. Then pushed the breakfast trolley across the floor towards the ramp.
    “Did I say you could go?”
    Oh, it’s going to be like that is it thought the Butler.
    “Oh alright you can go, but before you do, tell me one thing. Can you talk?”
    The Butler turned his head and stared at his master.
    “It’s been an interesting term in office, apart from the mundane administrative meetings about the day to day running of the village. Then there came Number 35.”
    “So these are the latest reports, how is our friend Number 12?”
    “I’m Number 12 sir, its Number 35 the reports concern themselves with.”
    “Yes I am well aware of that, I wasn’t asking about your own welfare.”
    “Oh I see sir. Well as the report states 35 is not responding to treatment.”
    “Why are you talking about this Number 35?”
    “Well that’s why you are here.”
    “I’m here to extract information from Number 6. First of all why did he resign? If he answers that one question all the rest will follow.”
    “It won’t, and with all due respect it’s not all about Number 6 you know.”
    “You mean I’m here to oversee the rehabilitation of this Number 35?”
    “Yes sir. Now If I can bring you up to speed.”
    Number 2 took a few minutes to read the medical report.
    “Yes well, it occurs to me the treatment is taking too long.”
    “That cannot be helped sir. The doctor says it’s best not to rush these things with the use of a cocktail of mind altering drugs. After all if something goes wrong…”
     “Is Number 35 of any importance?”
    “No sir.”
    “Does Number 35 contribute anything to the village and its community?”
    “Not that I am aware sir.”
    “Well then?”
    “He’s homeless,”
    “What?”
    “Number 35 is homeless. He exists outside the village.”
    “How does he manage to do that?”
    “He no longer fits in. His usefulness paid out. He was no longer co-operative. His credit card was all used up. He had torn up his health and welfare card, and his identity card and he gave up his cottage.”
    “Then how does he live?”
    “He has shelter in the woods, and he gets food from the back door of the café.”
    “Well carry on with the treatment.”
    “It was hard enough to get him to take a bath!”
    “This new process has to be perfected before it can be used on Number 9.”
    “Very well Number 2. I’ll inform the doctor.”
    “Good. Oh just one thing you can perhaps help me with.”
    “Yes Number 2.”
    “This identity card.”
    “What about it?”
    “No-one has yet asked to see mine.”
    “I shouldn’t worry Number 2, no-one has ever asked to see mine either. We go by the badge we each wear.”
    “Then why the identity card?”
    “I can’t say sir, I only work in administration.”
At the hospital.
    “As you can see Number 2, the patient has been put in restraints.” The doctor explained “He has already been given two doses of a cocktail of mind altering drugs, and has become more aggressive with each one.”
    “Just the opposite of what you are trying to achieve in fact.”
    “Yes.”
    “Not going well is it?”
    “No. we’ll have to put him in the padded cell for the drugs to wear off. No harm can come to him that way….not physically anyway.”
    The patient began to struggle violently against the restraints “You devils, you can’t damn well do this to me, aghhhhhhhhh. What have you done to me?”
    “You 35 are expendable.”
    “Expendable….me?
    “You contribute nothing to the village and its community. In fact you live outside it.”
    “In the woods where it’s safe. But I know something.”
    “You don’t.”
    “I do, I know aaaaagggggggghhhhhhhh.”
    “Tell us.”
    “I’ll tell you nothing aaggggghhhh.”
    Suddenly the patient collapses. The doctor rushes to the patient’s side.
    “How is he?”
    “Dead, his heart gave out. The final dose of the drug must have been too powerful.”
    “Now we’ll never know what it was he knew.”
    “If he knew anything at all Number 2, he was an outsider, what could he have known, what was there for him to know?”
    “Nothing, nothing at all I expect, but it has proved one thing.”
    “And that is?”
    “The good doctor’s drugs do not work!” Number 2 said, turning and leaving the room.

    “And that’s that. It looks as though I’ll be leaving a whole lot sooner rather than later. What think you of that?”
    The Butler had seen it all before several times over in fact, and would no doubt see it again.
    “I expect you’ll be sorry to see me go.”
    Answer came there none.
    “Well I just hope you make my successor as welcome and comfortable as you have made me feel.”
    The Butler’s stare was cold and unemotional.
    Number 2 moved away from his desk as the Butler stood behind it.
    “Well I don’t expect we’ll be seeing one another again.”
    The gloved hand of Butler passed over the control panel and a finger pressed a button. A round section of the floor dropped through a hole in the floor taking a screaming Number 2 with it. A second press of a button, and the hole closed.
    The Butler calmly cleared away the afternoon tea things, and pushed his trolley across the floor, up the ramp, and through the opening steel doors. Time to put the kettle on, in time for a new arrival.

Be seeing you

Saturday, 20 April 2019

More Village – Tonight Harmony

   I like the way in which ‘Harmony’ begins where ‘Arrival’ left off.
   Having been attacked by the Guardian {I do not write Village Guardian, as the Guardian never appears in the village in this series} at the end of ‘Arrival,’ Six is left unconscious in the desert! Then there is another remembrance, Michael returning to his 
New York apartment with Lucy. While as a boy he is on the beach looking for  his brother, as 16 is in the desert looking for his brother Six!
  Six didn’t recognise 16 as his brother, because his bother was lost at sea on one of their trips to the beach when they were boys. 16 is not Six’s brother. Two gives Six his brother back, and a family. Family is important to Two, its just a pity that Two’s own family is so disjointed!
   Two recommends Six undergo some therapy, The Talking Cure. Unless Six is afraid that Two will mess with his mind, or that Six will discover that he is the problem after all!
   In Palais 2, Two’s residence,11-12 sits on his mother’s bed as she sleeps on, dreaming The Village, and then spies on Two as he feeds his wife, M2, three more pills. And Six helps 16 with a bicycle repair, before he goes to the Clinic for his first therapy session with the brothers 70. For Six The Village is a dark place, his home is not his home, his brother is not his brother, nothing’s real in the village!
   Nice to be seeing a pair of twins in the village, 70, who tried talking things out with Six. Two doesn't believe in this “talking therapy,” but then it's not important for Two to believe, just as long as Six believes!
   Is it really necessary for M2 {2’s wife} to be kept sedated in the village, when its Helen back in New York who is dreaming the village?
   I think it was very clever of Two to give Six a family, through which Two hoped to see Six accept his situation through his brother, and finally settle down. It appears that Six used to work at the bus depot, as a bus driver!
   Harmony I found to be a surreal episode, with a surreal ships anchor in the desert, along with a long abandoned railway halt! It's all to do with the mind isn't it, and that takes some getting my mind round. 16 was never Six's brother, and people go on the bus tours of The Village day after day, seeing the same old thing, described in the same old way. And what about that Solar Cafe, rebuilt, as though the explosion in Arrival never took place. What's more there's something very 1950's about The Village. What with the Bubble car, and the black 
Bedford van. They come for you see, and in broad daylight, just like they came for Six, those men in their white suits and black Bedford van. They come for you, and take you to the clinic. I wonder what they'll do to Six?
    So surreal, with so much happening, I'll really have to watch this episode a second time before I can really get into it. Because I was determined not to give up on the series. And that was a brilliant Village guardian effect, the way it moved though the water, which really wasn't water, but sand.....poor 16!

Breathe in…breathe out…more Village
Be seeing you

Friday, 19 April 2019

Dance of The Dead

    The episode is all about death, even the Telex machine, as the original script describes it, died a death. In the script for ‘Dance of the Dead’ “Number 6 picks up a heavy ashtray and smashes the Telex machine with it. Then Number 6 and Number 240 return to the dance, “leaving Number 2 surrounded with paper rolls and broken springs.”
    In ‘Checkmate’ we are witness to the scene which takes place on-board M. S. Polotska, in which Number 6 smashes a TV screen with a heavy ashtray. But it would clearly have been impossible to destroy a Telex machine with a heavy ashtray, let alone the teleprinter used in the episode. So its no wonder they changed the way Number 6 was to have sabotaged the machine. And at the same time it’s nice to see the idea was not forgotten, and revived for a scene in ‘Checkmate.’

Be seeing you

Sixty Seconds With No.2

    They may call you President, but that’s just another name for a judge, a red Judge, a High Court judge! It would have made better sense had ‘The Girl Who was Death’ been the penultimate episode rather than ‘Once Upon A Time, then you could have been brought straight from the Green Dome to the cavern, instead of having been brought all the way back to The Village. How that would have worked out, had ‘The Girl Who Was Death’ been the penultimate episode, I put forward in my book ‘the Prisoner Dusted Down.’
    Although ‘Fall Out’ is unlike any of the previous 16 ordeals, this was your second bite at the cherry, only two previous Number 2’s were given that privilege before. Oh yes you failed to extract any information from Number 6, but then he knew all the time what you were doing, he was playing with you. You wouldn’t be the first to underestimate Number 6. I don’t know whose idea it was behind ‘The Girl Who Was Death,’ yours, Number 1’s, or someone else’s, but I suppose it was worth a try. Anything is worth a try once, and here you are about to offer Number 6 ultimate power, after having lavished high praise on him.  You did everything but lick the man’s boots!
    It was rather rash of you to make such an offer, but perhaps this is a final manipulation of Number 6. By the way did you ever meet him, Number 1? No I expect not. But it was rather foolish of you to let Number 6 meet Number 1 alone. Did even Number 1 underestimate Number 6 I wonder? It left you holding the baby anyway, chaos and carnage, you lost control and all you could do was to evacuate The Village, you lost it all!


Be seeing you

Wednesday, 17 April 2019

MindGames

    During the second evening in ‘The Schizoid Man’ Number 6 pays a call at 6 Private, he finds Curtis lounging on the bed armed with a gas gun.
    “I’m a very light sleeper, it’s in my file. Five yard range, nerve gas, one squirt you’re paralysed, two squirts you’re dead.”
    Number 6 is in a confused state of mind. He doesn’t seem to know who he is, he’s told he’s Number 12, but in his dreams he’s somebody else but he doesn’t know who. Sometimes in his dreams he’s resigned his job. Why did he resign his job, in his dream? Sometimes Number 6 is here in his dreams, then he comes back.
    “I wonder now who am I?”
    A vicious fight takes place culminating in a confrontation with the Guardian. Both give the password Schizoid Man. But Curtis is nervous, afraid, and perhaps the Guardian senses this, and when Curtis makes a dash for it the Guardian is on him in an instant suffocating him to death!
   Now we come to a discrepancy. What happened between the time Number 6 {in the guise of Curtis} reports his own death to Number 2, and when he goes to see him in his office? Because at the time it is night time, but in between the two scenes there is an establishing daylight shot of the Green Dome. Number 6 is then sent to see Alison because she might have some incite into Number 6’s motivations, and the sun is shining so that must have been sometime during the next morning. As it is there are several hours unaccounted for between the time Rover suffocated Curtis and when Number 6 goes to see Number 2 in his office the next morning.
    “We’re still trying to discover why Rover killed Number 6.”
    “There’s going to be hell to pay.”
    “You’re to return immediately to report your failure.”
    “My failure? You wanted him broken, I’ve broken him, I wasn’t to know he’d go berserk.”
    “Nor was I.”
    “You studied him, you should have known, it was your idea.”
    “That’s a strange thing to say, you know it wasn’t.”
    “You certainly didn’t resist.”
    “Bearing in mind it’s origin no I didn’t…..nor did you.”
    “Recriminations aren’t going to help, it’s a disgrace for us both. When do I leave?”
    “Half an hour.”
    After visiting Alison Number 6 returned to his cottage, changed into civilian clothing and then it was a short taxi ride to the helicopter.
    So during the night, once the supposed dead body of Number 6 had been retrieved, while at the same time they were trying to discover why Rover killed Number 6 {Curtis} what was Number 6 doing all that time?


Be seeing you

The Man Who Wasn’t There!

    Have you seen him?
    Seen who?
    The man who wasn’t there?
    He wasn’t there again today sir.
    So you have seen him!
    No.
    Well how do you know he wasn’t there if you haven’t seen him?
    Well it is well known that the Bell Tower is haunted. Some say they have seen him......................
    Leaning out of the window.
    Yes sir. So you’ve seen him too?!
    I’ve seen him alright. More than that I chased after him!
    You did?
    I just told you I did.
    And what happened?
    He completely disappeared!
    You saw him disappear?
    Well not exactly. I raced round to the door of the Bell Tower, raced up the steps and into the Bell Tower. Then I raced up the steps right to the top of the Bell Tower.
    And as you raced up you met a man upon the stairs.
    No, he wasn’t there. There was no-one!
    Perhaps he was never there!
    But I tell you what there was.  
    Go on sir, what was it?
    A stone statue!
    What at the top of the Bell Tower?
    Yes.
    So it was that which you saw leaning out of one of the windows.
    Of course not.
    Then what is it sir?
    Who in their right minds would haul a bloody great statue up to the top of the Bell Tower?
    Students sir!
    Students, what do you mean students, students of what?
    Speed Learn. It must be University rag week, those students will get up to all kinds of larks during rag week.............I remember one time, oh he’s gone.......perhaps he was never there.


Be seeing you

Monday, 15 April 2019

Many Happy Returns

    By the time of this episode, Number 6, who at night used to keep his wristwatch on the bedside table, has taken to wearing it in bed at night. Also the two day-date calendars in Number 6’s cottage have been removed, after the devices had been so important in ‘The Schizoid Man.’
    Also The Village has a milk deliver service, a milkman driving a milk float, however in this case its likely a garden tractor towing a trailer, probably with a logo on the side such as ‘Pinta Man Is Strong,’ or ‘Drinka Pinta Milk A day, or ‘Village Milk Is Better Milk.’ How do we know there is a milk round operating in The Village? The night before, Number 6 had put his empty milk bottle on the doorstep ready for collection.
    And the loudspeaker which Number 6 couldn’t switch off in ‘Arrival’ and found so annoying during ‘The Chimes of Big Ben’ now he misses it when the music is not there. Because he picks it up and shakes it, in case its broken!
    The café was locked, I wonder if the General Store was locked as well, so that Number 6 had to break in? And after his unceremonious return to The Village, was he made to pay that receipt for 964 work units he wrote on the counter?
   ‘What Are Facts Behind Town Hall?’ Well that’s the headline, but there is no main article to accompany it, not like there is with ‘No.6 Speaks His Mind,’ or ‘Increase Vigilance Call From No.2.’

Be seeing you

A Favourite Scene In Chimes of Big Ben

    “I say……… I say…… what is it?”
    “It’s not finished yet, it doesn’t make sense without the whole group, and there’ll be three pieces.”
    “Entries must be in two weeks tomorrow you know.”
    “I’ll be ready.”
    “Axe, stone chisels, even these are outside the pale of the law you know, technically speaking.”
    “Yes, I’m sure you can wink a blind surveillance eye can’t you.”
    “My dear Number Six I wouldn’t dream of interfering can’t tell you how delighted I am. Can I give you a lift back to the village?”
    “Ah no thanks, I think I’ll carry on while there’s enough light and do a bit more.”
    “Be seeing you.”
    “And you.”
    “Ha, ha, ha.”
    “But not for long!”
    The whole scene lasts less than a minute, but there is plenty in it to amuse. Number 6 thinks he’s being so clever in outwitting Number 2, but although Number 2 asks Number 6 what it is, he knows exactly what 6 is up to! And the hull Number 6 has carved out of the tree trunk, it’s wider than the tree Number 6 felled in the first place! And again the hull, the inner part doesn’t look like wood, it gives the impression of being made of concrete!


Be seeing you

We’ll Be Open In A Minute!

    Waitress “Do you want breakfast?”
    Prisoner “What? Where......where am I?”
    “This is The Village.”
    “The Village?”
    “I’ll see if the coffee’s ready, you do want coffee?”
    “I don’t know what I want!”
    “Well it’s always a little disorientating on the first morning.”
    “Is it? Is there a police station?”
    “Bless me no sir.”
    “Do you have a telephone?”
   “No sir, but there is a phone box around the corner, don’t you want breakfast then?”
    It was but a few paces to the telephone box.
    “Number please?”
    “Operator I’d like to put a telephone call through to
London.”
    “Where sir?”
    “
London, to British Military Intelligence, MI9.”
    “I’m sorry sir, but I can only put through local calls. What is your number sir?”
    The man looks at the telephone handset.
    “Number, I haven’t got a number!”
    “No number, no call!”
    The man crossed from the telephone box to the map of The Village, not that that told him very much at all. There were the woods, the sea, the caves and cliffs, a tower, a few prominent buildings and that was that. He turned away from the wooden map and began to walk. Perhaps there was a bus stop, or better still a small railway station or halt. Then from behind, there was the sound of a car, he turned, stood in the middle of the road, and waved the vehicle down. The driver, a young woman honked the vehicle’s horn, the man stood to the side of the road to allow the white Mini-Moke to pass, instead it stopped beside him.
    “Where to sir?” the driver asked leaning out of the taxi.
    “You’re a taxi?”
    “No sir, I’m the driver.”
    The man climbed into the front seat “Take me to the railway station.”
    “Railway station, there isn’t one.”
    “Well the nearest town then.”
    “Oh I’m sorry sir, but we’re only the local service.”
    “Well take me as far as you can then.”
    After a roundabout way, down this street, along that street, and back again....twice, the taxi ended up back where the journey started.
    “We’re here sir.”
    “Where...where is this?”
    “The Village, you’ve arrived.”
    “But its where I got in the taxi.”
    “That will be two units.”
    The man got out of the taxi “Units?”
    “Credit units, oh well you can pay me later, be seeing you.”
    The taxi sped away down the street, leaving the Prisoner standing there in the road. It was then that a white membraic thing came rolling and bounding along that road towards him. He was mesmerized by the approaching thing, it roared and emitted a noise, a cross between someone breathing through an aqua lung, the sound of a bicycle pump, and a Gregorian chant filling the air. He turned to run but by then it was much too late, the membranic thing was on him, covering his face with its membrane, smothering him. His fingers clawed at the thing smothering his face, he fought for his breath, he screamed and fell back in an unconscious state.................
    “Darling, what is it darling, not that awful nightmare again!”
    “Oh Deborah, it’s the same dream I’ve been having night after night, it’s terrible!”
    “You must see Doctor Schnipps tomorrow.”
    “I have already, he’s sending me to a place to convalesce.” 

    “Do you want breakfast?”
    “What? Where......where am I?”
    “This is the village.”
    “The village?”
    “I’ll see if the coffee’s ready, you do want coffee?”


Be seeing you

Saturday, 13 April 2019

Be Seeing You!

    In the original script for ‘A B and C’ after despatching ‘A’ and his henchmen Number 6 adjusts his bow tie, sniffs and says “Be seeing you.” There’s nothing wrong in that, it’s what happens in the finished episode, in the laboratory with Number 2 watching the action on the wall screen. He wonders “Be seeing you? A village expression?” Why should Number 2 have instantly thought it’s a village expression? It is of course, however the phrase “Be seeing you” has been a common expression widely used throughout the 1940’s, 50’s, 60’s, long before the advent of the village.  And Number 2 should have known that. Also, in the original script, because Number 6 is heard to use that phrase the doctor-Number 14 suggests that the drug is wearing off!
    In the episode Number 14 protests that Number 2 knows she hasn’t had time to prove the drug, “Just get it right, or I’ll see it proved on you” and that’s true to the original script. That is quite a threat on the part of Number 2, however later in the original script he goes further. There is a scene in which the Butler admits Number 14 into Number 2’s office. He offers coffee, but Number 14 has already had some. “Alone?” They discuss the fact that Number 6 picked-up 14 at the Old People’s Home, and went and sat down with her. Number 2 hopes that 6 doesn’t know her, because that would never do. Number 2 suggests that perhaps 14 is the woman of his dreams. As the interview progresses Number 14 admits to 2 that Number 6 “saw” her looking down in the operating theatre. Number 2 then responds with;
   “You’ll have to be more careful my dear, or no-one will ever see you again.”
   I think we all know what Number 2 would have meant by that!

Be seeing you

Dance of The Dead

    Number 6 must suffer from cold feet, no I don’t mean he’s lost his nerve or confidence, just that he sleeps with his socks on! He can  make even the act of putting on his dressing gown appear a gesture of defiance, but he didn’t put his slippers on as he did that morning during ‘The Chimes of Big Ben,’ His dressing gown is the same, but he has a light blue pair of pyjamas this morning. Perhaps his darker pair are in the wash. After all he does have two different blazers, two of everything in fact, one on and one in the wash as the saying goes.
    Number 6 generally shows by the way he puts on his dressing gown that he’s woken up in a bad mood, or is annoyed about something. That morning of ‘The Chimes of Big Ben’ the loudspeaker was getting on his nerves, that and the fact he couldn’t turn it off. So he placed it in the refrigerator, and he instantly felt better having scored a small victory. But this morning Number 6 was annoyed for a different reason. They had conducted an experiment on him before he’d even got out of bed!
   There they are, citizens parading in the piazza, all getting excited about Carnival. Just a minute! As the Butler looked down on this scene, there were two chaps in wet suits, frogmen, they cannot be seen now, what happened to them? I can only think that when no-one was looking they dived into the free sea and escaped the village that way!


Be seeing you

The Pris6ner – Arrival

     This month sees the 9th anniversary of the British screening of THEPRIS6NER and tonight my wife and I begin to watch the mini-series for the 13th time, lucky for some eh!
    True I have not written any blog about his series for quite some time now. That’s because unlike ‘the Prisoner’ there isn’t as much material to work with THEPRIS6
NER. So for myself it’s the enjoyment of watching the series that now counts. And this series isn’t about 6 it’s about 2, what’s more 6 isn’t the problem, he’s the solution, unlike ‘the Prisoner’ which revolves around Number 6.
    I love the series, and thoroughly enjoy watching 2 and his machinations against 6, who attempts to find the 6 inside. Michael {6} whilst working as an
Observer, watching people in New York for Summakor, and selecting certain people whose file he then sends up to the purpose floor of the Company. But then for some reason, perhaps he becomes disillusioned with Summakor and the job he was doing. He resigns his job, and has a unique way of doing it. He doesn’t burst into someone’s office in a show of anger and rage, no upset teacup in its saucer, and broken template, and no letter of resignation. Instead there’s a can of aerosol paint with which he simply sprays the single word RESIGN on the window of his office. And yet I have always thought there something to be wrong in the use of that one word RESIGN, it seems to be more of a suggestion rather than a statement. But then it doesn’t really matter, as 2 never once asked 6 why he resigned. He left that to Lucy to ask that question back in New York in a later episode, whilst deep in his subconscious Michael is a prisoner in the village!
Breathe in breathe out…more village

Be seeing you