The Butler serves without question, each new Number Two who comes along. Although the one exception might very well be that of Mrs Butterworth, who although we do not see her, may very well have brought her house maid, Martha with her to the Village. If that was the case, the Butler would have been unemployed for a while! Because I couldn't see Matha suffering anyone else serving her mistress. But I digress. I have often felt that there is much more than meets the eye with the Butler.
During the prize giving ceremony at the Arts & Crafts Exhibition during the Chimes of Big Ben, it is the Butler who hands out the prizes. So in this case, does this make him more important than No.2?
In Checkmate the Butler makes his way from the Green Dome to the top of the bandstand, from where he follows the moves of the human chessmatch on a chessboard of his own. But on the way there, the Butler has a Top-Hat Administration Official, carrying the chess set for the Butler, who protects him against the sun by carrying aloft an open umbrella, and continues to shade the Butler against the sun with said open umbrella during the whole of the chessmatch. Now the Butler often performs this same tasks for his master No.2, shading him from the sun with an open umbrella. But curiously, here is the Butler receiving the same treatment!
The Butler also helps to officiate at the Appreciation day ceremony, but holding the Great Seal of Office on a crimson cushion.
In A Change of Mind, the Butler can be seen officiating in the Council Chamber at meetings of the Committee with those citizens who have been brought before them for being Unmutual! I cannot imagine what duty the Butler might have at such Committee meetings, save for making the tea in time for a tea-break!
Then comes Once Upon A Time, the Butler is the third occupant of the Embryo Room, where he looks after No.2 and No.6 for the whole week they are sealed in the room together. Making meals, washing up, making beds and the like. But more than this, he also assists the two men during their deliberations. From handling props and costumes, to creating special effects, to dishing out twelve of the best to No.6!
And finally in Fall Out, the Butler actively engages in the violent and bloody revolution. Although one doesn't see any blood, one has to imagine the blood as the armed security men are gunned down, by No.6 and his three confederates. It is curious, that the Butler actually knows that the cage of the Embryo Room has been lowered down onto a trailer of a lorry. That the Butler knows about this Scammell Higwayman Transporter. But what is even more curious is the fact that the Butler can actually drive the lorry. By this I mean the foot pedals of brake, accelerator, and clutch, must have been adapted so that the Butlers short legs can reach the said pedals!
Our diminutive friend may not have involved himself in the social side of the Village, but he was very active within the Village itself, often seen out and about. And somehow I think the Butler knows far more about the actual goings on within, and the working of the Village, than he ever lets on. BCNU