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Wednesday 25 April 2012

"Report to the General..... That's a new one!"

    Is it by accident or intention that the episode ‘The Schizoid Man’ is followed by that of ‘The General, because in ‘The Schizoid Man’ there is mention of the General in the conversation between No.6 and No.2 during their taxi ride to the helicopter outside the Recreation Hall.
    No.6 {in the guise of Curtis} "We won't know until I've reported to the General, will we?"
    No.2 "Report to the General.... that's a new one."
    No.6 "I don't mean report to him personally....."
   So is the General mentioned in that conversation between No.'s 2 and 6, that of the General in the next episode of the same name? It would surely be difficult to say, but the remark made by No2 "Report to the General......that’s a new one." So agents don't report to the General direct, this could be an indication that the General is that of the computer 'the General' of the following episode.
    However, the title of 'the General' is also a rank, after all we are faced with not two Colonels, but three in the time of Prisoner, in ‘The Chimes of Big Ben,’ ‘Many Happy Returns’ and ‘Do Not Forsake Me Oh My Darling,’ all of which are of a very different character. So where would we have come across the General before, save for the Prisoner? Well obviously in certain episodes of ‘Danger Man,’ two of which I can instantly recall, ‘The Black Book’ - General Carteret, who tries to use John Drake for his own ends, by involving him with his brother in-law Sir Noel Blanchard who is being blackmailed.  And in ‘Such Men Are Dangerous’ - the General who is dedicated to discipline, and for the moral authority that derives from that discipline. And sees that most people are honest and simple, but they are by nature incapable of deciding their own destiny{incidentally both General's are played by the same actor}.
    So I suppose you pays your money and you takes your choice. For me, I first thought that both the General mentioned in that conversation between No.2 and No.6 was the same General of the episode ‘The General.’ But that would be too coincidental wouldn't it, and certainly there was no other continuity between the episodes other than the General, because the two episodes were written by two different writers, Terrence Feeley and Joshua Adam respectively.
    And besides the man who No.2 first took to be Curtis was leaving the village, surely by this time, the computer-the General, was being shipped to the village. With the Professor and his wife already having decided to volunteer themselves to the village, would soon be arriving in the village, depending of course on how much time there is to lapse between ‘The Schizoid Man’ and ‘The General.’



  1. Writer Terrence Feeley claimed he was aware of Joshua Adam's script and that his reference of 'The General' was connected.

    BCNU );oB

  2. I have posted this comment on behalf of a friend of mine, Arno, who has had a small problem posting a comment here, as he said I may want to publish my thoughts, too. Well I certainly do.

    How could Number Six have had insight into the hierarchical structures of power of the Village or those responsible for it? In the guise of the now dead (disabled?) Curtis he had to play the role (in their game) that he really knew almost nothing about. So, in his conversation with Number Two on their way to the helicopter it was necessary not saying too much while at the same time keeping his guard up pretending he was one of them. As such anyone would have expected him - as Curtis - to know the formal procedures and what to do, who to report to after the Number Six job, especially in this case that had gone haywire.So, he "invented" the General, the superior rank that he would have thought might exist. That's why Number Two's response remained a little surprised, I always took it for surprise, and baffled. Because he didn't know of any General. He got suspicious. He dropped the name Susan. Number Six didn't know about her being dead. He was uncovered.

    Be seeing you

  3. Hello Steve and Arno,

    When I first watched 'the Prisoner' in 1967 when I was 12 years of age, I naturally assumed that the General mentioned by No.2 in 'The Schizoid Man' is the same as the computer{the General} in the episode of the same title. Otherwise why did Number 2 say "Reort to the General, that's a new one!" That one line has always caused me think that it's not possible to report to the General in person, not if its a computer!