Escape is not possible, I realise that. No.6, No.2, you me, we’re all “lifers!”
I say it’s Pat McGoohan’s fault, if he hadn’t quit ‘Danger Man,’ or had gone on to be James Bond…….mind you I suppose McGoohan would have played James Bond in much the same way as he portrayed John Drake. So what would the difference have been? There wouldn’t be any bloody difference that’s what!
‘The Prisoner, according to Pat McGoohan was not a children’s television series, and yet as I have said before, there is much childishness in it. So is it any wonder that ‘the Prisoner’ captivated the imagination of children over the years and decades? That having been the case, Patrick McGoohan seems to have been the Pied Piper of his time. He called the tune, and we danced. What’s more Pat McGoohan called the tune, and led us all a merry dance. Not quite a dance of the dead. He may not have taken our souls, but he stole our minds right enough. I suppose he would say that he gave us something in return, in showing what it was to be an individual. To question, and not simply accept things as they are. And so we did, you and I are as individual as the other people who are reading this right now, and all around the world, never mind the Prisoner fan living in the next street. He did teach us to question, I’ve spent the best part of my life studying and questioning ‘the Prisoner,’ but somehow I don’t think that’s what Pat Macgoohan meant. Oh yes I know, there are many others like me, perhaps you who are reading this are one of them. But you have other things in your life. I have other interests, gardening, reading, football, snooker, Formula 1 motor racing. Ghost stories, Jacques Tati films. American Wild West films, Spaghetti Westerns. But at the end of the day, ‘the Prisoner’ has become my life, or rather my life has been leading up to this. That I have become the Prisoner! Or perhaps I presume too much!
So what am I complaining about? Who’s complaining? I’m spending my time doing what I like to do, doing what I do best. Writing about the most surreal television series of its day. What’s more there has been nothing quite like it since. Well there have been a number of “Prisoneresque” television series which have attempted to emulate ‘the Prisoner’ in some shape or form, such as ’Lost,’ which I have never seen. And of course there is THEPRIS6NER 2009 series, which reinvented ‘the Prisoner, having reinterpreted many of the original series ideas. Not to mention a number of Hollywood features films such as ‘The Truman Show,’ even ‘Inception’ is PRIS6NERESQUE!
Is there any other television series like ‘the Prisoner,’ which you have taken apart, dismantled, dissected, and finally put back together, and you still do not know what it is all about? Can you be sure of the interpretations you have placed on certain aspects of the series? Can you be one hundred percent sure that all the theories you have arrived at can be the truth of the matter, or anywhere near the truth? And if so, why are you right, and someone else is wrong? In other words we don’t like to be contradicted in our theorising do we? But at the same time we have to be open minded, which I try to be, unless I come across someone who is seeing material which is not in ‘the Prisoner’ and was never meant to be there in the first place. I have had my differences with other fans of the series over the years, that’s only to be expected. But even if I do not agree with everything fans of ‘the Prisoner formulate about the series, I will defend their right to be able to say it! Because isn’t that partly what ‘the Prisoner’ advocates, the freedom of free speech? To have the right to question those about us? If you see a situation you are not happy about, question it ,and those who caused that situation, and get them to do something about it in order to put it right. Because it’s all very well being a fan of ’the Prisoner,’ if you do not heed what Patrick McGoohan, through the Prisoner,’ is trying to tell you. It’s not always possible to be a “free man” is a world controlled by numbers. It’s not easy to be able to resign your job, well you can, but only when you’re sure you have another job to go to in this day and age. But you can do other things the Prisoner advocates, speak out when you see something which goes against all things that are right. One can question, even if you do not get the answers. Of course one cannot behave exactly like the Prisoner-No.6, there is no such thing as escape, only from the one prison to another. It is said that death is a form of escape, but for myself I’m not willing to take that route none too soon. Because I may know from what I would be escaping, but not to where!
I’ll be seeing you