There are a couple of ways of looking at the conclusion to 'the Prisoner, an action adventure episode in which the evil Number 1 is brought down along with his base the Village. Or as a allegory, or a fable. And yet, there is a parallel to be drawn between 'Fall out' and the novel by Alexander Dumas 'The Man In The Iron Mask.'
Basically the story goes that Louis is the King of France, and a prisoner in the Bastille is Philippe his identical twin brother, but to disguise his identity Philippe has been forced to wear an iron mask! Louis is a cruel King who cares little for his people, so a plot is hatched to replace Louis and place Philippe on the throne of France. Thus Philippe is freed from the Bastille, and taught to impersonate his twin brother Louis, who is eventually deposed and taken to the Bastille to take the place of Philippe, and Louis becomes The Man In the Iron Mask, while Philippe sits on the throne of France as King. But basically after Louis was deposed, things remained the same, except France enjoyed a much milder and kinder King.
Now it appears to me that the President, and the Delegates of the Assembly have found the twin brother of Number 1, and for reasons of their own, intended to depose Number 1 with Number 6. I wonder what Number 1 would have felt about that? It strikes me that he would not have gone quietly, he woud have gone kicking and screaming, just like Louis. And what might have happened to Number 1, had Number 6 played ball? In all probability, like Louis who took the place of Philippe in the Bastille forced to wear an iron mask, Number 1 might very well have been forced to take the place of Number 6 as a prisoner in the Village! "I am not a number, I am a free man!"
But there is another scenario in 'the Prisoner' which could be paralleled with 'The Man In The Ron Mask, that of 'The Schizoid Man.' I know that Number 12 was supposed to have died, that it was Number 6 who reported that he was dead, that Rover got him. But did Number 6 actually check the body? Did he just take it for granted that Rover had suffocated Number 12 to death? What might they have done with Curtis/Number 12 had he lived? Might not they have kept him in the Village, a Prisoner? After all could they have trusted Curtis enough to allow him to leave the Village? A man with his face? Might they not have put Curtis in his cottage '12 private,' a cell, and keep him there? I have already suggested in previous blog articles that the President had used Curtis/Number 12 one more time in the final manipulation of Number 6 in 'Fall Out,' to bring him, supposedly, face to face with himself! But Number 1/Curtis is as mad as a Hatter. The effect of months of imposed isolation from the rest of the Village, self-confinement in fact, had had a detrimental affect on Curtis' mind!
Well in the latter I maybe stretching a point, although it's interesting enough. But in the former, it is always possible that the President and the Delegates of the Assembly had had enough of Number 1, and seeing his twin in the Village, set about putting Number 6 through a series of ordeals in order to test the man, and see if he was worthy of the offer of ultimate power, thus deposing Number 1 with Number 6, whether Number 1 liked it or not!
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