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Saturday 23 August 2014

Colony Three -The Village!

    John Drake infiltrates Colony Three as Robert Fuller! An agent MR58 working in SEKCJA.1 {section.1} amended Fuller’s file with a picture of Drake. Fuller had been recruited to Colony Three like so many before him. A total of 750 people have defected to Colony Three somewhere on the Russian Steppes since the war. Why do they? It’s Drake’s job to find out, so John Drake takes Robert Fuller’s place. But eventually Drake runs into trouble, and manages to send out an automatic radio message via a radio transmitter hidden in his electric razor. The message eventually reaches Admiral Hobbs who gives the order to contact MR58 in SECKJA.1 {Section. 1} to get Drake out of Colony Three.
   Now that’s a curious thing as there is something familiar about that code word, name, call it what you will, MR85. In ‘Hammer Into Anvil’ Number 6 addresses a note to XO4, and signs it D6. In ‘Do Not Forsake Me Oh My Darling’ the code names ZM73, PR12 and Potter’s code name XB4 are used. Coincidence? Perhaps. Another coincidence is that British military Intelligence agent John Drake infiltrates Colony Three in order to find out what happens to all the people who are disappearing? He finds out that Colony Three is a school for spies, people who are not only trained in all kinds of intelligence work, but also on how to be English. So that when the agents leave Colony Three to take up positions in
England, they are English, in act, thought, word, and deed.
   While in Colony Three Drake is put to work as a bureaucrat working in the Citizens Advice Bureau, there’s probably one in your town. There he advises the citizens of Hamden New Town on their rights. Helping them deal with officialdom, income tax, official documents, any problems they may have. He types up each of their names and details on an index card, and clandestinely takes a photograph of each agent using a camera hidden in his typewriter, every time he hits the ; key!
    The Prisoner is loyal, dedicated to his work, is this a man who suddenly walks out? But he didn’t walk out, he resigned. But what if that resignation was all part of a plan, a plan that would eventually see him abducted to The Village? Yes it is known that the Prisoner was doing a runner, having returned home to collect two suitcases, his passport, and airline ticket. But appearances have to be maintained. After all it is what he would have done in this situation. And that goes for the day of his arrival. Like John Drake once in Colony Three, the Prisoner is given a tour of The Village. It is also suggested that the Prisoner might be given a position of authority, working in the Citizen’s Advice Bureau perhaps!  
   The Prisoner then went on to show normal shock symptoms, followed by the accepted behavioural pattern. That he should be unco-operative, aggressive and even try and escape. By vehicle across the beach, and later by helicopter.
   However this time there’s no such contact in Section 1, no way for Number 6 to get a message out of The Village. So Number 6 must resort to measures of his own, with the help of Nadia Rakovsky. Together they return to
London, to be more exact to an office in London that the Prisoner knows very well. The Colonel sets about de-briefing the Prisoner. But it all goes wrong. The Prisoner isn’t in London at all, but back in The Village. It would seem that Number 6 passed the test, he proved that he wouldn’t talk, no matter what they did to him!
    The next few months go hard for Number 6, yet he’s learning more and more about operating techniques in The Village. Then one day he wakes to discover The Village deserted. This is the chance he’s been waiting for. Eventually after a twenty-five day sea voyage The Prisoner finds himself back in
London. He returns home, and after being fed and watered, washed, shaved, and given a new suit of clothes, the Prisoner goes to see the Colonel. A debriefing session takes place between the Prisoner having returned from The Village, with the Colonel, and Thorpe. The Prisoner reports to them everything he knows about The Village, backed up with photographic evidence. The Colonel is satisfied enough to check out his ex-colleagues report. Then with the dice loaded in the Prisoner’s favour, and the aid of a Naval Commander and RAF Group Captain, with maps and charts, and having calculated the distance made by the Prisoner during his twenty-five days at sea, a search area of some 1,750 square miles is calculated. And so the Prisoner is back on the trail of The Village, guess what, he soon finds himself back in it!
   Perhaps Number 2 got it right. Perhaps the Prisoner-Number 6 is a plant, sent to The Village by their masters, to check on security, to check on Number 2. After all Number 1 didn’t intervene on Number 2’s behalf.
    The next time the Prisoner finds himself outside The Village, he’s once more back in
London. Perhaps now he can approach Sir Charles Portland and tell him about what has happened to him in the year he has been away. But there’s a snag, he’s not himself! He has a terrible time trying to convince Sir Charles Portland that he’s ZM73. You would think that the Prisoner would use his real name while with Sir Charles, but no, he insists on using that code name ZM73, just as a colleague uses PR12, and Potter XB4.
    I know that a point has been stretched with suggesting that the Prisoner-Number 6 is a plant in The Village, sent there as John Drake was sent to Colony Three. But as a friend of mine once said to me, if you can’t stretch a point, what can you do? In any case I am not the first to stretch this point. What’s more there are parallels between ‘The Prisoner’ and ‘Danger Man,’ ‘Colony Three.’ The first is the use of the same style of code name. The second is that Colony Three is referred to as The Village by Donovan the director of Colony Three, who said to
Richardson that he wants Fuller off their hands. Fuller is suspected of working for the Americans or the British, although Donovan thinks that’s doubtful. But if something happened to Fuller in The Village, Section 1 would be down to investigate. They’ll come down in force and they’ll never leave. Apparently Section 1 has always resented Colony Three’s independence. They’ve been trying to get hold of the Colony Three project since it started. It seems that even in Soviet Intelligence there is jealousy between departments. And thirdly no-one recruited to work in Colony Three is ever allowed to leave. Anyone who goes to work in Colony Three ceases to exist to the outside world. Much in the same way that Number 6 ceases to exist to the outside world, because he’s supposed to have died in an accident at sea! Robert Fuller {John Drake} having been recalled by Section 1, was the first person recruited to work there, ever to leave. The first person that we see who is able to leave The Village is, Cobb. But why the need for the elaborate plan of Cobb’s supposed suicide, and the staging of his funeral? Was that simply for the Prisoner’s benefit, so that to him Cobb would be dead? What did that matter? Cobb was leaving The Village anyway, the Prisoner wouldn’t have known where Cobb had gone, or why. But I suppose that would have been enough, that they didn’t want the Prisoner to know Cobb had left. He would surely have asked about Cobb after returning to the ward after his medical. I guess Cobb’s suicide merely stopped the Prisoner from asking questions. The only way for the Prisoner to leave The Village would be to tell them who he was, if he could have got Number 2 to believe him. And no better time for that than when he had broken Number 2 in ’Hammer Into Anvil.’ Number 6 could have reported Number 2’s breakdown in control to Number 1 himself. Well he could if only Number 6 had been a plant. And even if he was, which side would he be working for? In any case, how could they possibly allow Number 6 to leave with all the knowledge he had gained about The Village. He had already reported its existence twice, but thankfully to the right people. Next time they may not be quite so lucky!

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