It's a ridiculous telephone when you look at it. However it is the hotline to Number 1, and vice versa to those who are second only to 1.
At the beginning of the episode ‘A B and C,’ Number 2, pictured here, has a nervous look on his
face as the telephone begins to bleep.
"Number 2 here. Yes Sir, I am doing my best. He's very
difficult. I know it's important.......... He's no ordinary person Sir, but if
I had a free hand........ I know Sir yes I'm not indispensable."
Later, after Number 6 had paid Number 2 a visit, he is again put
under pressure by Number 1 via the hotline. "Yes Sir, within two days. You
have my word....... Yes Sir, I realise my future is at stake. Two days, I
Yet despite his word and guarantee, it all goes pear shaped for
Number 2, and it is as the oversized red telephone begins to bleep in the
laboratory, he knows what is coming. In fact Number 2 had half expected the
telephone to start bleeping after the failure with 'B', but now with the
complete failure to discover the reason behind Number 6's resignation, Number 2's
fate is sealed.
In ‘Hammer into
Anvil’ Number 2 is another to have access to this ridiculous red
telephone. When Number 2 receives a telephone call from Number 1 asking if
everything is alright Number 2 replies “Yes sir, everything’s under control…….
No sir, no problems……. Assistance? No, no sir I can manage. Yes sir of
course….be seeing you.” What was it that brought about that telephone call? Had
Number 1 seen Number 2 threaten Number 6 with the tip of the sword, or perhaps
it was his striking Number 6 across the face which brought about that telephone
call from Number 1.
In the end both these Number 2’s have
something else in common than their having to use this ridiculous telephone.
They both get the sack by it, even though one of them reports himself as a
breakdown in control!
Actually, this telephone thing sitting on No.2's desk must have
been a constant reminder of Number 1's ever presence, being just a phone call
away. I mean no-one is free of observation. Take Number 2 of ‘A B and C’ for
example. There he was, having learned of his failure to Number 6's success,
almost instantly the oversized red telephone began to bleep. So Number 1 must
surely have been watching to have learned of Number 2's failure so
Be seeing you