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Friday 18 November 2016

A Mish-Mash of Affairs!

    The thing about ‘Do Not Forsake Me Oh My Darling’ is, it’s a muddle, a mish-mash. For example, irrespective of whether or not the Prisoner is John Drake, ZM73 was certainly in the same line of work. He would have to accept and adapt instantly to unforeseen changes in circumstances without giving anything away to a third party. In this case ZM73’s mind might be in a turmoil, but he doesn’t panic. He goes to see a man who might be able to help him, his boss Sir Charles Portland, if he can prove his identity!
    All unpleasant memories of The Village over the past year had been erased from the Prisoner’s mind, so that mentally his mind had been regressed back to the day he was due to hand in his letter of resignation. So that when ZM73, for want of a better name, woke up on the recliner in his study it was simply the next day, and not a year later. He checked the time by his wristwatch but that in itself should have told him that something wasn’t quite right. After all that’s not his wrist and hand he sees, he should have recognized that. Then he looks out of the window {we’ll forget the fact that he’s looking out on the wrong scene outside} he looks at Janet’s photograph and thinks to himself of her birthday present hoping she likes it. Then going over to the writing bureau he looks at the ‘Things To Do Today’ pad, and thinks to himself about what’s on for the day, and treats it like any other day, except it isn’t. He’s meant to be resigning his job, surely he should have had that on his mind and not the servicing of his car, the cancellation of a dental appointment, and if he was about to resign his job he wouldn’t have been contemplating having a long lunch with his boss and future father-in-law Sir Charles Portland. Because he was supposed to be about to take a big step that would have changed all that, his job gone and his immediate future with it, his relationship with Sir Charles wrecked, and his engagement with Janet placed in jeopardy. She might well have reacted badly by giving him back his ring, as she wanted a husband that could give her security, not a man who was about to throw all that away.
   And there’s the question of the service of his Lotus Seven. Can’t he carry out a simple service of the car himself, such as greasing nipples, changing the oil, checking the break fluid, cleaning and resetting the spark plugs making sure they are set at the right gauge. Checking and topping up the levels of distilled water in the battery, break pads, tyre pressure and tread? After all he does know every nut, bolt, and cog having built the Lotus with his own hands, and to have been able to do that, he must have had access to a garage. So why pay someone else to carry out a service of the car? Because the way he says “Car service” does suggest the Lotus is being taken to a garage. Perhaps it was a question of time, after all there was also that dental appointment in the morning which he thought to cancel, as he was supposed to be having a long lunch with Sir Charles.
   And yet any plans, and appointments made by ZM73 all went by the board the moment he saw the Colonel’s face staring back at him in the mirror, and having done so, all those unpleasant memories of The Village suddenly came flooding back. That in turn calls into question the strength and effectiveness of the technique used to remove all such unpleasant memories from the subject’s mind in the Amnesia Room. Because in ZM73’s case he seems to have been able to recall those memories of The Village quite easily!
   For the first time in the series, Number 6 had a dependency on The Village, because if he could not return there, his mind would have had to have remained in a body perhaps not to his liking, the Colonel’s!
   And then there’s the question of the Colonel. The last time Number 6 saw the Colonel it was in ‘Many Happy Returns just before he set out on a search for The Village. Are we to suppose that there has been yet another change in Colonel, after all there have been two different Colonels already. If so how did Number 6 know of this latest incarnation when he’s been a prisoner in The Village, when he woke up and said that Professor Seltzman’s mind now occupied a body perhaps not to his liking….the Colonels? If Number 6 wasn’t unconscious at the time, did he encounter the Colonel in the Amnesia Room, or when they about to undergo the mind transference? Certainly Sir Charles Portland made no reference about the Colonel, he didn’t seem to know who he was when ZM73 went to see him in the guise of the Colonel. In fact no reference is made to the Colonel at all outside of The Village!

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