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Friday 31 May 2019

The Therapy Zone

    What was behind the Prisoner known as Number 6’s resignation? What reason could he have had? He was after all engaged to the boss’s daughter, perhaps through that marriage he was looking to better his professional prospects. So what went wrong? He certainly hadn’t told his fiancée Janet Portland of his decision to resign his job, she had no idea. What’s more he was doing a runner out of the country. Chambers had gone, and ‘A’ had made world news when he defected to the other side, and that is perhaps the way Number 6 would have gone had they not got to him first! But really is that any reason to have ZM73 abducted to the village? After all, if you can’t chuck up a job things have come to a pretty pass, to quote Number 2. But I suppose it all depends on what job you did and what you know. Perhaps his resignation had nothing whatsoever to do with it, that Number 6 had been abducted to the village in order to make sure the knowledge inside his head was secure, that he would not talk under any circumstances.
    But they need not have worried, Number 6 was still loyal, he still put a value on the Official Secrets Act he would have had to sign. So, in not extracting the information, Number 6 was in the village to have that knowledge protected. But if that’s the case why did the doctor in ‘Dance of the Dead’ try and extract information, but then again did he? After all he didn’t ask for details, just heading of files he had seen of projects he knew about. It seemed that the doctor was going to an awful lot of trouble for so little. But then they were used to that, so many elaborate plans and schemes, and for what? Precious little as far as I can see! They might have saved themselves a great deal of time and effort. What did it matter why he resigned, I stopped asking myself that question a long time ago. But I’m sure he must have agonized over that decision a long time, and after he had taken it, it must have given him much anguish after he had made it.

Be seeing you

It’s Your Funeral

    It’s a pity Number 6 rolled up his copy of The Tally Ho, as we cannot read the headline, unless it’s a copy used in a previous episode. If so it wouldn’t have done to allow the headline to be read by the viewers. I like the idea of Tally Ho Journal, and Tally Ho weekly.
    I like the way Number 6 and Number 100 pass each other at the door of the Green Dome, and the way 100 gives a casual salute to Number 6 as they pass. But then again its not exactly The Village salute, its more like Number 100 is greeting Number 6 with the hand sign okay.
    The late Fenella Fielding was an integral part of the village, although never seen, she read out the public announcements, special announcements, and the local weather forecast in a cheerful and sultry voice. Much in the same way public address announcements used to be made over the public address system in British holiday camps in the 1960’s. And yet not all of these announcements were as innocent as they might at first seem.
    “Good afternoon everyone, good afternoon, I’ve some exciting news for you. Your citizens council officially proclaims Thursday, the day after tomorrow, as Appreciation Day. The day we pay due honour to those brave and noble men who govern us so wisely. You will all be delighted to hear proceedings will be opened with an address by Number Two himself, and concluded with by the unveiling of a new appreciation monument. There’ll be speeches, thrills, and excitement.”  
    Yes but its propaganda, those brave and noble men who govern them so wisely, thrills and excitement the Appreciation Day ceremony didn’t look all that exciting and thrilling to me. But it does fit if the announcer was making the announcement to the television viewers, “thrills and excitement” regarding the assassination/execution attempt against the retiring Number 2, and would Number 6 overturn it in time!
   A memorial service for Fenella was held yesterday, May 29th, at the actors Church at Covent Garden in London.

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Wednesday 29 May 2019

Where Am I?

    ‘Many Happy Returns’ eventually sees Number 6 washed up on the shore at Beachy Head. He makes his way along the shingle beach, and due to recent cliff erosion, he is able to scramble up the chalky cliff face. From the top of the cliffs Number 6 looks down at the lighthouse below.
    Walking inland, he comes across a man walking his whippet. The man sees the figure of raggedy man, and keeps his distance. Walking away Number 6 follows the man to a gipsy camp site. There he asks the young gipsy woman “Where is this place?”
    It has been said that these are the first words Number 6 speaks, not “Where am I?” but “where is this place?” are quite revealing. Of course Number 6 knows where he is, he must have recognised the the iconic lighthouse at Beachy Head and the white chalky cliffs all along the coast there. So he must realise that he is back in England and so “Where is this place?” must be referring to the gipsy camp.
    When the Prisoner utters those immortal words “Where am I?” during the opening sequence of ‘the Prisoner’ it is because he is disorientated, having just woken up in what he thought to be his own home. But then looking out of the window he finds he isn’t home at all, hence “Where am I?”

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Yellow Alert!

   “Attention Post Fourteen, attention Post Fourteen, yellow alert, yellow alert, yellow alert. Now leaving northern perimeter, Number Six, repeat Number Six.”
    The sound of a siren and the hunt for an escaped prisoner is on.
    “Now approaching, contact imminent, contact imminent.”
    The escaped prisoner has all the beach to run away in, but he is being pursued by two guardians in a Mini-Moke. He weaves about this way and that trying to evade capture. But he cannot outrun the vehicle for long and stumbles to the sand as one guardian leaves the Mini-Moke to tackle the Prisoner. With one guardian down the Prisoner manages to jump aboard the moving vehicle, and then its Prisoner 2 guardians 0! 

   “Northern area, Number Six heading for outer zone in our vehicle, orange alert, orange alert.”
   “Supervisor” said one Observer turning away from his monitor.
   “Yes what is it can’t you see I’m busy!”
   “There’s been an accident on the beach, I think we should send for an ambulance.”
    “Oh they’ll be alright, its Number 6 we have to stop.”
    “Yes I know sir, but there seems to have been a hit and run accident!”
    “Calling all posts, yellow alert, stop a hit and run driver” ordered the Supervisor “suspect vehicle heading towards outer zone. Just a minute, Number Six was heading towards the outer zone!”
    “Yes sir…’re not going to believe this!” reported an Observer.
    “Why, what’s happened?”

    “I don’t know how he managed to do it” said the Observer,” but Number Six appears to have run over himself! Medical staff are on the scene now.”

Be seeing you

Monday 27 May 2019

Visit To The Village Shop!

    “Good day sir.”
    “I’d like um a small note book.” 
    “Very good sir.”
    “Thank you.”
    The shopkeeper turns to the cabinet behind the counter, and takes a number of small notebooks, and lays them out on the counter.
    “There’s a nice little selection there sir.”
    “That’s a nice one, I think I’ll have that.”
    “Will that be all sir?”
    “Ah no.”
                  {No.6 and No.112-the shopkeeper – Hammer Into Anvil}

    Why should No.6 buy a small notebook, when he had one only the day before? Mind you I happen to have a particular fancy for small pocket notebooks, and when I see one I cannot resist purchasing it. In fact one present my wife gave me for my birthday earlier this month was a genuine Victorian note book. It’s a remarkable survivor of its age, and the notebook had hardly been used, at least one page, perhaps two pages, and they along with a third page had been torn out. Perhaps the previous owner didn’t want anyone reading what had been written in the note book, as there are no indentations of writing on the fourth Page.  You will recall No.6 tearing out the next page of his note pad having written the missive to XO4, and not wanting anyone discovering what he had written. Pity he didn’t tear off the third page!
    This is my Victorian notebook. It might have been a Police detective’s notebook rather than that of a gentleman, its complete with white metal mechanical or propelling pencil. 

  So we know No.6 had a notebook because he was supposed to have written something down in it when he was supposed to have been timing the l’Arlesienne records. I suppose he had to purchase something, he could hardly go into the General Store and just buy a Cuckoo clock, that would have been suspicious! Well it wasn’t so much the Cuckoo clock, but the fact that he wanted a specific one. One which came in a hinged box, and we do know why he wanted such a box as that.
Be seeing you


Village Life!

    “What kind of morning is it?”
    “What kind of morning do you think it is?”
    “One for avoiding Committee meetings.”
    “I didn’t think you attended any Committee meetings.”
    “Oh I used to, in the beginning.”
    “Do you know what I’m thinking of doing?”
    “No, but do tell.”
    “Being co-opted onto the town council.”
    “Oh you wouldn’t want that.”
    “Why not, I was just thinking of bettering my position.”
    “Being co-opted onto the town council wouldn’t better your position, believe me. Besides it would be a waste of time you’re asking.”
    “Because you have to have been a Number 2 first.”
    “Where do you think Number 2’s go after they have each completed their term in office?”
    “Is that like asking where do flies go in the winter time?”
    “I always thought they go back where they came from.”
    “Some do, most do, but some are co-opted onto the town council.”
    “Well what’s wrong in that?”
    “They are nothing more than brainwashed imbeciles!”
    “How do you know that?”
    “I’ve seen them going into the council chamber. They never talk, they have no emotions, I don’t think they can think, their brains having been taken away.”
    “Zombies, yes, like the living dead!”
    “You know it’s not too bad being a Top Hat official of administration.”
    “See, you feel better already now that the idea of promotion has been lifted from your shoulders.”
    “I tell you what, I’ll treat you to breakfast at the café.”
    “Is the café open yet?”
    “Bound to be, I can smell coffee.”
    “Good, breakfast will set me up for this morning’s undertaking.”
    “What’s on the agenda?”

Be seeing you

Saturday 25 May 2019

1 And 6

    So No.6 and No.1 had been one and the same all the time! Number 1 being No.6’s own worst enemy as he has been described, his other self like Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. In other words it’s all in the mind! Well it would be had it not been for the physical confrontation between 1 and 6, and many would say that was played out in the Prisoner’s mind. If that’s the case then, everything which takes place in ‘Fall Out’ happens in No.6’s subconscious. In fact everything which takes place in the village could well be all in No.6’s mind! And yet I find myself dissatisfied with that explanation, it dismisses much that takes place in the village, things that No.6 could not possibly know, unless he dreamt the whole thing up. Well that’s one theory of course.
    After the physical confrontation between No. 6 and No. 1, 1 climbs up into the nose cone of the rocket, and 6 seals him in, then sets the countdown for the launching of the rocket. Panic ensues, the Judge orders the evacuation of the village. There is a vicious fire fight, citizens running this way and that to get away, a Mini-Moke speeds through the village. Helicopters take off from all corners of the village. While No.6 and his three confederates are escaping down the tunnel in a low-loader transporter. Then as the lorry crashes through the steel gates at the far end of the tunnel, the rocket blasts-off out of its silo. In other words No.6 and No.1 escape the village at precisely the same moment. What happens then? Well we know what physically happens to No.6, but what of No.1? Is his fate sealed in the nose cone of that rocket, or might there be another release for him, something akin to ‘The Man Who Haunted Himself.’
    Harold Pelham a straight-laced man, stuffy, and regimented in his ways, whilst driving his Rover P5b suddenly allows his other self to take the wheel of a Lamborghini Islero 400s {
GTS}. However Pelham loses control and crashes his car. And it is while lying on the operating table that two heartbeats register on the heart monitor, and it is then when Pelham’s other self is released. And from that moment on there are two Harold Pelhams in the world, the other one being casual in both appearance and attitude, both living the same life! Eventually there is a confrontation between the two Pelhams, the one runs off chased by the other. A car chase ensues, resulting in Pelham crashing his car, and at that moment, the moment of death there are two heartbeats, as the two Pelham’s become whole again.
   We know that No. 6 eventually returns to
London, but what of Number 1? Is it not probable that he came to grief in some way, trapped in the nosecone of the rocket. Either through lack of oxygen, or having attained a low orbit eventually that orbit deteriorated, and the rocket either burned up on re-entry or impacted with the ground. Whichever, the result for No. 1 would be death, and upon his death might 1 have been absorbed back into 6, or 6 into 1, either way making him whole once more.
    If it is to be accepted that No.6 and No.1 are the two separate physical entities of the same man, what might have caused this separation, and when did it take place? It must have happened before the Prisoner’s abduction to the village. Could it have been when ZM73, for want of a better name, went and resigned his job? In ‘A B and C’ we witness the anguish pattern of No.6 as his act of handing in his resignation is played out over and over again on the wall screen. Perhaps the anguish he suffered as a result of the decision he made, caused the physical separation of the two sides of his physique.

Be seeing you

A Favourite Scene In Free For All

    Number 6 having decided to stand for office in the local elections, presumably as an independent, might be guilty of being carried away in the moment. The thing with Number 6 is he had nothing else to do with his time. He said he might as well while he was waiting, waiting for what, to escape, or for something to happen? Perhaps he thought that standing for election he might be able to make something happen. His opening speech was a good one, and the only one in which the candidate would be afforded the opportunity to use his own words, save perhaps for his closing speech. But in any case after Number 6 has been interviewed and had his photograph taken by Numbers 113 and 113b, and finally having been given a copy of the latest edition of The Tally Ho with the already written article, he must have realised the election had been rigged. In fact it was a bit of a giveaway, if not a shock to Number 6, when the placards with his face on them were revealed. But realizing the election was rigged, presumably against him, he pressed on regardless. But really he had no chance of doing otherwise. He had to see the election through, being carried along not only by the enthusiasm of the electorate, but also by the use of drugs. Not enough to bring harm to Number 6, well they mustn’t damage the tissue, just the right proportions to see him through the election. Number 6 the new Number 2! They knew he would make the most of his opportunities, much good it did him. The thing with Number 6 is, once he starts something he has to see it through, simply because he has no choice!

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Thursday 23 May 2019

Quote For The Day

    “Why do you care?”
                   {Number 2 – Once Upon A time}
That’s a very good question. Care about the Prisoner, do I care about the Prisoner? It’s a series I have found fascinating for nearly 52 years, or rather it’s been an obsession, just as it has been for many others. It gets under your skin, I cannot leave it alone, or should that be the other way around? As for Number 6, I’m not sure I care for him or not. I like the way he maintains his inner self, the way he combats Number 2’s machinations and always comes out whole, even after having a change of mind. And because of that he seems too good to be true somehow. Nothing affects him, well not until the death of Number 2 at the end of the ordeal in the Embryo Room. As for The Village, to me it doesn’t matter which sides runs it. Nor does it really matter who Number 1 is, I would have rather it not have been Number 6 because there was no pay-off. No retribution. Oh yes Number 1 was eventually sealed in that nose cone of the rocket, but both 6 and 1 escaped the village at precisely the same moment. And after having returned to London, having made the discovery of the identity of Number 1, who else could he blame but himself. He could have gone running back to his former colleagues, but then he’d done that twice already and look where that got him.........back in the village!

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In The Village!

   Why do you think Number 6 did that, went to the window and looked down? Perhaps he was just making sure, remembering how a former colleague, Cobb, also committed suicide by jumping out of a hospital window. Well he was supposed to have, but of course we the viewer know differently Number 6 didn’t. Perhaps Number 6 had doubts about suicides, but there was no-way he could check Cobb’s death.
    Number 6 accused Number 2 of murdering Number 73, but Number 2 hadn’t laid a hand on the woman, yes he interrogated her, caused her mental torture. But Number 73 didn’t leap out of bed and out of the window until Number 6 burst into the room. Maybe 73 simply took her chance in the confusion to leap to her death. She had attempted suicide before by slashing her wrists, and so would have been likely to try again when the opportunity arose. I suppose the open window proved too much of an opportunity for her. Which begs the question why was the window left open in the first place, knowing 73’s suicidal tendencies?

Be seeing you 

Tuesday 21 May 2019

Two Prisoner References!

    This morning I had occasion to go out to purchase some new plants, when I do that I cannot help but bring to mind that nice little scene in ‘Arrival’ when No.6 encounters the gardener.

    “Careful sir, they’re new plants.”
   My wife asked me to pick up some oranges while I was about it, and not to give any away to strange looking women! This was alluding to a scene towards the end of ‘Darling,’ in THEPRIS6NER when Michael had gone to get oranges for Lucy to have for breakfast. He drops one of the oranges on the sidewalk, and a young woman who is obviously living on the streets, picks it up and bites into the fruit. Michael feels sorry for her and hands her another orange.
   Then earlier this afternoon when I was planting the new plants, Petunias, I thought to myself if that No.6 comes along wanting a word, he’ll have to wait!

Be seeing you

The Schizoid Man

      Number 6 has been reported dead! Number 2 is outraged, there’s going to be hell to pay, and it looks very much like its going to be him that pays! Curtis wants to know when he’s leaving, but Number 2 wants him to go as see the girl Alison as they think she may have had some incite into Number 6’s motivations. But there’s nothing Alison can tell Curtis, so he goes on his way. First to 6 Private where he changes into civilian attire, and collects his suitcase, then Number 2 calls for him and its just a quick taxi ride to the helicopter, and a quick flip to the landing stage. During the taxi ride Number 2 attempts to talk to Curtis about the proposition he put to him, but Curtis has had no time to think about it. Curtis is in on edge, perhaps it’s the job. The helicopter stands waiting in front of the Recreation Hall, as does Alison who tells him that what she did to Number 6 was a betrayal, and she wanted him to know that if she had a second chance she wouldn’t do it again. But there are no second chances, well there are for the lucky ones.
    “I say old chap.”
    “Yes what is it?”
    “I don’t know what I was thinking. I cannot possibly let you leave looking like that.”
    “What do you mean, looking like what?”
    “Well Number 6, obviously. You’ll have to look like yourself before I can allow you to leave the village.”
    “Don’t be ridiculous!”
    “We’ll amend you slightly, dye your hair black again, but we’ll have to wait until you’ve grown your moustache again.”
    “You must be crazy!”
    “Or you can spend the rest of your life here impersonating Number 6!”
    “You’ll never get away with that!”
    “You don’t fancy that Number 6?”
    “How did you know?”
    “Curtis doesn’t have a bruised fingernail!”

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One Day!

   One day in The Village is very much like any other, except the day when........Well it all began with Number 2 being in a bad mood. Apparently someone, we never did find out who, had dumped a lot of old wood and empty oil drums on the quayside. Annoyed by this, Number 2 wanted to know who had left them there, and ordered an immediate inquiry, and for the wood and oil drums to be cleared up. But no-one seemed to have the least idea how the wood and oil drums came to be on the quayside. Also the General Store had been broken into, and a number of tinned goods had been taken, along with a camera, a loudspeaker, and a copy of The Tally Ho. Also the shopkeeper reported that an IOU had been written in chalk on the counter in the shop, and signed No.6? And there was the other thing, no-one had seen Number 6 all that day, what’s more the empty milk bottle on his doorstep had not been collected, also no milk had been delivered. Not that day, nor any subsequent day for almost a month! So where was Number 6? He wasn’t to be seen anywhere. Days, then weeks went by and still no sign of him. But the strange thing is no-one seemed concerned, certainly not Number 2. So life went on much the same, minus Number 6. Jammers were under the impression that he had hidden himself away, to make it look as though he had escaped the confines of The Village. In effect they thought he was jamming. Whilst others believed that he had actually managed to escape, even to the extent of discussing how he managed it. Then one day just as the village day was about to begin, a man turned up, a man wearing a flying suit. His flying helmet was later found on the beach, and Number 6 had come amongst them again.

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Sunday 19 May 2019

Collectors Corner!

    This photograph which I shall call ‘A’ taken just as Number 6 is being discharged from the hospital, I, like so many other people purchased this from the Prisoner shop in the late 1980’s. There is nothing remarkable about it. The next photograph is the same but different as you can see.
   This photograph ‘B’ is as I purchased it, I forget where from. It might have been from the Black Cat bookshop in Leicester amid a large quantity of Prisoner material, back in the early 1990’s. Or it might have been from a Memorabilia event at the NEC at Birmingham. Apart from the photograph being the mirror image of the one above, there is another difference. Although the two photographs are the same size, the one below has been taken slightly more to the left, or right if you mirror the photograph!

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I’m Gone Gone Away!

   “You were with us, then you went and gone!”
    He was first the Kid, a mute gunslinger in what could be the first virtual reality experience. This technique devised by Number 8 {the Kid} to be used to break Number 6. Ply the subject with hallucinatory drugs, put him in a dangerous environment, talk to him through microphones. Give him love, take it away and he’ll break if only in his mind. It might have worked before, but it didn’t with Number 6. It was difficult to control the situation, and even Number 8 allowed himself to get carried away with the role playing when he revisited the scene of the crime. Having first strangled Cathy in the Saloon because of his fixation with her, and her rejection of him, this psychotic killer then went and strangled Number 22, under the impression she was Cathy, to death, then took the easy way out and committed suicide!
    He turned up next as the Cockney fashion photographer, “Ere what’s your game Sherlock Holmes? I’ll spread your nose all over your face. I’ll bust you up and down this fairground, you’ll never pick up your teeth with a broken arm. I’ll tear off your leg and beat you over the head. I do not think for one moment that the photographer is Number 8, it’s most likely that Number 6 made up the characters in story of ‘The Girl Who Was Death’ using people with whom he had previous experience, and so exaggerating their characters and putting them in the most eccentric of situations. Well all but one, but to realize that you would have to read my book ‘The Prisoner Dusted Down.’
    However Number 8 could be Number 48, with a 4 in front of the 8, and resuscitated like Number 2. But that’s improbable, yet not impossible however improbable. To my mind Number 48 is nothing more than a contrivance with which to pad out the conclusion to the Prisoner,’ as was forcing the return of “late” Number 2. Just what had Number 48 done to see himself brought to book in ‘Fall Out?’ Why was he brought to the village in the first place? Perhaps he was at one time respectable, but once finding himself in the village he “dropped out.” It is suggested by the President that Number 48 had been “with them” but that he went and gone. Probably meaning he “dropped out,” or died in an act of suicide but then had been resuscitated as previously suggested. Oh there’s no proof of any of this, its mere speculation on my part. The Photographer, Number 8, and Number 48 may well be just as they seem, three entirely different characters. It’s just that if I can, I like to tie characters together if it’s at all possible, and in some cases it is. Does that make it right? No, but it makes for an interesting exercise all the same.

Be seeing you

Friday 17 May 2019

Tonight THEPRIS6NER - Checkmate

   “He’s the one, Six is the one!”               
   Tonight is the final episode of THEPRIS6NER, the village is expanding "More Village" is 2's new motto. But he still having problems with Six, who seems to choose death, when everyone else in the village chooses life. 2 has belief in the village, and yet the situation has all gone wrong for him and his wife M2.
    Everyone is going happily about their daily business in the village, while Six is dying, and the only way to save himself is to accept the village when Two hands it over to him. 313 is also in trouble as Sarah impinges on 313's life in the village. 313 doesn’t want to leave the village, and accepts 2’s offer, as does Six, but for 313's sake. This leaves Two free to escape the village, in a very dramatic exploding hand grenade!
   But before that can happen the Village has to be handed over to Two's successor, and not only the Village, but also Summakor. And it appears that Six is the one, and taking Two's lead 147 leads the people in choosing Six as the One! "We want Six, Six is the One. We want Six, Six is the One. We want Six, Six is the One.' So seeing that there has never been a Number One, perhaps this 6 is the first Number 1!
    Newcomers arrive on a bus. Six asks a woman where they've come from? "We just got off the bus." Six asks where she got on the bus? "The village" the young woman replies. Six informers her that this is the village, they've arrived. "Isn't that just the wildest thing?" The young woman might be excited by the prospect, but her son's expression tells a different story!
 On the purpose Floor of Summakor, a woman {whom Michael recognises as the winking woman} tells Michael a car is waiting for him to take him for his appointment with Mr. Curtis.
    Six is doubled over in pain. He receives a summon to the Clinic, where 313 diagnoses him. “What is it?” six asks a shocked 313.
    Surveying The Village expansion, 2 tells 11-12 he will one day inherit The Village, and that it will stay in the family for generations.
    Six confronts two with his certificate for dying. 2 tells Six that village death offers clarity of choice: This is life, or no life.
    313 continues to be haunted with visions of herself from another life. She wants to find a way to help Six. 2 Tells her there is something she can do, but that she must not let the girl from the Other Place control her.
    At the cemetery, 11-12 places 909’s grave. Six challengers 11-12 to give him the information he needs to get out of the village. 11-12 asserts that his mother cares for him. “Only a mother can destroy every ounce of hope in you,” Six says.
    Six collapses in front of 147, who offers to take Six to someone who may be able to cure him.
    Michael is escorted to Mr. Curtis’s car, where he recognises the driver as the village’s 147. En route, the driver explains how he used to be a very angry person, but Mr. Curtis helped him turn his life around.
    147 takes Six toy a village prophet, and tells Six that deliverance is coming – they just need to wait. Waiting is giving up, says six.
    Six approaches 11-12, who is drinking alone. Six asks him about his mother and the pills. He asks 11-12 to leave the village with him. “The village is best for me,” 11-12 whispers.
    In New York, Michael meets Mr. Curtis and Helen – Two and M2 in the village. Helen is in a dreamlike state. Mr. Curtis explains that the village is an experiment happening in Helen’s mind. She sacrificed herself so that “broken” people could have better lives.
    In Palais 2, 11-12 enters his parent’ bedroom and smothers M2 to death.
    In the Clinic, Two taunts a dying Six with the details of his upcoming funeral. 313 listens from afar.
    2 returns home to discover M2 dead and 11-12 nowhere to be found. 2 and the dogs search the Go Inside Bar, and find 11-12 has hanged himself. 2 carries his son out, and places his body in state.
    Holes begin to open in the village.
    2 visits 147, who he knows can empathise with the pain of losing a child. 2 tells 147 there is something he can do to end the pain, but 147 must help. When the moment arrives he must call out “Six is the one.”
    Mr. Curtis takes Michael into the city and shows him the positive effects the village has had on suffering people. Michael claims Mr. Curtis doesn’t have the right to help people without their consent. Mr. Curtis offers Michael an opportunity to help him with the village experiment, and gives him a pass to the Purpose Floor of Summakor. Before Michael can respond, they arrive at a church.
    The effects of village death begin to overtake Six. 2 concedes the plan was not enough to crack him. But he says, “Village death was not my last throw,”
    Two has decided Six’s desire to do the “right thing” will force him to assimilate to the village. He makes a deal with 313: She will give herself to Six to save him.
    In the Clinic, two confronts Six with Rover. Unable to face his deepest fear, six runs away.
    Villagers gather for 11-12’s funeral. Six attends, his fever from death miraculously gone. 2 confesses to the crowd that 11-12’s death was a suicide and that they are all Prisoners. A child throws a stone that hits 2 in the face. 2 tells the crowd to look to Six for answers.147 steps forward and proclaims “Six is the one,” inciting the crowd to join him.
    2 tells Six the only way to shut the holes is for a dreamer to take M2’s place. 313 steps forward and takes one of M2’s pills.
    At the church in New York, Mr. Curtis introduces Michael to Sarah – 313 in the village. She is nearly delusional, suffering from the affliction of childhood abuse. Mr. Curtis tells Michael he can save her. Michael takes Sarah’s hand, catching her as she collapses.
    In the village, 2 places a grenade in his mouth: “Six, I give you the village,” he says, pulling the pin. Two explodes!
    Mr. Curtis returns home to Helen, and finds her well. “Don’t look back,” he tells his wife.
    On the Purpose Floor, Michael takes a seat as the new head of Summakor.
    In the village, Six and a sedated 313 look out on the village. “It took me all this time to see how beautiful it is,” Six says. “It has to be possible to do this the right way-make a good Village.” 313 sheds a single tear.

   And so it is that this final episode of THEPRIS6NER, it and the series as a whole, has gone by all too quickly for my own personal liking. In the final scene, the new 2 sits with 313/Sarah on a sand dune in the desert. He says that is has to be possible to do it the right way, to make a good Village. He thinks he could do it, He thinks he has to try, whatever the cost. But I don't think 313 shares that thought, as she sheds a tear, but for who, herself, or for Six who dreams of making a good village? Seeing as its Sarah, 313's abused counterpart in New York who will have to dream the village, I don't give much for Six's chances!

    With Checkmate 2's own story is building to a climax...............through the sense of guilt of what he has done, within his family, within the regime of the village, and the sense of his own failing. 2 set out to create a certain kind of thing, and he looks at what he's got, and he doubts himself. You see Michael is the one - he can make it work........but as so often proved in history, the road to hell is paved with good intentions. I mean it's perhaps not a bad idea to rule the world, just as long as you are a good King. In the village, there is a man who fought the very idea of the village, and hated the nature of being a prisoner, who eventually becomes the King of the Prison!
    It is said that you cannot die in a dream, that at the moment of death you wake up just in time. Not so for M2 who is suffocated to death by her son 11-12. What it must have been like for Helen dreaming the village in New York, who experienced her own death in her subconscious. The thing about Helen is, that she couldn’t wake up, seeing as she was heavily sedated at the time. But then why couldn’t Helen manipulate the dream, so that 11-12 doesn’t suffocate M2 to death? Well according to Bill Gallagher, Helen dreams the village, but has no control over the actions of it’s citizens!
   As for 147, well he finally becomes a pawn in 2’s game............and the time does finally arrive when 147 has to anoint Six, and for the populous to follow 147's lead, for Six is the One!
   As for 313.......she accepts the situation of her circumstances, and takes the pills from Six on the understanding that it will be only until Six, who has become the new Two, can find a better way, or to find a new Two for............The Village.

   As I understand it, script writer Bill Gallagher said that there are clues one can follow through the series, which will all come together, to be resolved in the final episode, and all the questions will be answered, I’m not at all sure they were.
    I think the series as a whole has some of the disturbing qualities of the original series which ended or began with ‘Fall Out,’ depending on how you look at it. However with THEPRIS6NER there is no hint of a “vicious circle.”
The moment Helen in New York woke and stopped dreaming, the village, its entire community disappeared into oblivion! Leaving the new Two {the former Six} and 313 to begin again from scratch, to build a new and better village together.
    And there we are, and if we’re not there, we must be somewhere out there getting on a bus to take us to the village. And yet we get on the bus in the village, so we must already be there brilliant! 
However as it is “more village” means putting the DVD in the machine again!
Breathe in.....Breathe Out.....Village life goes on!
Be seeing you

Echoes of The Prisoner!

    Quite recently my wife and I sat watching an episode of ‘Man In A Suitcase - Somebody Loses, Somebody….Wins?’
   McGill takes a job in East Germany posing as a buyer of photographic equipment. In Dresden he encounters a former female associate Ruth Klinger who worked for Section K but apparently has defected to the East Germany. The secret police set her a loyalty test involving her old flame McGill who is trying to track down the missing Johann Liedkind, who is part of a neo-Nazi revivalist group, when McGill discovers this, it places him in a dangerous situation. By betraying McGill Ruth attempts to convince the East German authorities that she's a double-agent. At the same time McGill is faced with a dilemma. How can he escape and save Ruth with him, without blowing her cover? Someone at Pinewood studios must have been having a laugh, by design, or is it merely a coincidence? 
    In one scene McGill and Ruth are taking a walk in a park together, Ruth Klinger is wearing a light blue dress, and carrying a bunch of primroses! This was quite startling, because where have we seen that before?  My wife and I looked at each other with incredulity. We instantly thought of the scene in ‘A Change of Mind’ when Number 86 is caught picking Primroses in the woods by Number 6. Alright the dresses are not the same design, the dress worn by Number 86 was Angela Brown’s own, but the colours are identical.  
    It must be a coincidence surely, but a strange coincidence nevertheless. I think we have to allow such a thing, because if not that means………well as far as I can ascertain the only person to have worked on both ‘A Change of Mind’ and ‘Somebody Loses, Somebody….Wins?’ was casting director Rose Tobias-Shaw.

Be seeing you

Caught on Camera!

    In a completely unconvincing part of the woods, Number 86 high on drugs and having apparently “dropped out” has found “flower power.” Number 6 comes along and catches her picking Primroses. 
    As I
have never been really convinced by that part of the woods, I’ve been even less convinced by those flowers. Half a dozen Primrose looking plants positioned on an unconvincing grass covered rocky bank, Number 86 simply picks those up plants as an assembled posy rather then spend time picking the flowers. Because when you pick real Primroses you pick the small flowers individually, not the whole plant, however we’ll pass on that small point, because the plants 86 picks do make a nice bouquet

Be seeing you

Wednesday 15 May 2019

Tomorrow Is Another Day

    It had not gone well. It hadn’t gone well at all. In fact, it was an absolute failure, and they do not like failure here! It should have been so simple, the extraction of some information. Well it’s what we do here in the village, we gather information, we extract it, or protect it depending on which side the subject is on. All we wanted to know was why did she resign? There she was, well-established in a job deep in the Civil Service, then what does she go and do? She hands in her resignation.
    “All we wanted to know was why did she resign?”
    “I know that.”
    “Wasn’t much to ask. One of well-established agents deep undercover, and suddenly it all goes pear shaped!”
    “How was I to know she had become so unstable?”
    “You weren’t, no-one knew. It wasn’t in her file.”
    “I wonder what made her do it. You don’t think she suddenly developed a conscience do you?
    “Bit late for that even if she had.”
    “Yes. I suppose we’ll never know now. I wasn’t too hard on her, you don’t think that?”
    “Doesn’t matter what I think.”
    “No, you’ll be alright no matter what.”
    “That’s administration for you, serving each Number 2 with equal loyalty, and without question.”
    “You think I’ll not be here tomorrow?”
    “It wouldn’t surprise me if your successor has been lined up already.”
    “I wish him the best of luck!”
    “Might be a she.”
    “And you?”
    “Oh tomorrow is another day for me. You know it could have turned out so differently.”
    “You mean had I kept closer surveillance on her?”
    “Observers are not infallible. I know they are supposed to see and hear everything. But really what chance have they, there being only seven observers on duty at any one time!”
    The next day the new Number 2 took up his position in the sanctum of the Green Dome. A tall, lean middle aged man with silver hair had been given a second chance, as Number 2 he carried the can for the previous failure. But was told that under no circumstances would a second failure be tolerated. Number 2’s task was a simple one, to oversee an escape from the village!

    The steel doors leading into the dome’s chamber of Number 2’s office slid open, and Number 14 stepped through and down the ramp. The steel doors sliding closed behind him with a resounding clang.
    “You’re still with us then?”
    “Well you know how it is, you can’t keep a good man down.”
    “So what is it this time?”
    “Simple, we allow Number 9 to escape, then we let him run unhindered.”
    “And how far do we let 9 run?”
    “If he can make it a “home run” well all the better.”
    “We are going to let Number 9 escape?”
    “By winking a blind surveillance eye 14, understood?”
    “Do you mind if I check?”
    “Are you questioning my authority 14?”
    “No sir.”
    “It sounds like it to me. Tonight don’t drug the tap water in 9 Private, and make sure the French window of his cottage is left unsecured.”
    “Yes sir.”
    “I’ll be seeing you later on in the Control Room”

    It was a little after curfew, Number 9 was restless probably because he had not been given his nightcap, he wouldn’t have drunk it even if he had. From the wardrobe he produced a haversack, filled with as many supplies as he would be able to carry. For him the only way out of the village was through the woods and across open countryside.
    The night was pitch black, there were surprisingly few lights on as a darkened figure flitted about. Across the street, across the square, along a narrow path. Then left along a cobbled path, passed the statue of Hercules, then up a set of steps, through wrought iron gates, and right along the street until the figure turned left up steps taking to the back of a cottage. It was then he made a dash for the woods.
    Meanwhile in the Control room.
    “You are sure about this Number 2?” the Supervisor asked.
    “Of course. He’ll head for the far side of the woods and the countryside beyond.”
    “And if he doesn’t?
    “There’s no other direction for him to take.”
    “I’m surprised at you being party to this 14.”
    “I’m not, I’m just an impartial observer.”
    “There’s no such thing” the Supervisor told him.
    “Now that 9 is finally on his way, we can all relax.”
    “Can we?” asked the Supervisor not bothering to hide the concern in his voice.
    “Don’t worry, for you tomorrow is another day.”
    It had been a long and arduous journey over land. The escaped Prisoner was thirsty, hungry, and exhausted. He had walked by day, resting where he could by night. He had crossed mile after mile of open countryside, until there came a road. A small group of gypsies had given him food and a ride in one of their caravans for a good deal of the way. But now he was once again on his own, and walking again. He kept to the road, trying to thumb a lift. Several cars passed him, probably they didn’t want to pick up a raggedy vagrant. For his hair was matted, his clothes dirty and torn. He was about to leave the road, and ready himself to spend the night under a hedge, his supper being the two sandwiches the gypsy woman made for him, when out of the night a big bright light. A lorry was bearing down on him, it almost ran him down. But the lorry stopped, and the escaped Prisoner ran and jumped over the tailgate and into the back of the lorry. He banged on the side to alert the driver and the lorry began to move. There were a large number of cardboard boxes in the lorry all marked “import.” The man settled himself down to sleep, covering himself with some old sacking.
    When he woke the lorry was no longer moving. He crawled out from beneath the sacks, moving slowly and peered out from over the tailgate. Suddenly he leapt out of the back of the lorry, and stood frozen to the spot. There was a group of men dressed in dove grey overalls, they were being supervised by a man in a piped jacket. The man  stood there rooted to the spot.
    “Whatever do you think you’re doing. Where have you come from?” Number 138 demanded to know.
    “I……I’m back, I don’t believe it!”
    “I think we’d better get Number 2.”

    “Sorry to disturb you at such a time Number 2.”
    “Well what is it, what’s the matter?”
    Number 14 handed 2 a small box.
    “The aspirins have arrived, I thought you might like to take a couple for your headache.”
    “I don’t have a headache.”
    “Number 9 is back.”
    “I beg your pardon.”
    “The lorry bringing the milk, ice cream, the potatoes, and the aspirins also had a hidden cargo……..Number 9!”

Number 9 was escorted into Number 2’s office by two burly set men. A chair rose up out through a hole in the floor, and was roughly seated in it.
    “What were you doing in the back of that lorry Number 9?” Number 2 asked from the comfort of his chair.
    “I was escaping!”
    “To where?”
    “Anywhere that isn’t here.”
    “And yet here you are.”
    “You, you had me brought me back here!”
    “I? I didn’t want you back here, because you are supposed to be in London!”
    “It would appear that there’s been an error of judgement.”
    “You had the lorry driver bring me back here to the village.”
    “How did I manage that do you suppose? I’m sorry to have to tell you, but the mistake was yours.”
    “How do you make that out?”
    “It’s a sorry state of affairs for both of us really, and I suppose it was a mistake anyone could have made. You see the lorry was on its way here as part of a regular delivery run.”
Tomorrow is another day, and with it a new arrival in the village to take up office in the Green Dome………

Be seeing you

Monday 13 May 2019

What's That No.6 Up To?

    In a scene from ‘Hammer Into Anvil’ at 11:30 Number 6 tells the shopkeeper that he’d like to hear l’Arlesienne.
   Shopkeeper “Ah the Davier recording beautiful, there’s no-one to touch him on Bizet, it takes a Frenchman.”
   Number 6 “I’d like to hear them all.”
   “I beg your pardon sir?”
   “How many copies of it have you got?”
   “Six.”              {Bloggers Note: It would have to be that number!}

   “May I have them?”
   “If you insist sir, but they’re all the same.”
   “I doubt it.”
   “Yes sir.”
   The shopkeeper begins to gather the records from the racks.
    “Thank you very much, and the others, all of them.”
    “Yes sir.”
    Number 6 then takes the records along with his copy of The Tally Ho over to the record booth, and puts the first record on the turntable, and as he begins to listen he appears to be timing it. After a few seconds he takes the record off the turntable and replaces it with another copy of the record and again times the first few seconds of l’Arlesienne. It is now that the shopkeeper begins to take notice and stands watching Number 6’s behaviour from behind the counter, his curiosity aroused. A third record is then placed on the turntable, and again Number 6 times it, only this time he takes a pen and notebook from a pocket in his blazer and writes something down, aware that he is being observed by the shopkeeper. Number 6 doesn’t purchase a copy of the record as he claims it’s not a satisfactory recording, while the shopkeeper thought it was first class. But then it’s only a matter of taste.
    Of course all the records are the same, they sound identical, there’s no variation in tempo, all the sleeves are the same, so what was Number 6 listening for, what makes one of those records different? Nothing, they are as they appear to be, all the same. And Number 6 might have kept looking at his watch as the shopkeeper observed, but that doesn’t necessarily mean he was actually timing them. And what might Number 6 have written in that notebook of his, an addition to his shopping list perhaps, a memorandum to remind himself to do something later in the day.  The shopkeeper said Number 6 wrote something on a piece of paper, which indicates he didn’t see the notebook, and if he didn’t see the note book it was because Number 6 had his back turned to him. So how could the shopkeeper have seen Number 6 writing something down on any piece of paper? As it is there isn’t any proof that Number 6 actually wrote anything down! There is certainly no discernable message hidden in the music, or in the playing grooves, and it appears that Number 2’s close examination of the six records showed that no massage had been etched onto the run out groove. Because over the years it has been a trend to have hidden messages etched on the run off groove. This is no better demonstrated than on ‘the Prisoner’ soundtrack record {the BAMCARUSO label}.
    The message etched on side one “Be seeing you - on side two” and on side 2, “I am not a number….!!” along with “Hip Hip Hooray.” To discern the messages the record does have to be held in the light at a certain angle. I didn’t know about messages myself, not until I was told about them back in the late 1980’s.

Be seeing you