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Sunday 16 June 2019

Watching The Prisoner Series

    Last week I posted a blog entry regarding how it is high time I watched ‘the Prisoner’ again, seeing as how I’m always writing about the series, picturing every day life in the village though my mind’s eye. You may have read the entry I am referring to. I’m always fascinated by the fact we never see No.2 actually being replaced. By the time we see the new No.2 his or her predecessor has already left the village, or has been absorbed back into administration. And yet once, just once we witness No.2’s successor riding a bicycle on his way to take up office in Green Dome. There he goes cycling passed the Labour Exchange just as No.2 is taking the Prisoner inside. You will recall how No.2’s successor is dressed identically to Number 6 we see that when he pays a call on No.2 after being discharged from hospital. Well that cyclist is dressed like No.2. Anyway even if he isn’t the new No.2, it’s who I like to think he is.
    So later this year I intend to watch a screening of the Prisoner, as I said before, and according to the screening order found in my book ‘The Prisoner Dusted Down.’ I worked out that screening order a good few years ago now, and I have never watched the Prisoner in that order. It will be interesting to see how it works out, it will have no effect on Number 6 of course, it will still work out the same for him, but in a slightly different order of events.
    Then I had another thought, to take this a stage further, not to watch an episode once a week over 17 weeks as I usually would, but to watch the17 episodes over a period of 14 months, commencing in October with ‘Arrival.’ Then continuing at intervals with ‘Free For All,’ Dance of the Dead’ and ‘Checkmate.’ Then ‘The Schizoid Man’ February 10th or 11th, and in March ‘Many Happy Returns,’ and ‘Hammer Into Anvil’ at some point in spring. And when it comes to ‘Its Your Funeral’ it is to be watched on a Thursday, because Appreciation Day falls on that day of the week. The remaining episodes to be watched over intervals during the ensuing months, concluding with ‘Fall Out’ in December next year. That’s because the series did have to end in December 1967, and for a very good reason, and is an argument which cannot be denied. The reason why is documented in my book. The series thus covering the 14 months of the Prisoner’s incarceration in the village. Of course watching the series in such a way, although an interesting experiment, viewing the series in this way will of course leave long gaps between some of the episodes, which is only natural and cannot be helped. To my mind those gaps however long or short, go to make up what we are not privy to in ‘the Prisoner.’ In a couple of spaces between episodes in the series could be filled by simply reading the two unused scripts ‘Don’t Get Yourself Killed,’ and ‘The Outsider,’ although to do that might be stretching a point. Describe me as an extremist if you like. But to the best of my knowledge no enthusiast for ‘the Prisoner’ has watched the series in this way.

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