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Wednesday 29 April 2020

Tales From The Village

    “How is it you’ve never escaped?” It was a question I had not asked myself, well not for quite a while. I suppose it’s something you get used to, the village, it’s easy to get used to something when you live it every day. And eventually you learn to accept and settle down, once you’ve learned there’s no way out! And when you think about it there’s only so many ways one can attempt to escape, especially if one is limited by the lack of skills, such as navigation, or the inability to pilot a helicopter for example. It’s easy to know what not to try, the difficult part is to come up with a plan that’s got have more than half a chance of succeeding! Oh there was one chap who organized an escape group, each member of the group had a different skill that he or she could bring to the escape plan. It still failed, well it came down to a matter of trust, someone had to be in charge you see, and that was the person who came up with the plan in the first place. He had to give the orders to see that the plan was carried out correctly, that nothing was left to chance. But it was that air of authority that let the plan down, a question of trust you see. But then no plan is full-proof, and that’s mostly why escape plans fail! But it’s true that everyone tries to escape when their spirit’s broken and some see it as the duty of every prisoner to try and escape at some point. One or two have escaped but they have always been brought back, although not always alive. It’s the Guardian you see it’s always on patrol, and you can’t outrun it, and if you fight back when it attacks you, the damn things like a balloon, it offers no resistance! Someone attempted to prick it with a darning needle thinking it would burst like a balloon. But it didn’t.
     Anyway I’m too old now for escape, I’m happy to live out my days here in the Old People’s Home. All my needs are catered for, and there’s always a game of chess on offer from the General, or if the weather’s set fair the Admiral and I go sailing aboard the boat, although he assures me she good in any weather. There he is now, “Ahoy Admiral” I shout and wave. “Anyway I’ve got to go now; the Admiral will be weighing the anchor in a few minutes.”
    And off he went the silly old fool, if he thought anyone could go sailing in a stone boat then they are off their heads! But then the madness began, with the sails set and the Admiral at the wheel, the stone boat broke away from the quayside and sailed away into the estuary. No-one could believe their eyes as we stood staring at the vessel which had been part of the quay now sailing away out towards the sea. The silver grey helicopter took off and gave chase; it circled the vessel like a gnat in the vain hope of stopping or slowing the vessel which was now in the mouth of the estuary with the wide open sea ahead of it. A pair of speed boats also set off in pursuit, and there was a sudden disturbance in the water as a white sphere shot through the surface and went skimming across the sea towards the approaching the Stone Boat. But what could it possibly do? What happened next you might ask, as the helicopter continued to circle, the two speed boats finally catching up and then…..and then……….I woke up!

Be seeing you

Sunday 26 April 2020

Who Is This Arthur When He’s At Home?

    Who is Arthur? Dutton mentions Arthur and the Colonel in an opening scene of ‘Dance of the Dead,’ when the doctor No.40 is attempting to gain information from No.6 and using No.42-Roland Walter Dutton in the process, who is speaking to No.6 on the telephone about it being a bore. There having been a suspected security leak. Apparently its not Dutton asking, its the Committee, who want a breakdown  on everything they know, No.6, me {Dutton} Arthur, the Colonel. All the files he's seen, the projects he knows about, just headings, not details.
   So I suppose Arthur is an assistant to the Colonel, in the same way as both Fortheringay during ‘The Chimes of Big Ben,’ Thorpe in ‘Many Happy Returns,’ and Potter of ‘The Girl Who Was Death.’ He was  possibly the most ineffective of the three, seeing as he was present at the untimely murder of the Colonel, but somehow unable to prevent it!
   Of course Arthur mentioned by Dutton could always have been “Dear Arthur,” Mrs Butterworth's deceased husband. After all he was in the Navy, and British Intelligence recruited from the Navy.  

 Be seeing you.

Fall Out!

    Is that an order Number One? It sounds like an order, a military order, fall out and nothing to do with radiation fallout! Unless you mean there is to be a falling out, but amongst whom? The citizens, surely not, then.....oh, a falling out amongst friends! You, No.2, No.6, is that it? Perhaps through Fall Out you mean to destroy everything because of No. 6. Is this where it all begins, by falling out? No.6 like No.48 was with us then he went and gone, is that it? If there is no Fall Out there cannot be an ending, and no ending there is no beginning, without Fall Out none of what we know can take place! Fall Out is the making of the Prisoner!

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Thursday 23 April 2020

Watching The Prisoner - A Change of Mind

                               “They’re right of course, quite right!”
    When it comes to physical exercise just as Kosho links ‘Hammer Into Anvil’ with ‘It’s Your Funeral,’ or possibly the other way around whichever way you like to look at it, No.6’s homemade gymnasium apparatus in the woods links ‘It’s Your Funeral’ with ‘A Change of Mind.’
    To my mind No.6’s home made gymnasium apparatus is first established in ‘A Change of Mind,’ or at least at a time before this episode, that’s why I place this episode before ‘Its Your Funeral’ in this slightly amended screening order to the one in my book ‘The Prisoner Dusted Down.’ And I imagine it is from ‘A Change of Mind’ that the film footage is taken of No.6 working out in his own private gym which appears in the daily prognosis report on No.6 in ‘It’s Your Funeral.’ Certainly the prognosis report would be looking back at his previous activities, and that in itself would be enough to place ‘A Change of Mind’ prior to ‘It’s Your Funeral.’ For my book I attempted to get as close as I could to a definitive screening order of ‘the Prisoner,’ and yet having amended that screening order slightly for my watching the series now, its plain to see that there can be no definitive screening order, simply on the grounds that there are far too many imponderables! Perhaps it would be simpler to stick to either the screening order or the production order of ‘the Prisoner,’ but even those throw up their own inaccuracies!
    There is a saying, “Birds of a feather flock together,” and yet alone in the woods No.6 has set himself apart from the community of the village, preferring his own company to that of others.
    No. 6 appears to be training for the big break, and yet escape hasn’t been on No. 6’s mind for a long time. He’s simply keeping himself in training, not wanting himself to get out of condition. It’s a little antisocial of him perhaps. But we have no idea why No.6 took it into his head to build himself a private gym in the woods. The doctor-No.10 said after No.6’s medical that he was fit for any contingency, but didn’t have anything specific in mind at the time. Did he mean another escape attempt, or perhaps something much closer to home, such as the process known as Social Instant Conversion?! At least Number 6 didn’t end up in the Aversion Therapy Room. When No.6 asked the “lobo” man if he’d been inside that room, the reply was not in there, that he was one of the lucky ones! Lucky to be one of those citizens who have been domesticated or pacified by having their aggressive frontal lobes isolated! A barbaric operation which the charming doctor-No.86 cleaned up, no blood, no barbarism, only the use of sound waves, all very neat and tidy. And I thought the two doctors No.40 of ‘Dance of the Dead’ and No.23 in ‘Checkmate’ were bad enough!
     They’re right of course, quite right, Your Community needs You! It’s just a pity the welfare Committee of this community doesn’t stretch to taking more care of the individual, and stop No.2 from carrying out what is nothing more than a witch hunt!
    I like the way No.6 returns to his cottage to find No.2 sat nibbling on a shortcake biscuit taken from a glass bowl of such biscuits. Make yourself at home why don’t you!
        “All charmingly domestic…I think I’d like some tea.” Certain episodes have a theme running through them, this episode has tea for its theme.
    No.6 cannot stand girls who can’t make a decent cup of tea, and gives No.86 a lesson in brewing a proper cup of tea. He can also boil eggs for his breakfast when push comes to shove, unless he has someone like Nadia to boil them for him! In fact for breakfast in ‘Arrival’ the Prisoner had two fried eggs with bacon, along with toast and marmalade, tea with lemon, yet touches none of it. I expect he wasn’t hungry. No.6 only appears to enjoy a hearty breakfast when it’s brought to him on a tray by a maid. And yet since that privilege had been rescinded he just has two boiled eggs for breakfast and in the day a ham sandwich, as seen in both ‘Hammer Into Anvil’ and ‘Do Not Forsake Me Oh My Darling.’ Perhaps it’s often the way with bachelors who cannot be bothered to cook for themselves. Other meals could be eaten out at the café.
    There is something compelling about the way the big man nibbles daintily on a shortcake biscuit! It puts me in mind of the time when Number 6 nibbles on his ice cream cone in ‘Once Upon A Time. The question is, does Number 6 keep shortcake biscuits in his kitchen to which Number 2 helped himself, or did Number 2 bring it with him? If he likes a nibble from time to time, he might keep one or two biscuits in his pocket, I have known it done.
   At the end of the day, it’s No.86 who is the weak link in the chain of command, stupid woman! She allowed herself to be out manoeuvred by No.6, and seeing as how there is nothing he cannot do, No.6 hypnotises 86 and uses her as a pawn against No.2. So that when the village clock strikes four…………
    “Number 2 is unmutual, unmutual, social conversion for Number 2 the unmutual.”
    “Number 86 has a confession, that Number 2 is unmutual.”
    “Look at him, an unmutual who desires to deceive you all. Your welfare committee is a tool of those who wish to possess your minds!”
   This stirred up the crowd, No.2 doesn’t like the look of the now angry mob, and makes a run for the sanctuary of the Green Dome, hope he made it!

Be seeing you

Tuesday 21 April 2020

The Prisoner Virtual Convention 2020

    With the cancellation of the Prisoner Convention, and quite rightly so, which was to have been held this weekend Friday 24th –Sunday 26th, a few enterprising fans of ‘the Prisoner have got together in order to organise a virtual convention, taking place online from this Friday 24th to Sunday 26th April 2020.

Click on the link below to visit the Prisoner Virtual Convention 2020

   Where you can also put forward your own ideas and submit material for the event, or simply sit back and enjoy.
   I shall be looking in from time to time myself, and trust the virtual Con will be a huge success, and who knows, perhaps the first of many.

Be seeing you

Monday 20 April 2020

Tales From The Village

      “Don’t bring that wet in here!”
    “Sorry sir, I can’t help it, it’s raining outside.”
    “That’s no excuse!”
    No.22 rolled up his wet umbrella and handed it to the bald-headed diminutive butler who stood beside him in the open doorway. The butler took hold of the wet umbrella and rolled his eyes then turned and went back to the foyer where he dropped said umbrella on the floor. No.22, a tall fair-haired man stepped down the ramp, the pair of steel doors closing firmly behind him.
    No.2 sat watching the wall screen and the rain pouring down outside.
    “Fine weather for ducks” 22 remarked “We’ve had to cancel the regular brass band concert today.”
    On the wall screen they could see the paths and roads on the village had been turned into rivers by the torrential rain. The pool in the Piazza was overflowing. No-one was promenading, the café had no customers, the gardeners were in the workshop drinking tea. 
    “I like this weather” No.2 remarked.
    “You do sir?”
    “It makes our job that much easier, it keeps the citizens in their cottages.”
    “No-one would attempt an escape in this weather.”
    “I didn’t mean that. People out and about, promenading around the Piazza, spending time sunbathing, enjoying themselves on the beach. Going to folk music concerts, art seminars. There was an exhibition of mime and entertainment only last week, I mean what are people here for, this isn’t a holiday resort it’s a prison and people aren’t here to enjoy themselves, they are here to be punished for the crimes they have committed. After all you don’t see me out and about enjoying myself.”
    “By no means sir, no-one could accuse you of that.”
    “Good, just so long as that’s clearly understood.”
    “How was your round of golf the other day?”
    “That wasn’t leisure; a good deal of work can be completed on the golf course!”
    “If you say so sir.”
    “I do say so! Now why are you here?”
    “You sent for me sir.”
    “I didn’t send for you.”
    “Are you sure sir, I could have sworn it was your voice on the intercom.”
    “What makes you think I sent for you?”
    “It was your voice, you told me to get my backside over to the Green Dome pronto, so here I am.”
    “I didn’t want to see you. So you had better get back to the Control room and see if the Supervisor has anything you can do.”
    “Well seeing as I’m here, perhaps there’s something I can do, count the paperclips…..”
    “I don’t have any paperclips.”
    “Ah! I can help you there sir, I have a contact in the Stationary office…..”
    “Do I take it you’re not at all keen to go outside 22?”
    “It’s pouring down with rain sir!”
    “Do you know 22 that if I had to go outside in this weather I would not hesitate for one minute, I’d wrap my scarf about my shoulders open my umbrella shooting tick and go out into the rain and tempest without a second thought. But thankfully I do not, you on the other hand do.”
    “Yes sir.
    “If Number 1 said I had to go out I would say yes sir, of course sir right away sir.”
    “Yes sir, no sir, three bags full sir, then under your breath you’d say what you really wanted to say!”
    “I don’t know what you mean!”
    It was then the large over-sized red curved intercom began to bleep, and bleep most impatiently.”
    The two men stood looking at the device, eventually No.2 picked it up.
    “Number 2 here………yes sir………well I was in conference with my assistant Number 22……….well of course sir I will sir…………you want me to what sir?............I will sir straight away.”
    No.2 replaced the intercom on the desk.
    “If it wasn’t bad enough being humiliated by having to use that ridiculous intercom, confound the man, do you know what this upstart of a Number 1 wants me to do now…….”
    It was at that point the large over-sized red curved intercom began to bleep once more. This startled No.2 for a second, but it was with confidence that he picked the intercom up.
    “Number 2 here sir………..oh you heard………….I see.”
    No.2 hesitated for a second or two before handing the intercom to his assistant.
    “He wants to talk to you.”
    “Me, what does he want with me?”
    “I believe congratulations are in order………Number 2!”
Be seeing you

Friday 17 April 2020

Page 6

    During the Prisoner’s debriefing we see a number of still photographs on the wall screen in Number 2’s office.
    “What was that, sounded like a click, something in the mirror, or was it over there? Yes over there too!”
    The question is who was keeping ZM73 under the closest possible surveillance, and why? It might have been British Intelligence; it could have been Special Branch, or those behind the village who were keeping an eye on him for selection to be abducted to the village!
    In ‘Dance of The Dead’ we learn there is a camera in the shower room in ‘6 Private,’ and there must be cameras covering all angles in the cottage. But when No.6 is taking a shower is the camera then turned off, thereby affording No.6 and others like him, a certain amount of personal privacy? And what about going to the toilet, mind you ‘6 Private’ doesn’t seem to have a toilet, how very uncomfortable for No.6!

Be seeing you


    “Get me Number 14…….Number 14 the experiment must come forward.” 
    “Impossible I need all of a week.”
    “I haven’t got a week!”
    “I haven’t finished testing it on animals, let alone people.”
    “Then now’s your chance!”

    It’s true that animals dream, my cat Pushkin for example certainly dreams, and when she does her legs kick out as though she’s chasing something, cats generally dream about chasing something. But the question is, as a good friend of mine asked, what would testing on animals prove when it comes to "reading" and manipulating human dreams? Dreams or more generally put: imagination that follows a certain accessible logic to some degree. But what is the nature (logic) of animal dreams? Do the Village scientists know?
    It’s perfectly right to question the nature, or logic to animal dreams.     So what would testing her drug on animals prove exactly? And how were those experiments conducted on animals in order to prove her drug? Perhaps No.14 conducted a number of tests on animals in the same way she hooked No.6 up to her equipment, displaying energy from the brain, thoughts like sound waves, converted into electrical impulses and finally………………..into pictures displayed on a screen.
What would testing on animals prove when it comes to "reading" and manipulating human dreams?” I don’t think No.14 would want to manipulate an animal’s dream, and even if she did how would that be done exactly, even if she could get into the animal’s dream.
    Perhaps No.14 had the theory that it’s possible to see into the sub-consciousness of animals and like No.6, bring their dreams to life on the screen. And perhaps that was enough. Because I don’t think 14 had the idea of having to manipulate No.6’s dream until later into the experiment.

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Tuesday 14 April 2020


    Having handed in his letter of resignation, ZM73 {for want of a better name} hurried home to collect his passport, airline ticket, and two suitcases which he had already packed. In effect he was in a hurry to get away to catch his flight. However he was too late, they were already waiting for him, because even as he went into his house a black hearse had pulled up outside. And as he puts two holiday brochures into one of the suitcases nerve agent was pumped into the room, and he falls back onto a couch apparently unconscious from the affect of the nerve agent. However thinking about what Curtis said in ‘The Schizoid Man,’ about the nerve agent when he was armed with a gas gun “One squirt you’re paralyzed, two squirts you’re dead.” So was ZM73 still conscious, aware of what was happening to him as they placed his body in the coffin and put the lid on him? What a terrible experience for him, well that’s how I like to think of it, making the situation a little darker than it already is, but chances are the nerve agent renders the subject unconscious as well as paralyzing him!

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Thought For The Day

    I wonder when it was, and how No. 2 in ‘Arrival’ learned that he had been replaced. Perhaps it was while he was at the Labour Exchange, if No.2 had been promoted from administration, he was in the perfect place to try and get his old job back! We see the new No.2 riding passed the Labour Exchange on his way to the Green Dome just as predecessor was going into the Labour Exchange, if he was allowed to return to the Green Dome then to find his successor already settled in to his office would have come as a shock. But at least they allowed him to finish his task with No.6 first before they gave him the sack.
   I can think of only one reason they would replace No.2, and that is to have No.6 begin all over again with a new No.2, just to keep him off balance! How long the first No.2 had been in the village we do not know. De-briefing, and briefing No.6 about the village may well have been his last task before the end of his term in office. Mind you we have no idea just how long his successor lasted after ‘Arrival.’ Interim No.2’s do not tend to last all that long, I say interim No.2 because not one of them is permanent!
   It has not escaped my notice that the managers of the Labour exchange in both ‘Arrival’ and ‘Free For All’ do not dress the same as other administrative figures in the village. No.20 here for example, wears the grey tails and grey top hat as though dressed for a wedding!

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Saturday 11 April 2020

Tales From The Village

    There were strange goings on in the woods. A soldier was on point duty, scouting ahead some 200 yards of the main unit. He stopped and crouched down at the base of a tree, watched and waited as the main unit came up. The infantry unit was supported by personnel carriers, two armoured cars, three half-tracks, and six tanks. At the edge of the woods the soldier could see the buildings of the village, there was no-one about, it being a little after dawn. As the armoured force broke cover the sound of jet engines could be heard, as four Lightening jets flew low over the estuary so as to avoid being detected by radar. In the estuary itself three ships appeared, destroyers, they spread out so to create a blockade, and from beneath the waves a periscope appeared, as two submarines lurked like grey sharks.
    In the control room the radar operator reported four small contacts that barley registered, yet there they were.
    “Could you be picking up birds?” the Supervisor asked.
    “It’s possible, the contacts are small enough to be birds, but travelling very fast and heading straight for the village” the operator replied.
    “Supervisor, three sonar contacts in the estuary!”
    “What, there can’t be!”
    “Three small contacts” said the sonar operator “barely registering, but there never the less.”
    “Let’s try and get a visual” the supervisor ordered.
    The large wall screen came to life and a surveillance camera panned out across the estuary, there was no sign of any vessels in the estuary, then suddenly the screen went blank.
   “What’s wrong, why did we lose the picture?”
   “The feed was cut sir.”
   “Put up camera 34” ordered the supervisor.
   The screen was blank, it was the same with cameras 22, 10, 11, 25 and camera 5. The supervisor picked up the yellow ‘L’ shaped intercom and put a call through to No.2.
    “Yes what is it?” No.2 said in an annoyed manner at being disturbed so early in the morning.
    “I have to report radar and sonar contacts, also a number of cameras are down, I believe the village to be under attack by an unknown military force” said the supervisor.
    “Under attack don’t be ridiculous!”
    Two commando units had managed to infiltrate the village unseen, and eventually cut the wires of all the cameras.
    Now the infantry moved forward filtering through the village taking up key positions. There were three major objectives the Bell Tower being one in order to control the high ground. The Green Dome being a point of command, and the Town Hall, for they who hold the Town Hall hold the village!
   No.2 had made his way to his office in the Green Dome to find his wall screen was as useless as the one in the control room. He ordered a number of guardians to be the eyes and ears of the village and to go out and investigate. While electrics control was to repair the surveillance system and get all the cameras back on line. But the guardians met with resistance and were quickly over powered by the soldiers. The four Lightening jets were suddenly caught in the beam of the searchlight positioned at the top of the
Bell Tower. The jets swooped and attacked the Bell Tower and the three man crew manning the searchlight. A number of rockets were fired hitting their target exploding on contact and shooting out the searchlight. Bullets from the jet’s cannons ricocheted as the three men dived for cover.
   Back on the ground the armoured force moved forward, if only the cameras had been working, those in the control room, as well as No.2 in his office would have been astonished to see tanks on the streets of the village! As it was there was confusion in the control room, being blind didn’t help; what’s more there had not been one single report from any of the guardians sent out to scout the situation. An electrician was working on one of the surveillance cameras, the wires of which had been cut. He returned to the electrics truck and picking up a head set put a call through to electrics control. But before he could give his report he felt a sharp pain in his leg, there was blood as the bayonet was pulled out and stuck in again. Then two helicopters appeared, there was a line trailing from the helicopters, and at the end of the line a hook which caught in the collar of the electrician’s over alls. As the helicopters pulled on their load, the man stumbled, tripped, and fell to the ground where a number of soldiers overpowered the man and tied him up.
   The first commando unit had turned their attention to the Green Dome, they scaled the steps leading up to a balcony. Explosives were laid at the door of the Green Dome, fuses lit as the commandos retired to a safe distance. The explosives detonated and blew the door in, the commandos rushed in taking up defensive positions in the foyer as explosives were laid at the pair of steel doors.
   The second commando unit had managed to disable the electronic force-field gaining entry into the Town Hall. Once in the foyer the commandos used explosives to blow the pair of French doors leading to the council chamber, the pair of doors leading to the underground tunnels and eventually the control room.
   In the Green Dome explosives failed to blow open the pair of blast proof steel doors, but No.2 had heard the explosion which left him in no doubt that the Green Dome and the village as a whole was indeed under attack by forces unknown. He picked up the yellow ‘L’ shaped intercom and called the control room.
   “Supervisor here sir……an explosion sir, yes we have had one of those, but so far the blast proof doors are holding…..Yes sir security have been alerted but have come under fire in the underground passageways. An armed force by-passed the electronic force-field and gained entry to the Town Hall, which we now presume is in the hands of the enemy, having had no reports from security.”
    Outside in the village the shopkeeper was opening the General Store, a waitress was busy opening the café, when both were put under threat by two armoured cars, and put under armed guard as three companies of soldiers began taking over the village building by building. A few early risers, citizens who went for early morning walks were also captured and put under military guard for their own protection.
   At sea the motor ship Polotska was returning to the village from a night-time patrol when she and her crew came under attack from three destroyers which were acting as a blockade. A shell overshot the Polotska, another fell short as one destroyer found its range, a third shell hit its target, as did fourth, and then salvo after salvo was fired as the three destroyers closed in for the kill. But the Polotska was a small enough craft and managed to out manoeuvre her attackers and   turned about and put back out to sea.
   Back in the Green Dome the team of commandos had managed to cut through a section of steel plating using acetylene cutting equipment, there were three wires of the control circuit, red, green and yellow. A commando cut the green and yellow wires, then joined the two wires together effectively short circuiting the electrical circuit and the steel doors slid open. No.2 stood by his desk shocked and astonished to see three commandos standing framed in the open doorway brandishing sten guns. At the same time the pair of steel doors slid open and the second unit of commandos quickly took command of the control Room. The supervisor and personnel, who were unarmed and therefore powerless, were quickly overpowered and put under armed guard.
    No.2 stared at the three commandos, who were now joined by the rest of the unit, moving quickly down the ramp keeping their weapons pointed at the man standing by the desk. He laughed and a commando saw him laugh and fired his sten gun. A hail of bullets hit No.2; the other commandos also opened fire forcing No.2 to take cover behind his desk. He managed to put a hand up to his desk top and taking an intercom he put a call through to the control room.
   The yellow ‘L’ shaped intercom began to bleep a soldier indicated to the supervisor to answer it.
   “Supervisor here sir……………...commandos yes sir there’s a unit here as well, they have taken over the control room. It would seem the village is in the hands of a model army!”
   The firing in the Green Dome stopped, the grey desk and No.2 with it, was surrounded. Standing up No.2 held up his arms in surrender, but who was he to surrender too, surely not to these toy soldiers! True the model army was a miniature force, but fully quipped and backed up by Air and Naval forces. And together they had managed to achieve their objectives, to attack a number of key positions, subdue enemy personnel, and occupy the captured ground of the village. And now six helicopters had flown in more soldiers to back-up the attacking force.
   Standing on the quayside the ex-Admiral was controlling the three destroyers, and two patrolling submarines from an electronic control box. The two pocket battle ships appeared and anchored in mid stream of the estuary. While back in the Green Dome the General now stood framed in the open doorway.
    “You, I don’t believe it!”
    “The village is ours” the General said.
    “The ex-Admiral, me and the Professor of course.”
    “The Professor!”
    “He’s responsible for this small fighting force; we have an entire fully equipped model army as well as an Air Force and Navy to back us up if necessary. Which means you and everyone in this village are powerless to stop us” the General said with confidence.
    “So you’ve managed to capture me and the village with a gang of toy mechanical soldiers.”
   “Ingenious aren’t they. I’ve no idea how they work that’s the Professor’s secret, but the Admiral and I operate them from these radio control boxes, while others have been pre-programmed.
    “So what now?”
    “To bring this village down about your ears that has been our main objective all the time” the General said “to retain control while a radio message is transmitted to the outside World which will bring real armed forces here.”
    “You’ll never get away with it” No.2 said.
    “We seem to be making a fairly descent job of it so far.”
    Meanwhile in the control room all the personnel had been forced to sit on the floor under guard. The ex-Admiral who was now on the scene and in remote control of the commandos backed-up by a company of infantry soldiers, gave orders for a radio operator to send a distress call. The supervisor told the radio operator to do as he was instructed, but made eyes towards a free standing control panel. No.78 nodded slightly and being allowed to get to his feet went over to the radio microphone accompanied by three commandos. He glanced over to the control panel, wondering how he could get to it without attracting attention.
   “You will need to switch on that control panel first” the supervisor instructed.
   No.78 had received the message loud and clear.
   Two commandos accompanied 78 to the control panel. He flicked two switches. Outside the village fag was flying from a flagpole, the top of which flipped open and a device called the Beam rose up out of the flagpole.
    “You, what are you doing?” the ex-Admiral demanded to know.
    No.78 felt the pain of a bayonet stuck in the ankle, then a second the pain shooting up into his leg…….he pressed a red button activating the Beam.
    At the top of the flagpole the Beam rotated sending out electronic pulses disrupting the radio signals from the General’s and ex-Admiral’s control boxes. The miniature soldiers stood still, or fell over. Out in the village pre-programmed soldiers stood where they were, many previously on guard duty. Tanks, half-tracks, personnel carriers and armoured cars were unmoving, helicopters and four patrolling lightening jet aircraft crashed to the ground. While in the estuary the fleet was anchored off shore.
    With the model army immobilized the supervisor and his assistant regained control of the control room and the ex-Admiral was over powered and taken away by security guards. More security guards captured the General as he was making good his escape from the Green Dome. Then mopping up operations began, and electrics control worked feverishly to get the surveillance system back on-line. And yet there was still one person to defeat and bring to a reckoning, the Professor, who was the mechanic behind the model army.
    No.22 of administration marched smartly down the ramp through the open steel doors “You called Number 2.”
    “Ah there you are 22; we have work to do. Organize two Mini-Mokes and six armed security guards to accompany us into the woods.”
    “Right away Number 2.”
    “We are going to pay a call on the Professor!”
    Two Mini-Mokes left the village and travelled along a track into the woods until they reached a rock face, set in that rock face was a single steel door. The vehicles came to a stop and the eight men alighted and approached the steel door. It did not slide open but remained closed.
    “Leave this to me Number 2” No.22 said stepping forward.
    From his blazer pocket he produced steel ruler and a rubber eraser which he broke in half holding the ruler between the two pieces of eraser. The he slipped the ruler between the top of the door frame and the steel door and running along eventually breaking the electrical circuit and the door slid open.
   “Well done 22” 2 said
    “Thank you sir.”
   In a body the eight men entered the laboratory, they found the Professor working a model of a German Tiger tank.
    “Yes do come in gentlemen, oh you’ve come armed there’s no need I assure you” said the Professor.
    “We could not be sure of that” Number 2 said looking about the laboratory “You have been busy!”
   All about the laboratory were model infantrymen, tanks, lorries, personnel carriers, ships, submarines, helicopters, jet aircraft powered by miniature jet engines, and air transport planes, and three ranks of paratroopers.
    “You wage war Professor, using the General and ex-Admiral.”
    “They are not to blame, but they were only too happy to take part, it gave them purpose once again don’t you see” the Professor said.
    “You wanted to destroy the village?”
    “Yes, and we would have succeeded had it not been for that electronic defence beam we would have succeeded!” the Professor snarled.
    “But you didn’t. Your model army will of course be destroyed, your laboratory dismantled” No.2 said.
    “What will happen to me?”
    “Oh I think the doctors will arrive at some form of therapy, rehabilitation treatment. Certainly you will never be allowed anywhere near a laboratory again. Take him away” No.2 ordered.
   Four security guards stepped forward and the Professor was taken away under armed guard.
   “The Professor is something of a genius Number 2 to have created such a model army, some of which was pre-programmed” No.22 observed.
    “Robots you mean.”
    “If you like, but what I find fascinating is the fact he was able to create his model army right under your nose!”
    “We gave him far too much latitude and will not be making that mistake again, and you can wipe that smirk off your face Number 22.”
    “Just a thought, but I expect Number 1 could have used such an army as this. Those commando units knew exactly what they were doing and proved very effective.”
    “Organize a team of technicians to dismantle this place, oh and bring that Tiger tank with you would you 22.”
    “Why sir?”
    “I’ll keep it on my desk, as a memento of the battle for the village!”

Be seeing you

     {With apologies to General Jumbo of The Beano}

Wednesday 8 April 2020


    This is No.14 played by Sheila Allen in the episode ‘A B & C,’ who I feel was just as much a victim in the village as anyone. Its possible that she herself had been brought to the Village because of her new experimental “wonder” drug, which No.2 forced her use on No.6, something which she was reluctant to do, seeing as it hadn’t yet been tested on animals.
    However what fans of ‘the Prisoner’ probably do not realize is, that Sheila actually appears twice in the series! Now work that one out if you can. Readers of my book ‘The Prisoner Dusted Down’ will know the answer to this one!

I'll be seeing you

Village Matters

    What with Chambers being “late” of the Foreign Office having presumably defected, ZM73 resigning his job, then there’s Cobb who is now working for the village. And what about the Colonel and Fotheringay? They have obviously been recruited and now in the  pay of those behind the village, while at the same time maintaining their positions in Military Intelligence, although the Colonel doesn’t appear to have that much intelligence! And of course later in ‘Fall Out’ we learn that No.2 of ‘Chimes’ was once abducted to the village and forced to work for the village whilst maintaining his position in the House of Lords, possibly in the Foreign Office. And then there’s ‘A’ who made World news once by defecting to the other side, although he doesn’t appear to have been all that important to have been taken to the village. Dutton appears to have been more important on the information  front even though he didn’t have access to the vital stuff, but than perhaps ‘A’ didn’t know enough to have himself abducted to the village. On the other hand, perhaps the other side got to him before he could be abducted to the Village! Certainly there seems to be something of a “brain drain,” for want of a better term from the British Civil Service at that time. Only persons who have remained loyal, are ZM73 despite his resignation, and Roland Walter Dutton who held out against them for as long as he could before he gave them all the information he knew

Be seeing you

Sunday 5 April 2020


    Whatever was ‘B’ doing hiking across the mountains to Switzerland? Obviously attempting to avoid capture by her enemies. ‘B’ is the first woman Number 6 feels at ease with, except perhaps for Nadia, but then he was using her so that he could achieve his own aims, that of escape. ‘B’ on the other hand, which side do they represent to each other? Number 6 and ‘A’ for example used to work on the same side, they were once friends. But now ‘A’ does the same job but on a different side to that of his former friend and colleague. But ‘B’ Number 6 knows a good deal about her, that she has a son, and her son’s name although he did not utter it. They dance together, Number 6 plays a kind of “handy-pandy” with her, and even has his arm round her waist, he seems very relaxed in her company. Yes he does get close to Nadia in one scene, but then that’s not the actress Nadia Gray playing Nadia Rakovski!

Be seeing you

In The Village!

    Why have the cemetery on the beach, perhaps it was just to be eccentric, or simply because it’s the village. And there’s no accounting for anything they do in the village. But why the need for a second cemetery somewhere in the woods as seen in ‘Hammer Into Anvil?’ Simply, because they have to have a cemetery somewhere and they are no longer in the village, but somewhere behind the back lot at MGM film studios!

Be seeing you

Thursday 2 April 2020

Tales From The Village

    There was an air of excitement in the village, because of the forthcoming village regatta.
    “Good morning, good morning and what a lovely day it is. The spell of fine weather is due to last at least another month” the cheery female voice announced “Ice cream is now on sale, vanilla is the flavour of the day. There are just 7 days before the village regatta. Don’t forget, if you wish to take part in the regatta you must register your boat within the next three days.”
    When No.9 had heard the announcement he was sat at a table on the patio of the café enjoying afternoon tea. The announcement puzzled him, and turned to two chaps sat at another table, they had ‘Village Yachting Club’ on their jerseys.
    “You look like two likely chaps to tell me about this village regatta.”
    No.213 and No.267 looked at each other “What do you want to know?”
    “You’re allowed boats?”
    “Why yes” 213 said.
    “Otherwise it wouldn’t be much of a regatta would it!” 267 said.
    “And you’re members of the village yachting club?”
    “He’s sharp” 213 said.
    “You thinking of joining the club?” 267 asked.
    “I might, have you got a yacht you can lend me?” No.9 asked.
    “Haven’t you a yacht of your own?”
    “No, I didn’t know we were allowed them, that’s why I want to borrow one.”
    No.213 rubbed his chin “Well the committee likes members to own their own boats.”
    “That’s right” 267 said “particular about that the committee is, beside members don’t like to lend their boats to people, not even to a fellow members of the club.”
    “And Number 2 is alright about you having boats is he?”
    “Why shouldn’t he be, he himself is a member of the village yachting club.”
    No.9 stood up and joined the two men at their table and drew near to them, so as not to be overheard.
    “Tell me, if you all have boats, why don’t any of you try and escape? If I had a boat I wouldn’t hang about this place for more than it took me to set sail!”
    No.’s 267 and 213 looked at each other quizzically.
    “If I had a boat I could take part in the village regatta, and when it was in full swing I could slip quietly away and make for the open sea.”
    No.267 and 213 still looked at each other then at No.9.
    “Well at least take me to your boathouse” No.9 pleaded.
    No.267 and 213 looked at each other.
    “Well I suppose we could take you to the yachting club” 213 finally said.
    “Yachting club, well that’s more like it” said No.9 eagerly “Say when shall it be?”
    It was then that they were joined by two more men sporting a Village Yachting Club jersey and they were each carrying something which made No.9’s heart sink.
    “Wh…..what are those?” No.9 asked.
    “Pond yachts” No.59 said enthusiastically
    “Mine is called Northern Star” No.104 said.
    “And mine’s Southern Star” 59 said “Mine has the blue and white paint, and Northern Star has the green and white paint.”
    “You mean……you mean your yachting club sails pond yachts?”
    “That’s right” 267 said “we’ll be sailing our pond yachts in the Free Sea in the Piazza for the village regatta. It should prove very spectacular.”
    No.9 made his excuses and left the group with No.267 shouting after him about going to the yachting club.
    In the control room the supervisor-No.56 bald-headed man wearing a dark green polo neck jersey and single breasted dark blue blazer stood with No.2 looking at No.9 pictured on the wall screen.
    “He looks disappointed” said the supervisor.
    “He has every right to be” said No.2, who was a man in his late forties, with black hair wearing steel rimmed spectacles.
    “As if we would permit the ownership of any kind of boat to ordinary citizens” said the supervisor.
    “Indeed to any citizen” No.2 said still watching the wall screen as No.9 made his way to the Piazza.
    There was the red and white striped awning of a kiosk where a variety of pond yachts were for sale. No.9 paused and looked at the tidy vessels. Then his attention was drawn to No.66 the ex-Admiral, who was with a fellow boating enthusiast.
    “Hello” No.9 said “Not sailing today?”
    The ex-Admiral looked up, he held a small control box in his hands, a small aerial protruded from the box.
    “Well yes and no” he said “allow me to introduce you to my first officer Number 1.”
   The first officer also held a control box and was concentrating very hard as he pressed a number of buttons. No.9 stood looking at the two men, then turned his attention to the Free Sea, there was a yacht towards the farther end of the pool. Suddenly there was a minor explosion, a spout of water, the yacht heeled over and began to sink. He saw a man step into the water in order to retrieve the stricken yacht and began to study it. The ex-Admiral and No.1 looked at each other, a final press on the two control boxes and two miniature submarines broke through the surface and made their way to the side of the pool.
    “You, you pair did this” the owner of the stricken yacht shouted “you sank my yacht!”
    No.9 stood watching as the ex-Admiral and his first officer retrieved the two submarines from the Free Sea and made off with them in somewhat of a hurry, with the owner of the yacht shouting and shaking his fist.
    “Curious that they should sink 81’s yacht like that” the supervisor said.
    “Curious indeed” said No.2 “that they should have working models like two submarines in the first pace. I wonder how they came by them? Put a watch on the ex-Admiral and his first officer. I want to know where they go, and whom they meet.
    “Yes Number 2” the supervisor said, and gave orders to that effect to the Observers.
    Almost every day there were a number of the Village Yachting Club members sailing their pond yachts in the free Sea, No.9 had to admit it looked quite impressive. No.81 had purchased a new pond yacht called Northern Star from the kiosk, this to replace the one that was sunk by the rogue submarine. He immediately carried the yacht over to the Free Sea, set her sails and jib and put her in the water. There was a gentle breeze which made it perfect for sailing. There were yachts of all kinds and sizes, and everyone was honing their sailing skills, getting the most out of their vessels. The promenaders were most interested in the activity, and many stopped to watch and admire the yachts. Then the ex-Admiral and his Flag officer appeared carrying a large ship, it was a model of a pocket battleship about three feet in length. The members of the yachting club all turned and stared.
    “That’s enough Admiral” No.199 said “this is a yachting club, that hardly constitutes a yacht.”
    “Tell me why a pocket battleship cannot take part in the regatta?”
    “It’s motorised and operated by remote control, just like that blasted submarine of yours which sank my yacht. How did you do that by the way?” 81 said lifting the Northern Star out of the water.
    There was a bit of an argument before the ex-Admiral and his first officer withdrew, carrying the battleship.
    “Where do you think the ex-Admiral is getting these superb models, they are complete in every detail” Number 2 asked watching the wall screen.
    No.14 stood in No.2’s office also watching the screen “I could find out for you sir, I’ll make the Admiral talk!”
    “No! We don’t want any strong arm stuff just yet. The supervisor is watching the old sea dog, he’ll give himself away sooner or later.”
    “Are you going to attend the regatta sir?”
    “Of course, I’m to award the regatta trophy myself.”
        Citizens were gathering in the Piazza, the brass band was playing, and members of the Village Yachting Club were beginning to assemble by the Free Sea with their various pond yachts. No.10 was favoured by many to win this year’s regatta with his yacht the Amis Reunis. No.2 was present enjoying an afternoon out of the office, mingling amongst the crowd with his assistant No.14 in tow. It was certainly a grand day for it, blue sky, sunshine, and a gentle breeze made for perfect sailing conditions, and it would to prove most spectacular. No.9 was also in attendance, he had bought himself an ice cream and was sat on a bench watching the proceedings. The regatta competitors were making their preparations for the first race, setting sails and adjusting the rigging.
    The course was an easy one, yachts were set on a course towards the fountain, round the fountain, and back again, each race was run in pairs. The first race would be between Northern Star with white hull and green trim, and Southern Star with white hull and blue trim. The second race was to be between Endeavour I and Pride of The Pond, and the third race between Endeavour II and The Surprise. Each yacht had a pole-person who would walk long both sides of the Free Sea prepared to push yachts into an opposite tack before collision with the edge. The Pond yachts were put into different classes according to size. There was one disqualification and that was the ex-Admirals battleship, but it was agreed that at some point between races a demonstration of the battleship could take place in order to entertain the spectators. To this the ex-Admiral reluctantly agreed.
   And so the regatta was underway much to the delight of the spectators, No.80 set the rigging of Northern Star and No.59 did likewise with Southern Star, and with both yachts in the water the race was under way. Both yachts looked good as they were carried along by a gentle breeze. Northern Star headed towards the edge of the Free Sea but No.80 eased her away with the tip of his pole, while Southern Star took an early lead along the pool towards the fountain, but instead of heading towards the side the yacht headed straight for it, making No.59 hold out his pole and ease Southern Star onto a tack which was to take the yacht round the fountain, but found difficulty in this. This gave Northern Star time to catch her sister yacht and swept passed as No.59 tried to regain the yachts course. With a prod from No.80’s pole Southern Star made it cleanly round the fountain and on a return course to finish the race. But No.59 had managed to get Northern Star back on an even course, rounded the fountain and began to catch Southern Star, however with a gentle prod from the pole man to stop her from crashing into the wall Southern Star crossed the line to win.
    In the next race Endeavour II beat the Amis Reunis. The races continued and the spectators watched with enjoyment the Pride of the Pond beat Endeavour I and Endeavour II in both her races. Southern Star went on to race Endeavour II however both yachts failed to finish. There was a collision; Endeavour II’s bow sprite became entangled in Southern Star’s rigging. Try as much as they may the two pole men could not separate the two yachts, and in the end had to wade into the Free Sea to retrieve them. The regatta continued with race after race, but the most outstanding yacht was the Pride of the Pond the best in her class.
    “Good afternoon citizens, what an exciting regatta we have, and I trust you are all enjoying yourselves” said a cherry female announcer “however the thrills are not over yet. To close the regatta there is to be a sea battle between a model pocket battleship and two D class destroyers.”
    The spectators watched eagerly as the ex-Admiral put the pocket battleship into the water at one end of the Free Sea. His first officer at other end put the two D class destroyers into the water. All three ships were motorized models and complete in every detail, there was even smoke coming out of the smoke stacks, and controlled from two control boxes. The pocket battleship set off, as did the two destroyers from around the fountain. Suddenly the destroyers parted and sailed towards the battleship from two angles, this action would effectively split the fire power of the battleship. The two forward turrets of the battleship turned, fixing her guns on one of the destroyers and opened fire, one shell went over the destroyer while another fell short, but a third found the range and a hit was scored on the destroyer who opened fire in return but falling short of its mark. Both the ex-Admiral and his first officer worked feverishly at their control panels, especially the first officer, as he had two ships to control. The second destroyer moved in on the battleship opening fire with her forward guns, then turning fired a broadside, as did the battleship scoring several hits on the destroyer. While the first destroyer fired two torpedoes at the pocket battleship, which took evasive action turning hard to starboard. Two of the torpedoes passed the ship, but the destroyer fired another two torpedoes and the battleship and the second destroyer continued their engagement. The battleship turned, but it was too late, the first torpedo struck amidships, the second hit the rudder and steering gear disabling the ship which began to list heavily to port. The two badly damaged destroyers moved in for the kill, but the ex-Admiral put up his hands indicating defeat and the battle was won.
    In No.2’s office he and the Supervisor had been observing the sea battle re-enactment on the wall screen.
    “What did you make of that?” No.2 asked.
    “I think it went rather well” the Supervisor said “everyone appeared to enjoy themselves.”
    “And what did you make of the spectacular finale?”
    “You mean the battle.”
    “Rather spectacular.”
    “Did you find have the ex-Admiral and his first officer followed?”
    “He went to see the Professor in the woods.”
    “You mean the Professor in the laboratory?”
    “What business would they have with the Professor?”
    “I really don’t know sir, there’s no surveillance in the laboratory, he’s always been left to his own devices.”
    “What about those ships, I mean they look miniatures of the real thing. The destroyers were even armed with torpedoes.”
    “And the damage to the ships looked realistic, for model craft” the Supervisor added.
    “Yes, that’s what worries me. Where are the ex-Admiral and his first officer now I wonder?”
    “No.2 leaned forward and pressing a button on the control panel of his desk changed the picture on the wall screen, then panning was able to pick up the intended targets. The ex-Admiral and the first officer were carrying the three model ships between them into the woods.
    “Perhaps we can pick them up on one or two cameras in the woods” No.2 suggested pressing more buttons.
    “The woods are not comprehensively covered by surveillance cameras, there are a good deal of blind spots” the Supervisor admitted.
    “I trust that is not widely known” No.2 said.
    “The Professor has been ordering a good deal of materials over the past few months, metals, wiring, motors, he’s very mechanically minded. May I suggest the ex-Admiral and his first officer have gone there in order to have the three boats repaired by the Professor?”
    “You may, but I want to know what the Professor has been working on all these past months with no sign of anything being produced. What’s he doing in that laboratory of his……..that’s what I want to know!”
Be seeing you