Sunday, 30 January 2011

Welcome To Your Home From Home

      Well hardly that, more of a study with the annex of kitchen, bathroom and bedroom added on. Because the only part of the Prisoners home to be exact as that of his home back in London is the study and small bathroom. But then I suppose they could not replicate the whole of the Prisoners London home in the village. However the cottage does have an electronically operated door, as does his London home in Fall Out. The only other house to enjoy such a door is that of the Green Dome, the residence of No.2. But although the Green Dome is something of a grandiose building, it's not really No.2's residence, more just his office. No.2's quarters are situated somewhere underground. You will recall how No.2 in A B & C rises up through the floor in the globe chair still wearing his pyjamas and dressing gown. So it seems that No.6 has a much more comfortable home than No.2! As for the Butler, he lives in the annex round the back of the Green Dome, and no doubt that's where the kitchen is to be found when the Butler is called upon to prepare breakfast, tea or coffee for No.2 and any visitor he might have.
   Certainly citizens of the village appear to live in relative comfort. They live in replicas of their own home, or part of their own home. But no matter how you look at it, no matter how much 'they' dress it up, cottages like '6 Private' it is still a comfortable prison 'cell,' the door of which is locked at curfew time because no-one is allowed out after curfew which is eight o'clock at night.
I'm Piet Hein

Thursday, 27 January 2011

The Prisoner - A Vicious Circle?

    If  the end of Fall Out is the beginning of Arrival, that would indeed make the Prisoner a vicious circle. But also is the Prisoner also trapped in a time-loop, doomed to live out the actions of his resignation, abduction, and life in the village over and over again? What's more is the Prisoner aware of this possibility, and if he is, what can he do to break this nightmare of events? Perhaps not to resign in the first place might be a good place to start. Or at least not to go home after handing in that letter of resignation. That way they might not catch up with the Prisoner so quickly. Yes I know the two Undertakers were following the Prisoner through the streets of London, from the moment he drove out of that underground car park in Abingdon Street. But the Undertakers must have gone a different way at some point, as they were waiting for the Prisoner on his arrival home. And I suppose the retiring No.2 got it right, that they'd catch up with him sooner or later.
  So the Prisoner is in the village a second time around. Is there anything he can do to escape? Well search the helicopter for the remote control device set in the helicopter, and rip it out before he takes off, might be favourite. Then No.6 could simply fly away, and there would be no stopping him!
    So what  if the Prisoner-No.6 was aware of the possibility that he was trapped in a time-loop, he could have some fun. For example, while in the hospital No.6 could stop Cobb from jumping out of the Hospital window, which he never did in the first place! In The Chimes of Big Ben No.6 would know not to trust Nadia-No.8. No.6 owuld alos know that it would be a watse of time and effort 'running for Public Office in the elections of Free For All,and so on and so fourth through the whole series of events right up to and including those events of Many Happy Returns, No.6 could simply not play the game, but just sit down somewhere until the village eventually came back to life, as indeed it surely would. Or having escaped back to England, not to return home to 1 Buckinghame Place, or to do so to get a wash, shave, and a change of clothes, but as soon as he drove away in his Lotus, don't go and pay those two calls as he previously did, one in town, and one to the Colonel in the country. Then escape would be possible.
   But then again, what if there is no changing the events of the Prisoner, what is it they call it, cause and effect? That no matter what No.6 does to try and alter things, events are pre-ordained, and history cannot be altered no matter what one does to try and change events, they will still happen no matter what, and No.6 will forever remain a Prisoner.
I'm Piet Hein

Sunday, 23 January 2011

A Question Of Identity

    In Arrival the Prisoner has his identity taken away from him, and is given a new identity, that of No.6. And the new No.2 will not allow the Prisoner to forget his new identity, "Good day Number Six." Number what?" asks the Prisoner. "For official purposes everyone has a number, you are Number Six." "I am not a number, I am a person" replies the Prisoner, and will never admit to being numbered..................However by the time of The Schizoid Man, No.6 is physically battling to retain his identity of No.6. And in Hammer Into Anvil, the Prisoner proudly claims to be No.6 at the close of the episode. The only problem is, No.2 will not believe him. No.2 believes No.6 to be a plant, D6! And finally in Once Upon A Time, during the deliberations between No.2 and No.6, the situation becomes even more confused, when their sparring eventually leads them to exchange roles. Which number actually dies and which lives on remains a fertive subject for debate. But at least I know who I am, You know who I am........I'm Piet Hein.

Friday, 21 January 2011


    I've been watching THEPRISONER again............and it seems to me that with this reinterpretation, Six is not the problem like his predecessor No.6, but the solution! And that 'Talk Threapy' is just a lot of mumbo-jumbo. Certainly Two doesn't believe in it. It's just important for Six to believe. What is it Two said "A man with nothing to hide, has nothing to find."
   I like the scene in the desert where Six is tied to a stake.......Two is taunting him with a canteen of water.....then he puts a hand grenade in Six's mouth, pulls the safety pin, and calmly steps back........the grenade explodes and Six wakes up. So it's true, you can't die in a dream.....or can you? Because the village is all in the unconcious mind of Two's wife M2, and everyone in the village is there through mental manipulation, as though in a dream. After all, 93 died a village death, as did 455, 823, 415 909, 11-12, and M2..........................So it is possible to die in a dream after all!
    It was interesting for me to note a comparison between Six and No.6. No.6 created an abstract sculpture for the Exhibition of Arts and Crafts in the episode The Chimes of Big Ben, and called it 'Escape.' That's because for No.6 his sculpture respresented escape. And why not, because when all the pieces of the sculpture were put together in another way, it formed a boat, which No.6 and No.8 used to escape the village. In the desert Six saw a ships drift anchor in the desert. 16 described the anchor as a 'desert folly,' a nothing. But to Six the anchor represented escape. Because where there's an anchor there's a ship. And where there's a ship there's a sea, and that means escape!
    There was a ships anchor, but sadly no ship. There was a sea, which later turned out to be simply more desert! Because sadly, like all things in the village, the sea was simply all in the mind. A mixture of an echo of a distant memory, and the wish for escape!
However originally, there was going to be a full sized ship built and attached to that anchor out there in the       desert, and here is an set designers impression of such a ship.                                                          
The pointing finger of the set designer points to the ships anchor. However it soon became apparent that to build a full-sized ship in the desert was completely impractical. And so they settled for the ships drift anchor, which was made out of three quater inch plywood, as pictured below.
However, for both Six and his predecessor, there is no such escape. After all there's no escape, because there's nowhere to escape to!
I'm Piet Hein

Tuesday, 18 January 2011

Well I'll Be Damned If I'm Not Numbered!

   We know very well that Number Six refuses to wear his numbered badge, as on the day after his arrival in the village, and after his discharge from hospital Number Six takes off the badge pinned to his piped blazer, and tosses it into the back of the taxi, along with his straw boater and umbrella. In fact the only time Number Six actually wears his numbered badge is in the episode of The Schizoid Man, when he sets about impersonating Number Twelve, who has been impersonating Number Six all along, which means that Number Six is impersonating himself, but as Number Twelve as he tries to escape the village in the guise of Curtis!
   But it's not just Number Six who goes about the village not wearing a numbered badge. There's the Butler for a start, sub dividing the same number might be one thing, but then being of diminished size perhaps the village administration couldn't get itself involved in fractions! Oh and then there's that doctor who carried out a medical on Number Six the day after his arrival in the village, he doesn't wear a number either. But in his case he might have been wearing a new white coat and simply forgot to pin his badge to it.....or the badge simply fell off...............anyway that doctor seems to me to be a bit of a quack. I mean to say, he carries out Number Six's medical, and then relies upon a computer for a diagnosis report! And that's another come a mediocre doctor, who needs a computer to issue a medical diagnoisis of a patient, is able to actually read a computer print-out card?
    The Professor and his wife Madam Professor don't seem to have to wear their numbered badges either. I wonder how they get away with it? Perhaps that's one of the certain privilages the Professor and Madam Professor seem to enjoy!.........Just a minute, just a minute. If Number Six goes abouit not wearing his numbered badge, how is it that everyone he meets knows he's Number Six? Ah, but then again it's a very small village, and in any village everybody knows everyone else.
I'm Piet Hein

Saturday, 15 January 2011

Generally Speaking

        I've been sat here at my desk thinking what to write this morning, and I found my thoughts turning to, and feeling sorry for madam Professor. She and her husband the Professor, we don't actually know what there names were because in the village names are not used. Well except for Nadia Rakovsky, and Fotheringay during The Chimes of Big Ben, Alison in The Schizoid Man. Then there was Roland Walter Dutton in Dance of the Dead, and Monique of It's Your Funeral, which are the exceptions due to the relationship between themselves and the Prisoner-No.6. And nor do we know the numbers of The Professor and his wife, as they, like No.6, do not wear their numbered badges! But I digress, the Professor and Madam Professor came to the village of their own free will, the Professor to teach, and Madam Professor the artist, who holds art seminars in the garden of her home.
   But life in the village isn't as idylic as Madam Professor thought it would be. For Madam Professor is used by No.2 to keep help pursuade her husband to keep working on his lectures for the educational experiment of 'Speedlearn.' But the Professor is far from happy with the kind of work he is being forced and conditioned to do, and knows that the General, a super computer, must be destroyed!
   In the end, the Professor dies by being electrocuted to death by the General, which he was either introduced to, or gave birth to as the one contradicts the other in the episode of the same title as that of The General. I don't think the Professor intended to die. I mean I'm not of the opinion that the Professor comitted suicide, but in any case, the Professors death left Madam Professor both a widow, and a citizen of the village for as long as she lives...........
I'm Piet Hein

Saturday, 8 January 2011

Information - Information - Information

    Hello readers, and happy New Year to you one and all. I start off with my first column for 2011 with information about the Prisoner. Items of information with which you may or may not be familiar as fans of the 1960's television series.
1, Partick McGoohan left the production of the Prisoner in order to work on the film production in America of Ice Station Zebra. The money McGoohan earned was then put into the production of the Prisoner series. Funding of the series had been pulled by ATV, and at the time the crew working on the production, were putting their wages back into the series in order to keep it going. Without the dedication of the production crew, and the money earned by McGoohan from his work on Ice Station Zebra, the production of the Prisoner would have come to a full stop, and the possibilty of the series being left unfinished with the funding having run out!
2, Everytime you see Patrick McGoohan as Mister X in the fairground scenes in the episode The Girl Who Was Death, he is in front of a 'back projection' of film taken at the funfair at Southend-on-Sea. This is because McGoohan did not actually go to the funfair to film those scenes, he was still in America working on Ice Station Zebra! And the cricket scenes with McGoohan close-ups, were filmed in a field behind the MGM film studios as Borehamwood, and not on location at Eltersley cricket ground in Cambridgeshire.
3, In the fight scene, during 'B,' in the episode A B & C, you can see that Patrick McGoohan actually splits his trousers!
4, The new No.2 in Arrival is the only No.2 to wear a piped blazer.
5, In the early years of appreciation for the Prisoner, it was throught by some fans of the series, that the Butler was No.1. The conclusion being arrived at because it was the Butler who returned to the house of No.1 in Buckingham Place, Westminster, London. The door of the house opening and closing electronically as in the village.
6, It was the Butler who packed those two suitcases for the Prisoner, and left them waiting for him upon his return to the house. Well it had to be the Butler didn't it. No-one else entered the house except for the Butler after their return to London. The Prisoner having driven off straight away to hand in his letter of resignation, who would then return to his home to collect the two already packed suitcases, passport and airline ticket before they came for him, as they would during the opening sequence of Arrival.
7, If anyone did tamper with No.2's drink in Once Upon A Time, then it had had to be the Butler. Because there were only three people in that Embryo Room at the time, and No.6 didn't do it as he was on camera all the time. And don't forget the door of the Embryo Room was on a time lock.
8, Patrick McGoohan's stunt double Frank Maher appears not only as No.6, but also No.12 as often as Patrick McGoohan does during The Schizoid Man, but yet went uncredited for the role!
9, The Prisoner has his identity taken away from him and is given a new indentity of No.6 which he rejects. Yet during the episode of The Schizoid Man the Prisoner is desperately trying to cling onto that identity, to prove that he is No.6!
10, The most industrious No.2 ever to have taken up office in the village is................the retiring No.2 in the episode It's Your Funeral, and the only No.2 to be able to leave the village in order to go 'on leave!'
11, Three former No.2's were brought back to serve once again in the village....Leo Mckern - Colin Gordon, and Kenneth Griffith.
12, Twenty-seven No.2's took up office in the village, including the twelve sub-divided No.2's standing on the local Town Council, and the once newly elected No.2 {No.6} in Free For All.
I'm Piet Hein