Friday, 3 June 2011

A Brave New Village

    It is not at all easy to sit here, quill in hand, and a blank sheet of paper upon the desk before me. Certainly not when hundreds upon hundred of articles must surely have been written on the subject of the Prisoner. Someone once said, I forget who it was, that everything that can be written about the Prisoner has been written. The trick is these days, is to try and come at the Prisoner from a different angle, and that is what scriptwrier Bill Gallagher successfully did with THEPRIS6NER. Although the 2009 series is not to everyone's taste, I believe there is much within the series that every fan of the Prisoner can appreciate, as there is much of the original series in the 2009 series. It's just been reinterpreted, or reinvented, what's more THEPRIS6NER is more sutble than the original series, you have to give it a chance that's all.
   With McG's series of the Prisoner you have so much to come to understand, so much is left to interpret, there is no one satisfactory conclusion, and questions have been left unanswered. Not so with Bill Gallagher's seires of THEPRIS6NER, because there are a series of clues to follow throughout the whole six episodes, and the first clue is in the opening scene. Follow the clues, put them all together, and by the end of the last episode Checkmate, you are left with no doubt at all of what THEPRIS6NER is all about. Even then I was left wanting more, to know what the new Two's Village would be like in the unconscious mind of 313. Would Six, the new Two, be able to find a better way? Would he be able to build a better Village? Or would he fall into the same trap as Two? Of course that is the driving pulse behind THEPRIS6NER, the handing over of the Village by Two to Six. Okay, with Bill Gallagher you know what his series is all about. It is not a remake. It was never intended to be a remake. And AMVtv never once described the series as a remake. and as I have stated the viewer is left in no doubt whatsoever what THEPRIS6NER is all about. Well you wouldn't want to be put through the ringer for a second time, not the way Patrick McGoohan did the first time...... would you?
    With the original series there could be 1,100 different interpretations of what the Prisoner is all about, and each one could be the genuine article. But with THEPRIS6NER there is nothing left to interpret. There are no unanswerd questions.........well you might think that, those of you who actually watched the series from the moment the Prisoner woke up in the desert somewhere, to the moment 313 shed a tear, as Six was imagining a brave new Village. Questions such as the old man, 93, whom the Prisoner helped, and who died out there in the desert. He was wearing an old style piped blazer, and as far as I can see, was the only citizen in the new Village to do so. Where did he come from, and where did he go having suffered a Village death, back to his former life in that 'other' place. Yes, but which 'other place,' which former life, in London or the former Village, to remain still a prisoner?
   Curtis and Helen esaped the Village. Originally Curtis and Helen volunteered for the Village experiment because they saw it as a way and means for them to have a child. But that child murdered his mother, then comitted suicide. Curtis and Helen, back in New York had lost their son. they are two broken people. And it is broken people who are subconsciously brought to the Village to be made better. So, would Six and 313 bring Curtis and Helen back to the Village to be made better? Now that's something to speculate over!
    Holes begin to appear in the Village everytime M2 is awake. To help stop the people of the Village panicing, citizens are encouraged to 'Keep A Pig,' because it is said that pig breath can stabilise the Village. But surely pigs dig holes themselves. They ruttle about for truffles with their snouts!
    And then there is the question of those pig masks........worn by members of 16's family towards the end of the episode of Harmony. The pig masks are worn in the American transmitted epsiode, but not in the United Kingdom transmission. Nor do the pig masks appear in the episode of Harmony in ITV's box set.....why is that?
    There are 'dreamers'in the Village, dreamers who dream and remember another place, other than the Village, New York in the case of 554 and Six. That is because those who are brought to the Village are living two existences, one in the Village, and in that 'other' place. But when living in that 'other' place, do they dream of the Village?
   So you see, there are some unanswered questions after all. there is something for everyone in THEPRIS6NER, if only those who poo-pooed the series in the first place, would now give the series a second chance. Even if THEPRIS6NER had left no unanswered questions whatsoever, the series is still a treat to watch, entertaining, somewhere to escape to.
I'm Piet Hein

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