Sunday, January 18, 2009

No man is a number

One of our favorite shows was an old 60s British series called The Prisoner. "Favorite" may be not the correct word, as the series could be frustrating and sometimes downright confusing, but always intriguing and made you want to see what happens next. It is one of the tv series that influenced "Lost."

The series is centered on a man known only as "Number 6." He is a spy who suddenly decides to resign and is subsequently drugged and kidnapped. He wakes up in a mysterious town known as The Village, which is controlled by some sort of organization bent on discovering why Number 6 resigned. Are his kidnappers his ex-employers or the enemy? The Village is also populated by other Prisoners, who also have numbers assigned to them. All of these people want to escape this Village, but escape seems impossible, as no one can figure out where on Earth the Village is and there are mysterious things preventing their escape, like a mysterious white balloon (Lost Black Smoke Monster, anyone?). And everyone is suspect, as people constantly betray each other for the chance to be allowed to escape. The person in charge of the Village is Number 2 who claims to answer to a Number 1, who we are never shown and sometimes doubt exists (Lost Jacob and Ben).

Anyway, it's a very 60s series with psychedelic imagery. It's not for everyone, but it's worth a try.

The reason I wrote this post is that I found out the star and creator of the series, Patrick McGoohan, just passed away this week. I was hoping he would be alive for the new Prisoner mini-series, which will tentatively air in the fall on AMC.

Here are the extraordinarily long (by today's standards at least) opening credits:

Be seeing you!

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