Song Of The Day 10/7/2016: The Times – “I Helped Patrick McGoohan Escape”


Patrick McGoohan was an actor. His most famous role was Number Six from the groundbreaking British miniseries The Prisoner which aired in 1967. McGoohan also created the show. It's about a spy who quits his job in spite, gets knocked out by a chemical attack in his flat, and wakes up to find himself in a mysterious seaside resort called "The Village." But it's not really a seaside resort: it's a prison. His character, unnamed, is assigned the name Number Six. Everybody in the prison -- including non-prisoner employees -- is given a number to mask their identities and thwart the possibility of alliances. Everyone's monitored in the prison by a giant balloon called Rover who kills those who attempt to escape. Number Six's main nemesis is Number Two, who's played by different actors throughout the run of the series to obscure his real identity. Number Two tries to pry information about Number Six's career and possible secrets he might possess. Number Two's working under the stewardship of Number One, who is never seen in the series. The Prisoner was hugely influential, bringing themes of the counter-culture, individualism and surrealism to the TV screen. I've never seen it. I'm sure it's very good. Bands like Iron Maiden did songs about The Prisoner. An Italian rapper made a video of him being chased around by a Rover-type device. The Times apparently took it upon themselves to intervene, which was helpful.

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