(S01E17) The final episode of The Prisoner is arguably the most controversial and confusing finale to a television series ever filmed. If you've been watching the episodes over time and think you're going to get some sort of resolution with this final portion of the story, think again. I've viewed this series a number of times over the years and, frankly, I still don't totally get what Fall Out was all about.
(S01E16) It has come down to this. Number 6's captors have failed in every attempt to get him to tell them why he resigned. Since this is the second to last episode in the series, something has to give.
It doesn't take long to realize that this episode is going to be an interesting one because Leo McKern returns as Number 2. In my opinion, he is the best Number 2 because he just seems so comfortable in the role. As he returns, we can see that he is not happy to be there. It appears that he has been brought back to ascertain Number 6's reason for his resignation. Upon looking at Number 6's actions on the video screen, he asks angrily, "Why do you care?"
(S01E06) Despite their best efforts so far, the powers-that-be at the Village can't seem to break Number 6 and ascertain the reason as to why he resigned from being a spy. In this instance, the new Number 2 gets a call from (presumably) Number 1 who implores him to get information from Number 6. We see a clearly agitated Number 2 acknowledge to his boss that he "is not indispensable", so it would be safe to assume that more drastic measures will be taken to get Number 6 to talk.
We are then introduced to Number 14, an attractive female doctor who has developed a means to get Number 6 to talk via the combination of mind-altering drugs and dream analysis. In other words, Number 6 is knocked out and then placed on a table with electrodes hooked up to his head and the doctor administers a shot whereby we see his dreams on a television screen. Number 2 hopes that he can get the answer he is looking for so he can get Number 1 off his back.
Do not adjust your web browser. You are now entering the Retro Squad, where we are reviewing past episodes of your favorite shows, in order, every week.
(S01E01) "I am not a number. I am a free man!"
You can't get much more "retro" than The Prisoner, which first appeared on British television in the fall of 1967 and then in the U.S. about a year later. It starred Patrick McGoohan, who also served as the 17-episode show's executive producer. (You may remember him as the warden of Alcatraz in Escape from Alcatraz starring Clint Eastwood.)
When you watch this show, it seems other-worldly. Granted, it's nearly 40 years old, but it also was ahead of it's time, especially in the blending of technology into the stories. (Dig those cool cordless phones!) It also has influenced many television shows and movies (just do a Google search and you'll see what I mean). It's very difficult to talk about a show you've seen many times and have enjoyed for just as long without giving away too much, but let me set you up with the basic premise and take off from there.