Saturday, April 26, 2014
Patrick McGoohan: The Spy Who Started It All
Susan King at the Los Angeles Times offers a piece on one of my favorite actors and one of my favorite TV programs, Patrick McGoohan and The Prisoner.
There's never been a TV series quite like "The Prisoner," which premiered in England in 1967 and debuted in the U.S. the summer of 1968 on CBS.
Best described as James Bond meets George Orwell filtered through Franz Kafka, the cult series revolved around a British secret agent (Patrick McGoohan) who wants to resign from the service. Deemed too dangerous to retire, they kidnap him and send him to an idyllic, though completely isolated, seaside resort called the Village.
There residents are assigned numbers instead of names and their every movement is followed by monitoring systems and security forces. And if someone tries to escape, they encounter a mysterious white balloon called Rover.
For 17 brilliant, surreal episodes, McGoohan's No. 6 was in constant battle with No. 2, a revolving door of henchmen who did the bidding for the unseen leader, who is naturally No. 1.
"At the time, it was so original and unique," said McGoohan's daughter, actress Catherine McGoohan. "It completely took the secret agent spy story to a different level."
You can read the rest of the piece via the below link:
You can also read an earlier post on Patrick McGoohan via the below link:
Note: I'm also a huge fan of Patrick McGoohan's earlier TV series, Secret Agent (Danger Man in the U.K.). I purchased the DVD complete collection and over the course of this past year, I watched all of the Secret Agent episodes. Secret Agent is an intelligent, cool and clever show that holds up after all these years.