While Matt was visiting at the ha-hacienda last week, we sat down and watched The Prisoner episode 6, Checkmate. He opted not to say anything for the moment, preferring to let me dig my own grave. As with all of my other Digressions, there are SPOILERS ahead.
We open with 2 seeming stronger than ever as 6 is getting weaker. This is a plan to get 6 to accept his place in The Village by acknowledging his mortality and impending death (although it’s still not a plan to get him to reveal anything.)
Not everything was answered: Does The Village still exist, or will our new 2 have to rebuild it? Who was 2×6? Why was everyone spying on each other? This seemed to be more of a holdover from the original series than a necessity of the new one.
And none of addresses that the moral questions. Was 2 wrong? They were providing an environment for therapy to take place and releasing their “prisoners” at the end (the Villagers may have all been kidnapped, which makes it less of a gray issue).
All said, I really enjoyed the remake. Despite the fact that I wound up confused for some time thinking this was another spy story, trying to recreate the spy elements from the original would have been setting themselves up for failure. This version took the key elements from the original and made something entirely new and compelling. And if this remake wasn’t your cup of tea, the original is still there for you without the burden of continuity.
* A special thanks to my Dad for being able to track down the “pigger counter” poster.
** A double special thanks to everyone who’s found these digressions interesting. I didn’t actually think I’d post about every episode, but these Prisoner posts have been getting more hits than anything else I’ve written.