Clearly, there isn’t enough original science fiction to make as not only was V remade, but now The Prisoner.
If you have never seen the original version of The Prisoner, then I highly recommend that you watch it. The original show was part of this weird British sci-fi spirit that was popular in the sixties. If you watch shows like The Avengers, then you know what I mean.
I mean, the original show was weird to say the least. It was probably one of the first shows that I ever saw that didn’t give you all the information up front, and I believe that there were still some information that was never revealed after the show was over.
It was about a guy who’s name is never revealed, who resigns from his particular spy organization on the title sequence. (I’m pretty sure he was a spy, at least.) He is then gassed, and wakes up in an apartment that looks just like his own. On further investigation, he discovers that his apartment is just an exact facsimile, and he is stuck in a place simply called The Village.
The Village is a town on an island where everyone has a number and not a name. The main character is given the name 6, and he quickly discovers that everyone in The Village is either pretending (or truly convinced) that there is no outside world.
In short, the Village is a prison. It is led by someone who is known as 2, but the real question is “who’s number 1”.
By the way, 6 learns that if he tries to escape the Village, then you will be assaulted by this giant white balloon who will suffocate you into submission. Yes, that is weird, but it was the sixties, man.
Not to spoil the original series, but the ending doesn’t really make a lot of sense. In short, it was the sixties version of Lost.
This new miniseries takes the mystery of the original Prisoner and cranks it to 11. The style of the village has changed, but everyone is still a number.
Six is portrayed by Jim Caviezel, best known for playing Jesus in Mel’s The Passion of the Christ. Number Two is Ian McKellen, who has a history of playing iconic characters such as Magneto in the X-men series and Gandalf from The Lord of the Rings. McKellen does an excellent job of playing a complete dictator, always trying to convince 6 that he is crazy, and if he would just give in, everything would be fine.
Believe it or not, the big guardian balloon is still in this version, but added are these two glass towers. These towers look so much like the World Trade Center towers, that I couldn’t help why they would design them that way.
However, the real message of The Prisoner is in the remake, and it is that even the worst dictator cannot take our freedom away unless we let them.
If anything, it always inspires me in a world that wants to brush off Christianity. I always think of the original number 6’s line when I am tempted to give up.
I will not make any deals with you. I’ve resigned. I will not be pushed, filed, stamped, indexed, briefed, debriefed or numbered. My life is my own. I resign.