8.5/10
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The Prisoner 

After resigning, a secret agent is abducted and taken to what looks like an idyllic village, but is really a bizarre prison. His warders demand information. He gives them nothing, but only tries to escape.

Creator:

Patrick McGoohan
Reviews
Popularity
2,249 ( 64)

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Episodes

Seasons


Years



1  
1968   1967  
Top Rated TV #184 | 1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete series cast summary:
Patrick McGoohan ...  Number Six / ... 17 episodes, 1967-1968
Angelo Muscat Angelo Muscat ...  The Butler 14 episodes, 1967-1968
Peter Swanwick Peter Swanwick ...  Supervisor / ... 8 episodes, 1967-1968
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Storyline

"The Prisoner" is a unique piece of television. It addresses issues such as personal identity and freedom, democracy, education, scientific progress, art and technology, while still remaining an entertaining drama series. Over seventeen episodes we witness a war of attrition between the faceless forces behind 'The Village' (a Kafkaesque community somewhere between Butlins and Alcatraz) and its most strong willed inmate, No. 6. who struggles ceaselessly to assert his individuality while plotting to escape from his captors. Written by Stuart Berwick <berws@essex.ac.uk>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

No Man Is Just A Number.

Genres:

Drama | Mystery | Sci-Fi

Certificate:

TV-PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English | Russian | German | Romany | Spanish | French | Polish

Release Date:

1 June 1968 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

El prisionero See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

(17 episodes)

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In order to create their characteristic movement, the Rovers were filled with a mixture of air, helium and water. See more »

Goofs

The number and knocker on the outside of Number 2's front door change style and position both within and between episodes. See more »

Quotes

Number 6: Be seeing you.
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Crazy Credits

The closing credits of all but one episode end with footage of "Rover" (the big white balloon) emerging from the sea. The final episode, "Fall Out," omits this footage. The credits of the "alternate" version of "Chimes of Big Ben" don't use this footage either; instead, they end with a crudely animated earth exploding as the word POP fills the screen. See more »

Alternate Versions

A preliminary edit of the first episode, "Arrival", was broadcast by accident on one PBS station in the 1970s. Although the original negative of this edit has been lost, a videotape copy was discovered and released on DVD in 2002. Among the major differences from the officially broadcast version:
  • Different theme music and differently edited opening credits (same as the alternate version of "Chimes of Big Ben.")
  • Slight differences in the sequence where No. 6 wakes up in the Village for the first time.
  • A longer version of the sequence where No. 6 tours The Village by taxi.
  • When Rover is introduced, it does not kill a villager as it does in the televised version.
  • Longer version of the sequence where No. 6's radio-controlled helicopter returns to the Village.
  • Different closing credits, ending with an image of Earth and the universe turning into the pennyfarthing bicycle logo. Also, Wilfred Josephs is credited as musical director.
See more »

Connections

Spoofed in Prisoner of Love (1995) See more »

Soundtracks

Main Title Theme
Written by Ron Grainer
Performed by Ron Grainer Orchestra
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

An all-time great
15 June 2004 | by RNMortonSee all my reviews

Geez I just did another Imdb review listing some of the top ten tv shows of all time (in my opinion) and I plum forgot this one. It qualifies. 18 hourly episodes about attempts to pry information from taciturn retired spy McGoohan, kidnapped and held in an isolated village peopled by, well, we're not sure who else. There's maybe one bad episode in the whole lot; many shows have you wondering who are the captors and who are the captives among the village's inhabitants. Not sure it's explicitly stated but McGoohan's character could be a carryover from his Secret Agent Man, an earlier series also starring him. McGoohan is exquisitely perfect in the role, a bit eccentric, sometimes almost precious, athletic when necessary, crisply precise and (understandably) paranoid. Occasionally things go over the top, particularly in the final two episodes, but you certainly can't accuse them of playing it safe. Unique, inspired, insightful, distinctive, unparalleled.


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