Showing posts with label The Shadow. Show all posts
Showing posts with label The Shadow. Show all posts

Wednesday, 25 April 2018

Dark Masculinity

 I am Passion, The Libido. 

I am The Anarchy of Lust, 
The Romantic and The Lover. 

I am also The Warrior, 
The Perfect Line which never wavers. 

Dialog with my Shadow

Dark Man of my soul,

It is you I honor, you from whom all the energy of manhood originates and resides. 

I value the honesty of your feelings, rooted in the earth and in battle and in the hunt. 

Your anger is profound. 

Your need for action true. 

I applaud your sense of outrage and need for justice. 

Without them, where would we be? 

The dragons of our existence thrive without you to combat them. 

You embolden me to walk free, and live by my own code. 

You are my father and brother and truest friend.

This sword symbolizes who you are—what you mean to me and to the world. 

Strength. Action. Defense. 

The ability to cut away illusion. 

It represents the history of Men, blood spilt on the battlefield, which connects us all together.

Stay with me. 

Take your honored place in my soul and in my life.
Strengthen me with your power, and guide me with your earthy wisdom.


Fear of surrendering to the feminine
Controlling tendencies
Hatred (of self, other, an organization, of God/dess)
Entitlement issues (especially when insecurities arise)
Competition (coming from separation)
Taking what he wants without consent
Not listening to the feminine
Harshness–in language, touch, energy, etc
Mistrust and abuse of the feminine
Suppressing emotions/not expressing vulnerability
Neglecting the inner child/children
Underlying codependence issues with women
Denying the value of the feminine while taking advantage of her
Suppressed sexuality and sensuality/sexual shame
Inability to receive pleasure or abundance
Fear of abandonment, but not willing to admit it (even to self)
Tantrums/outbursts of rage
Acting out from the inner child while doing everything he can to look like a powerful leader

The Shadow-side of Male Virtue

Knightly confrontation.

There is a wild side to man's nature. Unpredictable. Savage. Easily frustrated and angered. We are taught from an early age to repress this part of us as something uncivilized and undesirable. Those of us who respect the law discipline ourselves to reject it. We go on with life ignoring what tendencies remain, channeling the overflow of aggression into "appropriate" conduits, such as ruthless competition in sports or business. 

     But in truth, the dark side of masculinity is never really gone or completely subdued. It follows us like a "shadow" (which C.G. Jung labeled it), dark and indescribable. Like a real shadow, it projects and distorts who we are.

     This is our personal darkness, filled with savagery we try not to recognize.

     It haunts us when we least suspect it—an angry phantom from our primitive core, maligned by moral propaganda, marginalized by repression.

     This frustrated shadow can subvert our best intentions—not because it is evil, but because we continually thwart its existence. 
We deny its proper role in our lives, and view it as uncivilized, something "bad." In effect, we provoke its rebellious discontent by shaping it into a monster when it might have been shaped into something different.

     This shadow is part of who we are as men. Without it, the chivalry we embrace becomes salt that has lost its flavor, an empty shell of moral dictates devoid of essence.

     Our shadow provides male virtue with the tension of having one foot in heaven and the other not in hell but here on earth. Its wildness defines our core. Without it, our personal self-discipline is meaningless, our strength inauthentic, our connection to the earth, which is our Mother, broken. We become the disappointment of heaven's grand design, severed from our roots, sapped of our virility.

     The shadow is an essential element to our every thought and deed as men. As such, it either substantiates or perverts our best intentions, depending on how we relate to it. It is that unrefined edge that distinguishes us from women, no matter how refined we shape ourselves. It connects us to nature. Without it, we are limpid, emasculated, not really alive. To the other extreme, when we fail to give it its proper role, we become discontent, brazen, uncontrollable, perverting the virtues we are meant to honor.

     When we deny our shadow, we urge it to wreck havoc with our lives. We wrestle with it, try to subdue it, only to learn that the struggle never ends. In this respect, the shadow always wins, but only as a dark influence rather than something that completes us. We cannot suppress it without losing the very heart of who we are.

     Chivalry, despite its refining virtues, directs us to embrace the wild center of who we are, recognize its intrinsic value, honor it not as an aberration, but as a natural source of male energy which borders (as all things of nature do) on amorality. It is here where the ideal warrior is fashioned in our hearts.

     Chivalry cannot eliminate or tame this wild excess of spontaneity, and does not try. Instead, it channels it throughout every fiber of our being, melds it to everything we do—and in the processing of doing so makes us whole.

     The wildness is self-destructive only when we reject it or hold it at arm's length. By infusing it into our lives, it nourishes the soul like nothing else can. Our shadow is not a thing of evil and perversion— although untended, it can produce both. We need this shadow to be complete, and it needs us as well. 

     It is imperative for us to find our shadows and integrate them into our lives. We might not be pleased what we find but remember, this is result of pure neglect. 

     Embrace him. Rescue him. And he will rescue you.

     There are several ways to do this. The simplest is through ritual, whereby we recognize and honor the wild man as a valuable part of who we are. Jung tells us that ritual is enough to heal the rift—the turbulence of the unconscious mind really asks for nothing more. We can add this ritual to our embrace of chivalry.

     The following is a short ritual to illustrate what I mean. Although it involves a sword as a ritual object, which is meaningful to me, you can and should build your own ritual as it best applies to you.

Dialog with my Shadow

Dark Man of my soul,

It is you I honor, you from whom all the energy of manhood originates and resides. I value the honesty of your feelings, rooted in the earth and in battle and in the hunt. Your anger is profound. Your need for action true. I applaud your sense of outrage and need for justice. Without them, where would we be? The dragons of our existence thrive without you to combat them. You embolden me to walk free, and live by my own code. You are my father and brother and truest friend.

This sword symbolizes who you are—what you mean to me and to the world. Strength. Action. Defense. The ability to cut away illusion. It represents the history of men, blood spilt on the battlefield, which connects us all together.

Stay with me. Take your honored place in my soul and in my life. Strengthen me with your power, and guide me with your earthy wisdom.

The Dark King: Archetype of an Emerging Masculinity
December 5, 2014

Our current culture has more opportunities for increased consciousness, personal growth, and collective healing than ever before imaginable.  This makes the 21st century a potent time for actualizing a shared vision of healing for both men and women so that violence and traumas from the past need not be repeated but repaired on both local and global levels.  In order for men to rise and meet their female counterparts as equals, however, I believe that many men must first make a necessary personal and collective  "descent" - away from "acting out" of places of shadow power and dominance, or "acting in" through impotence and castration - and into the origins of these deep and aching wounds.  This is the path that Robert Bly refers to as "the road of grief and ashes," and that I feel leads to a shared re-imagining of what it means to be in power with others, rather than under or over.

An archetype has emerged for me that speaks to such an integration and deepening of the shared capacities of the masculine soul.  I envision him as a "Dark King," an image with archetypal roots planted deep in the mythic soil of East and West, and that represents to me the possiblity of an emerging masculine consciousness that acknowledges and respects the differences of others while remaining deeply sourced in his own integrated life force.  This "dark masculine," or "Lunar King" is a re-imaging of the "Solar King" that we have known for centures:  a king of light who supposedly casts no shadow, a savior, a religious leader or political figure-as-god, who wounds others unknowingly because he does not touch his own darkness, believing that he casts no shadow, and unconscious of his own life's wounds.  This is a figure that we have all known too well, both culturally and historically, as well as in our own families, communities, and religious or spiritual organizations.

A "Dark King" represents a man who is master of his energetic and emotional domain. He knows his shadow because he has been re-born from within its dark, fertile womb. He respects women and honors the sacredness of the feminine because he has touched his own feminine essence and knows it as good.  He is neither a "soft" nor a "hard" man, but a man who works toward integration:  light and shadow, solar and lunar, masculine and feminine.  He is a man deeply sourced in himself who can be of service and good to his family, his friends, and the world around him.  

Archetypally, the resurrection and birth of a "dark masculine" King is foreshadowed in multiple mythologies.  Osiris, a central Egyptian male deity, is killed and dismembered by his evil counterpart and brother, Seth, the god of the desert, only for his parts to be retrieved and "re-membered" by Osiris' goddess-lover, Isis.  Their reunion results in the birth of a divine son, Horus, the bird-headed god, representing the Spirit of a new masculinity born from the union of a consciously re-membered masculinity and the healing capacities of dark feminine awareness. 

Similarly, in the imagery of the Black Madonna of Eastern and Western European consciousness, a black son, the Christ-child, is presented on the lap of his Dark Mother.  Here the union that births the divine child occurs between the Black Virgin, representing matter, embodiment, and the chthonic earth elements, and the masculine Spirit, who impregnates the fertile vessel of the dark feminine goddess, giving birth to a new masculine awareness represented by the black, or dark son. 

In both instances, a son, manifesting as a young king, emerges from the union or re-membering of masculine and feminine, and represents new possiblities of what it means to be a man in relation to his "darker" aspects - embodiment, sexuality, and emotionality - rather than opposed to or repressing these fundamental aspects of life.  This is a fertile masculinity born from the union of a man's conscious relationship to the dark aspects of the feminine as both Goddess and Mother, and his own archetypal relationship with Spirit.  It is this constant interplay between matter and spirit, human and divine, masculine and feminine, that births a new and conscious masculinity in the souls of both women and men.

Sunday, 10 September 2017

It's Old High Gallifreyan for 'Shadow'

You have your Guardian and I have mine. 
You and I are on the same quest, Doctor, but whereas you have been scavenging across space and time, I have located the sixth piece here. 


Your are inferior, just as your powers are inferior. 
Once we have the Key to Time, we shall set not two small planets but the two halves of the entire cosmos at war, and their mutual destruction will be music in our ears. 

Unlike others, it is not power we seek, but destruction that we glory in. 

Fetch the Key. 

Very well. 

DOCTOR [on screen]: 
Not like those innocents back on Atrios, you know. Time Lords sent by the Guardian to recover the Key to Time. 

I know who you are, Doctor.

I have always known. 

(An image of Shadow's face fills the tunnel.) 

I have been waiting for you. I too serve a Guardian. 
A Guardian equal and opposite in power to the one who sent you. 
The Black Guardian, He Who Walks in Darkness, and you are in The Valley of The Shadow. 

No, no, no! No!

(The Doctor appears to fall down a hole.)

[Shadow's lair]

K9 [on screen]: 
The Doctor is captured, Master.

You see, Princess, you cannot escape your destiny. 

My destiny. 

It is for this that you were born. 

The sixth child of the sixth generation of the sixth dynasty of Atrios. 

Born to be the sixth and final segment of the Key to Time. 

Come, Princess, prepare yourself. 

I am ready. 

(Astra reaches for the tracer, and turns into the segment.) 



(K9 blasts through the wall, disrupting the Shadow's ecstasy.) 

VALEYARD: What is this? 
K9: Apologies, master. 
VALEYARD: You mechanical idiot. 
K9: But there is an intruder here. 
VALEYARD: I ordered her to eliminate him. 
K9: It shall be done. 
VALEYARD: Wait. Where is the Doctor? 
(K9 trundles past the Key and turns to face the Shadow.) 
K9: Ahem. The Doctor and Drax have been eliminated. 
VALEYARD: Good. Then these two shall stay and witness my moment of glory, my apotheosis. 
K9: (sotto) Master. 
VALEYARD: Mine at last! 
(The Shadow reaches for the tracer.) 
K9: Now, master. 
(A panel opens in K9's side, and the Doctor and Drax jump out.) 
ROMANA: No, you'll break the time loop! 
MERAK: Millions will die! 
VALEYARD: A small beginning. Bwahahahahaha! 
DOCTOR: The stabiliser, Drax, now! 
(Drax restores the Doctor to normal height, then himself. The Doctor pounces on the sixth segment.) 
VALEYARD: You interfering fool. No one can resist the power of darkness! 
(The Doctor shines the light of the Key into the Shadow's eyes, and he recoils.) 
DOCTOR: Quick, back to the Tardis! Quick!

ROMANA: Right, I'll set the coordinates for Gallifrey, shall I? 

DOCTOR: Why Gallifrey? 

Well, that's where we're going, isn't it? 

We have the power to do anything we like. 
Absolute power over every particle in the universe. 
Everything that has ever existed or ever will exist. As from this moment are you listening to me, Romana? 

Yes, of course I'm listening. 

Because if you're not listening I can make you listen, because I can do anything. 

(The Doctor rolls his eyes back like a maniac.) 

As from this moment there's no such thing as free will in the entire universe. 
There's only my will, because I possess the Key to Time! 

Doctor, are you all right? 

DOCTOR: (normal) 
Well of course I'm all right. 
But supposing I wasn't all right. 
This thing makes me feel in such a way I'd be very worried if I felt like that about someone else feeling like this about that. 
Do you understand? 


What do you understand?

That the sooner we hand this over to the White Guardian

The better! 

(Dramatic organ chords, and the Guardian appears on the scanner, dressed in white.) 

GUARDIAN [on scanner]: 
My congratulations to you, Doctor. 

Oh, thank you, sir, thank you. 

GUARDIAN [on scanner]: 
You performed your task with admirable dispatch. 

The Universe has much to thank you for. 

Well, it was a pleasure, sir. Wasn't it a pleasure, Romana? 

Doctor, that's not the President. 

What's the President got to do with it? 

GUARDIAN [on scanner]: 
I can change my form or shape at will, my dear child. 
I appeared to you as the President so as not to alarm you. 

Just be careful who you're talking to. 

ROMANA: Sorry, I -

GUARDIAN [on scanner]: 
You have the Key to Time, Doctor? 

Ah. Oh, I have, I have indeed, sir. Do you like it? 

GUARDIAN [on scanner]: 
Do I like it? Yes, yes, I suppose you could say that I like it. 

Yes, we're very proud of it, sir. Aren't we, Romana, proud of it? 

What? Oh, yes, yes. 

What happens now, sir? 
You said, if I remember in our first conversation, that once it was assembled it would stop the entire universe and enable you to restore the natural balances of good and evil throughout the whole of the universe. 

GUARDIAN [on scanner]: 
That is correct, Doctor. 
So, will you release the Key to me that I may do this? 

Certainly, sir, yes, certainly, of course. 
Key to Time, I command you... 
Could I ask you something, sir? 

GUARDIAN [on scanner]: 
Yes, Doctor? 

It's just that, well, the Key is already assembled, sir. 
I mean, couldn't you restore the balances now? 

GUARDIAN [on scanner]: 
Yes, Doctor, but I must have the Key for safe keeping. It is an awesomely powerful key. 

Oh yes, sir, yes, and mustn't be allowed to fall into the wrong hands. I quite understand, sir, yes. 

Key to Time, I command. What about the sixth segment? 

GUARDIAN [on scanner]: 
What about it, Doctor? 

Well, I mean, as you know, sir, the sixth segment was in fact a human being, and I mean, if the pieces are maintained in their present pattern it means that she'll be imprisoned forever, sir. 

GUARDIAN [on scanner]: 
That is, of course, regrettable. 

Very regrettable. 

GUARDIAN [on scanner]: 
But with the fate of the universe at stake. 

Quite. You can't be too careful. 
I quite understand. 
Key to Time, I command that you stay exactly where you are! 

(The Doctor hits a TARDIS control.) 

GUARDIAN [on scanner]: 
Doctor! You have fully activated all the TARDIS' defences! 

We can't be too careful, can we? 
And it would be a terrible tragedy for the universe if it suddenly turned out that I was colour blind. 

GUARDIAN [on scanner]: 
Doctor, release the Key to me immediately! 

Unable to distinguish between the White Guardian and the Black Guardian. 

Doctor, what do you mean? 


(The Guardian snarls and turns into a negative of its former image.) 

Don't you see? The White Guardian would never have had such a callous disregard for human life. 


Of course. Astra, the sixth segment. 
He would have dispersed it immediately. 

GUARDIAN [on scanner]: 
Doctor, you shall die for this! 

I think not. Remember, the Key to Time is still mine, rage all you like.

GUARDIAN [on scanner]: 
I shall destroy you for this! 
I will disperse every particle of your being to the furthest reaches of eternity! 

Ah well, I wish I could stay and watch you try, but you know how it is. 
Places to go, people to see, things to do. Romana? 


When I give the signal 


(The Doctor reaches for the tracer.) 


(He takes the tracer from the Key.) 


(And snaps the tracer in two. The first five pieces of the Key hurtle off into time and space, and the sixth becomes Astra again.)

You see? I think of everything. 



What exactly have you done with the Key to Time? 

Key to Time? Oh, well, I just scattered it round through Space and Time. 

I see. So where are we going? 

Going? I don't know. 

You have absolutely no sense of responsibility whatsoever. 


You're capricious, arrogant, self-opinionated, irrational and you don't even know where we're going. 

DOCTOR: Exactly. 

ROMANA: What? 

DOCTOR: Well, if I knew where I was going, there'd be a chance the Black Guardian would, too. 


DOCTOR: Hence this new device. 

ROMANA: What is it? 

DOCTOR: Well, it's called a randomiser and it's fitted to the guidance system and operates under a very complex scientific principle called pot luck. 

(The Doctor sets the Tardis going.) 

DOCTOR: Now no one knows where we're going. Not even the Black Guardian. 

ROMANA: Not even us.

Sunday, 28 May 2017

At 6s and 7s : Various Theories

"Oh, dear. Yeah, well, we're all supposed to come from these things, you know. 

But the monkey thing was, according to various theories extant today, that we all come from the original ape, so I just used that as a symbol, you know. 

The bestial thing and then the other bestial face behind it which was laughing, jeering and jabbering like a monkey."

The following is an interview with Patrick McGoohan that was conducted by writer/TV host Warner Troyer. It took place in Toronto in 1977 in front of, and with the participation of, a studio audience. The 35-minute program was broadcast on TVOntario, a public television network which had shown The Prisoner series along with commentaries from Troyer from October 1976 to February 1977. The Ontario Educational Communications Authority also published a 21-page booklet on The Prisoner called The Prisoner Puzzle.


Troyer: I guess the first thing I should tell you is that your guest and mine is Patrick McGoohan. Mr. McGoohan, known familiarly to his friends as Number 6, was the creative force behind, the executive producer of, and in several cases the script writer of a series called "The Prisoner," which appeared on television a number of times, not least notably on this network. 

Mr. McGoohan has come here from Los Angeles to meet you and talk to you and to me. And to meet a group of Prisoner, ah, club groupies, some of them from Seneca College which has been operating a course based on the series, some of them from OECA, and some other people, and we're going to talk about "The Prisoner" and I suppose the obvious first question is: Where the hell did that idea come from? How'd you get started?

McGoohan: Boredom, was how it started.

Troyer: Just that? With T.V.? With society, or you?

McGoohan: With T.V. initially. I was doing a series that was called "Secret Agent." Was it called that here, or "Danger Man"? It had two titles.

Troyer: "Danger Man."

McGoohan: And I'd made 54 of those and I thought that was an adequate amount. 

So I went to the gentleman, Lew Grade, who was the financier, and said that I'd like to cease making "Secret Agent" and do something else. So he didn't like that idea. He'd prefer that I'd gone on forever doing it. But anyway, I said I was going to quit. 

So he said, "What's the idea?" This is on the telephone initially, so I met him on a Saturday morning at 7 o'clock. That was always the time we had our discussions, and he said "Alright, what's the idea?" and I had a whole format prepared of this "Prisoner" thing which initially came to me on one of the locations on "Secret Agent" when we went to this place called Portmeirion, where a great deal of it was shot, and I thought it was an extraordinary place, architecturally and atmosphere-wise, and should be used for something and that was two years before the concept came to me. 

So I prepared it and went in to see Lew Grade. I had photographs of the Village or whatever and a format and he said, "I don't want to read the format," because he says he doesn't read formats, he says he can't read apart from accounts, and he sort of said, "Well, what's it about? Tell me." 

So I talked for ten minutes and he stopped me and said, "I don't understand one word you're talking about, but how much is it going to be?" 

So I had a budget with me, oddly enough, and I told him how much and he says, "When can you start?" 

I said Monday, on scripts. And he says, "The money'll be in your company's account on Monday morning." 

Which it was, and that's how we started. 

Behind it, of course, was a certain impatience with the numerology of society and the way we're being made into ciphers, so there was something else behind it.

Troyer: Was that a personal thing in terms of your reaction to society or was it more of an observation? Do you feel you're being...

McGoohan: I think we're progressing too fast. I think that we should pull back and consolidate the things that we've discovered.

You didn't initially want to do 17 films?

No, seven, as a serial as opposed to a series. 

I thought the concept of the thing would sustain for only 7, but then Lew Grade wanted to make his sale to CBS, I believe (first ran it in the States) and he said he couldn't make a deal unless he had more, and he wanted 26, and I couldn't conceive of 26 stories, because it would be spreading it very thin, 

But we did manage, over a week-end, with my writers, to cook up ten more outlines
and eventually we did 17, 

but it should be 7.

Troyer: But you did ten in two days? Ten outlines?

McGoohan: Over a week-end, yes. Outlines, I mean a sort of...7 or 8 page format. (Troyer chuckles.)

Troyer: How would you have described or explained the concept of the series to those writers, the first time you sat down with them, what did you tell them?

McGoohan: It was very difficult because they were also prisoners of conditioning, and they were used to writing for "The Saint" series of the "Secret Agent" series and it was very difficult to explain, and we lost a few by the wayside. 

I had sat down and I wrote a 40-page, sort of, history of the Village, the sort of telephones they used, the sewerage system, what they ate, the transport, the boundaries, a description of the Village, every aspect of it; and they were all given copies of this and then, naturally, we talked to them about it, sent them away and hoped they would come up with an idea that was feasible.

Troyer: What about the philosophy, the rationale of the Village? What did you tell them about that? Its raison-d'etre, not its mechanics...

McGoohan: (very deliberatelyIt was a place that is trying to destroy the individual by every means possible; trying to break his spirit, so that he accepts that he is No. 6 and will live there happily as No. 6 for ever after. 

And this is the one rebel that they can't break.

Troyer: To what end was that process of breaking down the individual will?

McGoohanTo what end?

TroyerFor the Village, what was the purpose, the goal?

McGoohanI think it's going on every day all around us. I had to sign in to get into this joint! 

(Troyer: Uh-huh) Downstairs, yeah.

TroyerMade you angry, too? (Chuckle.)

McGoohanSlightly, yeah. Pass-keys and, you know, let's go down to the basement and all this. That's Prisonership as far as I'm concerned,and that makes me mad! 

And that makes me rebel! 

And that's what the Prisoner was doing, was rebelling against that type of thing!

TroyerBut can you, in everyday life, summon the will and the energy to rebel every time any indignity occurs?

McGoohanYou can't, otherwise you go crazy! You have to live with it. That's what makes us prisoners! You can't totally rebel, otherwise you have to go live on your own, on a desert island. It's as simple as that.

How much psychic attrition is there, spiritual attrition in not rebelling? 

How much do you give away or lose? 

How high is the cost of not rebelling every time?

Not complaining every time?

Ulcers, ulcers.

Do you have ulcers?

I have a couple.

Bad ones?

Not too bad. 
They're gettin' worse. 

Troyer: How many scripts did you write? Your name was on 2.

McGoohan: Well, my name was on and then I wrote under a couple of other names: Archibald Schwartz [ Genuine/Precious, Bold Dark-Complected Person (Black Irish?) ] was one and Paddy Fitz [ Paddy the Bastard ] was another.

Troyer: So how many all together?

McGoohan: I t'ink 5.

Troyer: Which ones? The last one...

McGoohan: The first one I re-wrote. It came out...not the way I wanted, and then the last one, I wrote. The penultimate one, I wrote. Free For All - another one, and then there was another one, I can't remember the name of it offhand. It's a long time ago.

Troyer: What's your response to what could really only be adequately described as a "cult" which has grown up around the series, a kind of mystique about it, here and in Europe?

McGoohan: I'm very gratified because, when it came out originally, in England, there were a lot of haters of it. A love/hate relationship, whichever way you look at it. Already there was a small cult. Now there's a much bigger one over there. 

In fact, when the last episode came out in England, it had one of the largest viewing audiences, they tell me, ever over there, because everyone wanted to know who No. 1 was, because they thought it would be a "James Bond" type of No. 1. 

When they did finally see it, there was a near-riot and I was going to be lynched. And I had to go into hiding in the mountains for 2 weeks, until things calmed down. That's really true!

Troyer: They were angry?

McGoohan: Oh, yeah! Walking around the streets, it was dangerous!

Why? Why were they angry?

Because they thought they'd been cheated. 
Because it wasn't, you know, a "James Bond" No. 1 guy.

It was Themselves.

Yes, well, we'll get into that later, I think. 
(Knowing laughter from Troyer
Come back to that one, that's a very important one.

D'ya know what's really interesting, to me, is a number of my friends and colleagues who watched the entire series told me, after the last show, that they were angry because they hadn't found out who No. 1 was. 
That went by quickly and they refused to acknowledge it.

That was deliberate. I forgot how many frames; I think there were 52 frames, or something, of the shot when they pulled off the monkey mask.

And No. 1's a monkey and then No.1's... Himself.
It was deliberate. 

I mean, I could have held it there for a good two minutes and put a subtitle on it saying, "It's him," you know. 

(All laugh.
But I thought I wasn't going to pander to a mentality so low that it couldn't perceive what I was trying to say, so you had to be a little quick to pick it up. 

That's all.

Troyer: What is your response to all the analysis and all the philosophising and criticism of the series? People have tried to make so much of it and to find so many levels of meaning, to parse it in so many directions.

McGoohan: I'm astonished! For instance, the beautiful presentation, the thing that you prepared for our good friends here, puts profounder meaning into many of the stories than I ever thought of.

Troyer: (Chuckling) Or more pompous?

McGoohan: (Automatically) Yeah. (Troyer chuckles again.) No! Oh, no, not at all. No, no. I think it's marvelous; I'm most gratified.

Troyer: Some questions...over here...

Girl: How did you feel about the response to "The Prisoner" when it was first shown in Britain?

McGoohan: Delighted. I wanted to have controversy, argument, fights, discussions, people in anger waving first in my face saying, "How dare you? Why don't you do more 'Secret Agents' that we can understand?" I was delighted with that reaction. I think it's a very good one. That was the intention of the exercise.

Troyer: Did you get any special kind of response from politicians, from bureaucrats, people in the kind of corporations we all know and hate?

McGoohan: Not enough. I suppose they steered clear of it. But then, of course, they'd be the very ones that wouldn't understand it.

Troyer: Uh-huh. Was there any one that was more fun for you than the other? Was it fun playing a Western?...a western hero for a few...(McGoohan: I, ah...) a few scenes?

McGoohan: I don't know what concepts you good folks have put on that one, but the reason for that, I'll tell ya, is because I wanted to do a Western. I'd never done one. And they'd never made a Western in England, and we were short of a story. (All laugh.) So we cooked that one up (McGoohan chortles), we wrote it in four days and shot it, ya know..
Troyer: It was harmless...

McGoohan: it was fun, yeah, it was fun. And takin' whatever you put into it, that's the reason for it. Then we sorta stuck the figures up and all that and put some other concepts in which have other levels, sociological levels, which you can take what you want out of them.

Troyer: Can you make a decent creative enterprise, build one, in any medium, without building it on several levels at once? However much of it is conscious or unconscious?

McGoohan: It's very, ah...a lot of it was conscious, in my case. Of course, other things happen. F'instance, a t'ing happened, the balloon thing, which has been made a great deal of...

Troyer: "Rover."

McGoohan: "Rover," yes. Now, the reason that happened, again, it's like the Western. This, ah...

We had this marvelous piece of machinery that was being built which was gonna be "Rover" and this thing was like a hovercraft and it would go underwater, come up on the beach, climb walls; it could do anything. That was our original Rover. 

By the first day of shooting, unfortunately, the engineers, mechanics and scientific genuises hadn't quite completed it to perfection. (Troyer chuckles.

And the first day of shooting, Rover was supposed to go down off the beach into the water, do a couple of signals and a couple of wheelspins and come back up. But it went down into the water and (laughter all around) stayed down, permanently. 

And then we had to shoot. We had Rover in every scene that day. So we had no Rover and Rover didn't look as though he was going to be resurrected at all. 

So we're standing there. My Production Manager, Bernard Williams (wonderful fellow), standing beside me, and he says, "What're we gonna do?" And he went like that and he looked up and there was this balloon in the sky. And he says, "What's that?" And I said, "I dunno. What is it?" He says, "I think it's a meteorological balloon." And he looked at me. And I said, "How many can ya get within two hours?", ya see. So he says, "I'll see." And he went off and he called the meteorological station nearby. And I did some other shots to cover while he was away and he came back with a hundred of 'em. He took an ambulance so that he could get there and back fast because it was quite a ways to the nearest big town. And he came back with them and there were these funny balloons, all sizes, and that's how Rover came to be.

And sometimes we filled it with a little water, sometimes with oxygen, sometimes with helium, depending on what we wanted him to do. And in the end, we could make him do anything: lie down, beg, anything (Laughter)...Really. 

We used about 6000 of them...

Troyer: Did you really?

McGoohan: Oh, yes. They're very, very fragile. They break very easily.

Troyer: So you'd lose a lot of scenes, then, when you were shooting in a boat...

McGoohan: We always had another one standing by, back-ups, all the time, yes.

Boy: What interested me was the style in which it was done and the whimsy and the hundreds of little touches, but from what you've been saying so far, they all seem to have been accidents. You know, the white balloon was a accident and you happened upon the Village...

McGoohan: Oh, yeah...

Boy: And it's, you know, incredibly lucky.

McGoohan: Yeah, but, no, no, no...There were these pages, don't forget, at the very beginning, which laid out the whole concept; these 40-odd pages laid out the whole concept. That was no accident.

No, but the little touches...

Those things come anyway.

But I haven't seen them come very often in any other series.

But they come because you're looking for them, you see. 

I was fortunate to have two or three creative people working with me, like my friend that I said saw the meteorological balloon. 

And wherever one could find these little touched, one put them in. 

But the design of the "Prisoner" thing, that was all clearly laid out from the outset.

Boy: And the style of the way...

McGoohan: And the style was also clearly laid out and the designs of the sets, those were all clearly laid out from the inception of it. There was no accident in that area, you know, the blazers, and the numbers and all that stuff, and the stupid little bicycles and all that.

Troyer: Was it a series, do you think, which had an appeal, a kind of narrow-gauge appeal, chiefly to people in the upper twenty percent of the intelligence quotient bracket or whatever?
McGoohan: Mostly intelligent people...such as we have here?

Troyer: Yeah, I meant that.

McGoohan: You see, one of the t'ings that is frustrating about making a piece of entertainment is trying to make it appeal to everybody. I think this is fatal. I don't think you can do that. It's done a great deal, you know. We have our horror movies and we have our science-fiction things. The best works are those that say...somebody says, "We want to do something this way," and do it, not because they're aiming at a particular audience. They're doing it because it's a story they think is important, and is a statement that they want to make. And they do it and then whoever want to watch it, that's their privilege. I mean, the painting in an art gallery, you know, you have a choice whether you go and look at this one or that one or the other one. You have a choice not even to go in.

Second Boy
One analogy that comes up, from literature, is with epic poetry, or with an epic. 

And "The Prisoner" seems to have all the qualities that belong to an epic, including the kind of structure which you ended up with: 
the thing that began with 7 parts and ended with 17.


Second Boy: 
There have been a few peculiar epic works which have done that sort of thing or been on the way, Spencer's "Faerie Queene" for instance, or Tennyson's "Idylls of the Kings" ...

"Idylls of the King" which became a 12-part non-epic with all the properties and qualities of an epic.

I have one question based on that perhaps peculiar observation, and that is: 
one of the figures in some of the epics, like the "Faerie Queene," is The Dwarf who accompanies Una and the Redcrosse Knight where the idea for Angelo Muscat come from?

Oh. I don't know. 
Where did that come from?

Second Boy: 
Is there a literary image...

 No, I certainly never thought of one. 
There were all sorts of interpretations to little Angelo. 

He's a very sweet man and...a very, very sweet man. It's this sort of...there should be something also--sinister about him. 

I mean, there was always the possibility that he might be No. 1. 

See, I don't know if you pick up that at all..? 

I don't know, but that...because he was such a good friend and always by the side of No. 6, that there was...should have been an implication that perhaps he was a sinister character, and particularly in the last episode, when he goes...he's the one that goes out with No. 6 and they go into the...

Maybe he's over No. 1 somewhere...

You know they have so...they have stars, superstars, and what are they gonna call them next? 


So what...maybe he's a comet or something, little...little Angelo.

 So there should be that remaining sinister thing about it.

Second Boy: 
I was just curious, because there were so many images of all...of all the figures that are in the series that are...that have literary connections, whether of not they're deliberate...
(McGoohan: Yeah.)
...deliberately connected or not doesn't really matter, does it? 
There might be an element...

No, I don't think...I don't think it does.

Second Boy
No, doesn't matter at all.

McGoohan: I don't think, in that sort of...I, I use the work "surrealistic" about it...thing, that one has to tie up all the loose ends. I think there's...that you...options are open for the beholder to interpret whichever way he likes.

Third Boy: Mr. McGoohan, my question deals with religion.

McGoohan: Yeah.

Third Boy: 
I understand, in reading a little about you, that you're a very religious man, and my question pertains to "Fall Out.

I have interpreted a lot of the acts as being...having this content. 

I'm thinking specifically of the crucifixion of the 2 rebels, of when their arms are drawn apart, the temptation of No. 6 by the President of the Village, of the temptation of Christ...

They give him the throne.

Third Boy: 
"Drybones," all of that. 
First of all, would you agree with my idea that that is intentional? 
That it is...

Ah, answering: No, 
I had never any religious inspiration for that whatsoever. 

I was just trying to make it dramatically feasible.

 Certainly the temptation with the guy putting me up on the throne and all this stuff,'s Lucifer time. 

But I never thought at that moment. 

Maybe somewhere in the back of my mind it was there, 
"And the hip bone's connected to the thigh bone" 

I just thought it was a very good song for the situation and also was applicable to the young man because, as you know, it's easy for us to go astray in youth and he was astray and he's trying to get everything together again.

Third Boy: 
When I speak of religion, I mean a moral attitude towards life.

I would think that's necessary, yeah.

Third Boy: 
OK, then, is it fair to say that No. 6 draws upon that? 

Is that the source of his defense? 

Is that how he gets up in the morning and faces another day in the Village?

I think that's a very good comment and I think that's probably true, yeah...

Moral force which says, 
"I have a spirit of my own, a soul of my own and it's not all my own because it's joined with a greater force beyond me." 

I don't think he got up every morning and analyzed it to that extent
but I think that that force is within him and anyone who is able to fight in that individual way.

Third Boy: Would you say that there is a distinct lack in the rest of the villagers? Are they soulless beings?

McGoohan: Ah, the majority of them have been sort of brain- washed. Their souls have been brainwashed out of them. Watching too many commercials is what happened to them.

Troyer: I used to think that television commercials were spiritually healthy because they made us skeptical and that that was probably a very good thing to learn very early on.

McGoohan: Well, they don't make enough people skeptical because if they made enough people skeptical, the people who were made skeptical wouldn't be buying all the junk that they're advertising and then they'd be out of business.

Fourth Boy: 
There's one sequence you do with Leo McKern where he says, "I'll kill you." 

You say, "I'll die," and he says, "You're dead." 

Is that a figure of speech or was there an underlying thing happening there?

Now you're talking about 'Once Upon A Time'?

Fourth Boy: 
Yeah, 'Once Upon a Time'.

Well, that was very interesting that one...(which was probably my favourite earlier on, Warner. That was probably it.) 
That was one that was written in the 36 hour period. 

And Leo McKern, who was a very good friend of mine and a very fine actor I think, came in on short notice to do it, and it was mainly a 2 hander. 

The brainwashing thing, he was trying to brainwash me and in the end No. 6 turns the tables. 

And the dialogue was very peculiar because all it consisted of was mainly "6, 6, 6," and 5 pages of that at one time. 

And Leo, one lunchtime, went up to his dressing room and I went to see the rushes and I knew he was tired. 

I went up to the dressing room to tell him how good I thought he'd been in the rushes. 

And he was curled up in the fetus position on his couch there, and he says, 
"Go away! Go away you bastard! I don't want to see you again."

I said, "What are you talking about?" 

He says, "I've just ordered 2 doctors," he says, "and they're comin' over as soon as they can." 

He says, "Go away." 

And he had! 

He'd ordered 2 doctors and they come over that afternoon and he didn't work for 3 days. 

He's gone! 

He'd cracked, which was very interesting.

He'd truly cracked. 

And so I had to use a double, the back of a guy's head for a lot and eventually Leo did come back and we completed them and also he was in the final episode, so he forgave me for everything, but he did crack, very interesting, I thought....

Troyer: Much as he cracked in that final episode.

McGoohan: Same, exactly the same.

Troyer: I was wondering about how much intensity there was in that. I know that acting is always an enormously intense experience but in that head-on 2 hander where there was so much dynamic pressure. 

Obviously, it was real.

McGoohan: It was 8 days shooting and for most of those 8 days we were head to head on from 8 o'clock in the morning 'til 6:30 at night with an hour for lunch. So, it was pretty intense. 

It was psychiatrist couch time, sort of thing.

Troyer: Were you a different person when you came out the other end of that series?

McGoohan: Tired, that's all.

Troyer: Beyond that?

McGoohan: No, no....

Troyer: It wasn't purely psychoanalysis?

McGoohan: No, no, I never let any part that I play sort of take over. I think that that's nonsense when that happens. I think you should be able to go in and do it, learn your lines and do it. Some are more fatiguing that others, some are more emotionally exhausting than others. 

I mean, you can't play Hamlet without being drained or King Lear without being drained but to say that you lived through the day playing Lear or playing Hamlet before you go out the next night and go on to the stage, I think that's ludicrous.

Troyer: What about the notions that some actors, some people in other creative endeavors have, that we all have a finite bank of energy that each time one brings some of it up there's a little less left for next time, or for the other end of the road.

McGoohan: I think that the contrary is true. When one looks at people such as Arthur Rubenstein, people with tremendous talents and they are young men. 

They're young men at 75, they're young, 80 they're young! 

Their vitality, in fact, increases. Their energy increases. It just happens, I mean the force. The adrenalin increases. It just happens that the machinery of the body, the parts, the spare parts are wearing out a little bit...I think it increases and I know a lot of old folks who are young, young people.

Troyer: So the creative urge is a muscle, the more we flex it, the stronger it gets.

McGoohan: I think so, yeah. Yeah. It's just this stuff wears out. That's all.

Fifth Boy: Mr. McGoohan, when you began "The Prisoner," you began it in a decade in which a lot of people were used to secret agents. 

You very neatly saw the next decade coming. I thing you saw Watergate; the enemy within as opposed to the enemy without. 

I don't know if you can answer this, but if you were going to do the series again and you had to look aged to the 80's and you were thinking in terms of what you see as being the real enemy, not the storybook enemy but the enemy that's really going to hassle us. If you were going to look into the 80's now, what would you look to?

I think progress is the biggest Enemy on earth, apart from oneself, and that goes with 1self, a 2-handed pair with 1self and progress. 

I think we're gonna take good care of this planet shortly. 

They're making bigger and better bombs, faster planes, and all this stuff one day, I hate to say it, there's never been a weapon created yet on the face of the Earth that hadn't been used and that thing is gonna be used unless...I don't know how we're gonna stop it, not it's too late, I think.

Fifth Boy: Do you think maybe there's going to be a strong popular reaction against "Progress" in the future?

McGoohan: No, because we're run by the Pentagon, we're run by Madison Avenue, we're run by television, and as long as we accept those things and don't revolt we'll have to go along with the stream to the eventual avalanche.

Sixth Boy: We tend to view the threat, the Village there, as sort of a thing as something external like Madison Avenue, the media. How responsible are we for accepting this? Where do we become involved in being "unfree"?

McGoohan: Buying the product, to excess. As long as we go out and buy stuff, we're at their mercy. We're at the mercy of the advertiser and of course there are certain things that we need, but a lot of the stuff that is bought is not needed.

Sixth Boy: 
Did you regard the Village as an external thing or as something that we carry around with us all the time?

It was meant to be both. 

The external was the symbol, but it's within us all I think, don't you? 

This surrealist aspect; 
we all live in a little Village.

Do we?

Your village may be different from other people's villages but we are all prisoners.

Well, I know who the idiot is in mine.

Yes, Number 1 - same as me.

7th Boy: 
Is No. 1 the evil side of man's nature?

 The Greatest Enemy that we have...

No. 1 was depicted as an evil, governing force in this Village. 

So, who is this No. 1? 

We just see the No. 2's, the sidekicks.
 Now this overriding, evil force is at its most powerful within ourselves and we have constantly to fight it, I think, and that is why I made No. 1 an image of No. 6. 

His other half, his alter ego.

Did you know when you first outlined the series in your own mind, the concept that No. 1 was going to turn out to be you, to be No. 6?

No, I didn't. 
That's an interesting question.

When did you find out?

When it got very close to the last episode and I hadn't written it yet. 

And I had to sit down this terrible day and write the last episode and I knew it wasn't going to be something out of James Bond, and in the back of my mind there was some parallel with the character and the No. 1 and the rest. 

And then, I didn't even know exactly 'til I was about the third through the script, the last script.

How about you colleagues, the other writers. 
Were they surprised?


Were they annoyed?


Did they decide it was untidy?

No, they used to come along from time to time and say, "Who's No. 1?" you see. 

And I told them , "It's a secret" until I actually sat down and wrote it - and it was, actually; they didn't know until I handed out the script.

But were they disappointed by that...?

No, they liked it. 
They said they always knew it was going to be him.

Troyer: (laughs
Once you told them.

A few of them did, really. 
Nobody really knew. No.

Troyer: Why the Double Mask? Why the monkey face?

McGoohan: Oh, dear. Yeah, well, we're all supposed to come from these things, you know. It's the same with the penny farthing symbol bicycle thing. Progress. I don't think we've progressed much. But the monkey thing was, according to various theories extant today, that we all come from the original ape, so I just used that as a symbol, you know. The bestial thing and then the other bestial face behind it which was laughing, jeering and jabbering like a monkey.

Eighth Boy: Mr. McGoohan, during the last episode, Fall Out, we see the Prisoner. He's smiling and laughing and dancing for the first time and yet later on the very last scene is exactly the some as the very first scene where he's driving off with his familiar stern face. My question is, has the Prisoner between the first and the last episode actually changed any?

McGoohan: Ah, no, I think he's essentially the same. I think he got slightly exhilarated by the fact that he got out of this mythical place and felt like doing a little skip and a dance, and singing a bit, and felt very happy to be going home with his little buddy, the Butler, you know. And we never did a cut of him when that door opened. We just saw the door open and he went in. So, you never knew whether his exhilaration was lost when he saw that sinister door that was left like an unfinished symphony.

Ninth Boy: In the final episode, does the Prisoner really consider becoming the leader of the Village?

McGoohan: No. He does not. He just wants to get out and he uses a technique which he hadn't used before that, which was violence, which is sad, but he does; and that's how he gets out and then, of course, in the final episode, he goes back to his little apartment place and he has his little valet guy with him and the door opens on its own when he goes in the car. There you know it's gonna start over again because we continue to be Prisoners.

Ninth Boy: 
And that leads to my last question, what would the Prisoner be likely to do with his newfound freedom?

He hasn't got it. 

Which is the whole point. 

When that door opens on its own and there's no one being it, exactly the same as all the doors in the Village open, you know that somebody's waiting in there to start it all over again. 

He's got no freedom. Freedom is a myth. 

There's no final conclusion to it. 

Ah, and I was very fortunate to be able to do something as audacious as that with no final conclusion to it because people do want the word 
put up there. 

Now the final 2 words for that thing should have been 

This is kind of a banal question, I guess, but if you could leave one sentence or paragraph in the head of everyone who watched the Prisoner series, the whole series, one thing for them to carry around for awhile, when it was over, what would it be?


Just that?...enigmatic to the end.

Be Seeing You. 
That means quite a lot.

It does indeed.

B C N U.