May 31, 2021
It seems Patty McG had softened his "don't call it television because television cuts corners and we'll never ever do that" position by the time of The Prisoner's much-abbreviated second and final season, because for most of the production of this week's episode he decided his time would be better spent in Los Angeles co-starring in John Sturges' unmemorable 1968 thriller Ice Station Zebra with Rock Hudson, Ernest "Resistance Is Futile" Borgnine, and Jim Brown.
"Chimes of Big Ben" screenwriter Vincent Tilsey got the unenviable job of coming up with a Prisoner story that would require neither the show's star nor its key location, Portmerion in North Wales. He came up with a brain-swapping scenario that would allow hardworking actor Nigel Stock to play Number Six. Upon his return from the States, McGoohan demanded extensive changes to the show that had been made in his absence. But he did not demand that Stock un-kiss Six's left-behind fiancee Janet (Zena Walker), who was never mentioned prior to this episode and shall never be again. Also, the head of MI6 was going to be SIx's father-in-law, apparently. Script editor George Markstein was long gone by this point and no one was minding the store.
The mailbag overfloweth this week, so we moved the listener mail segment to the back half of the episode. Thank you for your correspondence.
"Do Not Forsake Me, Oh My Darling"
Written by Vincent Tilsley
Directed by Pat Jackson
Original airdate December 22, 1967
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