Tag Archives: The Prisoner

Is That Ian McKellen?

1 Apr

April 1, 2017

Sir Ian McKellen, in addition to being one of the great actors of our time, is also one of the most recognizable. This is partly due to his roles in a pair of hugely popular franchises.

As Magneto in the X-Men franchise

As Gandalf in The Lord of The Rings

So it was a surprise when, after sitting through Disney’s new, live-action Beauty and the Beast movie that I discovered that Ian McKellen had a prominent role in the story. He played Cogsworth the clock and the vast majority of the part was just voice-over work. I didn’t recognize his voice- in fact, I was sure I did, but I didn’t think it was McKellen. I thought it was either Leo McKern (better known as Number Two in The Prisoner and as Rumpole of the Bailey) or the guy who played Mr. Tebbs on Are You Being Served, an old BBC sitcom from the 70’s. Problem is, both men died decades ago.

And when the clock turned back to a human at the end of the film (spoiler alert!- oops, too late) and Ian McKellen appeared in person, not only did I still not recognize him but I was more sure than ever that he was either McKern or James Hayter (Mr. Tebbs from Served.) Take a look at Magneto above and Cogsworth below and tell me if any of you would have recognized McKellen.

Separated at birth?

Now take a look at the other men. Is it any surprise that I thought that it was either of them? I have to hand it to Ian McKellen. He is such a good actor that I was prepared to believe that it was anyone but him in the movie. Even a couple of dead men.




Imponderable #37: Switzerland

24 Feb

February 24 1012

Are a fan of 1960’s British TV spy drama? Of course you are! Who isn’t? If you are anything like me, and heaven help you if you are, the following story out of Switzerland may strike you as a bit sinister.

This is The Village! You remember the Prisoner, right? Patrick McGoohan was a former spy, known only as Number Six, who was kidnapped and brought to a mysterious village- just like the one in the article!- where he was subjected to psychological torture and bizarre experiments to break him down and discover the secret of why he retired.

Don’t know this show? It is only 17 episodes, go see it! Heck, here is the entire first episode:
(Don’t tell me you don’t have an hour to spare, watch it!)

Is it a good idea to round-up Alzheimer patients and subject them to mental torture in an attempt to break their wills and terrorize them with a giant balloon?

The question is Imponderable.

Imponderably contrived, that it.

And while we’re at it, here is episode two:

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