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Patrick McGoohan, 1928-2009

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Patrick McGoohan, the creator/star of the brilliant and elliptical series The Prisoner, has died at age 80. His best-known work, which aired in the States on CBS, was a disturbing but engrossing mystery, exploring Cold War themes of paranoia and totalitarianism; in it, McGoohan played Number Six, a former spy who is imprisoned in a pleasant but inescapable seaside town known as The Village, without knowing who exactly is keeping him there or why. 

McGoohan’s death comes just as AMC is preparing a modern remake / reimagining of The Prisoner, to air this fall. And thanks to AMC, if you’ve never seen the original—which harks back to Kafka and anticipates later cult/conspiracy shows like Lost—you can watch it online now.