AMC has upped its commitment to original series development, announcing Tuesday that it will remake the cult British series “The Prisoner.”
Although the cast has not been set, production of the one-hour series, a joint effort between AMC and the UK’s Granada and Sky One, begins in the spring.
The precursor to ABC’s Lost, the original Prisoner (1967-’68) starred Patrick McGoohan as a former secret agent who is held captive on a remote island by a sinister cabal of operatives whose motives for sequestering him are unclear. While AMC is pitching its remake as a Sci-Fi series, the original was never subject to mere genre conventions, informed as it was by game theory, paranoia and an existentialist ambiguity that had devotees scrambling for meaning throughout the course of its 17 episodes.
If you haven’t seen the original, you should try to find a copy — especially the final two episodes which featured the great British actor Leo McKern.
The show was produced at the height of the late-60s hippie, love-in, drug-raddled culture. The effect was a 17-epidode series riddled with hyper-paranoia and an all-encompassing suspicion of authority. Here’s McGoohan’s most famous quote from the show:
I will not make any deals with you. I’ve resigned. I will not be pushed, filed, stamped, indexed, briefed, debriefed, or numbered! My life is my own!
Click here to read more quotes from the show.