Recap / The Prisoner E 10 Hammer Into Anvil

Number Six vows to destroy a particularly brutal and sadistic Number Two.

  • Anachronic Order: The episode tends to fall into the middle pack of the series, except that fans view this as fitting more towards the end because by this episode - where Number Six is easily defeating Number Two - it's become obvious that not only is the Village failing to break Number Six, he's becoming dangerous.
  • Breather Episode: Despite its grim beginning, this ends up as a comedy episode with one of the show's happiest endings.
  • Call-Back: Also Fridge Brilliance. What Number Six does to Number Two - pretending to act subversive and scheming, forcing Number Two to investigate - fits the description of "Jammers" acting the same way in an earlier episode "It's Your Funeral" (depending of course on which order you're watching the series).
  • Driven to Suicide: What Number Two does to a distressed female Prisoner (who showed signs of a previous attempt) to drive her to jump out a window to her death.
  • The Easy Way or the Hard Way: Implied by Number Six's final gambit, where he tells Number Two to report himself with an obvious unspoken threat that it will go even worse for him if he doesn't.
  • Fate Worse Than Death: It's not a Karmic Death, but it's close enough: Number Six tricks Number Two into reporting himself for replacement, essentially turning a proud bully into a quivering wreck.
  • The Hunter Becomes the Hunted: Number Six turns the tables on Number Two, not only turning the master of the Village into his puppet, but accusing him during the final act of sabotaging the Village by interfering with Number Six's fake investigation. It works.
  • Hypocritical Humor: Number Fourteen angrily confronts Number Six in Six's bungalow while Six is smugly trying to listen to classical music as it's "soothing". The two proceed to have a drawn-out fist-fight wrecking every bit of furniture in the place while the calming music plays on.
  • Indy Ploy: Number Six does erratic, even nonsensical things during his gambit against Number Two. The thing is, Number Two thinks every move is genuine, even when the computers are telling him the inferred codes and hidden messages are meaningless.
  • Paranoia Gambit: Six acts as if he was planted by Two's superiors and is sending them cryptic messages questioning his loyalty; Two not only tears his hair out trying to follow the trail, but pushes away one colleague after another as untrustworthy. At the end, when Six points out that a loyal man would have left it alone:
    Two: Don't tell them. Don't report me.
    Two: *taking the phone* I have to report a breakdown in control. Number Two needs to be replaced. *beat* Yes, this is Number Two reporting.
  • Roaring Rampage of Revenge: Six doesn't like how Number Two abused a female Prisoner into committing suicide. So he plays a twisted game of Cat and Mouse using fake clues to convince Number Two he's being spied on by his own masters.
  • Sanity Slippage: What happens to Two. It's totally deserved.
  • Scenery Porn: Some of the shots of Number Six sneaking about the Village to engage his plot are some of the best in the series.
  • You Have Failed Me: As Six's plan against Two proceeds, the paranoid Two begins firing otherwise reliable aides - including the recurring Supervisor character and his own loyal Number Fourteen - convinced they are secretly working with Six. He evens threatens to harm the Butler, who silently walks away and packs up his suitcase to move out, abandoning Two during the final gambit.


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