Number Six answers his phone and finds Number Two on the other end. Number Six isn't interested in chatting and hangs up, but Number Two appears immediately on his doorstep. Number Six demands to see Number One but Number Two deflects him. A maid, Number Fifty-Eight, arrives with breakfast and Number Two says she used to work in records and has a photographic memory. They talk to each other in a foreign language and she leaves. Number Two informs Number Six they start their yearly election campaign and asks if Number Six is going to run for the position of Number Two. Number Six is skeptical and they're interrupted when a fanfare blares over the speakers. Number Two goes to the window balcony and a crowd of Villagers carrying placards urging citizens to vote for Number Two. Number Two notes that some of the citizens feel the entire thing is a game and they need Number Six as a candidate.
Number Two takes Number Six outside and the Villagers cheer as they drive through the streets to the Village Square. Number Two addresses the crowd, pointing out that the Villagers are accepting things as they are and they need a new recruit who wishes to run. He presents Number Six to the Villagers and he speaks about individuality and why they are all there. They initially laugh but start to sober as Number Six questions who are prisoners and who are warders. He announces his candidacy and the crowd cheers and immediately reveals placards for Number Six. Number Two leaves as Number Fifty-Eight arrives on a cart and the Villagers bear him away.
Later at his flat, Number Six finds Number Fifty-Eight waiting for him. He demands that she go away but Number Two informs him that isn't possible. Number Six is expected to attend the dissolution of the outgoing council at the Town Hall. Number Fifty-Eight tries to take him but when she can't understand what he's saying, he walks to the Town Hall. She catches up to him on the street as he looks for directions and plays with the board, figuring out what he means. He goes with her in the cart and a reporter and photographer, 113 and 113b, leap aboard and ask meaningless questions and provide their own answers. They arrive at Town Hall and Number Six finds an issue of the Tally Ho
newspaper with his comments already included.
As a guardian sphere appears outside, Number Six is summoned into Town Hall and guided to the council chambers. Number Two directs him to the center dais and insists that they follow proper procedure. Number Six reluctantly gives in and the council gives Number Six a vote of thanks. Number Two informs him that the council was here when he arrived and Number Six asks to question them. He questions their representation and their allegiances, but Number Two warns him not to ask personal question. A spotlight shines down on Number Six, who challenges the entire process. Number Two calls for order but Number Six ignores him and challenges the council to think. The spotlight shines down again and Number Two questions Number Six's desire to run. The dais starts to spin and Number Two says he must undergo the test.
The dais descends into the floor and a dizzy Number Six staggers down a corridor into a chamber where the Labour Exchange Manager greets him. He offers tea and informs Number Six they know everything from his records. Number Two observes and is pleased, and reports to his superiors that Number Six temporarily got out of hand. He assures them he'll be more careful and will tell his underlings not to damage the tissue. He calls the Labour Exchange Manager and tells him to employ first stage only. The Labour Exchange Manager immobilizes Number Six in his chair and then applies a truth test to determine why he wished to run for office. Number Six, dazed, thinks the answer but the machines can read his mind and know when he's lying and when he's telling the truth. The Labour Exchange Manager notes that Number Six planned a breakout but it was a mistake and he's really on the side of the people. Number Six is brainwashed to agree with him and then passes out. The Labour Exchange Manager is satisfied and a smiling Number Six thanks for him and asks him to vote for him. A band greets Number Six outside and everyone cheers as he addresses the crowd and gives them generic political comments.
Number Six enters full swing into his campaign as Number Fifty-Eight accompanies him everywhere he goes. She still doesn't speak English or seem to understand what he says, and he finds himself speaking in her language without understanding it. He snaps at her as she salutes him over and over again and he yanks off his electoral badge and drives away in a panic. He finds a crowd awaiting him and runs through the streets to the beach but can't find any escape from the crowds. A helicopter closes in on him and he steals a motorboat. Two men leap in after him as Number Two in the helicopter follows. The three men struggle and one is knocked overboard. The other one knocks Number Six over but Number Two tells the man to not do anything rash. Distracted, Number Six pulls the man into the water and drives away. Number Two warns him via loudspeaker to turn back before it's too late, and then summons a guardian sphere. The boat controls fail to respond and Number Six jumps overboard. He passes out and the guardian sphere tows him to shore as he recites political speeches.
Number Six is taken to the hospital, treated, and returned to his flat where he undergoes additional programming. Soon he is out campaigning again, making impossible promises as the crowd cheers him on. Number Two's crowds dwindle while people swarm to Number Six's side. When the two campaigns cross paths, Number Six insists they have a right to leisure. Later, Number Six and Number Fifty-Eight go to the Cat & Mouse pub but there's no real alcohol to be had. Number Six orders the waitress away and tells Number Fifty-Eight to get him an alcoholic drink. She doesn't seem to understand and he snaps at her, then starts drunkenly singing. She gets him out and drives him to the beach, and he demands to know if she's spying on him. She directs him to a cave and runs off. Number Six goes in and finds a crude pub with a man running a still. Number Two is there, seemingly drunk, and admits that he's scared about what may happen to Number Six. He says the cave is the Therapy Zone and that the authorities are clever enough to give people a chance to get drunk in private before rejoining the community. They share a drink and Number Two explains that the barkeeper is a scientist who scribbles down formulas that they photograph. Number Six collapses and Number Two immediately sobers. The barkeeper informs him the portions are exact and will take Number Six through the election.
The day of the election arrives and Number Six is elected in a landslide. Number Two casts his vote for Number Six and gives him the badge of office. They go outside and Number Fifty-Eight drives them to the Green Dome. Number Two takes Number Six inside and tells him he's the boss, then salutes Number Fifty-Eight and departs. She goes into Number Two's office and beckons Number Six inside. Together they play with the buttons and she laughs with glee. The lights start to flash and Number Fifty-Eight takes him by the hand and directs him to a screen with hypnotic patterns. She says "tick tick" and takes away his badge of office, and then slaps him repeatedly. He staggers backward, snaps out of his programming, and runs for the console, telling everyone to leave as he immobilizes the electronic controls. The Villagers ignore him and two guardians arrive to capture Number Six. He throws them off and flees into the cavern, where he finds Villagers seemingly worshipping a guardian sphere. The guardians attack Number Six and they eventually subdue him, and the other men mercilessly beat him into unconsciousness..
Number Six is dragged back into the control office... and finds Number Fifty-Eight waiting for him, wearing the badge of Number Two. She speaks in English and tells him that this is only the beginning, She ask if he's ready to talk but he says nothing. The guardians take him away on a stretcher and return him to his flat. The new Number Two assures the departing Number Two that everything went according to plan and to give her regards to the homeland.