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The Prisoner: Hammer into Anvil

When a young woman, Number Seventy-Three, takes her own life due to Number Two's efforts to break her, Number Six swears his revenge. He sets out on a campaign of misinformation in the hopes of pushing the already unstable Number Two over the edge. He plans to make the Village administrator think that he is an agent called D6 and that he is in the Village to spy on him.

Episode Info

Episode number: 1x10
Airdate: Sunday December 10th, 1967

Director: Pat Jackson
Writer: Roger Woddis

Alternate Airdates:

USA Aug 31, 1968

  • Currently 6/10
6/10 (1 Vote cast)
Guest Stars
Patrick Cargill
As Number Two
Angelo Muscat
As The Butler
Peter Swanwick
As The Supervisor
Jackie Cooper (2)
As First Guardian
George Leech
As Fourth Guardian (as George Leach)
Victor Maddern
As Band Master
Basil Hoskins
As Number Fourteen
Norman Scace
As Psychiatric Director
Derek Aylward
As New Supervisor
Hilary Dwyer
As Number Seventy-Three
Arthur Gross
As Control Room Operator
Victor Woolf
As Shop Assistant
Michael Segal
As Laboratory Technician
Margo Andrew
As Shop Kiosk Girl
Susan Sheers
As Female Code Expert
Fred Haggerty
As Second Guardian
Eddie Powell
As Third Guardian
Main Cast
Patrick McGoohan
As Number Six


At the Village Hospital, Number Two is asking Number Seventy-Three why she slit her wrists. She denies being unhappy there but insists there's nothing she can tell him about the location of her husband. Number Two questions her husband's feelings for her and notes he's been seen with another woman. He has photos of her husband with the other woman but Number Seventy-Three refuses to say anything. Number Two moves in on her, and outside Number Six hears her scream. He comes running in just in time to witness Number Seventy-Three leap to her death. Number Two warns him that he'll pay for interfering, but Number Six responds by warning that he will...

Read the full recap
Episode Notes
Patrick Cargill (Number Two) had previously portrayed Thorpe in "Many Happy Returns". It is possible that they are intended to be the same character.

The strange combat game kosho, devised by Patrick McGoohan himself, is introduced in this episode but given its limited screen time it is likely that the next episode "It's Your Funeral", in which it plays a much larger role, was filmed and intended to air first.

The filming of this episode began on March 18, 1967. Patrick McGoohan turned 39 the following day.

Episode Quotes
Number Two: You shouldn't have interfered, Number Six. You'll pay for this.
Number Six: No. You will.

Number Two: We have things to discuss.
Number Six: About the girl you murdered?
Number Two: Oh, never mind the girl. I want to talk about you.
Number Six: You're wasting your time. Others have tried.
Number Two: Amateurs.
Number Six: You're professional. A professional sadist?

Number Two: (to Number Six) Every man has his breaking point, you know. And you are no exception.

Number Two: What is going on up there?
Number Six: Disgust.
(Number Two hits him)

Number Two: You are too strong. We'll see. <em>"Du musst amboss oder hammer sien."</em>
Number Six: "You must be anvil or hammer."
Number Two: I see you know your Goethe.
Number Six: And you see me as the anvil?
Number Two: Precisely. I am going to hammer you.

Number Two: (angrily) I'll break you, Number Six!
Number Six: Yes.

Number Two: I have nothing to say.
Number Six: That's not like the old Number Two. Where is the strong man? The hammer? You have to be hammer or anvil, remember?
Number Two: I... know who you are.
Number Six: I'm Number Six.
Number Two: D-6.
Number Six: D-6?
Number Two: Yes. Sent here by our masters to spy on me.
Number Six: Sorry, I'm not quite with you.

Number Two: You destroyed me.
Number Six: No.. you destroyed yourself. You destroyed yourself. A character flaw. You were afraid of your masters. A weak link in the chain of command waiting to be broken.
Number Two: Don't tell them... don't report me.
Number Six: I don't intend to. You are going to report yourself.
Number Two: (taking the phone) I have to report a breakdown.. in control. Number Two needs to be replaced. Yes, this is Number Two reporting.

Episode Goofs
When Number Two calls Number Fourteen a traitor during his temper tantrum, he hangs his head down where his hair comes unkempt, but in the next shot his hair is all slicked back again.

At this point, Number Six is no longer interested in escaping and takes on the role as protector of the Village citizenry. Instead of trying to escape, he spends his time bringing down a Number Two to make sure that justice is done. There's no particular reason to believe he knew the dead woman but his sense of justice prevails.

Other Episode Crew

CreatorGeorge Markstein  |  Patrick McGoohan
Executive ProducerPatrick McGoohan
ProducerDavid Tomblin
EditorLee Doig
CastingRose Tobias Shaw
First Assistant DirectorGino Marotta
MusicRon Grainer
Music EditorEric Mival  |  Albert Elms
Costume DesignerMasada Wilmot
HairstylistPat McDermot
Make-upEddie Knight (1)
Camera OperatorJack Lowin  |  Robert Monks
Set DecoratorKenneth Bridgeman
Director of PhotographyBrendan J. Stafford
Story EditorGeorge Markstein
Art DirectorJack Shampan
Production ManagerBernard Williams
Sound EditorKen Rolls  |  John Bramall
Warning: The Prisoner season 1 episode 10 guide may contain spoilers
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