As announced here a few weeks ago, The Prisoner made its return to UK screens on Friday June 11th, at 11.00pm as part of BBC Four's "Summer in the Sixties" season (which kicked off on June 5th with an excellent variety of programmes). The digital channel has also been broadcasting brand new trailers for the series, showing Number Six's scowl (a freeze frame from his walk along to tunnel prior to his resignation) on flickering primary-coloured screens. Played over these visuals are audio snippets from the title sequence; "I am a free man" etc.

BBC Four notified us of the plan:
"BBC Four will be showing the full series of The Prisoner as part of its Summer in the Sixties season this June. We plan to show two episodes back-to-back each Friday from 11 June at about 11pm, but your users will need to visit our website to confirm this closer to the time - our schedule is only definitely fixed 10 days in advance".

"We'll also be showing a documentary in our Time Shift series called Fantasy Sixties about TV of the era, which features The Prisoner".

A press pack from BBC Four has announced that the 'Summer inthe Sixties' season will feature a range of programmes focusing of various aspects of the decade. THE TRUTH ABOUT SIXTIES TV asks "Was British television in the Sixties really the golden age hailed by many commentators today?" while the category entitled FANTASY SIXTIES, which includes The Prisoner, is described thus:

"The Sixties were a boom time for adventure, sci-fi and fantasy in UK TV and film - a strange fusion of new-tech excitement, cold war preoccupations and a very British tradition of adventure storytelling. What made this such a fruitful time for the weird or escapist side of popular drama and film? And why was it so short lived? This Timeshift special goes into the unknown in search of answers..."

(Update: The Timeshift:Fantasy Sixties documentary was shown on Saturday June 26th).

Other categories in the season spotlight a variety of themes including Art and the 60's, Round the Horne Revisited, Vivian Stanshall, and an entire evening's schedule taking the viewer back 40 years, including highlights from ITV, BBC 1 and BBC 2, even including the weather forecast!

The Prisoner will also be shown in the USA on BBC America starting in July!

(Click HERE to go direct to the BBC's Prisoner site which serves as an excellent introduction to the world of The Prisoner. Various features include a message board where visitors can post comments pertaining to the show. There's also a competition to win Prisoner DVD's and a basic episode guide.)

UPDATE: The Prisoner concluded its run on BBC Four on Friday August 6th at 11.30pm, with the screening of "Fall Out".