Patrick McGoohan, star of our favorite 1960's tee-vee freakout (The Prisoner) has died. Like a proto-Gilliam fever dream, The Prisoner injects elements of surrealism, sci-fi, allegory and spy-action into a wholly singular vision of dystopia. At once silly and deadly serious, The Prisoner's gleeful opposition to mainstream squaredom is one of the few messages generated by 60's-era mass media that actually feels a little earnest. The show also inspired one of the best episodes of The Simpsons ever, on which McGoohan guest-stars as Number 6 and Homer is repeatedly gassed by a menacing, psychedelic koala.

As played by McGoohan, Number 6 is all lantern-jawed outrage, refusing to accept that a man might be reduced to just a number. His constant challenges to the authorities of "the Village" say more about individuality and resistance to assimilation than Abbie Hoffman ever could. Snappy dresser, too.

Be seeing you, Number 6.

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