Patrick McGoohan passed away today. I’ve been a fan for a long time. In fact, I’m probably the only person in America who went to see Braveheart because I found out he was in it.
He left some really good work behind in assorted films and television appearances (his work on Columbo was really good and he got two Emmys for it), but I think my favorite McGoohan shows were Secret Agent and The Prisoner. Especially the Prisoner. He didn’t just star in it. He wrote and directed episodes (some under pseudonyms). The show was very much his baby. Nobody made anything like it before its debut in 1967 and I would argue that it’s never been equalled or approached since.
He will be missed.
This recent article in the Independent has one of my film listservs all riled up and I’m not entirely sure why.
I’ve seen this kind of reaction before and I still don’t get it. It’s as if someone else’s opinions were a personal attack. The worst that Thomson said was that Judy Garland’s acting was “adequate,” a criticism that isn’t exactly out there. She gave some amazing performances and her roles in movies like The Clock prove that. But let’s face it, she wasn’t exactly Kim Stanley.
Most of them have been vilifying the man. Thomson’s not exactly known for his kindness as a film critic (which is probably why I like him so much). His New Biographical Dictionary of Film is notable in that he tells it as he sees it.
I kind of like that.