The Second Coming by William Butler Yeats
This article was contributed by Graham P. Smith and relates to the episode Pilot of Chris Carter's Millennium television series.
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A vicious serial killer is on the loose in Seattle, roaming strip clubs and gay hang-outs, believing he is on a mission to cleanse the plague-infested city from sin in preparation for the apocalypse. At the same time, renowned FBI profiler Frank Black retires to Seattle with his family as he gains membership in the secretive Millennium Group. He soon realizes that he must be the one to bring closure to the so-called Frenchman’s grotesque crimes, before further innocents are brutally killed.
Written by Chris Carter
Directed by David Nutter
Edited by Stephen Mark
Awards and Nominations
People's Choice Award 1996:
Millennium - Best new television dramatic Series (Winner)
American Society of Cinematographers Award:
Pete Wunstorf - Outstanding Achievement in Cinematography in a Pilot (Nominee)
The Second Coming by William Butler Yeats
During the Pilot episode of Millennium, the serial killer known as The Frenchman makes several quotations from William B. Yeat's The Second Coming:
The Second Coming
TURNING and turning in the widening gyre
The falcon cannot hear the falconer;
Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;
Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,
The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere
The ceremony of innocence is drowned;
The best lack all conviction, while the worst
Are full of passionate intensity.
Surely some revelation is at hand;
Surely the Second Coming is at hand.
The Second Coming! Hardly are those words out
When a vast image out of Spiritus Mundi
Troubles my sight: somewhere in sands of the desert
A shape with lion body and the head of a man,
A gaze blank and pitiless as the sun,
Is moving its slow thighs, while all about it
Reel shadows of the indignant desert birds.
The darkness drops again; but now I know
That twenty centuries of stony sleep
Were vexed to nightmare by a rocking cradle,
And what rough beast, its hour come round at last,
Slouches towards Bethlehem to be born?
~ William Butler Yeats
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia:
"The Second Coming" is a poem by William Butler Yeats first printed in The Dial (November 1920) and afterwards included in his 1921 verse collection Michael Robartes and the Dancer. The poem utilizes religious symbolism to illustrate Yeats' anguish over the apparent decline of Europe's ruling class, and his occult belief that Western Civilization (if not the whole world) was nearing the terminal point of a 2000-year historical cycle.
The poem was inspired by the Russian Revolution of 1917, which Yeats viewed as a threat to the aristocratic class he favoured.