The Galaxy Being

The Outer LimitsRadio station engineer Alan Maxwell is bleeding power from his station’s own transmitter to conduct microwave experiments, and costing the station money as a result. But even when confronted about his unauthorized experiments, he refuses to halt them, certain that he has picked up microwave transmissions from an intelligence beyond Earth. Despite his co-workers’ skepticism, he persists with his experiments, and one night makes contact with a glowing being with whom he opens a dialogue. In the course of their conversation, it becomes apparent that both of them are breaking the rules of their respective worlds by conducting their experiments…and that the creatures whom Maxwell has contacted know nothing of death, war or famine. When Maxwell tells his new friend that Earth does know of death and the horrors of war, the alien declares the human race dangerous – but doesn’t berak contact. Maxwell is due to be honored by the mayor the next evening, and adjusts the transmitter power to make sure he can still contact the alien creature later, with a warning to the announcer on duty not to boost the power. But when listeners complain, the announcer does just that – giving Maxwell’s voice from the other side, a life form composed entirely of electromagnetic energy, the means to manifest itself physically on Earth.

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directed by Leslie Stevens
music by Dominic Frontiere

Cast: Lee Phillips (Gene “Buddy” Maxwell), Jacqueline Scott (Carol Maxwell), Cliff Robertson (Alan Maxwell), Burt Metcalfe (Eddie Phillips), Allyson Ames (Gene’s date), Joseph Perry (Trooper), Don Harvey (National Guard Major), William Stevens (Policeman), Mavis Neal (Collins), Peter Madsen (Trooper), William I. Douglas (The Galaxy Being)

Original title: Please Stand By…

LogBook entry by Earl Green

The Hundred Days Of The Dragon

The Outer LimitsAs the Presidential election looms in the United States, an east Asian government plans a shocking takeover strategy – using a well-briefed deep cover agent and a serum which renders his skin pliable, capable of mimicking another person’s face and even their fingerprints, they will replace William L. Selby, the leading candidate, putting their man into office when he wins the election. The agent breaks into Selby’s hotel room, injects the real Selby with the skin serum, turning him into the likeness of a foreign agent – and then shoots him at point-blank range, later claiming self-defense. As anticipated, “Selby” wins the election, but soon after taking office he surprises his Vice President with the news that he will meet with the Chinese leader, brokering a troop withdrawal from a disputed southeast Asian nation. Selby’s Vice President doesn’t agree with him, but his dissent will soon be of little consequence – the Chinese delegation arriving to meet with the President is also planning on the replacement of more key officials in the United States government.

Download this episode via Amazon's Unboxwritten by Allan Balter and Robert Mintz
directed by Byron Haskin
music by Dominic Frontiere

Cast: Sidney Blackmer (William Selby), Phillip Pine (Theodore Pearson), Mark Roberts (Robert Carter), Nancy Rennick (Carol Conner), Aki Aleong (Dr. Su-Lin), Richard Loo (Li-Chin Sung), Joan Camden (Ann Pearson), Bert Remsen (Frank Summers), Clarence Lung (Major Ho Chi-Wang), Henry Scott (Agent Marshall), James Hong (Wen Lee), James Yagi (Li Kwan)

LogBook entry by Earl Green

The Architects Of Fear

The Outer LimitsA shadowy committee within the U.S. government contemplates an audacious scheme – to unite the world in peace against a common, but invented, enemy. But one of the committee’s members must volunteer to become that enemy, transformed by painful surgical procedures after an arranged “death” is concocted to cover the chosen member’s disappearance. Alan Leighton is picked at random to be transforned into an “alien” invader – meaning he must leave his wife behind as a widow. But the ruse will crumble if, even after his transformation, Leighton can’t resist contacting his wife to reveal the truth.

Download this episode via Amazon's Unboxwritten by Meyer Dolinsky
directed by Byron Haskin
music by Dominic Frontiere

Cast: Robert Culp (Alan Leighton), Leonard Stone (Dr. Gainer), Martin Wolfson (Dr. Herschel), Geraldine Brooks (Yvette Leighton), Hal Bokar (Bert Bolsey), William Bush (Big Tom), Clay Tanner (Fred), Lee Zimmer (Carl)

LogBook entry by Earl Green

The Man With The Power

The Outer LimitsHarold Findley, an ordinary man who recently underwent a brain operation hasn’t revealed the full extent of his surgery to the world. He actually volunteered for a very experimental, very secret and very dangerous procedure that would give him control over raw energy – an ability which begins to manifest itself in a terrifying way when violent fates begin to befall those who anger him. The procedure is being tested as a top-secret enhancement for astronauts on long-duration asteroid mining missions, but as Finley’s powers grow more destructive, he begins to see that he may also be the first example of a new human weapon…one with the means to destroy the world with a single thought.

Download this episode via Amazon's Unboxwritten by Jerome Ross
directed by Laslo Benedek
music by Dominic Frontiere

Cast: Donald Pleasance (Harold J. Finley), Priscilla Morrill (Vera Finley), Fred Bier (Steve Cravett), Edward C. Platt (Dean Radcliffe), John Marley (Dr. Hindemann), Frank Maxwell (Dr. Keenan), Paul Lambert (Dr. Henschel), James McCallion (Dr. Tremaine), Ann Loos (Emily Radcliffe), Harry Ellerbee (Finley’s Doctor)

LogBook entry by Earl Green

The Sixth Finger

The Outer LimitsA girl named Cathy delivers bread to an eccentric scientist in a small mining town, and discovers his experiments to increase the intelligence of a chimpanzee. She inquires about becoming the next experiment, eager to escape her working-class drudgery, but when she brings her friend, a miner named Gwylim who has recently quit his mining job in anger, the scientist is much more interested in experimenting on him. When Gwylim proves suitable, he becomes the center of an experiment to advance humankind’s evolution by tens of thousands of years. The most visible evidence of the experiment is the growth of a sixth finger on each hand, and an obvious increase in the size of Gwylim’s cranium, with an attendant increase in his intelligence and the ability to read minds. But what he still lacks is a more practical education, and he sets about trying to acquire this for himself by reading voraciously. But Gwylim continues to evolve even without further experiments, developing the terrifying power to kill with a thought – and an even more disturbing lack of any remorse for the death of his first victim, the professor’s housekeeper. Eager to out-evolve the hatred he still feels for the town, Gwylim now wants to continue the experiment by evolving into humanity’s ultimate form…but Cathy wants to de-evolve him into the man that he once was.

Download this episode via Amazon's Unboxwritten by Ellis St. Joseph
directed by James Goldstone
music by Dominic Frontiere

Cast: David McCallum (Gwylim), Jill Haworth (Cathy), Edward Mulhare (Professor Mathers), Nora Marlowe (Mrs. Ives), Robert Doyle (Wilt), Constance Cavendish (Gert), George Pelling (Policeman), Janos Prohaska (Darwin)

Notes: Stuntman Janos Prohaska has a solid classic SF pedigree; his appearances range from Professor Mathers’ chimpanzee Darwin (along with two other Outer Limits appearances) to the Gumato creature in the original Star Trek episode A Private Little War and as two different creatures in the unaired series pilot, The Cage. He also appeared in Lost In Space, Land Of The Giants, Bewitched, Perry Mason, Gilligan’s Island, and Escape From The Planet Of The Apes, frequently impersonating some kind of animal. He died in a plane crash, along with his son, stuntman Robert Prohaska, in 1974 while working on a TV series called The Ascent Of Man.

LogBook entry by Earl Green

The Man Who Was Never Born

The Outer LimitsAfter an unusual incident rocks his spacecraft on approach to Earth after an eight-month solo mission, astronaut Joseph Reardon requests instructions for re-entry and receives no reply. Reardon manages to land his vehicle on his own, but finds himself in a vast wasteland with only a single occupant, a horribly mutated man named Andro. Andro tells Reardon that the year is now 2148 – 200 years in the astronaut’s future – and that the human race has all but been destroyed by an experiment by a biologist named Bertram Cabot, Jr. Horrified and galvanized by what he sees, Reardon is determined to return to space in an attempt to re-create the conditions that warped him into the future. He brings Andro with him, hoping that the sight of the disfigured man will convince Cabot, or those around him, to end his experiments. But when the ship travels through the time warp again, the timeline has already changed – and Reardon ceases to exist, leaving Andro to stop Cabot’s experiments on his own.

Download this episode via Amazon's Unboxwritten by Anthony Lawrence
directed by Leonard Horn
music by Dominic Frontiere

Cast: Martin Landau (Andro), Shirley Knight (Noel), John Considine (Bertram Cabot), Maxine Stuart (Mrs. McCluskey), Karl Held (Joseph Reardon), Jack Raine (Minister)

Notes: Martin Landau later went on to star in two cult classic series, Mission: Impossible and Space: 1999, and also appeared in a later Outer Limits episode, The Bellero Shield.

LogBook entry by Earl Green

O.B.I.T.

The Outer LimitsA murder at a top-secret Defense Department facility attracts the attention of Senator Orville, who arrives to personally conduct the investigation. During the course of his inquiry, Senator Orville learns of the highly classified O.B.I.T. (Outer Band Individuated Teletracer) surveillance device, which the facility’s personnel claim can observe any person, at any time, in any location within 500 miles; the device has been used to gather intelligence, but Senator Orville is worried that it may be finding another use as a means of determining the loyalty of those observed. The murder victim was operating O.B.I.T. at the time of his death. The Senator demands that all records related to O.B.I.T.’s origins be sent to him immediately, and wants to see Dr. Scott, one of the researchers on the O.B.I.T. project, but the officer in charge of the facility warns the Senator that carrying the investigation any further would work against the interests of national security. Senator Orville calls Dr. Scott in despite that warning, and learns that Scott knows that O.B.I.T. has another function – that of eliminating the people it observes. Scott is also aware of another deeply disturbing fact: there’s one person in the facility who can’t be seen by O.B.I.T. under normal circumstances – and that person has his own O.B.I.T. device.

Download this episode via Amazon's Unboxwritten by Meyer Dolinsky
directed by Gerd Oswald
music by Dominic Frontiere

Cast: Peter Breck (Senator Orville), Jeff Corey (Byron Lomax), Joanne Gilbert (Barbara Scott), Alan Baxter (Colonel Grover), Harry Townes (Dr. Clifford Scott), Sam Reese (Clyde Wyatt), Konstantin Shayne (Professor), Jason Wingreen (O.B.I.T. Operator), Lindsay Workman (Dr. Anderson), Robert Beneveds (Armand Younger), William Douglas (O.B.I.T. Creature)

LogBook entry by Earl Green

The Human Factor

The Outer LimitsAn engineer at an isolated military outpost in Greenland is ordered to undergo psychiatric treatment when he begins repeatedly talking about an alien presence on the base – and his desire to destroy it by destroying the base itself. Using a device he has secretly been developing, psychiatrist Dr. Hamilton can join his mind to that of Major Brothers, peering into the disturbed man’s thoughts, but one of the frequent earthquakes in this region induces a large power surge, accidentally swapping the two men’s minds. Now in the body of Dr. Hamilton, Brothers is now free to carry out his threat with almost no interference. Trapped in Brothers’ body, Hamilton is powerless to stop him unless he can convince his assistant that he is who he says he is.

Download this episode via Amazon's Unboxwritten by David Duncan
directed by Abner Biberman
music by Dominic Frontiere

The Outer LimitsCast: Gary Merrill (Dr. Hamilton), Harry Guardino (Major Brothers), Sally Kellerman (Ingrid), Joe de Santis (Colonel Campbell), Shirley O’Hara (Dr. Soldini), Jane Langley (Nurse), James B. Sikking (Orderly), Ivan Dixon (Major Giles), John Newton (Peterson), Matty Jordan (Sentry), Art Alisi (Sergeant)

Notes: The military base in this episode may have been based on the DEW Line (Distant Early Warning) radar sites built by the United States during the height of the Cold War, which included several sites in Greenland and the neighboring Nunavut region of Canada, which includes Baffin Island.

LogBook entry by Earl Green

Soldier

The Outer LimitsTwo soldiers rush into a man-to-man fight to the death in the future – but a freak electrical discharge sends one of them plunging back through time to the 20th century. The soldier mistakes a newspaper man’s knife for a weapon and guns him down, immediately drawing attention to himself. Police arrive at the scene and a fierce fight ensues – only to end abruptly when the soldier collapses in sudden pain. A criminal psychiatrist, Kagan, is asked to examine the soldier, with whom no one has been able to communicate since his arrest. Kagan finally breaks through and discovers the true nature – and origin – of his charge, he begins trying to coach him on the ways of life during peacetime. Just as the soldier is adjusting to the life of a human being, his enemy finds a way back to 20th century Earth, still seeking nothing less than the destruction of his mortal foe, regardless of who gets in the way.

Download this episode via Amazon's Unboxwritten by Harlan Ellison
directed by Gerd Oswald
music by Harry Lubin

The Outer LimitsCast: Lloyd Nolan (Kagan), Michael Ansara (Qarlo), Tim O’Connor (Tanner), Ralph Hart (Loren), Jill Hill (Toni), Allen Jaffe (Enemy), Marlowe Jensen (Sgt. Berry), Catherine McLeod (Abby Kagan), Ted Stanhope (Doctor)

Notes: After the release of the thematically similar movie The Terminator, writer Harlan Ellison filed a lawsuit against writer/director James Cameron over that movie’s similarities to this episode, leading to the on-screen credit in The Terminator acknowledging Ellison’s original story.

LogBook entry by Earl Green

Demon With A Glass Hand

The Outer LimitsIn modern-day Los Angeles, faceless pursuers are hot on the trail of a man named Trent with a glass hand – a man who is only ten days old. A computer intelligence within Trent’s hand guides him, but only tells him precisely what he needs to know to survive and complete a mysterious mission; it can’t share any more information until he retrieves the hand’s missing fingers, which contain additional instructions. Trapped in a building that his pursuers have placed a force bubble around, Trent finds a human woman – oblivious to any knowledge of the conflict from a millennium into her future – and confides in her what little he knows. He’s from the future, where humans have simply vanished after a horrible war with an alien race. And somehow, he holds the key to reviving the entire species… but only if he survives his attackers’ constant attempts to capture him.

Download this episode via Amazon's Unboxwritten by Harlan Ellison
directed by Byron Haskin
music by Harry Lubin

The Outer LimitsCast: Robert Culp (Trent), Arlene Martel (Consuelo), Bill Hart (Durn), Rex Holman (Battle), Steve Harris (Breech), Robert Fortier (Budge), Abraham Sofaer (Arch)

Notes: In interviews in Cinefantastique Magazine in 1994, Ellison claimed to be working on an episode of Babylon 5, Demon On The Run, which would have been a direct sequel to this story, featuring either Robert Culp or his son, actor Joseph Culp, as Trent, still eluding capture in the distant future. Ellison served as Babylon 5’s creative consultant for its entire run and even appeared onscreen in the role of a Psi Cop, but Demon On The Run was never produced. Demon With A Glass Hand was filmed on location in the Bradbury Building (not named for fellow SF author Ray Bradbury), which was also a key location used in Blade Runner.

LogBook entry by Earl Green