TWILIGHT ZONE, THE: IN HIS IMAGE {FOURTH SEASON PREMIERE} (TV)

Summary

One in this science fiction/fantasy anthology series hosted by Rod Serling.

The story begins as Alan Talbot, a computer engineer, goes to see his girlfriend early in the morning when he accosted by a strange old woman on a subway platform. As the woman harasses him, Alan hears strange sounds, and a murderous impulse comes over him. He throws the woman beneath an oncoming subway train and runs off.

Later, Alan arrives at the apartment of his girlfriend, Jessica Connelly, with seemingly no memory of his encounter with the old woman. Alan and Jessica have only known each other for a few days, but she is in love with him and plans to marry him. Alan is taking Jessica to his home town of Coeurville to meet his aunt, who raised him. On the drive there, Alan falls asleep and has a nightmare, muttering the name “Walter” over and over again, but he says he does not know anyone named “Walter.” Alan and Jessica arrive in Coeurville, but Alan discovers many odd things about the town despite being absent for only a week: buildings exist that he cannot recall, a stranger is living in his aunt’s house, a woman he recently had lunch with has supposedly been dead for three years, and the university where he supposedly works is an empty field. Alan begins to doubt his sanity and visits the local cemetery to find his parents’ graves, only to find that a Mr. and Mrs. Walter Ryder are buried there instead.

Alan and Jessica drive back to New York during the night, and he once again hears strange sounds and a mysterious voice urging him to kill. Jessica pulls over and he pleads with her to leave, she reluctantly does so. As he flails about, Alan leaps out of the way of an oncoming car, injuring his arm. He inspects the wound only to find he is not bleeding. Peeling back his skin, it is revealed that his arm is not flesh and blood, but mechanical in nature. Confused, Alan checks himself into the local hotel in Coeurville and talks to Jessica on the phone, agreeing to be picked up the next morning. In the meantime, he finds a Walter Ryder, Jr. in the phonebook and goes to visit him.

He arrives at Walter’s house only to find that Walter Ryder, Jr. looks exactly like him. Walter explains that Alan is a mechanical being, created to be an idealized, “perfect” version of himself. All of Alan’s memories and experiences are taken from Walter’s own mind. Alan doesn’t believe him at first, but Walter shows him his basement laboratory and discusses his creation, about the intricate work involved with creating such an advanced machine. Walter tried to embody all his positive traits in a single being, but confesses that something went wrong; Alan attacked him and escaped, thus making Alan a failed creation in Walter’s eyes. Alan sees the truth in this, but instructs Walter to “create another Alan Talbot” to take care of Jessica. Before Alan can elaborate much further, his murderous impulse manifests again. Alan and Walter struggle, destroying the laboratory in the process.

Later, Jessica hears a knock on her apartment door and answers it, revealing what she thinks is Alan…but is actually Walter, giving himself a second chance at life. Meanwhile, Alan’s lifeless body lies amid the wreckage of Walter’s laboratory. Commercials deleted.

Details

  • NETWORK: CBS
  • DATE: January 3, 1963 9:00 PM
  • RUNNING TIME: 0:50:53
  • COLOR/B&W: B&W
  • CATALOG ID: B:55447
  • GENRE: Fantasy/science fiction
  • SUBJECT HEADING: Fantasy/science fiction
  • SERIES RUN: CBS - TV series, 1959-1964
  • COMMERCIALS:

CREDITS

    • Herbert Hirschman … Producer
    • Perry Lafferty … Director
    • Rod Serling … Created by
    • Charles Beaumont … Writer
    • Rod Serling … Host
    • George Grizzard … Cast, Alan Talbot, Walter Ryder, Jr.
    • Gail Kobe … Cast, Jessica Connelly
    • Katharine Squire … Cast, The Old Woman
    • Wallace Rooney … Cast, Man
    • George Petrie … Cast, Driver
    • James Seay … Cast, Sheriff
    • Jamie Forster … Cast, Hotel Clerk
    • Sherry Granato … Cast, Girl