The Outer Limits (1963) s01e15 Episode Script

The Mice

ÿþ1 <i>(eerie murmuring )</i> <i>( man )</i> There is nothing wrong with your television set.
Do not attempt to adjust the picture.
We are controlling transmission .
We will control the horizontal.
We will control the vertical.
We can change the focus to a soft blur or sharpen it to crystal clarity.
For the next hour, sit quietly and we will control all you see and hear.
You are about to participate in a great adventure.
You are about to experience the awe and mystery which reaches from the inner mind to.
The Outer Limits.
<i>( man )</i> ln dreams, some of us walk the stars.
ln dreams, some of us ride the whelming brine of space, where every port is a shining one and none are beyond our reach.
Some of us, in dreams, cannot reach beyond the walls of our own little sleep.
<i>( knock at the door)</i> <i>(door release buzzes)</i> Goldsmith, Haddon , Rivera here, sir.
Let them come in .
Wait outside, please.
This man is an astrophysicist.
He needs somebody for an experiment.
He has the government's permission to pick a volunteer from any prison in the US.
Six men have already turned him down .
Talk to them.
We need a man to be broken up into electrical particles to transmit into space at a speed greater than that of light.
That's it, simply.
lt's called ''teleportation ''.
When he gets to where he's going, he'll be reassembled.
lf he survives the experience, he comes back to Earth.
The same way.
- He gets put back together again ? - Yes.
he sa me as he was boforo ? Well, it's worked with inanimate objects, and it's worked with mice.
lt ought to work with a man .
All right, Haddon .
He's entitled to his bitterness, Warden .
And he's right.
You are being asked to volunteer.
You don 't have to if you don 't want to.
There'll be no special rewards.
lt'll be taken into consideration by the parole board when they review, but that's all.
lf you're not interested, just say so.
The transmission will have to be effected at a precise hour.
Tomorrow at 3 p.
lt's quite a distance to the point of transmission .
So l can 't give you much time to think about it.
We'd have to leave right away.
You said, ''When he gets where he's going.
'' Where's he going? To another planet.
- Are you interested? - Mm-mm.
- What planet? - Would it make a difference? <i>(buzzer)</i> Take them out.
Tell Mom l won 't be home tonight.
<i>(squeaks)</i> Ah! ls it true, Dr Harrison ? - ls what true? - That convicted murderers have no heart.
Mr Rivera has the steadiest heartbeat l've ever listened to.
And the loudest.
- Go and listen .
Hearts are of no interest to scientists.
<i>( mice squeaking )</i> He just sits there, reading? His tests show he's in perfect health.
He has nothing to worry about.
- Anybody got a cigarette? - Yeah, sure.
You can put your shirt on now.
l guess l ought to tell you .
l've changed my mind.
- Why? - Once l was hungry, when l was a kid.
So l asked the old lady for something to eat.
She said she'd bought lots with the money.
l said ''Lots of what?'' Lots in the cemetery.
6 of them for the 1 2 kids.
Like bunk beds.
So when l die, l gotta go get buried in my lot.
My belly paid for it.
- Hi.
l'm Chino.
- Richardson .
Robert Richardson .
All right, Rivera.
You've had your excursion into the country.
lt's over now.
- l didn 't think you'd do it.
We'll send you back.
- l was kidding.
None of this has sunk in yet, has it? Or are you just devoid of conscience and concern ? Conscience, who needs one? The whole world's my conscience.
What are you so concerned about? Me? - l didn 't make you volunteer.
- So l volunteered.
So that lets you treat me like something in a bottle? Maybe you'd like to get into that contraption ? Have your soul splattered all over space? No, l wouldn 't.
l don 't like the idea of it happening to yours, either.
- You think l've got a soul? - l think so.
l'm not just one of your mice? You take it out of a cage, see if it dies, put it back.
No, you're not just one of my mice.
lf l'm a man , treat me like a man .
You examine me, take my blood.
lt's, ''Take off your shirt.
'' ''Cough.
'' ls that how you treat a man ? ls that how men work together? Do you treat him like that? Forget it.
l just remembered.
Mice don 't complain .
l had to have some positive reports on those tests.
l didn 't tell you anything till l knew you were perfect to go.
Trouble with me, l'm too perfect.
We were experimenting with the motion of sound.
We made contact with the planet Chromo.
Our computers rearranged the mosaic of their language.
We understood that they wished to understand ours.
We fed them a mathematical compilation of English signs.
They learned it immediately, indicating that the Chromoites have a cerebral consumption velocity equal or close to the speed of light.
After that they wouldn 't communicate in anything but English.
We sense no hostility.
Our psychiatric division found none in their analysis of the Chromoite communications.
So, when they proposed a meeting, we had no reason to feel anything but.
the way most men feel when they're about to experience a significant adventure.
Only nobody wanted to be first.
They wanted to see a major member of the human race and send an equivalent member of theirs to us.
Neither of us wanted to risk losing that person .
- So, up go the mice.
-No, the mice weren 't enough to risk.
l mean me and whoever they're sending.
A man can think he is making a contribution to humanity.
A mouse can 't.
Why don 't you try thinking like a man ? So l'm making a contribution .
Do l have to make it on an empty stomach? l'll have some lunch brought in for you .
No restaurant? You'll have to stay in here, Chino.
Until you go.
That's my getaway car.
- What time do l go? - 3 p.
Right after their man arrives.
Good afternoon , gentlemen .
Will you step over this way, please? Our scientists and technicians have constructed this teleportation agency according to instructions and formulae given to us by the government of Chromo.
A genuine explanation of its principles would be time-consuming and extremely unenlightening for any but the painfully initiated.
What you will witness is this: on planet Chromo, ten light years away, an experimental animal, in this case, a member of their race, will enter a similar machine.
He will be transmitted as television images are transmitted and will arrive here for reassembly.
No matter will be lost, no atomic disintegration will occur.
lmmediately upon arrival and reassembly of the Chromoite, our experimental.
Our subject will enter this booth and by the same process arrive on Chromo.
Sure as God made little green apples.
Mr Rivera is the gentleman who has volunteered to leave from this end.
Transmission from Chromo will begin in approximately three minutes.
Gentlemen , please move to that area and do not approach the TA during operation .
- Excuse me, gentlemen .
- <i>( high</i> -<i>pitched whistling )</i> Are you getting established yet? <i>( voice over transmitter)</i> Transmission point, Chromo.
Subject stable.
Sequence commencing.
lnitiate system.
lnitiate systems.
Transmission point, Earth.
Systems initiated.
<i>( Kellander)</i> Transmit.
Transmission accomplished.
<i>(electronic whistling static buzzing )</i> <i>( Kellander)</i> Richardson ! Go back! Right back! Back! No! No! No, don 't! Hey! Hey! ls anybody else in here? - Hi.
- Hello.
l can 't eat this stuff.
ls there anything else to eat? Well, you had cream of tomato soup yesterday.
Jellied madriléne the day before.
And rich, pure glucose the day before that.
lntravenously, of course.
A man needs meat.
He needs his doctor's authorisation first.
- Are they gonna give me meat up there? - They don 't have any.
They don 't have any food on Chromo.
Sounds like my old lady's icebox.
What do they eat? -Nothing.
- How do they keep alive? Like a plant does, through photosynthesis.
l'd better bring a couple of hero sandwiches with me.
Supplies will be teleported the moment we know your transmission 's a success.
lt'll be successful.
lf that monster can make it, so can l.
- Maybe you'll look like a monster to them.
- Everybody does to somebody.
- <i>( knocks at door)</i> lt's Dr Kellander.
- Just a moment.
l thought you forgot about me, Kelly.
No, l stayed away deliberately.
To give you a chance to think.
l can 't think when l'm this sick.
My thoughts turn green .
You were hit hard, Chino.
Every window in this building is screened with an electronic force field.
lt's impossible to break.
lf it's cut off inadvertently at the power plant, a very loud alarm sounds all over the centre, inside and out.
You must have had fun keeping it a big, fat secret from me.
- l didn 't think you'd try to escape.
-Neither did l.
No? l think you had it in mind the minute you left the warden 's office.
That's probably the only reason you volunteered.
Come to think of it, you're right.
What's the matter with you? Are you psychopathic? - Do you know when you're lying? - What's the difference if l know? What's important is if you know.
<i>( knock at door)</i> - Yes? - lt's Richardson .
Dr Kellander.
- There's something you ought to know about.
- Just a minute.
Maybe tomorrow l'll feel good enough to take some sun outside.
No, Rivera.
You let that monster walk around free as a cockroach.
Can 't l get some sun ? No.
The juxtaposition phase between Earth and Chromo will pass by 6 p.
You go by then or not at all.
You go back to prison and finish out your life sentence.
Maybe that's where you belong.
Get up and get dressed, Rivera.
And be ready.
l guess there's nowhere to go but up.
You ever see a smear like that before? lnever have.
What is it? lt's this.
- And it's alive.
- lt's alive.
- Have you isolated any of its properties? - As many as l could.
All alien .
- Where did it come from? - l found a few droppings in the corridor.
Just two days ago.
Today l found what appears to be its source: the lake.
- Our lake? Here on the grounds? - Mm-hm.
l think it's gestating just below the surface.
lt's washed up like scum along the bank.
- What's the chemistry unit doing? - First, trying to find a way to kill it.
That sounded awfully cold-blooded, didn 't it? Well, we found a way to kill it.
A compound of insecticides.
l'm going to the lake to test its efficacy at the stuff's origin point.
<i>(alarm bell)</i> A disease that walks like a man and strikes and kills.
And for no reason .
He could have knocked him out and let it go at that.
He didn 't have to drown him.
The security engineer examined the force field in the infirmary window.
The field wasn 't cut off there.
Chino couldn 't have cut it off anyplace else.
He was locked in the infirmary.
He picked the lock and got out.
Must have escaped through another window.
His shoe was found right outside the infirmary window.
He wasn 't wearing it when he was caught.
He must have gone out that way.
- And that's what he insists.
- And you believe him? Well, it's the way he insists, without really insisting.
The same way he denies killing Dr Richardson .
<i>( knock at door)</i> - Yes? - lt's Dr Kellander.
- l didn 't kill him.
- You've killed before, Rivera.
That man l knew.
l knew what he was like.
l knew what he was doing to my sister.
l warned him to stop a lot of times, but he didn 't stop.
Since he didn 't mind killing her little by little, l didn 't mind killing him all at once.
That's why l got life.
That's why l don 't rate parole.
No remorse, they call it.
But your man l didn 't know.
l don 't kill strangers.
You made it sound believable, but then , you have that talent.
- l didn 't kill him.
- You were escaping.
l was dreaming.
l was back in the ring, l heard the bell, and came out fighting.
lt's reflex.
All my life, l've been fighting for my life.
l just can 't believe that some guys were born to lie down and die.
l guess l never will.
l'm gonna keep trying to escape.
Even when l'm in that machine with somebody's finger that much away from the blast button .
l want free, understand? l don 't want to go back to prison .
- Free! l want! - Maybe you weren 't meant to be free.
On this Earth.
Maybe you'll find freedom in some other world.
You'll do anything to get me to make the trip, won 't you? l like you for that.
But l don 't like the idea of me settling down up there.
l've been out with some dogs in my time, but if those yo-yos up there are from the same area as the garbage-eater they sent here.
This is the only ring that l want to fight in .
Fight like a man then , instead of a fighter! Volunteering to do something useful is being a man .
Walking into that machine with your head up and fists open is fighting like a man .
Remember what the warden said? The parole board takes into consideration these things.
You know why you're so dumb? - lt's a waste of time to send me up now.
- Why, Rivera? That machine worked for one mouse, it'll work for another.
Don 't waste time with mice, send a man ! Because success was achieved by the form of life on Chromo, doesn 't mean that it will work for man .
The experiment is only half completed.
We transmit you sharply at four.
- l wish l didn 't have to be there at four.
- He might need some of that compassion .
Compassion ? That's just a word people use when they're ashamed of feeling plain , old-fashioned pity.
Well, l feel pity, Kelly.
He'd hate it.
Wouldn 't you? <i>(eerie murmuring )</i> <i>(beeping )</i> <i>( voice over transmitter)</i> Transmission point, Chromo.
Ready to receive transmission .
Transmission point, Earth.
Subject stable.
lnitiate systems.
<i>(inaudible )</i> <i>(static buzzing )</i> <i>(Julie )</i> Help! Please! l know what the orders are.
You ring through anyway! <i>(alarm rings)</i> What is it? What's the matter? Get that bell fixed, quick! <i>(alarm continues)</i> Stay here! - How is he? - l can 't find anything wrong with him.
He's sleeping now.
lt's probably shock.
Something went wrong with everything.
We couldn 't even communicate with them.
lt's never happened before.
Their instructions were flawless.
lt was as easy as a local phone call.
lt tried to kill me.
lt must have killed Dr Richardson .
lt broke the force field and started to climb in .
l thought the alarm was because of the TA failure, a short circuit or something.
Here, sit down , Julie.
l went for a walk, to be alone and to scold myself for pitying somebody just because l understood him.
And l saw it.
by the lake.
You remember when Chino got hurt, escaping? We told them up there there'd be a delay.
They were so understanding and told us not to transmit him until we wanted to.
And you asked them if they wanted us to send their man back.
And they told us, ''No.
Let him stay here a while.
'' - ''Let him explore.
'' - l remember their saying that.
Can you go on , Julie? Well.
lt was by the lake, throwing something in .
And then .
Then .
it began to eat.
lt looked like it was eating.
No mouth, but it kept consuming.
The stuff that Richardson found.
l wondered why Chino called it a garbage-eater.
They told us they lived through photosynthesis.
They lied, Kelly.
- What's security's extension ? - Two seven six.
Johnson ? Kellander.
Put out your full squad.
Cover the grounds, especially the lake area, and all the buildings in the centre.
l want the Chromoite.
Bring him here.
This is urgent! lf it puts up a fight, throw a net over it.
But do not kill it.
- You all right, Julie? - Yeah.
Whatever that stuff is, the Chromoite didn 't want Richardson to destroy it.
l'll be in Administration .
l think we'd better keep the Washington line open .
<i>(electronic buzzing and whistling )</i> ls Dr Kellander there yet? Williams.
l have to speak to him.
l'll hold.
Doctor, could you get over here right away? l've picked up an alien transmission .
l thought it might have something to do with the breakdown .
lt sounds urgent.
<i>(footsteps)</i> <i>( knocks at door)</i> The lab.
Stop him! <i>(electronic beeping and whistling )</i> <i>(static buzzing )</i> Julie, get some help! Hey! Break it in ! No, Chino! Don 't shoot! Don 't kill it.
Just holding him for you , Kelly.
Couldn 't let him escape, could l? He's a killer.
<i>( voice over transmitter)</i> Transmission point, Chromo.
The Chromoite prisoner must be returned to us.
We have failed.
No further attempts upon Earth will be made.
lnitiate transmission .
Prisoner is most eminent scientist of planet Chromo.
Vital to Chromo's survival.
You have deceived us.
Your scientist is a murderer.
What, in heaven 's name, was your purpose? Chromo soil no longer yields.
Seeking overtake planet for production of Chromo staff of life.
You should have asked.
Remember what the warden said, Chino? The parole board takes into consideration these contributions.
lf l don 't bleed to death first.
All you had to do was to ask.
<i>( man )</i> Hunger frightens and hurts, and it has many faces.
Every man must sometime face the terror of one of them.
Wouldn 't it seem that a misery known and understood by all men , would lead man not to deception and murder, but to faith and hope and love? We now return control of your television set to you until next week at this same time when the control voice will take you to.
The Outer Limits.