The Outer Limits (1963) s02e07 Episode Script

The Invisible Enemy

( man) ln the vast immensities of cosmic space, bold adventurers streak their way to join battle with strange enemies on strange worlds, the alien , the unknown , perhaps even the invisible, armed only with man 's Earthbound knowledge.
We made it, Fred.
We're on Mars.
No sweat at all.
Check all systems.
Secure retros.
Maintain full power at all times.
This is Captain Fred Thomas, commanding interplanetary vehicle M-1 , colonisation probe, to Colonel Hal Danvers, headquarters communication , planet Earth.
Subject of report: arrival on the planet Mars.
Landing is completely successful.
l'm going out, Jim.
- Hey, Fred, remember the general's orders.
- How can l forget? - ''Stay in touch at all times.
'' - A-OK.
This is Lieutenant James Bowman continuing arrival report.
As of 1 3.
40, Captain Thomas has left the vehicle for preliminary inspection of the terrain .
We will be in constant communication and all information will be monitored over LD radio to Earth Control.
Hello, Fred? Hello? You read me? - Loud and clear.
- Just checking.
You see anything out there? Mars, that's all.
Not a sign of a single living thing.
- Hello, Jim? Do you read me? - A-OK.
l'm going to circle on back towards the vehicle.
- l'll see you later.
- Roger.
Listen , Fred, be real careful, will you? Over.
Hello, Fred? Hello? Do you read me? - Loud and clear.
- Just checking.
You see anything out there? Mars, that's all.
Not a sign of a single living thing.
l'm moving out.
General, it takes their voices three and a half minutes to reach us.
lt puts them on their own .
l'd prefer more control down here.
l just hope, Colonel, they observe all the instructions.
Continuing arrival report.
Time: 1 3.
Mars time, that is, Colonel.
You will receive this in three and one-half minutes, so add that on .
- Captain Thomas reports - ( man screams) Help me, Jim! Help! Fred! l'm coming! ( man) 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.
Frank! Answer me! Where are you? Frank! - General Winston , Colonel Danvers, they're on .
- Hello, Jim, do you read me? - A-OK.
- l'm going to circle on back towards the vehicle.
l'll see you later.
Listen , Fred, be real careful, will you? Yeah, be careful, Fred.
For the hundredth time, be careful.
Continuing arrival report.
Time: 1 3.
Mars time that is, Colonel.
You'll receive this in three and one-half minutes, so add that to my figures.
Captain Thomas reports ( man screams) Help me, Jim! Help! - Stay where you are, Jim.
Stay where you are.
- Fred, where are you? Answer me, Fred! Oh! Oh, my God! Help me, Fred! (screams) What's up there? What's doing it? No sign of life, he said.
Disobeyed orders.
They're gone! ( man) Yeah, be careful, Fred.
For the hundredth time, be careful.
- Come in .
- He's here, sir.
- Who's here, Colonel Danvers? - That man with the briefcase.
His name is Jerome.
Mr Jerome.
l asked him to make himself at home in the lounge.
l wanted to give you time to get used to having a civilian monitor.
-No doubt he has a line to the White House.
- Hasn 't every assistant secretary of state? - How many hours? - According to schedule, the M-2 will land on Mars in 3 hours and 40 minutes.
Three years in preparation , four months in flight five years of sleepless nights, just to put a colony on Mars.
Well, let's meet the man .
- General Winston .
- Mr Jerome.
- lt's a privilege to meet you , sir.
- Colonel Danvers has been filling you in .
Mostly on safety precautions for this probe, which weren 't taken on the M-1 probe.
Yes, procedure rules, the instantaneous communication .
The laser method.
Didn 't have it last time.
Cuts out the time lag.
Transmits an order instantly.
You might say l can quarterback the operation from my desk.
- l haven 't told him about Tillie.
- Tillie? Tillie is TL-3, our computer.
l suppose Mr Jerome would like to meet her.
- Yes.
Yes, indeed.
- Gentlemen .
(bleeps) This Tillie wasn 't in existence when Thomas and Bowman were lost, was she? No, it wasn 't finished then .
Well, now that she's here, how does she work? What will it correlate? Here's where we feed tapes of communications, information about the prescribed dangers.
You mean like an invisible enemy, a ghost? A ghost is what this contraption has come up with as the best possibility to look for.
( man) Calling Earth Control.
Calling Earth Control.
- Earth Control here.
Go ahead.
- Hello, Colonel.
This is M-2 reporting.
- Major Merritt commanding.
- Chuck, read you loud and clear.
- We're ready for your report.
- Roger.
Stand by.
- That's Major Charles Merritt.
Remember him? - Yes, sir, l do.
l was there when he received the Medal of Honor.
Good man .
This is our finest crew.
Completely dedicated.
Down 3 Doubled.
That's 800 points, Buckley.
- Lucky there are no dames where we're going.
- l hate to say, Major, but your mike is still on .
That's all there is, General.
Belay the cards.
Lazzari, stand by main fuel valves.
Relay orders to engineering.
Johnson , topside to main control deck.
l can 't seem to get enough of looking at that planet.
Time to start the orbital glide.
(sound of engine) Get the computer data.
Secure main power.
Rig solar batteries.
Full charge.
- Calling Earth Control.
- Come in , Major.
Observation report as requested.
Target: 300 yards.
Remains of the M-1 .
No sign of life.
Temperature: 1 8 degrees above Fahrenheit.
Air pressure: 8.
9lb per square inch.
Atmosphere will support life.
No helmets needed.
( General Winston) Secure the vehicle for the night.
No one is to disembark.
You understand that, Major? No one.
Yes, sir.
- What did they do down there? Fall asleep? - Keep your shirt on .
Calculations take longer than decisions.
Tillie can 't make up her mind.
You know women .
Don 't tell him about dames.
He wrote the book.
Gee, fellas, l'm just a poor old country astronaut.
Stow it.
OK, Lazzari, let's have it again .
Descend to base of vehicle and wait for orders.
- Hey, very good.
You got it right that time.
- Shut up, Buckley.
Two: proceed with caution to target, keeping under observation from the vehicle.
- Purpose? - Reconnoitre for indication of hostile action against personnel of previous probe, which may have led to their demise.
- Mission ? - Gather all evidence of nature of enemy, if any, and bring it back to the vehicle.
- Safely.
- Safely.
That's it, and don 't forget it.
lt's all that simple.
No embroidery.
One: survival.
Two: complete the mission .
(radib ) Calling M-2.
Calling M-2.
- Merritt here, Colonel.
- OK, Chuck.
All precautions taken ? - Affirmative.
- This is General Winston .
Before l give the word, l want to stress again l won 't tolerate any deviation from procedure.
- You understand? - Yes, l understand.
- l'll check every move.
You'd better be right.
- Yes, General.
When that man goes out, l want every eye to cover him.
l'm waiting for your orders, General.
Proceed to investigate target as instructed and keep this monitor hot.
OK, Lazzari, you're on your way.
Give him a hand.
Orders received and duly executed, sir.
We'll keep you posted.
( Lazzari) All ready, Skipper.
Move out to the objective with caution .
Pieces of this bird seem to be scattered all over the place.
Any sign of life? Nothing.
OK, Paul, you move on to the nearest piece of wreckage.
That's where you put your marker.
How do you feel? Wilco, Skipper, and l feel fine.
- Lazzari, you're out of sight! - l'm here, Skipper, behind this wreckage.
- There's something weird, the way it's twisted.
- Get out where you can be seen .
There's an odd piece of metal buried there.
No elements could damage it that way.
Marks on it like scratches.
- Could you bring it back to the vehicle? - l can try.
Long enough, Lazzari.
Let's see it.
Do you read me? OK, Lazzari, you find something, walk out from behind ( Lazzari screams) Major! (screams) Lazzari! Lazzari! Paul! Are you hurt? - Wait a minute! Major! - Major Merritt, what's going on up there? There's been a mishap, General.
Captain Lazzari's in trouble.
Request permission to go to his assistance.
Request under consideration , Major.
First, l want the facts.
Was Captain Lazzari attacked? lf affirmative, by what? - l don 't know, sir.
- He was under constant surveillance? He was blocked from view behind wreckage of the M-1 .
- How do you know anything happened? - He screamed for help.
You believe he was attacked, and yet you want to expose yourself to danger? - l'm in command, sir.
- And responsible for the success of the mission .
A commander has to do something about losing a man , sir.
- Regret to say, Major, permission denied.
- May l ask why, sir? Until l've studied tapes of all transmissions, no one may leave that vehicle.
Do you understand, Major? Acknowledge, please.
Let me go, Skipper.
Yes, General.
l understand.
( Lazzari) There's an odd piece of metal buried there.
No elements could damage it that way.
Marks on it like scratches.
- Could you bring it back to the vehicle? - l can try.
''8, May, 09.
1 1 a.
All enemy possibilities still in effect.
'' ''Disappearance unobserved.
Safety factor ignored.
'' Just as l thought.
ln spite of my orders, Captain Lazzari was unobserved.
lncreased possibilities that enemy is aware of human presence.
'' ''Note.
lncreased possibilities that enemy is not visible to human sight.
'' What does it mean by that? The computer reveals the obvious with the felicity of an elephant.
No one saw the enemy, i.
- What's the procedure now, General Winston ? - Procedure? l'm going to push on to our objectives.
One, to find and destroy the enemy, two, to gather data for the future colonisation of Mars.
There are no safety factors for the astronauts still up there.
Are you suggesting we withdraw? Well, it's hardly within my province to do that, General Winston .
Mr Jerome, we are going to continue this mission as planned until it can be marked accomplished.
Get me Major Merritt.
- Calling M-2.
Calling M-2.
- Major Merritt here.
Come in , Earth Control.
General Winston here.
Surely it isn 't necessary to stress what further deviation from procedure can mean ? -No, sir.
l understand.
- Here are your instructions.
Keep me posted of every step.
One: assign a man to target.
Two: post the other halfway and at a tangent as sentry.
Three: constant surveillance from you in the vehicle and the sentry on the ground.
Armament: bazooka, nuclear-tipped.
Four: dispatch.
- Hello, Jack.
Read me? - You bet.
Ready? All clear.
You're on your way.
- Take care.
- Roger.
- l'm getting pretty close, Skipper.
- These binoculars put me alongside you .
When l lose sight of you , Frank will pick you up from his angle.
(Jack) Everything seems A-OK.
Frank here.
You're coming into view good for me, Jack.
( Frank) l won 't lose sight of you .
(Jack) lf l remove these sand shoes and stick to the rocks, l'll be faster.
Be my guest.
- ( Merritt See anything startling? - Yeah.
The metal is there, like Lazzari said.
- You've left me, but l'm sure Frank - That's right, Major.
l see him kneeling there.
- Lazzari was right here, wasn 't he? - Yes.
l hate to say it.
lt sounds crazy, but there's no sign that Lazzari was ever here.
No struggle, nothing.
The enemy must be invisible like Tillie says.
Can you get that metal loose? l take it all back, Skipper.
There's blood on this thing.
( Merritt Jack, bring that metal and move out where l can see you .
Right now! An enemy that draws blood is not invisible.
- This has got me bugged.
How do you figure it? - We'll work that out later.
l want you and Frank to return to base.
- Good work, Jack.
- OK if l circle around on the rock? lt's easier.
- l'll look for other evidence.
- Keep in sight.
No problem, Skipper.
- Calling Earth Control.
- Come in M-2.
Colonel Danvers here.
- Ready with reconnaissance report.
- General Winston is right here.
Yes, Major? Winston .
Foray successful, General.
Captain Buckley secured physical evidence for study and analysis.
Observed positive signs of violence at the target.
- What kind of signs? - Blood, sir.
Hey! A flower! ( Merritt Don 't use your hands.
Not on a flower.
- l hope it'll keep.
- lt should, in the freezer.
Now on your way.
- All right, Buckley? - Right here, Skipper.
( Merritt You're out of sight.
l'll be back in a minute.
l can 't wait to show you this.
l'm reporting to General Winston .
Very well, Major.
After l've studied the tapes, l'll let you know the findings.
(buzzer) Captain Buckley, l am not pleased at all.
What if something happened to you behind those scarps? You're my responsibility! That doesn 't seem to concern you enough to suit me.
Sorry, Skipper, but wait till you see what l found.
Where is Johnson ? l don 't know.
- l was expecting him to be here.
- Frank? He was watching me just before l found the blood.
Frank, do you read me? Frank, maybe you missed the order to return .
Frank? Frank? Frank! Frank! Frank, answer me! Where are you? Frank! ( General Winston) We are starting our counting.
lt is one hour, ten minutes to departure.
Meanwhile, neither man leaves the ship.
My orders.
Acknowledge, please.
Acknowledged, sir.
All preparations completed.
All systems go.
OK, it was my fault.
lf l hadn 't gone out of sight, you'd have kept your eyes on Frank.
You are selfish, Jack.
You are naturally careless.
Someday, you'll learn you can 't gamble solo on a trip like this.
lt takes a team effort.
Well, that's the way l really feel, Skipper.
- We're all partners, and my little pebble too.
- What pebble? Did you ever see a diamond in the rough? l was picking that up.
lt's a gem, hard as diamond.
See the bluish colour? Tell me about it on the long trip home.
This little pebble's priceless! You can 't put any value on it.
They're priceless because they're unique.
Wouldn 't it help Johnson 's family? Or Lazzari's? And the guys from the first probe.
That pebble belongs to the guys who pay our salary.
Turn out the light.
Call me in a half-hour.
That's debatable, who it belongs to.
Funny thing, that sand at night.
lt looks like the ocean at the cape.
lused to love to look at the moon on the water.
Wait a minute That's it! They're not visible enemies.
Skipper! Skipper! Thar she blows! Gotcha, you bloody killer! Hey, found you out there, didn 't l, baby? Living in the sand like a shark in the ocean .
How many of you are there? Thank you .
Calling M-2.
Calling M-2.
Come in , please.
Major Merritt here.
Chuck, it's 60 minutes to blastoff and counting.
Thanks, Colonel.
Buckley! Where are you? - What's happening? Where is Captain Buckley? - He is not here, sir.
- ls he gone too? - He may be up in control.
l'll report back.
Buckley! - Calling Earth Control.
- Winston here.
What about Captain Buckley? He left against orders.
The tension must have affected his judgement.
- Order him back.
- We are not in communication .
- He left his walkie-talkie here.
- What? - l am leaving now, sir, to bring him back.
- Are you leaving your ship without permission ? lt's less than one hour to blastoff.
What about your judgement? My judgement, General, right or wrong, tells me there is a man in danger.
He is my responsibility.
l am going to get him, sir.
Major Merritt, l must, in all fairness, give you a warning.
Since you choose to employ your judgement against my orders as project commandant, under the circumstances, there is nothing l can do.
ln effect, it reduces me to the capacity of advisor.
This is to be duly noted in your record.
lt constitutes a serious breach of military discipline.
lunderstand, sir.
Please keep your monitor open and report your progress.
Stop! Stay there! Skipper, stay there! Stay there, Skipper! Merritt! Go round! Go round the sand! The sand! The sand! Get out! Get out of the sand! Run ! Run ! (roaring) So that's our invisible enemy.
The sand is where it lives, this sea, like a bloodthirsty shark in the ocean .
( Danvers) lt is 48 minutes to blastoff and counting.
(roaring) ( Merritt l'm marooned on this island of rock, safe for now.
This sand is like an ocean .
lt seems to be rising like a tide.
And that creature waiting for him.
- Blastoff time can 't be changed.
This confirms it.
- What happens if we do change it? The vehicle would never make it back with the fuel it carries.
- Let's get all the information .
- Major - Yes, Colonel? - What about that tide? lt's coming in .
l have about a foot of rock left.
- Captain Buckley there? - l sent him to the vehicle to get some gear.
Buckley here, from the cabin .
l'm trying to improvise something that'll work.
l'm to blame for losing Captain Johnson and getting Major Merritt into this situation .
l even missed throwing our last sand shoes to him.
All l can say, Colonel, is that instead of him out there, l wish it were me.
l'm going to get my gear and go back out.
( Danvers) There are 26 minutes to blastoff, Major.
Departure cannot be delayed.
- Do you read me? - Loud and clear, Colonel.
We will try to chart a course of action for you .
Gentlemen Still 25 minutes.
What if Major Merritt doesn 't get back to the vehicle in time? There's Captain Buckley.
l'd like a more definite answer, General.
Are you considering that Major Merritt is expendable? Mr Jerome l'd like to explain how the whole picture adds up at this moment.
l can inform Captain Buckley that he is to take command of the M-2, order him to blast off on time, thus assuring her safe return to Earth .
or we can wait until Major Merritt gets off that rock, regardless of how long it takes.
That could mean we could sacrifice both men and the vehicle, plus whatever information they have collected, which would prevent this ever happening in the future.
Hal how would you decide it? l would have to go with your decision , General.
You haven 't asked my viewpoint, but were l in your place, l wouldn 't abandon Major Merritt.
lt seems cruel and inhuman , and l'm sure the public would react with revulsion and disapproval.
All astronauts are aware of the risk involved and they learn to take it.
Just what have we learned, General? What did we learn ? Learning is a step-by-step process, Mr Jerome, and if you can understand that and accept it .
then regardless of my personal feelings, that vehicle must blast off in less than 20 minutes.
l think l'm beginning to see how you feel.
l wouldn 't want the responsibility of making that decision .
Thank you .
Colonel, let's get that ship back to Earth.
Calling M-2.
Captain Buckley Come in , Captain Buckley.
Calling M-2.
Captain Buckley.
Come in , Captain Buckley.
Captain Buckley, come in .
Come in .
Captain Buckley, come in .
You'd better get back to the cabin .
Major Merritt here, General.
Captain Buckley is out here with me.
He can 't answer your call without going back to the vehicle.
- This, he seems reluctant to do.
- l'm not going to leave you alone.
General Winston , Captain Buckley is greatly overwrought.
lt would be unfair to hold his refusal against him, sir.
Major, it is now 1 6 minutes to blastoff, and no turning back.
lt is with deepest regrets that l give you this request.
lnform Captain Buckley that by my authority, you are relieved as commander of the M-2.
He is appointed to replace you .
l command him to activate all systems of his vehicle and to blast off on the minute at the agreed time of departure.
(roaring) l've got it! Skipper, l've got it! - What? - l'll be the decoy.
Listen , Skipper.
l'll run onto the sand at an angle.
- Buckley, you're insane! -Now, you listen to me.
l won 't say it twice.
l'll run that way.
That'll decoy it and let you run for it.
Buckley, get back to your vehicle! You're not paying attention ! l'm going to run whether you take advantage of it or not.
Wait for it to come for me, then you run .
l'm not asking you .
l'm telling you what l'm going to do.
That's it.
- l'm going! - Buckley! Wait! Come on ! Buckley! Head for the shore! (roaring) There's a whole army of them! Calling M-2 Calling M-2 Earth Control to M-2.
Come in , please.
Major Merritt here.
Can anybody tell me how long it is till blastoff? Chuck! For the love of Pete, what? General Winston here.
As of this exact moment, it is six minutes and counting.
All systems checked? All systems go, General, sir.
General Winston , sir Look, anything l said before, l was just kidding.
About those pebbles Can we get a ruling about who they belong to? We think they belong to the personnel of M-1 and M-2.
Let the guys who follow us find their own .
( man) Battle joined.
Casualties? Yes.
Resolution ? Victory of a sort.
A painful step from the crib of destiny.
On another day, a friend, perhaps, instead of a deadly peril.
Part of the saga of the space pioneers.