The Outer Limits (1995) s04e17 Episode Script

Lithia

1 ARIEL: When it came to pass that the men of the Earth could not make peace among themselves, and so took up arms against one another, the fires of hatred rained down upon the land, laying waste to all that was good and gentle, Those who survived saw death and destruction all around, and it was called what? Hmm? -Phoebe? -The Great War, Yes, And in the days that followed there was more death, as a miasma called "fallout" bore down upon the survivors, But even then, the men who had made of Earth a fiery hell, saw not the error of their ways, and so the Goddess raised her mighty hand, and wrecked vengeance upon them, and the men who remained fell victim one by one, to what? -Nomi? -The scourge? That's right, And the scourge cleansed the Earth of evil, singling out the men, and leaving the women unscathed, And the Goddess saw that the evil was gone and the men were no more, and she unfurled the fingers or her hands, and she made a sign of blessing upon the females, who now inherited the sea and the sky, the land and all its bounty, and when the males of the Earth had vanished, so too did wickedness and war and hatred, and the peace and the glory of her kingdom was restored, And let us say, "Praise Goddess," ALL: Praise Goddess, (MAN EXCLAIMING) (GASPING) (EXCLAMATIONS) Shh, it's all right, (PANTING) (GROANING) Help me, (GIRLS SCREAMING) CONTROL VOICE: There is nothing wrong with your television, Do not attempt to adjust the picture, We are now controlling the transmission, We control the horizontal and the vertical, We can deluge you with a thousand channels or expand one single image to crystal clarity and beyond, We can shape your vision to anything our imagination can conceive, For the next hour, we will control all that you see and hear, You are about to experience the awe and mystery which reaches from the deepest inner mind to The Outer Limits, CONTROL VOICE: Evolution teaches that the failure of a species to adapt will result in extinction, but could an entire gender fall victim to the same immutable loss? Feeling better? Much, thank you, I'm called Hera, the elder, I see you've met my grandchild, Ariel, the teacher, This is Sarah, the healer, and Celeste, our baby nurse, What is your name? Oh, that's a good question, You don't know your name? Well, I'm still a bit foggy, I've been in deep cryo, You were frozen? Hang on, a little bit of it's coming back to me, It was an experiment, I volunteered, -What's the date? -March 9th, -The year, what year is it? -2055, 55? 40 years, It was supposed to be six months, Then you remember the Great War? I remember how it started, I was in the service, My name is Mercer, Major, US Army, We won, didn't we? No one won, How bad? How many were lost? Over 7 billion, 99% of the Earth's population, -Oh, God, -That was before the worldwide starvation, the attrition from radioactivity, and the scourge, -GIRL: He's crying, -That'll do, children, Everyone, outside, Come on, Is this some sort of girls' school? No, this is our enclave, Lithia, So, uh, where are your men, in the fields? I didn't see any when I got here, You might say they're in the fields, That's where they're buried, So, my war wasn't the last one? Oh, no, it was the last one, -Something I'm missing here? -The scourge, It was a mutated virus that killed only men, It was men who brought the war and it was men who paid the ultimate price, So, your town, your enclave, there are no men at all? No, Not here, not anywhere, 40 years? No men, What about those kids? Even in your day, the technology existed, Frozen seed from the last of the survivors, There's enough stored for generations, But, even still, males must have been born? They didn't survive more than a few days, weeks at the most, I want you to tell me this is a nightmare, I want to wake up, What I can tell you with certainty, Major Mercer, is that you are the last man on Earth, (CHILDREN PLAYING) Phoebe, Phoebe, come here, You saw him, is he as handsome as they say he is? Well, I don't know, I've never seen a real man before, only the picture people, He looked so strong, -Did he? -He can't stay here, The Council won't allow it, PELE: His arrival is a curse, The Goddess is unhappy with us, HERA: Perhaps, but it may also be a test, A test of what? Our goodness, our faith, our morality, How do we know he doesn't harbor the same disease which decimated the others? What if his arrival is a blessing? Miranda, please, Well, of all the world's enclaves, he finds ours, There's only one devil, Would his arrival be a blessing too? I just don't think we should react out of ignorance, I mean, what if he's been sent to restore the balance? (CHUCKLES) There was no balance when men ruled, Miranda, Believe me, I was there, I know, I have no fondness for one who worships destruction, but I believe that if it was a woman who came to us hungry and in need, we wouldn't turn her away, Ariel's right, we are measured by our generosity and kindness, and we can't possibly make an exception just because he's a man, I still think we're making a big mistake, -Pele, we can't starve him, -No, I'm serious, -(BELL RINGING) -A message from the Council! Greetings, Lithia, Greetings, Pontella, I wish I were bearing better news, The austerity measures we instituted the last solstice, - won't be lifted as I had hoped, -(SIGHING) There were weather-related shortfalls in the crops of many of the enclaves, yours included, Rations will have to be cut by another 10%, and the tithe will be increased a like amount, We hope this will not impose too much of a hardship on your citizens, We'll manage, Pontella, We're sure the Council wouldn't institute these measures without good reason, Thank you for your understanding, Hera, More austerity, There's barely enough as it is! All the more reason to banish the man, You have to tell them eventually, you can't keep something like this a secret, No, but we don't want to cause a panic, Now, we'll deal with the newcomer without the Council's assistance, for now, Is that agreed? Pele? Agreed, (ROOSTERS CROWING) (GRUNTING) I've been sent to wake you, -What time is it? -Time to work, (SIGHS) Good morning, This is how you grind your wheat? Ever since the waters diminished, Here, you can take the outside position, (WORKERS PANTING) Men can't be trusted, you heard what Hera said, Hera's memories grow dim, The war killed everyone she ever loved, believe me, she remembers, -Are you jealous? -Why, should I be? Of course not, But what's the matter with you? I'm exhausted, Come here, I'll wash your back, (MOANING) (GASPS) Sorry, They said that I was supposed to shower before the meal, That's all right, the shower's for everyone, -Miranda! -What? Pele! Don't be shy, we're all one family here, When the waters powered the wheel, we processed three times the amount of grain we do now, What happens to the grain you don't get to? Some of it goes bad, most of it we give away before it does, When did the river dry up? When they repaired the old dam upstream, Who did? Hyacinth Enclave, They're trying to restore portions of a century-old hydroelectric power plant, and they're hoping to be able to barter power the way we do flour, Let me get this straight, this other enclave, they dammed up your river and now your paddle wheel won't turn, That's right, but you can't blame them for what they did, Really? Why not? Their soil is poor, They can't produce food for themselves, much less to trade, Besides, we can still use labor to turn the wheel, I'm sorry, but where I'm from, that's highway robbery, They have children, as we do, and a larger population, They have to survive too, I understand, but not at your expense, I mean, you can't take care of the whole world, you have to look after your own first, Those are the very beliefs that led to war, You know, in my day, these rural paddle wheels sometimes had an electro- mechanical system as a backup, Ours did once, but it's been broken for a long time now, Yeah? You mind if I take a look at it? Be our guest, but we don't have the electricity to power it, even if repairs could be made, Well, what about those power lines I saw? Relics of the apocalypse, Major, Your apocalypse, MERCER: So, uh, Ariel, do you do much traveling? What for? Everything we need is here, What about over to that other enclave, the one with the dam? Miranda's the trade representative, She's visited Hyacinth on a number of occasions, why? I don't know, just thought maybe, sometimes curiosity might get the best of you, I'm curious about you, You got questions, fire away, -What was it like? -What's that? Life before I was a popsicle? Well, Hera's told us about the world before the war, but her perspective is that of a woman, Well, we had our problems, I don't mean between nations, I know all about that, I mean, between men and women, Oh, yeah, we called that the battle of the sexes, (CHUCKLES) The battle? Guess we know who won, -You didn't always fight? -No, no, Most of the time it was pretty damn good, Thanks, So was there someone special? A wife? No, I never did marry, but, there was, there was someone special, Must have been very difficult to leave her behind, Yeah, it was, I'm sorry, I didn't mean to bring back bad memories, No, hey, memories are all I've got, or what there is of them, What about you? With relationships, I mean, There's no one, if that's what you mean, I was just wondering, I mean, there's nobody around here but women, Don't flatter yourself, Major Mercer, those women are very contented, (GRUNTING) I hope I'm not interrupting, Not at all, In fact, I was just getting nowhere fast, What a shame, I was hoping we could elevate ourselves from the status of oxen, Listen, uh, Ariel tells me that you're the one in charge of bartering with the other enclaves, Among other things, yes, Well, how long before this Hyacinth enclave would be ready to have electricity they could trade with us? -Us? -Well, as it were, Well, from what I'm told, they're only beginning to produce marketable power, but it's controversial, The Ruling Council's leery of the whole idea, Yeah, you get electricity, before you know it, somebody turns on a light, You mock us, but our ways have served us well, Yeah, (GRUNTING) Why don't you take a break? You must be tired, Well, I've been resting for about three or four decades, A little hard work feels good, Do you know what else feels good? PELE: Miranda, are you in there? Miranda? I've got to go, Come on, -Hera, tell us a story, -Oh, past your bedtime, Just a short one, please? It's all right, Celeste, it's all right, -Tell us about the olden days, -Yeah, when you were young, (GIGGLES) Oh, fans of ancient history, I see, There were men before the war, right? Of course there were, I even know that, Did you ever fall in love with one? With a man, I mean, Yes, uh, I suppose, once, A long time ago, -Did you get married? -We had plans, What happened? Didn't he like you? Yes, he liked me very much, but like most young men, he chose to go to war, Did he die? -Yes, I'm afraid he did, -That's sad, -What was his name? -Jason, Was he handsome? (CHUCKLES) Yes, he was very handsome, Do you miss him? I still keep this to remember him by, -What is that? -It's the locket he gave me, Do you wish things were the way they used to be? With men and everything? No, I don't waste my time wishing for things like that, I think Ariel likes Major Mercer, Oh, that's enough, (LAUGHS) -(LAUGHS) Good night, Girls, -GIRLS: Good night! HERA: Sweet Dreams, What are you looking at? Sorry, I was just, um, ,, I just have to know, Know what? What I have been missing, Is that a problem? Oh, No, That's no problem at all, Come here, There you go, (BREATHING HEAVILY) (GENTLE MOANING) (GASPS) (SOBS) MERCER: The mill's motor is almost operational, It's not that we don't appreciate your efforts, Major Mercer, but, as I told you, there's no way we could possibly power it, With your permission, Hera, I'd like to explore future trade with the Hyacinth, Flour for electricity, Once they have Council approval, Miranda! We have gotten by for two generations without a power source, But it doesn't have to be that way, It's by choice, Major Mercer, We choose not to depend on machines, Clearly, you don't understand, You've never understood, Men can't seem to grasp the value of simplicity, Well, we're not talking about nuclear power, just a few amps, Please, Hera, Well, as long as no pressure is applied, I suppose there's no harm in talking to them, We've heard rumors of men in suspended animation but we thought they were myths, I certainly never expected to meet one, Well, the pleasure is all mine, Now, what do you think of our proposal? -It's a just one, I believe, -I wish it were simply a matter of justness, Even among our own citizens, there is no consensus that this undertaking was a wise one, And as you probably know, the Ruling Council won't allow us to go much beyond testing our capacity to produce electricity until the ramifications are fully debated, Well, considering the hardships your dam has imposed, I think you can make an exception for Lithia, All we're asking is that you trade us a few kilowatts of power per season, If and when we get our approvals, I promise you we will give your enclave the highest priority, How long is that going to be? The Ruling Council has asked to study the matter for another year, perhaps two, -Well, that's not soon enough, -I beg your pardon? (ELECTRICITY BUZZING) You're producing power now, Why not share some of it? Miranda, perhaps you can explain to this man what our code of honor is about, Oh, I know about your code of honor, Take care of your own first, -Thank you for your time, -Give our regards to Hera, I want the hunters to organize into small patrols, -What kind of patrols? -The man was armed with a laser pistol, I'm concerned about what he might do, You're not suggesting we take arms against a human being? We will pray to the Goddess that it never comes to that, but it would be irresponsible not to protect ourselves, We have redrawn the levies, It will take effect immediately, 20% of your trade goods will be collected for the Ruling Council's distribution, Essentials and allocations will continue to be supplied on a need basis, so please keep us current on your supply status and your productivity, Until we speak again, Praise Goddess, ALL: Praise Goddess, Well, so much for the austerity measures being moderated, We can't possibly give the Council another 20%, Well, what would you have us do, Miranda? Rebel? Oh, is that a dirty word too? I'll remind you that you are here at our pleasure, Major Mercer, It would be unwise to place any additional strain on that relationship, Right, It's just that Miranda and I passed the distribution poles on the way back from the dam, I don't understand, What's the significance? Well, the power lines running into Lithia are just a stone's throw away from one of their transformers, Now, I could easily tap into that transformer, hook us back up, and nobody's going to know the difference, You want to steal their electricity? There's enough power in that river for both enclaves, And you have just as much right to it as they do, More, because you had it first, So who's stealing from whom? We do not steal, Major Mercer, We do not lie, we do not cheat, I did not ask to be here, Hera, but I'm here, Now let me do something, (LAUGHS) I've known many like you, Major, You've always gotten your way, you can't stand being thwarted, -Ariel! -All I ask is you think this through, -Ariel! Just listen for a second! -Mercer! You don't need her, You don't need anyone, No one but me, I'm your only convert, and the only one who can bring your plan to fruition, There's some old cable locked up in a storage shed, I can get the key, How's it going? Almost there, We did it, Miranda, I couldn't have done it without you, You can thank me later, -I'll see you in an hour? -Yeah, If you ever come near Miranda again, so help me, I'll carve you a new smile, (MOTOR WHIZZING) (LAUGHS) Hera! Hera, can you hear it? The great wheel, it's turning on its own! What you did was wrong, Miranda! No good will come of it, We can produce more wheat in 24 hours than your workers can in a week, When the Ruling Council finds out, we will be punished, Mercer says we're already being punished, Don't you people see what's going on? There are enough resources to go around, You Ruling Council is going to squeeze the other small enclaves just like yours, They're going to tax you into oblivion, At least now, you've got a fighting chance, Women don't fight, Major Mercer, We cooperate, You think you have us all figured out after five days, but obviously you haven't learned anything about who we are, What I do know, Hera, is that no good leader would stand by and watch her community slowly be taxed into starvation, I suppose we needed a man to save us? This is not about men and women, It's about standing up for our rights, Since when did we acquire the right to plunder from our neighbor? You don't want to survive? I'll unplug the damned thing, You don't see the irony in this, Major Mercer, your telling a community of women how to survive? When your gender has all but disappeared? (LOUD BANGS) (GIRLS LAUGHING) Wanna try it? Let's go up a little closer! All right, Now, you just look right through here, sight right through there, What are you doing? Scoot, both of you, Where did that come from? Cryo-capsule, Soldier doesn't go far without his weapon, This is our day of rest, You're disturbing the tranquility, -Hera wouldn't be happy, -Hera hasn't been happy since I got here, Neither has anybody else, no matter what I try to do to help you, -What about you? -What does it matter what I think? -Oh, it matters? -Why? It does, What wrong? Nothing, Yeah? You sure? Now that wasn't so bad, was it? No, It was good, (MECHANICAL SQUEAKING) The motor stopped working, The electricity's been shut off, I've got to go, MERCER: Yeah, they cut it, all right, Here, -What do I do with this? -Cover me, Please, Stop what you're doing and get down, You can tell your people that we're only taking what's rightfully ours, I said get down! I said please! Please, get down! MIRANDA: What do I do? MERCER: Stop her, (CRIES IN PAIN) Oh my God! What have I done? (GASPS) Mercer! They had a long bow trained on me, Miranda fired her weapon in defense of my life, I could be dead right now if she hadn't had the guts to shoot, A citizen of Hyacinth would still be alive if it weren't for your ill-advised marauding, You want me to take the hit? Fine, I just want the chance to make amends, I want to bring Miranda back safely, But law, they have the right to keep her, And she could end up losing her life because of my mistake, An eye for an eye is men's idea of justice, I'm going to bring her back, Hera, With or without your blessing, I'll come with you, Mercer, I'm not abandoning Miranda now, I'll come too, If you'll have me, You have your gall, Major Mercer, I didn't come here to cause any trouble, I just want Miranda back, She slew one of our own, -Where is she? -She's alive and well, But until the Council rules, she will atone through her labors, Look, if you want to blame someone, blame me, I'll take her place, Please, Major, How could a man possibly take a woman's place? All right, Then we'll trade a woman for a woman, (WHISTLES) (WOMEN GASP) Bring out the wrongdoer, WOMAN: Bring the wrongdoer! Now then, Nice and easy, Let her come forward, First, lay down your weapon, Not a chance, (BANGING) Elysse! Run! Hold it, Right there! (GASPING) WOMAN: Stop it! (WHEEZING) (WHISPERS) Enough! I say enough! (GASPING) I finally found someone, This is madness! WOMAN: Lay down your weapons! All of you! (WHISPERS) It's not fair! (GASPING) HERA: We beseech you, oh Goddess, to lift up the souls of our dearly departed, And make of them a sign in the heavens, that they will always know our love is constant, (WOMEN WEEPING) And to those who would try to change us, who would try to bring the old ways back into our midst, let this be a warning, We will never, never succumb to the Devil's enticements, Males worship death, Females, life, Men destroy but women endure, And let us say, "Praise Goddess," WOMAN: Praise Goddess, Praise Goddess, (WOMEN WEEPING) Impetuous, stubborn, you're so much like him, I just came by to tell you I'll be leaving at first light, Where will you go? Someplace I can get a second chance, While you were gone I reported to the Ruling Council, I told them all about your arrival, That's just all the more reason for me to get the hell out of here, To my surprise, they knew all about you, You're not the only man on Earth, Major Mercer, There are 11 others, They found you all in cryonic suspension during an excavation, And they decided to place each of you near an enclave, And then arranged to have you revived, One by one, -Go on, -Well, it was to be an experiment, you see? They wanted to see what would happen if men were reintroduced into the world, And from what they tell me, in each case it was a disaster, There was violence, jealousy, Evil ran rampant, You still don't understand, do you? That fact is for you, for all men now and forever, this was your second chance, MERCER: What I did, I did because it was right, If I find someone in need, I want to help them, I see someone in danger, my instinct is to protect them, To be strong, It's who I am, I'm a soldier, I'm a man, MERCER: No! Listen! Listen, we're not that different! Not down deep, we all want the same things! Just to be happy and live and raise our children and love each other! Please! I don't want to die! Please, just one more chance! Just one more chance, Hera, please! Oh, God! Goodbye, Jason, What did you say? What did you call me? MERCER: I never told you that! How did you know my name? MERCER: How did you know? HERA: I'm sorry, MERCER: Wait! How did you know my name? Please! Please! No! No! No! Help me! (SILENTLY) Please, help me! (CRYING) CONTROL VOICE: The differences between men and women have been debated among philosophers since recorded history began, If indeed males by their nature are the aggressor, it is this quality that