The 8 Most Bizarre Episodes of The Outer Limits
OK, now that the obligatory spooky intro is out of the way we can discuss the show, which along with The Twilight Zone, defined science fiction anthology TV in the 1960s and frankly, still hasn't been topped. The two shows are often confused for one another, and they certainly shared a lot of similarities, but one area in which they differed was The Outer Limits' willingness to get weird. True to its title, The Outer Limits often pursued storylines that were way out-there.
Also, like The Twilight Zone, The Outer Limits was revived at a later date, with a new version airing on Showtime from 1995 to 2001, and on the Sci Fi Channel for one additional season after that. The premium cable setting allowed the show to push the limits even further than before, and the rebooted series added to the original's legacy rather than retracting from it (looking at you, '80s and '00s Twilight Zones). So in honor of the reboot returning to television via Comet TV, here are eight of the weirdest episodes of The Outer Limits from throughout the show's history.
The Zanti Misfits
In this episode, considered one of the series' best, the alien planet Zanti sends a ship to, where else, California, to exile their own criminals. Sounds normal enough for a sci-fi plot, but when the aliens turn out to be ants the size of rats with creepy human faces things get strange real quick.
Cry of Silence
The Outer Limits was known for its inventive monsters (see the Zanti above), but perhaps their craziest notion was to turn tumbleweeds into alien killers in this episode. But it wasn't just tumbleweeds that turned into a menace, trees and rocks also get in on the action. It's all enough to turn even the hardiest of gardeners into paranoid wrecks.
The Sixth Finger
A man undergoes an experiment to put himself through 20,000 years of human evolution in an instant, which leaves him with super-intelligence and... a sixth finger on each hand. The plot would have made plenty of sense without the addition of the sixth finger, but The Outer Limits loved weirdness for weirdness' sake, and even named the episode after the extra digit.
We understand that aliens and monsters are meant to be weird, but this episode where a queen bee takes human form so she can find herself a human mate is on a whole other level; and her make out session with a flower was possibly the most sexual thing ever on TV up to that point. Only The Outer Limits had the creative brains behind it to make an insect this attractive.
Second Soul (Opening) 14 April 1995 by OuterLimits13
Zombie stories are hardly considered unusual for a science fiction show, and neither are alien invasions. But an alien invasion wherein the aliens exist in a gaseous state and inhabit the bodies of the dead to give themselves physical form? We'd say that counts as unusual.
Falling Star (Opening) 30 June 1996 by OuterLimits13
Singer Sheena Easton portrayed, wait for it, a singer, who is planning to commit suicide until her body is possessed by a fan of hers from the future. The future fan tells her that her music literally saves the world, and if she kills herself now that a totalitarian government will conquer the world. Kind of like It's a Wonderful Life, but way weirder.
A meek scientist is tired of everyone walking all over him, so what does he do? Why, he injects himself with aggressive primate DNA, of course! This eventually causes him to turn into a full-fledged caveman, so in other words, things don't go as planned.
A couple who are unable to conceive a child on their own so they undergo an in vitro fertilization procedure in order to become pregnant. They then learn that the doctor who performed the procedure did so using DNA from the Shroud of Turin in an attempt to clone Jesus. Yes, you read that right, this episode clones the baby Jesus!
This feature was created in partnership with Comet TV, a new TV destination for fans of classic Science Fiction and Fantasy.
You can relive The Outer Limits' groundbreaking strangeness every weekday on Comet TV, starting November 2nd. Check your local listings here.