Remember when television seasons ran for 30 weeks or more? When so many episodes were produced during the year that the summer rerun season wasn’t enough to repeat them all? Those days appear to be long, long gone (do the networks even rerun stuff anymore?). These days a show starts a new season, runs for 13 weeks, and then vanishes until almost a year later (but gets a DVD/Blu-ray release before the next season starts). I miss the old days, when a show occupied a time slot year-round. Same day, same time, same channel… that’s where it lived; where you could always find it, new episode or not.
Fifty years ago tonight, The Outer Limits aired its very first repeat, launching an 18-week look back at its triumphant first season. We’ll address the first half here, and the other half… well, halfway through.
5/11/64: Specimen: Unknown
5/18/64: The Sixth Finger
5/25/64: The Man Who Was Never Born
6/22/64: Corpus Earthling
6/29/64: It Crawled Out of the Woodwork
The first batch of reruns is a mixed bag. It starts off on a seriously questionable foot with “Specimen: Unknown,” possibly the worst episode of the season (feel free to argue; I know many of you would rate “The Special One” beneath it, maybe “Production and Decay of Strange Particles” too). We do get mostly top-grade episodes throughout, though I’d argue that both “The Human Factor,” "Moonstone," and the aforementioned “Specimen: Unknown” should’ve been ignored in favor of episodes that weren't repeated at all. For your reading (dis)pleasure, here are the episodes that were never reprised:
Kinda horrific, ain't it? I know not every worthwhile episode can be repeated, but there were certainly enough grade-A episodes to fill the entire summer without revisiting the lesser efforts
As you’ll see in a couple of months or so, the second half of the summer will include choices that are even more mystifying.