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The Outer Limits: The Zanti Misfits

The authorities of the highly-civilized planet Zanti force Earth to take their exiled criminals and demand that a desert area be set aside for them. However, a couple breaks the quarantine, threatening to set off an interstellar war.

Episode Info  

Episode number: 1x14
Airdate: Monday December 30th, 1963

Director: Leonard Horn
Writer: Joseph Stefano

Guest Stars
Michael TolanMichael Tolan
As Professor Stephen Grave
Olive DeeringOlive Deering
As Lisa Lawrence
Robert F. SimonRobert F. Simon
As General Maximilian R. Hart
Claude WoolmanClaude Woolman
As Major Roger Hill
Bruce DernBruce Dern
As Ben Garth

Bill HartBill Hart
As Corporal Delano
Bob Johnson (1)Bob Johnson (1)
voiced Radio Newscaster / Zanti Regent / Zanti Commander
Vic PerrinVic Perrin
voiced Zanti Prisoner
George SimsGeorge Sims
As Computer Technician
Joe E. TataJoe E. Tata
As Radio Operator
Lex JohnsonLex Johnson
As Communications Operator
Michael T. MiklerMichael T. Mikler
As Air Police Sergeant
Main Cast
Vic PerrinVic Perrin
voiced The Control Voice


In the ghost town of Morgue, CA, Major Roger Hill drives Professor Stephen Grave up to a seemingly abandoned hotel. Hill activates a buzzer and a sentry takes his papers and goes back inside. While they wait, Grave looks around. The major looks up at the sky and Groves asks if he saw "them." Hill says it was probably a bird and figures that their visitors may come in the daytime since they have nothing to fear. Groves asks why they're allowing it to happen, and Hill says that they have no choice. He explains that they were told when the penal ship would land and instructed to stay out of its way "or else." When Groves wonders what the "or else" was, Hill says that they wanted a non-violent sequence but promised to attack if anything went wrong. The major thinks that "they" either superhuman... or subhuman...

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Episode Notes
Filming Locations: "Ghost Town Street," MGM Studios; Vasquez Rocks, CA

Episode Quotes
Opening Narration: Throughout history, compassionate minds have pondered this dark and disturbing question: What is society to do with those members who are a threat to society, those malcontents and misfits whose behavior undermines and destroys the foundations of civilization? Different ages have found different answers. Misfits have been burned, branded, and banished. Today on this planet Earth, the criminal is incarcerated in humane institutions, or he is executed. Other planets use other methods. This is the story of how the perfectionist rulers of the planet Zanti attempted to solve the problem of the Zanti misfits.

Professor Stephen Grave: History has been recorded in some pretty morbid places, Major. But when a historian named Grave finds himself in a ghost town called Morgue...

Professor Stephen Grave: I wonder what they're like.
Major Roger Hill: From our viewpoint, Professor, they're either superhuman or subhuman.
Professor Stephen Grave: Or non-human.

Ben Garth: Lisa, we can never turn back, not you and me. A runaway wife and a three-time loser must always go forward.

Ben Garth: I'm going to tell you something, you're not going to believe it. But I'm going to go ahead and tell it anyway. I would never kill a reasonable man.
Lisa Lawrence: Ha. Open the windows, Ben, you smell bad when you lie.

Major Roger Hill: Fifteen minutes is not a long time. In our conception of time. For them it could be long enough to conquer a world. When a country allows itself to be coerced, it has to suffer the consequences.
Professor Stephen Grave: So far the only real consequence is uncertainty.
Major Roger Hill: I've always felt that was one of the worst things a country could suffer.

General Maximilian R. Hart: If they retaliate, it means death, suffering. Broken bodies and broken hearts. I can't let everybody break.

Professor Stephen Grave: I've studied history for years, Max. Even before anyone said I had to. Big moments, small moments, some so insignificant they barely got recorded. But it isn't like being there. It isn't, and I'm always conscious of it. Always aware that the clean edge of participation is missing. I'd give anything to be there just once, alive and awake.
General Maximilian R. Hart: I suppose you'd have liked to be at Hiroshima.
Professor Stephen Grave: If I could have helped.

Lisa Lawrence: No. All botched up now. I--I tore all the seams apart. To see what held it together. And--and then I couldn't get it back together again. I... I did that with a--with a ragdoll. I... done it with my own life. And now here I am... all torn apart. By my own hand. Mine own executioner.

Zanti Commander: This is the commander of the government of the planet Zanti. I speak to you from Zanti. You have destroyed the misfits. We will not retaliate. We never intended to. We knew that you would not live with such aliens in your midst. It was always our intention that you destroy them and their guards, who were of the same spoiled persuasion. We chose your planet for that purpose. We are incapable of executing our own species, but you are not. You are practiced executioners. We thank you.

Closing Narration: Throughout history, various societies have tried various methods of exterminating those members who have proven their inability or unwillingness to live sanely amongst their fellow men. The Zantis merely tried one more method, neither better nor worse than all the others. Neither more human nor less human than all the others. Perhaps, merely... nonhuman.

Episode Goofs
As the Zanti prisoners emerge from the only hatch on the ship, the two pieces of broken wood are initially to the left of the hatch...

But they jump to the right in the next shot, indicating where the film editor mirrored flipped the negative in post-production.

The two pieces of wood also visibly move from frame to frame, indicating where the stop-motion artists failed to properly secure them in one spot while moving the Zanti puppets.

Other Episode Crew

CreatorJoseph Stefano  |  Leslie Stevens
Executive ProducerLeslie Stevens
ProducerJoseph Stefano
Associate ProducerLeon Chooluck
MusicDominic Frontiere
Music SupervisorJohn Elizalde
Key GripHenry Maak
Set DecoratorChester L. Bayhi
Property MasterRichard M. Rubin
Script SupervisorHope McLachlin
Production CoordinatorElaine Michea
Director of PhotographyJohn M. Nickolaus, Jr.
Art DirectorJack Poplin
Production ManagerLindsley Parsons, Jr.
Sound MixerJay Ashworth
Special EffectsHarry Redmond, Jr.
Film EditorAnthony DiMarco
Special Creature DesignWah Chang
CostumerForrest T. Butler  |  Sabine Manela
Assistant DirectorRobert H. Justman
Production ExecutiveDominic Frontiere
Music CoordinatorRoger A. Farris
Production AssociateJohn Erman
Story ConsultantLou Morheim
Sound Effects EditorArthur J. Cornall
Make-up SupervisorFred B. Phillips
Optical EffectsM.B. Paul
Stop Motion AnimatorAl Hamm
Special Photographic EffectsRalph Rodine  |  Paul Lebaron  |  Jim Danforth
Supervising Film EditorRichard K. Brockway
Chief ElectricianNorman McClay
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