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A man, John Hathaway, walks the empty streets of a colony on Mars past a sign announcing an evacuation. He remembers telling his family that someone will come some day. He looks to the sky and watches for anything that might move. He then goes out into the nearby desert and checks a signal dish, and then goes to his home. Inside, his wife Cora and their two children Tom and Margurite quietly wait. Cora asks if everything is okay and he assures her it is. After sending the children to bed, Cora goes outside and asks John if he's thinking over the past again. He admits there's nothing else to think about, and tells her to go inside while he goes for his evening walk. He walks to a nearby cemetery where three gravestones rest, marked with the names of his family, and begs their forgiveness for doing what he did and admits he was lonely. John looks up again and hopes that a rocket will come after twenty years. ..Read the full recap
Based on the Ray Bradbury short story "The Long Years" also known as "Dwellers in Silence". This story was first published in MacLean's (September 15, 1948).
Filming location: Calgary
John Hathaway: I created... recreated my family. I reprogrammed the new ones with all the memories of what they had been, what they could still become. And now they are my family.
Captain Wilder: You've been living with androids for 20 years.
John Hathaway: With memories. My memories. In the end, that's all anybody has.
Cora: He told us this would happen one day. But he didn't want us ever to feel sad or cry. He said, "The worse thing for anyone is to know how to be lonely, sad, or cry." So he didn't teach us.
Changes from the short story:
- John has one less child.
- The ending is changed by having the androids create an android John to replace the one they've lost.