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The Twilight Zone Season 1: Episode 7 - The Lonely

Loneliness, to some it can be a sentence worse than death.  That's the sentence of one convicted murderer, given 50 years on a deserted asteroid with human contact only four times a year.  Being truly alone for such a long period of time can make you insane, make you long for the simplest of human interaction, and as this convict will soon discover loneliness will lead you to cling to any form of interaction, no matter how artificial it may be... in The Twilight Zone.

Story - 8/10 - James A. Corry is sentenced to 50 years on a deserted asteroid as punishment for murder.  According to him it was self defense and there appears to be quite a few people who believed him but obviously none of those included the ones who sentenced him.  One who does seem to take pity on Corry is Captain Allenby, the Captain of the supply ship that drops off provisions every three months.  Along with the necessities to sustain his life, Allenby also brings Cory things to help sustain his sanity, on this occasion he brings a robot in the form of a human woman.

Characters - 7.5/10 - The Lonely poses an interesting quandary which I believe completely changes how one can ultimately feel about this episode.  If Corry truly is a murderer does he really deserve any sympathy?  If Corry truly was falsely imprisoned for self defense then I can somewhat feel sorry for the character, even though having my own asteroid and no one around to bug me seems more like a vacation to me not a prison.  Either way, one thing I didn't particularity understand or like was Corry's reaction to the introduction of Alicia.  For someone whose been alone on a deserted rock for four years, would anyone really shun a robot whose looks and acts exactly like a real and beautiful human woman?  Granted it doesn't take Corry long to appreciate her company but his initial reaction was completely unrealistic, especially for a man on the brink of insanity.

Classic Value - 8/10 - The only thing that could have improved the classic value of this episode for me is if we never knew Alicia was a robot.  If the story had simply begun with Corry and Alicia already on the asteroid it would have made the ending completely shocking and would have been an excellent twist.

Moral of the Story - 6/10 - Unlike the first six episodes there really seemed to be no moral to this story, unless you want to say "if you do the crime, be willing to do the time", but if Corry is indeed innocent then that wouldn't fly as a lesson.  Although one thing that can be grasped from this episode is how common it is for humans to latch onto things when human interaction is either not desired or available.  While we don't have robots today I think many people turn to their pets as almost a replacement for human interaction, it's a creature who is always going to love you and never judge or disappoint you.


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