Wolf 359

The Outer Limits (1963)

Wolf 359, directed by Laslo Benedek.

Scientists recreate an entire planet in miniature to study its accelerated evolution. Something evil emerges.

This could have been a first season episode: mysterious and thought-provoking. Harry Lubin, who did all of the second season music, provides an unusually eerie and menacing score.

The alien is obviously a simple two-handed puppet but that is ok. Its simplicity raises the right questions. The way it folds and unfolds makes us wonder as to its origins: nature or something supernatural?

Questions that are not answered:

The intimations of evil are so well done here: everyone knows something is wrong: "The kind of death that has no peace". The ending is a let down: I wish they could have come up with something better than "smash/destroy".

Patrick O'Neal always had fascinating aristocratic coolness, and those piercing eyes.

We have several "lasts" in the cast and crew:

Sara Shane had a small filmography, but I remember her as the bush pilot in Tarzan's Greatest Adventure (1959), where young Sean Connery had a good villain role:


It certainly looks like our couple are sleeping in the same bed. She has a sexy nightgown, they are slightly drunk and fondle hands in the fade out, which is about as hot as it got on TV that year...

...before she bolts upright in the night, sensing the Evil. The coyotes outside know about it, too. Well done.

The science lab has an ant farm. I'm so jealous. Bring on the sea-monkeys.

The Blu-ray commentary track is by Craig Beam, alternately informative and annoying.