Tuesday, October 1, 2019

Episode 22: The Enemy - 10/3/67

A woman drives up to a gate in a jeep, and as she gets out to open the gate, hears the hum of a spacecraft. Looking up, she sees the craft begin to spark and sputter as it descends behind a hill and then explodes dramatically, as huge fireballs rise into the air. She jumps into her jeep and heads toward the scene of the accident.

Amazingly, the ship is still mostly intact, though obviously damaged and glowing pink. One of the aliens begins to drag a metal box labeled "Utah Dept. of Mines" out of the ship and collapses. Another alien in distress emerges from the ship and makes his way over to his buddy with the box, who begins to glow red and disintegrates.

He begins dragging the box away from the ship, and when he's a good distance away, he fires on the ship and vaporizes it.

He opens the box and removes several ampules that he stuffs into the pocket of his standard issue alien jumpsuit. He hears a car drive up and begins to aim his phaser, but just as the woman from the jeep appears, he keels over.

Starring Roy Thinnes as Architect David Vincent

Guest Stars:
Barbara Barrie as Gale Frazer

Richard Anderson as Blake

Paul Mantee as Deputy Vern Hammond

Written by:
John W. Bloch

Directed by:

Act I

For two days, planes have crossed and recrossed the Utah wilderness, searching for some clue to the fiery object witnesses swear plunged from the sky. But the planes find nothing, and the investigation is called off. Only one man continues the search. For somewhere in the forbidding mountains, may be the remains of an alien spacecraft. 
David drives past boarded up buildings to a gate labeled 'Frazer'. Despite the No Trespassing sign, he opens the gate and drives in. The woman's jeep is parked outside a small ranch house where the alien peers out a window with binoculars. He stumbles as he comes away from the window, and the woman says it's starting again and suggests that he have another injection, which he refuses. She insists that he let her help him with his pain.

He asks why she's so concerned about him and why she didn't let him die after seeing his spaceship and realizing what he is. He questions why she doesn't display the fear emotion that humans are supposed to show when they see the Invaders. She responds that she's just returned from a year in Vietnam and that nothing will frighten her again after what she saw there. He says she's never seen anything like him, and when she suggests that he trust her, he scoffs at trusting a human. He says that humans fight, hate, kill and betray each other, and wouldn't hesitate to do the same to him. When the phone rings, he whips out his phaser and points it at her.

Deputy Vern is calling to hit Gale up for a date, but she puts him off with the excuse that she's got to get her ranch into shape, and suggests they get together in a few days. Once off the phone, she points out that not all humans betray each other, and her alien houseguest responds by ripping the phone cord out of the wall. He goes to the window and sees David Vincent's car driving up. She says she doesn't know who it could be, and he tells her to find out and get rid of the unwanted visitor.

She hops into her jeep with a shotgun that the alien emptied of shells, and drives out to block the entrance to the property as David Vincent drives up. He gets out and identifies himself, asking to speak with Mr. Frazer. She introduces herself as Miss Frazer and informs him that it's her ranch. She asks what he wants and he tells her that he's trying to get up into the mountains to investigate whatever it was that fell there a few nights prior. She tells him that the land is private property and that unless he has government business there, he's trespassing. He decides to explain why he wants to go there, but she shows him the business end of her shotgun and tells him to get out, which he does.

The alien observes from the window, and then grimaces in pain and falls down.

David drives a ways away and stops his car to consult a map. He gets out and begins climbing up an embankment, back onto the property.

Gale tends to the sweaty alien, who is giving her the third degree about who the guy was. She tells him that he wanted to go to the area where his ship crashed and said he wasn't looking for a plane. He says he's got to get over to the clearing and she insists he's too weak, shoving a glass of water in his hand. She says Vincent won't find anything since he destroyed the ship, but he says that a box is hidden there, and he needs to finish his buddy's mission, since he failed to land him safely. She asks him to wait until his friends arrive in the afternoon and send them to get it. He asks her to help him.

David is at the clearing and easily locates the box, just as Gale and her alien friend come up behind him. He points his gun at David, but Gale stops him from shooting him.

He says David is going to carry the box to the jeep, so David hefts it up, and as he approaches the alien, thrusts it toward him, knocking him back, and they engage in a scuffle.

David easily wins when the alien freezes up and falls spread eagle on his back. Gale approaches the alien and David tells her to get back, but she insists that he's suffering and says she intends to help him.

So, a nurse who's seen action in Vietnam has decided to help one of the Invaders, demonstrating that not all humans have an impulse to kill beings from other planets before first getting to know them. David will probably be hard pressed to prove to her that the Invaders' plans for Earth are not benign. 

Act II

Deputy Vern comes in from the blustery, dusty air with the Sheriff, saying the storm is going to be a big one and that they should warn the ranchers. Two men in black arrive at the station and the Sheriff tells Vern to go call the ranchers while he sees to the visitors. The men enter and shake his hand with extended pinkies in an obvious manner.

They claim their company just bought the mine and asks how they get up there. He asks why they would want to do that since the mine's run dry. He says they'll find ore like they found that flying saucer. They ask about it and he explains that it came down behind the Frazer place, and that it must have been some kind of trick or the government men would have found it. He tells them to turn around and head up into the hills three miles to get to the mine, and suggests they try Henry's if they're hungry.

David is binding the unconscious alien's hands with rope in the jeep as Gale protests. She says she's proved she's not one of them to David and that she's just a nurse who wants to help. He tells her that the alien's body is a shell and that he's not in pain. She claims she's treated enough wounded men to know he's in shock and David suggests they get him to a doctor then. Gale says she has medication at the ranch to help him. David observes the aliens hands go melty and says he's reverting to his own form and won't survive. Gale pleads with him to get him to the ranch and they hop into the jeep.

Vern is on the phone as the Sheriff blows in the door and tells him he's reached everyone except Gale.   The Sheriff tells him to head up there and warn her in case she wants to come into town until it blows over. He also says he knows how Vern feels about Gale and suggests that he give her some time since she's been through a lot. He tells her to say he sent him there on official business.

David looks down on the sleeping alien whose melty hands are still bound as he lies on a bed at Gale's house. Gale is preparing a syringe while David informs her that the reversion stopped and only affected his hands. He tells her that she should understand that the Invaders are there to take over the Earth and she asks how he knows. He says he's seen what they've done there, and she insists that humans are the killers and the Invaders had to defend themselves. She asks how he knows they're not there on a mission of peace. She says the alien could have killed her, but David insists that he needs her to keep him alive until he finishes his mission. She says all that humans know how to do is kill, and that anything unlike them doesn't stand a chance. David says they need to get him to town. She tells David to untie his hands while she gives the injection.

Vern comes across David Vincent's abandoned car and looks up at the threatening sky.

Gale asks him to tell her more about the reversion process, in case she might be able to help. He tells her the only person who's seen an alien in its natural form went insane. He says they can't survive on Earth in their native form, and she thinks that disproves his theory that they're trying to take over the world, since they can't survive there. He suggests the answer may be in the box. She tells him the alien was going to deliver it to the mine they bought. She says that if they turn him in and he dies, then they killed him, and she's had enough killing.

The alien regains consciousness just as Vern shows up at the ranch. Gale begs David to let him go and he insists he won't be harmed. He goes out to meet Vern with alien gun in hand. He introduces himself to Vern, who asks where Gale is. He asks what he's got and David tells him it's a gun and that he has a sick prisoner inside, and that he'll explain when they get him to town.

Vern goes inside and asks Gale what it's about. They head to the bedroom where the alien now pretends to be asleep. David notices his hands are back to normal and the alien kicks Vern out of the way and grabs the gun, knocking David back, as he shoots Vern in the chest. David and Gale stare in shock as Vern glows red and disintegrates. David says, "A mission of peace," as Gale buries her face into his shoulder.

Did David Vincent let the alien get the drop on him just to give him a chance to prove his motives aren't pure? Poor lovelorn Vern never even had a chance. Will Gale continue to defend her Invader friend, insisting he was just defending himself, up until he decides to turn the ray gun her way? 


The two alien mine owners are back at the Sheriff's office as he tells them their map is not right. He points out that the main shaft is over by the Frazer place. He offers to call his deputy at the Frazer place to tell him to keep an eye out for their man, since he won't want to be caught out in the storm, as the Frazer road will wash out. The Sheriff begins calling for Vern as the aliens leave his office.

Gale's alien houseguest hears the Sheriff attempting to contact Vern on his car radio and approaches Gale and David Vincent. David tells him to get rid of them, but the alien claims he needs them. Gale asks if he had to kill Vern and he responds that he was no use to him. Gale does not seem to understand the alien's lack of emotions, despite him denigrating primitive people who are ruled by emotions. She asks him if they'll also die when he's done with them. His lack of response answers her question and she apologizes to David for not listening to him. The alien says he is beginning to revert, but Gale refuses to help him. He tells her he knows how valuable even one life is to her and that she won't sacrifice David's life by refusing to help him. David tells her to do as he asks, claiming the longer he stays alive, the better their chances for stopping him.

David asks why they've gone to the trouble of buying a mine company and the alien tells him they are using the mines to move equipment for their experiments. David confirms that material for their experiment is in the box, which the alien says he will deliver that afternoon. Gale says he won't be able to deliver them if he has another attack since he smashed the only syringe she had when he killed Vern. He demands that they go to the village for another one.

The Sheriff is calling around looking for Vern when Gale drives up in her jeep with David and the alien. He asks if she's seen Vern and she says she hasn't. He tells her it was a good idea to come into town before the storm, but she says she's only stopped in with some friends to pick up supplies. The alien sees them looking in their direction and points his phaser at David. He calls to Gale saying they should get back. He asks if she's sure she hasn't seen Vern and she says, "I wish I could tell you that I have." The Sheriff pauses to think and then passes by the jeep.

The alien mine owners are following the trail where the box was dragged, noting that there were survivors.

Gale is driving through the stormy night and refuses to let David take the wheel, claiming she knows the roads and it keeps her occupied. The alien in back says he's starting to revert. They reach the mine and David says they should get inside. The alien insists they give him the car keys and bring the box inside with them. David lifts the heavy box and Gale helps the alien to walk inside the building. She empties a bag of medical supplies while David starts a fire to heat water. Gale turns to the alien with tears in her eyes as she holds out the syringe and the container of green liquid, and when she confirms he needs it, allows it drop from her hands and crash on the ground, causing the green liquid to glow red and vaporize. She says she can't help him anymore as David looks on shocked.

The alien mine owners are looking through an empty alien medicine vessel at Gale's house and realize that he took the box with him to the mine. They head out into the storm to go get their box.

So, Gale throws David under the bus, since the alien threatened to kill him if she didn't help him. Perhaps she's thinking they can take the alien down while he's in a weakened state, or she just doesn't care if he kills them both and accomplishes his mission even if he does revert. We'll see if she has totally screwed up or if David can improvise and win the day in Act IV. 

Act IV

The alien mine owners reach the building where the jeep is parked outside. Inside the building, the alien is puzzled by why humans fight to stay alive and then ask to die. He says there are plenty of others to take on his mission if he dies. David asks what's in the box, saying if they're going to be killed, he wants to know why. He tells them the materials in the box will help them experiment to find out if they can change their chemistry to be able to utilize oxygen while in their native form. Gale asks if they'll go away if it doesn't work and he tells her they'll simply eliminate oxygen and kill all life on Earth. David claims he hasn't been fighting to stay alive to complete his mission, but that he's like humans and is afraid to die. David appeals to him to spare their lives, but he says he needs to carry out his responsibility before he dies and raises his gun toward them. David tosses the table up, knocking the alien back stunned and causing the box to slide off and release a vapor.

He and Gale escape out the door and run into a mine tunnel as the alien observes the box glowing red. He follows them into the mine and they can see that he's reverting even as he continues to make his way toward them with phaser drawn in his melty hands. He takes a tunnel that leads away from them and they make their way through the tunnels that lead to her place. David attempts to climb a rotted ladder that falls and causes rocks to tumble down through the shaft, alerting the alien to their location. They duck down when they see the alien enter the area they are in and he walks right by them. They get up and dash around the corner as the alien calls for them to wait.

They are about to make their way out of the tunnels when they run into the two alien mine owners. They tell Gale and David that they got caught in the storm and just made it. David glances at Gale and they ask what's wrong as the alien staggers out of a tunnel towards them, exposing his melty face as he asks his alien buddies if they're Lavin and Sawyer. Lavin calls him Blake and asks where the box is. He tells them it's destroyed and says he needs help, but Lavin says there is no help. He tells Sawyer to get rid of them all, but as Sawyer raises his gun to comply, Blake fires on them both.

He appeals to David for help and asks him to do something to stop his pain. David picks up a gun and shoots Blake.

Fortunately for David and Gale, Blake turned out to be a talky alien rather than one who likes to start shooting right away. It could be that Gale's kindness toward him allowed him some compassion for the humans in the end, especially after his own kind refused to help him. 


Gale tells David she's never seen such a bad storm and that she couldn't have gotten through it without him. He asks what her plans are and she says until they take over, she's still a nurse with lots of people who need her. She expresses regret for killing a man, and though David claims he wasn't a man, she says he was to her. He says he's sorry Vern had to die, and she has no response other than to ask him to drop her off in town. She asks his plans and he says he supposes he'll do more of the same.

David Vincent's war is unrecognized, unheralded. Its battlefields can be anywhere–anywhere the Invader has carved out a stronghold. David Vincent's war will have no ending until the Invader is driven back to his own worldor until he has made David Vincent's world his own.

Gene Lyons as Sawyer
Russell Thorson as Sheriff
George Keymas as Lavin

Director of Photography:
 Andrew J. McIntyre

Music by:

In case there was any confusion, this episode confirms that the Invaders are determined to make Earth their own, even if it means killing all life on the planet in the process, harkening back to "Wall of Crystal" when the idea of changing Earth's atmosphere to make it habitable to Invaders was first introduced. They can't help their lack of compassion since they are not emotional beings, so there's no guilt over killing humans. 

Despite being down on human emotion, Blake must have had the mutation that allowed for alien emotions introduced in "The Mutation," since he feared pain and death, going so far as to ask David to euthanize him, since he couldn't do the deed himself, as most aliens have done in the past by hitting the self-destruct button. Blake is also different from other aliens in the past who have glowed red and vaporized when reverting to their original form. It could be that the Invaders have done other experiments to change their forms so they don't immediately die by reverting, though it's not clearly explained, and you really have to work the imagination to get there. David tells Gale that the only person to see an Invader in their natural form went insane, but when Blake is finally revealed in alien form, it's difficult to see why. 

Gale is not a very sympathetic character in the end when she expresses regret over killing Blake, while David is the one to show any sorrow over Vern's death. With the Vietnam war as a backdrop to this episode, it's hard not to infer some comment on pacifists who might have been seen as having more concern for 'the enemy' than their own people. 

While it's hard for me not to like any Invaders episode, this one had too many bothersome inconsistencies, though it's the disappointing reveal of the alien in its natural state that really knocks the alien pinky rating down on this episode for me. They would have done better to keep that lumpy humanoid form in shadow and leave it to our imaginations as they did in "Genesis." 

Stay tuned next week to see Russell Johnson take a turn on the Invaders along with Don Gordon, Harold Gould and Lynda Day.

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