Astronaut Major Robert Gaines is the latest to orbit the Earth but something happens while there. Ground control loses all contact with him and although he returns safely, he apparently blacked out and has no recollection of what may have happened. Nor can he explain how the craft landed on land - completely undamaged - when it was meant to splash down in the ocean. When Gaines returns home he finds that little things are different: he's now a full colonel and has been for some time; his house now has a picket fence; he no longer seems to take sugar in his coffee; and even his wife senses he is different after she kisses him. It is soon apparent that Gaines has returned to an Earth in an alternate universe. Written by
In the parallel universe, a man named Anderson was responsible for the administration and supervision of the construction of the Panama Canal from 1907 to 1914. In Gaines' universe, it was George Washington Goethals. See more »
By the time the astronaut is seeing fire out his window. He would not be able to be communicating with ground control. As the spacecraft reenters the atmosphere and the outside of craft heats. Ionization occurs and radio traffic is impossible. By the time "fire" is seen through the window. Radio traffic would be impossible. See more »
In the vernacular of space, this is T minus one hour, sixty minutes before a human being named Major Robert Gaines is lifted off from the Mother Earth and rocketed into the sky, farther and longer than any man ahead of him. Call this one of the first faltering steps of man to sever the umbilical cord of gravity and stretch out a fingertip toward an unknown. In a moment, we'll join this astronaut named Gaines and embark on an adventure, because the environs overhead - the ...
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Helen (Jacqueline Scott) kisses her earth returned husband, Major Robert Gaines (Steve Forrest) and things might seem alright, after all, for an instant. Then her eyes tell you that something IS very wrong! It's as though Major Gaines has been made-up in the bedroom as he finds he's a colonel by the rank displayed on his shirt.
Solid and interesting entry, like most TZ way ahead of it's time, though the pace is rather gentle for a modern audience. As with so much of the series, the idea has been used a great many times since. There's a halfway plot twist that you might well guess. The acting is restrained because of the military characters. The picture quality helps to retain the appeal of this nice idea that could have done with a little more powerful delivery.
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