Masters of Science Fiction: Season 1, Episode 4

The Discarded (25 Aug. 2007)

TV Episode  -   -  Drama | Sci-Fi
6.3
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Ratings: 6.3/10 from 260 users  
Reviews: 5 user | 2 critic

Based on a short story by seven-time Hugo Award winner, three-time Nebula Award winner and Science Fiction Grand Master Laureate Harlan Ellison ("A Boy and His Dog," "Star Trek"). Story of ... See full summary »

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Title: The Discarded (25 Aug 2007)

The Discarded (25 Aug 2007) on IMDb 6.3/10

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Cast

Episode cast overview, first billed only:
...
Himself - Host (as Professor Stephen Hawking)
...
Samswope
...
Bedzyk
...
Barney Curran
...
Annie
...
Harmony Teet (as Lori Triolo)
Donny James Lucas ...
Steve (as Donny Lucas)
...
Frenchy
...
Bucky
Leanne Adachi ...
Sharon
...
Smiler
...
Samswope 2 (voice)
...
Sis
...
Nate
Ken Kramer ...
Schmool
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Storyline

Based on a short story by seven-time Hugo Award winner, three-time Nebula Award winner and Science Fiction Grand Master Laureate Harlan Ellison ("A Boy and His Dog," "Star Trek"). Story of despised minorities forever adrift in the darkness of outer space. As a last resort born out of their loneliness and despair they are forced to make an ominous pact with those responsible for their plight, in the hope that they will finally be offered refuge at home on Earth. Written by Anonymous

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Drama | Sci-Fi

Certificate:

TV-14
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Release Date:

25 August 2007 (USA)  »

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Trivia

In her discussion of Malthus, Annie says, "Too many people on Earth. No place to stand. The sheep look up." Scriptwriter Harlan Ellison was likely thinking of the 1972 dystopian science fiction novel by English author John Brunner entitled "The Sheep Look Up." The phrase comes from the poem "Lycidas" by Engish writer John Milton: "The hungry sheep look up, and are not fed, But swoln [swollen] with wind, and the rank mist they draw, Rot inwardly, and foul contagion spread: Besides what the grim Wolf with privy paw Daily devours apace, and nothing said, But that two-handed engine at the door Stands ready to smite once, and smite no more." Ellison got it slightly wrong: the problem with the sheep (to overlook Milton's political and religious subtexts) is not that there are too many of them, but that they are starving, and with starvation come disease and the wolves that can easily prey upon them. The shepherd (the "two-handed engine") can't feed them, but can only try to fend off the wolf. Science fiction author Henry Kuttner also took a title from this verse for his 1955 story "The Two-Handed Engine," co-written with his wife C.L. Moore; that story is very different from Ellison's, but shares the themes of a minority of people who may be wronged, and of guilt. See more »

Quotes

Samswope: Come on, Bedzyk, it's not that bad. We'll find a landfall. We will. All in the fullness of time.
Bedzyk: Ah, come on, Sam. We've been to all six terraformed types in the system. Some of them more than once. Always the same. 'Keep moving, scum, hit the road, get lost, and take this piece of junk with you.' If we had any sense, we'd fly this garbage scow right into the Sun. Better still, crash it right up there.
[They look up at planet Earth]
Samswope: Ah, yes. Into the bosom of our succoring Mother Earth.
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User Reviews

 
Excellent Adaptation of an Even Better Story
8 May 2008 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

This man who reviewed this episode giving it one star is a fool. Far from saying that IMDb would-be critics are a case of the emperor having no clothes, they are in many cases jibbering naked idiots running around poking berries up their asses. He has only one piece of prescient commentary in the entirety of his above drivel, which is the error in which he refers to this episode as a "movie". It is indeed something of a mini-cinema verite experience, shot with all the filmic intensity and dramatic sincerity that one could manage on the shoe string budget ABC gave the producers of this genuinely hit-or-miss anthology series.

Bravo to Harlan and the producers for trying. To paraphrase a famous television critic "television is a medium because it is neither rare nor well done."


4 of 9 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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