In a futuristic totalitarian world, meek and mild-mannered librarian Romney Wordsworth finds himself on trial for being obsolete. This future society has decided on everything people need to know. There is no God and there are no books. Society doesn't need librarians. Romney makes an impassioned plea about his rights and free will but the judge in the case, the Chancellor, will have nothing of it. The jury finds Romney obsolete and orders him to be executed. As he can choose the method of his death, Romney's plans include a little surprise for the Chancellor.Written by
The definition of the character Subaltern means Junior Officer. See more »
At the beginning, the Subaltern is heard to say, "Wordsworth, Romney, obsolescence," but his lips are not moving. See more »
Stand where you are. No further. You have been removed from office. The Field Investigators have declared you "Obsolete".
You have disgraced the State, you have proven yourself a coward; you have, therefore, no function. You are Obsolete!
But I'm not. I'm not obsolete!
YOU ARE OBSOLETE!
YOU ARE OBSOLETE!
You're making a terrible mistake, a tragic mistake! I'm not obsolete! I *work* for the State, I *believe* in the state! I help give ...
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An episode with a theme near and dear to Serling's heart: intellectual freedom and the will and power of the "little" guy. It's an obvious tribute to novels like "1984", and while not as well executed as that novel, there is something to be said for the startling visuals presented on such a low budget that bring to life the horrors of a totalitarian regime. My only criticism is the ending -- not to give anything away, but did they run out of money for something better? Regardless, this is an episode that makes you wonder what today's political realities and quasi-religious governments would have inspired Serling to write.
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