The Twilight Zone

The Twilight Zone

Where is Everybody?

Where is Everybody?
Mike Ferris finds himself alone in the small Oakwood town and without recollection about his name, where he is or who he is. Mike wanders through the town trying to find a living soul. The tension increases and Mike has a breakdown.

Opening Narration

There is a sixth dimension beyond that which is known to man. It is a dimension as vast as space, and as timeless as infinity. It is the middle ground between light and shadow -- between man's grasp and his reach - between science and superstition - between the pit of his fears and the summit of his knowledge. This is the dimension of imagination. It is an area that might be called the Twilight Zone.

Themes in 'Where is Everybody?'

  • Isolation
  • Human Interaction
  • Exploration

Cast and Crew for 'Where is Everybody?'

Director: Robert Stevens

Writer: Rod Serling

Starring:

  • Earl Holliman as Mike Ferris
  • James Gregory as Air Force General
  • Paul Langton as Doctor

Episode Summary for 'Where is Everybody?'

The Cafe - Scene 1

The pilot episode of The Twilight Zone starts out with an unknown man walking down a deserted country rode.

The man soon approaches an old cafe/gas station where lively jazz music is coming from the juke box. No one seems to be working although there is a kettle on the stove.

He wanders around the cafe for awhile, as he is wandering he accidently breaks a little clock that is in the kitchen area of the cafe. Right after he breaks the clock the jukebox stops playing. The clock in Where is Everybody? foreshadows the ending to the episode.

Broken Clock in Cafe in Where Is Everybody?

He helps himself to a cup of coffee and he then yells:

You got a paying customer with 2 dollars and 85 cents... American money.

At this point he mutters "sure, American". This is where we, the viewers, begin to understand that the man does not know who he is or where he came from.

The café scene ends with the man saying to himself that he will wake up "any minute", giving the viewers the impression that he believes he is in a dream.

Ghost Town - Scene 2

Still confused, he walks back out of the café and into a ghost town. The city clock tower chimes, while there seems to be absolutely no one around.

He pops his head into the little shops such as the bakery and book store, then across the way he finally sees another person sitting in a car.

The person is a woman sitting in a pickup truck across the street. He hollers across asking for a favor.. He tells the woman he hasn't seen anyone in town and he doesn't want her to think he is nuts, but he doesn't seem to know who is.

It's a real oddball thing, but when I woke up this morning well... I didn't exactly wake up, I just found myself walking on that road.

He finally walks up to the truck, as he leans on the door the "woman" falls out of the seat and onto the ground.

The "woman" is actually a mannequin. At first he is frightened, but then he begins to laugh.

He actually joking tells the mannequin:

You know, I have always had a thing for the quiet type.

I believe at this point he begins to get very worried and he begins to truly feel like he has lost his mind.

He puts the mannequin back into the truck and he begins to glance across the entire city center, it's completely deserted.

At this moment he finally realizes he might be alone for good.

At this point he then leans back into the truck to grab for the car key, there is of course no key in the ignition.

He jokingly asks the mannequin with a smirk on his face:

You haven't got the ignition key have you doll?

Phone Booth - Scene 3

The man suddenly hears the payphone across the street ring.

He sprints across the city center to reach the phone booth, he picks up the phone but no one is there, he frantically tries to reach the operator.

The "operator" finally talks but the voice is a recording on a loop. He then looks down and sees the Oakwood Alphabetical Telephone Directory

Insert Image: Oakwood Alphabetical Telephone Directory

He opens the book and reads through a bunch of the names, he asks himself:

Who is watching the stores? Where is everybody?

He then tries to get out of the phone booth but it seems to be stuck, he grows frustrated and frantically tries to open the door.

After stopping for a moment and calming down he is able to open the door. At this point we see his composure begin to slip.

The Police Station - Scene 4

Next, the man goes into the Oakwood Police Station and he says:

I wish I could shake that crazy feeling of being watched... listened to.

He then picks up the police radio and says into it "calling all cars" in an attempt to get anyone to notice him and pay attention to him.

Suddenly he sees a lit cigar in the tray at the main desk of the police station. This gives him a glimmer of hope that there may be someone in the police station.

He walks into the jail cell area and walks into an open cell where the door is open and water in the sink is running.

He says "time to wake up now" as the jail door nearly closes behind him, nearly locking him in.

Just before it latches he lunges out of the jail cell.

The jail cell door nearly closing on him symbolizes the fact that he is locked inside a world, all alone without anyone else.

At this point the main character becomes very unhinged. He leaves the jail cell running into the city again towards Oakwood High School.

The man then looks directly into the camera and yells "Where Is Everybody?!".

Insert Image of main character Yelling into Camera, could be header image for the entire episode!

City Center and Drugstore - Scene 5

The next scene opens with the man walking along the main street by the city center, when suddenly the bell tower rings, he quickly hides in a doorway frightened by the sound of the bell tower.

He then ducks into a Drugstore and casually goes behind the counter and starts making himself an ice cream sundae.

He catches his reflection in the mirror behind the counter and he goes into a monologue, talking to himself in the mirror he says:

I'm sorry old buddy, I don't recollect the name, the face is vaguely familiar but the name escapes me. I'll tell you what my problem is, I'm in the middle of a nightmare that I can't wake up from, and you're part of it!

At this point the man truly being to lose his mind as he starts talking in a manic way to himself in the mirror.

He tells himself can't wait to wake up, or at least to have someone to talk to.

He then notices an Oakwood High School Basketball Schedule on the counter of the drugstore.

Oakwood High School Basketball

1958-59 Schedule

Date Opponent Place
Dec. 5 Corinth High Oakwood
Dec. 12 Allerton High Allerton
Dec. 22 Clarion High Oakwood
Jan. 2 Manchester High Manchester
Jan. 9 Plainville High Oakwood
Jan. 16 Manchester High Oakwood
Jan. 30 Plainville High Plainville
Feb. 6 Clarion High Clarion
Feb. 13 Allerton High Oakwood
Feb. 27 Corinth High Corinth

After looking at the basketball schedule he begins to realize just how detailed his "dream" is.

He begins to spin the magazine and book racks in the drug store. One of the racks stops spinning and it stops on a book titled "The Last Man on Earth" dated FEB 1959.

He picks up the book and comes to a realization that he too, may truly be the last man alive on earth.

High School and Movie Theatre - Scene 6

The next scene opens at dusk with the back sitting on the steps of Oakwood High School playing tic-tac-toe with himself.

Suddenly lights begin to flash in the city and the man jumps up and sees the movie theatre lights flashing.

He contemplates weather or not he should walk over to the movie theatre, he then decides to investigate.

He runs over and sees a movie poster for Battle Hymn which has an Air Force man wearing the same jumpsuit that he has on.

He smiles a big smile and says "I'm Air Force, I'm Air Force!!"

He runs into the theatre lobby yelling "I'm in the Air Force!".

He wanders into the movie theatre and sits down in the back row of the theatre. He thinks to himself: "Maybe there was a bomb? But if there was a bomb everything would have been destroyed."

Suddenly the movie starts playing and he realizes somebody must have turned on "the pictures".

He runs up to the projector but no one is there, the man becomes frantic and he runs down the stairs of the theatre and ends up crashing into a floor to ceiling mirror.

Somehow we never see the camera, this was a great piece of cinematography that was way ahead of its time

He falls to the ground holding his head. He gets up stumbling, then he begins running and heads into the city center.

City Center at Night - Scene 7

He then trips over a bike, and while lying on his back, he sees a giant "eyeball" painted on the side of an optometrist's office. He gasps as he further gets the feeling that someone is watching him.

The man is on the edge of a mental breakdown, barely holding onto his sanity.

He approaches an intersection where the traffic lights are flashing frantically, he manically pushes the "walk" button on the traffic light pole.

While he continues to push the button, he continuously says "Help me, help me, please somebody help me!".

A Dark Warehouse - Scene 8

It is at this moment where we, as the viewer, are shown a group of men dressed in high ranking military uniforms watching from a dark room as the main character continuously presses the button and says "Help me, help me, please somebody help me!".

It shows the man in a small box through a small submarine like window.

One of the senior military officers says "release the subject on the double!".

As the military men run over to the box, we see the main character with multiple sensors and wires hooked up to his head.

He is pushing a random button, that looks exactly like the button on the stop light pole, and he is tapping a broken clock that looks identical to the broken clock that he knocked over in the cafe in the first scene of the episode!

The officials open the box and the man is completely passed out.

One official says to the General:

"He is ok. Delusions I think, he is coming out of it".

The General asks the official:

"Fine, did you get all of the data recorded?"

The official responds:

Hours, 484, 36 Minutes

The Ending of 'Where is Everybody?'

It turns out that the box was a simulation for a single man flight to the moon.

The General tells the press... "He cracked, delusions of some kind."

The General goes on to say that if anyone was confined to a 5 foot box for 2 and a half weeks without hearing another person, your imagination would run away too.

At this point, the man, now known as Mike Ferris, is on a stretcher and he asks the doctor what happened to him.

The doctor says:

Just a kind of nightmare that your mind manufactured for you.

You see, we can feed the stomach with concentrates, we can supply microfilm for reading, recreation, even movies of a sort, we can pump oxygen in, and waste material out.

But there is one thing we can't simulate, that's a very basic need: Man's hunger for companionship... The barrier of loneliness, that's one thing we haven't licked yet!

As Mike Ferris is brought out on a stretcher, he looks up at the moon and says:

"Hey don't go away up there, next time it won't be a dream or a nightmare, next time it will be for real. So don't go away, we'll be up there in a little while"

Historical Importance

This episode aired 10/2/1959, and man first walked on the moon on 7/20/1969.

This episode aired a whole 10 years before man actually walked on the moon!

This episode was a head of its time because it explored the isolation that would occur on the first manned trip to the moon.

Places

Resnick's Store Mannequins

Resnick's Store Mannequins Van

Oakwood Police Station

Oakwood High School

Oakwood - this is the town where the episode takes place.

Questions and Answers

Who played Mike Ferris in 'Where Is Everybody?'

Earl Holliman starred as Mike Ferris in the pilot episode of the Twilight Zone in 1959

Was Mike Ferris truly alone in 'Where is Everybody?'

No, Mike Ferris was in a 5 foot isolation box and he was only 'alone' in his own mind.

Next Episode

One For The Angels

Closing Narration

The barrier of loneliness: The palpable, desperate need of the human animal to be with his fellow man. Up there, up there in the vastness of space, in the void that is sky, up there is an enemy known as isolation. It sits there in the stars waiting, waiting with the patience of eons, forever waiting... in The Twilight Zone.