Father and Son Game

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"Father and Son Game"
The Twilight Zone episode
Episode no. Season 3
Episode 65
Directed by Randy Bradshaw
Written by Jeremy Bertrand Finch
Paul Chitlik
Original air date April 15, 1989
Guest actors

Ed Marinaro : Darius Stephens
Eugene Robert Glazer : Michael Stephens
Patricia Phillips : Anita Stephens
Richard Monette : Dr. Wilson
Robin Ward : Narrator

Episode chronology
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"Crazy as a Soup Sandwich"
Next →
"N/A"
List of The Twilight Zone (1985 TV series) episodes

"Father and Son Game" is the thirtieth episode of the third season (1988–89) of the television series The Twilight Zone. This episode is also the last of the "first revival" of the series.

Opening narration[edit]

Don't be deceived by the youthful appearance of our subject, Darius Stephens. He abused his body for seventy-nine years. Now he's walking on his own bought-and-paid-for two feet, down a path he hopes will lead him to a new life.

Plot[edit]

The story opens in a health-care facility's rehabilitation area. A seemingly young man dressed in white with a bandaged head is prompted to walk on a treadmill, apparently after some traumatic surgery. He starts running eventually.

In his room, the "young" man is discussed by his wife, Anita, and his son, Michael, with his "doctor". They talk of the fact that a seventy-nine year old man is now in a computerized robotic body. While the wife is elated, Michael is very cynical and very suspicious. He thinks that his father is no longer alive, having died when they replaced his original brain with a prototype implant with his mind copied into it. As the doctor leaves, Darius enters the room in the middle of Michael and Anita's argument over him and his company. Michael leaves frustrated after Darius announces that he is coming back to work.

Indeed, Darius does attempt to go back to work, but Michael interrupts his day with a lawsuit claiming that Darius is not really Darius Stephens. He claims that once his brain died in his body, Darius is gone forever, and this robot is not truly Michael's father. While in a discussion with his lawyer, Darius starts stuttering and repeating certain words. Afterwards, Anita comes in while Darius is working double-time and notices the stuttering and repeating. She attempts to get him to leave the business and get rest.

The court case begins and its effect is apparent on Darius. Anita and his lawyer continue their attempts to get him to slow down. He refuses so Anita tries to help. After she falls asleep, he wakes her up and his stuttering and repeating gets worse. He starts acting strange, then begins talking in the voice of a computer going through a diagnostic and begs for the doctor. Darius ends up back at the doctor and Michael visits. He and Anita get into an argument and Darius starts having trouble. The doctors come out and say that they lost him. Michael smiles and assumes he won.

Anita goes to Darius' office and finds an envelope that states that it is to be opened by her at his death. It is a computer disc. She puts it into the computer and an image of Darius comes up and speaks to her. They discuss how Darius is still alive in the disc and that she must be his arms and legs now. She listens intently as he tells her what to do for him to prove that he is alive, in order to regain control of the company...

Closing narration[edit]

Darius Stephens, the product of a new generation of medical miracles that began with false teeth, expanded into prosthetic limbs, and reached near-godhood in plastic surgery and mechanical hearts. As we continue to second-guess and improve upon nature, we are reminded that there is more to being alive than mere flesh and blood...in the Twilight Zone.

Themes[edit]

This episode is seemingly similar in theme to an episode of the original series, "Uncle Simon" in which an inventor with a bad temper creates a robot that acts just like him to continue his inventing and torture his niece after he is dead.

See also[edit]