Night Route

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"Night Route"
The Twilight Zone (2nd revival) episode
Episode no. Season 1
Episode 6
Directed by Jean de Segonzac
Written by Jill Blotevogel
Production code 102
Original air date October 2, 2002 (2002-10-02)
Guest actors
Episode chronology
← Previous
"Cradle of Darkness"
Next →
"Time Lapse"
List of The Twilight Zone episodes

"Night Route" is the sixth episode of the science fiction television series 2002 revival of The Twilight Zone. The episode was first broadcast on October 2, 2002, on UPN.

Opening narration[edit]

Meet Melina Croner, a young woman out for a late-night walk unaware that she's about to reach a fork in the road, where she'll face a life-altering decision that can only be made in the Twilight Zone.

Plot summary[edit]

English professor Melina Croner is walking her dog, Vigo. She crosses the street and a black car almost hits her. She knocks on the hood but the driver ignores her and drives away. As she continues, a city bus for "Route 63" appears ahead of Melina. The doors open and Vigo pulls at his leash trying to get on. The driver looks out invitingly but Melina pulls Vigo back and moves away. When she turns back a few seconds later, the bus has disappeared.

Melina returns home and looks at all the photos of her happy life, including some of her fiancé, Adam. Adam enters and asks if she is okay. Melina wonders if they have a bus route in their neighborhood. The next day she meets with her mother, Devora, to prepare for her upcoming wedding. Devora cannot find any record of Melina's wedding registry and Melina does not remember the store where she arranged it. Later as she walks her dog, a strange woman addresses her by name. The same "Route 63" bus pulls up and the passengers look out at her. Vigo pulls at his leash to try to get on board but Melina pulls him away.

That night at home, Adam asks her what is wrong. She tells him what happened and points out a bus bench in front of their home that was not there before. Adam takes her out to look at it but does not find anything suspicious. As they go inside, Adam starts to go into the wrong apartment but reasons that he has had a little too much to drink.

The next day, a student in Melina's class quotes Emily Dickinson on death, and thanks the teacher for helping her. Afterward, Melina calls the transportation department about Route 63, but they inform her there is no such route. She returns home and sits on the bench outside. Adam finds her and Melina says she is starting to forget things, like how they met in college. He asks if she is testing him. She goes inside but when she washes her face, a bleeding wound appears on her forehead. A second later it has vanished. She hears the bus outside and runs to confront the driver. He looks at her blankly, and she asks him what he wants from her. The driver tells her that they are waiting for her. Melina tells him to leave her alone, and he smiles sadly and drives away.

Melina meets with her mother again and explains what she thinks is happening: she died in the car collision the other night, and the bus is Death trying to claim her. Devora is skeptical but Melina is worried that if she gets on the bus, she will die and lose the happy life she has. Devora tells her to control herself, but Melina sees the bus outside. Her nose starts to bleed, but when Devora returns the bus and the driver disappear and Melina's nosebleed has vanished.

Melina calls Adam to meet her at a diner and tries to explain what she thinks is happening. She discovers that she cannot remember meeting Adam in college. Instead she thinks he moved in next door and that is how they met. She goes to the counter to get coffee and the girl there recognizes her as one of the coffee shop workers. When Melina turns around, Adam is gone.

Melina runs home and discovers that all the photos of her and Adam are gone, and her engagement ring has disappeared from her hand. Vigo runs outside to where the bus is waiting and gets onboard. The driver is there and strokes the dog, then invites Melina on board. She refuses. The driver sadly explains that the bus is not Death trying to steal her life, but an opportunity to begin a better life. The life she thinks she is having turns out to be just an illusion of her fantasies.

As the bus leaves, Melina sees herself and Vigo lying in front of the car that ran them over. The neighbors have gathered, including Adam and a blond girl who is his real fiancée. Vigo suddenly comes back to life, but Melina does not. No one remembers anything about Melina except that she worked at a coffee shop and never spoke to anyone outside of work, according to a barista that she trained. As Adam and his fiancée walk away, they pass through Melina, who is now fading away from existence.

Closing narration[edit]

Pity. Poor Melina Croner. She spent her entire life too afraid to live it and lost all hope at happiness. Making the wrong choice can be fatal in the Twilight Zone.

Episode notes[edit]

The episode bears a resemblance to "The Hitch-Hiker" from the original series.

External links[edit]