Wong's Lost and Found Emporium
|"Wong's Lost and Found Emporium"|
|The Twilight Zone episode|
Scene from "Wong's Lost and Found Emporium"
|Directed by||Paul Lynch|
|Written by||Alan Brennert|
|Original air date||November 22, 1985|
"Wong's Lost and Found Emporium" is the second segment of the ninth episode from the first season (1985–86) of the television series The New Twilight Zone. The episode is based on the short story "Wong's Lost and Found Emporium", by William F. Wu, first published in Amazing Stories, May 1983.
|“||There is a place where everything that's ever been lost can be found again. A place where lost hopes, lost dreams, lost chances wait for someone to reclaim them. But before you can find them, first you must become lost...in the Twilight Zone.||”|
David Wong (Brian Tochi), a young Asian American, has spent three years looking for a mysterious place called "The Lost and Found Emporium." He finally tracks it down in a backroom of a sleazy San Francisco porn shop; but once inside, he finds that the place has no owner or any staff.
Browsing around, David runs across an elderly woman who is apparently from downtown Fort Lauderdale. She is looking for lost time. He is not interested in her story, but suddenly, he sees an orb of light which is trying to point him to something. Following the orb, which the woman does not see, he finds a cage with mice that have instructions to rub them until they calm down. Believing that this is her chance to win back her lost time, the woman tries to do so but mice scatter and hide. She breaks down in tears and David makes a condescending remark.
The next person David meets is an elderly man who came to the emporium by accident. He eventually admits he lost the respect of his children and David grudgingly points him (with help of the orb) to a mirror, which he should look at for no less than five and a half minutes. The man begins this procedure but is disgusted by what he sees—a distorted, monstrous image of him. Unable to control himself, he smashes the mirror and then realizes what he has done. And just like with the old woman, David merely shakes his head and leaves.
As he is walking away from the man, David is confronted by Melinda who scolds him for his lack of compassion. David admits that it is his compassion he is after and explains how he lost it years ago due to racial intolerance. He mentions the murder of Vincent Chin, which was an important event for the Asian American community in the USA. Melinda offers him a deal—she will find his compassion if he finds her lost item but she does not reveal what it is that she lost. David agrees and follows the orb to an old thermos which releases a stream of vapor. After inhaling the vapor, Melinda receives her sense of humor back and then points David to his lost belonging which are in the shape of three flasks. One of which contain his compassion.
Unable to choose, David grabs the two biggest ones and smashes them, gaining back his integrity and childhood memories. But the third flask—a small white test tube—rolls away from him and is lost for good. David is visibly unhappy and soon realizes he did gain back much in the way of who he was. Compassion, to some extent, came along with it. Feeling like a man reborn, David realizes it his destiny to help other unfortunate souls find what they're looking for and Melinda stays with him as his assistant. They start their journey by helping people already in the emporium—the elderly man and woman—as even lost chances can be recovered.
|“||You won't find it in the Yellow Pages or advertised in the local papers. Its reputation is spread purely by word-of-mouth, from one satisfied customer to another. But if, like most of us, you've lost something in your time, look for this door. And if you don't find it at first, don't lose hope, because even that can be found again...in the Twilight Zone.||”|