“I knew you didn't die. I knew.”
An eerie phenomenon grips the moon. Moonbase Alpha Personnel become duplicated and come face to face with their future selves on Earth again. But for how long? ITC summary
Regina Kesslann is crossing Main Mission and pauses on the stairs to the observation level, as she senses something is wrong. The rest of the Alphans start to sense the same thing. They are thrown about by shockwaves rocking the Moon as it is being pulled toward the intense gravitational force of a strange vortex in space. They are thrown again as the Moon enters. Their velocity goes off the scale before all scanners become non-functional. The rocking decreases as the moon becomes enveloped by pulsating lights of different colors. The Alphans experience double vision and a sense of disorientation, as a duplicate Moon seems to split away from them, before passing out from the ordeal.
They awaken with no side effects, with the exception of Regina, who is taken to Medical Centre. Victor tells John that their position in space has changed drastically. They find themselves entering another solar system, waiting for repairs to the scanners to tell them more. Regina finally wakes in Medical Centre. She becomes easily excitable, as she alternates between believing that Alan and Koenig are dead or alive. Helena notices that she is developing a sunburn after Regina mentions how hot the sun is.
Helena discusses her condition with John and Victor, to see if the there may be a correlation between their recent experience and Regina's condition. Victor suggests that because the Moon had been traveling faster than light, that Regina could be living a past or future life, but feeling it now. Kano enters with data about the solar system they are entering. The adjourn to Main Mission. Paul tells him there are nine planets orbiting its sun. Koenig has Paul focus scanners on the third planet. Computer confirms that it is Earth, and the Moon will be reentering orbit in 45 hours!
Paul tries to contact Earth and receives no response. In the Commander's office, John expresses his bewilderment that a space phenomenon could move them billions of light years across space to place them back in orbit around Earth. Victor theorizes that there is some frame of order to the universe, and that, ultimately, they belong on Earth.
Helena tells Regina that her condition seems to be improving. Regina attributes it to the return of her "husband"... Alan Carter, and asks why he hasn't been to see her. Helena asks Alan to come to Medical Centre. When he arrives, Regina flies into his arms, then goes into hysterics saying that he's dead. Helena is forced to sedate her, and Alan carries her back to her bed.
Helena tries to explain to Alan, who had no idea what was going on. She tells him that Regina believes she's living in the future in another place, and that Alan is her husband. She tells him that she hoped the shock of seeing him might have had a positive effect.
In Main Mission, Koenig learns that there are no controlled transmissions coming from Earth, and that there have been major geological changes. Despite these issues he feels compelled to let the Alphans know that they are going into orbit around Earth. As he is broadcasting this news to the base, Regina has a psychotic episode where she envisions herself as a specter of death, then sees her distorted image in a mirror and smashes it. In reality, she hits Dr. Mathias with a heavy object, and knocks him unconscious. She takes his commlock and heads toward Main Mission.
En route, she is approached by a security guard. She hits him in the head with the commlock and takes his stun gun. In Main Mission, Computer confirms that the Moon has entered Earth orbit. The Alphans celebration is cut short when Regina arrives with stun gun in hand. She calls out for help, but resists any attempt to help her, then cries out in pain and fires the stun gun. She drops it and runs to Alan. Telling him that she knew he didn't die, she passes away in his arms.
Victor reports to Koenig when the radio map of the Earth's surface is complete. It shows that the Earth's axis has shifted between five and six degrees, drastically altering the weather. With ice age climates in Europe, deserts and radioactive ash covering most of the Americas, there is only one spot capable of supporting life, called Santa Maria. Their meeting is interrupted when an identical Moon is discovered in orbit around the Earth.
They receive a signal identical to their navigation beacon coming from the other Moon. Another Moonbase! Koenig and Alan take an Eagle to investigate. When they land at the other Alpha, there is no boarding tube for them, so they have to walk, and enter through an open airlock.
They enter the base and find it has been evacuated, and stripped of virtually everything of practical value. Operation Exodus. Koenig figures they abandoned the base for Santa Maria. He shuts off the navigation beacon, and turns to see Alan staring out a window. Outside is a wrecked Eagle. They go out to investigate.
They enter the wreckage of the Eagle and find two bodies in the cockpit. When they wipe away the dust that had settled over the helmet's visors, they each see the other's corpse. They return with the bodies to their Alpha for examination into the cause of death. Helena performs the autopsies, and as she is covering the bodies, John walks into the room to learn her findings. She tells him that they died in the Eagle crash about five years ago, and that the vacuum of space preserved their bodies.
He tells her that he thinks the rest of the other Alphans made it to Santa Maria. She is concerned that what happened to Regina might happen to them when they get closer to Earth and their other selves. In Main Mission, Victor discovers that the other Moon is traveling faster than theirs, and they will collide in forty-eight hours. John orders the first phase of Operation Exodus. Helena tells him that only he and Alan should go, as their other selves are dead, but that she has no choice but to go to asses the medical implications.
As they fly over Santa Maria, Alan spots a settlement from the air, and picks a place to land just beyond. They disembark, and approach the settlement. John decides to start at one end, and has Alan and Helena work their way down from the other. John moves in closer and sees a hooded figure and watches as the figure becomes aware of two Moons in the sky. It's Victor.
John reveals himself to the other Victor. On the other side of the settlement, Alan and Helena approach one of the structures. Alan looks in the window to see Sandra and Helena cooking dinner. As Helena Moves to take a look, he tries to stop her. She pulls free and looks in the window. The other Helena sees her, as does Sandra, who screams, causing Paul, Kano, and Tanya to rush to their aid.
Paul and Kano have their stun guns drawn, but Koenig calls out to them before the situation can escalate. As the sun rises, Victor explains to John that this is not the Earth that they once knew. A world where mankind has never existed or has yet to be born. There are relics of another civilization scattered all over, but the "other" Alphans are alone on this Earth.
Victor is interrupted by the approach of Paul and Sandra's children, who run away at the sight of "the ghost" of John Koenig. Victor goes on to describe the risks involved with starting again, but tells John that it was worth it. Koenig says he thinks it was a wise choice. Victor responds, that he should, since he was the one who made it.
Alan visits Regina's grave, where Paul tells him of her death. Alan tells Paul that their Regina died at the same time, which Paul believe' is "hardly a coincidence." Helena meets with her other self, who asks if she understands what is going on. Helena replies that all she knows is they were the same person once. The other tells her that she had married John Koenig, and that there was so much to do, even after his death, but now her time was done. She is ready to return to herself, and through Helena find all the people she loves again.
She exits, walks over to John, kisses him, and then dies. The "other" Alphans take her away. When they return, Paul tells Koenig that if the rest of "his" Alphans try to settle there, the same thing that happened to Regina and to their Helena will happen to all of them. Sandra tells him that they have children, a future, and will not let them destroy it. Koenig tries to suggest building in another location, but they will not hear of it. The situation escalates, but Victor intervenes.
He tells Koenig that they are trapped in different times, and that when the two Moons collide, time will reset itself, but if they are not back on their Moon when time corrects itself, they will have no place to die.
Helena asks John to take them back, saying that their place, and their time is on Alpha. They take off in their Eagle as the "other" Alphans wave goodbye, and head back to their Alpha as the Moons move closer together. Back in Main Mission they await their fate. The two Moons join with the same shaking, pulsating light, and color with which they split apart.
When the turbulence settles, and they pick themselves up, one look at the big screen shows them to be in a different region of space. Alan wonders aloud whether the "other" Alphans made it, if they survived time correcting itself. Either in response, or as an extension of the thought, Koenig asks if they ever really existed. As they contemplate the unknowable workings of the universe, Helena reaches down, and picks up the bouquet of flowers given to her by the "other" Victor...
|France/Canada||Autre temps, autre lieu||Another Time, Another Place|
|Germany||Fast weider daheim||Almost Back Again|
|Italy||Un altro tempo, un altro luogo||Another Time, Another Place|
|Japan||とき月スプリットつへ||When the Moon Splits into Two|
|Netherlands||Tijd en Plaats onbekend||Time And Place Unknown|
|Poland||W innym miejscu, w innym czasie||In another place, another time|
|Portugal||Outro Tempo, Outro Local||Another Time, Another Place|
|Spain||Otro tiempo, otro lugar||Another Time, Another Place|
|South Africa||Ander Tyd, Ander Plek||Other Time, Other Place|
Shooting script 20th March 1974. Blue page amendments 25th March, 1st April.
Martin Landau made notations in his script copy including "I feel Koenig makes a lot of decisions for no reason - no building of drama..." and "Koenig is a shmuck in this script!"
According to Sylvia Anderson, Judy Geeson wanted to walk off the set, possibly after conflict with the director over her performance, or over her character.
Shooting schedule dated 1 April 1974. Filmed 2 April to 19 April 1974, with additional day on 25 April
Edited into the 1976 Italian compilation movie Spazio 1999
- Int. Main Mission (& alternative Main Mission)
- Int. Command Office
- Int. Diagnostic Unit
- Int. Alpha Corridor (& alternative corridor)
- Int. Eagle Pilot Section (& alternative Eagle Pilot Section)
- Int. Eagle Passenger Section
- Ext. Earth Surface
- Int. Living Unit
Large domes (greenhouses?) are seen in the This Episode segment of the titles; these are not in the episode.
The scene where the crew leave the "full sized" Eagle is reused in The Testament of Arkadia. The Eagle is a foreground cut-out.
The space warp effects are relatively simple but effective: flashing coloured filters, slow motion and double exposures. Note also the split screens: during the pan from the dead Koenig past Helena to the door opening for the live Koenig; also the two Helenas (Zienia Merton stood in for the opposite Helena during this scene).
Original score by Barry Gray, recorded at Wembley on Tuesday 25th June 1974.
It would be hard enough to fit two brains in one skull, let alone wire them both in. This over-literal detail was added over writer Johnny Byrne's objections. The thermographic scans seem to show just two hemispheres of a normal brain.
It would seem that the minimum "emergency" round-trip time from Moon to Earth is less than 48 hours before lunar impact, including less than ten hours of surface exploration... The required velocity would then be 8 kilometres per second to enter a low Earth orbit, followed by approx. 7km/s to move to a 130km lunar parking orbit in only 24 hours plus another 2km/s braking manoeuvre to land on the Moon. Including losses, course corrections etc., the total velocity requirement would be (2 x 20km/s = ~40km/s). This is presumably the Eagle's maximum speed.
The Moon's motion through space seems highly variable. It re-enters orbit around Earth only six days after encountering the mysterious cosmic phenomenon in interstellar space. It seems the relative positions of the two Moons does not change at first (Carter and Koenig presumably have to travel twice as far as the Earth-Moon round-trip outlined above, i.e. round-trip time of 3-4 days). Bergman only discovers the Moons are on collision course after Koenig and Carter have returned. The collision velocity seems very high as the second Moon moves one lunar diameter every six seconds, i.e. 500-600 kilometres per second (in contrast, the lunar escape velocity is only 1.5 kilometres per second!!). Perhaps time passes more quickly than usual due to the mysterious unknown force?
The Moons return to the exact same orbit as before (we presume the mysterious unknown force is at work), but one is obviously in a retrograde orbit (orbiting in the opposite direction, so they will collide). A normal orbit takes a month; if the Moon entered orbit when the other Moon is on the opposite side of the Earth it should take 7 days for them to collide (both travelling a quarter of the lunar orbit). In the episode it takes 48 hours.
The radioactive deserts suggest a nuclear war or nuclear power accident; the cause is not explained.
The geodesic domes were based on the ideas of Richard Buckminster Fuller (1895-1983), a US architect, inventor and philosopher who devised in the 1960s a spherical structure of light but strong triangular units. The structure needed no internal supports and the hemispherical shape promoted air circulation, while the low surface area diminished heat loss.
The episode states there are nine planets. According to Dragon's Domain a tenth planet was discovered in 1996. The script actually states there are 11 planets. In 2006 a new classification was agreed, in which the solar system has just 8 planets, excluding Pluto (now classified as a dwarf planet like Charon, Ceres, and Eris).
The choice of Santa Maria in California as a location that survives the devastation was inspired by a real-life study. The Santa Maria valley is known for vineyards and nearby Vandenberg Air Force Base, which tests ballistic missiles and launches satellites.
Alpha Personnel: 1 fatality, Regina Kesslann.
The "Earth" Alphans suffered several fatalities: John Koenig, Alan Carter, Regina Kesslann, Helena Russell. Alpha Technology:
Medical thermographic scans are used.
Eagles: Unnumbered Eagles travel to the second Moon and Earth
Planets: Earth (a future or alternative future?). "This is the Earth, but not the world we knew. It's an Earth where perhaps we never existed. Or perhaps we have yet to be born."
The background is mismatched in one sequence. In long shot, Helena (or her double) is immediately in front of the door. In close up, she is some distance in front of it. Also, the double's hair style is much "bigger" than Barbara Bain's (thanks to James C.). Also note: Alpha's gravity towers (as seen in Black Sun) are seen on Earth. Why? Perhaps they function as radiation shields.
A very eerie episode, especially in the scenes of the deserted Moonbase and Regina's frightening nightmare. Judy Geeson gives a stunning performance, fragile, confused, desperate (the script does not specify the sudden changes of emotion and is much less dramatic). Her long time boyfriend had recently died of a brain tumour.
One of the first episodes to focus on Alan. Also makes Koenig and Helena's relationship much more overt (their doppelgangers on the planet are married). Both Paul and Bergman get nice roles as well.
The Alphans also return to Earth in Journey To Where. The picture of Earth here is consistent with a future version of the Earth of 2120 (the remark about "a civilization once flourished here" could refer to the metrocomplexes). The script specifies the top of a tower protruding from the ashy soil- Koenig recognises it as the Santa Maria satellite tower which used to be hundreds of feet high.
- Tuesday, April 2nd - Friday, April 19th, 1974
- Tuesday, April 23rd - Thursday, April 25th, 1974 (2nd Unit)
This episode marks the series debut of director David Tomblin who was brought in to the series to replace outgoing director Lee H. Katzin. One of the film industry's most sought-after assistant directors, Tomblin's previous work included such films as Taste Of Fear (1961), The Haunting (1963), Murder Ahoy (1964) and Shaft In Africa (1973), although he had also directed series television including episodes of The Prisoner (on which he also served as producer), and both UFO and The Protectors for Gerry Anderson. As first assistant director and second unit director, Tomblin has subsequently worked on Barry Lyndon (1975), The Omen (1976), A Bridge Too Far (1977), Superman (1978), The Empire Strikes Back (1980), Raiders Of The Lost Ark (1981), Return Of The Jedi (1983), Never Say Never Again (1983), Indiana Jones And The Temple Of Doom (1984), Out Of Africa (1985), Indiana Jones And The Last Crusade (1989), Braveheart (1995) and The Man In The Iron Mask (1998).
The episode also features the first complete original screenplay by Johnny Byrne who replaced Edward di Lorenzo as the series' script editor.
For split-screen scenes on the future Earth, Zienia Merton played the duplicate Dr. Russell opposite Barbara Bain on the studio floor - her side of the screen was masked off and double-exposed when the two actresses swapped position to create the effect of two Helenas talking to each other.
Nick Tate has often cited this as his favourite episode of the series.
|Breakaway I Earthbound I Black Sun I Missing Link I Voyager's Return I Matter of Life and Death I Ring Around the Moon I The Last Sunset I Alpha Child I Death's Other Dominion I Force of Life I Guardian of Piri I The Troubled Spirit I The Last Enemy I Collision Course I Dragon's Domain I The Full Circle I Mission of the Darians I End of Eternity I War Games I The Infernal Machine I Another Time, Another Place I Space Brain I The Testament of Arkadia|
|Episodes are listed in the order suggested by Andrew Kearley.|