The Twilight Zone: Season 1 Episode 10 Judgement Night

From Television and Film Character Encyclopedia

A passenger on a ship senses its impending doom.

Series Index

The Twilight Zone (1959-1964)


Narrator - Rod Serling

Carl Lanser - Nehemiah Persoff

Barbara Stanley - Deirdre Owen

First Officer - Patrick Macnee

Captain Wilbur - Ben Wright

Major Devereaux - Leslie Bradley

Bartender - Kendrick Huxham

Jerry Potter - Hugh Sanders

1st Steward - Richard Peel

2nd Steward - Donald Journeaux

McLeod - Barry Bernard

Lt. Mueller - James Franciscus

Little Girl - Debbie Joyce

Character thumbnails with links to profiles

Detailed Synopsis

In 1942, the S.S. Queen of Glasgow is floating through the Atlantic from Liverpool to New York. 1st Steward goes on deck to tell Carl Lanser that dinner will be ending shortly. Lanser goes inside and hands Little Girl her doll, which had fallen to the ground. Jerry Potter introduces himself to Lanser and invites him to dinner. 1st Steward offers him coffee and Lanser sits down at the table and is introduced to Major Devereaux and Barbara Stanley. Barbara asks Lanser if he is heading home and he tells her, he is heading away from home. Jerry asks what he does, but Lanser doesn't seem to remember. Captain Wilbur walks into the dining room and takes a seat at the table. He tells the others that the fog outside is very thick and there is no sign of the convoy. Devereaux worries about them being caught by the German Wolf Packs, but Lanser says the Wolf Packs should only target convoys. Jerry would rather be attacked by a battleship than something he cannot see and Lanser reassures him that they would see the submarine as it surfaced to attack them. Captain Wilbur tells Lanser that he sounds like a U-Boat commander and Lanser drops his coffee cup. Captain Wilbur starts asking everyone where they are from and Lanser says he is from Germany. Barbara asks him how long he was in England, and he excuses himself from the table.

Later, Lanser asks Barbara if they have met before and tells her that she looks familiar. He tells her that he has the feeling that he has done things before, and she tells him, she has had the same feeling before too. He tells her that he doesn't recall getting on the ship. He tells her that he feels like he is in a nightmare and there is upcoming doom for the ship. The First Officer walks up to Lanser and tells him that Captain Wilbur wants to see him. Captain Wilbur asks to see Lanser's passport, but Lanser doesn't have it with him. The First Officer asks him to bring it to them later and his passport wasn't on the manifest. Lanser leaves and Captain Wilbur tells the First Officer to have 2nd Steward be sent to Lanser's cabin. 2nd Steward helps put Lanser's things away and as he does, he finds a German naval officer's hat. He asks Lanser if it is a war souvenir. Lanser grabs the hat from him and sees a tag inside that reads Carl Lanser Kapitan Leutnant Kriegsmarine. Captain Wilbur calls down to the engine room and asks McLeod for more speed. McLeod tells him the engines needed an overhaul months ago. Captain Wilbur tells the First Officer if they reduce speed to save the engines then they will be an easy target, and if they speed up, the engines will break down.

Lanser goes to the bar and the Bartender tells him that it is getting late. Lanser tells him the engines sound bad. He notes the time on the clock and tells the Bartender that something is going to happen at 1:15. The First Officer walks in and asks for a tray of coffee for the captain's bridge. Lanser notices the engines have stopped, but the First Officer tells him it is probably routine, and Lanser insists they must have broken down. At 1:15, Lanser starts yelling that they must abandon ship. He goes searching for everyone and sees the light for the U-Boat. He runs around and finds the passengers all huddled in one spot. They disappear and he uses binoculars to see onto the U-Boat and sees himself commanding it. The ship is attacked by the U-Boat and all the personnel and passengers are killed. Later, Captain Lanser is in his cabin when Lt. Mueller walks in. Captain Lanser is happy about sinking the S.S. Queen of Glasgow, but Mueller worries about the ethics of them attacking a civilian ship without warning. Mueller worries that they may be damned and tells Captain Lanser that there might be a special hell where they suffer the same ways those they killed suffered for an eternity. Lanser is then transported back onto the S.S. Queen of Glasgow.