The Twilight Zone: Season 1 Episode 29 Nightmare as a Child

From Television and Film Character Encyclopedia

A woman meets a little girl who seems to know quite a lot about her childhood past.

Series Index

The Twilight Zone (1959-1964)


Narrator - Rod Serling

Helen Foley - Janice Rule

Peter Selden - Shepperd Strudwick

Markie - Terry Burnham

Doctor - Michael Fox

Police Lieutenant - Joe Perry

Little Girl - Morgan Brittany

Character thumbnails with links to profiles

Detailed Synopsis

As Helen Foley is walking to her apartment, she sees Markie sitting on the main stairs. She says hello to her and Markie tells her that she knows all about her. Helen invites her into her apartment to have some hot chocolate and Markie knows she doesn't like marshmallows in her hot chocolate. Helen brings Markie a cup of hot chocolate and Markie tells her that she doesn't like things that are too hot and mentions the time Helen was burned and her scar. She asks Helen if she remembers how it happened and Helen tells her that she can't remember. She tells Markie that she can't remember a lot of things from a certain age. Markie asks Helen if people look familiar to her sometimes and asks specifically about today. Helen tells her that she did recognize someone and Markie knows it was at the school and that it was a man and he frightened her. Markie tells her that the man frightens her too and then tells Helen her nickname is Markie. They hear a noise and Markie runs out of the backdoor of the apartment in fear.

Peter Selden knocks on Helen's door and tells her he knew her mother. Helen opens the door and recognizes him as the man at the school. She lets him in and he tells her that he knew her when she was ten or eleven and that he briefly worked for her mother. He asks her if she remembers what ever happened the night her mother was killed. He tells her that he heard her screaming that night and was the first one to find her. She tells him what she remembers from that night and Peter asks her more questions on what she remembers. She picks up Markie's glass of hot chocolate and sees that she didn't drink any. She tells him Markie's name and Peter tells Helen that Markie used to be her nickname. Helen hears Markie singing and she tells Peter that some things are starting to come back to her. He shows Helen a photo he has of her when she was a child and she looks exactly like Markie.

Peter leaves and Helen lays down on the couch. The night her mother was murdered comes back to her and she hears Markie singing again. She opens the door to her apartment and Markie is on the stairs again. She asks Helen if she remembers about Markie and when Helen pulls back Markie's sweater, Markie has the same burn. They walk back into the apartment and Markie tells her that she is Helen when she was ten years old on the night of the murder. When Helen turns around, Peter is standing behind her. He admits to killing her mother and then attacks Helen. She runs away and during their struggle, Peter falls down the apartment building stairs and dies. Later, a Police Lieutenant speaks with a Doctor who tells him that Markie was her inner voice warning her about Peter. Helen hears singing and when she goes outside her apartment she sees a Little Girl and tells her that she has a lovely smile.