The Outer Limits - Original

Season 1 Episode 5

The Sixth Finger

Aired Monday 8:00 PM Oct 14, 1963 on ABC
out of 10
User Rating
57 votes

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Episode Summary

A scientist discovers a way to speed up evolution and tries out the process on a simple miner.

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  • "The Man Who Evolved"

    I believe this is my favorite episode of the series (and bearing a considerable debt to Edmond Hamilton's "The Man Who Evolved"). In this one though Hamilton's "ending as I began" conclusion is achieved from another direction, which is unfortunately the only real weakness in this episode. Why some superguy who can read minds trusts the girl who he knows full well is against the whole experiment to handle the controls for him is beyond me. Indeed, why a guy with telekinesis even needs an assistant by that point is a bit inexplicable (Hamilton addressed this point himself in his story, although I unfortunately can't quite recall how). The mad-scientist guy is certainly the stereotypical Uppity Jerk, but McCallum is very good in his role. And the girl is quite sweet and cute, although her sister comes off like somebody from Cinderella's family reunion.moreless
  • Not a bad episode....

    This episode deals with an eccentric, reclusive scientist and his determination to speed up evolution on his test subjects. The scientist, after using an ape for an early trial, decides to test his theories on a good hearted, though low educated, coal miner William, ably portrayed by David McCallum. At first, the most noticeable change to William is that his forehead increases quite noticeably along with a thirst for knowledge. Unfortunately, the increase in IQ also marks a growing disinterest in the people around him. This disinterest is shown when the scientist's maid encounters William and suffers a fatal heart attack as a result of her being frightened by his appearance.

    Emboldened by his rapidly increasing intelligence, William decides to increase his intelligence even further with the aid of the scientist's assistant ( though buyer of food and essentials might be a more accurate description). Although the episode ends in a fairly routine manner, it is overall a decent episode....moreless
David McCallum

David McCallum

Gwyllm Griffiths

Guest Star

Edward Mulhare

Edward Mulhare

Prof. Mathers

Guest Star

Jill Haworth

Jill Haworth

Cathy Evans

Guest Star

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (0)

  • QUOTES (6)

    • Gwylim: (casually staring down at dead woman) She saw me only as a monster-and it was in her mind to run to the village and arouse it's inhabitants. They would've come with their primitive weapons to obliterate me. I wanted to stop her and I... stopped her heart.

    • Control Voice: (closing narration) An experiment too soon, too swift. And yet may we not still hope to discover a method by which within one generation the whole human race could be rendered intelligent, beyond hatred, revenge, or the desire for power. Is that not after all the ultimate goal of evolution?

    • Gwyllm: The whole town must be utterly destroyed. An example must be made.
      Prof. Mathers: You're wrong.
      Gwyllm: The human race has a gift, professor. A gift that sets it above all the other creatures that abound upon this earth. The gift of thought, reasoning, understanding. The highly developed brain. But the human race has ceased to develop. It struggles for petty comfort and false security. There is no time for thought. Soon there will be no time for reasoning and man will lose sight of the truth.

    • Gwyllm: Don't be afraid. I came back because I knew you were here.
      Cathy: What have you done.
      Gwyllm: I was going to destroy everyone. Suddenly, it no longer mattered. I evolved beyond hatred or revenge, or even the desire for power. I feel myself reaching that stage in the dim future of mankind when the mind will cast off the hamperings of the flesh and become all thought and no matter. A vortex of pure intelligence and space. It is the goal of evolution. Man's final destiny is to become what he imagined in the beginning when he first learned the idea of the angels.

    • Gwylim: (playing classical music) Amazing, isn't it, the things that endure the ravages of time and taste? This simple prelude, for instance. Bach will quite probably outlive us all... Man produces little that is lasting--truly lasting. It's understandable. Fear, conformity, immorality; these are heavy burdens. Great drainers of creative energy. And when we are drained of creative energy we do not create. We procreate; we do not create.

    • Control Voice: (opening narration) Where are we going? Life: the timeless mysterious gift is still evolving. What wonders or terrors does evolution have in store for us in the next ten thousand years? In a million? In six million? Perhaps the answer lies in this old house, in this old and misty valley.

  • NOTES (0)