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Recap / The Outer Limits 1995 S 5 E 13 Summit

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The Control Voice: Buried deep within the heart of every conflict lies a territory known as common ground. But how do we summon the courage to seek out its borders?

Earth has a diplomatic meeting with an alien race, but things go wrong.

The Control Voice: Only with the realization that, what we share with our enemy is greater than what divides us, can peace ever be won.

Tropes:

  • Bald of Awesome: The original human ambassador comes out this way, as well as Posser.
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  • Bottle Episode: This episode takes place almost entirely in a small base on a barren planetoid.
  • The Butcher: The Dregocians view Thurman as a war criminal. He is affronted to find this out.
  • Colonel Badass: Thurman is a vigilant (albeit perhaps to so) veteran of the war who helps overpower Portis when he attacks the Dregocians.
  • Communications Officer: Seccor, to the humans, being in charge of the various tech at the summit bunker, including the radios.
  • The Confidant: Morris to Kate, being the only one of the group who seems familiar with her before the summit.
  • Fantastic Slur: Many humans refer to Dregocians as "Dregs."
  • Good Is Not Soft: Posser is wieling to negotiate but demands proof of good will before taking steps to stop the fighting.
  • Heroic Suicide: This episode has an almost literal example when the sole survivors of a peace summit offer to kill themselves to prove their sincerity and ensure that the peace treaty they negotiated before terrorists murdered the other representative party was accepted.
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  • Hero with Bad Publicity: Colonel Thurman is despised by the Dregocians for having starved many of them by withholding shipments of food, but he protests that this was because the food was tainted and would have killed or sicken anyone who ate it, and that he actually went to a lot of trouble to divert it when many didn't care about the health consequences and had no problem with getting the Dregocians sick. Ambassador Prosser doesn't believe Thurman, but its strongly implied that he is in fact telling the truth.
  • Human Subspecies: Humanity created a genetically engineered subspecies called Dregocians or "Dregs" to mine trion ore on the inhospitable planet of Dregocia. The Dregocians have yellow skin, yellow eyes to reflect the harsh light of Dregocia's sun and a third lung which allows him to breathe the planet's thin atmosphere. Although humanity attempted to breed leadership abilities out of the Dregocians, they nevertheless retained them. Five generations after their creation, the Dregocians seek their independence from the United Coalition and conduct numerous terrorist attacks to that end.
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  • Knight in Sour Armor: Thurman, who comes across as gruff and perhaps sinister, but does ultimately aide the peace conference rather than sabotage it, being well aware that the fleets fighting each other will wipe out everyone. He simply doubts that peace can be achieved.
  • Morally Ambiguous Doctorate: Portis, who is utterly racist against the Dregicians, subjected them to tests to make them seem subhuman in the past and is willing to kill when things aren't going his way.
  • Nice Guy: Morris, who is the one to first argue letting in Posser and Gorum in order to reestablish diplomacy.
  • Poor Communication Kills: The Dregocian delegation's shuttle is destroyed in an ion storm as it approaches the planetoid where it was supposed to hold peace talks with the human delegation. The shuttle's last message accuses the humans of sabotaging it. The human and Dregocian motherships destroy each other in the chaos that follows. The human delegation detects both sides preparing for war and determine that they will come into firing range of each other's fleets in three hours. As their transmitter is damaged, the humans cannot alert either side that it was all a terrible misunderstanding.
  • Porn Stache: Seccor's mustache applies.
  • The Quiet One: Ambassador Prosser's aide Gorum probably has the least dialogue out of the seven characters in the bunker.
  • Rank Up: Kate takes over the mission after the primary ambassador is killed by falling shuttle debris.
  • Secret Test of Character: Posser is fond of these, such as when he sabotages part of the base to see how the humans will react, and whether or not they will care about him and Gorum.
  • Technicolor Eyes: The Dregocians have yellow eyes.
  • Turned Against Their Masters: Humanity is on the brink of war with a race of yellow-eyed humanoids. It is eventually revealed that they were created by humans as laborers in off-world mines with eyes to see in the dark and a third lung to breathe in low-oxygen environments. They rebelled and built a fleet to rival that of the humans.
  • Upper-Class Wit: The original ambassador has some, firmly telling Thurman (who wants to cancel the summit out of suspicion due to the aliens being late) that he does not want to start things off on the wrong foot and leaving before the summit even starts would count as the wrong foot.
  • War Hawk: General Thurman is suspicious of the Dregocians and quick to advocate force, although after some Character Development he's ultimately willing to die in order to stop a war.
  • The War of Earthly Aggression: The Dregocians, a genetically engineered Human Subspecies, have wrested control of their adopted homeworld Dregocia from the United Coalition authorities and are seeking complete autonomy. They are engaged in a terrorist campaign against Earth in the hope of securing it.
  • Wide-Eyed Idealist: Kate isn't free of bitterness, but is convinced in the summits ability to end the war, as is Morris.
  • You Are Better Than You Think You Are: Morris gives Kate a speech to this effect as she doubts herself.
  • You Are in Command Now: Kate, when the previous ambassador dies, although Thurman initially argues to be in command himself.
  • Zombie Advocate: Kate Woods' husband Brian was a professor at Sumner University and a strong advocate for the rights of Dregocians. His views made him very unpopular with most other humans to the point that he received death threats but his work was widely read by Dregocians. Ironically, he was killed by a bomb planted by Dregocian terrorists. However, he was merely an innocent bystander as opposed to the target.
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