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Recap / The Outer Limits 1995 S 5 E 19 Stranded

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The Control Voice: The longing for adventure and discovery burns in the heart of every child. But no drive is stronger than a child's need for a parent's love.

A boy who is neglected by his father sees a stranded alien as a father figure.

The Control Voice: It is said that love and truth walk hand in hand. But if the need is great enough, can we learn to love a lie?

Tropes:

  • All Guys Want Cheerleaders: Brad has a crush on an older cheerleader named Cindy Parker. This later proves to be his undoing as Tyr'Nar assumes Cindy's form so that he can lure him into the ship and eat him.
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  • Ambiguous Ending: The episode ends with Tyr'Nar having killed and succesfully impersonated Kevin's awful father, which Kevin may or may not know. This cliffhanger leaves a lot of questions as to what would happen next. Is Tyr'Nar planning to kill Kevin as soon as he becomes a nuisance or does he intend to become his new father, possibly as some sort of Evil Mentor? He did claim to sympathize with Kevin while manipulating him for his own ends, but if he viewed Kevin as nothing more than a tool to ensure his freedom, he could have just eaten him immediately. It's unlikely he'd be able to leave the planet anyway with the bounty hunter's ship damaged, so he may still be weighing his options while planning on laying low for a while.
  • Asshole Victim: The Jerk Jock Nelson Tyler bullies Kevin Buchanan and his best friend Brad on a daily basis. After Kevin receives a neuromuscular enchancer from Tyr'Nar, a fight with Kevin lands Nelson in hospital with a concussion.
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  • Evil-Detecting Dog: Kevin Buchanan's German Shepherd Cody takes an instant dislike to Tyr'Nar while Kevin is completely taken in by his manipulations. Tyr'Nar solves the problem and satisfies his appetite by eating Cody.
  • Jock Dad, Nerd Son: A nerdy teenager with an interest in science is neglected by his sports-oriented father, who openly favors his more jock-like older brother (who's actually pretty nice towards him). When an alien bounty hunter's ship crash lands nearby, this makes the kid more open to an offer of friendship from the alien, who turns out to be the bounty hunter's criminal.
  • Literal Maneater: The stranded alien fugitive at one point transforms himself into a hot girl to lure a teenage boy closer so he can eat him.
  • Lovable Jock: Kevin Buchanan's elder brother Josh is a jock and a genuinely nice guy.
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  • Monster Munch: Tyr'Nar eats Kevin Buchannon's German Shepherd Cody and later his best (and only) friend Brad.
  • More Teeth than the Osmond Family: Tyr'Nar has a huge number of razor sharp teeth.
  • More Than Mind Control: The neuromuscular enhancer that Tyr'Nar, a telepathic shapeshifter, gives Kevin Buchanan has a mental component as well as giving Kevin Super Strength. It makes Kevin more susceptible to Tyr'Nar's attempts to manipulate him. After Kevin gets into a fight with his bully Nelson Tyler who is badly hurt in the process, he feels very guilty about it until Tyr'Nar convinces him that Nelson got what he deserved. Immediately afterwards, Kevin tells his father Alex as much when he confronts him about Nelson's condition. Later still, Tyr'Nar emerges victorious after his fight with Alex, whose form he assumes. He tells Kevin to keep wearing the enhancer as it will make him stronger but the true reason is that he will make it easier for Tyr'Nar to manipulate him further. It is implied that Kevin is aware that Alex has been replaced by Tyr'Nar.
  • Parental Neglect: Kevin Buchanan is continually neglected by his father Alex, who frequently claims that he has no time for him but seems to have all the time in the world for his elder son Josh. Tyr'Nar takes advantage of Kevin's distant relationship with his father to convince Kevin to help him. Kevin's mother Danielle admits that she likewise spends far more time with Josh than she does with Kevin.
  • Shapeshifting Seducer: Tyr'Nar reads Brad's mind and assumes the form of Cindy Parker, an attractive older girl on whom he has a crush so that he can gain his trust and eat him.
  • Shock Collar: Tyr'Nar is wearing a security anklet which was placed on him when he was captured by a bounty hunter from his planet. It prevents him from leaving the confines of the bounty hunter's ship, giving him an electric shock if he gets too close to the exit. When the ship crashlands on Earth (having been sabotaged by Tyr'Nar), he enlists the help of Kevin Buchanan in his attempts to remove it. He is eventually able to do so using a hacksaw and a blowtorch belonging to Kevin's father Alex.
  • Super Strength: Tyr'Nar provides Kevin Buchanan with a neuromuscular enhancer (otherwise known as a strength patch) which significantly increases his strength. It is worn on the user's hand. After he finally stands up for himself after being once again bullied by the Jerk Jock Nelson Tyler, Kevin effortlessly throws him aside as if he were a pillow. Nelson hits his head against a wall and ends up in hospital with a concussion.
  • Telepathy: The shapeshifter Tyr'Nar has telepathic powers. This allows him to read Kevin Buchanan's mind and assume the form of the US Air Force captain on the box which one of Kevin's many model planes came in. He later poses as Cindy Parker after reading Brad's mind. After he kills Kevin's father Alex, his telepathy allows him to impersonate him full-time.
  • The Unfavorite: Kevin Buchanan feels like this since his father Alex spends considerably more time with his sports-orientated elder brother Josh than he does with him.
  • Voluntary Shapeshifting: Tyr'Nar is a member of a species of shapeshifters.
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