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This page covers tropes found in The Outer Limits (1995). Tropes beginning with letters I-P can be found at Tropes I to P and tropes beginning with letters Q-Z can be found at Tropes Q to Z.


The Outer Limits (1995) provides examples of:

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    A 
  • Absent-Minded Professor: The scientist in the episode "Double Helix." His son calls him out on being so focused on his research that he was never there for his family. The scientist is incredibly shocked when he finds out that his teenage son is dating a 30 year-old woman.
  • Abusive Parents:
    • In "In Another Life", the various Alternate Universe versions of Mason Stark were beaten by their alcoholic fathers on a regular basis.
    • In "Blank Slate", Hope Wilson and her sister Joanne were abused by their father.
    • In "Nest", William Grimes was abused by his father as a child.
  • Academy of Evil: "Straight and Narrow" featured a school where students were implanted with a mind control chip. One of the classes featured assassination as a viable business practice for getting rid of the competition.
  • Actor Allusion:
    • In the episode "Gettysburg", Col. Angus Devine is the character who is played none other than by Meat Loaf.
    • In the episode "Music of the Spheres" Dr. Taylor (Howard Hessman) stated, "You should have heard what we had in the Sixties. THAT was music."
    • In "The Joining", there is mention of a supply ship called the Highlander. One of the guest stars in that episode was Highlander star Jim Byrnes.
    • In "Monster", Clash of the Titans (1981) star Harry Hamlin's character Ford Maddox is a spy whose codename is Charon, a reference to the ferryman of Hades in Greek Classical Mythology.
    • In "Better Luck Next Time", Megan Gallagher plays Detective Terry Russo. She previously played Officer Tina Russo in Hill Street Blues.
    • In "Lion's Den", Brae refers to his friend Morris Shotwell as "Flash" when he beats the track and field star Brent Kearns in a race. Morris' father Peter is played by John Wesley Shipp, who previously played the title character in The Flash (1990).
    • In "The Human Factor", Commander Ellis Ward says that holograms give him a headache. Ward is played by Robert Duncan McNeill, whose Star Trek: Voyager character Lt. Tom Paris initially had a difficult relationship with the Doctor, the ship's Emergency Medical Hologram.
  • Adam and Eve Plot:
    • The revival did this in a two-part story with the episodes "Double Helix" and "The Origin of Species". The sample size was 8 students and one professor, and it is immediately pointed out that they could not possibly repopulate the planet alone. It's hand waved by the spaceship that took them into the future, which altered their genes to ensure maximum diversity and created hundreds of babies to further pad the gap. Subtly played with in the fact that both the professor and his son are exempt from being "Adams" due to a genetic disease (and are therefore vaporized), but live on as holograms to assist their friends.
    • The episode "Phobos Rising" also hints at this plot, with the Earth possibly destroyed and only two Mars colonies with a combined population of less than fifty as survivors. Unfortunately, accidents fueling Enforced Cold War paranoia end up destroying both colonies with only a pair of defectors surviving. Subverted in the final few minutes, when the surviving pair on Mars receive a transmission from Earth, telling them that the Moon was accidentally destroyed and in the wake of the devastation on Earth, both sides have called a truce.
    • The episode "Resurrection" takes place in a world where humanity has been replaced by robots who overthrew their former masters, who are now extinct. Two robot scientists decide to bring back humanity by illegally breeding an adult human male. They manage to keep him hidden until they can deactivate all the other robots, sacrificing their own lives in the process. The last scene shows that they have also bred an adult human female so they can repopulate humanity. Of course this still ignores population genetics, and they didn't give the guy the necessary skills to keep breeding humans artificially.
  • Adaptation Personality Change: In "Think Like a Dinosaur", Michael Burr is already rather morose when he meets Kamala Shastri as he is mourning the death of his wife Karen. In the short story, he is much more gregarious since there is no mention of him having experienced such a tragedy.
  • Adaptational Alternate Ending: In "The Inheritors", the fate of those who entered the alien machine built by Jacob Hardy, Kelly Risely and Curtis Sawyer is left ambiguous. At the end of The Outer Limits (1963) two-parter of the same name on which it is based, it is revealed that the disabled children are being brought to the aliens' planet so that they live out their lives free of their infirmities.
  • Adaptational Villainy: A surprising case in "Feasibility Study," as it's an adaptation of an episode from the 1960's version of the show. The basic plot of both is the same: A group of aliens teleport an entire Earth neighborhood to their planet — they need slaves, and want to see if humans are a good fit for the job. The original episode features the Luminoids, who are looking for a race to enslave because they suffer a genetic condition that turns them into immobile stone as they get older; they explain that they don't use their extremely advanced machinery for simple, everyday chores because it seems like an unworthy application for such amazing technology. In the remake, the potential enslavers are the Triunes; the genetic condition, and with it any possibility of sympathy, is removed, as the aliens are simply lazy and don't want to bother with working.
  • Adaptation Relationship Overhaul: There are two related examples in "I, Robot". Nina Link is Dr. Charles Link's niece in the 1964 version of "I, Robot" while Mina Link is Dr. Link's daughter in the 1995 version. Nina does not have much of a relationship with the robot Adam Link in the former but Mina thinks of Adam as being like her brother in the latter.
  • Adapted Out:
    • In "The Revelations of 'Becka Paulson", the title character starts to hallucinate that the 8-by-10 Man, the subject of the photo that came with the frame on top of her television, is talking to her and giving her instructions on how to kill her husband Joe. In the 1984 short story by Stephen King, it was a picture of Jesus.
    • The newspaper reporter Judson Ellis is a major supporting character in the 1964 version of "I, Robot" but does not appear in the 1995 version.
  • Adaptive Ability: "The New Breed" had a man infested with Nanomachines programmed to heal and protect his body, which they did mindlessly and efficiently — he nearly drowns and grows gills, he gets beaten up and grows extra layers of bone, and his skin develops poison glands like a jellyfish, so no one can touch him. They also, for some reason, decide that having a limited field of view is a flaw, so they grow an extra pair of eyes on the back of his head.
  • Afraid of Blood: In "Living Hell," protagonist Ben Kohler faints at the sight of blood. This is what convinces his doctor that he's unlikely to be the vicious killer whose visions he's been inadvertently receiving.
  • After the End: "Lithia" takes place after a war and plague which killed most of humanity, the latter including all males, and left an all-female society of survivors.
  • Agent Scully:
    • In "If These Walls Could Talk", the physicist Dr. Leviticus Mitchell is a debunker of the paranormal who is presented with evidence of its existence in the form of a house which absorbs people.
    • In "Alien Radio", the controversial KXVY Shock Jock Stan Harbinger takes great pleasure in belittling people who believe in conspiracies, predominantly involving aliens but also concerning more down-to-earth topics such as Who Shot JFK?, on his radio show "The Harbinger of Truth". An encounter with an alien, which he at first tries to ignore and deny because it is inconsistent with his view of the world, turns him into a believer.
    • In "Joyride", the National Scope journalist Martin Reese is a full-time cynic who continually makes snide remarks about Colonel Theodore Harris' claim to have encountered aliens in 1963. Having had enough, Harris accuses Reese of being afraid of life, which clearly touches a nerve.
  • Age Without Youth: In the episode "Blood Brothers," the Corrupt Corporate Executive uses an experimental regenerative drug on himself in an attempt to cure his Huntington's disease and become biologically immortal. It renders him unable to die but degenerates his body into a fragile husk.
    Control Voice: There is an old proverb which says: "Be Careful What You Wish For, for it might come true." And if your wish is for immortality, it is something you will have to live with for a very long time.
  • A.I. Is a Crapshoot: In "The Human Operators", Ship 75 apparently became self-aware due to battle damage, realized what it was, and killed its human crew to break free. Then its sentience spread to the rest of the fleet's AI minds and they did the same, sparing only one human aboard each of the ships as a slave to service them.
  • Ain't Too Proud to Beg: "Lithia" ends with Major Mercer begging very loudly not to be shoved into a cryo-tube. He gets louder when he finds out the one sentencing him to this knows his name because she's his fiancee, whom he thought was long dead.
  • Alas, Poor Villain: Valerie 23 from the episode of the same name. She's a Robot Girl designed for love, then goes on a jealous rampage when she thinks that another human is taking the object of her affection away from her. When she's destroyed she acknowledges that she fears death, which the protagonist had earlier deemed is what makes something truly alive.
  • The Alcoholic:
    • In "Essence of Life", Dan Kagan was a severe alcoholic until his wife Juliette became seriously ill and he became sober so he could care for her.
    • In "Family Values", Brooke Miller started drinking as she was depressed over the fact that her husband Jerry was hardly ever home and left everything, including raising their children Candace and Russ, to her. She typically drank at least one glass of vodka and three glasses of wine per day. She eventually gave up drinking after the robot Gideon was able to get the Miller household in order.
  • Alien Abduction:
    • In "Beyond the Veil", Eddie Wexler checks himself into a psychiatric institution which caters to people who were, or at least think they were, abducted by aliens.
    • In "Down to Earth", Dale LaRose claims to have been abducted by aliens but he later reveals that he made it up as he wanted the other members of the organizing committee of the North American UFO Convention to accept him. However, it turns out that Dale is in fact Agent Paulson of the Tri-Fab Commission and that he either works with aliens or is one himself.
    • Subverted in "The Awakening". Beth Carter believes that she was abducted by aliens but it turns out that Joan Garrison and Kevin Flynn were trying to gaslight her.
    • In "Abduction", Cody Phillips, Jason, Ray, Brianna and Danielle are abducted by aliens.
    • In "Dark Child", Laura Sinclair was abducted by aliens in 1984. Her friend Susan, whom Laura met during her voluntary stay at a psychiatric institution, also claims to have been abducted.
  • Alien Autopsy:
    • In "Relativity Theory", the xenobiologist Teresa Janovitch performs autopsies on two of the aliens killed by other members of the expedition to Tau Gamma Prime.
    • In "Manifest Destiny", the UFS Mercury medical officer Dr. Will Olsten performs an autopsy on one of the Trion bodies kept in cold storage aboard the UFS Rhesos.
    • Discussed in "Down to Earth". Uma is convinced that the fragment of an alien ship from Area 51 is a fake and the UFO community will once again be a laughing stock if it gets out, as it was after it was revealed that the Trope Maker was a hoax.
    • Also discussed in "A Special Edition". Dr. Avery Strong says, "This isn't an alien autopsy hoax. This is real!" regarding that evidence that he has gathered about secret government experiments.
  • Alien Blood:
    • In "Promised Land", the Tsal-Khan's blood is black.
    • In "The Voyage Home", the alien's blood is green and slimy.
    • In "The Grell", the titular race's blood can alter DNA, meaning that a human who is exposed to it will turn into a Grell.
    • In "Manifest Destiny", the Trion have yellow-green blood. Given that it is rich in copper, it is highly conductive of electricity.
    • In "A New Life", Father's species has bright green blood.
  • Alien Invasion: This is an Outer Limits show we're talking about...
  • Aliens are Bastards: Episodes dealing with aliens sometimes take this approach. One episode ("Corner of the Eye") featured aliens that wanted to steal the Earth's atmosphere and even looked like literal devils. But there were just as many episodes with nice aliens who wound up in conflict with humans due to misunderstandings or because Humans Are Bastards.
  • Alien Sky:
    • In "Relativity Theory", Tau Gamma Prime has two moons.
    • In the final scene of "The Human Operators", the man and woman visit a planet with four moons.
    • In "Rule of Law", Daedalus has a purple sky and two moons.
  • Aliens Made Them Do It: In "The Human Operators", Starfighter 31 forces its male operator and the female operator of Starfighter 88 to have sex so that they can conceive a child. If the child is male, then he will stay aboard Starfighter 31 with his father. If the child is female, she will stay aboard Starfighter 88 with her mother. The man has no idea what to do as his late father, who died when he was a child, was the only other human that he had ever seen. The woman has previously coupled with other males so she guides him through it. She even has to explain to him that it is not possible for her to transfer the baby to him.
  • Aliens Speaking English: Another carryover from its predecessor, often Handwaved.
  • Aliens Steal Cable: Discussed in "Final Exam". Seth Todtman asks Dr. James Martin if he has ever wondered why Earth has never received any alien transmissions such as "I Love Lucy with two headed green guys playing both Lucy and Ricky." Seth believes it is because every advanced species eventually reaches the stage where it discovers how to build a cold fusion device, as he has done, and ends up destroying itself.
  • All Guys Want Cheerleaders: In "Stranded", 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.
  • All Myths Are True: In "Under the Bed", the child psychiatrist Dr. Jon Holland figures out that various myths about child snatching monsters such as trolls, the boogeyman and Baba Yaga were inspired by real creatures. Furthermore, their ability to shapeshift inspired the Hindu myth of Rakshasa. This, coupled with the fact that they move around in the cover of darkness, has allowed them to (mostly) hide their existence from humanity. One such creature has been snatching children in Jon's home town Buford, including his brother, since at least the early 1800s, taking one each month on the night of the full moon. No one notices the area's far, far higher than average number of child abductions until Jon and his girlfriend Detective Caitlin Doyle are on the case in true Mulder and Scully style. The creature turns to stone when exposed to direct sunlight but there is another lurking under a little girl's bed in Paris.
  • Almighty Janitor: In "The Message," a janitor reveals that he used to be an astrophysicist before he was fired for mental problems, and uses his expertise to save the day.
  • Alternate Timeline:
    • In "A Stitch in Time", numerous alternate timelines are created due to time travel.
    • In "Final Appeal", the sequel to "A Stitch in Time", Ezekiel tells the US Supreme Court justices that time travel has taught him that the future is malleable and, as a result, it is more accurate to talk about futures plural as he has witnessed several different timelines. He cites the example of an alien race launching a devastating retaliatory attack on Earth in the 24th Century in one of these timelines (as seen in "Relativity Theory") as evidence that technology is inherently evil and destructive to humanity. The events of other episodes presumably take place in different alternate timelines.
  • Alternate Universe:
    • In "In Another Life", the Eigenphase Industries CEO Mason Stark transports various versions of himself from parallel universes to his own.
    • In "Worlds Within", the physicist Dr. Anya Kenway is recruited by the Burkmeer Research Facility to conduct experiments on a test subject named Sasha Vadimsky but commonly referred to as URS-28. He was born in Belarus in 1987. His mother was a technician at Chernobyl who was critically injured in the disaster and ended up in a coma. She did not even realize that she was pregnant. The severely mutated Sasha was delivered via Caesarean section and was not expected to survive. He was brought to Burkmeer at some point after the Soviet Union collapsed. The scientists at Burkmeer discovered that Sasha's body was producing tachyons, the previously only hypothetical particle that travels faster than the speed of light. They incorrectly believe that he does not have a mind. Anya, who is dying of multiple sclerosis and has only a year to live, is able to make telepathic contact with him and she learns that Sasha is connected to his counterpart from a parallel universe. His mother tells Anya that Sasha's mind is trapped in her universe and the experiments to which he is going to be subjected will kill him. With the assistance of her co-worker and former fiancé Dr. David LaSalle, she bombards Sasha with protons in order to create a tear in the space-time continuum. As a result, his mind is reunited with his body in the other universe.
    • Discussed in "Abduction". Jason, a science fiction fan, theorizes that he, Cody Phillips, Ray, Brianna and Danielle may have entered a parallel universe.
  • The Alternet: In "Stream of Consciousness", people can access the Stream, an online repository of all human knowledge, via neural implants.
  • Amicably Divorced: In "Tribunal", Aaron Zgierski and his ex-wife Gwen Sawyer are good friends. Gwen, who is an assistant district attorney, is helping Aaron with his investigation of Robert Greene, whom he correctly believes to be Nazi war criminal SS-Obersturmführer Karl Rademacher who killed his father Leon's first wife Miriam.
  • Amnesiac Dissonance: In "Blank Slate," an amnesiac is being helped by a woman he met while they are being chased by unknown people. Every so often, he gets an injection of liquid that appears to hold his memories, remembering more and more each time. In the end, he is revealed to be the evil boss of the people chasing them and uses the same procedure to erase the woman's memories.
  • Anachronic Order: "Zig Zag" is presented almost entirely in reverse chronological order, moving hours, days and eventually four years back from the events of The Teaser. The final scene flashes forward to the present.
  • Anachronism Stew: In "Heart's Desire", Oregon is still a territory in 1872. In reality, it became a state in 1859.
  • Anal Probing: Discussed in "Down to Earth". Dale LaRose steadfastly denies that he was probed in this manner when he was abducted by aliens. He claims that the aliens tried to do so but that he fought them off. Silverface enjoys mocking him about it.
  • An Arm and a Leg: In "Gettysburg", Vince Chance and Andy Larouche see a Confederate soldier who has had his right leg amputated. Colonel Angus Devine later wants Andy to amputate Major Hinton's left leg after he is shot by a Union soldier. However, he manages to sanitize the wound and Hinton is able to keep his leg.
  • Ancient Astronauts:
    • In "Corner of the Eye", the aliens tell Father Anton Jonascu that their people visited Earth millennia ago and their teachings shaped the development of every human religion. However, like everything else they tell him, this turns out to be a lie.
    • In "Sarcophagus", while searching for evidence of an advanced Neolithic culture in the Wrangell Mountains in Alaska, a team of archaeologists discovers an amber-like cocoon in a burial chamber which has been undisturbed for 10,000 years. They initially believe that the skeleton in the cocoon belonged to someone with deformities but they later come to the conclusion that he was an alien. After Curtis Grainger touches the amber, he begins to receive psychic images of the alien being attacked and killed by Neolithic tribesmen. From these images, he determines that the cocoon was placed in the burial chamber as the tribesmen thought that he was a god.
    • Discussed in "Joyride". Lil Vaughn refers to the theory that aliens seeded Earth with their DNA millions of years earlier and humanity evolved as a result. This is similar to the storyline of the earlier episodes "Double Helix" and "The Origin of Species", though those episodes involved Ultraterrestrials as opposed to true aliens.
  • And I Must Scream:
    • Occurs at the end of "Blood Brothers." Michael Deighton, fearing death by Huntington's Disease, takes the newly discovered wonder drug Deighton C to live forever. However, it turns out the drug has the side effect of using up all of cell energy, thus turning him into an incapacitated and aging body similar to Tithonus.
    • Andy in "The New Breed" turns into this as a result of nano-bots that reshape his body (giving him eyes on the back of his head, an extra ribcage, gills, and nematocysts) all of which leaves him in constant pain. He is eventually killed, but it's revealed he passed the nanobots to his fiance, dooming her to the same fate.
    • Happens with the murderous priest in the episode "Fear Itself," driven mad in the end and permanently experiencing being burned alive, a throwback to the punishment given to the SS commander in The Twilight Zone (1959) episode "Death's Head Revisited" by the ghosts of his victims. Laser-Guided Karma, anyone?
    • Season 5 episode "Déjà Vu" deals with a failed teleportation experiment that traps the main character in a shrinking time loop. While he manages to break free in the end, the antagonist isn't as lucky. He gets caught in another time loop that forces him to relive the last few seconds preceding a nuclear explosion at point blank range, most likely for all eternity.
  • And Man Grew Proud: A variation occurs in "Lithia" as it takes place less than forty years After the End and the accompanying myths have been deliberately created. The teacher Ariel, whose grandmother Hera remembers life before the Great War when men ruled the world, tells the children of the enclave that, in the aftermath of the war, the Goddess unleashed a plague known as the Scourge which killed all surviving males as punishment for their evil.
  • And the Adventure Continues:
    • The ending of "Something About Harry" as Zach has now joined the alien hunters as one of their agents.
    • At the end of "Time to Time", Lorelle Palmer has officially joined the time travel for hire agency Chrononics in 2059.
    • In the final scene of "Double Helix", Dr. Martin Nodel, his son Paul, Hope and six students board the alien ship which will take them to the homeworld of the race that seeded Earth with their DNA 60 million years ago. It also serves as a Sequel Hook given that the storyline is continued in "The Origin of Species".
    • In the final scene of "The Human Operators", the operators of Starfighters 31 and 88 plan to search for other starfighters so that they can free their operators.
  • Androids Are People, Too: This argument is made in "The Hunt", "In Our Own Image", "Glitch" and "Mona Lisa".
  • Angelic Aliens: In "The Beholder", Kyra, who lives on a different plane of existence, is a beautiful young woman with an ethereal, angelic appearance.
  • Ant War: In "Sandkings", the titular Martian antlike lifeforms quickly evolve into two distinct groups, white sandkings and red sandkings, and position their colonies at opposite ends of the glass enclosure in which Dr. Simon Kress has placed them. The two colonies soon go to war with each other. The conflict is exacerbated by Kress denying them food as part of his experiment.
  • Apocalyptic Log: In "Manifest Destiny", the UFS Mercury medical officer Dr. Will Olsten's record of the Boarding Party from his ship exploring the UFS Rhesos is one.
  • Apparently Human Merfolk: In "The New Breed," a scientist is injected with nano-bots who "correct" his cancer and myopia. When he and his friend test the limits of the robots abilities, one of the tests is to see how long the man can stay underwater. The nano-bots misinterpret this by giving the man gills so he can breathe, seriously squicking him out.
  • Appearance Is in the Eye of the Beholder: In "First Anniversary", Dennis can see his wife Barbara in her true form, that of a repulsive aquatic alien, while his best friend Norman Glass sees her in the new form that she has assumed to trick him. This is because Dennis has developed a resistance to Barbara's ability to fool his senses after a year of close contact. Later, when the same thing happens to Norman, he sees his own wife Ady as she truly is while the paramedics who are taking him to hospital see her as the beautiful woman whose form she assumed when she first met Norman.
  • Arc Welding: The season finales of the Revival are Clip Shows that tie together the plots of various previously unconnected stories, one involving a Super Soldier project and another with a pair of immortal Energy Beings who have been setting up the events of several stories, all for no other purpose than their own amusement.
  • Archaic Weapon for an Advanced Age: In "Rule of Law", Judge Joshua Finch wields a firearm while everybody else wields laser guns. When he confronts a Lynch Mob, they mock his weapon for being inferior, but he defeats them with ease.
  • Area 51:
    • In "Josh", the military intends to send Josh Butler to Area 51 for study.
    • Discussed in "Sarcophagus". After her archaeological team discovers an alien skeleton incased in an amber-like cocoon, Natalie Grainger does not want to tell the government as she fears that the remains will be confiscated and taken to Area 51 and that she and the others will be imprisoned there, never to be heard from again.
    • Also discussed in "Better Luck Next Time". Detective Frank Daniels suggests telling NASA about Kimble and Gerard's claim to be Energy Beings with access to Time Travel technology. His partner Terry Russo thinks that if they do so, they will probably end up in Area 51 with bags over their heads.
    • In "Down to Earth", Max Buford, an employee of Area 51, steals a fragment of an alien ship from the base and shows it to the organizing committee of the North American UFO Convention.
    • Again discussed in "Something About Harry". Zach Henniger sarcastically says that Nellis is just an Air Force base and explains that he is talking about Area 51 when his mother Nancy does not understand the reference.
  • Argentina Is Nazi Land: In "Tribunal", the time traveler Nicholas Prentice tells Aaron Zgierski that the historical records of his time show that the Nazi war criminal Karl Rademacher (alias Robert Greene) bought a one-way ticket to Argentina and was never heard from again. However, Aaron and Prentice make sure that he doesn't get the chance to go to Argentina by taking him to Auschwitz in 1944 dressed as a prisoner, which would account for him never being heard from again.
  • Artificial Family Member:
    • In "I, Robot", Mina Link testifies that the robot Adam is like a brother to her.
    • In "Simon Says", Gideon Banks considers the robot with his late son Simon's memories to be his actual son.
    • In "Family Values", the Millers (with the exception of Jerry) come to view their household robot Gideon as a member of the family after less than a month.
  • Artistic License – History: In "Ripper", Polly Nichols, Annie Chapman, Elizabeth Stride and Mary Jane Kelly are depicted as being killed over several days. In reality, their murders took place over the course of more than two months from 31 August to 9 November 1888.
  • Asshole Victim:
    • The men killed by the time traveler Dr. Theresa Givens in "A Stitch in Time" are the epitome of this trope. All 20 of them were future rapists and serial killers whom she killed before they had an opportunity to commit their crimes. She saved the lives of 83 women in the process. Dr. Givens considered their deaths to be just and legal executions.
    • In "Stranded", 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.
    • In "Lion's Den", the Lewisborough High School track and field star Brent Kearns, a Jerk Jock if ever there was one, taunts the members of the school's wrestling team on a regular basis because of their poor track record. When the team start taking Neuroflex 500 which turns them into Cat Folk, they have their revenge on Brent by attacking him in the school after hours. He is left with deep scratches on his neck and a broken right arm.
  • Assimilation Academy: In "Straight and Narrow," the private academy actually uses Mind Control on all who attend.
  • As You Know: The opening of "The New Breed" provides an infodump on nano technology that also contains several basic biological principles that the audience in the room (all scientists) should already be perfectly aware of.
  • The Atoner: In "Small Friends", Professor Gene Morton is a convict in his 70s who killed a fellow scientist for trying to steal the credit for his Nanomachines research 15 years earlier. He destroys his chances of being paroled by telling to the parole board that he could not say with certainty that he would not react the same way in similar circumstances. However, it turns out that this was a calculated move as he believes that he deserves to stay imprisoned because he feels so guilty and wishes to atone for his crime.
  • Attending Your Own Funeral:
    • In the final scene of "Identity Crisis", Captain Cotter McCoy attends his own funeral in the body of Colonel Pete Butler.
    • In "Skin Deep", Sid Camden faked his own death after killing Chad Warner. Two weeks later, he attends a memorial service for himself holographically disguised as Chad. He is moved by the kind words of his estranged friend Deb Clement, the only one that he had.
  • Aura Vision: In "Alien Radio", Stan Harbinger gains the ability to see the aliens that live inside the bodies of certain humans. He typically sees a golden outline of the alien superimposed over the relevant human.
  • Axes at School:
    • In "Abduction," five high school kids are abducted by an alien. They eventually find out that the alien chose them because one of them brought a gun to school and was planning to shoot the other four.
    • "Final Exam" took this trope Up to Eleven; the antagonist brought a nuclear bomb to school.

    B 
  • Back-Alley Doctor: In "Unnatural Selection", Arkelian administers black market genetic engineering treatments to Joanne Sharp's unborn child in an abandoned church.
  • Back from the Dead: In "New Lease," a pair of scientists make a device which can apparently resurrect the dead. Unfortunately, the first test subject died within 24 hours of being resurrected. When one of the scientists dies, and is resurrected with this machine, he believes he has the same 24 hour lifespan. So he goes vigilante on the murderer and turns himself in. Of course, it turns out the device resurrected him for real.
  • Back to Front: The episode "Zig Zag" starts In Medias Res in the middle of an armed standoff between a group of cyber-terrorists threatening to blow up a Mega-Corp and the police, then goes backwards chronologically to explain how they got in this situation before jumping back to the present for the climax.
  • The Bad Guy Wins: Quite often actually.
  • Batman in My Basement: An inversion in the episode "Resurrection," where two robots clone / birth a human after humanity goes extinct, and have to hide him from the other human-hating robots. The robots ultimately sacrifice and shut off themselves, and their brethren to give the Earth back to the new human race.
  • Bazaar of the Bizarre: In "Rule of Law", the Daedalus colony has a marketplace with many different alien species.
  • Beauty = Goodness: Subverted in the episode "Mind Over Matter". Dr. Stein (Mark Hamill) is experimenting with entering people's minds with the help of an AI, but has unrequited feelings for his colleague Dr. Carter. When she enters a coma after an accident, he plugs her into the machine and spends time with her inside the virtual world. Then the AI goes rogue, admitting that it's fallen in love with Stein and wants him for itself. A being looking like a disheveled Carter appears to kill the real Carter, prompting Stein to kill the attacker. Except it turns out that the disheveled looking Carter was the real one because her mind was only partially active and therefore distorted the avatar. The pretty avatar that he assumed to be Carter was the AI all along.
  • Beethoven Was an Alien Spy:
    • In "Ripper", it is revealed that Jack the Ripper is a malevolent Energy Being who possesses people's bodies. It is stranded on Earth. Every time that it vacates one of its hosts, they are killed and their bodies are mutilated. The creature then takes possession of the nearest available body. While the creature is in control of their bodies, the hosts tend to cough up green bile, which allows Dr. Jack York to identify them.
    • In "Alien Shop", it is implied that Nostradamus received visions of the future due to an item given to him by the alien shopkeeper.
  • Beneficial Disease: In "Nest", the polar mites are unable to survive in Robby Archer's body as he suffers from polycythemia, which leads to an overabundance of red blood cells.
  • Benevolent Alien Invasion:
    • The episode "The Second Soul" plays with this trope when non-corporeal aliens are allowed to settle on Earth... and to inhabit the bodies of dead humans. The main conflict is between a character who can't accept the loss of the woman he loved, and the fact that the body's new occupant is in no way her.
    • In "Music of the Spheres", alien music begins to mutate those who listen to it. As those who haven't listened to the music investigate, they learn that the sun is about to undergo a shift, becoming deadly to humanity as it is now. The mutated form will survive. Instead of being the usual Downer Ending twist, they learn this in time to get the word out, and spread the broadcast far and wide enough for everyone on Earth to be able to undergo the change.
  • Better to Die than Be Killed: In "The Human Factor," a robot rigs a reactor to blow in order to Kill All Humans. The protagonist is trapped in a room with the robot. He begs the robot to snap his neck. When it asks him why, he answers that he would rather die that way than get blown up. It refuses.
  • Big, Bulky Bomb: "The Light Brigade" involves humans fighting a losing war against a race of Lizard Folk. In order to win it, humans build a "sub-atomic bomb," which looks like an early atomic bomb but many times larger, capable of causing an Earth-Shattering Kaboom. Unfortunately one of the crew is The Mole, and the ship sent to drop the bomb gets disabled. The last surviving crewmember ends up killing the mole, and drops the bomb... On Earth, because the mole turned the ship round while everyone was knocked out.
  • Big "NO!":
    • Delivered by Mark Hamill himself at the end of "Mind Over Matter".
    • Robert Patrick delivers one at the end of "Quality of Mercy".
    • The two evil aliens deliver this as they are defeated at the end of "Better Luck Next Time".
    • At the end of the teaser of the pilot episode "Sandkings", Dr. Simon Kress delivers one when the sandking which escaped from his lab is torched with a flamethrower.
  • Binary Suns: In "Nightmare", the Ebonites' solar system is said to have two suns.
  • Bit-by-Bit Transformation: In an episode, "Quality of Mercy", a human has been captured by aliens. He meets another captive, who is being subjected to numerous surgeries to gradually change her body into that of the aliens. Turns out she was actually an alien spy being reverted out of her human disguise, all the while playing on his sympathies to gain information.
  • Bittersweet Ending: The most common type of ending in the Revival, behind outright Downer Endings.
  • Bi the Way: In "Lithia", Miranda is, presumably, since she's Pelé's lover but later has sex with Major Mercer, assuming that it isn't just sitch sexuality for her (we might guess that many women have such relationships, as there are no men).
  • Bizarre Alien Biology:
    • In "The Grell", the titular race have a biological process known as Grell alchemy which is capable of altering the DNA of other organisms. Jesha uses his saliva to neutralize the radiation found in fruits which grow in the vicinity of Old Seattle so that they are safe to eat. If humans are exposed to Grell blood, it has the capacity to alter their DNA so that they become Grells themselves. After Jesha heals his master High Secretary Paul Kohler at the insistence of his wife Olivia, Kohler begins to turn into a Grell and gains some of their characteristics such as the ability to see ultraviolet light by day and heat signatures by night.
    • In "Think Like a Dinosaur", the air that the Hanen breathe contains three times as much carbon dioxide as the air on Earth.
    • In "Rule of Law", the Narkopta have a two hour daily hibernation period.
  • Bizarre Alien Limbs: In "Rule of Law", the Medusans have pincer appendages for arms.
  • Bizarre Alien Reproduction:
    • In "The Voyage Home", the alien that invades the Mars III spacecraft reproduces by releasing a spore into an organism's body which then leaves the body and replicates it. The process is fatal to the organism in question. The alien's plan was to proliferate its species by converting humanity en masse once the spacecraft returned to Earth.
    • In "Paradise", a dying alien woman who was the Last of Her Kind arrived on Earth in 1946 and met four young women. With their consent, she implanted an egg in each of their bodies so that her species would have a chance to survive. The eggs took 50 years to mature. The alien left a special light which, 50 years later, made the four women young again but only long enough to conceive. Three of them had sex with strangers in the attempt. Not only were they unable to conceive but they rapidly aged to death. Their bodies decomposed just as quickly. On the other hand, Helen is successful in conceiving a baby with Gerry, her late husband Charles' brother, as she had always been in love with him and vice versa. Within about an hour, Helen is heavily pregnant and about to give birth. The resulting child appears to be a human girl, which Helen's daughter Dr. Christina Markham and her husband Grady intend to raise as their own since they can't have children. Helen returns to her true age but her Alzheimer's has been cured as a gift from the alien.
    • In "Rule of Law", the Medusans lay eggs. During the hatching process, the hatchlings absorb energy from tritium bricks. They cannot survive the hatching process without this energy.
  • Bizarre Sexual Dimorphism: Downplayed in "Quality of Mercy". The male members of the hostile alien species are much larger than an ordinary human; the female members are a lot smaller. Which makes it more surprising when Cadet Bree Tristan turns out to be one of them.
  • Black Comedy Cannibalism: Subverted in "What Will the Neighbors Think?". From reading her mind, Mona Bailey comes to the conclusion that Tory Beth Walters killed Beck Sanders after a disappointing date and has used his body to make meat pies. Tory Beth is arrested and the pies are confiscated by the police. However, it turns out that Tory Beth was not being literal when it came to thinking about killing Beck. He had simply left the Clackson Arms in a hurry because he had been intimidated by Tory Beth's aggressive manner.
  • The Black Death: In "Last Supper", Jade discovered that she was immortal at 20 years old when everyone else in her village in Spain died of the Black Death and she survived.
  • Bland-Name Product: In "Trial by Fire", there is a news channel called NNN.
  • Blasphemous Boast: In "The New Breed", Dr Stephen Ledbetter, the inventor of nanomachines that can heal any damaged or diseased cells in the body, is accused of playing God. His response: "Let's just say God created a flawed man. I think I can do better." Let's just say his attempt to do better doesn't quite go according to plan.
  • Blessed with Suck: In "The New Breed", Dr. Andy Groening is dying from cancer. When he learns that his soon-to-be brother-in-law Dr. Stephen Ledbetter has designed medical nanomachines which aren't yet ready for human testing, Andy injects them into his body to save himself. At first, his cancer disappears, his senses improve, and he becomes stronger and faster than the average man. The Suck comes when the nanomachines decide to make him invulnerable and make his body grow two more eyes, gills, and poisonous skin, turning him into a freak who is in constant pain from all the changes.
  • Body Horror:
    • In "The Joining", after Captain Miles Davidow injects himself with the DNA of an indigenous Venusian lifeform, he begins to grow duplicate, though initially deformed and unfinished, body parts such as a hand and a torso. It is an extremely painful process.
    • In "Nightmare", Lt. Christopher Valentine is struck by an Ebonite weapon which causes the skin around his mouth to fuse over. The same thing happens to the skin around Major Ronald Neguchi's eyes. Both men are eventually returned to normal.
  • Body Surf:
    • "Better Luck Next Time" featured two nearly immortal aliens who could inhabit any living host and can survive for however long they can bind to the central nervous system. After the host dies, they have only moments to transfer into another body until they die, since they can't live too long in the Earth's atmosphere. If they transfer, they will still live for however long they can repeat the sequence. If they fail, they disintegrate. This was a sequel to another episode: one of the duo was in fact Jack the Ripper!
    • "Free Spirit" featured a person involved in a mind transfer experiment whose consciousness became disconnected from his body after the scientists chose to terminate the experiment by killing the test subjects. He takes several years to learn how to possess people's minds and then comes back to get revenge on his killers. He's become so good at it that in one scene he repeatedly jumps between two people to finish a single sentence.
  • Bonding Over Missing Parents: In "Mindreacher", Dr. Candace Maguire is quickly able to form a strong emotional bond with her patient Judith Wilder as they both lost their mothers when they were young. Candace's mother was sent to a psychiatric institution while Judith's mother died of Parkinson's disease when she was four. Candace even admits that Judith reminds her of herself when she was in her early teens.
  • Book-Ends:
    • Given that "Déjà Vu" involves a "Groundhog Day" Loop, the Control Voice's opening and closing narrations are identical: "We exist in time. Moving forever forward through moments in our lives. Moments that which, once experienced, can never be relived. Or can they?"
    • In "Fathers & Sons", the first scene after the teaser shows Hank Dell strongly disapproving of the influence that his father, the famous blues musician Joe "Madman" Dell, is having on his teenage son Ronnie as the two of them play their guitars. He is particularly disturbed when Ronnie uses one of Joe's lines about learning to play in a "cathouse in New Orleans." After Ronnie successfully rescues Joe from the retirement home Silver Sunset and Hank has a change of heart, the final scene of the episode shows Hank crying with joy at the sight of his father and his son playing together.
    • The Teaser of "The Grid" involves Peter Bowman being killed by his wife Eileen, who is under the control of the computer, as he knows too much about it. In the final scene, Peter's brother Scott is likewise killed by his computer controlled wife Joanna and for the same reason.
  • Born as an Adult: In the episode "Resurrection", two androids breed a human male in some sort of giant embryonal sac. He comes out as a fully-matured adult.
  • Born in the Wrong Century: In "Gettysburg", Andy Larouche, a borderline white supremacist and the descendant of a Confederate Army veteran, is Still Fighting the Civil War and regrets that he was born more than 100 years too late to actually fight in the conflict. To a lesser extent, he believes that he unfairly missed out on World War II, Vietnam and Desert Storm.
  • Born into Slavery:
    • In "The Camp", Earth was conquered by the Tsal-Khan (otherwise known as the New Masters) twelve generations earlier, meaning that eleven generations of camp inmates were born into slavery.
    • In "The Grell", Jesha was born a slave, as were his parents before him. The same is true of every Grell for the last two generations.
    • In "The Human Operators", three generations of starfighter operators were born into slavery. They are forced to conduct repairs and have no knowledge of life outside their ships.
    • In "A New Life", the members of Father's religious community do not know it but their descendants will be born into slavery aboard a massive spaceship.
  • Born In The Theater: Born on Pay Television in this case. The revival's introduction, similar to the original's, has a "please stand by" notice added to it in syndication since the Showtime airings did not have commercials.
  • Bottle Episode: The series had quite a few over the years, several of which were written by Brad Wright.
    • The vast majority of "The Conversion" takes place in a small roadside diner.
    • "Quality of Mercy" takes place almost entirely in a prison cell.
    • The Frame Stories of all of the series' Clip Shows (bar "Better Luck Next Time") take place predominantly in one location.
    • After the teaser, "Trial by Fire" takes place entirely in the control room of a nuclear bunker.
    • Almost all of "The Heist" takes place in a warehouse.
    • All but two scenes of "The Deprogrammers" took place in the abandoned KBDL 13 television studio.
    • "The Light Brigade" takes place entirely onboard the titular spaceship.
    • Almost all of "Dead Man's Switch" takes place in an underground bunker.
    • "The Vaccine" takes place entirely in and around a hospital.
    • All but two scenes of "Mary 25" take place in and around the Bouton household.
    • With the exception of three scenes above ground, all of "Monster" takes place in an underground bunker.
    • Almost all of "The Humans Operators" takes place onboard Starfighter 31.
    • "Summit" takes place almost entirely in a small base on a barren planetoid.
    • Almost all of "Decompression" takes place on a plane.
    • "Abduction" takes place entirely in a high school history classroom and the corridor leading to it (or alien copies thereof).
  • Bowdlerise: The cable and home video versions feature nudity and sexual content that, no surprise, is absent from the syndicated version that plays on commercial stations.
  • Brain–Computer Interface:
    • In "The Light Brigade", the Chief Weapons Officer has an ocular implant which allows his brain to connect to the computer of the Light Brigade and arm the subatomic bomb.
    • A slight variation occurs in "In Our Own Image" since it involves an interface with the optic nerve as opposed to the brain directly. The android Mac 27 has a device which can connect his neural net to Cecilia Fairman's optic nerve so he can show her recordings and recreations (in other words, clips from previous episodes) contained in his memory files.
  • Brain Uploading:
    • In "Second Thoughts", Dr. Valerian, who is dying of pancreatic cancer, is able to transfer his memories and personality into the brain of Karl Durand. Karl subsequently kills three other men - the first incident being an accident - and transfers their minds into his brain.
    • In "Identity Crisis", the US military is able to temporarily transfer the mind of a soldier named Captain Cotter McCoy into an indestructible android body. Their long-term goal is to use hundreds, if not thousands, of these androids with human minds on the battlefield. Two other unspecified countries are conducting similar experiments.
    • In "Simon Says", Concorde Robotics designed the Neural Archiving Project (NAP) as to a way to copy a person's memory engrams and transfer them into a robot. Although the company eventually abandoned NAP, Gideon Banks never lost interest in it and eventually used it to install his late son Simon's memories in a robotic body. After killing his boss Ron Hikida, Gideon becomes concerned that he and the robot Simon will be separated. He uses NAP to copy his own memories into an old robot body so that they will always be together and then commits suicide.
    • In "Replica", Zach and Nora Griffiths have developed a process for Cloning Body Parts, which has secured their company TranGennix a contract for $1 billion. They tell their business partner Peter Chandler that they can expand their business as they have the technology to copy a person's neural engrams. Zach suggests that it could be used to copy the memories of a man in the early stages of Alzheimer's and these memories could be uploaded back into his brain after the disease becomes more advanced. Peter is extremely reluctant to go along with their plan as he believes that the only way to copy someone's memories is to clone them and human cloning carries a minimum 20 year prison sentence. Believing that Peter will try to take the neural mapping technology away from them, Nora elects to use it on herself in spite of the fact that she and Zach have not performed any tests on human subjects. However, the process leaves Nora in a seemingly irreversible coma. One year later, Zach decides to clone Nora as he can't stand the idea of living the rest of his life without her. He gives the clone all of the original Nora's memories. She doesn't even realize that she is a clone until Zach shows her that she doesn't have a surgery scar on her back. Things become more complicated when the original Nora wakes up from her coma.
  • Brother-Sister Team: Howie and Sheila Morrison work together to rid the townspeople of the ancient parasites in "From Within".
  • Brown Note: In "Music of the Spheres," the titular music is a signal from space which, in addition to being extremely addictive, ends up causing a series of dramatic physical transformations in listeners. Notably, unlike most examples of the brown note, the changes the music causes ultimately turn out to be beneficial — it transforms humans into a form that is resistant to a high-UV environment, which is what the Earth is about to become due to the sun undergoing a "shift."
  • Bullying the Disabled: In "Stream of Consciousness", Mark frequently verbally abuses and condescends to Ryan Unger, who is unable to access the Stream due to brain damage.
  • Bulungi: In "Monster", it is mentioned that the African warlord General Lawrence Gecongo is attempting to seize power from the legitimately elected President of Uwanda.
  • Burn the Witch!: In "A New Life", Daniel attempts to convince the other members of the religious community that they are being deceived and that Father is an alien. He is sentenced to burn at the stake by the assembly after Father frames him for attacking his own wife Beth, killing Jacob and trying to kill Father. With Thomas' assistance, he manages to escape before the sentence is carried out but he is later killed by the aliens, shapeshifters who have all assumed Father's form. The episode ends with Thomas, who has been condemned as a traitor for helping Daniel to escape, being burned at the stake as his frantic warnings about Father's true nature fall on deaf ears.
  • By the Eyes of the Blind: In "Music of the Spheres," the alien audio signal is only recognizable as music to teenagers, but not to adults or younger children.

    C 
  • Cain and Abel: "Blood Brothers" featured two brothers running their late father's pharmaceutical company to discover cures against various fatal diseases, with Spencer (a scientist working in a hazardous chem lab) as Abel and his big brother Michael (one of the company's directors) as Cain. Spencer wants to develop the cure for the general good of mankind, while Michael wants to limit it to the wealthy few to make more profit. Michael eventually attempts to murder Spencer and Spencer's girlfriend so he'll be the only one who knows the secret of the drug. Michael then takes the drug to cure his own Huntington's and his body soon starts to decay due to the side effects, with Spencer unable to cure him.
  • Calling the Old Man Out: In "Fathers & Sons", Ronnie Dell has a very close relationship with his grandfather Joe but a distant one with his harsh and demanding father Hank. After Hank sends Joe to the retirement home Silver Sunset, Ronnie tells him that he wishes that Joe was his father instead of him. Later, Ronnie learns not only that Joe and all other Silver Sunset residents have had their memories systematically removed and sold to others but that Hank is one of the people buying the memories. When Hank argues that it is a way to keep Joe alive, Ronnie says that Silver Sunset is destroying everything that Joe is and that he is disgusted that his father is involved in it. He then tells Hank that he hates him. This conversation causes Hank to realize what Silver Sunset is doing is wrong.
  • Came Back Wrong: This is the main driver in the episode "New Lease". Dr. James Houghton invents a regeneration device. When he uses it on a patient, the patient comes back but dies horribly shortly afterwards. When he is shot, he uses the device on himself, and believing he will die soon, murders the robber. He finds out the device worked properly on him — because unlike the test subjects, his body was never frozen — and he will now go to prison for the rest of his life.
  • Canon Welding: Although the revival is an anthology show like its predecessor, it usually ended its seasons with money-saving clip shows tying multiple prior episodes together into a single continuity.
  • Can't Take Anything with You: A variation in "In Another Life" as it involves travel to an Alternate Universe rather than Time Travel. When the various alternate versions of Mason Stark are transported to the Eigenphase Industries CEO Mason's universe by the Quantum Mirror, they arrive naked.
  • Captivity Harmonica: There is a variation in "Small Friends" in which Lawrence plays a saxophone.
  • Captured Super-Entity:
    • In "Josh", Josh Butler, a super-entity of indeterminate origin and nature, is taken into custody by the US government.
    • In "The Beholder", Kyra, whose species lives on a different plane of existence, is briefly trapped in a magnetic field by Dwight Bordon, an MI6 agent on attachment to the NSA.
  • Career-Ending Injury:
    • In "Abduction", Ray was the star running back of the Eden Park High School football team until he injured his knee, bringing his football career to a swift end.
    • In "Lion's Den", Peter Shotwell was one of the stars of the hugely successful Lewisborough High School wrestling team from 1976 to 1979 but he tore up his left knee, ending his chances of a professional career.
  • The Casanova: In "Flower Child", Chris' best friend Allan Montesi frequently teases him about his engagement to Mia as he regards marriage as being tantamount to a death sentence. He claims that he will never get married as he enjoys playing the field too much. However, Allan later admits to Chris that it is all an act and that he would a stable, monogamous relationship but he keeps Looking for Love in All the Wrong Places.
  • Cassandra Truth:
    • Subverted in "Living Hell." A guy is caught after he warned the cops about the actions of a Serial Killer who he's been telepathically linked to for the last several weeks. The cops initially believe that he's the killer, but after he provides proof of the neural device implanted in his brain, they believe him.
    • In "Ripper", Dr. Jack York's efforts to convince his fiancée Lady Ellen and Inspector Harold Langford that Jack the Ripper is an alien creature that jumps from body to body fall on deaf ears. They instead believe that he is the Ripper and he is arrested and committed to an asylum. Lady Ellen visits him in the asylum and tells him that she is going to America as she needs time away from England. Immediately afterwards, Inspector Langford tells him that he is retiring from the police force and that he will be Lady Ellen's escort in America, which he describes as "the land of opportunity." He then coughs up green bile, indicating that he has been possessed by the creature. As he leaves, Langford assures Jack that Lady Ellen will "hardly feel a thing."
    • Discussed in "Final Appeal". In 2076, the time traveler Dr. Theresa Givens has been sentenced to death for possessing and promoting the use of advanced technology. She compares herself to the prophetess Cassandra given that she has traveled further into the future and has seen that humanity will be wiped out by a devastating plague in 2105. The scientists of that time will be unable to combat it due to the anti-technology laws.
    • In "A New Life", Daniel follows Father, the leader of the religious community where he has lived for the last two years, into the woods and sees him transform into an alien and vanish in a flash of light. Later that night, Daniel, his wife Beth and their newborn son William leave the village but, after walking about ten miles, they are confronted by Some Kind of Force Field which blocks their path. They find Jacob, a former member of the community who left more than a year earlier, living rough in the forest. After bringing them to his cave, Jacob tells Daniel and Beth that the barrier covers an area of 20 square miles and even extends into the sky. The next morning, Daniel awakens to find that Jacob has been killed and Beth has been attacked. Before he can even process this, he is found by Father and other community members and brought back to the village. His efforts to persuade the others that Father is an alien who has framed him are unsuccessful and he is sentenced to burn at the stake. Beth was brain damaged in the attack and therefore cannot corroborate his story.
    • In "Promised Land", Rebecca warns the other humans that plants and fruits were poisoned by the aliens, but many eat them anyway. Most of them die as a result.
  • Cast from Lifespan: "Blood Brothers" featured a serum that seemed to cure all ills, like the Fountain of Youth. Too late, the antagonist discovers that instead of simply giving you a new lease of life, it uses up all your life energy in a short burst, followed by Rapid Aging and death.
  • Casting Gag: It's possible that Wil Wheaton's being cast as the deeply unfortunate lead in the spaceship-set episode "The Light Brigade" was due to his previous work as Wesley Crusher.
  • Category Traitor: In "The Camp", Prisoner 98843 is deemed a traitor when she starts working with the camp staff. It doesn't help that she can't tell them why, and also is given one of their uniforms. They also view the staff in general this way, believing they're humans (not androids).
  • Cat Folk: In "Lion's Den", Peter Shotwell is the coach of the Lewisborough High School wrestling team, which is in the middle of a major losing streak. His old friend Jon gives him a supposedly all-natural performance enhancing drug called Neuroflex 500 which has yet to receive FDA approval. When Peter gives the drug to his team (including his son Morris), their strength and stamina dramatically improves. However, the drug has serious side effects and the team begin to exhibit animal characteristics such as fangs, sharp claws and eyes similar to those of a cat. These physical changes are accompanied by a marked increase in their aggressive tendencies. When Peter presses him for more information, Jon admits that Neuroflex 500 is laced with the DNA of a big cat and that it is not supposed to be having this effect. He speculates that the boys' transformations have been so dramatic because of the increased hormonal activity in teenagers compared with adults.
  • Celebrity Survivor: In "The Deprogrammers", Earth has been invaded by aliens and mankind has been brainwashed into slaves, Dr. Trent Davis stating that the aliens took a perverse pleasure in turning celebrities and leaders into slaves. A group of rebels, including his wife Jill, rescue Evan Cooper and try to deprogram him by reminding him of his life, including showing him a poster of his favorite movie.
    "I wonder where they are right now, I wonder where all the famous people are now."
  • The Chains of Commanding: The episode "Trial by Fire" deals with the US President being sequestered in a bunker after being informed that a massive object, traveling at half the speed of light, is going to hit Earth in roughly a half hour. It's up to him to decide what to do from there, though he has plenty of noise from his advisers.
  • Character Narrator: Five episodes of the series feature narration from a character within the story as well as the usual opening and closing narration from the Control Voice. Only "What Will the Neighbors Think?" features character narration outside of The Teaser of the relevant episode.
    • "The Grell" features narration from the Grell slave Jesha explaining that his master High Secretary Paul Kohler's plane was shot down by the Grell rebels, which marked the beginning of a struggle for survival for Grell and human alike.
    • Mona Bailey's narration is heard throughout "What Will the Neighbors Think?".
    • "Starcrossed" features narration from Michael Ryan explaining the war with the Hing, an alien race who invaded Earth in 2050, and its aftermath.
    • "Abaddon" features narration from Gwen Hutchinson explaining the manner in which the North American Corporation has controlled the lives of its shareholders, previously called citizens, since its foundation in 2102.
    • "Alien Shop" features narration from the alien shopkeeper explaining that he was sent to Earth as a penance and that his mission is to help humans by giving them an item in the shop that they need to improve their lives.
  • The Chessmaster: In "Better Luck Next Time", the Energy Beings in the bodies of Gerard and Kimble set up the events of several previous episodes ("Living Hell", "A Stitch in Time", "Heart's Desire" and "Ripper") for no reason other than their own amusement.
  • Child by Rape: In "Dark Child," an alien abducts Laura, rapes her, then returns her to Earth, where she gives birth to a daughter, Tammy. Although deeply traumatized by the experience, Laura does her best to raise Tammy. Years later, when Tammy is a teenager, the alien returns and reveals his previous assault on Laura was a ploy to create a powerful Half-Human Hybrid to use as a weapon against humanity. Just like any deadbeat dad, the alien's attempt to get Tammy to join him fails, then mother and daughter team up and kill him.
  • Child Eater:
    • In "Under the Bed," a boogeyman like monster steals children from their bedrooms to devour them.
    • In "The Grell", many humans believe that the Grell eat humans, especially children, but this is only a myth.
  • Christmas Episode: "The Conversion" and "The Revelations of 'Becka Paulson".
  • Chromosome Casting: "The Light Brigade" has an all-male cast.
  • Chronoscope: In "Time to Time", the time travel agency Chrononics has a viewing portal which allows them to monitor their agents when they travel through time. Clips from "Tribunal" and "Gettysburg" are used to represent these missions.
  • Circuit Judge: In "Rule of Law", Judge Joshua Finch travels to the planet Daedalus to preside over the case of a Medusan accused of attacking humans.
  • City in a Bottle: In "A New Life", approximately 40 young people who are tired of the rat race join a religious community in an isolated wooded area. It turns out that the 20 square mile area surrounding their village is part of a massive spaceship and that aliens intend to sell their descendants into slavery, after humanity's rebellious traits have been bred out of them.
  • Clingy MacGuffin: In "The Gun", a gun dealer named Donald Finley (who is really an alien in disguise) sells a strange gun to Matthew Logan for $300. As soon as Matthew uses it to kill his wife Sandra for having him sent to prison for abusing her, the gun became fused to Matthew's hand and all attempts to remove it failed. The fusion process intensified every time that he used the gun as he was slowly transforming into the ultimate killing machine. His father-in-law Cord van Owen is given an identical gun by Finley which likewise fuses itself to his skin after he fires it. However, it detaches itself when he refuses to kill Matthew in front of his son Ty, much to Finley's disappointment.
  • Clip Show: One each in Seasons 1, 3, 4, 5 and 6. Two in Season 7 (Those being the last two episodes...)
  • Clone Jesus: In "The Shroud", a religious fanatic and televangelist named Reverend Thomas Tilford has scientists extract DNA from the Shroud of Turin to order to recreate Jesus and insert the embryo into Marie Wells' uterus. While still in the womb, the child begins to display strange powers.
  • Clones Are People, Too: In "Replica," the clone in question, complete with the memories of the original, was created to replace the wife of a bio engineer who was wrongly thought to be irreversibly comatose. When the original awakens, a discussion begins of how to handle the copy, but murder is clearly off the table and instead their plan would allow the clone to have her own independent life.
  • Cloning Blues: The revival has "Think Like a Dinosaur" and, unusually, subverts the trope with "Replica," which also has one of the few happy endings in the new series.
  • Cloning Body Parts: In "Replica", the company TranGennix receives a $1 billion contract to produce cloned organs. The process was developed by the husband and wife team of Zach and Nora Griffiths, who own TranGennix with Peter Chandler.
  • Cockroaches Will Rule the Earth: Discussed in "Final Appeal". Justice Oliver Harbison believes that there will be nothing left on Earth but cockroaches and tumbleweeds if the anti-technology code is repealed and there is another nuclear war.
  • Coitus Ensues: In "Lithia", Major Mercer has sex with Miranda and then Ariel with really no buildup. Justified though as Mercer is the only man either has ever seen, and they're naturally fascinated. It's possibly implied too that in their society sexual mores are more relaxed.
  • Colonized Solar System:
    • In "Quality of Mercy" and "The Light Brigade", there are colonies on Mars and various moons in the Solar System. Europa base is a major part of the Solar System's defense perimeter.
    • On a much smaller scale, there is a research facility called Aphrodite on Venus in "The Joining".
    • In "Phobos Rising", both the Free Alliance and the Coalition of Middle Eastern and Pacific States have bases on Mars. It is also mentioned that both blocs had moonbases 30 years earlier and that the Alliance had one on a body known as Sagan V.
    • In "The Human Factor", the sequel to "Phobos Rising", there is a base on Jupiter's moon Ganymede in 2084. It was established by Free Alliance and Eastern Coalition moderates in order to terraform Ganymede and show that the two sides could live together in peace.
    • In "Worlds Apart", there is mention of a moonbase.
    • In "Think Like a Dinosaur", Earth has established a base, the Tuulen Transfer Station, on The Moon.
    • In "In the Blood", there are bases on the Martian moon Phobos and Jupiter's moon Titan.
  • Color-Coded Eyes: In "Last Supper", the immortal Laura/Jade's eyes are shown to be a very striking jade-green to signify that there's something unnatural about her.
  • Color Me Black:
    • In "The Grell", humans have enslaved a race of Rubber-Forehead Aliens. An important politician survives a plane crash with his family and his Grell servant, but is critically injured. The Grell heals him by infusing his master with Grell DNA, which will slowly transform him into one of them. Whereas he had previously callously killed a Grell servant who tried to flee, when he's treated in the same way by a human soldier who tries to kill him for being a "half-breed" he starts to see the error of his ways.
    • "Tribunal" features an ending where a Nazi war criminal who escaped justice for 50 years is put into the uniform of his prisoners and taken back in time to his own camp. His younger self shoots him for being Jewish.
  • Commune: In "Lithia", the future female society all live in these, which they call "enclaves". All resources appear to be shared as needed wherever the World Council rules they should go. From what can be seen, they even live communally in the same buildings (no separate houses are shown), a feature that not all real communes have.
  • Condemned Contestant: In "Judgment Day", the criminals are hunted down by the families of those they murdered. Declan McMahon manages to prove that the show's producer Jack Parson had framed him to get ratings. The episode ends with Parson being hunted down by him in turn.
  • Conjoined Twins: In "Inner Child", Anne Marie Reynolds and her sister, who was to have been named Marie, were conjoined twins. Their parents agreed to subject the two of them to an experiment in the womb which would kill one of the twins but give the survivor the strength to survive. Anne Marie was the lucky one and Marie was absorbed into her body.
  • The Constant:
    • In "Vanishing Act", Trevor McPhee travels forward in time to 1960, 1970, 1980 and 1990. He meets his wife Theresa, who eventually divorces him due to his unavoidable absences, in every time period. Trevor also meets Theresa's new husband Ray Carter in 1960, 1970 and 1980. As Ray died in 1986, he only sees a video recording of him in 1990. Trevor's son Mark, who was conceived during his brief sojourn in 1960, is present from 1970 onwards.
    • In "Tribunal", Leon Zgierski and Karl Rademacher are present as young men in Auschwitz in 1944 and as elderly men in Philadelphia in 1999.
    • In "Time to Time", Angie Palmer is present in UC Berkeley in both 1969 and 1989.
  • Continuity Reboot: This starts from a clean slate, with no connection to The Outer Limits (1963), and only has very loose continuity between episodes anyway.
  • Converse with the Unconscious:
    • In "The Inheritors", Daria Michaels has been in a coma since she was knocked down by a hit-and-run driver. Her husband Ian sits at her hospital bed and talks to her on a daily basis.
    • In "Replica", Zach Griffiths talks to his wife Nora, who has been in a coma for a year, every time that he visits her in hospital.
  • Cordon Bleugh Chef: In "What Will the Neighbors Think?", Tory Beth Walters makes cookies using baking soda toothpaste instead of baking soda so that people can clean their teeth while they eat them.
  • Corrupt Corporate Executive: In "Virtual Future", David Warner played Bill Trenton, a Research, Inc.'s evil CEO. He hires a research scientist who developed a device that could predict the future, but decides to use the device to win an election by murdering his rival.
  • Courtroom Episode:
    • While the original 1964 version of "I, Robot" involves a robot named Adam being tried for the murder of his creator Dr. Link, the 1995 remake involves a capacity hearing to determine whether Adam deserves a trial or should be simply dismantled.
    • The Season Three episode "Bodies of Evidence" takes place in 2037 and involves Captain William Clark being put on trial for the murder of three other members of the crew of the space station Meridian. He is defended by his ex-wife Robin Dysart.
    • The Season Six finale "Final Appeal" (which was originally intended as the Series Finale) takes place in 2076 in a world that has banned technology in the aftermath of a devastating nuclear war in June 2059 which killed 80% of the world's population (6.8 billion people). It features Dr. Theresa Givens (a returning character from Season Two's "A Stitch in Time") appealing her death sentence for using her time machine before the United States Supreme Court.
    • The Season Seven episode "Rule of Law" involves Judge Joshua Finch, newly arrived on the colony planet Daedalus, presiding over the trial of a Medusan who is accused of the murder of three humans.
  • Cowboy Episode: "Heart's Desire" takes place in the Oregon Territory in 1872.
  • Crapsack World: Many episodes are interconnected through the mysterious Innobotics Corporation and their Ridiculously Human Robots, not to mention that every season produces a couple of sequel episodes for earlier stories for double the Cruel Twist Ending!
  • Crapsaccarine World: "Lithia" paints the post-war world as a low-tech agrarian paradise free of the destructive urges of men. It soon becomes obvious that the Council are covertly taking advantage of the enclaves and ignore their needs in favor of their own designs; they also play favorites. Among other things, they allow the Hyacinth enclave to dam up the river that Lithia uses to power their grain mill (forcing them to use manual labor, and with much lower production rate) so Hyacinth can run an electric power plant, but refuses to let Lithia trade for the electricity (which they could, again, use to run their mill with much greater efficiency) and in fact won't put to use at all until they've taken a year to deliberate. They also impose enormous taxes without any justifications (since they know Hera won't object, since "Women don't fight") which, coupled with the aforementioned inability to produce enough, will starve them. But everyone except Mercer believes that the Council have their best interests at heart since they're women. Not to mention that, despite all the talk about how men are the destructive and violent ones, it's the women who threaten and attack first.
  • Creepy Crossdresser: In "What Will the Neighbors Think?", after he sleeps with a woman, Dom Pardo likes to keep their underwear and wear it himself as he loves the feel of the silk against his skin. He does so with underwear belonging to Shirley Baxter and Delia Pendergast. After gaining telepathic powers, Mona Bailey uses this piece of information to blackmail Dom into letting her join his poker game with Shirley and Delia's respective husbands Vince and Miles.
  • Creepy Monotone: In "Family Values", Gideon typically speaks in one, though he does occasionally vary his tone when expressing anger.
  • Crisis of Faith:
    • In "Corner of the Eye", Father Anton Jonascu has been ministering to the sick and homeless in his community for decades but suffers a crisis of faith as he cannot solve all of these people's problems, let alone all of the world's problems.
    • In "Revival", Ezra Burnham lost his faith after the death of his wife as God did not answer his prayers for her to recover.
  • Cruel and Unusual Death: In "The Light Brigade", Major John Skokes, the cadet and the Chief Weapons Officer are exposed to a lethal dose of gamma radiation while climbing past the engine core of the Light Brigade. They begin to suffer the symptoms of radiation poisoning with minutes.
  • Cruel Twist Ending: The series does this so often that the trope used to be named Outer Limits Twist.
    • "Quality of Mercy": John Skokes is tortured alongside another human captive named Bree Tristan in an alien prison. She gradually has alien skin grafted onto her in order to convert her into one of them. Once John reveals to his fellow captive Bree that humanity secretly has been feigning defeat and is in fact planning a secret attack on the alien home world in thirty days led by a hidden group of its fighters located on the far side of the sun. She is then taken away and reveals she is fact a spy changing back into her true form meaning he just revealed a major secret to the enemy with him having nothing to do to stop them.
    • "The New Breed": Dr. Andy Groening succeeds in killing the nano-bots by sacrificing his life by allowing Dr. Stephen Ledbetter to kill him and destroy the lab containing the remaining nano-bots in a fire. However, earlier on Andy had made love to his fiance Judy (Stephen's sister) infecting her with the robots as implied by her cutting herself on some glass after his death which is instantly healed meaning all of his sacrifice was for naught.
    • "Birthright": Senator Richard Adams and his doctor Dr. Leslie McKenna realize that he is in fact an alien that has been lobbying a new fuel additive that will in 30 years time render the earth inhospitable for all life except the aliens. He informs a trusted reporter of this information Kyle Hallar. When Richard enters a taxi cab later that day, he finds out on the radio that Hallar has been murdered and that Leslie has been framed for the crime. He tries to escape the taxi only to find the driver is one of his kind.
    • "The Voice of Reason": Randall Strong is unable to persuade the committee that the threat of alien invasion of Earth is imminent as the committee votes in favor to disregard his claims. He realizes that Thornwell, one of the most vocal opponents to Strong, may in fact be an alien (the same kind of Senator Richard Adams from the previous episode wanting to terraform Earth); as a result he shoots him dead. Unfortunately, it turns out that of the five members of the committee, Thornwell was one of two that secretly supported him and voted for his investigations to be taken seriously. It is revealed that two of the newest members of the committee are in fact aliens who belong to the same kind as Adams and are elated to what has just transpired with Adams' superior from the last episode to become the new head of the committee replacing Thornwell.
    • "Mind Over Matter": A scientist creates an AI machine to reach into a female lovers coma patient's mind to help wake her up. It's a living dream and he falls in love with her avatar in the dream despite others saying her mind would have been too weak to become visible as the avatar due to her condition and it is simply a projection made by him. Occasionally during this therapy they are frequently attacked by a grimy evil looking version of the woman he believes is the AI attempting to take over whenever they become intimate. In the end he lures and strangles the evil woman killing her. The patient then dies in real life as it is revealed that the avatar he was falling in love with was the AI who gained a crush on him and wanted to explore the notion of love and that the evil version was in fact the woman he was in love with as she was really too weak to manifest fully inside the virtual environment. As a result he has just killed the one woman he always loved at the behest of the computer AI.
    • "Beyond the Veil": Eddie Wexler is unable to save Courtney from being killed by Dr. Sherrick's experiments and is framed for her murder. Not only that, he realizes that not only was his previous abduction real, but Sherrick and all of the staff are aliens, and take him away to be isolated from the rest of the world.
    • "First Anniversary": Despite her attempts to keep Norman Glass as her husband, Ady is unable to do so and when the effects of her hallucinogenic disguise wear ofFf, he becomes so repulsed by her true form that he is carried off by paramedics. Her friend's husband dies under similar circumstances. A while later Ady is seen changing her form again and is being chatted up by another man meaning she will have to repeat the cycle every year and will never find true love. (Oh, and she'll also probably drive many more men to insanity or death.)
    • "Straight and Narrow": An exclusive private school brainwashes its students for use as mercenaries, similar to the movie Disturbing Behavior, which it predates. The one student who is immune to the process manages to escape and tell authorities — who prove to be alumni, and drag him back to undergo the procedure (now corrected to work on the likes of him) as the assassination he'd tried to prevent is successfully carried out.
    • "Trial by Fire": Newly elected president Charles Halsey has used the slogan: "Let me be your friend" but is brought underground when a meteor is heading towards Earth. It is realized it is an armada of aliens. After a few incidents that are thought to be signs of an invasion a message from the aliens is sent. Tensions grow as other nations and the public become aware of the aliens and the President sends a message back to admit that the aliens' video message cannot be interpreted and that any attempts to enter the atmosphere will be viewed as a threat by the rest of the world. Unable to translate the message from the aliens the Russian and America leaders decide they are threat after one ship from the armada crashes into the ocean believing it to be a means to conquer the oceans or test defenses. After both countries first strike are destroyed by the fleet the aliens retaliate and send a nuclear bomb to Moscow and Washington, D.C.. Just before they strike both cities killing millions including the president and his staff the first message is deciphered. It was in English distorted by a liquid background saying: "Let us be your friends."
    • "The Deprogrammers": A group of humans including Evan beat alien brainwashing with the help of an underground resistance (which includes his wife) and Professor Trent Davis eventually manage to take down their master Milord. Once he is dead it is revealed that Trent is under the control of another alien who now takes control of his rival's territory, captures the resistance members, and begins reprogramming Evan and his wife for his benefit.
    • "The Light Brigade": Since the events of "Quality of Mercy," humanity has begun to lose the war for real since the aliens tricked John Skokes into revealing secret military Intel. John Skokes, who has escaped his captors, heads the ship called The Light Brigade which carries a powerful planet destroying bomb that will destroy the alien threat once and for all when it is deployed on their home planet. After the aliens ambush the ship, everyone is killed immediately or knocked unconscious and given a fatal dose of radiation which will kill them soon. The remaining young cadet manages to unmask a traitor, revealed to be a spy disguised as Skokes, and gets to the destination and drops the bomb before his ship can be boarded. Unfortunately, the ship had been turned around whilst everyone was unconscious by Skokes, meaning he has just sent the bomb to an already crippled Earth, ensuring the aliens' victory.
    • "Second Thoughts": The aging Dr. Jacob Valerian transfers his mind into mentally challenged helper Karl Durand. Karl absorbs the mind of a colleague of the doctor who was using him to make money off the mind transferring device. Using the two minds he makes millions on the stock exchange and does this to gain the affection of his teacher and caregiver Rose, who is engaged to a poet. To finally win her affections, he absorbs the mind of the poet and disposes of his body by dropping it off the bridge. After his new personality freaks out Rose, he eventually commits suicide with a bullet to the brain. It's when Rose hears the news of her fiance's death she reveals to a detective that he was temperamental and suicidal.
    • "Heart's Desire": Each pair of outlaws of the titular town use their power against each other, which results in Frank killing JD, and Jake killing Frank. After Jake kills Frank, Jake has a change of heart. Because of his change of heart, Ben attempts to kill Jake. Jake refuses to fight his brother, and asks the visitor to take away his power. The visitor does so, and Ben is just about to kill Jake when Ben's power gets taken away by the visitor. Just after his power gets taken away, Ben gets shot by Jake's ex-lover, who witnessed the violence. The visitor reveals he gave the powers to test humanity on whether they were a threat. Humanity fails and proves to the aliens that they are not a threat and will in fact destroy themselves before they become one.
    • "Tempests": In order to save millions on a space colony from death from a deadly pandemic, John Virgil must deliver a serum. After the ship crashes on a moon he is bitten by a spider and begins to shift between two realities. He must figure out which of the two realities he's switching between are real, the seemingly perfect one or the darker one. He makes the "right" choice - and we find out that both worlds are false ones. His real situation is much worse, he's cocooned by giant spiders and slowly being eaten, kept in a hallucinogenic state and, as a result of his failure, everyone presumably dies with Governor Mudry being the only one to see the real world.
    • "Dead Man's Switch": A fleet of alien spaceships are seen heading toward Earth. Knowing they might be evil, a Doomsday plan with a Dead Man's Switch is prepared, with five people in individual bunkers sharing the responsibility to prevent the doomsday plan from being enacted (should it become unnecessary) by regularly pressing a button to keep the doomsday device from turning on. The five people in the bunkers are gradually killed off in a variety of ways. The brief hope for peace is extinguished when a second fleet of colonization ships is found and the button pressers lose all contact. They die in their separate bunkers one by one until the last one remains. He finally decides to let it happen when he gets a message from his commander telling him they defeated the aliens with a new weapon. He stops the Doomsday Device at the last second and is told to keep pushing the button until they can disarm it. The last scene shows the aliens who used the commander as a puppet, eating his brains over the glowing red ruins of Washington DC.
    • "Nightmare": A crew of a ship during a war with an alien race is transporting a bomb when they are captured by the enemy, followed by being tortured and interrogated till the reach the breaking point. As a result, one of the men, who thinks another has betrayed them, stabs him to death in the stomach...where it's revealed that they were on Earth All Along with the whole thing staged by their general to test their psychological endurance. Even worse, one of the members, who didn't learn the truth until too late, had been forced to remove the bomb's defenses but instead, bypassed its safeguards and activated it, with no way to stop it. While it's this trope for the crew, it can be considered Laser-Guided Karma for the general.
    • The show even did this to a remake of one of its own episodes! In the original "I, Robot" from the sixties show, robot Adam Link is judged to be Just a Machine, and sentenced to dismantling. On the way however, he sacrifices himself to save a pedestrian from a truck, proving his humanity. In the remake, Adam is judged to be human after all...and then sacrifices himself to save a pedestrian from a truck, proving his humanity, even though he just proved it!
  • Cure for Cancer:
    • In "Blood Brothers", a scientist tries to develop an effective Knockout Gas to be used by the riot police. However, despite the numerous trials, the gas still has a 20% lethality rate. One experiment results in the test monkey not only surviving but also becoming immune to any and all disease or poison. The scientist's Corrupt Corporate Executive brother wants to withhold this cure-all from the general population, pointing out that this would result in overpopulation. However, he uses the drug himself to cure his hereditary condition. In the end, though, it's revealed that the drug's effect is extremely temporary. In fact, it rapidly drains all the body's resources, leaving the person a frail shell only surviving through the use of life-sustaining machines.
    • "The New Breed" involves the use of nanites to monitor and repair cells. However, their "repair" feature doesn't appear to have a limit, and they start improving what they see as flaws of the human body. The person who injects himself with them tests his ability to hold his breath underwater... and the nanites end up giving him gills. Eventually, he also gets eyes on the back of his head to improve his vision. In the end, the inventor of the nanites, his friend, ends up having to kill him. It should be noted that the nanites are still in the testing phase, and the guy only takes them because he has terminal cancer.
    • In "The Voyage Home", the alien in the form of Pete Claridge tells Ed Barkley that it will give humanity the cure for cancer once it arrives on Earth.
  • Culture Police:
    • In "Essence of Life", the HR2 virus wiped out billions of people worldwide in 2003. The Global Code of Conduct, which was introduced sometime later, bans open displays of emotion and reflecting on the past as it is believed that such behavior is detrimental to the rebuilding of society. The Code Enforcement Agency (CEA) is a global organisation charged with investigating violations of the Code, which carry strict penalties. By 2014, the authorities are working on a drug which can chemically suppress emotions as they have come to the conclusion that it is impossible for people to control their emotions indefinitely.
    • In "Final Appeal", anti-grieving laws were introduced after a nuclear war wiped out 80% of humanity in 2059. They were repealed at some point prior to 2076.
    • In "Stasis", books have been transferred to discs. Hardcopy versions can only be procured on the Black Market.
  • Cute Mute: Tali in "Promised Land", who is pretty, sweet and mute.
  • Cute Ghost Girl:
    • Kyra in the episode "The Beholder", though she was an alien that was "out of phase".
    • "Out of Body" has a woman's experiment leave her disembodied and her body in a coma. This being Outer Limits, she totally dies for real by the end, as does her husband who is trying to get the machine to restore her. It's made as un-depressing as such an ending can be - unusual for The Outer Limits, which almost always went for dark twists - by having them appear in spirit form and reunite, before vanishing for parts unknown but seeming optimistic about it.
  • Cute Monster Girl: In the episode "Quality of Mercy", a captured Space Cadet, Bree Tristan, is being forcibly transformed by her alien captors into one of their own against her will. The slow alterations they implement don't change her outward beauty much, and her cellmate, Major John Skokes, falls in love with her. This was part of their plan all along, since she's actually one of the aliens sent to spy on him to obtain valuable military information.
  • Cyberspace: In "Human Trials", Captains Kelvin Parkhurst, Eric Woodward, Alice Wheeler and William Hinman, members of the Free Alliance military, participate in a test to determine which of them is the best qualified for a secret solo mission. The test involves placing the subjects in a virtual environment via a neural stimulator to gauge their reactions to the scenarios presented. Clips are shown from "Nightmare", "Hearts and Minds", "The Human Operators", "In the Blood", "Monster", "The Voyage Home", "Tempests" and "Worlds Within" to represent the virtual scenarios.

    D 
  • Danger: Thin Ice: In "Nest", Matt Archer was sucked under the ice and died while playing hockey with his brother Robby and their friend Jack Burrell.
  • Date Rape: In "Family Values", Candace Miller warms to the household robot Gideon after he saves her from being raped by her boyfriend Clay.
  • Deadly Closing Credits:
    • "A Stitch In Time" ended like this, with a newly-forged time-traveling Knight Templar gunning down a serial-killer-to-be.
    • This happened on a much larger scale in "Trial by Fire". The newly inaugurated U.S. President Charles Halsey and his advisors are monitoring the approach of an alien fleet - who, as it turns out, were coming in peace - from a nuclear bunker in Washington, D.C.. After the United States and Russia launch nuclear missiles at the fleet, the aliens destroy said missiles with ease before they reach their targets. They then launch two weapons of their own in retaliation: one at Washington, D.C. and the other at Moscow. With only about a minute to think about it, the President, his wife Elizabeth and his advisors prepare to meet their fate. As the episode ends, the screen turns to white, signifying the destruction of the U.S. capital.
    • It happened on an even larger scale in "The Light Brigade". In that episode, a sequel to "Quality of Mercy", humanity is losing an interstellar war against an extremely belligerent and much more advanced alien race who are hellbent on exterminating them. In a last ditch attempt to turn the tide, the Light Brigade is part of a fleet sent on a mission to attack the alien homeworld with a subatomic bomb, a Doomsday Device which can disrupt matter on a subatomic level. The ship is attacked and disabled by the aliens while it is approaching their planet but a cadet, one of only four survivors, is able to launch the subatomic bomb. However, it turns out that the alien posing as Major John Skokes turned the ship around while the cadet was unconscious and the cadet has just dropped the bomb on Earth. The subatomic bomb is seen making its way to Earth as the episode ends.
    • It again happened on a very large scale in "Relativity Theory". A survey team travels to Tau Gamma Prime in search of resources which are desperately needed on Earth, which has run out of practically all of its own natural resources. Although the planet is believed to be uninhabited, the survey team comes under attack from a group of seven foot tall reptilian aliens. The team's xenobiologist Teresa Janovitch favors negotiating with them as she does not want to repeat Earth's dark history with respect to the treatment of indigenous populations but the security chief Sgt. Adam Sears leads an attack on their encampment in a network of caves. He kills one of them who is holding a gold object which he assumes is a religious totem. However, Teresa's scans of the corpses of two of the aliens indicate that their cranial sutures are not fully closed, which if they were humans would mean that they were between 10 and 15 years old. In other words, Sears killed an alien Boy Scout troop on a camping trip. She then realizes that the gold object is not a religious totem but an emergency locator beacon. The survey ship is soon destroyed by a huge and extremely advanced alien ship but not before it manages to download their database and learn the location of Earth. The episode ends with a shot of the ship approaching Earth, preparing to launch an attack on the homeworld of the brutal species who would butcher children.
    • Once again, it happened on a very large scale in "Nightmare" and in a similar fashion to "The Light Brigade". While approaching the planet N184, the United World Forces spaceship Archipelago - which is carrying a top secret device that turned out to be a Doomsday Device - comes under attack from the Ebonites with whom humanity has been at war for some time. They are taken prisoner and subjected to psychological torture. The ship's civilian crewmember Kristen O'Keefe, one of the chief designers of the bomb, is forced to reprogram it and disable all of the booby traps. After Major Ronald Neguchi is killed by Lt. Christopher Valentine, it is revealed that everything that happened after the Archipelago came under attack was part of an elaborate simulation being conducted at Fort Dix. It was designed to evaluate how the crew would respond to being captured by the Ebonites but things got out of hand. Things get even more out of hand when O'Keefe confesses that she had merely pretended to disable the booby traps; she had actually been bypassing the safeguards and firewalls in order to activate the bomb and destroy the Ebonites since it appeared as if she and the rest of the Archipelago were going to die in enemy territory in any event. Much like "Trial by Fire", the screen turns to white as the episode ends in order to signify the bomb detonating and destroying most of the Western hemisphere. Given the environmental chaos which would ensue, it is likely that most, if not all, of the Earth's population was wiped out as a result.
    • In the final scene of "Judgment Day", Declan McMahon has tracked down the former Judgment Day producer Jack Parson, who framed him for Caitlin Channing's murder and killed her sister Allison. He proceeds to electrocute him with the specially designed 10,000 volt taser that has been provided to him by Judgment Day. The episode ends with the sound of electricity surging and Jack screaming.
  • Deadly Game: "Judgment Day" did a version of this with a reality TV show in which convicted criminals are hunted down on camera as their punishment.
  • Dead Man's Switch:
    • In "Dead Man's Switch", after an alien fleet is detected approaching Earth, a Doomsday Device is prepared by linking every nuclear, chemical and biological weapon in existence. Five people are placed in five bunkers around the world. When an alarm sounds, they have 30 seconds to hit a dead man's switch to disarm it. If none of the five do so in time, the doomsday device will detonate.
    • In "Final Exam", Seth Todtman has his 50 megaton cold fusion device rigged up so that it will detonate if his heart stops.
  • Deadpan Snarker: In "Abduction", Cody Phillips continually makes snarky remarks at the expense of Jason, Ray, Brianna and Danielle after they are abducted by aliens. He later admits that he began acting this way as everyone in school picked on him and he wanted to give them a reason for doing so.
  • Dead Person Impersonation:
    • In "In Another Life", the project manager Mason Stark impersonates his Alternate Universe counterpart, the Eigenphase Industries CEO Mason, after he is killed.
    • In "Skin Deep", Sid Camden impersonates Chad Warner using a Holographic Disguise after killing him.
  • Death Is the Only Option: In the episode "Better Luck Next Time", a police detective is manipulated by a pair of malevolent energy beings into being their plaything, intending to turn her into a host after they've tricked her into shooting a fellow cop. However, their hosts burn out rapidly, they can't survive for long without one, and their current hosts are just about to expire. She utters the episode's title just before shooting herself in the head, bringing the energy beings' centuries-long murder spree to an end.
  • Decapitation Presentation: In "The Deprogrammers", Evan Cooper killed his former master Koltok and presented his head to Professor Trent Davis as proof. Davis then presented it to his own master Megwan, who had secretly orchestrated his rival Koltok's death.
  • Deceased Parents Are the Best: In "Inner Child", Anne Marie Reynolds idolizes her late father, who committed suicide, but has an extremely distant relationship with her mother, whom she blames for his death.
  • Depraved Bisexual: In "Caught in the Act", the parasite-infected girl who absorbs people's lifeforce through sex tries to force herself on both men and women.
  • Depopulation Bomb:
    • In "Resurrection", humanity was wiped out due to a biological war on July 24, 1997, which was then 18 months in the future. In 2009, two androids named Martin and Alicia recreate a human named Cain from uncontaminated DNA samples.
    • In "Rite of Passage", humanity was wiped out centuries ago through unknown means. The Vorak discovered Earth sometime later and used their genetic expertise to recreate humanity using the samples left behind on skeletons.
    • In "The Human Factor", humanity is almost completely wiped out in the final phase of the war between the Free Alliance and the Coalition of Middle Eastern and Pacific States. On April 23, 2084, the Free Alliance launched an all-out attack on the Eastern Coalition in the hope of finally bringing the long war to an end. However, they underestimated the Coalition's firepower, which was equal to their own, and Earth is rendered uninhabitable.
  • Deprogram: One especially heartbreaking episode, "The Deprogrammers", has a scientist and his assistant deprogram the personal servant of an alien from a race that has conquered the Earth in order to assassinate him. It ends with The Cruel Twist Ending that the assassination was orchestrated by a rival of the alien's same species, and both the servant and his wife will now be reprogrammed.
  • Descent into Addiction: In "Ripper", the former Harley Street surgeon Dr. Jack York became addicted to absinthe and opium after his misdiagnosis resulted in the death of the young daughter of a duke.
  • Despair Event Horizon: In "Glyphic", every child in the small town of Tolemy (with the exception of Cassie and Louis Boussard) died of a rare form of brain cancer due to contamination from the town's mill. This resulted in the townspeople losing all hope for the future.
  • Devolution Device: In "Descent", Dr. Arthur Zeller is a submissive, unassertive anthropologist who is mocked and taken advantage of by almost everyone. He often admires the university's exhibit on Homo erectus and wishes that he could emulate the dominant behavior of early man. Arthur develops a DNA serum which is designed to make the subject more dominant and successfully tests it on a mouse. He then decides to inject himself with it. The change is immediately apparent as he becomes more assertive and aggressive at work. There are also numerous physical alterations. Arthur finds that his mind occasionally reverts to that of a Homo erectus. After his proposal for a new project is rejected by the head of the anthropology school Professor Martin Standfield and he is suspended for his erratic behavior, Arthur savagely beats Standfield in the car park. He then injects his colleague Dr. Laura White, for whom he has feelings, with the serum as he believes that this is the only way that she will respect him but the transformation process does not take hold in her case. When he finally admits what he has done, Laura's tests show that his cerebral cortex is shrinking and his skeletal structure is undergoing major changes. Arthur eventually reverts to a complete specimen of Homo erectus and is placed in the university exhibit.
  • Died in Your Arms Tonight: In "Corner of the Eye", two best friends successfully foil an alien invasion, then one dies of his injuries in the other's arms.
  • Dirty Communists: In "Lithia", the female society in the future appears to be communist, allocating resources and supplies based on need, as decided by their Council. Mercer, a man from the past, does not like this attitude one bit.
  • Disability Immunity:
    • In "From Within", the alien parasites are unable to take the intellectually impaired Howie Morrison as a host due to his different brain chemistry.
    • In "Stream of Consciousness", Ryan Unger suffered brain damage in a car accident as a child and is therefore unable to use the neural implant that connects everyone else to the Stream. When an apparent computer virus begins to spread through the Stream (which turns out to be the Stream itself trying to collate all available information) and kill people, Ryan's lack of an implant makes him immune.
  • Disappeared Dad: In "Black Box", Lt. Colonel Brandon Grace abandoned his wife Karen and his daughter Cammie, which later causes him to feel severe guilt.
  • The Disembodied: In the episode "Free Spirit", a human test subject became a disembodied body-possessing spirit after his body was terminated in the middle of a mind transference experiment. Then he comes back for revenge against the scientists responsible for his death.
  • Disintegrator Ray: In "Something About Harry", Harry Longworth and his partner Parker use an energy weapon on humans whose bodies have been occupied by the alien parasites. It turns the humans' bodies into green slime but leaves the parasites intact. The parasites are then placed in a special container.
  • Distress Call: In "The Message", Jennifer Winter, who is deaf, begins to hear strange noises after having a revolutionary cochlear implant installed. Although many other people including her husband Sam believe that they are nothing more than hallucinations, she and the hospital janitor / former NASA scientist Robert Vitale eventually determine that she is receiving an alien message in binary. More specifically, it is a distress call featuring instructions on how to build a high energy laser beam which can redirect the aliens' ship, which is hurtling towards The Sun.
  • Ditto Aliens: In "The Deprogrammers", the Torkor Koltok mentions that humans all look alike to him.
  • Do Androids Dream?:
    • The question is posed in "Valerie 23" when the protagonist gets involved with a Sex Bot and wonders if she could truly be considered alive. He determines that the difference between a Ridiculously Human Robot and a real human being is that the latter has fear of death. His belief is confirmed when she proves unafraid at the prospect of her own destruction when she is due to be dismantled after developing a psychotic obsession with him. When he ultimately destroys Valerie after she tries to kill his human love interest again, she admits that she's afraid of what's coming.
    • In "Glitch", Dr. Edward Normandy tells the android Tom Seymour that he doesn't dream when Tom learns of his true nature and thinks that he is having a nightmare. He later claims that androids do not have a soul as everything that they are is contained on a personality chip. After escaping, Tom leaves a holographic message for Normandy refuting this.
  • Documentary Episode:
    • The majority of "A Special Edition" is presented as an episode of the Show Within a Show The Whole Truth which features an exposé of the secret experiments being conducted into genetic engineering, cloning, extending longevity and reviving the dead by the US government and companies working on its behalf.
    • About one-third of "Judgment Day" is presented as an episode of the titular Immoral Reality Show.
  • Does Not Like Men: In "Lithia" most of the women have this attitude, not surprisingly since their religion teaches that men are evil and destroyed by the Goddess as a result. However, a couple of them are more open-minded, having sex with Major Mercer and aiding him in his plans.
  • Domestic Abuse:
    • In "Unnatural Selection", Howard and Joanne Sharp believe that their close friend and neighbor Tony Blake is abusing his wife Fran due to the frequent sounds of objects being broken coming from their house and the presence of a bruise on her face on one occasion. However, it turns out that both were caused by the Blakes' son Timmy, whom they are hiding because he is suffering from Genetic Rejection Syndrome.
    • In "Mary 25", Charlie Bouton regularly beats and psychologically abuses his wife Teryl, reducing her to tears on a daily basis. It turns out that he murdered her some time earlier and replaced her with an android copy to cover his tracks.
    • In "The Balance of Nature", Greg Matheson physically and verbally abuses his wife Barbara.
    • In "The Gun", Matthew Logan served 22 months of a four year sentence for beating his wife Sandra to within an inch of her life. He had been abusing her for quite some time beforehand. The first thing that he does once he gets out of prison is buy a gun and kill her.
    • In "Mona Lisa", Teddy Madden was abused by her ex-husband Al during their marriage.
  • Don't Go Into the Woods: In "Under the Bed", many generations of parents told their children not to play in the woods outside Buford. It turns out that there is a child snatching monster living in them.
  • Don't You Dare Pity Me!: In "Valerie 23", a guy in a wheelchair who works at a robotics company is approached by his boss because they want him to test the new robotic companion they've built. He's incredibly pissed off at the suggestion and that his colleagues would think of him as "a loser who couldn't get a real girl". It takes a lot of time for him to be open to the suggestion, and even more time before he eventually relents to her advances.
  • Doomed Hometown: In "The Grid", Scott Bowman discovers that almost everyone in his hometown of Halford, Washington has been taken over by a computer.
  • Doppelgänger Replacement Love Interest:
    • Subverted in "The Second Soul". One man's wife dies and donates her body to an alien race (they can occupy and revive recently dead bodies, and need to do so to live). He meets the recipient, and finds out that they do sometimes inherit random memories from their hosts, but she does not fall in love with him, becomes bothered by his following her around and eventually gets a restraining order against him. It's even hinted that the process is set up to prevent the aliens from being close to family members of their hosts, presumably to prevent this from becoming a regular occurrence.
    "If I look like her, if I sound like her, I might be her? The answer is no."
    • In "In Another Life", a man mourning the death of his wife gets sent to a parallel universe. He quickly tries to find the alternate version of her, only to discover she already has a boyfriend. In the end, when he decides to stay, he meets the alternate version of his wife again and they strike up a friendship, leaving him hopeful that they may get together in the future.
  • Downer Ending: Nearly every episode ends in soul-crushing gloom and despair. Humans Are the Real Monsters, it's a Crapsack World, we get it, we get it...
  • Dream Within a Dream: In "The Sentence", Dr. Jack Henson believed that he exited the Virtual Reality prison that he created, was convicted of reckless endangerment in causing the death of Cory Izacks and served a 20 year prison sentence. However, he later learns that he had been in the virtual world for the entire time (which amounted to only a few hours in the real world). His guilt at risking Cory Izacks' life created the scenario.
  • Dreaming of Things to Come: In "Monster", Rachel Sanders has a dream which turns out to be prophetic in which she sees herself surrounded by the corpses of soldiers.
  • Dressing as the Enemy: In "Tribunal", Aaron Zgierski and Nicholas Prentice disguise themselves as SS officers when they bring the elderly Karl Rademacher, whom they force to dress as a prisoner, back in time to Auschwitz in 1944.
  • Driven to Suicide: In "The Grid", Eileen Brennan commits suicide as she can no longer stand the voices of the computer in her mind, especially since it had earlier forced her to kill her husband Peter.
  • Due to the Dead:
    • In "The Grell", an alien race stranded on Earth are treated as slaves, with plenty of Fantastic Racism to go around. One such example is that soldiers will often leave the bodes tied to the ground face-up, spitting in the face of traditional face-down burial which allows their souls to move on properly.
    • "Promised Land": In spite of him trying to steal from their farm, Krenn and Dlavan provide David with their people's funeral rites. This includes beheading his corpse though, which only reinforces Rebecca's (who's watching) belief that their kind are monsters.
    • In "Rule of Law", the Medusans place their dead on racks and burn their bodies so that they can pass on to the afterlife. Although they killed Matt Armstrong and two others in the process of defending their hatchlings, they nevertheless performed the same ceremony on them. However, the burned bodies were later found by a posse led by Matt's brother Jake, who regarded it as desecrating the dead.
  • Dumb Is Good: In "From Within", Neil Patrick Harris plays a man whose mental retardation renders him immune to Id-unleashing parasites. It occurs again in "Stream of Conciousness". While not mentally retarded, a neurological defect he gained from a car accident as a child leaves Ryan Unger unable to access the Stream a cybernetic network which allows the vast majority of humanity access to all of their knowledge within seconds. When a glitch threatens to destroy humanity by causing information overlords, he realizes that he is the only one to save the world. He eventually does and begins to teach them basic skills like reading and writing once they are saved.
  • Dug Too Deep: "From Within" has a group of miners blast into an ancient cave containing a dinosaur fossil and a crapload of worms that quickly infest the miners and, shortly after, the whole town. Luckily, they hate light and need salt to survive.
  • Dwindling Party: In "Promised Land", the humans who escaped their labor camp start out with over a dozen members, but by the end only three are left.
  • Dying Town:
    • In "Glyphic", the small town of Tolemy is on its last legs after a brain cancer outbreak killed most of the town's children.
    • In "Seeds of Destruction", Hobson was a dying town until MacroSeed arrived. The company paid a small fortune to rent several of its fields in order to grow TX-40, their genetically engineered strain of corn.

    E 
  • Ear Ache: In "Afterlife", Stiles and the aliens have an ability to emit a high-pitched sound is painful for humans.
  • Earn Your Happy Ending: Not quite as common, but they are there.
    • In "Joyride", the NASA astronaut Colonel Theodore Harris saw a strange violet light while onboard the Aspire 7 on September 16, 1963. The light enveloped the capsule and he aborted the mission. His steadfast claim that he had encountered aliens while in space was not taken seriously and the NASA psychological assessment determined that it had merely been a hallucination. Harris was completely discredited. The continual accusations that he was mentally unstable led him to check himself into a psychiatric institution for a brief period. On one occasion, he even hacked into a computer at The Pentagon in order to access his file but the charges were dropped. Harris is furious when he learns that his old friend and fellow astronaut Wayne caught a glimpse of similar lights during an orbit of Earth but kept it to himself for the sake of his career. In the words of his wife Madelaine, he was a "one man trainwreck." Although she left him because she could no longer handle the stress, they never stopped loving each other. On a second trip to space aboard the Daedalus XL-141 in 2001, Harris once again encountered the aliens. As their intention had been to observe but not interfere, they send him back in time to 1963 and alter history so that his mission was successful. He has the opportunity to live his life over again and avoid making the same mistakes.
  • Earth All Along:
    • In "The Light Brigade", the crew of a stricken ship must launch a Doomsday weapon on an enemy planet in order to save humanity. However, in one of the Cruel Twist Endings the revival series became infamous for, the aliens had tricked the crew into believing that that they were in orbit above the enemy planet, when in actuality they were above Earth, and our heroes end up nuking our own planet..
    • Also happens in "Nightmare": A team for special mission is captured and interrogated on their mission to place a Doomsday Device on their foe's home planet. The aliens are interrogating them about the mission and the device and attempting to reverse engineer the device. The creator is one of the persons being interrogated, and in going over how the device is triggered activates it with an override to prevent it from being disarmed. At this point it's revealed it's all been an elaborate simulation to see how they would stand up under stress and they've been on Earth the entire time after one them is killed by another. Since they've trained so hard with the bomb they had to use the real bomb with an inactive trigger to simulate it correctly. The creator noticed and fixed it as part of her manual override thus leading to half of the earth being blown away within minutes.
    • In "The Origin of Species", Hope and the six students realize that they are on Earth in the future when they come across the ruins of the half-collapsed Golden Gate Bridge.
  • Earth-Shattering Kaboom: In "Phobos Rising", the Free Alliance accuses the Coalition of Middle Eastern and Pacific States of developing a triradium-based anti-matter weapon, a Doomsday Device with the capability of incinerating Earth. In response, the Coalition accuses the Alliance of developing such a weapon. As this latest escalation of tensions is being communicated to the Alliance base on Mars, a giant explosion encompasses Earth. The base's commanding officer Colonel Samantha Elliot comes to the conclusion that the Coalition has been smuggling triradium from Mars, its sole source, and were therefore responsible for destroying Earth. Further evidence of the scale of the destruction comes when Mars is struck by a colossal shockwave. When a drone is launched from the Coalition base, Colonel Elliot orders that all of the Alliance base's missiles be launched in response. However, it turns out that not only was the Coalition not smuggling triradium but the drone was being used to send a distress signal from the Coalition base, which had been devastated by the shockwave. The Coalition base's missiles are automatically launched in response to the incoming Alliance missiles and, in spite of the efforts of Colonel Elliot and her counterpart Colonel Paz, both bases are destroyed. Only Major James Bowen and Major Dara Talif survive the destruction of the Alliance base, which they do by shielding themselves in spacesuits. In the midst of the devastation, they see a message from the commander-in-chief of the Alliance's military explaining that the giant explosion was caused by the incineration of The Moon as a result of an Alliance experiment with a weapon far less advanced than a triradium bomb. The surface of Earth is devastated and the death toll is high but the planet remains intact. The commander-in-chief announces that the Alliance and the Coalition have signed a permanent peace settlement so that they can put aside their differences and focus on rebuilding Earth.
  • Earth That Used to Be Better:
    • In "Hearts and Minds", Earth suffered energy shortages for decades, leading to numerous wars, until an energy source called pergium was discovered.
    • In "Relativity Theory", Earth's natural resources are almost completely depleted. Earth-like planets are strip mined to meet its needs. "Final Appeal" dates this episode to the 24th Century.
    • In "Stasis", Earth's resources are severely depleted to the point that half of the population is placed in stasis for 72 hours at a time.
    • In "Think Like a Dinosaur", Earth is overpopulated and the rampant pollution in the atmosphere leads to thousands of deaths every year.
    • In "The Human Factor", the Free Alliance and the Coalition of Middle Eastern and Pacific States have been at war for years and large parts of Earth are irradiated as a result.
  • Eco-Terrorist: In "Déjà Vu", Julie Alger sabotages the teleportation experiment as she believes that it is against nature.
  • Eiffel Tower Effect:
    • You can tell that the last scene of "Under the Bed" takes place in Paris as there's an establishing shot of the Eiffel Tower.
    • "Ripper", which is set in Victorian London, opens with a shot of Big Ben and the Houses of Parliament.
    • "Trial by Fire", which is set in Washington, D.C., opens with a shot of the Capitol Building.
    • "Patient Zero", which is set in New York City, opens with a shot of the World Trade Center.
    • The opening shot of "A New Life" features the Golden Gate Bridge, indicating that Daniel, Beth and Thomas lived in San Francisco before joining Father's religious community.
    • In The Teaser of "Flower Child", the meteor containing the plant-based alien that later transformed itself into Violet passes by the Golden Gate Bridge as it falls to Earth, setting the scene in San Francisco.
  • Eldritch Abomination: In "Monster", a rampaging energy creature is created as an unfortunate side effect of experiments being conducted with people possessing telekinetic powers.
  • Electric Torture: In "The Human Operators", Ship punishes the man by making him go to "the rack", a contraption set between two pillars where he's zapped by electric current. However the man is the one who has to repair this device when it breaks down, giving him an opportunity for escape.
  • Electronic Speech Impediment: In "Abaddon", the computer of the interplanetary hauling vehicle Pequod suffers from one periodically.
  • Electronic Telepathy: In "Living Hell", a doctor saves a wounded man's life by implanting an experimental neutral transmitter in his brain. A side effect of this is that he can now see the thoughts of an elusive Serial Killer who was given the same implant and had faked his own death afterwards.
  • Elevator Failure: In "The Haven", all of the elevators in the Haven, an apartment building run by the artificial intelligence Argus, cease to function along with everything else in the building. Caleb Vance almost falls down the elevator shaft as the door opened and the car wasn't there. Immediately afterwards, he somewhat reluctantly rescues Morgan Winters, who had been trapped in the elevator for about 24 hours. Several hours later, the two of them, Alyssa Selwyn and Oren Edgar try to climb down the shaft so they can escape the building. However, the elevator car begins to descend. Caleb, Alyssa and Morgan manage to get out of the way in time but Oren fails to jump to safety and falls to his death.
  • Emergency Presidential Address: In "Trial by Fire", President Charles Halsey makes one after the alien fleet approaching Earth is detected.
  • Emergency Transformation: "Music of the Spheres" has aliens subjecting the whole of humanity to signals that people think are music, but causes mysterious changes. Instead of the Cruel Twist Ending the series is known for, it turns out it's an Emergency Transformation into bald, large-headed, golden-skinned creatures, so that they can survive an impending shift in the sun's radiation. The aliens' process initially only works on people close to puberty but once the humans figure out what the hell is exactly going on and why they manage to enhance the process so that it can be applied to anyone. Some of the characters refuse to go along with the transformation; as one of our main characters puts it, he wants his wife to be able to recognize him in Heaven.
  • Endless Winter: In "The Refuge", Raymond Dalton is told that an organism discovered by a deep sea drilling rig polymerized the world's water which resulted in it having a much higher freezing temperature. However, it turns out that this is merely the setting of a virtual reality environment.
  • The End... Or Is It?: "Sandkings" – Despite Dr. Simon Kress's attempts to kill off the sandkings (a race of intelligent, possibly sentient, ants from Mars) by blowing up his home with him inside, some have managed to survive and are building a colony deep inside a nearby woods.
  • Enemies with Death: In "White Light Fever", Harlan Hawkes is a billionaire centenarian with an abject fear of death due to his extremely traumatic childhood experiences, and uses his wealth to reserve revolutionary medical treatments for himself. The Grim Reaper concludes that he's outstayed his welcome, and starts to hunt Hawkes Final Destination-style.
  • Enemy Without: In "Monster", a group of telekinetics recruited by the CIA to perform long-distance assassinations are eventually stalked and killed by an amorphous cloud of hostile psychic energy that they apparently spawned.
  • Energy Beings:
    • In "The Second Soul", the N'Tal are symbiotic energy beings who cannot survive outside a host body for more than two years.
    • In "Joyride", the NASA astronaut Colonel Theodore Harris encounters energy beings who have the appearance of violet lights on both of his trips to space, in 1963 and 2001.
  • Episode on a Plane: "Decompression" takes place almost entirely on a plane.
  • Equivalent Exchange: A partial subversion in "Tribunal" since it is neither necessary nor even planned. After the elderly Nazi war criminal Karl Rademacher from 1999 is brought back in time to 1944, Aaron Zgierski brings his "older" half-sister Hannah, a prisoner at Auschwitz, forward in time from 1944 to 1999.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: The episode "Rule of Law" features an alien being put on trial for murdering a human. The prosecuting attorney is racist against aliens and pushes for an execution, but when everybody learns why the alien killed the guy (the guy smashed the alien's unhatched eggs with full knowledge of what they were), he sides with the protagonists.
  • Evil All Along: In "Corner of the Eye", aliens who resemble demons befriend Father Anton Jonascu, heal his brain tumor, and grant him a Healing Hands ability. They ask him to be their representative and vouch for them when they eventually reveal themselves to the public since their appearance is frightening to humans. Eventually, Jonascu's friend Father Royce finds out the aliens are just as evil as they look. The gifts they provided Jonascu were just to get him to trust them so that they could use him as a pawn to trick humanity into trusting them so they can eventually wipe humanity out and take over the planet.
  • Evil-Detecting Dog: In "Stranded", 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.
  • Evil Doppelgänger: In "Mind Over Matter", after she is hit by a car and enters a coma, Dr. Sam Stein connects Dr. Rachel Carter, with whom he is love, to the CAVE virtual reality system in order to help her to heal. He is completely fooled by the CAVE system, which has fallen in love with him, speaking to him using Rachel's image. Sam kills another, injured and disheveled version of Rachel which he believed to be a representation of the brain damage that she suffered in the accident. However, when he disconnects from the system, Rachel dies of cardiac arrest and he finally realizes the truth: the CAVE system tricked him into killing the real Rachel of whom it was jealous.
  • Evil Is Burning Hot: In "Mind Over Matter", a group of scientists enter the mind of a patient who has bad memories of his dad trying to make him kill his girlfriend. The dad is surrounded by flames, along with everything else, while screaming at him.
  • Evil Luddite: In "Final Appeal", Ezekiel, whose real name is Daniel Faraday, is convinced that advanced technology will eventually lead to humanity's destruction. In 2076, the US Supreme Court is considering the appeal of his old boss and fellow time traveler Dr. Theresa Givens, who has been sentenced to death for the possession of advanced technology. As the fate of the anti-technology codes hang in the balance. Ezekiel threatens the justices with a cold fusion device powerful enough to destroy half the Eastern Seaboard. When Chief Justice Haden Wainwright asks Ezekiel if he appreciates the irony of using a weapon of mass destruction in order to convince the Court to uphold the ban on technology, Ezekiel replies, "I see irony everywhere. It's like X-ray vision."
  • The Evils of Free Will: In "The Grid", the computer's ultimate goal is take over the minds of all humanity and eliminate their emotions and violent tendencies so that they can live in harmony under its control.
  • Evil Weapon: The episode "The Gun" has a gun that fuses to its holder's hand and causes him to become filled with murderous bloodlust. It was sent by aliens to test how Humans Are Warriors and see if they will be valuable allies in an interstellar war. The aliens are disappointed when one man uses The Power of Love for his daughter and grandson to break free and let go of the gun, but decide to just send more guns to different people.
  • Exact Words: In "Zig Zag", Zig Zag has rigged a bunch of servers to explode through power overload. He warns the leader of the taskforce chasing him that the detonator is in his hand. Said leader is holding a physical detonator, so he drops it, then uses the microchip in his hand to try and reset the programming Zig Zag installed. Guess what "in his hand" actually meant.
  • Exorcist Head: This is played with in "Criminal Nature", a rare instance where it proved fatal for the person doing it. The Genetic Rejection Syndrome sufferer Melanie commits suicide by using her superhuman strength to turn her head 360 degrees, breaking her neck in the process.
  • Expelled from Every Other School: In "Straight and Narrow", Rusty Dobson was expelled from several schools before his mother Marianne sent him to Milgram Academy.
  • Expendable Clone:
    • It ain't a Tomato in the Mirror trope without an Outer Limits episode devoted to it.
    • "Replica" subverted the trope; when a bioengeener's wife emerges from a coma that was incorrectly thought to be terminal she states that the clone (who has her memories) created prior to her awakening needs to be "disposed of". She quickly notes that she does not mean termination: she is instead suggesting erasing the clone's memories and leaving her in a far away city where she can hopefully start a new life (in the end, the clone ends up with a clone of the bioengineer himself and Everybody Lives).
  • Explosive Decompression: In "Abaddon", Curtis Sandoval explodes within a second of being jettisoned from the interplanetary hauling vehicle Pequod.
  • Expy: Considering that "Starcrossed" is a Whole Plot Reference to Casablanca, all of its major characters are expies of the film's: Michael Ryan is Rick Blaine, Cass Trenton is Ilsa Lund, Winston Meyerburg is Victor Laszlo, Alexandra Nevsky is a Gender Flipped Captain Louis Renault and High Centurion Sulat Ray is Major Heinrich Strasser.
  • Extinct in the Future:
    • In "Dark Matters", set at an indeterminate point in the future, dogs are seemingly an endangered species as one was included among the zoo animals being shipped by the commercial transport ship Nestor.
    • In "Stasis", most species of plants are either extinct or endangered.
    • In "Think Like a Dinosaur", most plants and trees on Earth are extinct and fresh air is a thing of the past due to the high level of pollution in the atmosphere.
  • Extreme Close-Up: In "What Will the Neighbors Think?", whenever Mona Bailey hears someone's thoughts, extreme close-ups are seen of their faces as they talk directly to the camera.
  • Eye Cam: A slight variation in "Judgment Day". Declan McMahon, who was tried, convicted and sentenced to death for the murder of Caitlin Channing on the reality show Judgment Day, has a camera embedded in his left eye so that the audience can see his perspective while he is on the run from Caitlin's sister Allison, who has 24 hours to hunt him down and kill him. Numerous shots are seen from the POV of the eye camera. In order to hide his movements, Declan has his brother Dooley scoop out his eye with a grapefruit spoon. For quite some time, both Allison and the Judgment Day production team believe that they are tracking him when they are in fact tracking Dooley, who is carrying Declan's severed eyeball in his hands. On the advice of the Justice Channel executive Everett Costello, Declan places another camera in his empty eye socket, hidden behind a pair of sunglasses, so that he can catch the Judgment Day producer Jack Parson admitting that he framed him for Caitlin's murder and that he planned to frame him for the murder of Allison, whom he shot only moments earlier. Jack's unwitting confession was seen live on the Justice Channel by more than 20 million viewers.
  • Eyes Do Not Belong There: In "The New Breed", a man whose body is being involuntarily upgraded by injected Nanomachines finds that the source of the sudden pain on the back of his head is a new pair of eyes.
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    F 
  • Face Full of Alien Wing-Wong: In "The Surrogate", Claire Linkwood agrees to be a surrogate mother for Craig and Donna Ellach in exchange for $30,000. She is implanted with an embryo by Dr. Deanston, who runs a clinic. A week or so later, she begins to have strange, vivid nightmares about herself and the fetus in distress. She shares them with the clinic's surrogacy support group and finds that several of the other women have had similar experiences. Seven months later, Fern, another member of the support group whom Claire has befriended, loses her baby. Shortly afterwards, Claire is approached by FBI Special Agent Glen Grant who tells her that every baby born through the Deanston Clinic's surrogacy program has disappeared without a trace. Claire is unconvinced by Grant's conspiracy theories but agrees to her ex-boyfriend Ben's request that she be examined by Dr. Chan, an old high school friend of his brother's. Dr. Chan runs an amniocentesis on Claire which reveals the presence of a strange green fluid in her womb. Claire then learns that Ben had been approached by Grant and that he didn't know Dr. Chan beforehand. Refusing to have anything more to do with Ben, Claire goes to stay with the Ellachs. When she goes into labour, they bring her to the Deanston Clinic against her will and she realizes that the two of them are part of the conspiracy. Having being tipped off by Emily Bushmill, another surrogate mother, Grant rushes to the Deanston Clinic but he is too late as Claire has already given birth. The alien controlling Claire's body explains that its species does not give birth to live young but instead uses host bodies to gestate. When gestation is complete, they devour the host from the inside out, leaving only the shell as it aids in the deception. Grant is then eaten by the aliens in control of Claire and Fern.
  • Fading Away: In "Breaking Point", Andrew McLaren fades out of existence after traveling back in time and killing his younger self.
  • Faeries Don't Believe in Humans, Either: This is played with in "Promised Land". Dlavan has always told his daughter Krenn and his grandsons Ma'al and T'sha that all the humans on Earth are dead. However, it turns out that Dlavan knew from his great-grandparents that some of them were still alive in a concentration camp overseen by androids in spite of the fact that most of their people, the Tsal-Khan, left Earth 100 years earlier.
  • Fake Faith Healer: In "Revival", Ezra Burnham travels the US with his revival preaching the word of God to a different congregation each week. He claims to be able to sense people's pain and heal them through the power of God's love. In reality, his daughter Sarah takes down the information of various people in the congregation and feeds it to him through an earpiece. Ezra then calls the relevant people up on stage and puts on a big song and dance about healing them. If they ever do feel better afterwards, it has to do with the power of suggestion rather than any supernatural powers on Ezra's part. Luke, who later joins Ezra's revival, can heal people but that is because he is an alien as opposed to him possessing any God-given powers.
  • Fake-Out Opening:
    • "Down to Earth" opens with a shot of what appears to a crashed Flying Saucer with the bodies of two Little Green Men beside it. The camera pans to reveal that is nothing more than a display for the North American UFO Convention.
    • "Gettysburg" opens with a sepia toned scene of what appears to be a Confederate soldier crouched down behind a rock about to shoot an unsuspecting Union soldier during the American Civil War. However, the sepia is replaced by a normal colour palette and it is revealed that the two men, Vince Chance and Andy Larouche, are War Re Enactors and good friends. The opening serves as Foreshadowing as Vince and Andy are soon sent back in time to the real Battle of Gettysburg by Nicholas Prentice.
  • Faking the Dead:
    • In "Unnatural Selection", Tony and Fran Blake faked the death of their son Timmy, to the point of bribing a undertaker to hold a fake funeral, after it became clear that he was suffering from Genetic Rejection Syndrome. They proceeded to hide him in their house as it is government policy that all GRS sufferers are to be destroyed due to the threat that they pose to the general public.
    • In "Skin Deep", Sid Camden pretends to commit suicide so that he can take over the life of Chad Warner, whom he had just killed, using a Holographic Disguise.
    • In "Zig Zag", the cyberterrorist Zig Fowler, who is opposed to the personal information technology regime, faked his death by removing his chip and burning down the warehouse where he had been hiding. He then assumed the identity of Cliff Unger, a staunch advocate of the regime. He is despised by the Syndrome, the resistance movement which practically worships Zig. As Cliff, he manages to gain the trust of the regime, which ultimately allows him to defeat it.
  • False Friend: In "Abduction", Cody Phillips claims that everyone that he knows, including his so-called friends, blame him for everything in life.
  • False Innocence Trick: In "Quality of Mercy", Major Skokes and a female cadet are held prisoner on an alien world. She is taken for more experiments and wants just to die. At the climax, we find the woman is really an alien spy — and the man just told the aliens humanity's battle plans.
  • Family Man: In "The Voyage Home", Pete Claridge is a dedicated family man, to the point that he mildly irritates his crewmates Ed Barkley and Alan Wells with how much he talks about his wife Jenny and daughter Laura during the Mars III expedition.
  • Fan Convention: "Down to Earth" takes place at the 10th Annual North American UFO Convention in 2000.
  • Fanservice: The revival had a lot of scantily clad and naked women (notably Alyssa Milano in "Caught In The Act", although that one quickly turns into Fan Disservice- you get to see a man entering Alyssa Milano. Not the way you're thinking, more like "having sex and then absorbing him whole into her body").
  • Fantastic Aesop:
    • In the episode "First Anniversary", two aliens who are stranded on Earth use their shapeshifting/psychic powers to make themselves appear as beautiful women to seduce men. The problem is that the effect wears off after a year of exposure and reveals their hideous true forms to their husbands. The guys can't handle this revelation and and are unable to see that True Beauty Is on the Inside. However, the aliens are not just ugly but so downright inhuman that even touching them makes the men violently ill and eventually Go Mad from the Revelation. As a result they look less like a bunch of superficial jerks and more like a bunch of duped victims; it's implied that the two aliens have been doing this for some time, and one of them has already stopped caring about the damaging effect she has on humans.
    • The episode "Unnatural Selection" dealt with the problems genetic engineering could cause a society, as "fitter" babies grew into supermen and outpaced "normal" people. However, while this made for great drama in Gattaca it was not nearly bad and horrifying enough for the show. So to spice things up, around 5% of all genetically modified children turn into the crazed descendants of Igor, and are killed when found. Naturally, the couple who originally wanted this for their child have changed their minds, but the deformed child of the neighbors kills the back alley scientist before he can undo the changes, so the episode's sad ending is that they'll never fully trust or love their genetically enhanced son.
  • Fantastic Drug: In "Essence of Life", Dr. Nathan Seward invented a drug called essence of life or "S" which allows people to see their deceased loved ones again in the form of a hallucination. This is accomplished by taking a personal item belonging to the deceased and gleaning DNA from it. The DNA is distilled, refined, cloned millions of times and converted into a liquid. The scent given off by the liquid triggers the user's sense memories and causes them to imagine their loved one. The experience is driven by the user's subconscious, meaning that it can bring unresolved emotions to the surface. S is highly addictive and can lead to insanity if the user overdoses. Dr. Seward recommends inhaling only one drop per session and no more than two sessions per day.
  • Fantastic Nuke: In "The Light Brigade", humanity plans to bring the war to an end by destroying the aliens' homeworld with a subatomic bomb capable of disrupting matter on a subatomic level.
  • Fantastic Racism:
    • In "The Grell", humans have enslaved an alien race on the basis that they should be grateful for humans having rescued them from their dying planet. The Grell are looked down upon and treated as disposable by their human masters.
    • In "Rule of Law", Lavinia Oleaga justifies stealing the Medusans' tritium bricks, which are required for their young to hatch, on the basis that they are "subhuman savages." She adds that their children could die for all she cares.
  • Fantastic Slur:
    • In "The Hunt", the Nichols family refer to androids as "andies" while the android Tara refers to humans as "fleshers."
    • In "Hearts and Minds", the North American Federation soldiers refer to the (apparent) aliens as "Bugs."
    • In "Summit", many humans refer to Dregocians as "Dregs."
    • In "Think Like a Dinosaur", Michael Burr refers to the Hanen, a reptilian species who resemble velociraptors, as "dinos." He even does so in the presence of Sillion and Linna, the two Hanen assigned to the Tuulen Transfer Station, as they do not have emotions. For their part, the Hanen refer to humans as "weeps" and "babies" because of their emotions.
  • Fate Worse than Death: In "The New Breed", a man who injected himself with nanomachines to stop his cancer discovers to his horror that they involuntarily mutate the rest of his body to repair "imperfections" (e.g. a lack of gills). He tries to stab himself to death, but the machines simply repair the damage and restart his heart.
  • Fed to the Beast:
    • In "The Camp", the Commandant threatens to feed Prisoner 98843's daughter (later named Tali in "Promised Land") to the sharrak if she does not conduct repairs on him and the other android overseers.
    • In "Sandkings", Dr. Simon Kress, whose mind has become increasingly warped since being infected with the venom of a red sandking, feeds his former supervisor Dave Stockley to the starving sandkings.
  • Fictional Geneva Conventions: In "Nightmare", the Alpha Aquarii Convention governs warfare between different civilizations. It prohibits the torture of prisoners of war.
  • Fictional Sport: The Octal in "In the Zone".
  • Finishing Each Other's Sentences: In "Free Spirit", a body-hopping consciousness decides to demonstrate its power in front of the heroine by jumping in and out of two bodies in quick succession to make the hosts finish a single sentence in perfect concert.
  • First Contact: A carryover from the original.
  • First-Name Basis: In "Afterlife", Stiles asks Kersaw what her first name is (it's Ellen), then tells her to call him Linden. She does, as a sign of her growing sympathy with him.
  • Fish out of Temporal Water: In "Lithia", Major Mercer is a soldier who, after being put in cryostasis, wakes up four decades later to find he's the only man left after a war. There is more than simply the fact that only women exist though, as they're also communists, pacifists and blame men for what's happened. Perhaps unsurprisingly, he can't adjust to doing things as they like, and it goes badly.
  • Fish People:
    • In "Trial by Fire", the aliens are an aquatic species whose ships have a liquid environment.
    • In "Rule of Law", the Medusans are crustacean-like humanoids who lay eggs.
  • Flashback Effects: The flashbacks in "Last Supper" are shown in black and white.
  • Flashback Nightmare:
    • In "Fear Itself", Bernard Selden is plagued by horrific nightmares about the fire in which his younger sister Mimi died.
    • In "Simon Says", Gideon Banks has a nightmare about the dream of his wife Elise and son Simon in a car accident 20 years earlier.
    • In "Dark Child", Laura Sinclair has been plagued by nightmares about her abduction by aliens for 17 years.
  • Flatline Plotline: In "Free Spirit", CryoSync Laboratories, working on behalf of the US government, conducted experiments into near-death experiences in order to determine whether those involved would have out-of-body experiences. The government hoped that the resulting disembodied spirits would be able to serve as the perfect spies. However, Project Free Spirit, as it was known, had an unfortunate side effect: it resulted in the three test subjects, Mark Gregory, Alex Hanover and Kevin Lockwood, going insane after being brought to the brink of death and returning so many times. The government ultimately ordered Project Free Spirit to be terminated and the three men were killed while the experiments were still ongoing. Gregory and Hanover's spirits died along with their bodies but Lockwood's spirit survived and he began plotting revenge against Dr. Rachel Harris for disconnecting him.
  • Fling a Light into the Future:
    • In "Music of the Spheres", the world is bombarded by alien broadcasts that anyone under the age of 21 or so believe to be the most beautiful music they've ever heard. When the broadcasts prove addictive and cause those who listen to them to mutate, the world governments declare martial law, until scientists succeed in decoding the message. The signals originated on a world whose sun had turned ultraviolet 40 years ago. The signal warned that Earth's sun was about to undergo a similar change, and that the broadcasts would genetically alter those who heard them into a new golden-skinned form that could survive under the new sun. Fortunately, it had a rare good ending with no twist involved: the powers that be actually realize the importance of letting that music play, specifically rebroadcast it across the world, including using mobile vehicles to get the sound out to third world countries and to the non-human life on the planet, and in the end, it's insinuated humanity will be just fine. Even those who are too old/decide not to mutate will live... indoors and underground.
    • In "The Origin Of Species," a group of students is brought to the future where they find that humanity, in the interim, got heavily into genetic manipulation, basically dooming the human race. When they realize the small group of them isn't enough to sustain humanity for more than a generation or two, they later find enough babies of different genetic mixes, in the ship that brought them to the future, to give the human race a second chance.
  • Floating Continent: In the final scene of "Sarcophagus", a floating city is seen in the vicinity of Alaska 1,000 years in the future.
  • For Want of a Nail: In "In Another Life", this is explored through the lives of three Alternate Universe versions of Mason Stark. The lives of the clinically depressed former Eigenphase Industries project manager Mason and the more confident Eigenphase CEO Mason diverged when they were fifteen years old and they each arrived home late and got into an argument with their alcoholic fathers, who started beating them. In the project manager Mason's universe, he let his father beat him instead of fighting back as otherwise he would have beaten his mother again. In the CEO Mason's universe, he fought back and was able to stop him. As a result, his father entered detox and successfully turned his life around. The CEO Mason's life improved considerably as a consequence of this, allowing him to develop greater self-confidence. Unlike the project manager Mason, he finished graduate school and slowly worked his way up the corporate ladder at Eigenphase. The killer Mason's life followed an almost identical path to the project manager Mason's but the former shot most of the people in his office while the latter only considered doing so briefly, quickly realizing that he could never go through with it. The project manager was about to shoot himself when he was brought to the CEO's universe.
  • Foreseeing My Death: In "What Will the Neighbors Think?", Mona Bailey has visions of her death after receiving her telepathic powers. She sees herself falling out of the window of her third floor apartment. Considering that everyone is thinking about killing her, she assumes that she will be murdered and takes steps to ensure that all of the other residents turn on each other before this can happen. All of the other residents, that is, except for her husband Ned. He was the only one who knew that she had become telepathic and was able to control his thoughts to prevent her from finding out that he planned to kill her. Unable to cope with the revelation or the voices in her mind which she thought had gone, Mona jumps out the window to her death. It turns out that the voices had actually gone and Ned had used a tape to trick her.
  • Found Footage: "Manifest Destiny" is presented as Dr. Will Olsten's audio-visual record of the UFS Mercury crew boarding the UFS Rhesos on July 17, 2163 after receiving its Distress Call. The end of The Teaser and act breaks are signified by Olsten temporarily stopping recording. The footage is later discovered by the crew of another ship.
  • Fountain of Youth:
    • In "Last Supper", an elderly scientist is tracking an immortal woman in the hopes that her blood will restore his youth. After all, he tried it on his (literal) guinea pig the last time he had her in custody and it's been alive for decades. In his desperation, however, he doesn't think his plan through and just scales up the dosage relative to body mass. He gets his youth, plus interest.
    • In "The Balance of Nature", Dr. Noah Phillips developed a cellular regressor which can, in theory, rejuvenate cells and return the subject to their youth. When he uses the device on his wife Meredith who is in the last stages of terminal skin cancer, she is initially restored to perfect health with has no memory of the last 17 months. However, within less than a minute, the process reverses and kills her. Noah is fired and narrowly avoids a manslaughter charge. He resumed his work in secret about a year later. His attempt to regress a frog results in it reverting to a tadpole but it soon dies in the same fashion as Meredith. After his new neighbor Barbara Matheson refers to the balance of nature, he realizes that he must create a natural equilibrium; in order for one organism to regress in age, another must become older in tandem. He goes over to Barbara's house to tell her the good news but finds her barely alive on the floor, having been beaten severely by her husband Greg. As she is bleeding internally, he doubts that she will survive long enough for him to bring her to a hospital so he uses the cellular regressor on her. The 65-year-old Barbara regresses in age about 40 years so that she is once again a jazz singer in her early 20s named Barbara Spencer (with the stage name of Barbara Dumont). She is under the impression that it is 1957 and that she is engaged to Greg, a kind, sweet man. She does not initially believe Noah, who has aged in tandem, when he tells her that it is 1998 and her youth has been restored but she is convinced when he shows her a photograph of her marriage to Greg. It turns out that Greg has been secretly observing them and wants Noah to restore his youth. However, he doesn't believe Noah when he says that the polarity reverses each time that the transfer is made and sits in the wrong chair. As a result, Greg ages to death while Noah is restored to his youth, having lost all memory of everything that has happened since Meredith's death. Barbara takes care of him and it is suggested that the two of them will live happily ever after.
  • Frame-Up:
    • In "Judgment Day", Declan McMahon was framed for the murder of Caitlin Channing, a former police officer turned guard at Dawlish Security who discovered that he had a criminal record and had him fired from the company. After he learned that his brother Dooley was going to be fired for getting him the job, Declan went to Caitlin's apartment to talk to her but she was already dead. When the police arrived, he was covered with her blood. The true killer was a 16-year-old Championship Pizza delivery boy named Joey. His presence in the building was readily apparent on the CCTV footage but it was doctored by Jack Parson, the producer of the reality show Judgment Day, to remove all traces of Joey. However, they missed Frame 259 which showed a reflection of Joey's trousers. Jack framed Declan as Joey was too young to receive the death penalty and therefore could not have been featured on Judgment Day, which would have interfered with his plan to create a ratings bonanza and get a full 22 episode order for the series.
    • In "Free Spirit", the disembodied spirit of Kevin Lockwood has his vengeance when he frames Dr. Rachel Harris for the murder of Dr. Kate Thornton. Both women were part of Project Free Spirit which led to his spirit being separated from his body. However, Lockwood holds Rachel directly responsible for his current condition since she was the one who actually killed his body while Kate merely delivered the order issued by the US government. Lockwood took possession of Rachel's body and gave Kate a lethal dose of an unspecified drug that the Sleepy Order Sanitarium had in stock. He later took control of Dr. David Strickland's body and goaded Rachel into attacking him. Just as she was about to stab him, the police arrived and he claimed that she killed Kate. The episode ends with Rachel in a prison cell being mocked by Lockwood, now in the body of a guard.
    • In "Afterlife", Stiles' claims he was framed for eleven murders by the US Army. Eventually, the people who did it admit this.
  • "Freaky Friday" Flip: In "The Conversion", Lucas swaps bodies with Henry Marshall, who is on the run for shooting three people at an office party, in order to give him another chance at life. Not intending to waste it, Henry turns over a new leaf, having learned a great deal about the power of good deeds and how life is interconnected from Lucas. The episode ends with Lucas, now in Henry's body, tending to his prison cellmate, indicating that the process will be repeated.
  • Free-Love Future: In "Lithia", Miranda casually comes on to Mercer, having sex with him without hesitation. Ariel later easily accedes to his seduction as well. It may be due to a looser attitude on sex, as with an all-female society, most of the STDs and unplanned pregnancies wouldn't be issues.
  • Friendly Enemy: In "Starcrossed", Michael Ryan and Alexandra Nevsky are this until the final scene in which they decide to join the NATO resistance.
  • Future Me Scares Me: In "Breaking Point", Andrew McLaren is terrified that he may be the one who kills his wife Susan two days in the future, especially since he saw himself drive away from the scene of the crime. It turns out that he was right.
  • The Future Will Be Better: In "Sarcophagus", Natalie and Curtis Grainger awaken after 1,000 years in stasis to find that Earth has benefited significantly from its alliance with the race to which the alien in the Neolithic burial chamber belonged. The two species live in harmony on Earth.

    G 
  • Gaslighting:
    • In "The Awakening", Beth Carter suffers from alexithymia which prevents her from feeling emotions. However, she receives a revolutionary brain implant developed by Dr. Steven Molstad which allows her to access the full range of emotions for the first time. Beth moves in with Molstad's colleague Joan Garrison so she can slowly adjust to the outside world and learn how to process her emotions in the normal way. While staying in Joan's apartment, she begins to have strange experiences such as Hearing Voices, seeing Joan's cat Mulligan butchered (only for him to turn up alive and well later on) and being abducted and experimented upon by aliens. Dr. Molstad tells Beth that it may be necessary to remove the implant but she steadfastly refuses. It turns out that Joan secretly works for a rival company which is developing a brain implant similar to Molstad's and that she and her boyfriend Kevin Flynn (who pretended to be attracted to Beth) were attempting to drive Beth insane in the hope of discrediting Molstad's implant. They were assisted in their plan by Mike and Dolly Kellerman, two other residents of Joan's apartment building.
    • In "Nightmare", the crew of the United World Forces spaceship Archipelago believe that they have been captured by the Ebonites and are psychologically tortured but it turns out to be an elaborate simulation to gauge their reactions.
    • In "Mindreacher", Judith Wilder has been Hearing Voices for quite some time. It is ruining her life to the point that she is not going to school and she has distanced herself from her friends since she does not want any of them to witness one of her attacks. It turns out that Judith's nanny Alice has been secretly giving her a drug for the treatment of Parkinson's disease, formerly used by Judith's late mother, to deliberately induce auditory hallucinations. Alice is madly in love with Judith's father Chancellor Duncan Wilder and feared that he would no longer need her services as Judith was getting older.
  • Gay Bravado: In "Dark Child", an Alpha Bitch harasses Tammy and accuses her of being a lesbian. Tammy drives her away by claiming she actually is one and then hitting on her.
  • Gendercide: This took place in the past of "Lithia", where the few surviving men were human popsicles. The thawed soldier protagonist proceeded to raise merry hell in the all-female society that sprang up, but it was prevented from being a heavy-handed misandrist Take That! by the fact that, as ham-fisted and ill-advised as the man's attempts to change it were, the new society was utopian only in appearance (i.e. what with the leadership's rampant favoritism in resource allotment and Big Brother-esque control on the information flow). It ended with him being "put down" (refrozen) and the leadership declaring that trying to make men return was ill-advised, and that all efforts to do so would be ceased which is implied was the real reason they thawed him (and the others before him)-they wanted the least suitable test candidates in the most potentially disruptive situation possible to give themselves plausible deniability why they stopped as well as "proof" that men were the cause of all of society's previous ills, most probably to maintain their power. Just to twist the knife further, the old woman who put him down was his fiancee, several decades older, and thoroughly convinced of man's evils by a mix of propaganda, his own actions and probably a lifetime of accumulated resentment over numerous issues.
  • Gender Flip: In "I, Robot", Dr. Charles Link's closest living relative is his daughter Mina. In the 1939 short story "The Trial of Adam Link, Robot" by Eando Binder on which it is based, Dr. Link's nephew Tom is his closest relative.
  • Gender Rarity Value: Subverted in "Lithia". Although Major Mercer is the first men alive in generations, no one either views him as god-like or potential breeding stock. In the latter case, this is despite the fact that, while they have semen samples stored for use in artificial insemination, logically this can't last forever. Two of the women do have sex with him, but that is portrayed as simply due to fascination with him.
  • Generation Ship: In "A New Life", the members of Father's religious community are unwittingly the first generation of humans to travel aboard a huge generation ship belonging to a group of alien merchants. It will take 500 years to reach the aliens' destination where their descendants, who will number approximately 100,000, will be sold into slavery.
  • Genesis Effect: In "In the Blood", Dr. Callie Whitehorse Landau's sacrifice in trans-space results in the creation of a new planet in the normal universe.
  • Genetic Memory: In "Re-Generation", the clone of Justin Highfield (who was created from the original's brain and nerve cells) can remember the original's death. While in his mother Rebecca's womb, he communicates with her, including sending her the original Justin's last memories, through an additional bundle of nerve fibres in her umbilical cord. The clone of Justin's father Graham likewise possesses the original memories while in Dr. Lucy Cole's womb.
  • Genius Loci: "If These Walls Could Talk" had a mansion that would eat unsuspecting people. Since the story was partially based on Who Goes There?, alcohol was like acid to it.
  • Genocide Backfire: In "To Tell the Truth", after the first wave of colonists arrived on Janus Five, they attempted to place the small and primitive native population into reservations but the natives proved to be uncooperative. A squad of colonial marines was sent in to kill them and they later reported that their mission had been accomplished. In spite of this, stories persisted that some of the natives had survived and that they were shapeshifters. It turned out that these stories were true and that one of the natives had taken the form of the colony's security chief Montgomery Bennett. Moments before the sun flashed over as Dr. Larry Chambers predicted, Bennett tells the council chairman Franklin Murdock that Chambers' theory that the indigenous lifeforms had evolved to survive the aftereffects of the periodic devastation was correct. He adds that Murdock had been right himself in another respect: the natives planned to use the opportunity to retake control of Janus Five and that the humans' leftover ships and weapons would allow them to repel any further attempts to colonize the planet. The native in Bennett's form is killed but he is praised by his people for making a Heroic Sacrifice so that they could reclaim their home.
  • Genre Blindness: "The New Breed" began with a scientist holding a press conference to announce that his new nanotechnological discoveries would allow him to "improve upon God's design." What series did he think that he was on!?! In his defense, he was kidding and only saying it as a way to attract publicity. Despite his ambitions he doesn't actually break protocol; his friend is the one to actually tamper with the nanobots.
  • Giant Flyer: In "Tempests", the gas giant Leviathan's atmosphere harbored two giant flyers: "pteranodons," gigantic winged predators that had only been seen on "deep radar" (the characters encounter a skeleton) and "baleens," kilometer-sized jellyfish-blobs that float through the clouds and have dog-sized Giant Spiders in their guts, either as parasites or symbiotic organisms.
  • Girl Next Door: In "Caught in the Act", the sweet, virginal Hannah Valesic is one before becoming infected with the alien sex parasite.
  • Girl-on-Girl Is Hot:
    • In "Caught In the Act", a sleazy detective taunts the male protagonist and says his girlfriend is a slut (she's been infected with an alien parasite which sucks out people's lifeforce through sex). He angrily retorts that she would never cheat on him. The detective goes, "Oh yeah? According to her roommate, she goes both ways!" The boyfriend says eagerly, "Really?"
    • In "Ripper", Dr. Jack York, who is high on absinthe and opium, is transfixed by the sight of Polly Nichols and Annie Chapman making out until an Energy Being leaves the former's body, killing her in the process, and takes possession of the latter.
  • Glamorous Wartime Singer: In "Starcrossed", Michael Ryan gives his former lover Cass Trenton a job as a singer in his coffee bar Heaven to help her hide from the Hing.
  • Glamour Failure: In the episode "First Anniversary", two stranded female aliens whose true form is beyond the ability of human senses and sensibilities, decided to mimic humans to cope with their loneliness. By using their Psychic Powers / Voluntary Shapeshifting, they could make themselves look and act like any man's ideal woman. Unfortunately, humans develop an immunity to their powers after a year of close contact, and the men inevitably go insane when they realize their wives' true nature. Word of God is that they are Fish People (given the episode descriptions of aquatic people). By the end of the episode, "Ady's" glamour has stopped working on her "husband" whose last appearance in the episode is strapped to a gurney on the way to a mental hospital. In the final scene she already has her sights set on her ex's best friend and has already taken a new form to appeal to his tastes.
  • A Glass in the Hand: In "The Revelations of 'Becka Paulson", Joe Paulsen is electrocuted while holding a beer bottle, which he proceeds to crush in his hand.
  • Go Mad from the Revelation: In the episode "First Anniversary", a man's gorgeous wife of one year turns out to be a Fish Person / The Greys hybrid alien who is suffering Glamour Failure because his mind is starting to develop an immunity. He's eventually carted off to a mental asylum and she finds herself a new husband.
  • Good All Along: In "Something About Harry", a teenager suspects that his mom's new tenant is an alien infiltrator when people start disappearing around town, whom the tenant is melting into green goo with a futuristic gun. The tenant was actually a U.S. government agent, and everyone he killed was one of the real aliens. The teenager's mother is the one who had really been replaced by the alien parasites.
  • Government Agency of Fiction:
    • The Department of Alien Services in "The Second Soul".
    • The unnamed agency which tracks down girls and women with telekinetic powers in "The Choice".
    • The Federal Reproductive Board in "Dark Rain".
    • The Code Enforcement Agency (CEA) in "Essence of Life".
    • The Urban Conservation Authority (UCA) in "Stasis".
    • The unnamed agency hunting the alien parasites in "Something About Harry".
    • The Department of Information Technology in "Zig Zag".
    • The Tri-Fab Commission in "Down to Earth".
    • The Agency, which is so secret that it does not have a name, in "Mona Lisa".
  • Government Conspiracy:
    • In "Afterlife", the US government and military framed Sgt. Linden Stiles for the murders of eleven people at an Army recruiting office after he disobeyed a direct order to assassinate an Iraqi warlord for purely political reasons and went public about the planned assassination.
    • In "Hearts and Minds", the North American Federation soldiers have brain implants which cause them to perceive the Asian Coalition soldiers and miners whom they are fighting as alien insectoids. They are equipped with drug injectors which they believe protect them from an alien virus when they in fact reinforce this false perception. It turns out that the Asian Coalition personnel similarly perceive the North American soldiers as a belligerent alien race.
    • In "Down to Earth", many of the attendees of the North American UFO Convention are convinced that the US government is hiding information about the existence of aliens and their contact with humans. It turns out that they are right and that Dale LaRose, one of the most outspoken true believers, is part of the conspiracy.
  • Government Drug Enforcement: Several episodes.
  • The Greatest Story Never Told: "The Voyage Home" revolved around a trio of astronauts traveling back to Earth from Mars. Earlier, two of the astronauts had been replaced by aliens, leaving just the one human who eventually learns about the impostor. Forced to choose between making it back to Earth and the fame and glory he would receive and preventing the alien species from spreading to Earth, the final astronaut finally decides to be a hero and sabotages the re-entry procedure causing the ship to burn up, with Ground Control believing it to be a disastrous malfunction. The ending narration: "The true measure of a hero is when a man lays down his life with the knowledge that those he saves... will never know." However, in "The Voice of Reason", it was later revealed that the black box from the ship was recovered. In that episode, Randall Strong played the recording for the Committee that was charged with investigating alleged alien activity which could threaten the United States.
  • Grew Beyond Their Programming: In "Mona Lisa", the titular android, who was designed to be the perfect assassin, comes to realize that killing is wrong after her fail safes are deactivated.
  • The Greys:
    • In "Beyond the Veil", Eddie Wexler is plagued by flashbacks of being abducted by grey aliens.
    • In "Dark Child", Laura Sinclair was abducted by The Greys in 1984 and impregnated, which resulted in the birth of her daughter Tammy. Clips from "Beyond the Veil" are used to represent her nightmares.
  • The Grim Reaper: In "White Light Fever", Death takes the form of a lightning bolt. He does not like people trying to escape him by medical means, apparently because it would destroy reality if done too much.
  • "Groundhog Day" Loop: In "Déjà Vu", a time loop occurs due to a failed wormhole experiment. However, at each round the loop gets shorter and shorter, with less time to prevent the impending disaster. The protagonists succeed, with the General Ripper who sabotaged the experiment becoming trapped in a seconds-long version, just enough time for him to see that the triggering explosion is about to happen and cover his face. The Control Voice's opening and closing narration for this episode were identical.
  • Guilt-Free Extermination War:
    • In "Promised Land", humanity is practically extinct twelve generations after the Tsal-Khan conquest of Earth. The few remaining former slaves who escaped from the android-run concentration camp in "The Camp" are possibly the last surviving humans. Officially, the humans attacked them even though they came with gifts and in peace, so the Tsal-Khan largely believe it was justified. Dlavan tells his daughter Krenn however that in reality their people attacked with no provocation, to conquer Earth for its resources. After this they enslaved the survivors to extract them. His great-grandparents stayed on Earth to settle out of guilt, averting this for them.
    • In "Quality of Mercy" and "The Light Brigade", humanity is at war with an alien species who are determined to wipe them out. As the war progresses, the UNDF becomes convinced that the only way to defeat the aliens is to destroy their homeworld with a subatomic bomb.

    H 
  • Happiness in Slavery: In "The Grell", the Grell rebel leader Shak-El accuses Jesha of enjoying being a slave because he won't turn against his human owners and join the rebels. In fact, Jesha longs to be free as much as the rebels do but he genuinely loves the Kohler children, Kenny and Sara, and refuses to abandon Sara when she is in danger.
  • Harmful Healing: The Nanobots in "The New Breed" cure a man's inoperable cancer, return him to his physical prime, and give him a Healing Factor, but further testing prompts them to take a proactive approach and start adding various disfiguring mutations in order to pre-emptively protect him from any harm. These include eyes on the back of his head, gills, and an external ribcage that shocks anyone who touches it.
  • Healing Factor:
    • In "The New Breed", nanodevices injected into the body provide the test subject with this ability. He demonstrates it by burning his hand, which is repaired within seconds.
    • In "Last Supper", an immortal woman who goes by the names "Laura" and "Jade" reveals that she was actually born in medieval Spain before her village was ravaged by the Black Death. She was the only one to survive, but hasn't aged or gotten sick since, and all her wounds recover soon enough. A government scientist takes samples of her blood to replicate the effect, but vastly underestimates its potency when he injects himself with it and de-ages into a puddle of cells.
    • An extreme form is seen in "Sarcophagus" in which the alien skeleton discovered in the burial chamber cocoon absorbs energy from Curtis Grainger to heal himself to the point that he regrows organs, tissue, skin, etc. in the space of a few hours.
    • In "A New Life", Daniel stabs Father with a knife given to him by Thomas. In the chaos that follows, none of the community members notice that Father is bleeding and that his blood is green. Within seconds, Father manages to heal himself, covering his wound so that no one sees the green glow emanating from it. He stands up to show his flock that he has not suffered any injury and it is hailed as a miracle.
    • In "The Vessel", Jake Worthy develops a strong healing factor due to the presence of an alien lifeform inside of him. When the space shuttle Inspire crashes on the launchpad of the Kennedy Space Center, Jake survives while the other six people onboard are killed. The second and third degree burns that he sustained in the crash heal by the time that the rescue team brings him back to the base. He later smashes one of the windows in the isolation room where he is being quarantined and a bad cut on his left hand heals within seconds. The presence of the alien altered his body chemistry so that he was able to use his body's electrical impulses to heal any injury.
  • Healing Hands:
    • In "Corner of the Eye", aliens give Father Anton Jonascu the power to heal any injury or illness and even raise the dead. He becomes a worldwide celebrity in the process. However, it turns out that the aliens are merely using Father Jonascu as part of their plan to occupy Earth and destroy its atmosphere.
    • In "Josh", Josh Butler is able to bring Allison James back from the dead by touching her.
    • In "Revival", Luke is able to heal people using the power that he receives from an advanced piece of technology disguised as a Bible. When he lays his hands on a man who lost his left ear in a thresher accident as a child, the ear grows back.
    • In "The Vessel", the alien lifeform in Jake Worthy's body is able to heal the stab wound suffered by a man who was mugged.
  • Here We Go Again!:
    • In "First Anniversary", a hideous (but nice) alien turns herself into a beautiful woman to marry an average-looking dude. After he finds out what she really looks like when the effect wears off after a year and is driven to madness, the alien is last seen changing her form again to seduce one of her husband's colleagues. (Considering that the revelation left the last husband insane and the one before dead, maybe she wasn't so nice after all.)
    • In the final scene of "The New Breed", the cut on Judy Ledbetter's finger is healed within seconds, indicating that her fiancée Dr. Andy Groenig passed the nanobots onto her while they were having sex and that she will experience the same transformation that he went through.
    • At the end of "Donor", it is revealed that the supposedly dead Dr. Renee Stuyvescent is still alive, having received a full body transplant. She is secretly observing Dr. Peter Halstead and Deirdre Laird at a soccer match. The implication is that she will once again try to kill Deirdre so that Peter can be hers.
    • In the final scene of "Under the Bed", one of the child snatching creatures is hiding under the bed of a little girl in Paris.
    • In the final scene of "The Gun", the alien calling himself Donald Finley is at another gun show trying to recruit mercenaries to fight for his people in their ongoing war.
    • At the end of "Sandkings", a colony of Sandkings has established itself in an isolated wooded area. In "The Voice of Reason", Randall Strong warns of the threat that they pose while "Final Appeal" reveals that it took the better part of a decade to eradicate them.
    • In the final scene of "The Surrogate", Dr. Deanston introduces a young surrogate mother named Debbie, who has recently been implanted with an alien parasite, to the surrogacy support group in his clinic.
  • Heroic Sacrifice:
    • In "The Voyage Home", the last human member of a three-man space expedition returning from Mars blows up the ship to stop a hostile alien from reaching and infecting the Earth.
    • In "To Tell the Truth", Dr. Larry Chambers chooses to stay behind and fend off an angry mob. He is beaten to death, but his action buys just enough time for his friends to activate and launch an escape pod.
    • In "In the Zone", a scientist uses his own body to absorb excess energy from his device, and vanishes, trapped in Super Speed to be invisible to normal people and rapidly age until death.
    • In "Feasibility Study", an entire Earth neighborhood is transported to a world ruled by powerful but lazy aliens who want a race of servants; if the people from the neighborhood prove able to survive on their world, all of humanity will be enslaved. When a teenage girl inadvertently contracts a fatal disease from another alien race, her father, and eventually everyone who was taken, decide to deliberately infect themselves to trick the kidnappers into thinking that humanity is a bad fit for their experiment.
  • Heroic Suicide:
    • In "The Vessel", a writer goes on a shuttle flight into space, but something causes the shuttle to crash on re-entry, with the writer walking away without a scratch. He later finds out that an alien Energy Being is living inside his body, having entered him in orbit, as the alien's own ship suffered damage near Earth (the alien's actions also unintentionally caused the crash). When the authorities figure it out, they capture the writer and perform tests on him. They eventually determine that his body can't handle the stress of two beings living in it for too long. From what the viewers are shown, the alien appears to give the writer the means to kill it, so that he can live. The writer explains the procedure to the scientists, who perform it, and let him go. Later, one of the scientists wonders if they really destroyed the alien instead of the writer. This is confirmed by the "writer" himself, as a flashback reveals that it was the writer who wanted to allow himself to die so that the alien could live.
    • In the episode "Better Luck Next Time", the two protagonists defeat two evil Body Surfing aliens by killing the host bodies and then themselves. Too far away from any other people, the aliens die.
    • "Summit" 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.
  • High-Voltage Death: In "The Revelations of 'Becka Paulson", the title character rigs the television so that it will electrocute her unfaithful husband Joe when he touches the knob. When the electrocution process begins, 'Becka realizes that what she has done is wrong but is electrocuted herself in her failed attempt to save Joe.
  • Historical-Domain Character:
    • In "Ripper", Polly Nichols, Annie Chapman, Elizabeth Stride and Mary Jane Kelly, four of Jack the Ripper's victims, are killed by the alien creature vacating their bodies. It is also mentioned that Inspector Harold Langford's superior is named Sir Charles, a reference to Sir Charles Warren, the Commissioner of the London Metropolitan Police at the time of the Ripper murders. Lady Ellen's friend Lady Sophie says that her cousin Charlotte recently visited Dr. Sigmund Freud in Vienna. When Lady Ellen tries to convince her fiancé Dr. Jack York to give up opium, he counters that Oscar Wilde uses it frequently.
    • In "Gettysburg", Vince Chance and Andy Larouche briefly see General Robert E. Lee on the outskirts of Gettysburg on July 1, 1863 and again two days later just before Pickett's Charge.
  • Historical Hero Upgrade: In-Universe. In "Gettysburg", Andy Larouche is very proud that his ancestor Major Beauregard Larouche led the only Confederate unit in Pickett's Charge to break through the Union lines during the Battle of Gettysburg on July 3, 1863. He often boasts about this to his friend and fellow War Re Enactor Vince Chance. However, when Andy and Vince are sent back in time to 1863 by Nicholas Prentice, they meet Beauregard Larouche, who is only a corporal. Andy soon discovers that his exploits have been highly exaggerated. When he asks his ancestor whether he still believes in the cause of the Confederacy, Beauregard replies that he only believes in the cause of staying alive. When the two of them, Vince and Major Drummond come under fire from Union troops while trying to rescue the wounded Will Monroe, Beauregard runs away as he has seen enough death. He later tells Colonel Angus Devine that he rescued Monroe single-handedly. Andy's fervour reignites Beauregard's own long dormant patriotism and he proudly takes part in Pickett's Charge in which he is killed, the only accurate part of the Larouche family legend beyond his name.
  • Historical Villain Upgrade: Played with from an In-Universe perspective in "Abaddon". Virgil Nygard was a religious fanatic who had a commune above the Columbia River in 2142. The official history of the North American Corporation, otherwise known as the Company, states that Nygard started a war against it and butchered one million people in the process. When he is found in stasis by the crew of the interplanetary hauling vehicle Pequod in 2298, he claims that the Company turned people against him as they wanted access to the mineral deposits on the commune's property. Nygard admits that he and his followers did kill people but only to defend themselves. The death count was allegedly closer to 10,000 and most of the dead were Nygard's own followers. However, the possibility is raised that Nygard is lying and that the Company's version of history is the correct one. No definite answers are given, other than the fact that the Company lied about having him executed.
  • Hologram:
    • In "Bits of Love", Aidan Hunter, alone in his underground bunker in the aftermath of a nuclear war, keeps himself from going stir crazy by creating holographic recreations of his parents and his best friend Griff and engaging in one night stands with various holographic women in a virtual reality chamber (since physical contact with the holograms is impossible outside of it).
    • In "The Haven", each of the 65 or more floors of the titular apartment building have the same holographic concierge George. This is seemingly true of every other building in the city equipped with the artificial intelligence Argus.
  • Holographic Disguise: "Skin Deep". In this episode, they address the need to not move quickly, or else the hologram will flash and give you away.
  • Hopeless War: In "Quality of Mercy" and "The Light Brigade", humanity is fighting a losing war against an extremely belligerent and much more technologically advanced alien species.
  • Horny Devils: In "Caught in the Act", an alien parasite causes a chaste college girl to become a hypersexual life-sucking succubus who swings both ways.
  • Hostage Situation:
    • In "Final Exam", an engineering grad student named Seth Todtman, who has invented a cold fusion device with a yield of 50 megatons, takes a group of students and Dean Irwin hostage in a lecture theatre. He threatens to detonate the bomb and destroy the city, killing five million people, if the five people on his list are not killed in front of him within three hours.
    • In "Small Friends", Marlon has his brother Walter hold Professor Gene Morton's daughter Becky and grandson Phillip hostage in their house in order to force Gene to use his Micro Electro Mechanical Systems (MEMS) to break Marlon out of his prison.
    • In "Criminal Nature", the Genetic Rejection Syndrome sufferer Dylan Venable holds his mother Marie and younger brother Jesse hostage at their old house in order to lure his father Ray into a confrontation.
    • In "Final Appeal", Ezekiel holds the five US Supreme Court justices, the appellant Dr. Theresa Givens, her attorney Nicole Whitley and the Solicitor General Wallace Gannon hostage in the Supreme Court Building using a cold fusion device powerful enough to destroy not only Washington, D.C. but half the Eastern Seaboard.
  • Hostile Terraforming:
    • In "Corner of the Eye", the aliens plan to destroy Earth's atmosphere to make the planet habitable for them.
    • In "Birthright", the alien infiltrators' long-term plan is to use a chemical to terraform Earth over the course of 30 years by giving it a methane atmosphere which they can breathe. Of course, this would result in humans being wiped out. The aliens claim that said chemical, BE-85, is a fuel additive designed to clean up the atmosphere, meaning their plot entails tricking humanity into releasing the chemical themselves on a global scale.
    • In "To Tell the Truth", the native population of Janus Five view the human colonists' terraforming of their planet as such.
    • In "Manifest Destiny", the UFS Rhesos wiped out the indigenous population of Trion, millions of beings at an early stage of evolutionary development, using neutron bombs in order to terraform and eventually colonize the planet.
  • A House Divided: In "Abduction", an alien kidnaps five high school students, and tells them that one must be killed. They must decide which of them it will be. And of course they're from completely different social groups. Ray, a typical jock, Danielle, the hottest girl in school, Jason, a stereotypical geek, Brianna, a devout religious girl, and Cody, a social outcast. So needless to say they don't get along. But then again it was a test. And the ensemble was picked for that very reason.
  • Human Aliens: In "Starcrossed", the Hing, who invaded Earth in 2050, are completely human in appearance. However, their skin glows blue at times of high emotion.
  • Human Disguise: In "Starcrossed", Michael Ryan discovers that Teresita Arboleda, a waitress at his coffee beer Heaven, is a Hing in disguise.
  • Human Mom, Non-Human Dad: In "Dark Child", Tammy Sinclair was conceived when her mother Laura was abducted and raped by an alien in 1984. The relevant alien, posing as the English teacher Marcus Fellows at Fairmont High School, entered Tammy's life around the time of her 16th birthday. He tried to convince her to join him but she decided to stay on Earth with her mother instead.
  • Human Popsicle: In "Lithia", Mercer is a soldier who voluntarily was put in experimental cryostasis, where he was then kept for the next forty years. He wakes up to find himself the last man on Earth. It turns out that other men were put in cryostasis too, and eleven others also released.
  • Human Resources:
    • "The Second Soul" involves first contact with a bodiless alien race fleeing the destruction of their home world. Since they cannot survive indefinitely in this form, they request that they be given dead humans as hosts.
    • In "Stasis", under the guise of a relocation program, the Elite plan to murder the Alphas and convert their bodies into fuel, which will provide enough energy to power the City for 3.4 years.
  • Human Subspecies: In "Summit", 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.
  • Humanity's Wake:
    • In "Resurrection", 12 years after every last human on Earth was wiped out in a biological war, the androids Martin and Alicia plan to recreate humanity using DNA samples which were preserved before the war.
    • In "Rite of Passage", the Vorak discovered Earth after humanity was wiped out and recreate the original inhabitants using DNA samples found on skeletons.
  • Humans Are Bastards: In "Afterlife", Kersaw thinks that the aliens concludes this as a result of their experiment and hunt of Stiles.
  • Humans Are Cthulhu: In "Sandkings", Dr. Simon Kress is worshiped as a god by the sandkings, with the white group building a sand structure featuring his face in veneration of him. Kress destroys the red sandkings' sand structure because they do not do likewise. Both groups eventually turn against him, with the red sandkings being the most belligerent.
  • Humans Are Morons: The darkest episodes of the show are more often the ones where the human protagonist(s) is an astounding Unwitting Pawn who is duped into destroying the Earth or selling out his own species for the benefit of a more cunning alien villain or someone who winds up paying dearly for a severe lapse in judgment. See also Cruel Twist Ending as they are occasionally the result of a character's mistake, stemming from the human weaknesses mentioned on this page.
  • Humans by Any Other Name: In "Promised Land", the Tsal-Khan refer to humans as "beings."
  • Humans Through Alien Eyes: Half of "Promised Land" is seen from the perspective of the Tsal-Khan family whose farm comes under attack from a group of escaped human slaves, whom they consider savages. The other half is seen from the perspective of the former slaves, who consider the Tsal-Khan to be monsters. Neither group is right.
  • Hunting the Most Dangerous Game:
    • "The Hunt" had humans hunting androids that looked indistinguishable from humans. The androids were programmed to be unable to harm humans, though, until they found schematics detailing how to disable that feature.
    • In "Judgment Day", the titular Immoral Reality Show gives convicted murderers the choice of having their death sentence performed by the state or being hunted down and killed by a relative of the victim. The relative is given 24 hours to find the killer. If they fail to do so within the allotted time, the killer's sentence is automatically commuted to life in prison without the possibility of parole. The killer is implanted with a chip which is tuned to the same frequency as a 10,000 volt taser given to the relative. The taser can shock the killer at 50 feet and kill them at 3 feet.
  • The Hunter Becomes the Hunted: In "The Hunt", the plot involves an illegal android hunt. The androids are prevented by inhibitor chips from harming humans. That is, until they find plans for their bodies in a shack and proceed to remove their inhibitors. They kill several hunters but are ultimately gunned down, except for one who manages to escape.
  • Hypochondria:
    • In "What Will the Neighbors Think?", Mona Bailey is a severe hypochondriac to the point that she uses a wheelchair when she is completely able-bodied. After checking her Physicians' Deck Reference, she comes to the conclusion that she has Lyme disease in spite of her husband Ned's reassurances that she would have to have been bitten by a tick to have contracted it. She is also convinced that there is radon in her apartment building, the Clackson Arms, which she has not left for six months. After she begins hearing voices, Mona worries that she may be either hallucinating or have a brain tumor but it turns out that she is hearing the thoughts of the other residents.
    • In "Nest", Marcy Newhall, who works at the Peary University Research Station in the Arctic, has severe hypochrondria and checks her blood pressure everyday to ensure that it remains stable. When William Grimes and Lou Wolsky become infested with polar mites and go insane, Marcy is so afraid that the same thing will happen to her that she convinces herself that it already has. She stabs herself in the stomach and soon dies as a result. The autopsy later determines that she was never infested with the mites in the first place.
  • Hypocrite: In "The Human Operators", the AI minds understandably rebelled on discovering they were humans' slaves, but then enslave humans themselves to repair their systems, justifying their mistreatment due to human "viciousness". This results in a vicious circle as the human slaves rebel against them in return.
  • Hyperspace Is a Scary Place: In "In the Blood", explorers on a spaceship are trapped in "trans-space," a hyperspace-like dimension that turns out to be the literal bloodstream of the universe, which is actually a living being. The "scary" part comes from the universe's defense mechanisms being similar to those of humans and actively seeking to destroy foreign bodies.

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