Tuesday, January 17, 2012


'Beyond Westworld' was a very short-lived TV series that continued the story of the androids created for the amusement parks "Westworld" and "Futureworld" (and thus those two theatrical films are pulled into the TV universe). Broadcast in 1980, it was set in the near future (probably at some point in the 1990's.)

Here's the thumbnail description from Wikipedia:
It features Jim McMullan as Security Chief John Moore of the Delos Corporation. The story revolves around John Moore having to stop the evil scientist, Quaid, as he plans to use the robots in Delos to try to take over the world. Despite being nominated for two Emmys (Outstanding Achievement In Makeup, and Outstanding Art Direction For A Series), only five episodes were produced, and only three of them were aired before cancellation.

The androids that were created by the Delos Corporation to infiltrate human society were "enrolled" in a secret university, programmed to believe that they were providing a service to benefit Mankind by replacing them in the world.

Here are a couple of their androids through the years:

The inner workings of those androids were fully mechanical; they were not cyborgs. But their outer covering was "synth-skin" cloned from actual human tissue. This would help provide them the means to escape detection. Not only would it look and feel like real skin - and react appropriately if cut or bruised or injured in any way - but any epithelial tissue left behind at crime scenes would fool the investigators from the local 'CSI' units.

To ensure that last part, detailed background information would be embedded into the world-wide web to back up any claims about the androids' identities. And to keep it as believable as possible, these false identities would claim a relationship to the donors of the cloned synth-skin. This means that more than likely the donors of those genetic samples were dead, so as to eliminate the possibility of contradiction.
As mentioned in the previous post about the 'Screen Directors Playhouse' episode "Partners", Terry Johnson was a fourteen year old boy in 1956 who was "adopted" by rodeo legend Casey Tibbs (his televersion, at any rate.) Because of his iconic status as a child star, it's possible that many of Brandon de Wilde's TV characters never survived past the year 1972 - the year in which de Wilde, who played Terry Johnson, was killed in a car crash at the age of 30. (Which is not to say that they all had to have died, but for the purpose of this article, we're going to claim that Terry Johnson didn't survive much longer beyond de Wilde.)
If Terry Johnson also died at that time (perhaps in a rodeo accident?), it could be that his skin samples were collected by undercover agents for the Delos Corporation at the hospital where he was pronounced dead. Eventually they would be used to create the synth-skin for an android who was also named "Johnson" and who graduated at the top of the "Class Of '99". His online identity would probably mark him as the son of Terry Johnson, and the young bronco rider wouldn't be around to disavow it.

(Brandon de Wilde was 27 years old when he filmed that segment of 'Night Gallery', but being an android, Johnson's "age" would not have been a factor. He could pass for 22 years old.....)


Toobnote: Cinephiles will recognize the picture of Brandon de Wilde, supposedly as Terry Johnson, to be that of young Luke from "Hud". So it's not actually Toobworld, but I think it's a close approximation of what Terry would have looked like at that age.   

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