1964 visions of 2011

View the Future of 2011 through the eyes of the 1964 “Outer Limits” episode “The Duplicate Man”

by  Doug Yurchey

     ‘Let’s have fun today, students (like going outside for school) and discover what the world of 2011 will be like.  An old, sci-fi projection of tomorrow should be very interesting when compared to reality or the actual life we live presently.  CLASS…we’re going to have a movie!’ 

  We will be analyzing the “The Outer Limits”episode called ‘The Duplicate Man’ because of the time period the story was set: 2011.  

Science fiction is different from fantasy.  Sci-fi is an imaginative guess of what will really happen in the future; right or wrong.  Classic science fiction has often estimated correctly such as space travel, lasers, communication via orbiting satellites, etc. As you will see in this case and more often than not, what we assume will occur in the future…is not even close.

We can learn from ‘what people (writers) thought at the time.’  Please disregard what silliness you may perceive.  Outer Limits was an early, 1960s television show without big budgets; that had a weekly ‘monster.’  Look past the monster and corniness. COMPARE what they actually believed the future (47-year jump) would be…to the truth of present-day society.  Let us view the show from 1964 and take note of the cars; houses; phones and what technology will be possible in the world of 2011:     http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0YJTVGvAanY ( available only in US).

Writers of classic sci-fi and producers of “Outer Limits” were not trying to be ‘campy’ or ‘spoof’ the future, they were trying to be accurate.  In 1964, why would the best minds ever think the U.S. Space Program would end?  Who could imagine that (public) MANNED missions would come to a grinding halt as they recently have?  In the story, there were astronauts exploring other planets throughout the 1980s and 1990s.  Surely in 1964, this was not a surreal concept…but a logical one.

    MY POINT is the ‘nightmare,’ in reality, is not the ‘unimaginable aliens’ we will encounter in the future…the nightmare is our present society, which we only THINK is modern/advanced/sophisticated.  The nightmare is we have become technologically degenerate.  Governments have RETARDED our growth and true progress; kept us stupid.  Knowledge and technology have been doled out to us in such small increments, unlike the fictional future of our story.  MAYBE WE SHOULD BE EVERY BIT AS ADVANCED as this O.L. episode projects?  Why aren’t we?  What went wrong in reality?

     In our story, we get the sense that space discoveries were OPEN to the public; that there existed full disclosure.   Alien life we found in outer space was on display throughout museums and not hidden from the general public.  Presently, NASA is known for its cover-ups; deceptions; editing and white-washing of space discoveries.

     The title is interesting.  ‘CLONE’ was too new of a word so ‘duplicate’ was used.  When a dangerous alien escapes from being held illegally on Earth, the main character clones himself to kill the creature.  Cloning had been an accepted procedure ‘for many years’ with a ‘Federal Duplication Bureau.’  Rules had changed; now cloning was deemed a ‘felony.’  Our main character pulls some strings and gets his clone made.

     The duplicate could also be ‘programmed’ for any task.  Duplicates are destroyed within 5 hours because they tend to remember more and more of the original’s life.  There are interesting scenes such as the psychic creature informs the clone that he is a duplicate.  Clone and original face-off near the end, which is reminiscent of Arnold Schwarzenegger in ‘The 6th Day.’ 

The car was a customized, 1964 Buick Riviera that hummed.  Seemed apparent the vehicle was electric or ran on something other than gasoline.  Check out the large phone receivers set on the dashboard of the car.  The writers missed with the phones.  They still used rotary-dial with the thick, curly cords.  There were Picture-Phones as seen on the ‘Jetsons.’  Yet, the Internet was not anticipated by classic sci-fi writers.

     Our main character’s clone and later the original, go to the house of the man who helped him smuggle the alien.  Examine the spacey abode of the future.  This was a time before elaborate special-effects.  In 1964, they found a real home that appeared as a spaceship on a huge pole.  A motorized incline elevates visitors up to the round, top section.  Doesn’t everybody have rounded homes on towers in 2011?

     A few years before Star Trek, this Outer Limits episode showed a sliding door probably operated by an electric eye.  Other doors, gates and a water fountain functioned untouched.  The view from the tall, spaceship-tower home showed a futuristic metropolis.  Even the weapon used to kill the creature was more like a ray gun than a normal handgun.  

     As far as clothing, suit jackets have no lapels and ties have no knot on top.  A secretary at the Duplication Bureau wore a highly reflective dress.   THIS WAS 2011.  Now, consider other early future projections like the film ‘Just Imagine.’  Here is a blurb:  ‘New York, 1980: airplanes have replaced cars, numbers have replaced names, pills have replaced food, government-arranged marriages have replaced love, and test tube babies have replaced (sex).’   

Source: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zD5YWJbni6E

     The clip is from ‘Just Imagine,’ filmed in 1930.  Unbelievable scenes, like early Star Wars, depict constantly flying (round) craft over a super-city.  They projected 50 years into the future.  This was how the wonder world of 1980 would appear!  Yes, the movie was made to forget the horrors of the Depression and to just imagine how BETTER tomorrow will be.  Yet, the presumed technology is future science and should or could have happened.  What derailed the dreams of those that presented the World’s Fair of 1939, the World of Tomorrow?  Technology beyond our wildest imagination was right around the corner!  What happened around this time, class, which completely STOPPED our technological progress?     

Science-Fiction … and reality

     I found this link which is real footage from the ’39 NY World’s Fair – the FUTURAMA where they show a model and narrate what the world of 1960 would be like…remember this was in ’39, so it goes with the question I posed: what happened to progress? 


      Contrary to popular belief, WAR is not good for progress.  War; political conflicts; energy spent on destruction have all contributed to the SIMPLIFICATION and ARRESTED DEVELOPMENT of our society today.  Our modernism is only an illusion. We remain in a new version of the 1950s; conservative and conforming.  This is the 21st Century, for crying out loud!  We should have thoroughly explored our Solar System and have approached other star systems by now.  THAT’S progress.  

     If we took 90% of our huge Defense budget…and used it where it was needed…we would remain safe and protected.  But, we cannot do that in a Capitalistic Society; nothing is given.  Technology is not given away, freely.  Why can’t we have a Star Trek-like civilization with all their truly modern conveniences?  The fictional world had no money system or need for a money system.  That was the distant past and we do things BETTER now.  

     Another old film to consider is ‘Things to Come’ (1936) written by H.G. Wells.      


Before this writer gets blasted again for basing ideology on movies or science fiction, maybe my critics should understand…sci-fi is not silly…
…Science Fiction makes dreams come true; it anticipates what IS TO COME; it has flung us far into space; into the planet; our psyche and deep into our imaginations.  Einstein might agree that we can learn more from imagination than we can learn from knowledge.   

Copyright 2011 by  Doug Yurchey


PS 1:  Subject Related

Great movie (if you missed it):  “The Island”. 

In this action thriller, survivors of global contamination live in a sterile, self-contained world where their every move is monitored. The rules are easy: be pleasant, refrain from asking questions, and don’t rock the boat. Everything they need is provided for them, from the white uniforms that magically appear in their closets, to their customized cafeteria-style meals. The survivors all eagerly await their big payoff: winning the lottery and being sent to The Island, the only remaining untainted land in the world. But Lincoln Six-Echo (Ewan McGregor) yearns for more from his life and begins to wonder what really lies outside the thick walls. When his best friend, Jordan Two-Delta (Scarlett Johansson), wins the lottery, he knows that he has to find out the truth about their world before she departs. What he finds is terrifying enough to send Lincoln and Jordan fleeing from the facility to the real world where they quickly discover the truth…



If you like old science-fiction movies, check out the “The Outer Limits (The Original Series)”



  1. Leondardo Melchiezidec says

    This is to Ron Cook…forgetting the lark of outer limits.
    Ive been short with you and even rude. I would like to apologize and from the bottom of whats left of a strangled heart. Youve been kind to me and as I sought to argue and fight you showed me something that impressed me. Youve known me by many names on this site. You also know when its me no matter what name I use. I do know that there are mysteries out here and I hate the proposition that aliens have anything to do with it. Yes..its me…the alien denier, as long as no actual proof exists then any theory is as good as the next. Its just a simple logic. I see series like “Ancient Aliens” and it makes my blood boil. These so called experts postulate and claim and not one shread of evidence is produced. Nothing. Great graphics and artwork,great history except when they start claiming its all “extraterestrial intervention” and they have the nerve to call themselves scientists? Id say,that all of the so called miracles that they claim are from some alien origen…were most likely from the God that they deny and I see more evidence of that God everyday,just watching a bird fly past my window than any theory that they cook up.
    Now…lets look at the deeper meaning of this and the people that believe this unfounded alien crap. It leads people away from God. Thats what it accomplishes and the faith you have always had…is now a delusion. What do we fight? Did the Alien make that bird that just flew by my window? Im not a fundamentalist,I believe evolution had a huge part and believe that to be the true miracle rather than just a 6 day rabbit popping out of a hat. Science serves a purpose,its nature is truth and so is Gods…eventually these 2 concepts must converge. God is science…its the law.
    Is it possible that other worlds have life? Sure,why not? Intelligent,advanced life? The possibility of it,well,some say yes and some say no…look at how long it took for man to evolve on this one planet. Its possible but how likely is it that they are intelligent or capabile of inter planetary transport,light years away. I say its something else Ron. String theory says we are many different dimensions…if we are dealing with dimensions we could be dealing with anything and my best guess is that they are DEMONS. Its a theory as good as any other. They hurt people with experimentation,they break every law known to science and physics,they hide and never get caught. They never crash land…physically they dont exist. They look cute and green like Kermit the Frog but we just cant catch one? These extraterrestrial genius’s ,the best they got is fancy crop circles? Come on Ron,give me something here. I bust my brain over this thing and each time…it comes up as bad.

  2. says

    Human Leveraging is a preoccupation of those who wish to use OTHERS. They leverage our minds so they can play the game. It is the Biggest Game in Town. Humanity could become great but we have allowed others to lie to us due to our slothful mentality. We have people on this earth that do nothing but play and self-gratify themselves. Hell, half of us don’t even work at anything and most of them are totally worthy of nothing expect worth form those who do work. This present experiment in Human Development is just about over. We have failed and there is little chance of recovery. As a former University Educator, I know who is at fault. It is they who wish to create mindless slaves who will do the bidding of politicos… We had a shot and let the ball drop. If I were wealthy I would know what to do, but to do this I would need to put a new system in place of this worthless academic world that stresses passing grades for nothing. Merit is the prime mover to learning.

  3. joebanana says

    One would think that human beings should have advanced to the point where needless, pointless, mindless killing of fellow humans had “evolved” out of the gene pool. To the contrary, humans seem to have devolved into wild cave dwelling self loathers. Which government has a lot to do with. They teach that lying and killing are just what societies do, what governments do, what criminals do. America used to have principles, morals, standards, and honor. In a mere ten years, all that has given way to no principles, lousy morals, low standards, and dishonor. America may have been attacked by a small group of crazies, but to turn into a huge criminally insane cartel of murderous, thievin’, lying, cheating, puddle of toilet scum, is not what an “advanced society” would do. Communication is a gift, it’s what the more intelligent types use to avoid conflict. It’s what humans used to use, but government isn’t human, it uses death and destruction to communicate. This mentality is what keeps civilization from advancing.

  4. Doug Yurchey says

    The article focuses on numerous future predictions. The Outer Limits episode was only one honest example of things to come…after a 47-year Flash Forward. The ‘Just Imagine’ clip from 1930 jumps 50 years into a highly-imaginative world of 1980. But, the most important clip is the real footage GM FUTURAMA ‘World of Tomorrow’ shown at the NY World’s Fair of 1939. Dreams of scientists for the projected year of 1960 are more than stunning – when you realize what really could have been; seen in this film of the future. It was WORLD WAR (II) that ended the idyllic dreams of tomorrow and murdered utopia.
    Tesla designed a New Age for the coming 20th Century with his 187′ power tower (Wardenclyffe)…but it was the advent of the First World War that ended plans for Paradise. His early, magnetic towers are incompatible with our communications and computer systems of today. We’re trapped from really progressing because no one is going to junk everything and start again the right way. I believe our pyramid-building ancestors were MORE advanced than us and used Electromagnetic principles the proper way. But, utopia never lasts.
    My point is…here we are in the 21st Century…and it remains primitive times with only an illusion of technical sophistication. If we understood TESLA’s wireless induction methods…then, we would not think of our present systems as advanced…we would have a far more efficient alternative…and understand how truly barbaric we are with our cell phones, TV and computers (and WIRES).

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