"The Twilight Zone" Little Girl Lost (TV Episode 1962) Poster

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Little Girl Lost
maarck626 January 2017
If I were to make a list of my favorite Twilight Zone episodes this one would be in the top five. I never get tired of watching it. Maybe its because it was written by Richard Matheson. Matheson spent his life writing about families, whether it be abusive ones (Mute, Born of Man and Woman) or ones in trouble (A Stir of Echoes, Little Girl Lost). His writings influenced both Steven Spielberg and Steven King, and Little Girl Lost later became the influence for the Poltergeist franchise. And at a half hour, there is no fat on this story of a child who falls through a temporary porthole into another dimension, where the same can't be said about Poltergeist.

Of course, no telescript is any good unless it's well acted and this episode is very well acted indeed, I was especially taken with the beautiful Sarah Marshall, who gives a great performance as a mother on the verge of a breakdown, being shell-shocked, dazed, and panicky over the loss of her baby, all at once. Oh, and if you think that the premise a little too hard to believe, then you're watching the wrong show.
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One of the top ten of the series, with only one small flaw.
rixrex15 February 2007
This is the most memorable episode of my childhood years of watching Twilight Zone, and which also seems to have a part in inspiring the film poltergeist. It was likely more frightening because we kids had to go to bed right after the episode! Upon a recent viewing, the episode held up very well, and many things were distinctly apparent that were missed by the youthful viewer I once was. Set design was impeccable, the kind of house that would eventually become retro-chic and is so superbly done that it was hard to keep concentration upon the plot.

Regardless, the story is a 30 minute exposition that seems to go by in half the time, and leaves the viewer wishing it were longer. Yes, it seems to be the inspiration for Poltergeist, the expanded and more complete version we all wanted to see. Alas, the chalking of the wall showing the opening into the other dimension is particularly strange, as we see the neighbor scientist mark the borders in a rectangle, then oddly place unnecessary curves on the outside of the rectangle that have nothing to do with delineating the border, only to give him something to do while chatting an explanation. This was odd to me as a child and is still so.
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creepy, thought provoking, and wonderful
Qanqor11 July 2009
A great episode, one that definitely stays with you. One of the things which really makes it work is the excellent, creepy music (Bernard Herrman, I believe, so no surprise there).

The one thing which really mars the episode, for me, at least, was the awful obviously-dubbed voice of the child. It sounds so overtly like exactly what it is: a 32 year old adult trying to sound like a child. And it reaches an utter nadir at the end, when we get to hear a bit of the child's actual voice, immediately followed by more overdub. The two so obviously don't match. Beats me why that was done so cheesily. Surely they could've found a child actress who could actually do the lines herself; usually the Zone was much better about casting. I can only assume that they originally shot it with the child doing the lines, then decided that it was not usable, and had someone dub it at the last minute.
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Poltergeist Ripped It Off
Hitchcoc4 December 2008
When I was in high school a friend told me about this episode. I have known about it forever and now have finally seen it. The premise is great. What's disturbing are the histrionics of the main characters, especially the mother. There's also that thing where the guy they call seems to have things pretty well figured out. Nevertheless, the idea that there is an opening into another dimension is quite frightening. The use of a distorted lens is also pretty creepy. The one thing that bothered me is since the girl could hear them and vice versa, why didn't they try to communicate with her specifically. She seemed lucid. At least ask her a few questions about what it was like. I still enjoyed it very much.
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Another dimension for real
bkoganbing4 December 2013
Back when I was a kid I used to imagine all kinds of goings on under the bed so this particular Twilight Zone episode has a personal meaning for me. But imaginings become real when a little girl crawls under her bed and can be seen but not heard.

That's what happens to the child of Robert Sampson and Sarah Marshall and aren't they lucky that they have a physicist as a neighbor. Charles Aidman comes over and he can hear the girl and the little dog that went in after her. And he finds an opening to another dimension.

The Twilight Zone always had that opening about traveling to another dimension, not only of sight and sound but of mind. This was the episode it actually happened and the journey was far from pleasant.

But it's a good half hour of television.
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Excellent episode!
patricia-resnick13 March 2008
Okay, the acting is a little over the top. That's really the only mild criticism I have of this episode. Overall the whole thing hangs together quite consistently. And besides, I'd be a little wild-eyed dealing with a situation like this one! You've got to cut the scientist a little slack. He's in three dimensions, and he's trying to represent, in two dimensions, the portal to a fourth(?) dimension. I see those curved lines as representing boundaries he can't draw with a two (or even three) dimensional medium. (And yeah, I know the chalk has depth, but you know what I'm trying to say!) This is one of my all time favorites. No surprise it's Richard Matheson.
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"Junctures between dimensions are freaks of nature that happen..."
classicsoncall4 June 2010
Warning: Spoilers
One of the truly horrifying episodes of The Twilight Zone. The dread of going alone upstairs to the attic in my home as a kid might have been subliminally influenced by this episode, but then again, I thought there might have been a gorilla up there. I used to watch Tarzan and Jungle Jim a lot too.

Whenever I watch an old, I mean 1930's or 40's sci-fi flick, I'm always on the look out for those neat sounding pseudo-scientific explanations for whatever might be at the cause of the horror. This one had a beaut - "...if enough of the lines are parallel in both dimensions in a given area, it might create an opening". Hey, that's good enough for me. I thought physicist Bill (Charles Aidman) went a little overboard with the theatrical flourish of his arms when drawing those circular arcs on the wall. He could just as well have made them straight, couldn't he? Quite independently of other reviewers on this board I came up with the thought of "Poltergeist" being influenced by Serling's treatment here. It's been a while since I've seen that flick, so I'll reserve any further judgment.

What's pretty cool I think, is the way part of Bill's rationale for the hole in the wall links up to the tag line for the series in this, the third season. When pressed by the Millers as to where the opening leads to, he responds - "I think, to another dimension".
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Out Of The Twilight
telegonus28 July 2017
Little Girl Lost is an offbeat, nicely done Twilight Zone from the show's third season. After some weak episodes, this one, written by Richard Matheson, really scores. I wouldn't call it one of the best of the series but its high in the second tier.

A young suburban couple are awakened from their sleep by the sound of their daughter's crying, but when they go to look for her she's not in her room. The family dog's bark can also be faintly heard; but he's not there, either.

A scientist friend is called and he tells them the bad news: the child and dog have slipped into another dimension. He doesn't call it the twilight zone must he may as well have, as that's what it is.

The scientist manages to find a spot in the wall behind the child's bed that appears to be a kind of hole in the wall,--only there ain't no hole, but his hand disappears into it when he touches it--and he proceeds to outline it with a piece of chalk.

In short time the father enters the twilight world into which his daughter has apparently, as the scientist puts it, "fallen into"; and the dog is there, too. It's weird and trippy looking, and it feels like a planetarium designed by a madman.

Not quite outer space, it's strange place with no boundaries. Nowadays we might call it a parallel universe. At the time the episode was made it was more like nowhere.

Kudos for the studio art department for creating this eerie and yet oddly seductive place. I'd love to have seen more of it. The child and her dog are saved, but just barely, as the hole in the wall was apparently in the process of closing up just prior to their return.

There's some food for thought in Little Girl Lost; and it's difficult not to be intrigued by its basic premise. The scientific ideas, such as they can be called, aren't all that well presented but they're good enough for a well above average half-hour of television.
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The inspiration for Poltergeist?
jezfernandez11 February 2018
This is a creepy little tale because of how unexplained the whole thing is. A little girl disappears into another dimension and the parents can only hear her disembodied voice. Where is she and how do they get her back?

Like Poltergeist (1982), the most intriguing aspect is how an ordinary suburban home can become a portal to something terrifying.

A tight little episode, and classic Twilight Zone.
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This episode is a critical junction point in the twilight zone
stevenpaulmaxkeith21 August 2011
I watch this show constantly ever since I bought the DVD set a year ago. I was a big fan growing up, watching as a frightened kid and eventually coming to respect everything about the show. In fact I carry the dvds around like a bible of sorts. I even have some residual subconscious notions about the Twilight Zone being a real place, left over from childhood. A kind of other dimension, as Rod's classic introductory monologues indicate.

Anyways, about this particular episode I've noticed a number of interesting things. My thesis amounts to this: Little Girl Lost is essentially a "critical point" within the very fabric of The Twilight Zone, as it connects with other episodes in interesting ways and deals with the subject of "another dimension," the very thing we are told the Zone is. Listed below are some of the ways in which this episode folds over and touches on other points throughout the series, similar to the way the physicist in Little Girl Lost describes the "intersecting points" of other dimensions!

#1: The lost little girl's name in the episode is Tina. She happens to also appear in the later 5th season episode, Living Doll. As I'm sure those reading are aware, the doll in Living Doll's episode is named Talky TINA. The little girl's name there is Christy, incidentally.

#2: The dad's name is Chris. Another connection can be made with Living Doll here; in Living Doll, the estranged stepfather, Eric, tells Christy (our Little Girl) "I'M NOT YOUR DADDY!" As to who is Christy's daddy, this is not discussed. But our CHRIS in Little Girl Lost could very well be CHRISTy's daddy, or at least the names can connote this notion.

#3: Chris can't find his daughter, so what does he do? He calls Bill, his physicist friend, on the telephone. Interestingly enough, the actor playing Chris was in another episode called Long Distance Call. That episode is one of the three TZ episodes that feature Billy Mumy. In Long Distance Call, Billy Mumy's character is named Billy! And, in case you don't know the plot, Billy's dying grandma gives him a toy telephone and tells him he "can always talk to Grandma." Billy does so even after she passes away. At one point Billy nearly drowns and it is Chris who picks up the toy telephone and asks his mother to return his son. Much as the Chris in Little Girl Lost seeks the return of his daughter, 'from beyond.' The reason I bring this up is, as he is on the phone with his physicist friend, he calls him "Billy" !

#4: Bill the physicist is also a repeat cast member, having appeared in only one other episode: And When The Sky Was Opened. 1st season. His character in that was Ed Harrington. The plot goes like this, Col. Clegg Forbes visits his wounded fellow pilot Maj. William Gart in the army hospital. He tells Gart that Col. Ed Harrington has gone missing, and that nobody remembers him having ever existed! Gart doesn't know anyone named Harrington either, he says Forbes must have made him up.. I won't spoil the ending but Bill the physicist played the part of the mysteriously disappearing Ed Harrington early on in the series, which may be what makes him the go-to guy in Little Girl Lost. Although he claims not to be "an expert in these things." The actor's name is Charles Aidman, and he was also the narrator for the 1980s Twilight Zone revival series! THE MORE YOU KNOW

anyway i might have missed something or gotten some of my facts wrong but i was tripping out about all the synchronicities in this episode. One other thing along the lines of #1 is that in Living Doll, Christy's mother is yet another repeat cast member, having appeared as the lovely Mary in A World of His Own. Her character also appears and disappears throughout the episode. The playwright that repeatedly creates and 'uncreates' Mary is Mr. Gregory West, played by Keenan Wynn. At the end of that episode we see that Mr. West has an envelope with Rod Serling's name on it. This particular episode marks Rod's first on screen appearance during an episode, and also his only direct interaction with a cast member. The playwright acknowledges and directly addresses Rod, and then throws his envelope into the fire, causing him to DISAPPEAR! Rod says "Well, that's the, way it goes" and fades away. Also, Keenan Wynn, who played Gregory West the playwright, is the son of Ed Wynn, famed actor who appeared in two other episodes, One For The Angels and Ninety Years Without Slumber, and was also in Rod Serling's first venture into television, Requiem for a Heavyweight, which was a kind of predecessor to the Twilight Zone.

Thanks for reading, hope you enjoyed some of these ideas and maybe you're inspired to try to find other connections and inter-Zone interplay. What I like to do now that I have the dvds and know the show so well is to try and weave a thread from episode to episode, keeping in mind a connecting theme or prop or word or phrase or whatever. THANKS and god bless
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AaronCapenBanner29 October 2014
Robert Sampson & Sarah Marshall play Chris & Ruth Miller, parents of a young girl named Tina who one night cries out for help from her bedroom. Trouble is, they can't find her, but come to realize that she has somehow slipped into another dimension, at least that's what their friend and neighbor Bill(played by Charles Aidman) thinks, since by coincidence is also a scientist, and has always believed such things were possible, but also realizes that this portal will close soon unless one of them ventures forth into the portal to get Tina back... Entertaining if contrived episode isn't entirely believable either, but that glimpse into the netherworld is quite memorable and effective.
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One of those nights.
darrenpearce11115 January 2014
Tense and taut story from Richard Matheson about a couple who can hear their six year old daughter calling them in the night- but cant see her at all. The little girl is in the fourth dimension.

Chris (Robert Sampson) calls his friend Bill, a physicist, who has to work out a plan. The mother (Sarah Marshall) panics and shouts-well you cant blame her, can you?. Bill is the only character showing any logical initiative as they move around the house still hearing little Tina and the dog who follows her in to that dimension.

Enjoyable and impressive short fantasy drama. Some nice little deductions come from Bill about how the fourth dimension works. How do you get in and, more importantly, how do you get out?
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Where did the little girl go?
Woodyanders1 June 2018
Warning: Spoilers
Tina Miller (adorable Tracy Stratford) slips through a portal into another dimension. It's up to Tina's parents and their helpful physicist friend Chris (a fine performance by Charles Aidman) to figure out a way to retrieve Tina from said other dimension.

Director Paul Stewart does an ace job of crafting an eerie and intriguing enigmatic atmosphere and keeps the absorbing story moving along at a brisk pace. Richard Matheson's compelling script neatly sets up the central situation with admirable economy and delivers an especially chilling close call at the climax. Robert Sampson and Sarah Marshall are both credible and sympathetic as the worried and concerned parents, with Marshall a particular stand-out as Tina's distraught mother Ruth. The scenes in the alternate dimension are really freaky and disorienting. The fluid cinematography by George T. Clemens and Bernard Herrmann's moody score further enhance the overall sterling quality of this classic episode.
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An interesting idea--though there isn't a whole lot to this episode.
MartinHafer17 May 2010
Warning: Spoilers
If I was given the job of summarizing all the episodes of "The Twilight Zone", I think I could do the briefest summary of this particular show, as there really isn't a lot to the plot--though I must admit it is interesting. The show starts with a little girl disappearing and when her parents look for her, they can hear her voice. However, she has apparently slipped into another dimension (don't you hate when that happens?!) and the parents are baffled about how to get to her. Eventually, the dad finds that there is a blank spot where whatever you put into it just disappears--seemingly to this other dimension where the girl is. So, in desperation, he eventually goes in--praying that the folks tethering him don't let go! All in all, this is a show that is good but you really can see this show being just as effective if done in 5 or 10 minutes--as it's a very, very simple idea. Too bad the show didn't have a format like "Night Gallery"--I really think this one might have been a bit better being a bit shorter and more to the point. Good--not great.
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Who you gonna call?
adguy10141 January 2016
Warning: Spoilers
This is one of the more bizarre episodes, and that's really saying something. I can buy into the whole premise because it is, after all, just a TV show. The parents can hear their child crying but can't find her. So who should they call? The police? No, they call their neighbor the physicist. Really? That's the first person you thought to call? This probably would have made a great 1-hour episode. I think the writers came up with a pretty interesting premise and then realized they had less than 30 minutes to explain it. They're pretty lucky that their neighbor happens to be a physicist. My neighbor is a dentist. He's the last person I'd call if my daughter mysteriously vanished into my house.
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No more Mr. Nice Guy...
poe42626 June 2013
I went on record, in print, at the time of the film's release, to point out that POLTERGEIST was simply an overblown rip-off of THIS episode of THE TWILIGHT ZONE (I also cited several other obvious "influences")- but I was genuinely surprised when Richard Matheson himself professed no ill will toward the producers of the movie. He didn't see anything wrong with their all-too blatant theft of his intellectual property. Whatever his reason(s), I was baffled; but I came to accept his wisdom on the matter. Back THEN... But I can't help but feel, right now, that it was theft, plain and simple. Matheson himself is gone, but his legacy remains; it's too bad, though, that the guilty parties in this case never felt inclined to INCLUDE him in their money-making endeavors. That's just something THEY'll have to live with, I guess.
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Comments For after You've Seen The Episide
CoastalCruiser29 July 2019
Warning: Spoilers
This episode, and an Outer Limits episode called 'The Premonition' where a military pilot crash lands and is caught in a time warp whereby most everyone else appears frozen in time but in fact are just moving imperceptibly slow, really put the hook in me as a child. I've remembered those two episodes all my life as trippy stories I couldn't stop thinking about.

This episode entitled 'Little Girl Lost' has a clever twist that indicate the writer was really thinking. Notice that it was written as only the dog, with its extra-sensory faculties, that could find the way back to the opening. Another writer may not have thought to add that twist, which puts emphasis on the notion that space-time in the other dimension was not equivalent to our 3-dimensional world.

Some pretty decent special effects as well, considering all they had back then for effects were stone knives and bear skins.

I love the criticism leveled in a review entitled 'Who you gonna call?' when they chastise this episode's writing for having a physicist as a neighbor. Like its impossible to have a physicist living next door. Dude, it's not like all physicist;s live in a physicist-only enclave. They're people just like you and me (or at least me) who need housing.

The same reviewer also reveals that his next door neighbor is a dentist, and he would never call upon his dentist if the same thing happened. Right dude. That's why YOUR house was not used in this episode. They needed a house in a hood with a physicist. Dude, they only had a half-hour to come up with a solution. There was no time to channel Einstein, or fly someone in from the Hadron Particle Accelerator project (which actually was being planned back in the 60s).

The bulk of the other reviews are dead on correct when they single out this episode as one of the best TZs ever.
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I'm Some Place Where I Don't Know Where I Am
buccola1318 May 2019
Simpsons did it.

Good episode. Creepiness doesn't hold up.
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Excellent alternate dimension bizarre episode
UniqueParticle15 May 2019
A family gets confused about where their daughter disappeared to realizing there's a portal in the wall in her room. Not much else needed to be said. Among the best episodes ever!
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A scary episode that i don't recommend to oversensitive people
seve07216 December 2015
Warning: Spoilers
The first time i watched this episode "The little girl lost"i was a teenager and very sensitive and it scared the hell out of me.I was so frightened by the screams of this little girl and the optical effects that it impressed me for long. The story is about a parallel world but it sounds fake especially when the man makes crosses with a chalk on the wall that has a hole..he could have gone through the wall too but he couldn't't..strange and a bit unrealistic. The end is happy for the mother and her daughter who is found and still alive but there is no explanation of this disappearance and we don't know if the family will stay in the same house or move into another.A creepy episode not bad at the beginning but which stretches and is too long and it contains too many screams..this is not the best episode and from very far.Overrated for me.
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Fun, but...
slbain9000-871-317762 January 2019
Your daughter is missing so you... call a physicist? Uh huh...
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Ugh just okay!
mm-3925 July 2017
Warning: Spoilers
Ugh just okay! Little Girl Lost has a girl disappear with no explanation. The parents hear the girls voice but can not see her. Luckily and a plot device for the audience the family happens to know a meta physicist who is an expert of string theory. No not the Doc from back to the future! Anyway, the family dog with doggie spiddy sense can sniff out the girl. Finds her and rescues the daughter! The experts meta physicist mentions the inter-dimensional hole despairs right after the rescue;tension from the director. Neat episode, but kind of lame. 6 out of 10 stars.
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cbig-8879519 June 2018
I have an incredibly tough time rating a show with any number from 2 to 9. If I like it it's a 10, if I don't it's a 1. This one gets a 1. This one fails for me because clearly that's not a little girls voice you hear coming from the so-called 4th dimension. It goes downhill from there, if that's possible. Add to that the mother being too over-the-top with the drama.
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