Jordan Peele’s Twilight Zone seems like its throwing everything it can at the wall to see what sticks. While this can result in some phenomenally heinous stories, we also get some rather lovely ones too such as this one. An episode that doesn’t rely on monsters, heavy handed analogy, or shock value, but rather on a simple question: Is human love our greatest weakness or our most profound strength?
A alien probe, designed to mimic humans and manipulate them in preparation for an invasion, invades the home of Robert and Barbara, taking the form of their recently deceased daughter.
This is, of course, met with confusion and terror but, as the story progresses, the probe becomes self aware and confesses that it has fallen victim to their love for their daughter and wishes to remain in her form and be a part of their family.
Straight up: I loved this episode. It wasn’t action packed or incredibly intense, but this is science fiction at its finest, a high concept story with a human touch and a philosophical question. Will love victimize or empower us? Can we unwittingly weaponize the emotion of love? Can it be weaponized against us?
If you’re expecting answers, “A Human Face” doesn’t give them and I honestly believe that serves as the episode’s strongest positive. So much… the probe’s true motivations, the question of the power of love, and the wonderful ending where dozens of families walk contentedly down the street with their lost loved ones can be viewed as either a beautiful or terrifying thing. Did the aliens win? Did the human race chance into the happiest of endings?
That’s up to you.
Christopher Meloni, Jenna Elfman, and Tavi Gevinson all submit terrific performances for your approval. The three-person show was intense, heart-felt, frank, and emotionally driven as you can tell these three brought out the absolute best in each other. Motivations made sense, suspicion and acceptance were more than justified…
I’m just gonna say it… this episode was brilliant on all levels. It is a science-fiction drama with a wonderful coda that will have you thinking about it long after the end credits roll and, the true kicker is, this episode contains almost none of the artificial edge that has largely tainted the other episodes of this revival.
The more I think about, “A Human Face,” the more I love it.