23 September 2019

Little Girl Lost

There are tons of Easter eggs scattered throughout the Hollywood Tower Hotel, also known as the Tower of Terror, to the spookiest show, and attraction inspiration, The Twilight Zone. The hidden nods are tucked away on bookshelves, in the audio of the attraction, and permeate almost every area of the hotel’s grounds. If there is one tribute I am drawn to more than any other, however, it is the chalk outlined bricks that reside along the wall as you make your way from your service elevator over to on-ride photo viewing area.

In the 26th episode of The Twilight Zone’s third season we are introduced to a family desperately seeking their daughter in Little Girl Lost, based upon the short story by Richard Matheson. The little girl in question, Tina, is missing, but can be heard crying and calling to her parents from multiple places within their house. Their family friend, and local physicist, arrives and find a space between worlds is imbedded in Tina’s bedroom wall. The friend, Bill, explains that a parallel dimension has butted up against our own and has created a portal where it intersects with the wall. Bill outlines the portal that leads to the fourth dimension, Tina’s father ends up in the fourth dimension, and returns with his daughter just as the portal shrinks and disappears, leaving only the chalk outline.

It is this outline, surrounding red bricks in the exit to the Tower of Terror, which exists as a clever homage to the 1962 episode. Little Girl Lost, with its limited cast, small set, and minute effects is a great example of how The Twilight Zone emphasized story over jump scares to create truly eerie view experiences. It is this dedication to storytelling, a passion shared by Imagineering and Rod Serling, which sets the attraction and show intangibly above many of their peers. Or, as it is put in Serling’s closing of the episode, “Despite a battery of research physicists equipped with every device known to man, electronic and otherwise, no result was ever achieved, except perhaps a little more respect for and uncertainty about the mechanisms of the Twilight Zone.

1 comment:

Dean Finder said...

Also parodied beautifully in a Simpsons Treehouse of Horror