The Twilife Zone
It’s Kid’s Radio time again at Whit’s End, and Connie narrates an unusual story. A young boy is walking to school one day when a friend coaxes him into an alley. The friend shows him something unusual: a talking toy chicken who tells goofy jokes. The young boy, played by Sam Johnson, is intrigued by the chicken. He ends up meeting the friend, played by Rusty Gordon, after school at a secret location. There, a bunch of boys are gathered to hear more from this chicken.
Simon (Sam) is so intrigued, he begs Russel (Rusty) to let him have a chicken of his own. Russel agrees to do this, for a price. Simon pays it. But soon, he becomes addicted to the chicken! He can’t even go to school without listening to its goofy jokes and hearing the chicken’s recorded voice say, “I like you. You’re my best friend.”
Eventually, Simon has to miss out on spending time with his friends so he can be with Henny (the chicken) alone. Henny becomes such a hamper on Simon’s life that Simon tells him he’s going to keep him put away from then on. At least, until Henny says, “Please don’t leave me, Simon. I need you.” Simon can’t believe it! Henny remarks that he can keep coming to life for Simon, but only if Simon does everything Henny tells him to do, like buying doll clothes and stealing things. One of the things Henny wants Simon to do is steal some money from a school fund-raiser!
Simon nearly gives in, but he is rescued in the nick of time by his good friend, and his conscience! He finally sees the light and rejects Henny for what he is: a sick addiction, which destroys people.
- When Rusty wanted Sam to try out the chicken, what should Sam have done?
- Why did Rusty tell Sam to keep Henny a secret?
- Why was Sam so hooked on Henny?
- What should you do if anyone ever offers you drugs?
- How could you help a friend who was on drugs?
PARENTAL WARNING: This episode is about the dangers of addiction. Although presented in a comical and non-threatening way, we suggest you listen with your children and use the episode as an opportunity to discuss the subject of drug abuse with them.
- Although this episode marks the first appearance of the “Twilife Zone” (a parody of the TV show The Twilight Zone) on Kids' Radio, the format first appeared in Odyssey in Robyn Jacobs's dream in the episode #119: “Better Late than Never”, which itself was a remake of the same incident in #14: “Missed It By That Much” — an even earlier episode.
- The first draft of this show had a much darker plot where Courtney Vincent was addicted to a talking doll named "Mary Jane" — a popular name for a drug. It was changed because the staff at AIO thought that it might scare kids away from playing with their action figures and dolls.
- This is the first episode to feature the character of Rusty (or Russel in this episode, technically) in the role of an underground dealer to the kids at school. He would serve in a similar capacity to Charles Thompson in #307: “Poetry in Slow Motion”.
- Gabriel Encarnacion's voice has begun to change by the time of this episode.
- Henny is credited in this episode to "Philonous Voce" — a pseudonym for Phil Lollar.
QuotesHenny: I have a friend who talks so much, when she goes to the beach her tongue gets sunburn.
Henny: Is that your face, or did your neck blow a bubble?
Henny: Know what you get when you cross a cow with a porcupine? A steak with a built in tooth pick. Bawk, bawk bawk bok bok!
Simon: I know it's silly, Henny. You're just a toy. But there's something about you that makes me feel good.