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Revenge of the Dark Half

Review of the Psi Factor episode
"All Hallow's Eve", December 19, 1999

By Bob King of the Firewheel Collective

Likely a repeat, it was a Halloween theme.

Plot as follows: Psi Factor is called in to deal with a pair of murders, where the skin is ripped off the faces of the living victims by brute force.

This being psi factor, this doesn't strike anyone as being unusually unusual, and seem much comforted by the presence of cold spots and high concentrations of freon. Although I would have thought that concentrations of freon would explain the quickly fading cold spots, but that's beside the point.

Anyway, it just so HAPPENS that one of the victims is reading a book.. well, was reading.. and it turns out to be by this woman ... [played by, God help us, Linda Blair. - Ed.]

---ok--- spoiler warning, if you care....

Right. The woman is the author. She's also a (gasp!) Multiple Personality. This becomes obvious when a sleazy trick is used to get her to admit on television that "Jack" wrote the novel, which the killings have so far duplicated right down to the cover art.

At this point I turned it off for a bit. But after howling my outrage at Astraea via ICQ - not ANOTHER psychotic multiple killer, spare us! - I flipped it back on.

That's when it got interesting. It turns out that Jack was able to leave the body and inhabit that of a paraplegic, who'd been crippled by a Jock Prank in the same school the woman had attended. She'd witnessed it, and it had been part of "her crowd" that had done it. Oh, and he was a geek.

Ok, geek revenge on Jocks, I can get behind this. Jack is able to make the crippled body walk, by the way. Impressive bit of disembodied spirit work.

Anyway, it all leads to the inevitable climax and triumph of the Psi Factor team. However, I was pleased by the way the multiple handled it, by taking responsibility for their dark personality and calling that person home, with great insistence.

Of course, since the murders had been committed by a spirit in another body entirely, she was able to walk away scott free, but it was demonstrated that she did take moral responsibility...

and then they said it. The "I" word. "In order to get better, the doctors say I have to "integrate."

This is a collective that has written a children's story, a fundamental text on mathematics, a bodice ripper and an intricately plotted horror story, along with a travelogue. A very successful author - and she's gonna toss that all away to be "normal?"

Let's not mention the fact that she was able to demonstrate in front of gumment agents that she was able to project a personality and take over a distant host, overriding a crippled body in order to rip off the victims' faces, incidentally frying every bit of electronics within a hundred feet.

And they let her walk away, much less nod approvingly at the idea of "integration?"

Oh, I think not.

In this case, Ewan Cameron would trump Colin Ross in the minds of the authorities as being the right witch-doctor-in-spirit. :>

At least they called it "Multiple Personality Disorder," not DID. And the multiple was high functioning, well, other than the obvious exception.

Anyway, it's one of the better treatments I've seen in fiction. Which is pathetic, considering everything. But there you go.


Bob King ICQ#: 12880485

You may read another synopsis of this episode at

You can write to Pavilion at pavilion@ karitas . net. Back to the library
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