Musings in the Dark: My Twilight Zone Tribute: S3E9


My Twilight Zone Tribute: S3E9

"Deaths-Head Revisited"

The episode opens with Gunther Lutze checking into a hotel in Bavaria.  Lutze is a former SS captain.  The receptionist thinks she recognizes him but he deflects her inquiry by saying he served on the Eastern front and makes her tell him why the Nazis were in Dachau.  After checking in, he goes to the Dachau concentration camp to relive his days when he commanded the camp and tortured the inmates.  

While walking around, Lutze is surprised to see Alfred Becker, one of the camp’s inmates and a man who Lutze revelled in torturing.  Lutze remarks that Becker hasn’t changed in 17 years and asks if he is the caretaker.  Becker says that he is the caretaker, “in a manner of speaking.”  Becker then reminds Lutze of his horribly inhumane behavior and Lutze counters with that old trope “I was just following orders!”  He tries to diminish Becker’s descriptions of how he and the other inmates suffered at Lutze’s hands by saying that the war has been over and he’s basically a different man.  He tries to leave, but Becker is having none of that shit.  He tells Lutze that he’s on trial for crimes against humanity; one of them being that he murdered 1700 people and another being the forced experimentation on women and children...among many others.  

Lutze can’t handle the truth and passes out.  When he comes to, Becker tells him that he was declared guilty. Lutze then recalls that he killed Becker 17 years ago, the night that the US troops were going to liberate the camp. Becker pronounces Lutze’s sentence, which is to suffer in all the ways he made others suffer.  The illusions Lutze experiences are very real in his mind and he quickly goes insane with the pain, which is also very real to him.  

Locals find Lutze and have him taken to a mental hospital, where he will live out the rest of his life experiencing the horror he inflicted on others.  The locals--one being the taxi driver who dropped Lutze off--question how a man who had been perfectly calm earlier could go batshit insane in two hours.

This episode is hard to watch at times, especially if you have an imagination like mine.  Becker’s descriptions of how he was tortured and eventually murdered at the hands of Lutze are chilling.  And the fact that Lutze actually tried to hug Becker when he realized who he was...ugh!  

I like this episode because that evil asshole Lutze got just what he deserved.  Definitely a stand-out.  

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