Original Story by Lynn Barker
Directed by Tommy Lee Wallace
Original Airdate - October 18, 1985
Season Hubley - Carol Shelton
Nicolas Surovy - Greg
Scott Grimes - Kenny
Nancy Kyes - Frumpy Housewife



Carol Shelton is a professional photographer who has just been offered a promotion to a world-wide beat, which means a lot of traveling.  She tells her fiance about her offer.  He’s okay with her news until she tells him she doesn’t want to start a family right away, since she doesn’t want to have her kids grow up while she’s on the road; she’d miss everything.  He gets angry, and stalks off. 

The next day, she’s at the zoo waiting for a child model who will pose with the animals, her current assignment.  A boy shows up, and when she asks him what his name is, he asks her to guess.  She guesses Kenny, and the boy says that’s it.  He seems very familiar to her, but she can’t place him.  They have a wonderful day at the zoo, and she asks a passerby to take a picture of her and the boy.  When Carol asks Kenny a personal question, he runs off and she doesn’t see him again that day.  When she gets home, the message on her phone says that the model for the photos couldn’t show up that day.  Now she’s really puzzled, wondering where the boy came from. 

The next day, she has a fight with her fiance, and tells him she just doesn’t want to start a family right now, and he calls off their engagement.  When she returns home, Kenny is waiting there, asking her why she is turning her back on her fiance.  Carol asks him about his parents, and the boy runs down the apartment corridor.  She runs after him, but when she turns a corner, there is no sign of the boy in the dead-end corridor.  Several days later, she has completely broken off contact with her fiance, and we are to assume the relationship is dead.  She sees Kenny in the park across from her apartment, and runs to catch him.  He asks her why she couldn’t choose him, and she realizes that he is the child she would have had if she’d turned down this job and gotten married.  Kenny slowly fades away.  At the end of the episode, Carol is off to the travel the world for her dream job, presumably less a woman for not having had children.

The song unsung, the wish unfulfiulled..Even with the dream in hand, there is the chill of an eternal loss, fading, fading. For every choice made, wrong or right, a thousand alternatives denied, when tomorrow calls sometimes the heart must be denied. For Carol Shelton, there will be other tomorrows, other joys, and yet, fading, fading, for one trembling instant she was given the opportunity to take snapshots of an alternate future. Snapshots forever undeveloped, in the darkness of the Twilight Zone.



This is the one episode I really can’t stand; I even like “A Little Peace and Quiet” better.  Everything about “Little Boy Lost” is a chauvinistic cliché; the lines, the scenes, and the plot. Carol’s fiance talks about his world being more important than her dream job, and expects her to just say, OK, honey, I’ll give up a life of world travel to cook, clean, and change diapers for you.  And then, the single most assinine scene in the episode is played in the zoo. Carol is watching a mother fighting with her two kids, and when she says “It must be tough”, the mother says “Yes, but it’s worth it”!  I'm reminded of the scene in "Airplane," where the wife says, "At least I have a husband," whenever I think of this episode; at least in "Airplane" it was funny.  Suffice to say, in my opinion this is an episode at the bottom of the barrel; it ranks with the third season entries, and was, thank god, an extreme rarity in the first and second season.