I think it was an episode from The Outer Limits, or maybe The Twilight Zone. I think I watched it in the 90s, very likely in color.

I had a look at the episode descriptions for The Outer Limits of the 90s on Wikipedia but found no apparent match.

What I seem to remember is that some guy's well-being affected the world or universe he was living in, and he tried to tell everybody but nobody believed him until his condition deteriorated, causing the world to break down and (almost?) starting the apocalypse.

Which TV show episode or movie was that?

  • 1
    There's a Laumer story "Prototaph" in which the world will end when the protagonist dies. But I did not find any evidence of it being filmed. Commented Feb 6, 2021 at 20:39
  • The Phillip K Dick story that Total Recall is based on features a character whose kindness towards invading aliens caused the aliens to delay their invasion until the character dies. So once he dies, the aliens will come back and kill all the humans. Commented Feb 7, 2021 at 0:29

2 Answers 2


This could an episode of a 2002 TV series called 'Night Visions' titled 'Patterns'. Malcolm McDowell plays a shrink who counsels a man who believes that the whole universe will end if he stops performing little personal rituals every day. The doctor talks him out of it and reality immediately begins to come apart, forcing the doctor to start performing the rituals.

  • Shades of "The Nine Billion Names of God" there.
    – G_B
    Commented Feb 7, 2021 at 2:26
  • Thank you, this looks similar in premise but doesn't seem to match what I had in mind
    – Arc
    Commented Feb 7, 2021 at 8:09
  • Malcolm McDowell plays the patient, not the shrink. Commented Jan 8 at 23:44

That's the first episode of the third season of 1985 revival of The Twilight Zone, "The Curious Case of Edgar Whiterspoon".

Edgar is an old man that has a sort of Rube Goldberg machine on his apartment, that he claims "keeps the balance of the world".

The episode is available on Youtube

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