"In Another Life" is an episode of The Outer Limits television show. It was first broadcast on February 20, 1998, during the fourth season.
- “Do we have the power to shape our lives or are we predestined to be who we are? If our Fate is but one amongst many, then whose life, if anyone's, is real?”
Mason Stark, a project manager for a company called Eigenphase, hates his life. A year ago, his wife Kristin was killed by a mugger's bullet; Mason still blames himself for failing to protect her. His depression continued to worsen, and today he was fired from his job. Mason is given a generous severance package, but in the privacy of his office he produces a gun - and contemplates killing either himself, or his coworkers. But before he can do either, Mason becomes disoriented and vanishes, finding himself in a parallel universe - one where dozens of duplicates of himself are imprisoned in an Eigenphase lab. His counterpart indigenous to this universe is the CEO of the company.
This version of Stark explains that he built a machine called the Quantum Mirror, to explore all those different versions of himself. However, his experiments quickly turned to disaster - one of his counterparts is actually an insane killer, who murdered this Mason's entire family. And Mason - the first version we met - has been enlisted to stop the killer. To that end, Stark promises to reunite the first Mason with Kristin - specifically, her counterpart in this universe - as his reward.
Mason quickly learns that things are not as they seem. He is confronted by his killer counterpart, who he learns is actually much like himself, apart from one fundamental difference: this Mason made the choice to burst out of his office and murder all of his coworkers at Eigenphase. Now that the killer Mason has found himself in another universe, he has decided to put things the way he thinks they should be - by murdering all of the counterparts of the people he originally killed. The murderous Mason claims that he knows the truth about why they, and all of their counterparts, were brought here: the Mason of this universe, for all of his wealth and power, hates his own life as well - and was looking for a version of himself who was happy, and whom he could replace. (The killer Mason appeared happiest of all the duplicates, so he was chosen.)
Both of these versions of Mason return to Eigenphase and confront their powerful counterpart. A fight breaks out, and two of the Masons - the one who killed, and the CEO version from this universe - are trapped in the Quantum Mirror, which activates, sending them to other universes...
- The killer Mason appears in the original Mason's universe from the beginning of the episode. He shoots himself in the head and dies. His coworkers, discovering the body, wonder why he is so badly scarred...
- The CEO Mason is sent to the universe of his killer counterpart, where he is shot to death by police.
In the end, the original Mason is left to take the place of his counterpart as CEO of Eigenphase. He meets the local version of Kristin, and the two strike up a friendship...
- “If our lives are indeed the sum total of the choices we've made, then we cannot change who we are. But with every new choice we're given, we can change who we're going to be.”
Identical twin actors Mitchell Laurance
and Matthew Laurance
played the various versions of Stark in this episode. Which versions they played depended largely on the specific scenes (as various combinations of Stark appeared together); generally, Mitchell played the 'normal', protagonist version of Stark, whereas Matthew played the 'killer' and 'CEO' versions.