In “Time Enough At Last”, the themes of solitude and one’s true passions are touched on through Henry Bemis, a bank teller whose deep love for books is suffocated by an anti-reading world. Bemis eventually gains the time to dedicate to this hobby, and loses it just as quickly. The thought of a man so eager to indulge in his interests that he would forego work made me think of what would occur if something similar happened to another individual of the reverse mind-set.
In an alternate episode, Bemis is an affluent business man at a respected shipping company in the 21st century. Deeply dedicated to his work and his desire to stay the best, Henry works anywhere, non-stop, shutting out the world. His work becomes an addiction, so much so that his family and friends continuously pester him to take a well-earned break. He turns a deaf ear to all of their complaints, often insisting on continuing work out of the office in secret, until the sudden testing of an atomic bomb goes awry. The world is completely wiped out, and Bemis is the only remaining survivor. Rejoicing in his luck, he spends the rest of his days typing away at a computer and going over paperwork, though it is obvious that there is technically nothing to work towards. In the end, once the electricity stops and nothing else seems to need to be done, Henry finds himself lonely and aimless, itching to do something. The episode ends with the unfortunate survivor walking as he slowly descends into madness, incessantly asking “What for?”.
I decided to make a 360-degree change in Bemis’ personality because it’s interesting to understand how solitude plays into the chase after one’s passions. Whether it’s an extremely determined workaholic or a simple, whimsical book lover, the show pushes the viewer to think about how far a person will go to do what he wants, and what it all means in the end.