While on a field trip with Will, Penny and the Robot, Dr. Smith comes across a strange machine. Ignoring the Robot’s warnings, he manipulates its controls and inadvertently materializes a female android. The android says her name is Verda, and that Smith ordered her from the Intergalactic Department Store. She is now tuned to his psychic frequency and will serve him forever.
Meanwhile Don and John drill for deutronium and happen to notice some very odd footprints beside a cave nearby. They assume some sort of dangerous creature must live there and put up signs to warn everyone away from the area, and then head back to the spaceship to question Verda.
Verda seems a bit strange to the Robinsons, but harmless and really quite pleasant. She establishes a strong bond with the children, especially Penny. Smith, however, does not like her, and the Robot feels jealous of her knowledge and abilities.
They decide to find a way to get rid of her. When they cannot use the machine to send her back where she came from, Smith decides on a more savage way to get the job done—by luring her to the monster’s cave, where she will be destroyed or, at the very least, frightened away.
Verda takes Penny and Will on a nature walk and is drawn to the cave as Smith planned. The monster attacks, and Verda protects the children at the risk of her own life--something she is not programmed to do.
As this is going on, the Robot and Smith experiment further with the machine, resulting in Dr. Smith being clothed in a silly costume he cannot remove. Their actions also summon a spacecraft with two passengers. One of the men introduces himself as Mr. Zumdish, the complaints manager for the Intergalactic Department Store.
Smith insists Zumdish give him his regular clothes back and then requests that he take Verda. Zumdish presents Smith with a large bill and requests payment for the android. Smith refuses, and Zumdish becomes angry, saying Smith will be arrested. Smith avoids trouble by claiming Verda is defective, and Zumdish agrees to look into it.
When Mr. Zumdish inspects Verda, he finds that there is indeed something odd about her. He says he will take her back, but when it is discovered that Verda will be disassembled and melted down, Penny cries and begs her father to save the android. The family votes to save Verda, trading their deutronium as payment since they have no currency. Mr. Zumdish agrees, but Penny is afraid he may change his mind and runs away with Verda.
Zumdish’s guard chases them and tries to attack Penny. Verda, contrary to her programming, is set to throw a rock at Zumdish's security guard. Not only that, but she offers to go back with Zumdish in order to save the Robinsons from sacrificing their fuel, again being willing to sacrifice herself for the good of others. Zumdish realizes that if Verda has developed so far, then she must be far more valuable then he thought. He decides to take her away with him, promising that she will not be melted down, but instead, will go on to do very important work. Verda agrees to go along, and bids the Robinsons a fond farewell.
Background Information Edit
- Actress Dee Hartford portrays Verda.
- This is the first appearance of Verda and Mr. Zumdish, who will both return to the show (Mr Zumdish for a total of three episodes,Verda for a total of two- although Dee Hartford would return in the third season episode Space Beauty, playing the manager of Farnum B, Nancy Pi Squared.).
- Deutronium is revealed to be an intergalactic currency- although, according to Mr Zumdish, the Robinsons' refinery methods are crude and their stock would have to be processed many times for it to have any value. Despite deutronium shown being made by "concentrating certain radioactive ores" in "Attack of the Monster Plants," the liquid can apparently be handled (and even sniffed) without any special precautions.
- The ordering machine would appear again in The Toymaker
- Mr Zumdish is played by the much-loved character actor Fritz Feld, who was well known for playing fussy managerial types. His trademark, making a 'pop' sound with his hand against his mouth, is repeated in all his Lost in Space appearances.
- Verda arrives, saying she belongs to Smith and will willingly serve him forever. In the episode “Wish Upon a Star” Smith claimed he would like to have a slave and tried to create one. But when Verda appears, instead of being pleased, Smith screams and runs away from her.
- The scary cave monster never actually attacks. Rather, he lurches into view, and stands with his arms spread, waiting for someone to shoot him. He’s really more of a suicidal scary monster.
- Verda: "You are equipped with Model 56 Tauron computer, are you not?" Robot: "My computer is the best on Earth, analogue and digital." Verda: "That's too bad. But at least you're programmed for intergalactic history, are you not?" Robot: "Well, no but..." Verda: "Andromedian geometry? The calculus of Orion? The anti-gravity theory of Gimis?" Robot: "I can lift heavy things."