The place is here, the time is now, and the journey into the shadows that we’re about to watch could be our journey.
Street scene: Summer. The present. Man on a sidewalk named Lew Bookman, age sixtyish. Occupation: Pitchman. Lew Bookman, a fixture of the summer, a rather minor component to a hot July; a nondescript, commonplace little man whose life is a treadmill built out of sidewalks. In just a moment, Lew Bookman will have to concern himself with survival, because as of three o'clock this hot July afternoon he'll be stalked by Mr. Death.
Portrait of a town drunk named Al Denton. This is a man who has begun his dying early; a long agonizing route through a maze of bottles. Al Denton, who would probably give an arm or a leg or a part of his soul to have another chance, to be able to rise up and shake the dirt from his body and the bad dreams that infest his consciousness. In the parlance of the times, this is a peddler, a rather fanciful-looking little man in a black frock coat. And this is the third principal character of our story. Its function? Perhaps to give Mister Al Denton his second chance.
May 2, 2010, 3:22 a.m. CST
it's pretty good, too. There's an episode about an earwig that is pretty great.
May 2, 2010, 3:24 a.m. CST
The best stories, the best writing...period. Rod Serling was a genius.
May 2, 2010, 3:31 a.m. CST
I know it's a ballsy statement, but it's my opinion. I love Twilight Zone. This was Serling at his writing peak - no one came close to his brilliance. This is a true gem of a show that was so ahead of its time. There's nothing on TV today that can hold a candle to this masterpiece of a show.
May 2, 2010, 3:38 a.m. CST
Hell, I'm about to be 39 years old and I still get the shivers when I hear the iconic theme music. A lot of these are best watched at night, but I have a hard time doing it. I've been DVR'ing these from SyFy late at night lately. Thanks for this, Quint.
May 2, 2010, 3:46 a.m. CST
by mr teaspoon
May 2, 2010, 3:57 a.m. CST
by Bob Loblaw Law Blog
I bought this set a while back, but I didn't start in order (I've just been watching my favorites). I think I will have to do so now so I can keep up with you! <p> Also, if you're interested, here's two great books I got that details all of the episodes. They make for a great companion guides while watching. <p> The Twilight Zone Companion - http://amzn.to/c5Ms6b <p> The Twilight Zone: Unlocking the Door to a Television Classic - http://amzn.to/9cWFV9
May 2, 2010, 4:32 a.m. CST
by Ronald Raygun
Since we're on the topic, it's something I've always wondered. Is it an actual alternate dimension that people get trapped in, or is it a god-like force that dishes out ironic justice to cruel and negligant people? Or is it just a collection of science fiction/horror stories collected under the title "Twilight Zone"?
May 2, 2010, 4:42 a.m. CST
I really hope this is going to become a recurrent feature Quint. I love the TZ (my favorite episode is "time enough at last!")
May 2, 2010, 4:44 a.m. CST
May 2, 2010, 4:51 a.m. CST
It's your party, it's your charter.
May 2, 2010, 4:52 a.m. CST
... the name of a TV series (three, actually). Beyond that there isn't a set and defined entity named "The Twilight Zone" in the series. Just, basically, if life take a hard left turn into the weird and impossible, you are in the Twilight Zone.<br><br> Love the idea, Quint. Big fan of TZ. Even a fan of the 80s Zone which had a lot of missteps but also some great moments too. Watching the DVDs for that show I loved the producers explaining how the 80s Zone got really good ratings... until they did the episode where they murdered a cute moppet and brought a nightmare version fo Viet Nam to a charming diner with all hell breaking loose. Funny, that was one of my favorite episodes. Hehehe.<br><br> I do see one possible worry with this series of articles though. Quite a number of Twilight Zone episodes (almost all of them) are built with the idea of a surprise twist to he story. When I was a kid I went TZ nuts and spoiled every ep for myself by devouring the Twilight Zone Companion episode guide. My concern is that while you are wonderfully pointing potential new viewers to the show, based on this first article you'll also be doing a lot of spoiling. Not sure how you can avoid that but that fact did jump to mind.
May 2, 2010, 4:56 a.m. CST
Back in the day, some friends and I pitched in to buy TZ on VHS from the Columbia House Video Club. Every month we sit down to watch the newest tape. I knew all the episodes and I assumed my friends new the twists to the more famous episodes. So then we sit down to watch Time Enough At Last. The final ironic twist comes and my one friend... he just stars HOWLING with laughter. For like three minutes. It was just such a petty cruel twist it killed him. Then the rest of us started laughing just because we were so shocked by his reaction.
May 2, 2010, 5:22 a.m. CST
I assume this is the collected version of the box sets I was buying two or three years ago. Lovingly restored with some very nice added features. What is the Twilight Zone, guys? It's a state of mind. A TZ story can happen any time anywhere, hence there are war stories, westerns, some romance, sci-fi, horror fantasy. Some are pretty heavy, others are pleasanly whimsical. Basically there's a TZ tale for every mood or state of mind. They are, in my mind the embodiment of timeless classics.
May 2, 2010, 5:30 a.m. CST
by Kevin Holsinger
Guy on Death Row claims that the world around him is nothing more than a recurring nightmare that ends with his execution.<P>I have to thank all those 24-hour marathons on the old WB and Sci-Fi Channel for getting me into this show.
May 2, 2010, 5:51 a.m. CST
by Rocco Curioso
maybe the best is that even though it ran from 1959 to 1964, very little of it feels dated. Sterling be praised eternally for knowing how to tap into a great many archetypal human fears.<P>Have at it, Quint. Go the distance with this one, and don't forget "Nightmare At 20,000 Feet". Bill Shatner vs. the gremlin was both spooky and an undeniable hoot!
May 2, 2010, 5:53 a.m. CST
I was just about to write a piece to slag this column off, as a massive fan of TZ I dont feel the need for it. It spoils TZ for the un-initiated and re-iterates what the ardent fan knows..... BUT THEN ITS TWILIGHT ZONE and ITS FUCKING COOL! keep up the good work. If it gets one person to download it or buy it and experience the best and most influential show ever. YOU HAVE SUCCEEDED
May 2, 2010, 5:57 a.m. CST
The monsters are due on Maple Street
May 2, 2010, 6:08 a.m. CST
depicts a man and his hound dog drowning while raccon hunting. He wanders in limbo (not realizing he is dead even though everyone else does.) He wanders to what we assume is a manifestation of the pearly gate and st Peter. The "St Peter" says there is no coon hunting here and no dogs allowed. He offers to walk the dog down the road to eternity to the "dog heaven". The dog starts barking at him, and his owner just decides to take him down the other path. The real St Peter meets him and says "The huntings fine, your dog can come in too. Your wife will be along soon." The dog had saved him from accidentally going into hell because he smelled the brimstone. "Lucky you had that dog with you..."
May 2, 2010, 6:15 a.m. CST
see you sticking to it dude. You'll probably take a break at the end of season 1 or 2, then never get back to it.
May 2, 2010, 6:23 a.m. CST
Keep it up. And check a book called the Twilight Zone Companion. I examines everything TZ, and gives analysis and production info.
May 2, 2010, 6:26 a.m. CST
WIth some of the best writers, Bradbury, Ellison, MAtheson, and of course Serling, who EVER wrote for TV.
May 2, 2010, 6:29 a.m. CST
May 2, 2010, 6:31 a.m. CST
I read every damn word of this article,and enjoyed doing so. I love love LOVE me some TZ, I own this definitive boxed set myself, and there's still a slew of episodes I haven't watched (& speaking of AH Presents, I own season 1 of that as well, have viewed probably about half of it).
May 2, 2010, 6:52 a.m. CST
One of the best episodes to a show ive ever seen. I don't know the titles of the episode but it's the one where the people in this small town think a nuclear bomb is going to go off and this one guy and his family are the only ones in the neighbourhood with a bomb shelter so he takes his family in and locks the door on the rest of the town folk. Now the towns people get a mob mentalilty and start going insane resulting in a few deaths and then we fnd out the nuclear bomb scare was a test and not real. Damn anyone know what the title of this episode is called? It has some of the very best writing/acting that I've ever witnessed. Best episode ever. Anyone with the title would be a great help. thanks
May 2, 2010, 7:09 a.m. CST
I watched the entire First Season of the definitive collection a couple years ago so I'm certainly curious to see your reactions. I haven't cracked the Second season yet though it's on a more immediate "to watch" stack. I'd concentrate on the first season before committing to the entire series up front. See how everybody feels at that point. The Twilight Zone is one of the few series worthy of a modern day episode by episode review. It's a great idea.<p> Of these three episodes, "Where Is Everybody?" is my favorite. The creepy mood of stillness and isolation is very effective. I basically agree with the positive things you say. Having the pilot show of a series being one guy alone talking to himself is very daring. Maybe only Serling could have pulled it off with flying colors.
May 2, 2010, 7:15 a.m. CST
Shockingly I've seen all three of these before. Had no idea they were the first three ever. Keep it up!
May 2, 2010, 7:23 a.m. CST
May 2, 2010, 7:34 a.m. CST
Actually, it just occurred to me that I can't wait to see Quint's take on what, to me, are the two most enjoyably flawed episodes. First, Mute, which has a Bizzaro World version of a happy ending. Just everything with the ending is creepy and bad but they really try and sell it as a happy happy ending with no irony to it at all. The other is... I think it's Little Girl Lost. Mostly good but one of the funniest cut-to-the-chase starts ever. Couple discovers their daughter is not in her room but they can still hear her. Almost instantly the dad says, "Well lets check X, Y and Z but,,, you know what? Our next door neighbor is a scientist. We should bring him over just in case maybe she rolled out of bed and into a parallel dimension." I know they just needed to get to the meat of the story fast but... what kind of parent jumps right to THAT as a possibility when their kid is missing for 5 minutes? What parent would EVER jump to that being possible at all. So crazy bad I actually enjoy it. I laugh every time.
May 2, 2010, 7:38 a.m. CST
You can already pre-order it on amazon.com $70.
May 2, 2010, 7:46 a.m. CST
Please keep the opening Serling speech for each episode. Poetic language, makes me want to read a Bradbury story.
May 2, 2010, 7:48 a.m. CST
is the one were the old lady keeps getting phone calls in the middle of the night. The calls are just random groans and moaning. She freaks out and tells the caller to leave her alone. The next morning she goes to her husbands grave and finds a phone line had fallen onto his grave and it was her dead husband trying to call her. That one really creeped me out as a kid.
May 2, 2010, 7:50 a.m. CST
The only gripe is that you can't watch all the episodes straight through, unless I'm missing something. <P> When I see people watching shit like reality television or drivel like NCIS, I like to remind them that scripted shows used to be king, and scripted shows used to be awesome.<P> The Twilight Zone was definitely one of the awesome ones.
May 2, 2010, 7:51 a.m. CST
Saw a grabbag of episodes as a kid growing up, but I've never sat down and worked through the whole thing start to finish. I just may now. (Off to Netflix.)
May 2, 2010, 7:53 a.m. CST
I remember the first time I saw this episode as a kid. I must have been about 11 or so. My younger brother and I were up WAY past bed time and when that last 30 seconds hit, well, there was no sleeping that night.
May 2, 2010, 7:56 a.m. CST
I just bought the whole set, on DVD, for just over $100. I think I'll wait until the whole series hits blu, and then I'll think about upgrading.
May 2, 2010, 8:06 a.m. CST
..."The Shelter." Jack Albertson from Willy Wonka and Chico and the Man is in it. Nobody dies in it. It's not really that good an episode, IMO. Characters alternate back and forth between objecting to becoming a mob, and then turning around and joining the mob. It's essentially a non-fantastic/sf version of the much superior "Monsters Are Due on Maple Street."<p> As for "One for the Angels," it's a sweet episode, but even Wynn conceded that he was miscast for the part, and he was right. They wanted a fast-speaking salesman, and Wynn didn't feel his somewhat lisping, slow-pitched cadence was right for the part.<p> "Mr. Denton" is arguably a stronger one. For one thing, the opening sequence is painful to watch, with the Denton actor able to perfectly portray a man who has reached rock bottom. It's pretty much a classic Western other than the unexplained Fate element. And Serling revisited the genre a few times: it seemed to be a favorite period of his.<p> As far as doing the entire series, unfortunately that means you have to do the fifth season, where there are a number of dogs. When Serling was good, he was very very good. When he was bad, trying to push around 2-dimensional characters just to spout a message (and "The Shelter" is one such episode, although season 2 or 3), he was very very bad.
May 2, 2010, 8:20 a.m. CST
... the series is called "At the edges (or borders) of reality"
May 2, 2010, 8:21 a.m. CST
by Happy Killmore
Love this show!!! This will be a great way to revisit the series.
May 2, 2010, 8:26 a.m. CST
Maybe spending an hour, hour and a half on a few episodes, that you can split up throughout the day is probably easier to do than to set aside a two hour block to watch a film. If this is regular I'll keep checking in.
May 2, 2010, 8:27 a.m. CST
Am going to start a marathon of my own and compare my impressions with yours and of other TBers.
May 2, 2010, 8:33 a.m. CST
If you do manage to get through all of these Twilight Zone episodes I'd imagine you'd be a little burnt out on TZ.
May 2, 2010, 8:42 a.m. CST
Twilight is of course the line between night and day. Human beings have always found that the lines, the moments or places that separate things (liminality) to be the scariest as they raise the most uncertainty. Transitions make us anxious, in general. In life we mark those points with rituals in order to get the favor of God or the gods--baptism, confirmation/bar mitzvah, marriage,last rites, etc. Our everyday superstitions also relate to this liminality. 12 midnight is the witching hour. The days that mark the seasonal changes have rituals or traditions related to the breakdowns of lines that separate. New years eve has lots of superstitions too. Thus the Twilight Zone as a series explored those lines and many others--the line between sanity and insanity, reality and fantasy, life and death, etc. etc. The zone then is the place where all of it possible the imagination in which there does not have to be any lines to separate anything. It was a great show and I think it will stand the long test of time as a classic. My favorite episode? The Monsters are Due on Maple Street.
May 2, 2010, 8:47 a.m. CST
May 2, 2010, 8:48 a.m. CST
I wish there were still anthology shows on TV like this. It seemed like a great place for writers, directors, actors, etc. to get started. Screw the mythology shows!
May 2, 2010, 8:50 a.m. CST
so far ahead of its time, no one will ever be able to catch up. Rod Serling was amazing. Good article Quint.
May 2, 2010, 9:03 a.m. CST
He made no secret that Blazing Saddles was a parody where he borrowed bits from various classic sources (Madeline Kahn doing Marlene Dietrich from Destry Rides Again being the most obvious example).
May 2, 2010, 9:12 a.m. CST
by Dollar Bird
May 2, 2010, 9:12 a.m. CST
by Dollar Bird
May 2, 2010, 9:13 a.m. CST
by Dollar Bird
Double blank post? Sorry guys. Anyways...keep it up, Quint. I love the show—perhaps my favorite show of all. It's fun to revisit the series with someone who may be seeing things with fresher eyes than mine.
May 2, 2010, 9:37 a.m. CST
by David Cloverfield
God, I love that ep for all of it's silliness.
May 2, 2010, 9:44 a.m. CST
Whenever there's a marathon on Sci-Fi, like Thanksgiving or whatnot, you can find me in front of a TV. I love love LOVE the Twilight Zone, and this is a superb idea.
May 2, 2010, 9:52 a.m. CST
May 2, 2010, 9:54 a.m. CST
is the TZ episode that creeped me out the most as a kid. It had me touching the walls of my room looking for invisible openings for a month. It definitly inspired Poltergeist.
May 2, 2010, 10:03 a.m. CST
Would like to revisit these. My wife hasn't seen hardly any episodes.
May 2, 2010, 10:06 a.m. CST
Rod Serling is a personal hero of mine. Anyhoo, nice to see a column devoted to the Zone...of the three reviewed here, "Where is Everybody" would be my favorite. A great start to a great show.
May 2, 2010, 10:14 a.m. CST
Good point, sir. <p> After Poltergeist, Speilberg was involved in something called, "Twilight Zone: the Movie". <p> It may just be a coincidence though...
May 2, 2010, 10:39 a.m. CST
by Six Demon Bag
Always liked your series of reviews
May 2, 2010, 10:47 a.m. CST
I know the one you mean. I don't want to sound like a patronising a-hole, but it was called "The Shelter".
May 2, 2010, 10:58 a.m. CST
Always thought "Fear Itself" was underrated.
May 2, 2010, 11:20 a.m. CST
I've pretty much given up on buying physical media, but this is something I'd like. What do you folks think of the extras on here? I'd love to listen to the commentary on some of these. I find it hard to do anything but watch TV on holidays when scifi runs the marathons.
May 2, 2010, 11:32 a.m. CST
some are illuminating, some rather uninteresting. Depends on the episode. But overall, it's definitely a worthwhile buy.
May 2, 2010, 11:44 a.m. CST
I think you should definitely keep these up. I love TZ but never bought any of the DVDs. So I'm sure I missed some but I've seen most of the ones that have been on TV. Out of these three I like "Where is Everybody?" by far. I never liked "One for the Angels", too cute for me. And as much as I love Dan Duryea (watch BLACK ANGEL) I don't really like any of the western themed TZs, except for the one with Lee Marvin oddly enough. "Where is Everybody?" is such a great pilot because it really sets the bar and makes you feel what the entire series is going to be. It's definitely in the running for all-time best pilot episodes.
May 2, 2010, 11:51 a.m. CST
by Larry of Arabia
This reminds me of what they do over at the AVClub's TV section, and it has the same high quality of writing. Great work.
May 2, 2010, 11:53 a.m. CST
Anybody who disagrees with this statement is obviously too hopelessly dense to ever be taken seriously, anyway.
May 2, 2010, 12:03 p.m. CST
In my opinion by describing TZ in their review as having filmed the plots of most good sci-fi fantasy films not only earlier but better. I don't own the set but always watch them on sci-fi when possible. TZ never gets old.
May 2, 2010, 12:18 p.m. CST
If I stumble upon a Twilight Zone episode I can't help but watch it. VERY VERY creepy watching as a kid. Nothing comes close to "atmosphere" of 'da zone!
May 2, 2010, 12:21 p.m. CST
"The Time Element" isn't on the dvd set, but it's (arguably) the real pilot for Twilight Zone:<p> http://www.tvparty.com/unseentwilight.html <p> (remove spaces if any)
May 2, 2010, 12:23 p.m. CST
May 2, 2010, 12:30 p.m. CST
Not Serling's best, but still would have made a good "real" episode in the show (I guess in the 4th season, since it's an hour long)...
May 2, 2010, 12:41 p.m. CST
by GOB Adama
May 2, 2010, 12:59 p.m. CST
And one of the greatest things about it is that it's a product of real *craft*. Excellent actors doing their best work, wonderful sets and lighting and costumes, all-time-classic writing, and consistently terrific music.<p>There's no faking it in the Twilight Zone. Each episode is like a play, depending entirely on the actors, writers, and creators of setting and mood. These days, almost all of TV is crammed with distracting graphics, moody barely-acting by generic young models, and tired cliches.<p>The Twilight Zone always has been, and always will be, the real deal.
May 2, 2010, 1:12 p.m. CST
May 2, 2010, 1:27 p.m. CST
Outer Limits, Alfred Hitchcock Presents and maybe x-files (although not an anthology, it had that feel.) I've also been debating getting the box set for Man from UNCLE. A bit pricey (130) but you get all 4 seasons and this show is never re-run for some reason except for the spliced together "movies". Not to get off topic but is UNCLE dated or is it still enjoyable. i'm 52 and can barely remember it. oh, and this TZ column is awesome. most excellent idea! keep it going! it's better than most of the hollywood dreck we keep getting these days....
May 2, 2010, 1:40 p.m. CST
... in the history of the medium. And despite being 50 years old, it is endlessly rewatchable. For the overwhelming part, beautifully shot, great passionate performances by great character actors of the caliber you don't see on television anymore, and the thread running through it all - Rod Serling's clear-as-a-bell literary voice, sounding the call for decency, morality, and the eternal worth of the human soul and value of individual liberty. One of the absolute greats. Nothing has touched it since.
May 2, 2010, 1:58 p.m. CST
There is a fifth dimension beyond that which is known to man. It is a dimension where evil sparkles like a disco ball. It is the middle ground between pedophilia and necrophilia, between pale anorexics and buff doggies, and it lies between the pit of Hollywood's slushpile and the summit of it's exploitation. This is the dimension without imagination. It is an area which we call the Twilight Movie Zone.
May 2, 2010, 2:12 p.m. CST
Would love to go thru this series here.
May 2, 2010, 2:24 p.m. CST
The only reason I can think of as to why AICN is posting all these Twilight articles is that there's a lot of creepy middle-aged men in AICN's audience who need to know what movies to see in order to sit in a room full of tweenaged girls.<p> This is a geek site! Why not post more articles on smart sci-fi stuff?
May 2, 2010, 2:25 p.m. CST
I like the regular columns. Not enough of that lately.
May 2, 2010, 2:36 p.m. CST
A hospital patient wakes in the middle of the night. She hears footsteps and, looking in the hallway, she sees the elevator doors close on a nurse. She follows her to the basement, sees the door to the morgue open, and the nurse looks out--Room for one more, honey...
May 2, 2010, 2:40 p.m. CST
THAT's the name of the episode. With Jonathan Harris as the doctor!
May 2, 2010, 2:40 p.m. CST
Saw it as a kid and loved it; great precursor to Christine but in a different way. The only good thing about SyFy is the marathon on New Year's.
May 2, 2010, 2:51 p.m. CST
It felt like they made it yesterday when I first watched it.
May 2, 2010, 3:05 p.m. CST
This is a great article. Your writing is miles ahead of other writers on this site. You should keep track of which eps are your favorite and perhaps compile a Top 10 list when you're through.
May 2, 2010, 3:40 p.m. CST
Twilight Zone marathon, possibly the greatest show ever. Love it
May 2, 2010, 3:48 p.m. CST
Notice a lot of the TZ sequels and clones plod through an hour to tell a story. Feels like draggy filler. The original TZ remained compact, efficient and taught--telling a tale in under 30 minutes.
May 2, 2010, 3:53 p.m. CST
..it will be harder to keep up, as the episodes are all out of sequence across 40+ discs, but I'll be fun trying because I am a massive fan of the show. So can you link the pages like you did for AMAD? Nice one sunshine.
May 2, 2010, 4:31 p.m. CST
because if not, you have the awareness level of a fucking bug.
May 2, 2010, 4:40 p.m. CST
by Gogo Bananas
Put Quint on Coaxial.
May 2, 2010, 4:40 p.m. CST
Its creative writing outside the norm. Those stories which man can dream up. Thats why at the start it says its a dimenion not of sight and sound, but of mind. Normal characters put in fantastic situations of which the resolution is often grim.
May 2, 2010, 4:55 p.m. CST
...this is my favorite all time show and it's always fun to read new perspectives on this ground breaking genre material still relevant plus 50 years after it's start. It sounds as if you're gonna experience some of these for the first time...for that I'm jealous cause the quality of this ride is so high and the success ratio was pretty impressive. I'd say 75% are great-good, while the remaining one's still offer something visually interesting. Looking forward to these reviews.
May 2, 2010, 5:27 p.m. CST
Number 12 Looks Just Like You. It's kind of a companion piece to Eye Of the Beholder. But I like Number 12 more, because when the heroine loses, it's really sad and affecting.
May 2, 2010, 5:28 p.m. CST
The ONLY thing that robs the extra features from perfection are the absence of William Shatner commentary on his two episodes 'Nick of Time' and the classic' Nightmare at 20,000 Feet'. I'm sure they asked...as many surviving stars from the show gave their two cents on the commentary tracks. Shatner probably wanted too much money (shame). Among the great writers on this show I don't think anybody mentioned the work of Charles Beaumont (Perchance to Dream, Howling Man, Number Twelve Looks Just Like You). Poor health caused some of his later shows to be ghost written by friends, but he was on par with Serling and Matheson in defining the tone of the show. Great short fiction writer as well whose books are still easily available.
May 2, 2010, 5:28 p.m. CST
Also can you please take over coaxial? Herc blows.
May 2, 2010, 6:01 p.m. CST
keep it up! TZ is one of those great slices of chicken fried television, that only gets better and better
May 2, 2010, 6:08 p.m. CST
You have the awareness level of a slightly larger bug. Let's say one of those really big Amazonian beetles.<p> I love the Twilight Zone. Episode after episode it flipped reality on its head and made us look at the real world with a whole new set of eyes. Serling bled himself dry for that series.
May 2, 2010, 6:22 p.m. CST
Great Job and one of my all-time favorite shows!!!!! Keep up the great work!!
May 2, 2010, 6:35 p.m. CST
that are coming, complete w/ brand new commentaries
May 2, 2010, 7:09 p.m. CST
May 2, 2010, 7:12 p.m. CST
and this site in particular. Every five minutes you stumble upon someone who has no idea what's going on!
May 2, 2010, 7:33 p.m. CST
May 2, 2010, 7:36 p.m. CST
Guess that's a yes vote on this series. I can't promise they'll be daily, like the AMADs, but I'll put a priority on it to keep it regular, at least 2 articles a week.<BR><BR>As far as the Blus... well, at $70 per season that's $350. I'm fine with the DVD up-res until those prices drop.
May 2, 2010, 7:50 p.m. CST
Every wannabe writer needs to sit down and watch every episode of TZ. These are stories told to perfection. They aren't about modern mopey performances and sloppy photography and overemphasis on effects. They are timeless fables about the heart and souls of mostly normal people in extraordinary circumstances. There's no agnst, no "This Ends Now!" teenage bullshit dialogue. The characters are mostly grown-ups with real jobs and normal lives. No sustained series has EVER been written better. Serling was a real writer, educated in the classics. Todays's writers learned everything they know from third generation rip-offs of other TV shows.
May 2, 2010, 7:53 p.m. CST
by UCB Agent1
I look forward to the rest of these.
May 2, 2010, 7:58 p.m. CST
by Khan Singh
I love it, don't stop! I have always loved Rod Serling's work. Writers today could learn a lot from his work and your reviews. PLEASE do Night Gallery next.
May 2, 2010, 8:07 p.m. CST
I would LOVE this collection though. Maybe in another year.
May 2, 2010, 8:09 p.m. CST
I have seen the one where his life continues as long as the grandfather clock is wound. Ed owns every second he is on screen.
May 2, 2010, 8:29 p.m. CST
Their work had such an overwhelming love for humanity but they also knew how dark we could be to each other. You owe it to youself to check out all of Serling's work and, if you haven't, seek out Chayefsky's The Hospital, starring George C. Scott. I loved it almost as much as Network which, btw, is my favorite movie of the 70's and, IMHO, the most important film of that era.
May 2, 2010, 8:30 p.m. CST
Let us know when you start getting deja vu. I'm never sure if it's because I've seen the episode before or if another episode has the exact same plot twist. Maybe you could keep a running tally of the more common ones, like "Already Dead (includes being in Hell)", "That Guy Was Really God/Satan/an alien", and "It Was Earth All Along"
May 2, 2010, 8:32 p.m. CST
Hard to say which is my favorite episode. There are soo many masterpiece's. If I had to choose, I'd say that Five Characters in Search of an Exit holds special meaning for me.
May 2, 2010, 8:39 p.m. CST
great idea mate
May 2, 2010, 9:10 p.m. CST
And darn I wish I jumped at that gold box price.
May 2, 2010, 9:30 p.m. CST
That is all.
May 2, 2010, 9:32 p.m. CST
Got it from Amazons Gold Box Pick and it was one of the best buys I could have ever made. Money well spent I think. Love everything about this show, glad to see you doing this column Quint
May 2, 2010, 9:39 p.m. CST
I used to watch them when I was a student in Belfast a few years ago, me and a mate used to stay up to about 4am just to watch them. Finally got them all last year and planned to watch them but have only managed around 50 eps so far. I think this series will be a great way to finally watch them all. A few highlight episodes for me: next stop willoughby penny for your thoughts time enough at last maple street eye of the beholder the mirror(can't remember exact title but columbo is essentially Castro)
May 2, 2010, 9:43 p.m. CST
The Twilight Zone series will be required viewing for understanding the history, culture, values, and general mind set of the mid 20th century.
May 2, 2010, 10:23 p.m. CST
I'll definitely buy the TZ Blu-rays if they look anything like the Seventh Seal Blu. Unfortunate that the handful of episodes shot on video will still look horrible (eg, the kid who talks to his dead grandma, the nurse who says "Room for one more, Honey")
May 2, 2010, 10:28 p.m. CST
by frank cotton
now i can find out which ones i missed (seen a boatload of them). always liked the hot/cold episode. also a fan of OUTER LIMITS and ONE STEP BEYOND (awesome name). still hard to believe they ever let TZ on the air
May 2, 2010, 10:56 p.m. CST
keep it up! good idea. And yes, certainly to the Hitchcocks afterwards! Theres quite a few of them too though!
May 2, 2010, 11:03 p.m. CST
is a classic episode, indispensable for Christmas. Art Carney, as an intoxicated Santa, deserved an Emmy. The ending (always) shamefully prompts me to wipe an eye. The remake, with its souped-up FX, was dreadful.
May 2, 2010, 11:19 p.m. CST
There's really no show today or recently like that which showcases future talent, like Redford, Marvin, Bronson, Shatner, Landau, Falk, etc. Will Syfy get rid of the TZ marathons for wrestling marathons?
May 2, 2010, 11:26 p.m. CST
This just became my favorite Internet read. I've been obssessing over TZ and anthology series for a while now. Been jumping between this, the 80's TZ, Outer Limits and even Tales from the Darkside. These fuckin' series are my childhood, and TZ is the best of them all. Also, has anyone seen THE SCARY DOOR? It's Futurama's spoof of the TZ, and it's hilarious. Anyway, keep it up, Quint!
May 2, 2010, 11:36 p.m. CST
by Tim Tringle
Late nights on Saturday or Sunday staying up way too late and catching the Twilight Zone on Channel 11 back in New York. This was the show that originally blew minds with the WTF moments that are now emulated in shows like Lost etc. God I love this show and need to buy it on Amazon the next time it's cheap. Great column Quint keep it up.
May 2, 2010, 11:36 p.m. CST
I loved reading your take on the early episodes. Thanks!
May 2, 2010, 11:39 p.m. CST
by Tim Tringle
first two seasons of the Definitive Editions are only $30 over at Amazon RIGHT NOW!!!
May 2, 2010, 11:42 p.m. CST
by Tim Tringle
The whole point I always felt is that while he thought of himself as a pitchman he was never the best, never the consumate. But when the chips fell not only did he get out of being taken by death, he had to one up himself to do it again to save the little girl. I think Wynn being who he was made it more poignant for the fact that he did not fit anybody's cookie cutout of the flimflam salesman etc.
May 2, 2010, 11:50 p.m. CST
by Tim Tringle
While some of the settings will seem so Twin Peaks in their late 50's styling, the stories themselves are so amazingly clear and well defined. This is brutally streamlined story telling at it's best in television's long history. But the amazing thing is that some of the stories can be plucked out of that time and just redone today. It's a shame that when we do remakes today we feel that we have to change it. Stories like the Monsters on Main (Elm?) street have been redone and I believe in one of the latest incarnations they used terrorists as the scapegoat group instead of aliens or commies. These are the types of stories that people have been gathering around campfires telling each other since the dawn of man and have creeped into our collective unconscious. Brilliant series and so ahead of it's time.
May 2, 2010, 11:54 p.m. CST
by Tim Tringle
One of the funniest spoofs of the twilight zone stuffed into the already amazingly funny and filled to brim Futurama episodes. Any Twilight zone fan owes it to himself to watch these. Of course most of you will just go over to Youtube and search for it, WELL YOUR WRONG!!!! GO BUY IT!!!! LOL, no biggy if you start watching futurama on Youtube you're gonna buy it anyway.
May 3, 2010, 12:31 a.m. CST
It's on YouTube in ten parts and it's fantastic. Here's the link to part one....<br> <br>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hTqPfp36Xwg
May 3, 2010, 12:34 a.m. CST
Absolutely agree with you regard Wynn. He brought such a genuine sincerity to the role that you can see his triumph turn to dread in the shot where he realizes he doomed a poor little girl to take his place. It really is an incredible performance that nearly broke my heart. They don't make 'em like they used to.
May 3, 2010, 12:52 a.m. CST
my biggest suggestion is to keep reminding us of similarities in plot, style, concept, both to contemporary works and later shows and movies. I really think the best part about watching old Twilight Zone episodes is how much you can feel their fingerprints on subsequent films and shows. as with any true innovator, whether conscious or not, later works can't help but borrow. and since you've seem probably as many movies as anyone on the planet not named Scorcese or Tarantino, my only hope is that you drop those connections whenever and wherever you see them. <p>great work, and I think I just might have to go pick these up this week.<p>and I typed all this during a commercial break for Breaking Bad...pretty impressive, huh?
May 3, 2010, 6:37 a.m. CST
by The StarWolf
I'm old enough to [barely] remember some as they were first being shown. I do have the sets, but am intrigued by your 'take' on them, so please do go on with your comments.
May 3, 2010, 7:01 a.m. CST
I'll be interested on your take on some of the later episodes shot on video tape.
May 3, 2010, 7:11 a.m. CST
Would love to see an ongoing article about these. This was an amazing show.
May 3, 2010, 9:37 a.m. CST
I bought it from a flea market back in the early 90's. Unfortunately the tape got chewed circa 95.
May 3, 2010, 9:59 a.m. CST
I loved watching the Twilight Zone re-runs when I was younger. Possibly one of my favorite shows of all time. Creepy with William Shatner's episode, Burgess Meredith in all his episodes. I hope you follow through with this idea as I know there some I missed or just plain forgotten.
May 3, 2010, 10:05 a.m. CST
I remember reading that a very young Steven Spielberg directed this episode. I remember watching Poltergeist and thinking "Wow, this really seems familiar."
May 3, 2010, 10:11 a.m. CST
Spielberg would have been way to young to have directed any of the original TZ's.
May 3, 2010, 10:21 a.m. CST
...you must be thinking of the Night Gallery pilot movie. Spielberg directed the second episode 'Eyes' with Joan Crawford. I think it was his first professional work. But your Little Girl Lost / Poltergeist analogy is spot on. Hey Quint, it could be fun to try to cross reference later films that were in concept inspired by TZ episodes. The list would be long.
May 3, 2010, 10:26 a.m. CST
or the comparison is invalid because they are two different genre tvseries? (the former general fiction,the latter scifi)
May 3, 2010, 10:38 a.m. CST
...will be for sale at this years San Diego Comic Con.
May 3, 2010, 10:48 a.m. CST
just off the top of my head I can name plenty like Poltergiest, Lair Liar, What Women Want, Manequin, Peggy Sue got Married, Child's Play...I could go on and on
May 3, 2010, 12:37 p.m. CST
May 3, 2010, 12:38 p.m. CST
by spud mcspud
...What's better than an episode guide for the greatest SF TV show of all time? An episode guide with some informed, intelligent ponderings to them.<P> You keep writing 'em, I'll keep reading 'em.
May 3, 2010, 12:39 p.m. CST
that penny fortune telling machine w the devil head from the other Shatner show 'Nick of Time' Saw it online somewhere and can't remember now.
May 3, 2010, 12:45 p.m. CST
...that would 'FMSU' everytime I saw it at night! ...and where the hell would you put it anyway?...in a chair?...Hell no! I'm rambling...sorry.
May 3, 2010, 1:26 p.m. CST
as shocking as it is that you have never seen these episodes, the analysis is great. serling is one person i'd love to have had a meal with (aka long, extensive interview).
May 3, 2010, 1:51 p.m. CST
I've been looking for an excuse to revisit this classic series. Thoroughly enjoy your reviews and this is pure genre candy.
May 3, 2010, 1:57 p.m. CST
May 3, 2010, 3:16 p.m. CST
This is the best article I've read on this site in months, please keep it going. And it would be great if you could give a spoiler/ending free summary of the episode to whet our appetite, like you did with the 2nd and 3rd episodes, because it will encourage people to watch one of the best shows in tv history instead of just reading about it. Great article.
May 3, 2010, 3:25 p.m. CST
It would include eighteen or so Twilight Zone episodes, the Twilight Zone movie, the Star Trek episode "Enemy Within," the Martian Chronicles tv miniseries, a couple of Night Gallery episodes, the movies _Incredible Shrinking Man_, _Somewhere In Time_, _What Dreams May Come_, _Legend of Hell House_, and Spielberg's _Duel_, the original Kolchak the Night Stalker, three _I AM Legend_ movies, and ... well ... some other stuff.
May 3, 2010, 6:09 p.m. CST
I wonder what the blu ray set of the TZ would look like. Some of the episodes were filmed on video and they look really really bad. Also, what else is there to add to the special features?
May 3, 2010, 6:10 p.m. CST
Don't forget "Trilogy Of Terror", with the standout segment being "Amelia", with Karen Black vs. the homicidal Zuni Fetish Doll.
May 3, 2010, 8:53 p.m. CST
<p>Nightmare at 20,000 Feet <p>And When the Sky Was Opened <P>Obsolete Man <p>The Monsters are Due on Maple Street <p>The Grave <P>A Stop at Willoughby <p>The Dummy <p>Stopover in a Quiet Town <p>Nick of Time <p>The Jungle <P>It's a Good Life <p>The Howling Man <p>Judgment Night <p>Death Ship <p>The New Exhibit <p>The Odyssey of Flight 33 <p>The Thirty-Fathom Grave
May 3, 2010, 8:53 p.m. CST
May 3, 2010, 9 p.m. CST
It's funny to watch TZ and then watch Planet of the Apes, which he scripted. Most people think of Apes as cheese, and the later ones were. But Serling's script for the first one should really be appreciated for the social commentary that TZ was also famous for. Serling not only created the famous ending (different than the novel) but "take your stinking hands off me, you damn dirty ape!" will live forever as one of films greatest lines!
May 3, 2010, 9:04 p.m. CST
converted into B&W and edited into an episode of TZ on Youtube a while back...
May 3, 2010, 9:12 p.m. CST
Got it several years ago. I think I'm going to join you on this journey, although I may not hit every episode. But I'm at least going to get the Wynn one tonight. Thanks!
May 3, 2010, 9:36 p.m. CST
Some real pathos from the lead actress there. Or whoever dubbed her voice while she was under wraps. And the idea that everyone has to look a certain way or they'll get shipped off to an island of ugly people (England) is more pertinent now than ever.
May 3, 2010, 10:24 p.m. CST
And "Where is Everybody". While I had seen them both before (I believe I've seen all but two or three), I was really struck by what a strong piece of 50s era sci-fi "Everybody" was. I enjoyed watching that more than any movie I've seen recently. Thanks for the inspiration, Quint.
May 3, 2010, 10:35 p.m. CST
Great! Damn, I've got goosebumps. I'm sorry I have to stop and go to bed. What a great frickin' show. Also, these DVDs have Rod Serling's pitch for the next episode and an attatched period ad. Awesome. So glad Quint started this.
May 3, 2010, 10:47 p.m. CST
May 3, 2010, 10:51 p.m. CST
Awesome. Just saying.
May 3, 2010, 11:15 p.m. CST
by frank cotton
May 4, 2010, 2:59 a.m. CST
not just "stinking paws off of me", and the Jerry Goldsmith music, who did a couple of tz episodes as his first music jobs. A lot of great TV writer/producers since Rod, -- Chase, Simon, Abrams, Link & Levinson, Bochco, Kelley, Gilligan, Whedon, Weiner, Milch, Roddenberry, Sorkin. But, the first is still the best.
May 4, 2010, 5:17 a.m. CST
I've just finished season three. About to take on the season four which were the one hour episodes.
May 4, 2010, 5:18 a.m. CST
Take out Apes - which wasn't his original idea and i don't know of any hits.
May 4, 2010, 11:17 a.m. CST
I know it isnt the same as having the actually box sets, but still.....
May 4, 2010, 1:55 p.m. CST
Billy Mumy putting people "in the cornfield," in the episode It's a Good Life, is my personal favorite TZ. In my family, we quote the cornfield line whenever someone crosses the line.
May 4, 2010, 3:39 p.m. CST
Was the first one I ever saw. Though I will admit the Rod Serling written thing that freaked the shit out of me was a Night Gallery episode with Arte Johnson as a radio DJ who realizes he is about to be sacrificed to Satan. The ending still freaks me out to this day
May 11, 2010, 8 a.m. CST
When I learned after many years that Serling wrote (or at least co-wrote?) Planet of the Apes, I realized it is very much like a Twilight Zone episode, complete with the unexpected twist ending.
Jan. 7, 2011, 8:16 p.m. CST
This is my favorite series and I'd love to see interested parties delving into it episode by episode. The new dvd collection is one of the best things I own; I never get tired of going into this world. Late one night as a kid (in the 1980s, when there were only a couple of channels on TV), apparently a rogue bolt of lightning created a brief vortex in space-time, and a mysterious broadcast from another dimension found its way onto my little television set (or so it seemed at the time). It was eerie, black and white, and an otherwordly being in a snug black suit addressed me through a cloud of cigarette smoke. He introduced Death himself, also clad in suit and tie. This was 'One For the Angels', and it made a huge impression on me-- this might be one of my earliest memories. Many years later, after cable TV, I spent several New Years nights sitting in front of the sci-fi channel exhaustively taping episodes, trying to edit out the commercials as I went. I would then create type-written labels for the videos, detailing the episodes in order. I had stacks of these tapes. Of course I was uphappy with the random "volume" dvds when they first came out, and only bought a few. But this new set is amazing-- there are episodes even I haven't seen. If anything this series shows that great art can be sold to the masses, when packaged properly.