Anonymous 64m 9,569
The views of this article are the perspective of the author and may not be reflective of Confessions of the Professions.
There are many lessons to be learned when watching Twilight Zone. While its amazing storytelling at best, it truly is a warning for humanity, to see things from the past or to see the alternative realities. With over 150 episodes and still as relevant today as it was 60 years ago, you should always find a way to watch Twilight Zone. With each end came a conclusion, and while you may not know the storyline, the closing narrations were quite disturbing and informative about humanity.
1) Where is Everybody?
Up there, up there in the vastness of space, in the void that is sky, up there is an enemy known as isolation. It sits there in the stars waiting, waiting with the patience of eons, forever waiting, in the Twilight Zone.
2) One for the Angels
Lewis J. Bookman, age sixtyish. Occupation: pitchman. Formerly a fixture of the summer, formerly a rather minor component to a hot July. But throughout his life, a man beloved by the children, and therefore a most important man. Couldn’t happen, you say? Probably not in most places – but it did happen in the Twilight Zone.
3) Mr. Denton on Doomsday
Mr. Henry Fate, dealer in utensils and pots and pans, liniments and potions. A fanciful little man in a black frock coat who can help a man climbing out of a pit – or another man from falling into one. Because, you see, fate can work that way in the Twilight Zone.
4) The Sixteen Millimeter Shrine
To the wishes that come true, to the strange, mystic strength of the human animal, who can take a wishful dream and give it a dimension of its own. To Barbara Jean Trenton, movie queen of another era, who has changed the blank tomb of an empty projection screen into a private world. It can happen in the Twilight Zone.
5) Walking Distance
Martin Sloan, age thirty-six, vice-president in charge of media. Successful in most things but not in the one effort that all men try at some time in their lives – trying to go home again. And also like all men perhaps there’ll be an occasion, maybe a summer night sometime, when he’ll look up from what he’s doing and listen to the distant music of a calliope, and hear the voices and the laughter of the people and the places of his past. And perhaps across his mind there’ll flit a little errant wish, that a man might not have to become old, never outgrow the parks and the merry-go-rounds of his youth. And he’ll smile then too because he’ll know it is just an errant wish, some wisp of memory not too important really, some laughing ghosts that cross a man’s mind, that are a part of the Twilight Zone.
6) Escape Clause
There’s a saying, ‘Every man is put on Earth condemned to die, time and method of execution unknown.’ Perhaps this is as it should be. Case in point: Walter Bedeker, lately deceased, a little man with such a yen to live. Beaten by the Devil, by his own boredom, and by the scheme of things in this, the Twilight Zone.
7) The Lonely
On a microscopic piece of sand that floats through space is a fragment of a man’s life. Left to rust is the place he lived in and the machines he used. Without use, they will disintegrate from the wind and the sand and the years that act upon them; all of Mr. Corry’s machines – including the one made in his image, kept alive by love, but now obsolete in the Twilight Zone.
8) Time Enough at Last
The best-laid plans of mice and men – and Henry Bemis, the small man in the glasses who wanted nothing but time. Henry Bemis, now just a part of a smashed landscape, just a piece of the rubble, just a fragment of what man has deeded to himself. Mr. Henry Bemis in the Twilight Zone.
9) Perchance to Dream
They say a dream takes only a second or so, and yet in that second a man can live a lifetime. He can suffer and die, and who’s to say which is the greater reality: the one we know or the one in dreams, between heaven, the sky, the earth in the Twilight Zone.
10) Judgment Night
The S.S. Queen of Glasgow, heading for New York, and the time is 1942. For one man, it is always 1942, and this man will ride the ghost of that ship every night for eternity. This is what is meant by paying the fiddler. This is the comeuppance awaiting every man when the ledger of his life is opened and examined, the tally made, and then the reward or the penalty paid. And in the case of Carl Lanser, former Kapitan Leutnant, Navy of the Third Reich, this is the penalty. This is the justice meted out. This is judgment night in the Twilight Zone.
11) And When the Sky was Opened
Once upon a time, there was a man named Harrington, a man named Forbes, a man named Gart. They used to exist, but don’t any longer. Someone or something took them somewhere. At least they are no longer a part of the memory of man. And as to the X-20 supposed to be housed here in this hangar, this too does not exist. And if any of you have any questions concerning an aircraft and three men who flew her, speak softly of them, and only in the Twilight Zone.
12) What You Need
Street scene. Night. Traffic accident. Victim named Fred Renard, gentleman with a sour face to whom contentment came with difficulty. Fred Renard, who took all that was needed, in the Twilight Zone.
13) The Four of Us are Dying
He was Arch Hammer, a cheap little man who just checked in. He was Johnny Foster, who played a trumpet and was loved beyond words. He was Virgil Sterig, with money in his pocket. He was Andy Marshak, who got some of his agony back on a sidewalk in front of a cheap hotel. Hammer, Foster, Sterig, Marshak – and all four of them were dying.
14) Third From the Sun
Behind a tiny ship heading into space is a doomed planet on the verge of suicide. Ahead lies a place called Earth, the third planet from the sun. And for William Sturka and the men and women with him, it’s the eve of the beginning in the Twilight Zone.
15) I Shot an Arrow Into the Air
Practical joke perpetrated by Mother Nature and a combination of improbable events. Practical joke wearing the trappings of nightmare, of terror, of desperation. Small human drama played out in a desert ninety-seven miles from Reno, Nevada, U.S.A., continent of North America, the Earth, and of course, the Twilight Zone.
16) The Hitch-Hiker
Nan Adams, age twenty-seven. She was driving to California, to Los Angeles. She didn’t make it. There was a detour through the Twilight Zone.
17) The Fever
Mr. Franklin Gibbs, visitor to Las Vegas, who lost his money, his reason, and finally his life to an inanimate metal machine variously described as a one-armed bandit, a slot machine or, in Mr. Franklin Gibbs’s words, a monster with a will all its own. For our purposes we’ll stick with the latter definition because we’re in the Twilight Zone.
18) The Last Flight
Dialogue from a play, Hamlet to Horatio: ‘There are more things in heaven and earth than are dreamt of in your philosophy.’ Dialogue from a play written long before men took to the sky. There are more things in heaven and earth, and in the sky, that perhaps can be dreamt of. And somewhere in between heaven, the sky, the earth, lies the Twilight Zone.
19) The Purple Testament
From William Shakespeare, Richard the Third, a small excerpt. The line reads, ‘He has come to open the purple testament of bleeding war.’ And for Lieutenant William Fitzgerald, A Company, First Platoon, the testament is closed. Lieutenant Fitzgerald has found the Twilight Zone.
Kirby, Webber, and Meyers, three men lost. They shared a common wish, a simple one, really – they wanted to be aboard their ship, headed for home. And fate, a laughing fate, a practical jokester with a smile that stretched across the stars, saw to it that they got their wish, with just one reservation: the wish came true, but only in the Twilight Zone.
21) Mirror Image
Obscure metaphysical explanation to cover a phenomenon, reasons dredged out of the shadows to explain away that which cannot be explained. Call it parallel planes or just insanity. Whatever it is, you find it in the Twilight Zone.
22) The Monsters are Due on Maple Street
The tools of conquest do not necessarily come with bombs and explosions and fallout. There are weapons that are simply thoughts, attitudes, prejudices, to be found only in the minds of men. For the record, prejudices can kill and suspicion can destroy, and a thoughtless, frightened search for a scapegoat has a fallout all of its own – for the children, and the children yet unborn. And the pity of it is that these things cannot be confined to the Twilight Zone.
23) A World of Difference
The modus operandi for the departure from life is usually a pine box of such and such dimensions, and this is the ultimate in reality. But there are other ways for a man to exit from life. Take the case of Arthur Curtis, age thirty-six. His departure was along a highway with an exit sign that reads ‘This way to escape.’ Arthur Curtis, en route to the Twilight Zone.
24) Long Live Walter Jameson
Last stop on a long journey, as yet another human being returns to the vast nothingness that is the beginning and into the dust that is always the end.
25) People Are Alike All Over
Species of animal brought back alive. Interesting similarity in physical characteristics to human beings in head, trunk, arms, legs, hands, feet. Very tiny undeveloped brain. Comes from primitive planet named Earth. Calls himself Samuel Conrad. And he will remain here in his cage with the running water and the electricity and the central heat as long as he lives. Samuel Conrad has found the Twilight Zone.
This is November, 1880, the aftermath of a necktie party. The victim’s name – Paul Johnson, a minor-league criminal and the taker of another human life. No comment on his death save this: justice can span years. Retribution is not subject to a calendar. Tonight’s case in point in the Twilight Zone.
27) The Big Tall Wish
Mr. Bolie Jackson, a hundred and eighty-three pounds, who left a second chance lying in a heap on a rosin-spattered canvas at St. Nick’s Arena. Mr. Bolie Jackson, who shares the most common ailment of all men, the strange and perverse disinclination to believe in a miracle, the kind of miracle to come from the mind of a little boy, perhaps only to be found in the Twilight Zone.
28) A Nice Place to Visit
A scared, angry little man who never got a break. Now he has everything he’s ever wanted – and he’s going to have to live with it for eternity in the Twilight Zone.
29) Nightmare as a Child
Miss Helen Foley, who has lived in night and who will wake up to morning. Miss Helen Foley, who took a dark spot from the tapestry of her life and rubbed it clean, then stepped back a few paces and got a good look at the Twilight Zone.
30) A Stop at Willoughby
Willoughby? Maybe it’s wishful thinking nestled in a hidden part of a man’s mind, or maybe it’s the last stop in the vast design of things, or perhaps, for a man like Mr. Gart Williams, who climbed on a world that went by too fast, it’s a place around the bend where he could jump off. Willoughby? Whatever it is, it comes with sunlight and serenity, and is a part of the Twilight Zone.
31) The Chaser
Mr. Roger Shackleforth, who has discovered at this late date that love can be as sticky as a vat of molasses, as unpalatable as a hunk of spoiled yeast, and as all-consuming as a six-alarm fire in a bamboo and canvas tent. Case history of a lover boy who should never have entered the Twilight Zone.
32) A Passage for Trumpet
Joey Crown, who makes music, and who discovered something about life; that it can be rich and rewarding and full of beauty, just like the music he played, if a person would only pause to look and to listen. Joey Crown, who got his clue in the Twilight Zone.
33) Mr. Bevis
Mr. James B.W. Bevis, who believes in a magic all his own. The magic of a child’s smile, the magic of liking and being liked, the strange and wondrous mysticism that is the simple act of living. Mr. James B.W. Bevis, species of twentieth-century male, who has his own private and special Twilight Zone.
34) The After Hours
Marsha White in her normal and natural state. A wooden lady with a painted face who, one month out of the year, takes on the characteristics of someone as normal and as flesh and blood as you and I. But it makes you wonder, doesn’t it? Just how normal are we? Just who are the people we nod our hellos to as we pass on the street? A rather good question to ask, particularly in the Twilight Zone.
35) The Mighty Casey
Once upon a time there was a major-league baseball team called the Hoboken Zephyrs who, during the last year of their existence, wound up in last place and shortly thereafter wound up in oblivion. There’s a rumor, unsubstantiated of course, that a manager named McGarry took them to the West Coast and wound up with several pennants and a couple of world’s championships. This team had a pitching staff that made history. Of course, none of them smiled very much, but it happens to be a fact that they pitched like nothing human. And if you’re interested as to where these gentlemen came from, you might check under ‘B’ for baseball, in the Twilight Zone.
36) A World of His Own
Leaving Mr. Gregory West, still shy, quiet, very happy, and apparently in complete control of the Twilight Zone.
37) King Nine Will Not Return
Enigma buried in the sand, a question mark with broken wings that lies in silent grace as a marker in a desert shrine. Odd how the real consorts with the shadows, how the present fuses with the past. How does it happen? The question is on file in the silent desert. And the answer? The answer is waiting for us in the Twilight Zone.
38) The Man in the Bottle
A word to the wise now to the garbage collectors of the world, to the curio seekers, to the antique buffs, to everyone who would try to coax out a miracle from unlikely places. Check that bottle you’re taking back for a two-cent deposit. The genie you save might be your own. Case in point, Mr. and Mrs. Arthur Castle, fresh from the briefest of trips into the Twilight Zone.
39) Nervous Man in a Four Dollar Room
Exit Mr. John Rhoades, formerly a reflection in a mirror, a fragment of someone else’s conscience, a wishful thinker made out of glass, but now made out of flesh and on his way to join the company of men. Mr. John Rhoades, with one foot through the door and one foot out of the Twilight Zone.
40) A Thing About Machines
Yes, it could just be. It could just be that Mr. Bartlett Finchley succumbed from a heart attack and a set of delusions. It could just be that he was tormented by an imagination as sharp as his wit and as pointed as his dislikes. But as perceived by those attending, this is one explanation that has left the premises with the deceased. Look for it filed under ‘M’ for machines in the Twilight Zone.
41) The Howling Man
Ancient folk saying: ‘You can catch the Devil, but you can’t hold him long.’ Ask Brother Jerome. Ask David Ellington. They know, and they’ll go on knowing to the end of their days and beyond, in the Twilight Zone.
42) The Eye of the Beholder
Now the questions that come to mind: where is this place and when is it, what kind of world where ugliness is the norm and beauty the deviation from that norm? You want an answer? The answer is, it doesn’t make any difference. Because the old saying happens to be true. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, in this year or a hundred years hence, on this planet or wherever there is human life, perhaps out amongst the stars. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Lesson to be learned in the Twilight Zone.
43) Nick of Time
Counterbalance in the little town of Ridgeview, Ohio. Two people permanently enslaved by the tyranny of fear and superstition, facing the future with a kind of helpless dread. Two others facing the future with confidence, having escaped one of the darker places of the Twilight Zone.
44) The Lateness of the Hour
Let this be the postscript: should you be worn out by the rigors of competing in a very competitive world, if you’re distraught from having to share your existence with the noises and neuroses of the twentieth century, if you crave serenity but want it full time and with no strings attached, get yourself a workroom in a basement and then drop a note to Dr. and Mrs. William Loren. They’re a childless couple who made comfort a life’s work, and maybe there are a few do-it-yourself pamphlets still available in the Twilight Zone.
45) The Trouble With Templeton
Mr. Booth Templeton, who shared with most human beings the hunger to recapture the past moments, the ones that soften with the years. But in his case, the characters of his past blocked him out and sent him back to his own time, which is where we find him now. Mr. Booth Templeton, who had a round-trip ticket into the Twilight Zone.
46) A Most Unusual Camera
Object known as a camera, vintage uncertain, origin unknown. But for the greedy, the avaricious, the fleet of foot who can run a four-minute mile so long as they’re chasing a fast buck, it makes believe that it’s an ally, but it isn’t at all. It’s a beckoning come-on for a quick walk around the block in the Twilight Zone.
47) Night of the Meek
A word to the wise to all the children of the twentieth century, whether their concern be pediatrics or geriatrics, whether they crawl on hands and knees and wear diapers or walk with a cane and comb their beards. There’s a wondrous magic to Christmas, and there’s a special power reserved for little people. In short, there’s nothing mightier than the meek.
It was a very small, misery-laden village on the day of a hanging, and of little historical consequence. And if there’s any moral to it at all, let’s say that in any quest for magic, in any search for sorcery, witchery, legerdemain, first check the human heart. For inside this deep place there’s a wizardry that costs far more than a few pieces of gold. Tonight’s case in point in the Twilight Zone.
49) Back There
Mr. Peter Corrigan, lately returned from a place ‘back there,’ a journey into time with highly questionable results, proving on one hand that the threads of history are woven tightly and the skein of events cannot be undone, but on the other hand, there are small fragments of tapestry that can be altered. Tonight’s thesis to be taken as you will, in the Twilight Zone.
50) The Whole Truth
Couldn’t happen, you say? Far-fetched? Way-out? Tilt-of-center? Possible, but the next time you buy an automobile, if it happens to look as if it had just gone through the Battle of the Marne, and the seller is ready to throw into the bargain one of his arms, be particularly careful in explaining to the boss about your grandmother’s funeral when you were actually at Chavez Ravine watching the Dodgers. It’ll be a fact that you are the proud possessor of an instrument of truth manufactured and distributed by an exclusive dealer in the Twilight Zone.
51) The Invaders
These are the invaders, the tiny beings from the tiny place called Earth, who would take the giant step across the sky to the question marks that sparkle and beckon from the vastness of the universe only to be imagined. The invaders, who found out that a one-way ticket to the stars beyond has the ultimate price tag. And we have just seen it entered in a ledger that covers all the transactions of the universe, a bill stamped ‘paid in full,’ and to be found, on file, in the Twilight Zone.
52) A Penny for Your Thoughts
One time in a million, a coin will land on its edge, but all it takes to knock it over is a vagrant breeze, a vibration or a slight blow. Hector B. Poole, a human coin, on edge for a brief time in the Twilight Zone.
Miss Elizabeth Powell, professional dancer. Hospital diagnosis: acute anxiety brought on by overwork and fatigue. Prognosis: with rest and care, she’ll probably recover. But the cure to some nightmares is not to be found in known medical journals. You look for it under ‘potions for bad dreams,’ to be found in the Twilight Zone.
54) The Odyssey of Flight 33
A Global jet airliner, en route from London to New York on an uneventful afternoon in the year 1961, but now reported overdue and missing, and by now searched for on land, sea, and air by anguished human beings fearful of what they’ll find. But you and I know where she is, you and I know what’s happened. So if some moment, any moment, you hear the sound of jet engines flying atop the overcast, engines that sound searching and lost, engines that sound desperate, shoot up a flare or do something. That would be Global 33 trying to get home from the Twilight Zone.
55) Mr. Dingle, the Strong
Exit Mr. Luther Dingle, formerly vacuum-cleaner salesman, strongest man on Earth, and now mental giant. These latter powers will very likely be eliminated before too long, but Mr. Dingle has an appeal to extraterrestrial note-takers as well as to frustrated and insolvent bet-losers. Offhand, I’d say that he was in for a great deal of extremely odd periods, simply because there are so many inhabited planets who send down observers, and also because, of course, Mr. Dingle lives his life with one foot in his mouth, and the other in the Twilight Zone.
Around and around she goes, and where she stops nobody knows. All Ed Lindsay knows is that he desperately wanted a second chance and finally got it, through a strange and wonderful time machine called a radio in the Twilight Zone.
57) The Prime Mover
Some people possess talent, others are possessed by it. When that happens, the talent becomes a curse. Jimbo Cobb knew, right from the beginning. But before Ace Larsen learned that simple truth, he had to take a short trip through the Twilight Zone.
58) Long Distance Call
A toy telephone, an act of faith, a set of improbable circumstances, all combine to probe a mystery, to fathom a depth, to send a facet of light into a dark after-region, to be believed or disbelieved depending on your frame of reference. A fact or a fantasy, a substance or a shadow, but all of it very much a part of the Twilight Zone.
59) A Hundred Yards Over the Rim
Mr. Christian Horn, one of the hardy breed of men who headed west during a time when there were no concrete highways or the solace of civilization. Mr. Christian Horn, family and party, heading west, after a brief detour through the Twilight Zone.
60) The Rip Van Winkle Caper
The last of four Rip Van Winkles who all died precisely the way they lived, chasing an idol across the sand to wind up bleached dry in the hot sun as so much desert flotsam, worthless as the gold bullion they built a shrine to. Tonight’s lesson in the Twilight Zone.
61) The Silence
Mr. Jamie Tennyson, who almost won a bet, but who discovered somewhat belatedly that gambling can be a most unproductive pursuit, even with loaded dice, marked cards, or as in his case some severed vocal cords. For somewhere beyond him a wheel was turned and his number came up black thirteen. If you don’t believe it, ask the croupier, the very special one who handles roulette in the Twilight Zone.
62) Shadow Play
We know that a dream can be real, but who ever thought that reality could be a dream? We exist, of course, but how, in what way? As we believe, as flesh-and-blood human beings, or are we simply parts of someone’s feverish, complicated nightmare? Think about it and then ask yourself, do you live here, in this country, in this world, or do you live instead in the Twilight Zone?
63) The Mind and the Matter
Mr. Archibald Beechcroft, a child of the twentieth century, who has found out through trial and error – and mostly error – that with all its faults it may well be that this is the best of all possible worlds. People notwithstanding, it has much to offer. Tonight’s case in point in the Twilight Zone.
64) Will the Real Martian Please Stand Up
Incident on a small island, to be believed or disbelieved. However, if a sourfaced dandy named Ross or a big, good-natured counterman who handles a spatula as if he’d been born with one in his mouth, if either of these two entities walk onto your premises, you’d better hold their hands – all three of them – or check the color of their eyes – all three of them. The gentlemen in question might try to pull you into the Twilight Zone.
65) The Obsolete Man
The Chancellor – the late Chancellor – was only partly correct. He was obsolete. But so was the State, the entity he worshipped. Any state, any entity, any ideology that fails to recognize the worth, the dignity, the rights of man, that state is obsolete. A case to be filed under ‘M’ for mankind in the Twilight Zone.
This has been a love story about two lonely people who found each other in the Twilight Zone.
67) The Arrival
Picture of a man with an Achilles’ heel, a mystery that landed in his life and then turned into a heavy weight, dragged across the years to ultimately take the form of an illusion. Now, that’s the clinical answer that they put on the tag as they take him away. But if you choose to think that the explanation has to do with an airborne Flying Dutchman, a ghost ship on a fog-enshrouded night on a flight that never ends, then you’re doing your business in an old stand in the Twilight Zone.
68) The Shelter
No moral, no message, no prophetic tract, just a simple statement of fact: for civilization to survive, the human race has to remain civilized. Tonight’s very small exercise in logic from the Twilight Zone.
69) The Passersby
Incident on a dirt road during the month of April, the year 1865. As we’ve already pointed out, it’s a road that won’t be found on a map, but it’s one of many that lead in and out of the Twilight Zone.
70) A Game of Pool
Mr. Jesse Cardiff, who became a legend by beating one, but who has found out after his funeral that being the best of anything carries with it a special obligation to keep on proving it. Mr. Fats Brown, on the other hand, having relinquished the champion’s mantle, has gone fishing. These are the ground rules in the Twilight Zone.
71) The Mirror
Ramos Clemente, a would-be god in dungarees, strangled by an illusion, that will-o’-the-wisp mirage that dangles from the sky in front of the eyes of all ambitious men, all tyrants – and any resemblance to tyrants living or dead is hardly coincidental, whether it be here or in the Twilight Zone.
72) The Grave
Final comment: you take this with a grain of salt or a shovelful of earth, as shadows or substance, we leave it up to you. And for any further research check under ‘G’ for ghosts in the Twilight Zone.
73) It’s a Good Life
No comment here, no comment at all. We only wanted to introduce you to one of our very special citizens, little Anthony Fremont, age 6, who lives in a village called Peaksville in a place that used to be Ohio. And if by some strange chance you should run across him, you had best think only good thoughts. Anything less than that is handled at your own risk, because if you do meet Anthony you can be sure of one thing: you have entered the Twilight Zone.
74) Deaths-Head Revisited
There is an answer to the doctor’s question. All the Dachaus must remain standing. The Dachaus, the Belsens, the Buchenwalds, the Auschwitzes – all of them. They must remain standing because they are a monument to a moment in time when some men decided to turn the Earth into a graveyard. Into it they shoveled all of their reason, their logic, their knowledge, but worst of all, their conscience. And the moment we forget this, the moment we cease to be haunted by its remembrance, then we become the gravediggers. Something to dwell on and to remember, not only in the Twilight Zone but wherever men walk God’s Earth.
75) The Midnight Sun
The poles of fear, the extremes of how the Earth might conceivably be doomed. Minor exercise in the care and feeding of a nightmare, respectfully submitted by all the thermometer-watchers in the Twilight Zone.
76) Still Valley
On the following morning, Sergeant Paradine and the rest of these men were moved up north to a little town in Pennsylvania, an obscure little place where a battle was brewing, a town called Gettysburg, and this one was fought without the help of the Devil. Small historical note not to be found in any known books, but part of the records in the Twilight Zone.
77) The Jungle
Some superstitions, kept alive by the long night of ignorance, have their own special power. You’ll hear of it through a jungle grapevine in a remote corner of the Twilight Zone.
78) Once Upon a Time
‘To each his own’ – so goes another old phrase to which Mr. Woodrow Mulligan would heartily subscribe, for he has learned, definitely the hard way, that there is much wisdom in a third old phrase which goes as follows: ‘Stay in your own backyard.’ To which it might be added, ‘and if possible, assist others to stay in theirs’ – via, of course, the Twilight Zone.
79) Five Characters in Search of an Exit
Just a barrel, a dark depository where are kept the counterfeit, make-believe pieces of plaster and cloth, wrought in the distorted image of human life. But this added, hopeful note: perhaps they are unloved only for the moment. In the arms of children there can be nothing but love. A clown, a tramp, a bagpipe player, a ballet dancer and a major. Tonight’s cast of players on the odd stage known as the Twilight Zone.
80) A Quality of Mercy
‘The quality of mercy is not strained, it droppeth as the gentle rain from heaven upon the place beneath. It blesseth him that gives and him that takes.’ Shakespeare, The Merchant of Venice, but applicable to any moment in time, to any group of soldiery, to any nation on the face of the Earth – or, as in this case, to the Twilight Zone.
81) Nothing in the Dark
There was an old woman who lived in a room and, like all of us, was frightened of the dark, but who discovered in the minute last fragment of her life that there was nothing in the dark that wasn’t there when the lights were on. Object lesson for the more frightened amongst us, in or out of the Twilight Zone.
82) One More Pallbearer
Mr. Paul Radin, a dealer in fantasy, who sits in the rubble of his own making and imagines that he’s the last man on Earth, doomed to a perdition of unutterable loneliness because a practical joke has turned into a nightmare. Mr. Paul Radin, pallbearer at a funeral that he manufactured himself in the Twilight Zone.
83) Dead Man’s Shoes
There’s an old saying that goes, ‘If the show fits, wear it.’ But be careful. If you happen to find a pair of size nine black and gray loafers, made to order in the old country, be very careful. You might walk right into the Twilight Zone.
84) The Hunt
Travellers to unknown regions would be well-advised to take along the family dog. He could just save you from entering the wrong gate. At least, it happened that way once, in a mountainous area of the Twilight Zone.
85) Showdown With Rance McGrew
The evolution of the so-called ‘adult’ western, and the metamorphosis of one Rance McGrew, formerly phony-baloney, now upright citizen with a preoccupation with all things involving tradition, truth and cowpoke predecessors. It’s the way the cookie crumbles and the six-gun shoots in the Twilight Zone.
86) Kick the Can
Sunnyvale Rest, a dying place for ancient people who have forgotten the fragile magic of youth. A dying place for those who have forgotten that childhood, maturity and old age are curiously intertwined and not separate. A dying place for those who have grown too stiff in their thinking to visit the Twilight Zone.
87) A Piano in the House
Mr. Fitzgerald Fortune, a man who went searching for concealed persons and found himself in the Twilight Zone.
88) The Last Rites of Jeff Myrtlebank
Jeff and Comfort are still alive today, and their only son is a United States Senator. He’s noted as an uncommonly shrewd politician, and some believe he must have gotten his education in the Twilight Zone.
89) To Serve Man
The recollections of one Michael Chambers, with appropriate flashbacks and soliloquy. Or more simply stated, the evolution of man, the cycle of going from dust to dessert, the metamorphosis from being the ruler of a planet to an ingredient in someone’s soup. It’s tonight’s bill of fare on the Twilight Zone.
90) The Fugitive
Mrs. Gann will be in for a big surprise when she finds this under Jenny’s pillow, because Mrs. Gann has more temper than imagination. She’ll never dream that this is a picture of Old Ben as he really looks, and it will never occur to her that eventually her niece will grow up to be an honest-to-goodness queen somewhere in the Twilight Zone.
91) Little Girl Lost
The other half where? The fourth dimension? The fifth? Perhaps. They never found the answer. Despite a battery of research physicists equipped with every device known to man, electronic and otherwise, no result was ever achieved, except perhaps a little more respect for and uncertainty about the mechanisms of the Twilight Zone.
92) Person or Persons Unknown
A case of mistaken identity or a nightmare turned inside out? A simple loss of memory or the end of the world? David Gurney may never find the answer, but you can be sure he’s looking for it in the Twilight Zone.
93) The Little People
The case of navigator Peter Craig, a victim of a delusion. In this case, the dream dies a little harder than the man. A small exercise in space psychology that you can try on for size in the Twilight Zone.
94) Four O’Clock
At four o’clock, an evil man made his bed and lay in it, a pot called a kettle black, a stone-thrower broke the windows of his glass house. You look for this one under ‘F’ for fanatic and ‘J’ for justice in the Twilight Zone.
95) Hocus-Pocus and Frisby
Mr. Somerset Frisby, who might have profited by reading an Aesop fable about a boy who cried wolf. Tonight’s tall tale from the timberlands of the Twilight Zone.
96) The Trade-Ins
From Kahil Gibran’s The Prophet: ‘Love gives not but itself and takes not from itself, love possesses not nor would it be possessed, for love is sufficient unto love.’ Not a lesson, just a reminder, all the sentimentalists in the Twilight Zone.
97) The Gift
Madeiro, Mexico, the present. The subject: fear. The cure: a little more faith. An Rx off a shelf in the Twilight Zone.
98) The Dummy
What’s known in the parlance of the times as the old switcheroo, from boss to blockhead in a few uneasy lessons. And if you’re given to nightclubbing on occasion, check this act. It’s called Willy and Jerry, and they generally are booked into some of the clubs along the ‘Gray Night Way’ known as the Twilight Zone.
99) Young Man’s Fancy
Exit Miss Virginia Lane, formerly and most briefly Mrs. Alex Walker. She has just given up a battle and in a strange way retreated, but this has been a retreat back to reality. Her opponent, Alex Walker, will now and forever hold a line that exists in the past. He has put a claim on a moment in time and is not about to relinquish it. Such things do happen in the Twilight Zone.
100) I Sing the Body Electric
A fable? Most assuredly. But who’s to say at some distant moment there might be an assembly line producing a gentle product in the form of a grandmother whose stock in trade is love. Fable, sure, but who’s to say?
101) Cavender Is Coming
A word to the wise now to any and all who might suddenly feel the presence of a cigar-smoking helpmate who takes bankbooks out of thin air. If you’re suddenly aware of any such celestial aids, it means that you’re under the beneficent care of one Harmon Cavender, guardian angel. And this message from the Twilight Zone: lotsa luck!
102) The Changing of the Guard
Professor Ellis Fowler, teacher, who discovered rather belatedly something of his own value. A very small scholastic lesson, from the campus of the Twilight Zone.
103) In His Image
In a way, it can be said that Walter Ryder succeeded in his life’s ambition, even though the man he created was, after all, himself. There may be easier ways to self-improvement, but sometimes it happens that the shortest distance between two points is a crooked line through the Twilight Zone.
104) The Thirty-Fathom Grave
Small naval engagement, the month of April, 1963. Not to be found in any historical annals. Look for this one filed under ‘H’ for haunting in the Twilight Zone.
105) Valley of the Shadow
You’ve seen them. Little towns, tucked away far from the main roads. You’ve seen them, but have you thought about them? Have you wondered what the people do in such places, why they stay? Philip Redfield thinks about them now and he wonders, but only very late at night, when he’s between wakefulness and sleep in the Twilight Zone.
106) He’s Alive
Where will he go next, this phantom from another time, this resurrected ghost of a previous nightmare – Chicago; Los Angeles; Miami, Florida; Vincennes, Indiana; Syracuse, New York? Anyplace, everyplace, where there’s hate, where there’s prejudice, where there’s bigotry. He’s alive. He’s alive so long as these evils exist. Remember that when he comes to your town. Remember it when you hear his voice speaking out through others. Remember it when you hear a name called, a minority attacked, any blind, unreasoning assault on a people or any human being. He’s alive because through these things we keep him alive.
It has been noted in a book of proven wisdom that perfect love casteth out fear. While it’s unlikely that this observation was meant to include that specific fear which follows the loss of extrasensory perception, the principle remains, as always, beautifully intact. Case in point, that of Ilse Nielsen, former resident of the Twilight Zone.
108) Death Ship
Picture of a man who will not see anything he does not choose to see, including his own death. A man of such indomitable will that even the two men beneath his command are not allowed to see the truth; which truth is, that they are no longer among the living, that the movements they make and the words they speak have all been made and spoken countless times before, and will be made and spoken countless times again, perhaps even unto eternity. Picture of a latter-day Flying Dutchman, sailing into the Twilight Zone.
[no closing narration]
They never found Charley Parkes, because the guard didn’t tell them what he saw in the glass case. He knew what they’d say, and he knew they’d be right, too, because seeing is not always believing, especially if what you see happens to be an odd corner of the Twilight Zone.
111) Printer’s Devil
Exit the infernal machine, and with it his satanic majesty, Lucifer, prince of darkness, otherwise known as Mr. Smith. He’s gone, but not for good. That wouldn’t be like him. He’s gone for bad. And he might be back, with another ticket to the Twilight Zone.
112) No Time Like the Past
Incident on a July afternoon, 1881. A man named Driscoll who came and went and, in the process, learned a simple lesson, perhaps best said by a poet named Lathbury, who wrote, ‘Children of yesterday, heirs of tomorrow, what are you weaving? Labor and sorrow? Look to your looms again, faster and faster fly the great shuttles prepared by the master. Life’s in the loom, room for it. Room.’ Tonight’s tale of clocks and calendars in the Twilight Zone.
113) The Parallel
Major Robert Gaines, a latter-day voyager just returned from an adventure. Submitted to you without any recommendations as to belief or disbelief. You can accept or reject; you pays your money and you takes your choice. But credulous or incredulous, don’t bother to ask anyone for proof that it could happen. The obligation is a reverse challenge: prove that it couldn’t. This happens to be the Twilight Zone.
114) I Dream of Genie
Mr. George P. Hanley. Former vocation: jerk. Present vocation: genie. George P. Hanley, a most ordinary man whom life treated without deference, honor or success, but a man wise enough to decide on a most extraordinary wish that makes him the contented, permanent master of his own altruistic Twilight Zone.
115) The New Exhibit
The new exhibit became very popular at Marchand’s, but of all the figures none was ever regarded with more dread than that of Martin Lombard Senescu. It was something about the eyes, people said. It’s the look that one often gets after taking a quick walk through the Twilight Zone.
116) Of Late I Think of Cliffordville
Mr. William J. Feathersmith, tycoon, who tried the track one more time and found it muddier than he remembered, proving with at least a degree of conclusiveness that nice guys don’t always finish last, and some people should quit when they’re ahead. Tonight’s tale of iron men and irony, delivered f.o.b. from the Twilight Zone.
117) The Incredible World of Horace Ford
Exit Mr. and Mrs. Horace Ford, who have lived through a bizarre moment not to be calibrated on normal clocks or watches. Time has passed, to be sure, but it’s the special time in the special place known as the Twilight Zone.
118) On Thursday We Leave for Home
William Benteen, who had prerogatives: he could lead, he could direct, dictate, judge, legislate. It became a habit, then a pattern and finally a necessity. William Benteen, once a god, now a population of one.
119) Passage on the Lady Anne
The Lady Anne never reached port. After they were picked up by a cutter a few hours later, as Captain Protheroe had promised, the Ransomes searched the newspapers for news – but there wasn’t any news. The Lady Anne with all her crew and all her passengers vanished without a trace. But the Ransomes knew what had happened, they knew that the ship had sailed off to a better port – a place called the Twilight Zone.
120) The Bard
Mr. Julius Moomer, a streetcar conductor with delusions of authorship. And if the tale just told seems a little tall, remember a thing called poetic license, and another thing called the Twilight Zone.
121) In Praise of Pip
Very little comment here, save for this small aside: that the ties of flesh are deep and strong, that the capacity to love is a vital, rich and all-consuming function of the human animal, and that you can find nobility and sacrifice and love wherever you may seek it out; down the block, in the heart, or in the Twilight Zone.
Portrait of a losing side, proof positive that you can’t outpunch machinery. Proof also of something else: that no matter what the future brings, man’s capacity to rise to the occasion will remain unaltered. His potential for tenacity and optimism continues, as always, to outfight, outpoint and outlive any and all changes made by his society, for which three cheers and a unanimous decision rendered from the Twilight Zone.
123) Nightmare at 20,000 Feet
The flight of Mr. Robert Wilson has ended now, a flight not only from point A to point B, but also from the fear of recurring mental breakdown. Mr. Wilson has that fear no longer, though, for the moment, he is, as he has said, alone in this assurance. Happily, his conviction will not remain isolated too much longer, for happily, tangible manifestation is very often left as evidence of trespass, even from so intangible a quarter as the Twilight Zone.
124) A Kind of a Stopwatch
Mr. Patrick Thomas McNulty, who had a gift of time. He used it, and he misused it, and now he’s just been handed the bill. Tonight’s tale of motion and McNulty in the Twilight Zone.
125) The Last Night of a Jockey
The name is Grady, ten feet tall, a slightly distorted offshoot of a good breed of humans who race horses. Unfortunately for Mr. Grady, he learned too late that you don’t measure size with a ruler, you don’t figure height with a yardstick and you never judge a man by how tall he looks in a mirror. The giant is as he does. You can make a parimutuel bet on this, win, place or show, in or out of the Twilight Zone.
126) Living Doll
Of course, we all know dolls can’t really talk, and they certainly can’t commit murder. But to a child caught in the middle of turmoil and conflict, a doll can become many things: friend, defender, guardian. Especially a doll like Talky Tina, who did talk and did commit murder, in the misty region of the Twilight Zone.
127) The Old Man in the Cave
Mr. Goldsmith, survivor, an eye witness to man’s imperfection, an observer of the very human trait of greed and a chronicler of the last chapter, the one reading ‘suicide.’ Not a prediction of what is to be, just a projection of what could be. This has been the Twilight Zone.
128) Uncle Simon
Dramatis personae: a metal man, who will go by the name of Simon, whose life as well as his body has been stamped out for him, and the woman who tends to him, the lady, Barbara, who’s discovered belatedly that all bad things don’t come to an end, and that once a bed is made it’s quite necessary that you sleep in it. Tonight’s uncomfortable little exercise in avarice and automatons from the Twilight Zone.
129) Probe 7 – Over and Out
Do you know these people? Names familiar, are they? They lived a long time ago. Perhaps they’re part fable, perhaps they’re part fantasy. And perhaps the place they’re walking to now is not really called Eden. We offer it only as a presumption. This has been the Twilight Zone.
130) The 7th Is Made Up of Phantoms
Sergeant William Conners, Trooper Michael McCluskey and Trooper Richard Langsford, who on a hot afternoon in June made a charge over a hill and never returned. Look for this one under ‘P’ for phantom, in a historical ledger located in a reading room known as the Twilight Zone.
131) A Short Drink From a Certain Fountain
It happens to be a fact: as one gets older, one does get wiser. If you don’t believe it, ask Flora. Ask her any day of the ensuing weeks of her life, as she takes notes during the coming years and realizes that the worm has turned. Youth has taken over. It’s simply the way the calendar crumbles in the Twilight Zone.
132) Ninety Years Without Slumbering
Clocks are made by men. God creates time. No man can prolong his allotted hours. He can only live them to the fullest – in this world or in the Twilight Zone.
133) Ring-a-Ding Girl
We are all travellers. The trip starts in a place called birth, and ends in that lonely town called death. And that’s the end of the journey, unless you happen to exist for a few hours, like Bunny Blake, in the misty regions of the Twilight Zone.
134) You Drive
All persons attempting to conceal criminal acts involving their cars are hereby warned: check first to see that underneath that chrome there does not lie a conscience, especially if you’re driving along a rain-soaked highway in the Twilight Zone.
135) The Long Morrow
Commander Douglas Stansfield, one of the forgotten pioneers of the space age. He’s been pushed aside by the flow of progress and the passage of years, and the ferocious travesty of fate. Tonight’s tale of the ionosphere and irony, delivered from the Twilight Zone.
136) The Self-Improvement of Salvadore Ross
The Salvadore Ross program for self-improvement. The all-in-one, sure-fire success course that lets you lick the bully, learn the language, dance the tango and anything else you want to do – or think you want to do. Money-back guarantee. Offer limited to the Twilight Zone.
137) Number Twelve Looks Just Like You
Portrait of a young lady in love – with herself. Improbable? Perhaps. But in an age of plastic surgery, body building and an infinity of cosmetics, let us hesitate to say impossible. These and other strange blessings may be waiting in the future, which after all, is the Twilight Zone.
138) Black Leather Jackets
Portrait of an American family on the eve of invasion from outer space. Of course, we know it’s merely fiction – and yet, think twice when you drink your next glass of water. Find out if it’s from your local reservoir, or possibly it came direct to you from the Twilight Zone.
139) Night Call
According to the Bible, God created the heavens and the Earth. It is man’s prerogative – and woman’s – to create their own particular and private hell. Case in point, Miss Elva Keene, who in every sense has made her own bed and now must lie in it, sadder, but wiser, by dint of a rather painful lesson in responsibility, transmitted from the Twilight Zone.
140) From Agnes – With Love
Advice to all future male scientists: be sure you understand the opposite sex, especially if you intend being a computer expert. Otherwise, you may find yourself, like poor Elwood, defeated by a jealous machine, a most dangerous sort of female, whose victims are forever banished to the Twilight Zone.
141) Spur of the Moment
This is the face of terror: Anne Marie Mitchell, forty-three years of age, her desolate existence once more afflicted by the hope of altering her past mistake – a hope which is, unfortunately, doomed to disappointment. For warnings from the future to the past must be taken in the past; today may change tomorrow, but once today is gone tomorrow can only look back in sorrow that the warning was ignored. Said warning as of now stamped ‘not accepted’ and stored away in the dead file in the recording office of the Twilight Zone.
142) An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge
An occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge in two forms, as it was dreamed, and as it was lived and died. This is the stuff of fantasy, the thread of imagination, the ingredients of the Twilight Zone.
143) Queen of the Nile
Everybody knows Pamela Morris, the beautiful and eternally young movie star. Or does she have another name, even more famous, an Egyptian name from centuries past? It’s best not to be too curious, lest you wind up like Jordan Herrick, a pile of dust and old clothing, discarded in the endless eternity of the Twilight Zone.
144) What’s in the Box
The next time your TV set is on the blink, when you’re in the need of a first-rate repairman, may we suggest our own specialist? Factory-trained, prompt, honest, twenty-four-hour service. You won’t find him in the phone book, but his office is conveniently located in the Twilight Zone.
145) The Masks
Mardi Gras incident, the dramatis personae being four people who came to celebrate and in a sense let themselves go. This they did with a vengeance. They now wear the faces of all that was inside them, and they’ll wear them for the rest of their lives, said lives now to be spent in shadow. Tonight’s tale of men, the macabre and masks, on the Twilight Zone.
146) I Am the Night – Color Me Black
A sickness known as hate. Not a virus, not a microbe, not a germ, but a sickness nonetheless, highly contagious, deadly in its effects. Don’t look for it in the Twilight Zone – look for it in a mirror. Look for it before the light goes out altogether.
147) Sounds and Silences
When last heard from, Mr. Roswell G. Flemington was in a sanitarium pleading with the medical staff to make some noise. They, of course, believe the case to be a rather tragic aberration – a man’s mind becoming unhinged. And for this they’ll give him pills, therapy and rest. Little do they realize that all Mr. Flemington is suffering from is a case of poetic justice. Tonight’s tale of sounds and silences from the Twilight Zone.
148) Caesar and Me
Little girl and a wooden doll, a lethal dummy in the shape of a man. But everybody knows dummies can’t talk – unless, of course, they learn their vocabulary in the Twilight Zone.
149) The Jeopardy Room
Major Ivan Kuchenko, on his way west, on his way to freedom, a freedom bought and paid for by a most stunning ingenuity. And exit one Commissar Vassiloff, who forgot that there are two sides to an argument, and two parties on the line. This has been the Twilight Zone.
150) Stopover in a Quiet Town
The moral of what you’ve just seen is clear. If you drink, don’t drive. And if your wife has had a couple, she shouldn’t drive either. You might both just wake up with a whale of a headache in a deserted village in the Twilight Zone.
151) The Encounter
Two men in an attic, locked in mortal embrace. Their common bond and their common enemy: guilt. A disease all too prevalent amongst men, both in and out of the Twilight Zone.
152) Mr. Garrity and the Graves
Exit Mr. Garrity, a would-be charlatan, a make-believe con man and a sad misjudger of his own talents. Respectfully submitted from an empty cemetery on a dark hillside that is one of the slopes leading to the Twilight Zone.
153) The Brain Center at Whipple’s
There are many bromides applicable here – too much of a good thing, tiger by the tail, as you sow so shall ye reap. The point is that too often man becomes clever instead of becoming wise, he becomes inventive but not thoughtful, and sometimes, as in the case of Mr. Whipple, he can create himself right out of existence. Tonight’s tale of oddness and obsolescence from the Twilight Zone.
154) Come Wander With Me
In retrospect, it may be said of Mr. Floyd Burney that he achieved that final dream of the performer: eternal top-name billing, not on the fleeting billboards of the entertainment world, but forever recorded among the folk songs of the Twilight Zone.
155) The Fear
Fear, of course, is extremely relative. It depends on who can look down and who must look up. It depends on other vagaries, like the time, the mood, the darkness. But it’s been said before, with great validity, that the worst thing there is to fear is fear itself. Tonight’s tale of terror and tiny people on the Twilight Zone.
156) The Bewitchin’ Pool
A brief epilogue for concerned parents. Of course, there isn’t any such place as the gingerbread house of Aunt T, and we grownups know there’s no door at the bottom of a swimming pool that leads to a secret place. But who can say how real the fantasy world of lonely children can become? For Jeb and Sport Sharewood, the need for love turned fantasy into reality. They found a secret place in the Twilight Zone.