Wednesday, April 23, 2014
T is for : The Twilight Zone!!
In my opinion, one of the greatest anthology series, of all time, was The Twilight Zone.
Created, hosted, and narrated by the chain smoking Rod Serling, The Twilight Zone ran on CBS from 1959 to 1964.
With a penchant for "twist endings", Twilight Zone was a show that could not only make you think, but could also make you question what you thought, as well. Serling was a script writer who was way ahead of his time in not only writing, but in social commentary. Many episodes were allegorical and reflective of the turbulent time in which they were made.
The actors who appeared on the show ran the gambit from silent movie icons like Buster Keaton, to great character actors such as Burgess Meredith and Andy Devine, to future film and television icons, such as William Shatner, Elizabeth Montgomery, and Robert Redford. One of my favorite episodes was Time Enough at Last. Burgess Meredith played a reclusive bookworm who wanted nothing more than to be
alone and read his books. Being a bank teller, he would go down to the vault on his lunch hour and read....until one day he hears an explosion as he sits in the vault. He goes back upstairs to find the's the last man on earth due to a large, nuclear, proliferation.....and, strangely enough, that makes him very happy. Now, he'll have time to read his books with no interruptions. As he's cataloging all his new found books he drops his glasses and they break. The show ends with him kneeling in the middle of a pile of books, sobbing, with his broken glasses in hand.
Not only was The Twilight Zone a favorite show of mine, but it was very influential in my writing. There's nothing I love more than a "twist" ending or something that makes the reader think "Wow, didn't see that coming." I always (well, almost always) enjoy a show that makes me think and The Twilight Zone did just that without being too "preachy" or "cerebral".
The next time you see that signpost up ahead that tell you you're coming up to the Twilight Zone.....do yourself a favor and stop on by.....you just may learn something.
Honorable Mentions: Time Tunnel, Three's Company, T.J. Hooker
Tune in tomorrow for a visitor from another planet who I've talked about before.....