The Twilight Zone Discussion Thread

Discussion in 'Archive: SF&F: Films and Television' started by -RebelScum-, Jan 4, 2006.

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  1. -RebelScum- Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Feb 21, 2004
    star 6
    I've seen a few episodes of this show and loved it, I particullary love the host, does anyone else enjoy The Twilight Zone?

    -The Scummy-
  2. REVANLORD Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Jun 2, 2005
    star 4
    I freaking love that show!!! "________ IS, the Twilight Zone." Brilliant! :D


    The Hooded Soul
  3. Warrior_of_Mandalore Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Aug 1, 2003
    star 4
    [image=http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/thumb/2/29/Timeenoughtolast.JPG/180px-Timeenoughtolast.JPG]
    It's not fair! There was time enough at last!

    Best TV show ever made.

    Warrior_of_Mandalore Strikes Again!
  4. ginchy Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    May 25, 2005
    star 4
    Twilight Zone fanatic here. I love so many episodes, but my favorite is 'I Shot an Arrow in the Air'.

    I love how they do the marathons on The Sci-Fi Channel. Always makes me giddy. :D
  5. Liesl Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    May 31, 2005
    star 4
    Ooh, the original Twilight Zone is one of my absolute favorite TV series ever!

    I like New Year's and the Fourth of July just fine, but the fact that Sci-Fi has 48 hour marathons of the Twilight Zone!
  6. JediVegeta Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 20, 2000
    star 4
    ^^^^^^

    Yesss! My father and I always stay up late to watch it! My favorite episode had to be the women who we thought was being invaded by aliens, but it was actually NASA landing on her planet. Name escapes me...ah! I love watching it!! :D
  7. -RebelScum- Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Feb 21, 2004
    star 6
    Never saw that, but that would be good.

    -The Scummy-
  8. Funk-E Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 11, 2003
    star 6
    Twilight Zone or Outer Limits? You decide, San Diego.
  9. Liesl Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    May 31, 2005
    star 4
    That episode freaks my sister out to no end. But I like the shock factor of it.
  10. denryanj Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Oct 22, 2003
    That episode is entitled "The Invasion", written by the incomparable Richard Matheson.

    Twilight Zone is one of those shows that, despite it's increasing age (almost 50 years!), is as relevant today in its parables and messages as it was in the early 60's.

    Here are some of my favorite episodes, in no particular order;

    Time Enough at Last?A bank teller, longs for time alone to read. He gets his wish...

    The Monsters are Due on Maple Street?.Paranoia strikes the residents of Maple Street when they believe human-looking aliens have invaded the neighborhood.

    Nick of Time?.A superstitious newlywed becomes obsessed by a penny fortune-telling machine when he and his new wife are stranded with car trouble.

    The Odyssey of Flight 33?.A commercial aircraft mysteriously travels back through time.

    Long Distance Call?.A young boy finds he can communicate with his dead grandmother through a toy phone.

    Will the Real Martian Please Stand Up?.Troopers follow the tracks from a frozen pond, into a diner. Inside they find a soda jerk, a bus driver and his seven passengers. The bus driver is certain only six people boarded his bus?

    The Obsolete Man?.In a future state where religion and books have been banned, a librarian is judged obsolete and sentenced to death.

    The Shelter?.When a UFO invasion appears imminent, several suburban friends and neighbours fight over control of a single bomb shelter.

    The Grave?.Before he died, notorious gunslinger Pinto Sykes put a curse on hired-gun Conny Miller. Miller returns to town and is challenged to visit the grave of Sykes, despite the curse.

    It's a Good Life?.Little Anthony Fremont controls an entire town with his ability to read minds and make people do as he wishes. Which is a real good thing.

    To Serve Man?.The Kanamits, 9 foot tall aliens, arrive on Earth with one lofty goal: To Serve Man.

    The Dummy?.A ventriloquist is convinced that his dummy, Willie, is alive and evil. He makes plans for a new act with a new dummy: plans that Willie doesn't approve of.

    Nightmare at 20,000 Feet?.THE classic TZ episode. Recent emotional breakdown victim Mr. Wilson believes he sees a destructive gremlin on the wing of his commercial aircraft. .

    Night Call?.Mysterious phone calls haunt a disabled woman.

    Nothing in the Dark?.A lonely old woman refuses to leave her apartment for fear of meeting "Mr. Death."

    Living Doll?.Emotionally abusive Erich is displeased when his wife buys an expensive "Talking Tina" for his step-daughter. He becomes even more displeased when the doll tells him it doesn't like him and is going to kill him.
  11. -RebelScum- Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Feb 21, 2004
    star 6
    Hm, I would have thought Time Enough at Last would have been the most classic TZ episode.

    -The Scummy-
  12. Warrior_of_Mandalore Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Aug 1, 2003
    star 4
    I agree.

    And The Dummy freaked me out so much when I was a kid that I didn't watch the show for a year. :_|

    Warrior_of_Mandalore Strikes Again!
  13. denryanj Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Oct 22, 2003
    Hm, I would have thought Time Enough at Last would have been the most classic TZ episode.

    -The Scummy-
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------


    I agree.


    A very valid point. Certainly one of the top two or three. One could make the argument that The Invaders, It's A Good Life and To Serve Man are THE quintessential TZ episodes as well.

    I dubbed "Nightmare" as such based simply on, 1: my own personal affection for it(and for the works of Matheson), and 2:my belief that "Nightmare" has engrained itself in the collective cultural conciousness as "THE TWILIGHT ZONE" slightly more than the others.



  14. -RebelScum- Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Feb 21, 2004
    star 6
    I'd seen maybe 3-4 episodes when I made this thread, but I noticed the 12:30 reruns and now I've been watching them like a madman, they are brillaint. :) (stood up to time better then almost anything else I have ever seen)

    -The Scummy-
  15. Rogue1-and-a-half Manager Emeritus who is writing his masterpiece

    Member Since:
    Nov 2, 2000
    star 8
    Brilliant show. I've seen probably twenty or so episodes thanks to various marathons. I recently tried to get the first season DVD set through Interlibrary Loan but it didn't work.

    Undaunted, I pressed on and Treasures of the Twilight Zone, four episodes on two videos has just come in.

    I'll keep you posted on my thoughts on those episodes. It may take a while to get through the entire series, getting these little dinky sets through interlibrary loan, but I'll do it. :p
  16. Rogue1-and-a-half Manager Emeritus who is writing his masterpiece

    Member Since:
    Nov 2, 2000
    star 8
    Last night, I started the set. First episode is conveniently also the first of the series, Where is Everybody? I'll post little bullet reviews as I watch them all . . . it should be mentioned that there will be spoilers.

    Gimmick

    A man wanders through a strange town that is completely and utterly deserted.

    Great Moments:

    There's a fantastic moment when our hero enters the police station and finds a still burning cigar in an ashtray. And then when he enters a cell, he nearly gets locked in . . . the moment of him facing the other way as we see the shadow of the door slowly start to swing closed is a masterpiece.

    Final Analysis:

    As with most stories that use the 'everyone has disappeared' gimmick, this one succeeds much better as a mystery than it does once you know what's actually going on. In other words, the solution is a let down of a sort.

    But the body of the episode is brilliantly done. Nothing creepier than absolute isolation.

    Closing Remarks:

    "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."

    Love the central thesis though . . . go without human interaction for a long period of time and you'll crack. And the idea of the psychological breakdown of a man on a space mission has been done since, but this is very well done.

  17. Rogue1-and-a-half Manager Emeritus who is writing his masterpiece

    Member Since:
    Nov 2, 2000
    star 8
    Last night, I watched The Encounter, the episode that finds a young Japanese man and an ex-Marine stranded in an attic together, as a cursed samurai sword effects the actions of both.

    This was apparently a controversial episode that was never aired after its original airing, at least as of the early nineties it hadn't been.

    Sad, because it's one of the best I've seen of the entire series. Both characters are brilliantly drawn and, far from allowing us easy outs, both characters have moments of despicable action and of quiet sympathy. In the end, we pity both and agree with neither, a difficult balance to pull off.

    A great tragedy, more about the devestating effects of fear than about any curse. Brilliant. Television at its most artistic and challenging.

  18. KennethMorgan Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Sep 29, 2004
    star 2
    As I understand it, the original scripted ending was slightly different, in that there was one last unsolved mystery: When they pulled him out of the box, how did a ticket from the theater end up in his pocket?
  19. Rogue1-and-a-half Manager Emeritus who is writing his masterpiece

    Member Since:
    Nov 2, 2000
    star 8
    I've heard that, but the version of the story I heard had Serling being unhappy with the original script and when he rewrote it for an anthology, he added the movie ticket at the end.

    Whichever way, it's interesting, considering that it's supposedly the only episode that is completely explainable without supernatural elements.

  20. Rogue1-and-a-half Manager Emeritus who is writing his masterpiece

    Member Since:
    Nov 2, 2000
    star 8
    Last night, I watched one I'd seen before, several years ago.

    An Occurance at Owl Creek Bridge

    A railroad saboteur faces hanging for his crimes.

    This is the one that Serling just picked up from some French filmmakers and dropped it into his series. Yet another reason this series was groundbreaking: an anthology show that actually incorporates short films from other countries. Wowser. Kudos.

    I was familiar with the short story before I saw the film years ago and I found them both incredibly disturbing.

    This may just get my vote for most disturbing half hour of television. I was curious how it would play a second time. Guess what, it's worse. This has got to be one of the most horrifying sucker punches of all time and that closing image is just devestating.

    It really crosses a line for me, from disturbingly entertaining to just purely disturbing. Odd the things that punch our respective buttons, but I almost don't even find this worth the effort. It's too good . . . it makes me literally feel sick inside.

    So, kudos to the filmmakers for a brilliantly executed effort and Kudos to Serling for the nerve to pick it up and run with it.

    But I'll probably never watch it again.
  21. Leto II Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Jan 23, 2000
    star 6
    An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge -- terrific episode; Palme d'Or at the Cannes Festival, if memory serves, and a short-film Oscar.

    Serling bought airing rights for an abbreviated cut of the award-winning short film, because that way he could bring an episode in *waaaay* under budget, get some breathing space in his production schedule, and get a decent piece of work on the air...a clear win-win-win situation.

    Although I recall hearing that the Cayuga assignees were negotiating for the rights on it and a couple of the TZ eps (like "Miniatures"), which were left out of the original deal. (Never, *EVER* watch the Twilight Zone episode with Neville Brand and a very young George Takei in it; it's an atrocity which earned such flak that it was only run once, and the switch was pulled on it in a number of markets during the first run, with audiences in some markets only getting to see the first 2/3rds of it.)

    Just got a chance to look it up; though I thought it was a first-season episode, apparently I was off by about five seasons, since it was the last episode aired, in the last production season. (Feb 28, '64.) Marc Scott Zicree's *excellent* compilation of Old TZ info verifies that it was shown twice, and was not part of the syndication package as of 1982, when Zicree's Companion was published.

    Zicree reports that it also won an Oscar in its category, to go with the Cannes Film Festival Award, which makes it a pretty danged respectable piece of film by anybody's standards.

    A lovely piece of work, which plays well even forty years later.
  22. Rogue1-and-a-half Manager Emeritus who is writing his masterpiece

    Member Since:
    Nov 2, 2000
    star 8
    I have to disagree with you there: The Encounter is the one you're talking about and it's a brilliant dissection of racism.

    People seemded to think it was racist when in fact it was only about racism. I think it's essential viewing; manages to make both characters sympathetic and also despicable.

    It's like Serling says at the end; this episode is not about race, it's about 'guilt,' and that is something that crosses racial barriers.

    You'd think twenty years would have been sufficient time to allow someone to raise Pearl Harbor on television in an intelligent and complex way, but apparently not.

  23. Rogue1-and-a-half Manager Emeritus who is writing his masterpiece

    Member Since:
    Nov 2, 2000
    star 8
    Last night, I saw another one I've seen before, The Eye of The Beholder.

    This is a classic. The patient with the bandages around her head, the atmospheric Hermann score, the stunningly artistic shots that keep us from seeing the doctors and nurses until the very end. It's an obvious excercise . . . about thirty seconds in, you figure out what the punchline is, so it's a testimony to this series' genius that the episode is still enthralling.

    This is a classic, dead giveaway or not. Brilliant.
  24. Rogue1-and-a-half Manager Emeritus who is writing his masterpiece

    Member Since:
    Nov 2, 2000
    star 8
    I saw the remaining two episodes on the set over the weekend.

    The Masks was a rather by the numbers story about a wealthy man dying during Mardi Gras. His greedy relatives gather around him and he informs them, that if they want to inheret anything, they'll have to spend the evening, wearing some very interesting masks.

    The punchline is one of those you see coming a mile away, but the closing moment, when the old man, who has worn a death mask, finally dies and his mask is removed to show a face transfigured with peace is very moving.

    The Howling Man on the other hand was a fantastic effort. A man walking across Europe is lost in a storm and enters a strange monastary where the sounds of a prisoner howling in torment disquiet him. When he threatens to go to the police, the head of the monastary reveals the truth.

    The prisoner is not just any ordinary man; the prisoner is Satan himself.

    This was a brilliant episode, four star all the way. The climax is chilling and incredibly suspenseful and it manages to actually keep you guessing the whole way as to who's telling the truth.

    Loved it.

    I'm putting on order Image Entertainment's Vol. 14 DVD set now. I hope to work through the entire series eventually. :)
  25. Rogue1-and-a-half Manager Emeritus who is writing his masterpiece

    Member Since:
    Nov 2, 2000
    star 8
    Last night, I watched One for the Angels in which Death, played to the hilt by a smarmy Murray Hamilton (yes, the mayor from Jaws!), pays a visit to a street salesman. The salesman convinces death to let him live until he has made the big pitch he's always wanted, a pitch for the angels, as he calls it. Death agrees, but this new arrangement means that he has to select an alternate . . .

    A fun episode, even though the logic doesn't really hold up. Fine performances by both leads with Ed Wynn and Murray Hamilton both very good in their respective roles.

    Yes, the Image Entertainment, Vol. 14 DVD is here! Expect three more reviews in rapid succession. :p
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