"You're traveling through another dimension, a dimension not only of sight and sound but of mind; a journey into a wondrous land whose boundaries are that of the imagination. Next stop: THE TWILIGHT ZONE."
—Two opening narrations by Rod Serling
I was a mere 7 years old when the Twilight Zone came out and completely without Adult Supervision, so I could watch any of those "Cold War" paranoia shows like T.Z. and The Outer Limits. If I had kids today, I'm torn as to whether I'd let them see the shows before 12 or even 15 years old. I know that the shows had a permanent effect on me and I can't tell if that's good or bad. I'd hate to do that to a kid, willingly. Maybe I'd let them watch the shows when they turned 21 years old.
Time Enough at Last
Writer: Rod Serling
Director: John Brahm
Nearsighted, meek bank clerk Henry Bernis is the sole survivor of an H-bomb attack. At last he has the time to engulf himself in his passion for books. Or so he thinks.
CAST: Burgess Meredith, Vaughn Taylor, Jacqueline de Wit, Lela Bliss.
Because I grew up during the Nuclear Age, I remember being taught to hide under my desk (W.T.F???) to protect myself from radiation, like that desk was a lead shield. So, when I saw the above show, I would carry a small magnifying lens on a string around my neck, just in case I was the last kid on Earth and I needed to read stuff. Forget the fact that I didn't wear glasses and still don't....I was prepared for NOT being able to see, if there was a bomb explosion. (I think I got the magnifying lens out of a box of Cracker Jack's)
The Monsters Are Due on Maple Street
Writer: Rod Serling
Director: Ron Winston
A mysterious power failure causes paranoid suburban residents to suspect one another of being disguised creatures from outer space.
CAST: Claude Akins, Jack Weston, Barry Atwater, Jan Handzlik, Burt Metcalfe, Mary Gregory, Anne Barton, Lea Waggner, Ben Erway, Lyn Guild, Sheldon Allman, William Walsh.
THIS show still haunts me; it could be an appendix to To Kill A Mockingbird. I've never seen Mob Mentality so forcefully done, and in 30 minutes, no less.
Nightmare at 20,000 Feet
Writer: Richard Matheson, based on his short story
Director: Richard Donner
A newly released mental patient is the only one able to see a gremlin ripping up the wing of his airliner. CAST: William Shatner, Christine White, Nick Cravat, Edward Kammer, Asa Maynor.
Maybe it's because I was young (now 12) or maybe I just naturally hated to fly, but to this day, I look outside, at the wing of the aircraft, completely expecting to see this "gremlin" ripping off the wing! I'm a complete wreck on International Flights; I have 8-10 hours that I have to keep 'post' over the wing......she-e-e-e-s-h...
What's cool about rewatching the shows, is to see all the extraordinarily famous people that were in them: one's that had already established their fame, and ones that were seeking it. Here's a partial list: "
The series featured such soon-to-be-famous actors as Robert Redford, William Shatner, Burt Reynolds, Robert Duvall, Dennis Hopper, Carol Burnett, James Coburn, Charles Bronson, Lee Marvin, Peter Falk and Bill Mumy, as well as such established stars as silent-film giant Buster Keaton, Art Carney, Mickey Rooney, Ida Lupino and John Carradine. "
If you want to visit a complete site for The Twilight Zone, here's the link: