The Twilight Zone Hall of Fame

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11 Foreign Language movies to go
SPOILERS with Robert Redford in them...

Season 3 : Episode 16 - Nothing in the Dark : Gladys Cooper stars here as an old lady who really doesn't want to die, existing in one of those fabled worlds where Death comes to the front door - or at least he does in her reckoning. It's her fear of death that makes her reluctant to save a dying policeman who has been shot and needs help. He's just outside her front door - and he's Robert Redford, who had been appearing on television here and there for a couple of years now. She helps in him in the end, swayed by his pleas. When they've talked for a while, and she's conveyed just how determined she is not to let Death in the door, I thought I had this episode pegged. I thought that Death would indeed make his way in, but instead of taking the old lady (Wanda, sorry, that's rude) he'd take the policeman and let her keep living. If somebody could have told me I was wrong right away I'm sure my second guess would have been that Robert Redford is Death. Anyway, somebody comes to tell her she's being evicted, and that they're about to tear her apartment building down. He's meant to be Death, but he comes and goes without even noticing Mr. Sundance Kid and that's when the surprise is unfurled. Anyway, it's a nice ending, because the old la...Wanda seems quite happy once she's pacified and shown that she's already dead and holding hands with Robert Redford.



They really cast Death well on The Twilight Zone - during this Hall of Fame we've had Murray Hamilton and Robert Redford doing the duties, and I enjoyed seeing them both. I'm hoping when it comes my turn I get perhaps late 1970s Jessica Harper to ease the shock, but I'm sure once Death gets you to the processing center he/she dumps you there quick and that's the last you see of him/her. Around 2 people die every second worldwide, and to tell you the truth, I thought that number would be higher. This is the kind of Twilight Zone (or Alfred Hitchcock Presents) episode that lights up because a young talented name shows up and really makes it worth watching. I saw Robert Redford in an episode of the latter recently, as well as Robert Duvall in a really great episode. I hope we get an Alfred Hitchcock Presents Hall of Fame one day.

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11 Foreign Language movies to go
SPOILERS with Anne Francis in them...

Season 1 : Episode 34 - The After Hours : "Marsha....Marsha....Marsha....Marsha" All Marsha (Anne Francis) wants is a gold thimble - but the people serving her in the department store she's gone to are giving her strange looks. The elevator operator takes her to the 9th floor, which is deserted except for one lady who only has one thing to sell - the gold thimble she's looking for. Marsha knows this is strange, and asks questions about it but is rebuffed. When she finds that the thimble she bought is no good, she goes to complain - but she looks very odd when she does. You see, this department store doesn't have a 9th floor. What's more, when she spots the woman who was serving her she finds to her shock that it's a mannequin. It's all a bit too much for Marsha, and after having a rest she walks through the store and feels the presence of all the mannequins looking at her. Calling her. "Marsha...Marsha....Marsha...." Herded back to the 9th floor, she's reminded that she too is a mannequin, and has overstayed her one month per year in the real world. She remembers now - and the next day the management man who was helping her sees her on the floor - as a mannequin...


In picking an original series episode to nominate, I had the few from season 2 that I'd seen or all of season 1 - and I went for the one that had left the longest impression on me - The After Hours, which veers down a very creepy and scary path before ending on a much more pleasant note - and opting for one shot of humour before ending. Personally, I liked the concept of Marsha somehow forgetting who she really was while living as a real human. It made me reflect on all of our lives, and if we have perhaps forgotten something just by becoming who we are. Of course, having Anne Francis as the main character really sealed the deal.




11 Foreign Language movies to go
3 times the story = 3 times the SPOILER

Revival Series - Season 1 : Episode 2 - Okay, the revival series of The Twilight Zone did things a little differently at first, although it would go on to mutate further, later on down the track. Several smaller tales would be told, ranging from 10 to 15 minutes to only a couple of minutes here and there. The first story in this episode, Wordplay, features a salesman played by Robert Klein who slowly begins to lose the ability to communicate with those around him when the meaning of certain words start to scramble. At first it's only encyclopedia for puppy, but as more and more words lose their old meaning he becomes less and less able to function as an adult and responsible parent. The second story, Dreams for Sale, features a woman on a picnic where reality starts to distort and repeat - and she briefly becomes aware of really being someone else who is being fed some kind of artificial reality experience straight into her brain. As the machine she's in continues to malfunction she suddenly finds that she may indeed find herself living this alternate existence permanently. The third and most substantial story, Chameleon, features an alien entity finding it's way to Earth on the Space Shuttle with the ability to transform it's shape into anything it has previously touched - in the crux ending of the episode, it invites Dr. Curt Lockridge (Terry O'Quinn) to come with it and experience all the wonders of the universe. Feeling a daunting sense of fear, he declines, and must live the rest of his life with the realization of what he might have gone on to see - but now never will.



I have an early Hall of Fame habit in wanting very much to add something outside the box to whatever is already there - a diversion, and something different - perhaps something nobody has yet seen. It's pretty unreliable as far as voting results go - I've learned that already, but I was familiar with the revival of The Twilight Zone, and since we all had 2 picks I was determined to add the only entry from a different series. This was a nostalgic choice for me, as I'd remembered Wordplay and Dreams for Sale from when I was a kid, watching this show in the 1980s. In fact, Dreams for Sale gave me my first appreciation for what virtual reality could encompass - and the philosophical quandary of never being able to know if the lives we are living right now are not some kind of virtual reality that we might one day awaken from to find we have another life we've forgotten, behind the curtain. Imagine my surprise when I found that both Wordplay and Dreams for Sale were both part of the one episode. More ironic than that, though, is the fact that Chameleon (the story I had forgotten) is probably the best story of the episode, especially with that ending. I have no doubts at all that this episode will finish last - but I like Hall of Fames for watching other people's nominations and voting for them. When I rate this - it is with rose coloured glasses on, but I am pretty fond of the episode.




The only thing that felt missing from all of that was the nomination of Nightmare at 20,000 Feet. I wonder if it would have won.
I thought of nominating that one, but decided to go with two different episodes instead. Maybe it will get nominated if we make a part 2 to this thread though.



I can't even imagine narrowing the huge catalogue of TZ down to a single episode. I can see, if forced, I might go with Midnight Sun, because its so delicious in its inescapable dread. Or possibly Will the Real Martian Please Stand Up, as it is one of the somewhat lighthearted episodes that would be on my short list (I prefer my TZ's mean and nasty). But for an episode that wasn't selected here, I see a conspicuous absence of The Howling Man. So I might have been forced to go with that one. Or to just throw a curve ball, an episode I always thought might ultimately be second rate, but has a great set up--"Four Characters in Search of an Exit". Definitely not a classic, but for years I never saw the end of this one, and it just haunted me as to where it could have been going (turns out, nowhere great, but still, opens with such a sense of absurdist mystery I have a deep fondness for it)



I can't even imagine narrowing the huge catalogue of TZ down to a single episode. I can see, if forced, I might go with Midnight Sun, because its so delicious in its inescapable dread. Or possibly Will the Real Martian Please Stand Up, as it is one of the somewhat lighthearted episodes that would be on my short list (I prefer my TZ's mean and nasty). But for an episode that wasn't selected here, I see a conspicuous absence of The Howling Man. So I might have been forced to go with that one. Or to just throw a curve ball, an episode I always thought might ultimately be second rate, but has a great set up--"Four Characters in Search of an Exit". Definitely not a classic, but for years I never saw the end of this one, and it just haunted me as to where it could have been going (turns out, nowhere great, but still, opens with such a sense of absurdist mystery I have a deep fondness for it)
The Midnight Sun was one of my two nominations, in fact

The Howling Man is one of my favorite episodes from season 2, but I didn't like it quite enough to nominate it. I love the disorienting cinematography and the sense of inevitability in it though.



The Howling Man & Four Characters in Search of an Exit...like both of those. I have one episode that I'm going to nominate next time we do this, it ain't popular but I like the woman in it, she's so self absorbed.



If you ever have a Hall of Fame for worst TZ episode, I already have my nomination ready.

The Bewitchin' Pool.


While I have no doubt there may be worse (I wouldn't be surprised if there are upwards of twenty half hour episodes I've never seen, not to mention I've only seen one of the hour long ones), it is one of the few I've ever seen where absolutely none of it worked for me. The set up, the characters, the twist, the execution. Ugh. Uninspired is the only word. Deeply uninspired.



If you ever have a Hall of Fame for worst TZ episode, I already have my nomination ready.

The Bewitchin' Pool.


While I have no doubt there may be worse (I wouldn't be surprised if there are upwards of twenty half hour episodes I've never seen, not to mention I've only seen one of the hour long ones), it is one of the few I've ever seen where absolutely none of it worked for me. The set up, the characters, the twist, the execution. Ugh. Uninspired is the only word. Deeply uninspired.
Yeah, that one is horrible. In addition to its awful message which seems to be arguing in favor of running away from home if your parents are going through a divorce, it also has an unnecessary frame narrative in the opening and the child actors are annoying.

With that being said, I like season 4 quite a bit and, while one could make a fair argument against its longer running time, I think it offers a lot of great episodes, like The Thirty-Fathom Grave, He's Alive, Jess-Belle, Miniature, The New Exhibit, and Passage on the Lady Anne. Also, I said it earlier in this thread, but On Thursday We Leave for Home is not only my favorite episode in season 4, but also my #1 favorite episode in the entire show.



Yeah, that one is horrible. In addition to its awful message which seems to be arguing in favor of running away from home if your parents are going through a divorce, it also has an unnecessary frame narrative in the opening and the child actors are annoying.

With that being said, I like season 4 quite a bit and, while one could make a fair argument against its longer running time, I think it offers a lot of great episodes, like The Thirty-Fathom Grave, He's Alive, Jess-Belle, Miniature, The New Exhibit, and Passage on the Lady Anne. Also, I said it earlier in this thread, but On Thursday We Leave for Home is not only my favorite episode in season 4, but also my #1 favorite episode in the entire show.
That's why I like it! It's so damn bizarre, but not good, just bizarre.



That's why I like it! It's so damn bizarre, but not good, just bizarre.
I feel like it's bizarre in a really bad way, personally. Some other TZ episodes have some bizarre moments as well, but they were executed much better, like the endings to Will the Real Martian please Stand Up? and Five Characters in Search of an Exit.



I feel like it's bizarre in a really bad way, personally. Some other TZ episodes have some bizarre moments as well, but they were executed much better, like the endings to Will the Real Martian please Stand Up? and Five Characters in Search of an Exit.
Oh I agree, it wasn't executed well, I just like the bizarreness of it.



The only thing that felt missing from all of that was the nomination of Nightmare at 20,000 Feet. I wonder if it would have won.

"Nightmare at 20,000 Feet" was on my shortlist of potential noms, but I was sure that someone else would nominate it, and I wanted to nominate a couple of my favorite episodes that we don't hear mentioned as much as some of the more popular episodes.
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11 Foreign Language movies to go
"Nightmare at 20,000 Feet" was on my shortlist of potential noms, but I was sure that someone else would nominate it, and I wanted to nominate a couple of my favorite episodes that we don't hear mentioned as much as some of the more popular episodes.
That's exactly the same reason I didn't nominate it.



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Season 3 Episode 5: A Game of Pool

Jack Klugman is a loner who does nothing but shoots pool and grumbles how no matter how [email protected] good he is, he only hears of the deceased legend "Fats" Brown (Johnathan Winters). He'd give "anything" to play him to show everyone he could beat him. Just like every other up-and-coming wannabe.
Thanks to Rod Serling, he gets his chance. And since it is Rod Serling, a wish comes with a fee. One that is more than you bargain for.

A two-man show, this episode follows a kind of Faust-esqu situation with hints of The Gunfighter film. Reminding us, the viewers, the price that The Best must continually pay. Dealing with every single challenger to the Title and Klugman's character discovers that when he plays "Fats" for the highest stakes of all.

On a Personal Note: Having grown up shooting pool I was always a stickler when it came to "shots" made in films and TV Shows and spent most of the time rolling my eyes at them. Not here. There were some seriously good shots made. The Bank Shots in particular. It also features a Pool Shooting Game that has faded away with the traditional Scoring Beads: 14 Plus 1. Which I never played but looks like a challenging strategic game.
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The world doesn't you owe you a damn thing



Season 1 Episode 28: A Nice Place to Visit

"Rocky" Valentine can't get a break. He's struggled, fought, and stole only to wind up dead in an alley, shot by the cops chasing him down after an unsuccessful robbery.
Enters Sabastian Cabot, whom I've loved growing up as both "Mr. French" and the "Narrator" for Disney's Winnie the Pooh.
He supplies "Rocky" with EVERYTHING. A great pad, broads, money, everything. Including consistently winning every gambling game, everything.
Until "Rocky" is so disgusted with and utterly bored with it all. How can this be Heaven? What gives?

Well, because it's not. It's the Other Place.

A fun twist of a bad thug thinking his ship finally came in, in the afterlife, when in fact, all that shimmers may be gold, but it don't mean squat in The Twilight Zone.



The world doesn't you owe you a damn thing



Season 3 Episode 8: It's a Good Life

This is another TZ episode that I feel is quite iconic. For me, anyway. It was one that scared and fascinated me as a kid when I watched it with so many others.

Billy Mummy pretty much nails it as the very dark and sinister child that has demanded that the neighboring folks come over and be happy for him. Otherwise. . . well, off to the cornfield you go.

Even now, I felt for the poor folks that bend to the mental "whip" that keeps them all in line and the one lonely individual who tries to get them to just get together; they could put an end to it all. But they're all too afraid to act out.

A writing exercise by Rod Serling remarking on a greater evil of when good folks cower to a bully's whim. Like so many Serling's stories, there is a wiser parable being told beyond the fantastic setting.