The Twilight Zone Hall of Fame

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I wonder if we're going to see any nominations from season 4.
The lack of episodes from that season is curious. I noticed that the IMDB ratings of episodes from that season are lower on average. Like season 4 of Community, was there a different show runner that year?



The lack of episodes from that season is curious. I noticed that the IMDB ratings of episodes from that season are lower on average. Like season 4 of Community, was there a different show runner that year?
I don't know if the show runner changed, but I think season 4 generally gets criticized for being twice as long as the episodes from the other seasons. While a fair argument can be made against the longer runtime of the season though, I think there's a number of strong episodes from that season (The Thirty Fathom Grave, He's Alive, Jess-Belle, The New Exhibit, On Thursday We Leave for Home (my favorite episode from the season), and Passage on the Lady Anne). I watched the entire show back to back a few years ago, so I remember it taking me a couple episodes to adjust to the pacing, but after I did, I found a lot to enjoy about it.



I usually try to pick something that's lesser known for HoFs, rather than something that I think everyone has already seen, even if I think the more well-known one could win.

But I almost nominated the other Shatner TZ episode, "Nick of Time". That's a good one too, but I rarely hear anyone talk about it.
A double dose of Shat would've been great!

I don't know if the show runner changed, but I think season 4 generally gets criticized for being twice as long as the episodes from the other seasons. While a fair argument can be made against the longer runtime of the season though, I think there's a number of strong episodes from that season (The Thirty Fathom Grave, He's Alive, Jess-Belle, The New Exhibit, On Thursday We Leave for Home (my favorite episode from the season), and Passage on the Lady Anne). I watched the entire show back to back a few years ago, so I remember it taking me a couple episodes to adjust to the pacing, but after I did, I found a lot to enjoy about it.
Love all of those, considered several of them when I first made me a long list of all TZ possible noms.



I prefer series that have stand-alone episodes. My memory is pretty bad sometimes, so I usually forget the cliffhangers by the next episode, so I need to make sure that I don't miss the recap at the beginning of each episode or I'll be lost.
I see value in both.

I think that stand-alone episodes allow for greater flexibility in terms of casting (because someone only needs to commit to an episode not a season), and also allows for more audacious plotting because you can literally kill off the entire cast of characters if you want.

Serialized shows, on the other hand, allow more time to get to know the characters, and in later seasons this can lead to some really neat deep-dives and strong character work. When done correctly, there's also something really satisfying about a well-thought-out mythology.



The lack of episodes from that season is curious. I noticed that the IMDB ratings of episodes from that season are lower on average. Like season 4 of Community, was there a different show runner that year?

I found an article about Netflix and season 4 of Twilight Zone that might explain it.

https://thenightgallery.wordpress.co...twilight-zone/

Why Doesn’t Netflix Carry Season 4 of The Twilight Zone?

It’s not because Netflix couldn’t get the rights to Season 4 or anything like that. It’s simply that they don’t want to pay for what is arguably TZ’s least-popular season.

Season 4, for those who aren’t already aware, is when The Twilight Zone began producing hour-long episodes. Eighteen of them (about half the length of a typical season back then) aired between January 3, 1963 and May 23, 1963. For Season 5, TZ reverted to the half-hour format that had served it so well during its first three seasons.
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Think you used enough dynamite there, Butch?
I found an article about Netflix and season 4 of Twilight Zone that might explain it.

https://thenightgallery.wordpress.co...twilight-zone/

Why Doesn’t Netflix Carry Season 4 of The Twilight Zone?

It’s not because Netflix couldn’t get the rights to Season 4 or anything like that. It’s simply that they don’t want to pay for what is arguably TZ’s least-popular season.

Season 4, for those who aren’t already aware, is when The Twilight Zone began producing hour-long episodes. Eighteen of them (about half the length of a typical season back then) aired between January 3, 1963 and May 23, 1963. For Season 5, TZ reverted to the half-hour format that had served it so well during its first three seasons.
That's pretty interesting. I do know that Hulu carries all five seasons.
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Tomorrow, this HoF will officially start. You'll still have a week after the deadline to join, but if you're still interested in participating, I recommend letting me know pretty soon.



Allow me to kick us off:

"A Game of Pool" CONTAINS SPOILERS

This is a tense and thought-provoking episode for how it asks, "what if Jacob Marley didn't make Ebenezer Scrooge meet three ghosts on Christmas Eve? What if they played pool instead?" I say this because I see Scrooge in Jesse Cardiff, a man who put his ambition to be the best pool player at the expense of what's best in life - just like what Scrooge did to succeed at business - and Fats as Marley, who realized the folly of this approach much too late...or did he? Whether that's Fats' true story or not is what I like the most about the episode: that it leaves this question and others up to the viewer. Did Fats really get to enjoy pleasures in life that Cardiff did not like romance, travel, etc., or is he just expressing regrets he's had while dwelling in his own personal hell? Did Fats let Cardiff win so that he'd pass his afterlife burden on to him or is Cardiff really that good? Whatever the answers may be, the episode works for how it made me think about what's worth sacrificing in the pursuit of being the best at something and what isn't. If you spend your days in an empty pool hall instead of one with plenty of drinks, tunes queued up on the jukebox and good company, the odds are high that you gave up more of the latter than the former. Oh, and how good are Klugman and Winters in this? If the story doesn't resonate with you, the acting masterclass they deliver surely will.
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Oof, Torgo beat me.

Anyways, yeah, this HoF has officially started, so feel free to start watching and reviewing the episodes. The deadline is set to January 21st, which means one week for every two episodes. The nominations can be found in the first post in this thread.



Oof, Torgo beat me.
Ha, I couldn't help myself. I was...

in the zone (sorry).

That deadline works for me! I know what I'll be doing during the holidays.



Don't know if it's been mentioned, so can I just give a shout out to The Changing of the Guard (1962)?



Over the years this has become one of my favorite episodes - practically a holiday episode (as it takes place just before Christmas).
For some reason I didn't take notice of it when I was younger, but now I can't get through it without crying.

In his last post, @Torgo mentioned Scrooge - well, I call this episode Dickens' A Christmas Carol meets Goodbye Mr. Chips.

So touching is the story as an elderly professor receives his forced retirement notice from the school he works for, and is on the verge of ultimate despair; thinking his entire career was in vain, only to be granted an epiphany by a visitation from his former students.

Donald Pleasence is brilliant in the role. I can't say enough about this episode. If you're ever feeling hopeless, this is one to lift you up.



Think you used enough dynamite there, Butch?




Season 1: Episode 2: One for the Angels (1959 Series)

SPOILERS


Lou Bookman (Ed Wynn), a Pitchman, is visited by Death (Murray Hamilton) and is informed that he will die at midnight.
One of Rod Serling's recurring themes involves the Everlife. I've always enjoyed Serling's approach to the Subject of the Business of Death. In this particular episode, we experience a more heartfelt, and at moments, a kind of whimsical look as Bookman looks to extend his mortal stay somehow. Then, when he fouls up the set Schedule, Bookman must pitch his way into rectifying those results.

Along with being a truly excellent short story writer, Serling was able to tap into some great actors and glean some solid performances. Wynn (whom I've loved as Walt Disney's Mad Hatter "Happy UnBirthday to YOU" for one) is quite ideal as the tired, lovable old pitchman who lives for the neighborhood kids. In comparison, Hamilton gives the business-oriented Death a subtle mixture of gravitas and someone just doing their job.
The mid-show twist of whom Death uses to replace Bookman is just excellent writing and the ending of the two of them walking down the street representing a peaceful departure, in the end, is quite a lovely ending.



Don't know if it's been mentioned, so can I just give a shout out to The Changing of the Guard (1962)?

.
.
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So touching is the story as an elderly professor receives his forced retirement notice from the school he works for, and is on the verge of ultimate despair; thinking his entire career was in vain, only to be granted an epiphany by a visitation from his former students
These days, the thing of having former students who have died is hard for me to watch. I have not lost any of my students, but most of my co-workers have. I love the episode, but I find it a bit more melancholy than uplifting.



Think you used enough dynamite there, Butch?




Season 1: Episode 8: Time Enough at Last (1959 Series)

SPOILERS

When you think of Twilight Zone, this one is iconic for those you quickly remember. Burgess Meredith is Henry Bemis, an avid reader and a henpecked Bank Employee. He is denied his one true love: literature by his boss and his critical wife. Til, one day, taking his usual lunch inside the vault, he survives a Hydrogen bomb attack that wipes out everyone. And yes, the Science is a bit screwy since there is no nuclear fallout, radiation, AND no bodies. But, so what! Because this is Twilight Zone, behind the fourth dimension, etc., etc., etc.
Tossed in the pathos and the ironic gift beneath, Meredith is a delight as the sweet, gentle, bespeckled Bemis who comes to grips with being truly alone. A weight so heavy that he puts a gun to his side, not wanting to go on alone.
But, wait, there are books. So many, many books, and now Henry Bemis has "Time Enough at Last."
And then - the cruel twist happens.



Allow me to kick us off:

"A Game of Pool" CONTAINS SPOILERS

This is a tense and thought-provoking episode for how it asks, "what if Jacob Marley didn't make Ebenezer Scrooge meet three ghosts on Christmas Eve? What if they played pool instead?" I say this because I see Scrooge in Jesse Cardiff, a man who put his ambition to be the best pool player at the expense of what's best in life - just like what Scrooge did to succeed at business - and Fats as Marley, who realized the folly of this approach much too late...or did he? Whether that's Fats' true story or not is what I like the most about the episode: that it leaves this question and others up to the viewer. Did Fats really get to enjoy pleasures in life that Cardiff did not like romance, travel, etc., or is he just expressing regrets he's had while dwelling in his own personal hell? Did Fats let Cardiff win so that he'd pass his afterlife burden on to him or is Cardiff really that good? Whatever the answers may be, the episode works for how it made me think about what's worth sacrificing in the pursuit of being the best at something and what isn't. If you spend your days in an empty pool hall instead of one with plenty of drinks, tunes queued up on the jukebox and good company, the odds are high that you gave up more of the latter than the former. Oh, and how good are Klugman and Winters in this? If the story doesn't resonate with you, the acting masterclass they deliver surely will.

Rather than the Scrooge connection, this episode reminded me more of the movie The Gunfighter (1950). The idea that others will always want to challenge him to prove that they are better than the best. And that they will find out what the "reward" is for being the best.


There's a song by Bobby Bare called "The Winner" that plays on this theme too. It's about everything that you get by being "the winner".








Season 1: Episode 2: One for the Angels (1959 Series)

SPOILERS


Lou Bookman (Ed Wynn), a Pitchman, is visited by Death (Murray Hamilton) and is informed that he will die at midnight.
One of Rod Serling's recurring themes involves the Everlife. I've always enjoyed Serling's approach to the Subject of the Business of Death. In this particular episode, we experience a more heartfelt, and at moments, a kind of whimsical look as Bookman looks to extend his mortal stay somehow. Then, when he fouls up the set Schedule, Bookman must pitch his way into rectifying those results.

Along with being a truly excellent short story writer, Serling was able to tap into some great actors and glean some solid performances. Wynn (whom I've loved as Walt Disney's Mad Hatter "Happy UnBirthday to YOU" for one) is quite ideal as the tired, lovable old pitchman who lives for the neighborhood kids. In comparison, Hamilton gives the business-oriented Death a subtle mixture of gravitas and someone just doing their job.
The mid-show twist of whom Death uses to replace Bookman is just excellent writing and the ending of the two of them walking down the street representing a peaceful departure, in the end, is quite a lovely ending.

I loved how Mr. Death got so involved in listening to Bookman that he didn't realize what was happening. He gets mad when he hears the bells chime and realizes about the deadline, and he even has to compose himself when he finally realizes what Bookman was doing. It was so well done.



Rather than the Scrooge connection, this episode reminded me more of the movie The Gunfighter (1950). The idea that others will always want to challenge him to prove that they are better than the best. And that they will find out what the "reward" is for being the best.
The Gunfighter is exactly the film I was thinking of, too (I just watched it recently). When you're "the best"--or the toughest, or the fastest, or whatever--there will always be someone gunning for you.



Think you used enough dynamite there, Butch?
I loved how Mr. Death got so involved in listening to Bookman that he didn't realize what was happening. He gets mad when he hears the bells chime and realizes about the deadline, and he even has to compose himself when he finally realizes what Bookman was doing. It was so well done.
I agree that was a great moment. The way he got rapt up in Bookman's pitches, snatching up everything and then the sudden realization of what happened. Very much loved the playfulness of the storyline.



Season 3 Episode 5: A Game of Pool

(SPOILERS AHEAD)

This is a powerful episode which explores the darker side of what it means to be the best at something and what the consequences of achieving that title are. Jesse Cardiff, the subject of the episode, desires that title. He spent most of his life in the pool hall to improve his skills, completely sacrificing his social life in the process. Though Cardiff didn't appear to be bothered with this, a dichotomy exists between him and Fats since Fats lived a full life in comparison and got to experience much more than Cardiff did, in addition to establishing his reputation as a great pool player. Though Cardiff eventually beats Fats, he discovers that, even if you're the best at something, you will always have rivals who'll want to challenge you to prove they're better than you and you'll have to continue to defend your title against those people until you lose. Being the best doesn't give you a life of luxury. Rather, being relieved of all that stress will, as we learn with Fats' outcome in the end. Topped with some strong acting from Jack Klugman and Jonathan Winters, this episode has a lot to offer.