the year of LIVING UNOFFICIALLY

365 days of celebration

11
May

Twilight Zone Day

Posted by Brittany

Twilight Zone DayThe first episode of The Twilight Zone aired in October 1959. The show, which mixed various genres of fantasy, drama, and science fiction, quickly became a popular and critical success. Rod Serling, the series creator, wrote many of the scripts and used the show’s fantasy aspect as a method for delivering social commentary at a time when most television dramas were not permitted to address potentially volatile issues. The original series produced 156 episodes over five seasons, and inspired two revivals, a film, a radio show, and a comic book — not to mentions the imaginations of millions of viewers.

My parents were fans of The Twilight Zone and I remember watching reruns of the old black and white series with them when I was younger. I actually liked anything that leaned toward the macabre, like The Hitchhiker, Tales from the Darkside, and Tales from the Crypt, but The Twilight Zone was my favorite. The show had a certain class to it, and a campiness that made it fun, even while it challenged societal issues like racism and war. With it’s twist endings and moral compass, the series was thought-provoking and entertaining at the same time. Plus, how many television shows boast a kick-ass ride in Disney World!

To celebrate Twilight Zone Day, Chris and I turned once again to our Netflix account and streamed the fist three episodes of the first season of the original series: Where Is Everybody?, One For the Angels, and Mr. Denton on Doomsday. These first three episodes aren’t quite as memorable as classics like Time Enough at Last or To Serve Man, but I wanted to get a perspective of the series’ original momentum. As I was watching I couldn’t help but wonder what it would have been like to be seeing these stories for the first time, back in 1959. Since The Twilight Zone essentially introduced science fiction to a lot of people who otherwise might not have sought exposure to the genre, I can see why it was such a success. The series offered something new, addressing timely topics packaged neatly with popular actors. My only complaint is that the classic twilight zone music wasn’t added until the second season, so we made it through Twilight Zone Day without hearing the familiar tune. But now that I know the series is available on Netflix streaming, I have a feeling I’ll be watching something like another 153 episodes.

Put your rhyming caps on — tomorrow is Limerick Day!

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