Author Topic: LOC 68: Top 50 Twilight Zone Episodes  (Read 27710 times)

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LOC 68: Top 50 Twilight Zone Episodes
« on: February 28, 2013, 06:22:13 PM »
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Re: LOC 68: Top 50 Twilight Zone Episodes
« Reply #1 on: February 28, 2013, 06:27:07 PM »
50.    An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge- 2/28/64
(20 points, 1 list of 8, highest ranking: #6 Tripe)
Twilight Zone Theme: The world is not as it appears
Creepiness Factor: 3 out of 10

"Tonight a presentation so special and unique that, for the first time in the five years we've been presenting The Twilight Zone, we're offering a film shot in France by others. Winner of the Cannes Film Festival of 1962, as well as other international awards, here is a haunting study of the incredible, from the past master of the incredible, Ambrose Bierce. Here is the French production of 'An Occurrence At Owl Creek Bridge."

As a Confederate spy is about to be hanged, the rope breaks and he falls to the water below. He dodges bullets and heads off for home. He finally reaches it, but as his wife hugs him he stiffens. Suddenly he is back at the bridge, hanging from a rope.

"An occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge - in two forms, as it was dreamed, and as it was lived and died. This is the stuff of fantasy, the thread of imagination... the ingredients of the Twilight Zone."

•   Confederate Spy: Roger Jacquet

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Re: LOC 68: Top 50 Twilight Zone Episodes
« Reply #2 on: February 28, 2013, 06:30:16 PM »
49. A Stopover in Quiet Town- 4/24/64
(20 points, 2 list of 8, highest ranking: #8 Sicgirl)
Twilight Zone Theme: Bad things happen to people who behave badly.
Creepiness Factor: 7 out of 10

"Bob and Millie Frazier, average young New Yorkers who attended a party in the country last night and on the way home took a detour. Most of us on waking in the morning know exactly where we are; the rooster or the alarm clock brings us out of sleep into the familiar sights, sounds, aromas of home and the comfort of a routine day ahead. Not so with our young friends. This will be a day like none they've ever spent - and they'll spend it in the Twilight Zone."

Bob and Millie wake up to find they are in a strange town. Everything appears to be props - trees, animals even cars. They try to catch a train and are picked up by a giant hand. They have been abducted by a giant alien, and are now the toys of his daughter.

"The moral of what you've just seen is clear. If you drink, don't drive. And if your wife has had a couple, she shouldn't drive either. You might both just wake up with a whale of a headache in a deserted village in the Twilight Zone."

•   Bob Frazier: Barry Nelson – Most notably the guy who Jack Nicholson’s character meets with about the caretaker job in The Shining
•   Millie Frazier: Nancy Malone

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Re: LOC 68: Top 50 Twilight Zone Episodes
« Reply #3 on: February 28, 2013, 06:31:20 PM »
48. Queen of the Nile- 3/6/64
(21 points, 1 list of 8, highest ranking: #5 Tripe)
Twilight Zone Theme: People who aren’t what they seem
Creepiness Factor: 5 out of 10

"Jordan Herrick, syndicated columnist whose work appears in more than a hundred newspapers. By nature a cynic, a disbeliever, caught for the moment by a lovely vision. He knows the vision he's seen is no dream; she is Pamela Morris, renowned movie star, whose name is a household word and whose face is known to millions. What Mr. Herrick does not know is that he has also just looked into the face - of the Twilight Zone."

Suspecting that Pamela Morris and Constance Taylor, an actress from many years ago, is the same person, he confronts Pamela. She drugs his coffee, then admits she really was a queen of the Nile. She uses a scarab and drains Herrick's life and uses it on herself.

"Everybody knows Pamela Morris, the beautiful and eternally young movie star. Or does she have another name, even more famous, an Egyptian name from centuries past? It's best not to be too curious, lest you wind up like Jordan Herrick, a pile of dust and old clothing, discarded in the endless eternity of the Twilight Zone."

•   Jordan Herrick: Lee Phillips – Will be seen again later in the list.
•   Pamela Morris: Ann Blyth
•   Viola Draper: Celia Lovsky

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Re: LOC 68: Top 50 Twilight Zone Episodes
« Reply #4 on: February 28, 2013, 06:33:06 PM »
47. Long Distance Call- 3/31/61
(21 points, 1 list of 8, highest ranking: #5 Tyrant)
Twilight Zone Theme: The dead communicating with the living
Creepiness Factor: 11 out of 10 (I refuse to watch this one)

"As must be obvious, this is a house hovered over by Mr. Death, that omnipresent player to the third and final act of every life. And it's been said, and probably rightfully so, that what follows this life is one of the unfathomable mysteries, an area of darkness which we the living reserve for the dead - or so it is said. For in a moment, a child will try to cross that bridge which separates light and shadow, and of course he must take the only known route, that indistinct highway through the region we call the Twilight Zone."

Grandma Bayles gives her five year-old grandson a toy phone for his birthday. Soon after she dies, and Billy is very upset. He quickly seems better while spending all his time talking into the toy phone. He tells his parents that Grandma is on the phone, and that she is lonely and wants him to come visit. His parent's dismiss this as a child's imagination, until he throws himself in front of a car. Billy tells his parent's that "someone" told him to do it. Late one night, his mother, hearing him talking on the toy phone, rushes in and grabs the phone - and hears breathing on the other end. Billy runs out of the house and tries to drown himself in the fish pond. A fire rescue team has no luck at reviving him. His father goes into his room and picks up the phone, and begins to plead with his mother to let Billy live. He tells her that if she really loves Billy she would allow him to grow up. Suddenly, Billy begins to respond.

"A toy telephone, an act of faith, a set of improbable circumstances, all combine to probe a mystery, to fathom a depth, to send a facet of light into a dark after-region, to be believed or disbelieved depending on your frame of reference. A fact or a fantasy, a substance or a shadow - but all of it very much a part of the Twilight Zone."

•   Billy Bayles: Billy Mumy- Creepiest child ever. 5 Twilight Zone appearances include the movie. Will be seen again later in the list.
•   Grandma Bayles: Lili Darvas
•   Chris Bayles: Philip Abbott- Most notably Arthur Ward on The F.B.I

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Re: LOC 68: Top 50 Twilight Zone Episodes
« Reply #5 on: February 28, 2013, 06:34:23 PM »
46. Button, Button- 3/7/1986
(21 points, 2 lists of 8, highest ranking: #6 Johnny Unusual)
Twilight Zone Theme: Mysterious object causes issues
Creepiness Factor: 8 out of 10

Arthur and Norma Lewis are slowly descending into abject poverty. One day, they receive a mysterious locked box with a button on it and a note that says a Mr. Steward will come visit. Then, just as the note says, a smartly dressed stranger who introduces himself as Steward comes to their door when Arthur is out. He gives Norma the key to the box and explains that, if they press the button, two things will happen: they will receive $200,000, and someone "whom you don't know" will die.

After the stranger leaves, the Lewises wonder whether Steward's proposal is genuine, and they agonize over whether to press the button. Norma rationalizes that they could make good use of the money and that the one who dies might be some Chinese peasant or cancer sufferer who is living a miserable life. Arthur takes the side that, since they do not know who will die, pressing the button may cause the death of an innocent baby. They open the box and discover no mechanism inside it—it is simply an empty box with a button on it. Arthur angrily throws the box in the trash.

However, in the middle of the night while Arthur is asleep, Norma goes to the apartment building's dumpster and retrieves the device. The next day, Arthur leaves for work and sees Norma sitting at the kitchen table, her gaze transfixed on the button. At the end of the day, he returns from work and it appears that nothing has changed; Norma is still sitting and concentrating only on the button. The days go by. Norma and Arthur keep talking about the box, when suddenly Norma decides that she will push the button.
However, the next day Mr. Steward returns, takes back the box, and gives them a briefcase with the $200,000. The Lewises are in shock and ask what will happen next. Steward ominously replies that the button will be "reprogrammed" and offered to someone else with the same terms and conditions, adding as he focuses on Norma: "I can assure you it will be offered to someone whom you don't know." A horrified, knowing expression crosses Norma's face.

•   Steward: Basil Hoffman- Also was in the movie version The Box
•   Arthur Lewis: Brad Davis- Played Billy Hayes in Midnight Express
•   Norma: Mare Winningham- I can’t express how much I can’t stand this actress.

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Re: LOC 68: Top 50 Twilight Zone Episodes
« Reply #6 on: February 28, 2013, 06:35:41 PM »
That's it for tonight!


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Re: LOC 68: Top 50 Twilight Zone Episodes
« Reply #7 on: February 28, 2013, 11:36:22 PM »
Barry Nelson also played square headed Jimmy Bond, in the American TV version of Casino Royale in 1954. I had Stopover on my list. Only one from my 25 so far.

While I like Owl Creek, I elected not to include it.

I didn't catch Queen of the Nile in my marathon, don't really remember it off the top of my head. I'll have to check it out. Edit: watched it and liked it. Reminds me of an earlier ep (Walter Jameson) but with a bit of a darker, eerier feel to its end. Cool to see Celia Lovsky (who played a Vulcan in the original Trek)

Long Distance Call was solid, but got a bit overwrought for me... plus I liked the other 'creepy call from the dead' episode better. ;)
« Last Edit: March 01, 2013, 01:42:05 AM by George Harrison »

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Re: LOC 68: Top 50 Twilight Zone Episodes
« Reply #8 on: March 01, 2013, 07:11:06 AM »
48. Queen of the Nile- 3/6/64
(21 points, 1 list of 8, highest ranking: #5 Tripe)
I almost did this one.  The scene with the scarab creeped the shit out of me when I was a kid.

Saw this one first years and years ago, it's probably one of the things that sparked an interest in Egyptology in me, it certainly made me eternally fond of scarabs. :)

Billy Bayles: Billy Mumy- Creepiest child ever.
But he's such a great aide-de-camp, you know, up to a point...


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Re: LOC 68: Top 50 Twilight Zone Episodes
« Reply #9 on: March 01, 2013, 06:03:04 PM »
45. Mirror Image- 2/26/60
(21 points, 3 lists of 8, highest ranking: #13 George Harrison)

Twilight Zone Theme: Parallel universe
Creepiness Factor: 7 out of 10

"Millicent Barnes, age twenty-four, young woman waiting for a bus on a rainy November night. Not a very imaginative type is Miss Barnes, not given to undue anxiety or fears, or for that matter even the most temporal flights of fancy. Like most young career women, she has a generic classification as a, quote, girl with a head on her shoulders, end of quote. All of which is mentioned now because in just a moment the head on Miss Barnes's shoulders will be put to a test. Circumstances will assault her sense of reality and a chain of nightmares will put her sanity on a block. Millicent Barnes, who in one minute will wonder if she's going mad."

Millicent Barnes is confused by the actions of various employees at the bus station. The ticket taker tells her that she has repeatedly asked when the bus is going to arrive, and that her suitcase has already been checked. The washroom attendant claims she was there a few seconds earlier. Yet she hasn't done any of these things. While in the washroom, she sees herself sitting on a bench out in the bus station. She runs out, but the room is empty. Paul Grinstead, a businessman, becomes concerned for Millicent. They go to board the bus, but Millicent runs back in after seeing her other self already on the bus. Paul stays to comfort Millicent, who now says she knows what is happenning: a mirror image of herself from another world has entered this world, and must take her place to survive. Paul, certain she's mentally ill, calls the police. After the police take Millicent away, Paul chases a man who he believes has stolen his case. As the man turns around, Paul realizes that the man is a duplicate of himself.

"Obscure metaphysical explanation to cover a phenomenon, reasons dredged out of the shadows to explain away that which cannot be explained. Call it parallel planes or just insanity. Whatever it is, you find it in the Twilight Zone."

•   Millicent Barnes: Vera Miles – Marion’s sister is Psycho
•   Paul Grinstead: Martin Milner – Best known from Adam-12 and Route 66

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Re: LOC 68: Top 50 Twilight Zone Episodes
« Reply #10 on: March 01, 2013, 06:03:56 PM »
44. The Library- 3/28/86
(22 points, 1 list of 8, highest ranking: #4 Imrahil)

Twilight Zone Theme: The world is not as it appears
Creepiness Factor: 5 out of 10

Ellen Pendleton, an aspiring writer looking to earn some money on the side, gets a job at a private library run by Gloria. Ellen soon finds out that this is no ordinary library; the books in it actually contain people's lives, updating with every moment. Gloria warns Ellen not to even look into the books, as that is something firmly prohibited by her masters.

When Ellen gets home and is disturbed by the noise of the neighbors, she decides to have a little revenge. The next morning, she re-writes a chapter in the book of her neighbor to make him a priest, and therefore not able to marry the woman from downstairs who caused all the fuss. But when Ellen gets home that night, she finds her sister Lori consoling the noisy woman, Carla, who is on the verge of nervous breakdown because of loneliness.
Deciding to fix this one as well, Ellen rewrites Carla's book to make her happily married to another neighbor, Doug. That indeed happens, but now the problem is that Doug is bankrupt from buying all those gifts for Carla. Ellen then fixes Doug's problems by giving him real estate wealth, only to find out that he is now her landlord, and that her sister is staging a protest against him raising the rent.

Thinking relocation will solve her problems once for all, Ellen rewrites her own book, setting her and Lori to live in a house by the sea. And even though that sounds fairly innocent, she returns home to find her sister nearly dead, as she drowned while attempting to save a little boy. She dashes back to the library and is caught by Gloria, who is incensed when she learns books have been tampered with. She quickly orders Ellen to gather all the books she rewrote and ushers her out of the library.
Much to her amazement, Ellen is met outside by Lori, looking alive and well. She rings the doorbell of the library, but the door is answered by an unknown man who claims to have been living there for the past ten years. Convinced now that things are in order, Ellen leaves with Lori.

Ellen Pendleton : Frances Conroy- Older Maid/Angel of Death from American Horror Story
Gloria: Uta Hagen 
Lori Pendleton : Lori Petty- Tank Girl!
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Re: LOC 68: Top 50 Twilight Zone Episodes
« Reply #11 on: March 01, 2013, 06:04:33 PM »
43. People Are Alike All Over - 3/25/60
(22 points, 1 list of 8, highest ranking: #4 Sicgirl)

Twilight Zone Theme: Aliens are bad
Creepiness Factor: 4 out of 10

"You're looking at a species of flimsy little two-legged animal with extremely small heads whose name is Man. Warren Marcusson, age thirty-five. Samuel A. Conrad, age thirty-one... They're taking a highway into space, Man unshackling himself and sending his tiny, groping fingers up into the unknown. Their destination is Mars, and in just a moment we'll land there with them."
Marcusson, the optimist that believes people are alike all over, is killed when their ship crashes on Mars. Conrad is terrified when he hears someone banging on the outside of the ship. He is relieved when he sees that the martians are human looking, but telepathic. The next day, the Martians give Conrad a home of his own. Left alone, he quickly realizes there are no windows and all the doors are locked. Suddenly, a wall slides up, revealing bars through which a crowd of Martians stand. Conrad then realizes he is in a zoo. He cries out, "Marcusson, you were right - people are alike everywhere."

"Species of animal brought back alive. Interesting similarity in physical characteristics to human beings in head, trunk, arms, legs, hands, feet. Very tiny undeveloped brain; comes from primitive planet named Earth. Calls himself Samuel Conrad. And he will remain here in this cage with the running water and the electricity and the central heat as long as he lives. Samuel Conrad has found the Twilight Zone."

•   Sam Conrad: Roddy McDowall- Best known for Planet of the Apes but has over 250 acting credits
•   Warren Marcusson: Paul Comi – Also in Conquest of the Planet of the Apes
•   Teenya: Susan Oliver – Once on Tarzan…that had an Ape
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Re: LOC 68: Top 50 Twilight Zone Episodes
« Reply #12 on: March 01, 2013, 06:05:15 PM »
42. I Sing the Body Electric- 5/18/62
(22 points, 1 list of 8, highest ranking: #4 Pak)

Twilight Zone Theme: Robots are good
Creepiness Factor: 6 out of 10

"They make a fairly convincing pitch here. It doesn't seem possible, though, to find a woman who might be ten times better than mother in order to seem half as good - except, of course, in the Twilight Zone."

A widower buys a robot grandmother for his three children. Two of the children take to her immediately, but one, Anne, doesn't. The robot reminds her too much of her mother. A woman she hates for leaving her. When Anne accidentally walks in front of an oncoming van, the grandmother throws herself in front of it. Anne, seeing the grandmother is unhurt, realizes she can never leave her like her mother, and she finally accepts her. Years later, the children are all grown up and leaving for college. The grandmother tells them she is going back to Facsimile, Limited. She knows her job here is finished.

"A fable? Most assuredly. But who's to say at some distant moment there might not be an assembly line producing a gentle product in the form of a grandmother whose stock in trade is love? Fable, sure - but who's to say?."

•   Grandma: Josephine Hutchinson
•   Anne (age 11): Veronica Cartwright- The Smoking Man’s ex-wife
•   Father: David White- Larry Tate on Bewitched
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Re: LOC 68: Top 50 Twilight Zone Episodes
« Reply #13 on: March 01, 2013, 06:06:13 PM »
41. Profile in Silver- 3/7/1986
(23 points, 1 list of 8, highest ranking: #3 Compound)

Twilight Zone Theme: Time travel is bad
Creepiness Factor: 2 out of 10

Dr. Joseph Fitzgerald, a Harvard University professor of history from the year 2172, has travelled back in time and assumed the identity of an instructor at Harvard from 1961 to 1963. In the privacy of his office, Fitzgerald is visited by Dr. Kate Wang, a colleague from his own time. They discuss his mission, which is to observe the assassination of John F. Kennedy, from whom he is descended.

Fitzgerald is understandably nervous about watching his own ancestor be murdered, especially since he never got to know the man himself; he has met Kennedy only once. Wang reassures Fitzgerald that every field historian has moments of doubt such as this. When she departs for their home time, she says something that Fitzgerald does not quite catch. He decides to get it over with and journeys to Dealey Plaza in Dallas. However, when he glances up to the Texas School Book Depository and sees Lee Harvey Oswald raise a gun to kill Kennedy, Fitzgerald is unable to stand by and watch the killing. He intervenes and saves the president's life, shouting for the president and his entourage to take cover. Oswald fires anyway, but misses, and is later arrested by Dallas police.

A grateful President Kennedy (Andrew Robinson) invites Fitzgerald to stay at the White House. As Kennedy and his entourage return home, the president is notified that Soviet troops have captured West Berlin. Fitzgerald is astonished, and claims that Khrushchev would never do such a thing. Kennedy sadly points out that Khrushchev was assassinated earlier that day.
In his room that night, Fitzgerald frantically consults his time-travel wrist computer, which informs him that his alteration of history has caused massive rips in the fabric of time. The assassination of Khrushchev was not enough to "fix" the damage to the time stream; the computer informs Fitzgerald that all possible outcomes to this timeline will result in total war between the superpowers and mutual annihilation. There is only one way to repair the timeline, the computer intones: "The Kennedy presidency must end, as history originally recorded it."

Meanwhile, the president and his chief Secret Service bodyguard, Ray (Louis Giambalvo), have discovered that Fitzgerald's movie camera is not the standard model it appears to be. Metallurgists cannot open it up or determine what it may be. They summon Fitzgerald, who tells them that the camera is a holographic camera from the future, as he himself is. They are skeptical but are convinced of the truth when the professor demonstrates the camera's use. President Kennedy asks whether Fitzgerald was sent back in time to observe Kennedy's reaction to the Berlin crisis, but the professor replies that he did not know about that. Kennedy is puzzled at this, until he looks again at Fitzgerald's half dollar coin - dated 1964 with Kennedy's face on it (no living American can be depicted on money) - which the Secret Service had recovered after Fitzgerald dropped it on Air Force One, and he quickly deduces the truth: that Fitzgerald came to Dallas to witness an assassination, Kennedy's own.

Kennedy volunteers to do whatever is necessary to repair history. Fitzgerald, overwhelmed by his ancestor's heroism, removes his time travel ring and places it on Kennedy's hand. Kennedy vanishes, and Fitzgerald's computer reports that the president has been transported to the year 2172 - Fitzgerald's home. The professor tells Ray that a few changes need to be made; then, when Dallas and the motorcade are revisited, it is Fitzgerald who appears in the car and is shot and killed.

At Parkland Memorial Hospital in Dallas, the dead body of "President Kennedy" (actually Fitzgerald) is being attended to by a doctor, who is actually Fitzgerald's colleague from the future. Ray, the Secret Service agent, recognizes her ring because it is identical to Fitzgerald's. She tells him that she knew what Fitzgerald's fate would be, saying, "Some of us do our research in the even farther future" and goes on to say, "The last time I saw him I couldn't tell him what I knew. All I could do was repeat a phrase" - the remark that Fitzgerald didn't quite catch - "in Chinese that my husband taught me." Holding Fitzgerald's hand tenderly, she repeats the phrase in Chinese and then says it in English: "Goodbye, old friend... Goodbye." Ray asks her if what they have seen will change history, and she replies that it will not - because it did not. "Even the act of traveling in time is part of history," she says.

At Harvard University in 2172, a man speaks to a classroom full of students, delivering a rousing speech in which he implicitly lauds Fitzgerald's sacrifice and the sacrifices of other honorable men like him. As the camera turns, we see that the speaker, dressed in clothing appropriate to the period, is John F. Kennedy.

•   Dr. Kate Wang: Barbara Baxley – Also in an episode of the original Twilight Zone
•   Dr. Joseph Fitzgerald: Lane Smith- Nathan Bates on V
•   John F. Kennedy: Andrew Robinson
 <a href="http://www.youtube.com/v/ZqFMQ-N2DuQ" target="_blank" class="new_win">http://www.youtube.com/v/ZqFMQ-N2DuQ</a>
« Last Edit: March 03, 2013, 06:34:04 AM by Sicgirl »


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Re: LOC 68: Top 50 Twilight Zone Episodes
« Reply #14 on: March 01, 2013, 06:06:53 PM »
That's it for tonight. I'll post 10 tomorrow and Sunday to speed this up.