Author Topic: LOC 68: Top 50 Twilight Zone Episodes  (Read 26288 times)

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Johnny Unusual

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Re: LOC 68: Top 50 Twilight Zone Episodes
« Reply #75 on: March 07, 2013, 07:42:04 PM »
That raises the question:
Which episode has had the better parody: It's a Good Life or Terror at 20,000 Feet?


Offline Compound

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Re: LOC 68: Top 50 Twilight Zone Episodes
« Reply #76 on: March 07, 2013, 07:47:50 PM »
Oh and one thing about it's a Good Life. It's pretty chilling and it ranked high on my list. But I always wondered why anyone would hate electricity. What, did he pull a Booji Boy and stick a fork in the toaster one day? And singing, why singing... especially when he's okay with annoying piano playing? Seems like the kids got some weird dislikes.

Hmm, I wonder if the story was set today, would he hate microwavable Croissants too? ;)

I think it's less of a "didn't like" and more of a "didn't know." If Anthony grabbed, say, everything in a five mile radius of the house when he took them elsewhere, it's unlikely that there would be a power generator in that radius. Without a power plant, no power. And even with a generator, there'd be no new sources of fuel in the area so it'd be temporary at best. So the TV only works when he wills it to work. If I recall the episode, the adults were discussing how rare certain items were becoming because of the situation, but it was a good thing they were running out of coffee and alcohol.

The most recent TZ series did a sequel to this episode, BTW.


Offline Tripe

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Re: LOC 68: Top 50 Twilight Zone Episodes
« Reply #77 on: March 07, 2013, 08:02:37 PM »
They did,  was the daughter played by Mumy's own daughter, or am I remembering that wrong.


Johnny Unusual

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Re: LOC 68: Top 50 Twilight Zone Episodes
« Reply #78 on: March 07, 2013, 08:20:21 PM »
The other thing is that outlawing singing... in North Korea laughter is illegal (or at least based on the experiences of Guy Delisle) and they only play the government's music on the radio (much like how only Anthony "makes TV" or decides what music gets played.  I mean, kids have a pretty fucked up way how to do things (and yes, I mean that the leaders of North Korea were all grown infants).  But the other thing is that despite being almost all powerful, Anthony does have some weaknesses and I bet music can block out some thoughts that Anthony wants to read, if that little monster has any practical reasons for his cruelty.

In a way though, I do pity Anthony.  Either he's never going to grow or he is and will realize how awful he is... if he's not a sociopath (at that age it's hard to tell).


jasimon1

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Re: LOC 68: Top 50 Twilight Zone Episodes
« Reply #79 on: March 07, 2013, 09:03:25 PM »
5.  The Obsolete Man- 6/2/61
(90 points, 5 lists of 8, highest ranking: #1 Tyrant and Imrahil)

Twilight Zone Theme: The future kinda sucks
Creepiness Factor: 6 out of 10

"You walk into this room at your own risk, because it leads to the future, not a future that will be but one that might be. This is not a new world, it is simply an extension of what began in the old one. It has patterned itself after every dictator who has ever planted the ripping imprint of a boot on the pages of history since the beginning of time. It has refinements , technological advancements, and a more sophisticated approach to the destruction of human freedom. But like every one of the superstates that preceded it, it has one iron rule: logic is an enemy and truth is a menace... This is Romney Wordsworth, in his last forty-eight hours on Earth. He's a citizen of the State but will soon have to be eliminated, because he's built out of flesh and because he has a mind. Mr. Romney Wordsworth, who will draw his last breaths in the Twilight Zone."

In a future society, all books and religion have been banned. Romney Wordsworth is a God-fearing librarian who has been judged obsolete by a chancellor of the State. He is granted three requests: only his assassin will know his method of death, that he die at midnight the next day, and that he have an audience. Forty-five minutes before his scheduled death, he invites the Chancellor to his room. He then informs the Chancellor that he has chosen to be killed by a bomb set to explode at midnight, he then locks the Chancellor in his room. A TV camera is broadcasting all that happens - and Wordsworth will prove who's will is stronger, his or the State's. The Chancellor is calm at first, but as the minutes tick by he begins to panic. He finally cries out, "In the name of God, let me out!" Wordsworth hands him the key, and the Chancellor runs from the room just as it explodes. When the Chancellor returns to his court, he finds he has been judged obsolete and replaced. Loyal members of the State surround him and tear him to pieces.

"The Chancellor - the late Chancellor - was only partly correct. He was obsolete. But so was the State, the entity he worshipped. Any state, any entity, any ideology that fails to recognize the worth, the dignity, the rights of man, that state is obsolete. A case to be filed under 'M' for mankind... in the Twilight Zone."

Cast:
•   Romney Wordsworth: Burgess Meredith
•   Chancellor: Fritz Weaver
•   Subaltern: Joseph Elic
•   Guard: Harry Fleer


jasimon1

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Re: LOC 68: Top 50 Twilight Zone Episodes
« Reply #80 on: March 07, 2013, 09:03:54 PM »
4.  Nick of Time- 11/18/60
(90 points, 6 lists of 8, highest ranking: #1 Pak)

Twilight Zone Theme: Magical objects
Creepiness Factor: 9 out of 10

"The hand belongs to Mr. Don S. Carter, male member of a honeymoon team en route across the Ohio countryside to New York City. In one moment, they will be subjected to a gift most humans never receive in a lifetime. For one penny, they will be able to look into the future. The time is now, the place is a little diner in Ridgeview, Ohio, and what this young couple doesn't realize is that this town happens to lie on the outskirts of the Twilight Zone."

While waiting for their car to be repaired, Don and Pat grab a quick meal at a local diner. A table top fortune-telling machine catches Don's eye. Although the answers are extremely general, Don soon believes the machine has accurately predicted two events - his promotion, and a near-accident he and Pat have while crossing the street. Don panics and begins feeding pennies into the machine. Pat convinces him that they must make their own future, without the machine. Don comes to his senses, and the couple leaves. Soon after they leave, another couple hurry into the diner and begin putting pennies in the machine. They ask when they might be allowed to leave town.

"Counterbalance in the little town of Ridgeview, Ohio. Two people permanently enslaved by the tyranny of fear and superstition, facing the future with a kind of helpless dread. Two others facing the future with confidence - having escaped one of the darker places in the Twilight Zone."

Cast:
•   Don Carter: William Shatner
•   Pat Carter: Patricia Breslin
•   Counter Man: Guy Wilkerson


jasimon1

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Re: LOC 68: Top 50 Twilight Zone Episodes
« Reply #81 on: March 07, 2013, 09:04:20 PM »
3.  The Midnight Sun- 11/17/61
(99 points, 7 lists of 8, highest ranking: #4 Tyrant)

Twilight Zone Theme: End of the world
Creepiness Factor: 10 out of 10

"The word that Mrs. Bronson is unable to put into the hot, still, sodden air is 'doomed,' because the people you've just seen have been handed a death sentence. One month ago, the Earth suddenly changed its elliptical orbit and in doing so began to follow a path which gradually, moment by moment, day by day, took it closer to the sun. And all of man's little devices to stir up the air are now no longer luxuries - they happen to be pitiful and panicky keys to survival. The time is five minutes to twelve, midnight. There is no more darkness. the place is New York City and this is the eve of the end, because even at midnight it's high noon, the hottest day in history, and you're about to spend it in the Twilight Zone."

Norma and Mrs. Bronson remain in their apartments, even after most people have left town. A man breaks into Norma's apartment and drinks the last of her water. He then apologizes and leaves. Later, as the temperature increases, Mrs. Bronson dies. The paintings melt and a thermometer bursts. Norma screams and collapses. When she awakens it's dark and snowing. She was just dreaming - The Earth is actually heading away from the sun.

"The poles of fear, the extremes of how the Earth might conceivably be doomed. Minor exercise in the care and feeding of a nightmare, respectfully submitted by all thermometer-watchers in the Twilight Zone."

Cast:
•   Norma: Lois Nettleton
•   Mrs. Bronson: Betty Garde
•   Intruder: Tom Reese


jasimon1

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Re: LOC 68: Top 50 Twilight Zone Episodes
« Reply #82 on: March 07, 2013, 09:04:47 PM »
2.  The Monsters Are Due on Maple Street- 3/4/60
(108 points, 7 lists of 8, highest ranking: #2 Pak)

Twilight Zone Theme: Aliens toying with us
Creepiness Factor: 9 out of 10

"Maple Street, U.S.A. Late summer. A tree-lined little world of front porch gliders, barbecues, the laughter of children, and the bell of an ice-cream vendor. At the sound of the roar and the flash of light, it will be precisely 6:43pm on Maple Street. [Narration interrupted by the effects described above, as well as character action and dialogue.] This is Maple Street on a late Saturday afternoon. Maple Street, in the last calm and reflective moment before the monsters came."

After what is believed to be a meteor flies overhead, Maple Street experiences a total power failure. Pete Van Horn leaves to find what is going on. Tommy, a reader of sci-fi, says human- looking aliens have infiltrated Maple Street. No one takes this seriously until Mr. Goodman's car cranks for a few seconds. Suspicion falls on him, made stronger by a neighbor's memory of seeing him looking up at the stars at night. Everyone begins to panic as the evening approaches. When a mysterious figure walks towards them in the dark, Charlie Farnsworth takes a neighbor's rifle and fires. The mysterious figure turns out to be the returning Pete Van Horn. Charlie is then accused of being the alien, then Tommy, then total madness breaks out. As various house lights flash on and off, rioting breaks out. Two nearby aliens watch these events. One tells the other that by manipulating electricity, it is easy to turn neighbor against neighbor. Maple Street is only the beginning.

"The tools of conquest do not necessarily come with bombs and explosions and fallout. There are weapons that are simply thoughts, attitudes, prejudices - to be found only in the minds of men. For the record, prejudices can kill and suspicion can destroy, and a thoughtless, frightened search for a scapegoat has a fallout all its own - for the children, and the children yet unborn. And the pity of it is that these things cannot be confined to the Twilight Zone."


Cast:
•   Steve Brand: Claude Akins
•   Charlie: Jack Weston
•   Mr. Goodman: Barry Atwater


jasimon1

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Re: LOC 68: Top 50 Twilight Zone Episodes
« Reply #83 on: March 07, 2013, 09:05:26 PM »
1.  To Serve Man- 3/2/62
(143 points, 7 lists of 8, highest ranking: #1 Compound)

Twilight Zone Theme: Aliens toying with us
Creepiness Factor: 10 out of 10

"Respectfully submitted for your approval - a Kanamit. Height: a little over nine feet. Weight: in the neighborhood of three hundred and fifty pounds. Origin: unknown. Motives? Therein hangs the tale, for in just a moment we're going to ask you to shake hands, figuratively, with a Christopher Columbus from another galaxy and another time. This is the Twilight Zone."

The Kanamits arrive on Earth, and immediately start helping man. They appear totally trustworthy and full of goodwill. This idea is backed up when they leave a book titled "To Serve Man" at the U.N. Michael Chambers, a decoding expert, along with thousands of other people book passage to the Kanamit's home panet. Meanwhile, Michael's assistant Pat is trying to decode the book left by the Kanamits. As Michael is boarding the Kanamit spacecraft, Pat runs up and tells Michael she has finished translating the book - it's a cookbook! Michael tries to escape, but is forced back inside by a Kanamit, and the craft leaves.

"The recollections of one Michael Chambers, with appropriate flashbacks and soliloquy. Or more simply stated, the evolution of a man, the cycle of going from dust to dessert, the metamorphosis from being the ruler of a planet to an ingredient in someone's soup. It's tonight's bill of fare on the Twilight Zone."


Cast:
•   Chambers: Lloyd Bochner
•   Kanamit: Richard Kiel
•   Voice of Kanamit: Joseph Ruskin
•   Pat: Susan Cummings


Johnny Unusual

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Re: LOC 68: Top 50 Twilight Zone Episodes
« Reply #84 on: March 07, 2013, 09:19:07 PM »
4.  Nick of Time- 11/18/60
(90 points, 6 lists of 8, highest ranking: #1 Pak)


This is a pretty amazing episode that no one really talks about.  Maybe because it's not so out there and really could be an insane series of coincidences.  I love the twist at the end, but I think the story even works without it.  A great story of learning to live without superstition... even if it might be true.  It was also cool because this is one of those great episodes I saw without knowing the twist.  Some of Shatner's best work.

3.  The Midnight Sun- 11/17/61
(99 points, 7 lists of 8, highest ranking: #4 Tyrant)

Twilight Zone Theme: End of the world
Creepiness Factor: 10 out of 10


I don't think it was that creepy, but really, really good.

2.  The Monsters Are Due on Maple Street- 3/4/60
(108 points, 7 lists of 8, highest ranking: #2 Pak)

This is the best episode to point to in regards to what the show is all about.  Humanist but in a way that also points to the more insidious parts of humanity.  Political but not specific to anything in the real world (which is part of the reason it is so much better than "the Shelter").  A great twist and a sense of weirdness and dread, like the world's gone mad.

1.  To Serve Man- 3/2/62
(143 points, 7 lists of 8, highest ranking: #1 Compound)

Eh... saw it for the first time recently.  It made my list, but I only thought it was good.  Of course, maybe if I didn't know the ending the utopia build up would have more of an impact.  Really the twist feels more like a punchline.  Not a bad thing, but not mind blowing.  Still, I don't mind it being in the top 10.  I don't think it should have one, but I kind of know why... It's one of the ones everyone remembers and it certainly is memorable.


MightyJack

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Re: LOC 68: Top 50 Twilight Zone Episodes
« Reply #85 on: March 07, 2013, 09:31:45 PM »
1.  To Serve Man- 3/2/62
(143 points, 7 lists of 8, highest ranking: #1 Compound)

Twilight Zone Theme: Aliens toying with us
Creepiness Factor: 10 out of 10

Hell of a punchline, but I wasn't as impressed with the setup. I didn't care for the way they opened the show at the end and told the tale via narration. Speaking for myself, I would have rather had it played out straight... let it unfold and build without prior knowledge that the aliens are up to no good. I know this being the TZ that something will happen, but I'd rather have waited to see if it was the humans or the aliens who caused the twist.

So, not my favorite ep at #1 -- but still had a lot of fun reading the thread each day and watching this wonderful series. Thanks sicgirl for hosting


Oh and one thing about it's a Good Life. It's pretty chilling and it ranked high on my list. But I always wondered why anyone would hate electricity. What, did he pull a Booji Boy and stick a fork in the toaster one day? And singing, why singing... especially when he's okay with annoying piano playing? Seems like the kids got some weird dislikes.

Hmm, I wonder if the story was set today, would he hate microwavable Croissants too? ;)

I think it's less of a "didn't like" and more of a "didn't know."

No, Rod clearly says that he got rid of the electricity and the automobiles and other machines, because they displeased him. It wasn't that he didn't know, but that they upset him for some reason.

Besides, I was having a bit of laugh when I wrote that. I wasn't really looking for an analysis.  ;) 


Johnny Unusual

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Re: LOC 68: Top 50 Twilight Zone Episodes
« Reply #86 on: March 07, 2013, 10:27:10 PM »
BTW, great job sicgirl.  I might have gotten discouraged with so few lists but this turned out to be a great list nonetheless and you did a great job.  Was this your first time?  You should host more often.


Offline MartyS (Gromit)

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Re: LOC 68: Top 50 Twilight Zone Episodes
« Reply #87 on: March 08, 2013, 12:22:35 AM »
3 in the top 20 I don't think I've seen, so I'll have to check them out soon.


MightyJack

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Re: LOC 68: Top 50 Twilight Zone Episodes
« Reply #88 on: March 08, 2013, 01:16:41 AM »
Well, might as well post my list. Since most of my 25 made it, I'll just highlight the ones that didn't.

The Twilight Zone 25 – Original series only ()=season
1.   The After Hours (1)
2.   Living Doll (5)
3.   The Invaders (2)
4.   A Stop at Willoughby (1)
5.   It's A Good Life (3)
6.   Eye of the Beholder (2)
7.   Time Enough At Last (1)
8.   The Midnight Sun (3)
9.   Two (3)
10.   Will the Real Martian Please Stand Up (2)
11.   Nightmare at 20,000 Feet (5)
12.   Little Girl Lost (3)
13.   Mirror Image (1)
14.   Number 12 Looks Just Like You (5)
15.   Person or Persons Unknown (3) – There are similar themed eps, but I liked this version best. Actor Richard Long did nice work in this one playing a guy who wakes up to find his identity erased from existence.
16.   Five Characters in Search of an Exit (3)
17.   The Rip Van Winkle Caper (2) – Gold fever strikes a group of thieves who have been in suspended animation for 100 years. Another well acted piece.
18.   The Dummy (3) – Cliff Robertson did a great job in this creepy episode about a dummy come to life.
19.   Night Call (5) – Old lady receives eerie phone calls. This was a sharply executed piece from the director of "Cat People" and "Out of the Past".  Story by the great Richard Matheson. Very tense and chilling. I loved the scene when they visit the graveyard.
20.   The Lonely (1)
21.   The Monsters Are Due on Maple Street (1)
22.   Nick of Time (2)
23.   Nothing in the Dark (3)
24.   Stopover in a Quiet Town (5)
25.   The Howling Man (2)

Season Breakdowns
Season 1= 6 episodes
Season 2= 6 episodes
Season 3= 8 episodes
Season 4= 0 episodes
Season 5= 5 episodes

A few episodes I liked that didn't make the LOC or just missed my top 25...
Nightmare as a Child (I wish I could have gotten this on my 25)
On Thursday We Leave For Home
A Hundred Yards Over the Rim
Shadow Play
Printer's Devil
Walking Distance
Long Live Walter Jameson
The Long Morrow
I Shot an Arrow Into the Air
When The Sky Opened
The Odyssey of Flight 33
Third From the Sun
The Valley of the Shadow
Miniature
Jess-Belle
The Silence
The Trade-Ins


Once again, thanks for hosting sicgirl. I had a blast with this.
« Last Edit: March 08, 2013, 01:30:19 AM by George Harrison »


Johnny Unusual

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Re: LOC 68: Top 50 Twilight Zone Episodes
« Reply #89 on: March 08, 2013, 01:44:17 AM »
1. The After Hours
2. It's a Good Life
3. The Monsters Are Due on Maple Street
4. Nick of Time
5. Nightmare at 20,000 Feet
6. Button, Button
7. Four O'Clock - It's pretty ludicrous and the twist is sort of obvious, but it really does work.  I love how the main character doesn't realize the twist nor what has happened to him.  Just like real life.
8. The Midnight Sun
9. The Little People
10. Where is Everybody?
11. Death's Head Revisited
12. To Serve Man
13. To See the Invisible Man
14. The Grave
15. The Shelter - Did this one make it?  I forgot.
16. Two - This might have made it higher if it was fresher in my mind
17. A Most Unusual Camera - This has the best worst ending of any episode.
18. The Gift - Eh... as far as Christ analogies go, it's alright.
19. The Jungle - from her on in, I only kind of remember the episodes
20. Escape Clause
21. Examination Day
22. Wish Bank
23. In His Image
24. A Penny For Your Thoughts
25. The Mind and the Matter

BTW, there are a lot of classics I haven't seen if you are noting any glaring omissions.  TZ doesn't air much in Canada in the last 20 years or so.