|The Twilight Zone|
Title screen from The Twilight Zone.
|Company||CBS, UPN (2nd revival only)|
|Run dates||Original series (1959-1964)|
First revival (1985-1989)
Second revival (2002-2003)
|Genres||fantasy, SF, horror|
|Country of origin||USA|
The Twilight Zone is an American television anthology series created by Rod Serling. It originally appeared on CBS from 2 October 1959 to 19 June 1964. Each episode of the series is a mixture of self-contained fantasy, science fiction, suspense, or horror, often concluding with a macabre or unexpected twist. A popular and critical success, it introduced many Americans to serious science fiction and abstract ideas.
Rod Serling served as executive producer and head writer, penning 92 of the show's 156 episodes. He was also the show's host, delivering on-or-off-screen monologues at the beginning and end of each episode. During the first season, except for the season's final episode, Serling's narrations were off-camera voiceovers; he only appeared on-camera at the end of each show to promote the next episode. Serling's opening and closing narrations usually summarized the episode's events in a cryptic, dramatized manner, thus demonstrating how the episode's main character had "entered the Twilight Zone".
- There is a fifth dimension, beyond that which is known to man. It is a dimension as vast as space and as timeless as infinity. It is the middle ground between light and shadow, between science and superstition, and it lies between the pit of man's fears and the summit of his knowledge. This is the dimension of imagination. It is an area which we call the Twilight Zone.
The show does not present the eponymous "twilight zone" as being a tangible plane, but rather a metaphor for the strange circumstances befalling the protagonists. In fact, the term "twilight zone" predates the television program, and originally meant simply a "gray area" or area of uncertainty. Rod Serling himself chose the title of the series, and said that only after the series aired did he discover that "twilight zone" was also a term applied by the US Air Force to the terminator, the border between night and day on a planetary body. In addition, intelligence analysts in the early Cold War labeled a country a "twilight zone" if there was no definite American policy on whether to intervene militarily to defend it.
The success of the original series twice led to revivals: a cult hit series ran on CBS from 27 September 1985 to 15 April 1989; and a short-lived UPN series ran from 18 September to 21 May 2003.
- Adapted from the Wikipedia article on The Twilight Zone.