The Twilight Zone – Season 2 Disc 1 Review

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The Twilight Zone

The Complete Definitive Collection

Season 2

“You’re traveling through another dimension, a dimension not only of sight and sound but of mind; a journey into a wondrous land whose boundaries are that of imagination. That’s the signpost up ahead – your next stop, the Twilight Zone.”

Disc 1

#37King Nine Will Not Return

Season 2 Episode 1

Original Air Date: September 20, 1960

Writer: Rod Serling

Guest Star: Robert Cummings

Synopsis: James Embry awakes in the desert near a crashed World War II fighter plane. It’s his plane, but his crew has vanished. Also, he sees jets flying overhead.

Impressions: Wow. I’ve never seen this episode before, and it was a great way to start this season. It’s not horror. It’s not science fiction. It has elements of both in a way. A psychological thriller. This episode reminds me of a lot of the first episode of the first season. It’s the same kind of thing almost, with a better ending. It has a more surprising twist.

Rating: 5/5

 

#38The Man in the Bottle

Season 2 Episode 2

Original Air Date: October 7, 1960

Writer: Rod Serling

Guest Stars: Luther Adler, Vivi Janiss (2nd of 2 appearances), Joseph Ruskin

Synopsis: Antique and curio shop owners Arthur and Edna Castle are losing the business game. By chance, a bottle brought in contains a genie. The genie will grant four wishes, but strongly advises they be careful what you wish for.

Impressions: Another moral story. Be careful what you wish for. I can’t blame Rod Serling this time, I didn’t think the moral interfered with what could have been a good story. The story wasn’t any good. Another fantasy tale. Perhaps if it contained some other setting, or circumstances, or wishes, I would have enjoyed it more.

Rating: 2/5

 

#39Nervous Man in a Four Dollar Room

Season 2 Episode 3

Original Air Date: October 14, 1960

Writer: Rod Serling

Guest Stars: Joe Mantell (1st of 2 appearances), William D. Gordon (1st of 2 appearances)

Synopsis: Small time criminal Jackie Rhoades is ordered to commit a murder he doesn’t want to. While waiting for the appointed time, he sees himself in the mirror, the man he could have been.

Impressions: Another fantasy tale with a moral lesson. Another episode that might read better, or hear as a radio drama than watch. There isn’t a lot going on in this one, just a guy in a room. A boring episode.

Rating: 1/5

 

#40A Thing About Machines

Season 2 Episode 4

Original Air Date: October 28, 1960

Writer: Rod Serling

Guest Stars: Richard Haydn, Barbara Stuart, Barney Phillips (2nd of 4 appearances)

Synopsis: Bartlett Finchley hates any and all forms of machinery. He destroys them when angered. He soon learns the machines in his home feel the same way about him.

Impressions: A fantasy tale without a moral. Not the best episode, but not the worst either. This was better than the previous two, which isn’t saying much.

Rating: 2.5/5

 

#41The Howling Man

Season 2 Episode 5

Original Air Date: November 4, 1960

Writer: Charles Beaumont

Guest Stars: John Carradine, H.M. Wynant, Robin Hughes

Synopsis: David Ellington is on a walking trip of Europe. He gets lost during a heavy storm and arrives at a monastery. He hears a constant howling and meets a man locked in a cell. The head brother, Jerome, tells Ellington the man in the cell is no man at all, but something much worse.

Impressions: Business, as they say, has picked up. This is one of, if not my most favorite episodes. The short story is brilliant as well. This tale of fantasy incorporates elements of horror. The use of the music score and camera angles aid in creating the haunting, mysterious atmosphere.

Rating: 5/5

 

#42Eye of the Beholder aka Private World of Darkness

Season 2 Episode 6

Original Air Date: November 11, 1960

Writer: Rod Serling

Guest Stars: Maxine Stuart, William D. Gordon (2nd of 2 appearances), Edson Stroll (1st of 2 appearances), Donna Douglas (1st of 2 appearances)

Synopsis: Janet Tyler is an outcast due to her appearance. She awaits the results of her final attempt to live a normal life, or be banished to a village of others who suffer from the same ailment.

Impressions: This is one of the most well-known Twilight Zone episodes. Rod Serling had a moral message, and this time it doesn’t ruin anything. This story, this episode, is an exception to the rule. A tale of fantasy that draws inspiration from Nazi Germany and Adolph Hitler. I can’t wait for more as we end this disc on high note.

Rating: 5/5

Seven discs down, 21 more to go. What did we get? One of my all-time favorite episodes, one of the most well-known episodes, and a really good episode I’d never seen before. We also had three below average episodes. This is a disc split below average, and top rated episodes. I can’t put over The Howling Man enough. It’s one I know will make the “Best of Season 2” list, and “Best Overall” list. This disc ended on a high note with two top rated, well-written episodes. I can’t wait to start on the next disc. Of these seven episodes, which one is your favorite?

 Copyright © Drew Martin 2015

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