Monthly Archives: April 2014

“You’re Traveling Through Another Dimension …”

Everyone knows the theme music to The Twilight Zone. So well, in fact, that it’s a kind of shorthand “name” for the series itself at times. An odd thing will happen, and someone will go, “De do, de do, de do, de do …”

TwilightZoneVortex

Escher moment: Does it funnel IN … or OUT?

But while TZ’s musical signature lasted nearly the entire length of the series, the opening credits changed fairly often. The visual elements and Serling’s narration shifted almost from week to week at times, at least during the first three seasons.

Tinkering aside, though, The Twilight Zone featured three main opening credits: the clouds-landscape-starfield montage of Season 1 (the only one with different theme music), the swirling vortex of Seasons 2 and 3, and the shattering window-eyeball-ticking clock images of Seasons 4 and 5.

The question is, which one is the best? Here’s your chance to sound off. Play the videos below in case you need to refresh your memory, and vote. (Note from Anthony: Non-voters risk a trip to the cornfield!) Read the rest of this entry

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“Last Night” of a Legend: Mickey Rooney and Rod Serling

“I want to be big!” thunders Michael Grady in Rod Serling’s “The Last Night of a Jockey.”

An ironic line, as it turns out. Grady, a horse jockey who’s been blackballed for a variety of racing infractions, is a small man who, by the episode’s end, gets his wish in the most literal way. Hello, Twilight Zone.

mickeyrooney

And goodbye, Mickey Rooney, the man who brought Grady to raw, sputtering life in a high-octane performance that few other actors would even attempt. He’d become big long before there was a Twilight Zone. Only five feet, two inches tall, Rooney stood considerably higher in the pantheon of golden-era film stars.

A legend? Let’s put it this way: News of Rooney’s death at 93 on April 6, 2014, prompted more than one shocked fan on Twitter to note that it somehow felt too soon. Read the rest of this entry