Monthly Archives: February 2016

Finding Faith in the Fifth Dimension

Religious content in The Twilight Zone? The sci-fi fantasy show about time travel, homicidal dolls and aliens with hostile intent? The idea may seem absurd at first.

HMBrotherChristopherus

“The Howling Man”

Yet the deeper one looks for religious messages — and Lent certainly seems like a good time to do it — the more one finds them popping up, both directly and indirectly. (Spoilers ahead, casual Zone viewers.)

For starters, consider how often we see the Devil or one of his emissaries. In “Printer’s Devil”, for example, Burgess Meredith plays a man who helps a small-town publisher on the brink of suicide achieve financial success by ferreting out scandal stories that smash the competition. He then unfurls a contract stating that only by agreeing to relinquish his soul can the publisher cement this arrangement. Read the rest of this entry

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Serling’s Re-Zoning Efforts: “To Serve Man”

Remember how the Kanamits in “To Serve Man” looked? Short, fat and hairy, with pig-like faces. Three fingers on each hand. Walking around in green shorts. Hard to forget that image.

Wait, what?

To Serve Man1

If you’re confused, it’s because you’re picturing the way the Kanamits looked in one of the most famous episodes of The Twilight Zone. The description I just gave was how they looked in the short story that Rod Serling based his script on.

My first two “Re-Zoning” posts showed how freely Serling would adapt his scripts from the source material. He wasn’t one to simply take the story as is and put it in script form. Oh, no. Turning an intriguing story into a true Twilight Zone often required quite a few changes. Read the rest of this entry