“Do You Know Why There’s Night All Around Us?”
No sides. Just shock and sadness. It’s time to stop and reflect.
This quote from Rev. Anderson in Rod Serling’s sobering Season 5 episode, “I Am The Night — Color Me Black”, keeps echoing in my mind:
In all this darkness, is there anybody who can make out the truth? He hated and he killed and now he dies. And you hated, you killed, and now there’s not one of you, not one of you, who isn’t doomed.
Do you know why it’s dark? Do you know why there’s night all around us? Do you know what the blackness is? It’s the hate he felt, the hate you felt, the hate all of us feel, and there’s too much of it. There’s just too much.
And so we had to vomit it out. And now it’s coming up all around us and choking us. So much hate. So much miserable hate.
Will it keep getting darker? That’s up to each and every one of us.
As Serling says in his closing narration: “A sickness known as hate. Not a virus, not a microbe, not a germ — but a sickness nonetheless, highly contagious, deadly in its effects. Don’t look for it in the Twilight Zone — look for it in a mirror. Look for it before the light goes out altogether.”
Hate is easy. Love is hard. But it’s the only thing that will keep the darkness from growing — and consuming us all.
Posted on 07/08/2016, in Twilight Zone and tagged I Am The Night -- Color Me Black, Rod Serling, Twilight Zone. Bookmark the permalink. 7 Comments.
Such a meaningful and heart wrenching subject matter. I cannot imagine not loving others, caring about their lives, especially children. Why is hate and bigotry still part of our social climate? :(
As a child, not kidding, my Dad told us how he had to work to help his Mom to pay rent. So, he walked or hitchhiked at age 11 from Cincy to Covington, since KY didn’t have child labor laws. With his father disabled by PTSD and suffering from gran mal seizures, (a resident at Veteran’s Home), Dad did what he had to. A truck driver taking him up the hill overlooking the city, told him he needed to quit working so late, study hard and get scholarship to U of Cincy. (“To get out of the ghetto you live in.”)
My Dad got into engineering work study program and we heard this often.
Mom and Dad felt we were blessed, “Just look in the mirror and realize how much easier you have it.” Isn’t this comment eerily reminiscent of this episodes mirror reference? Different meaning but same reflection metaphor on life.
As a HS teacher, Mom chose students of a variety of ethnic backgrounds to help financially support. We met and went to weddings as only white people present. I have photos of such joys; along with memories of our volunteering work at Head Start (out of an African American downtown church) with children who came for Mom’s breakfast and pre-K lessons. Live the way you believe. My parents made us get early jobs. We would negotiate 50/50 deals for financial help for bikes, musical instruments and other things our friends got for free. Why mention how I lived and learned? Because so many children are not learning these lessons anymore. I am proud to say my grown children are raising my grandkids with open and giving hearts, Paul.
How we’re raised undoubtedly makes a huge difference. I saw a meme today that showed three little kids hugging — one white, two black — and it said, “No one is born racist.” But we need good parents and grandparents to keep us on the right path. Good comment — thanks!
It’s so sad that opportunities to highlight this episode keep coming. Paul. I think Rod Seling would have rather this one episode not have a timeless quality. Thanks for posting this today.
I couldn’t agree more, Dan. Just hoping to break the cycle.
Most viewers ridicule this episode for being pompous and preachy. Well, IT IS! To worthwhile purpose! Who else was attempting this sort of thing in the early ’60s? Who would dare attempt it now, when blind, unreasoning hate is more the order of the day than ever? They may come for us all sooner or later, and I applaud this episode for its courage and compassion. Serling’s closing narration never fails to chill me: “Don’t Look For it in The Twilight Zone. Look for it in the mirror.” You can hear the sneer of anger in his voice. That was a man. Perhaps that’s why THE SEASON TO BE WARY happened later. Where else could he go? What’s left for the decent soul knee-deep in the darkness and bile we all make?
Very true, Dale. He was a like a warning bell in a sea of deep fog, always trying to wake us.
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