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 Twilight Zone Of The Week - Where Is Everybody?

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The Dadalanche
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PostSubject: Twilight Zone Of The Week - Where Is Everybody?   Thu Oct 02, 2014 6:18 pm

The Twilight Zone - Season 1,
Episode 1 - "Where Is Everybody?"





First broadcast on October 2, 1959.

Prior to this episode, Rod Serling had written an episode called "The Happy Place" as the pilot for his new series. It was rejected, because the story — centered on a society where people were executed when they turned 60 due to their inability to contribute to society — was considered too depressing by network executives. (This idea was presented in Anthony Trollope's 1882 novel The Fixed Period, which envisaged a College where men retired at 67 and after a contemplative period of a year were 'peacefully extinguished' by chloroform. It was also endorsed in a 1905 speech by the famous physician William Osler. It was then used, slightly modified, in the 1967 novel Logan's Run and adaptations of the novel as well as a 1991 episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation, "Half a Life".)

The episode originally featured narration by announcer Westbrook Van Voorhis. As Voorhis was unavailable for subsequent episodes, however, narration for both the episode and the introduction was re-recorded for consistency by Serling himself; his presence later became a hallmark of the series. The Twilight Zone was the sixth dimension in the original narration but was changed to the fifth dimension in the re-recording. Together with the re-recording the series logo was also changed to the familiar typeface.

Several years later, Serling adapted this and other episodes into short stories for a book, Stories From the Twilight Zone. Reportedly dissatisfied with the lack of science fiction content, he added an additional twist to the end by having Mike Ferris discover a movie ticket in his pocket after being carried away on the stretcher. A variation on this twist was later used in "King Nine Will Not Return".

The haunting score composed by Bernard Herrmann for this episode would be reused for several episodes of the series, most notably "The After Hours" and "The Last Flight". Several record albums of original soundtrack music from the series were released, some having alternate theme music for the series that was never used. One of the alternate themes is a cue from the episode.

This was the only Twilight Zone episode filmed at Universal Studios, the rest of the entire series was filmed at Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer. The centerpiece of the episode is the Courthouse Square set, most well known for being used as the town square of "Hill Valley" in the Back to the Future series of films over 25 years later.

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PostSubject: Re: Twilight Zone Of The Week - Where Is Everybody?   Thu Oct 02, 2014 6:24 pm

According to a statement by Rod Serling while discussing this episode during a 1975 lecture at Sherwood Oaks College, Earl Holliman was running a temperature of over 100 degrees while this episode was being filmed.

Although Buck Houghton is listed as this program's producer, this was actually the pilot show for Twilight Zone (1959), and in that stage William Self was the producer; it was Self's job to shop the show around to network executives. It's possible that without him, the show might never have gotten off the ground. Houghton is credited as producer of the program as ultimately shown on TV because by then Self was no longer connected with the series.

Near the beginning Ferris knocks over an alarm clock. The close-up of the clock on the floor shows a shattered crystal and the time of 6:15. At the end when he is compulsively tapping the clock in the isolation both, the crystal is also shattered and the time on it is 6:15.

In his audio commentary, Earl Holliman (Mike Ferris) said that he had suggested to Rod Serling that he tear a page out of the phone book and it would fall out of his pocket at the end, but Rod Serling advised that CBS wanted the program to be more of a reality.

Tony Curtis was offered the role of Mike Ferris, but he wanted too much money.

Earl Holliman was 30-years-old when this show aired. He is the only actor who appeared from the first season who was still alive 50 years after the show was canceled.

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