How Well Do You Remember These Classic Episodes of “The Twilight Zone”?


By: William J. Wright

7 Min Quiz

Image: CBS

About This Quiz

"It is the middle ground between light and shadow ..." With those words, audiences were introduced to a revolution in television storytelling that would change the face of the medium forever. Premiering on October 2, 1959, "The Twilight Zone" brought serious science fiction and fantasy, genres that had long been considered kiddie fodder, to the masses. The brainchild of an already acclaimed 34-year-old writer and decorated World War II veteran named Rod Serling, "The Twilight Zone" invited viewers into the "middle ground between shadow and substance," transforming the much-maligned television set into a doorway to the fifth dimension.

Serling, who would lend his unmistakable voice and presence to "The Twilight Zone" as host and narrator, would write the majority of the episodes himself; the rest he would turn over to a handpicked stable of science fiction greats including George Clayton Johnson, Richard Matheson, Charles Beaumont and the legendary Ray Bradbury. Socially aware and committed to elevating the medium of television to the level of film and theater, Serling and company exploited the genres of the fantastic to tell stories straight, dramatic TV wouldn't touch.

Now, submitted for your approval, a quiz to scale the summit of your television knowledge — a test, if you will, designed to both frighten and delight. That's the signpost up ahead. Next stop, the ultimate "Twilight Zone" quiz.

Which future "Star Trek" cast member takes a terrifying plane ride in the classic 1963 episode "Nightmare at 20,000 Feet"?

None other than Captain Kirk himself, William Shatner, stars in one of "The Twilight Zone's" most iconic episodes, "Nightmare at 20,000 Feet." Shatner plays airline passenger Robert Wilson, a man recovering from a nervous breakdown, who is the sole witness to a plane-destroying monster.


Which actress from a popular '60s TV comedy plays the "disfigured" patient 307 in the classic episode "Eye of the Beholder"?

In "Eye of the Beholder," Donna Douglas (Ellie May of "The Beverly Hillbillies") stars as a deformed woman facing surgery to "correct" her appearance. However, when her bandages are removed, she's revealed as beautiful (by our standards) woman living in a world where grotesque features are the norm.


What object does Brother Jerome use to hold the Devil captive in the episode "The Howling Man"?

In "The Howling Man," based on a story by Charles Beaumont, John Carradine plays Brother Jerome, a member of a monastic order which has captured and imprisoned the Devil himself. Old Scratch's cell door is held closed with a shepherd's crook known as the Staff of Truth.


In the 1960 Christmas episode "The Night of the Meek," what mysterious item turns a down and out department store Santa into the greatest gift giver of all time?

Art Carney, best known as Ed Norton on "The Honeymooners," stars as Henry Corwin, a depressed, hard-drinking department store Santa, in "The Night of the Meek." When Corwin finds a discarded sack with the power to create gifts, his heart's desire to become the real Santa is realized.


What's the distinguishing feature of Haley the fry cook revealed at the end of "Will the Real Martian Please Stand Up?"

A mystery unfolds at a lonely diner when the passengers of a bus determine that one of their number may be an alien in "Will the Real Martian Please Stand Up?" Although the Martian reveals himself in the end, the real twist comes when the diner's cook identifies himself as a three-eyed Venusian.


What happens to Henry Bemis after he survives the H-bomb in the 1959 episode "Time Enough at Last"?

"Time Enough at Last" stars Burgess Meredith as bookish bank worker Henry Bemis whose penchant for literature is getting in the way of his life. When the world is destroyed in an atomic exchange, he survives because he was lunching in the bank's vault. At last, he has time to read ... until he breaks his glasses.


How does Mr. Frisby escape his alien captors in "Hocus Pocus and Frisby"?

Andy Devine stars as Somerset Frisby, a man considered by his friends as the world's greatest liar thanks to his endless supply of tall tales about his life. When he's abducted by aliens who, having monitored him, take his lies at face value, he escapes by playing his harmonica.


Can you name the episode in which the elderly residents of a retirement home turn back the clock?

In the season three episode "Kick the Can," a senior residing in a retirement home stumbles on the secret of eternal youth — the magic of play. By engaging in a game of kick the can and other "rituals of youth," the residents find they've physically transformed into their childhood selves.


What happens to little Bettina Miller in the episode "Little Girl Lost"?

"Little Girl Lost" combines hard science fiction concepts with a relatable characters to create one of the most suspenseful episodes. In this story by Richard Matheson, a little girl slips away into the fourth dimension via an invisible portal in her bedroom while her parents struggle to find her.


What is the cause of the spreading darkness in "I Am the Night — Color Me Black"?

In "I Am the Night — Color Me Black," a small town is plunged into darkness on the morning of the execution of a remorseless man guilty of killing a bigot. The cause of the darkness is conjectured to be a manifestation of hate as blackness descends over other troubled spots on the Earth.


In a harrowing, silent performance, Agnes Moorehead single-handedly fends off an invasion from outer space in "The Invaders." Do you remember what the twist is?

The season two episode "The Invaders" stars Agnes Moorehead as an old woman living alone in a rural farmhouse. Attacked by what seem to be tiny creatures, she fights back. In the end, she traces the entities to a spacecraft on her roof, which is revealed to be from Earth.


Can you name the malevolent ventriloquist's dummy in the terrifying season three episode "The Dummy"?

Cliff Robertson stars as Jerry Etherson, a ventriloquist with a problem, in "The Dummy." Jerry, a recovering alcoholic, is convinced that his dummy Willie is both alive and malevolent. In a patented "Twilight Zone" twist, Jerry and Willie physically trade places in the show's shocking conclusion.


To whom does five year-old Billy speak to on his toy telephone in "Long Distance Call"?

In "Long Distance Call," Billy, a five-year-old boy, receives the birthday gift of a toy telephone from his ailing grandmother with the promise that he'll always be able to talk to her. When grandma passes away, Billy's parents are shocked to find that she's still in touch with the tyke.


To where does the diabolical, godlike child Anthony Fremont banish those who don't think good thoughts in "It's a Good Life"?

In "It's a Good Life," young Bill Mumy stars as six year-old Anthony Fremont, a sociopathic child with godlike abilities. Anthony, having isolated his community from the rest of the universe, holds his family and neighbors in a state of terror lest they be banished to the cornfield.


Do you know the title of the very first episode of "The Twilight Zone"?

"The Twilight Zone" first hit the airwaves on October 2, 1959, with a pilot episode penned by show creator Rod Serling called "Where is Everybody?" This unsettling episode sets the tone for the series. Earl Holliman stars as an airforce pilot who finds himself trapped in a city devoid of people.


A harried ad man's train ride home turns into a one way trip into the Twilight Zone in this first season episode. Can you name it?

James Daly plays a stressed ad executive longing for a simpler life in "A Stop at Willoughby." On his train ride home, Daly glimpses a small town called Willoughby but can't disembark there. When he finally gets off at the idyllic stop, it's revealed that he's dead and Willoughby is a funeral home.


If you could read the language of the alien Kanamits, what would you find in their book "To Serve Man"?

In the 1962 episode "To Serve Man," humanity's problems are solved when a seemingly benevolent alien race called the Kanamits arrive on earth. However, things are not as they seem. In the show's shocking final sequence, the Kanamits' plan for humanity is revealed to be a cookbook.


Which future "Mission Impossible" star plays a sadistic, black-clad gunfighter in the episode "Mr. Denton on Doomsday"?

In "The Twilight Zone's" third aired episode, the Western-themed "Mr. Denton on Doomsday," Al Denton, a guilt-ridden former gunfighter turned town drunk, regains his skill through the intervention of a traveling peddler named Fate. Martin Landau co-stars as Denton's tormentor, Dan Hotaling.


How does the misanthropic Bartlett Finchley meet his doom in "A Thing About Machines"?

Richard Haydn is perfectly cast as the fussy Bartlett Finchley in "A Thing About Machines." Abusive to both people and objects, Finchley is driven from his home when technology turns on him. His ultimate comeuppance is realized when his car knocks him into a swimming pool, where he drowns.


When the lights go out, a quiet suburban neighborhood descends into paranoia, violence and murder in this first season episode of "The Twilight Zone." Can you name it?

"The Monsters Are Due on Maple Street," written by "Twilight Zone" creator and host Rod Serling is among the finest examples of science fiction as allegory in TV history. A potent metaphor for McCarthyism and Cold War paranoia, the plot reveals tragic results of snowballing paranoia and groupthink.


What's the name of the vengeful plaything in the fifth season episode "Living Doll"?

1963's "Living Doll" stars Telly Savalas as an abusive stepfather in a battle of wills with a sentient doll named Talky Tina. Voiced by June Foray, the murderous Talky Tina is one of the first in a long line of killer toys in popular culture, beating Chucky and Annabelle to the punch by decades.


Which famous funnyman appears as the ghost of a dead billiards champ in the 1961 episode "A Game of Pool"?

Improvisational genius Jonathan Winters takes a rare dramatic turn as the spirit of a champion pool player in 1961's "A Game of Pool." The episode, written by George Clayton Johnson, features Jack Klugman as a skilled but bitter pool player living in the shadow of a legend.


Which of these is NOT among the trapped in the episode "Five Characters in Search of an Exit"?

A clown, a hobo, a ballerina, a bagpiper and an army major find themselves trapped in a stark, cylindrical prison in "Five Characters in Search of an Exit." Although this motley group desperately tries to escape, their fate is sealed when they're revealed to be dolls in a charity toy collection bin.


The party in the 1964 episode "The Masks" is set on which holiday?

A dying man plans a special Mardi Gras party for his gold-digging relatives in "The Masks." Aside from its superbly crafted script from Rod Serling, this episode is memorable for being the only installment directed by a woman — groundbreaking director and actress Ida Lupino.


In the episode "Nick of Time," the mystic seer fortune telling machine has the bobbing head of what mounted on it?

A superstitious man and his new wife encounter an uncannily accurate fortune-telling machine in a diner in "Nick of Time." The machine, a tabletop mystic seer, consists of a card dispensing box topped by a winking devil bobblehead. This episode marks the first of two appearances by William Shatner.


Where are the disturbing, late night phone calls coming from in "Night Call"?

In "Night Call," based on Richard Matheson's terrifying short story of the same name, Gladys Cooper stars as an elderly woman plagued by disturbing phone calls late at night. When the telephone company traces the calls, they discover that they're coming from a downed line in a cemetery.


A fearful old woman takes in a wounded policeman in the episode "Nothing in the Dark." What's the cop's secret?

"The Twilight Zone" was pivotal in launching the careers of many actors who would go on to become household names. Among that number is the ultimate leading man, Robert Redford. In "Nothing in the Dark," Redford portrays Death, who has come for an elderly woman in the guise of a wounded policeman.


In the episode "Walking Distance," where does Martin try to talk to an eleven-year-old version of himself?

Written by Rod Serling and inspired by his own childhood, "Walking Distance" is about a man whose car breaks down just outside of his hometown. When he reaches the town on foot, he's amazed to find that seemingly nothing has changed since he was a boy. Serling featured the carousel prominently in the episode as a nod to the carousel he loved in his own hometown.


Can you name the episode set in a future where young adults are required to undergo a procedure to give them an attractive but conforming appearance?

"Number 12 Looks Just Like You" aired in "The Twilight Zone's" fifth and final season. Based on a short story by Charles Beaumont, this episode takes place in a Dystopian future where young people choose a new, ideal body and face when they come of age. However, an idealistic girl has other ideas.


Which episode was science fiction legend Ray Bradbury's only produced script for "The Twilight Zone"?

Although famed sci-fi author Ray Bradbury wrote several scripts for "The Twilight Zone," only one was deemed filmable by creator Rod Serling. Based on a previously unpublished Bradbury story, "I Sing the Body Electric" is the story of a widower who has a robotic grandmother built for his children.


Can you name the benevolent old matron who watches over the children in "The Bewitchin' Pool"?

"The Twilight Zone" ended its run with "The Bewitchin' Pool" by writer Earl Hamner Jr. The last original episode to be broadcast, "The Bewitchin' Pool" tells the story of two children who escape their uncaring parents through a portal to a kids paradise overseen by the loving and benevolent Aunt T.


Can you name the episode in which an invasion force from space looks like it would be more comfortable in an off-Broadway production of "Grease" than in a flying saucer?

Earl Hamner Jr., who would go on to fame as the creator of "The Waltons," wrote eight episodes of "The Twilight Zone," including "Black Leather Jackets." In this story, an advance invasion force from a hostile planet appears on Earth in the guise of teenagers clad in black motorcycle jackets


How does the megamonical astronaut Pete Craig meet his end in "The Little People"?

In the season three episode "The Little People," turnabout is fair play for a Pete Craig, a sadistic astronaut who becomes a despotic god on a faraway planet of tiny beings. Accidentally crushed by a giant space traveler, Craig learns too late that there's always someone bigger.


In the first season episode "A Passage for Trumpet," which famous horn player does suicidal jazz man Joey Crown meet?

In the second of four appearances on "The Twilight Zone," Jack Klugman stars as a down-on-his-luck jazz trumpeter who decides to end it all by jumping in front of a truck. He awakes in limbo where he's convinced to give life another try by a fellow horn player: the angel Gabriel.


What power do the Venusians confer on Burgess Meredith in "Mr. Dingle, the Strong"?

Burgess Meredith stars as mild-mannered vacuum cleaner salesman Luther Dingle in the episode "Mr. Dingle the Strong." Dingle is determined to be an ideal guinea pig by the Martians who not only give him super strength but recommend him to the Venusians, who give him advanced intelligence.


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