Twilight Zone 1985...are any other episodes as good as the pilot?

Discussion in 'TV on DVD and Blu-ray' started by Nick Graham, Jan 17, 2005.

  1. Nick Graham

    Nick Graham Screenwriter

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    I picked up Twilight Zone 1985 season 1 this weekend, namely because I used to love it as a kid. However, after the stellar first episode, it's been pretty mixed at best. Aside from gems like Kentucky Rye and Nightcrawlers, things have ranged from pointless (Wordplay) and stupid (Dreams for Sale and Wish Bank) to just OK (Chameleon). Granted, I've only watched the first disc so far (I'll be starting disc 2 tonight), but I'm starting to get really disappointed already. Do things improve as the season goes on, or does it pretty much stick to the formula of 2 crappy stories plus 1 good one?

    The only stories I've found that live up to the original TZ are Shatterday, A Little Peace and Quiet, Kentucky Rye, and Nightcrawlers. Do things improve, or am I gonna be putting this set on the auction block after I finish watching it?
     
  2. todd s

    todd s Lead Actor

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    Message from Charity and Profile in Silver.
     
  3. Steven Gebs

    Steven Gebs Stunt Coordinator

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    There are a bunch of great episodes, and a few absolutely terrible episodes sprinkled in there as well.

    I think there are a few gems that make the whole set worthwhile though. It's funny some episodes that people hate, I love, and vice versa. I really enjoyed wordplay for some strange reason, it has a quirky charm to it.

    I'll name a bunch of good episodes when I get home tonight.....I just can't remember all the titles at the moment, and I'll name some episodes that are pretty much worth avoiding.
     
  4. Mark To

    Mark To Supporting Actor

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    It wasn't a great show. It wasn't a terrible show. Lets say you are rating it with 4 stars as the best. The original is a 4-star show. The remake, maybe a 2 and a half. A few good stories, a few bad and many so-so.
     
  5. Rick P

    Rick P Supporting Actor

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    Paladin of the Lost Hour.

    If you've got a dry eye after watching that one, then you're made of stone.
     
  6. Tony J Case

    Tony J Case Cinematographer

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    I would say that the new TZ follows the formula that Serling said about the original Zone. It was something like "A third of the episodes are exceptional, a third are average, and a third are bad."

    (Very paraphrased, mind you)

    There are some great episodes - A message from Charity, Paladin of the Lost Hour, the Star and so on. Some pretty solid, if not exceptional ones - Dealers Choice for one. There are also some real stinkers. But overall it's worth the 50 bucks I shelled out for it. I cant wait for season 2 and 3.
     
  7. TravisR

    TravisR Studio Mogul

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    Speaking of Seasons Two and Three of the 1985 series, when is it supposed to be released?

    I think TV Shows On DVD had a story waaaaaaaay back saying it was tentatively coming out on March 29. That's the same date as the already announced second season of 1959 series but Image hasn't said anything about the 1985 series yet.
     
  8. Steven Gebs

    Steven Gebs Stunt Coordinator

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    My 3 favorite episodes from season 1 are: Her Pilgrim Soul, One Life Furnished in Early Poverty, and Paladin of the lost hour.

    These episodes I think are great : To See the invisible man, A small talent for war, A matter of minutes, the star, profile in silver, button button, take my life....please!, I of Newton, little boy lost.

    The following I found to be good but not great: Gramma, dead run, wong's lost and found emporium, the shadow man, a message from charity, a little peace and quiet, wordplay.

    The following I found to be utter garbage and totally unwatchable ever again in my lifetime : Ye Gods, teachers aid, act break, still life, the little people of killany woods, the elevator, tooth and consequences, personal demons, the leprechaun artist and a day in beaumont.

    The rest of the episodes are just so-so.

    I do have a bone to pick with Shadow Play. I was utterly mesmerized with the premise of this one, it engaged me throughout the whole episode. I just felt utterly let down at the end.....I was totally hoping for resolution and got none! It killed me, the whole story was set up so well, I was just hoping for some answers. I was just hoping to see what was really going on.
     
  9. Dane Marvin

    Dane Marvin Screenwriter

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    I think there are some episodes that are way better than "Shatterday" actually. A lot of these will echo the sentiments of others: "Paladin of the Lost Hour" (the acting from the two main characters alone is probably better than any single acting performance from an original episode of the original TZ). That doesn't translate into it being better all-around episode than the best eps in the original series, but it certainly is worthy of the Twilight Zone name. "Profile in Silver" is another excellent episode from start to finish. Like an updated version of "Back There" but less flawed. "Wordplay" is definitely reminiscent of the type of idea Serling was so famous for coming up with and "Button, Button" is a surreal and entertaining piece all around. "A Matter of Minutes" also has the feel of an original TZ idea and is carried out quite well.

    If you were looking for this series to equal the original, it was a mistake purchase. But this is definitely worth keeping once you've purchased it.
     
  10. Chris Cooper

    Chris Cooper Auditioning

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    I'll echo Tony in that I have always thought Dealer's Choice was exceptional. The premise is inspired and, of course, the actors are extraordinary. For me, the purchase of the set was justified based on the commentary from Wes Craven alone. What I'd have given to have been on that set at the time of its production!
     
  11. Rutgar

    Rutgar Second Unit

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    As I mentioned in the other TZ 85 thread, I absolutely love "I of Newton". Ron Glass is classic. Don't forget to read the T-Shirt.
     
  12. Steven Gebs

    Steven Gebs Stunt Coordinator

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    I have to admit I watched Shadow Play 2 more times and really, really enjoy it now. I think Peter Coyote does an amazing acting job in this episode. I guess it had to grow on me. Was this episode a remake of an older Twilight Zone episode? It definitely has the feel of the original Twilight Zone to me.
     
  13. Craig Beam

    Craig Beam Screenwriter

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    Yes. "Shadow Play" was a 2nd season original TZ episode, starring Dennis Weaver. The original is infinitely better than the remake.
     
  14. Steven Gebs

    Steven Gebs Stunt Coordinator

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    what makes it better? curious....
     
  15. Dane Marvin

    Dane Marvin Screenwriter

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    I still haven't had time to watch the remake of "Shadow Play". I guess I didn't know it was in the season 1 set, which I've watched about two-thirds of by skipping around on the discs a lot. I have seen the original many times and it is a masterpiece. One of the most underrated of the originals.
     
  16. Phu Vo

    Phu Vo Stunt Coordinator

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    Not sure if this was a 80's Twilight Zone ep. or an Amazing Stories ep., and my details aren't very clear but the plot of the story revolved around having to cry into a jar and filling it up and once filled, the person that did the filling would never again have reason to cry and was happy.

    Anyone might know the name of that episode if it was possibly a Twilight Zone episode?
     
  17. Esten

    Esten Supporting Actor

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    That's a Tales From The Darkside episode called "The Tear Collector".
     
  18. todd s

    todd s Lead Actor

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    Any news on a season 2 release for the 80's version? I know season 2 of the definitive version of the original is due in March.
     
  19. Kenneth

    Kenneth Supporting Actor

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    Finally made it through my set. It was great to watch these episodes again since I hadn't seen many of them since they first ran. It was interesting to see how many of them were focused on the Cold War. With that over now some episodes have an anachronistic quality.

    Here are some of my favorites: Shatterday, Wordplay, Healer, Children's Zoo, Little Boy Lost, Examination Day, A Message from Charity, Paladin of the Lost Hour, Dealer's Choice, Wong's Lost and Found Emporium, One Life Furnished in Early Poverty, Her Pilgrim Soul, I of Newton, But Can She Type, The Star, The Misfortune Cookie, To See the Invisible Man, Dead Run, Profile in Silver, The Library, Grace Note, The Last Defender of Camelot.

    Of those Pilgrim Soul and Paladin of the Lost Hour are my favorites of the season. It was definitely great to visit the series again and I look forward to Season's 2 and 3.

    Kenneth
     
  20. Kevin M

    Kevin M Producer

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    I am surprised to see someone state a dislike for Wong's Lost and Found Emporium as it is widely considered to be one of the seasons highlights....opinions differ, that's what makes the world go 'round.[​IMG]

    Anyway, I am extremely glad I purchased this, I am very pleased with this set on the whole (although the mid-80's film-to-video quality from this show, particularly Shatterday, was hideous!!!) as the commentaries make it worth the price alone.....who else thought Harlan Ellison's track on Shatterday was a hoot!?![​IMG]
    I have to say that having read some of his non-fiction biographical works that IMO he is a consummate whiner, a brilliant writer but more than a little bit of a prima donna at times....he's legendary for this actually....I have to say that, until Harlan stated so, I had never heard Wes Craven described as an egotist wanna-be genius....(shrugs shoulders) [​IMG]

    The stand out episodes for me are as has been stated so far, To See the Invisible Man, Shatterday, Children's Zoo, But Can She Type, Paladin of the Lost Hour, Dealer's Choice, Wong's Lost and Found Emporium, A Message from Charity, One Life Furnished in Early Poverty, Profile in Silver, Her Pilgrim Soul, I of Newton, The Star, The Misfortune Cookie, Dead Run etc. etc. but the one episode that over the years I had always missed out on seeing is the one that stood out as remarkably potent was William Friedkin's Nightcrawlers...wow that was a riveting 24 min. of TV, Scott Paulin's intense performance was exceptional.....of course having Friedkin shake you violently before a take can do that to you.[​IMG]

    All in all a GREAT dvd set and worth every cent.
     

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