The Twilight Zone

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The Twilight Zone is an American television anthology series created by Rod Serling. Each episode (156 in the original series) is a mixture of self-contained fantasy, science fiction, suspense, or horror, often concluding with a macabre or unexpected twist. A popular and critical success, it introduced many Americans to serious science fiction and abstract ideas through television and also through a wide variety of Twilight Zone literature. The program followed in the tradition of earlier radio programs such as The Weird Circle and X Minus One and the radio work of Serling's hero, dramatist Norman Corwin.

The series was produced by Cayuga Productions, Inc. a production company owned and named by Serling. It reflects his background in upper New York State and is named after the local Lake Cayuga where Cornell University is located.

The success of the original series led to the creation of two revival series: one series that ran for several seasons on CBS and in syndication in the 1980s, and another series that ran on UPN from 2002 to 2003. It would also lead to a feature film, a radio series, a comic book, a magazine and various other spin-offs that would span five decades.

Aside from Serling himself, who crafted nearly two-thirds of the series' total episodes, writers for The Twilight Zone included leading genre authors such as Charles Beaumont, Richard Matheson, Jerry Sohl, George Clayton Johnson, Earl Hamner, Jr., Reginald Rose, Harlan Ellison and Ray Bradbury. Many episodes also featured adaptations of classic stories by such writers as Ambrose Bierce, Lewis Padgett, Jerome Bixby and Damon Knight.

The term "twilight zone" predates the television program, and originally meant simply a "gray area." (Intelligence analysts in the early Cold War labeled a country a twilight zone if there was no definite U.S. policy on whether to intervene militarily to keep it from going Communist.)[citation needed] Rod Serling himself chose the title of the series, and said that only after the series aired did he discover that the "twilight zone" was also a term applied by the US Air Force to the terminator, the border between "night" and "day" on a planetary body.[citation needed]

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