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Lunch » Tags » Tv Shows » Reviews » The Twilight Zone: To Serve Man /Judgment Night » User review

The very best of "The Twilight Zone"

  • Jul 20, 2007
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In my opinion, the three events that would have the greatest impact on human society are:

*) Absolute proof of life after death
*) Absolute proof of the existence of God
*) The arrival of extraterrestrial life on Earth

In fact, it is very possible that all three are different manifestations of the same thing.
The first episode of this tape has the extraterrestrial Kanamits arriving on Earth. They are nine feet tall and they announce that their only goal is to serve man. They provide enormous benefits such as fertilizers so that enough food is grown to eliminate starvation, clean power sources that eliminate pollution and shields to defend a nation so that all wars end. It all seems too good to be true and it is. It turns out that the phrase "to serve man" is correct; however it is not in the supposed context. Humans are in fact being well taken care of so that they can be served as food. They are in fact the Kanamit equivalent of a herd of cattle. Therefore, while this episode is an instance of the third of the items in the list above, it is nowhere near satisfaction of the first two.
The second episode is weaker, yet still has tension. A man is on board a British ship in 1942, at the height of the battle of the Atlantic. He knows his name (Carl Lanser) yet cannot remember anything else. The ship has lost contact with the rest of the convoy and so is vulnerable to U-boat attack. In his conversations with the other passengers, Lanser seems to know a great deal about the tactics of the German U-boat captains. When the engines of the boat fail, Lanser is terrified as he seems to know that an attack will take place at 1:15 AM. He scrambles around trying to alert the other passengers, but the U-boat surfaces and its captain orders the deck gun to begin firing. Lanser grabs a pair of binoculars and looks out at the U-boat, spotting the captain as he is giving his orders. He is astonished to learn that it is him.
The episode then cuts to the U-boat captain in conversation with a member of his crew, who is expressing reservations about their killing innocent civilians. When the crew member expresses his belief that they will all be punished for their murderous deeds, the captain scoffs, noting that it is the nature of war and doing anything else would put them at risk. Therefore, Lanser's presence on the British boat is his eternal punishment for killing He is doomed to relive the event over and over again.
These two episodes are "The Twilight Zone" at its very best. With tight directions and story line, they explore unique aspects of the human condition and some of the possible consequences of unusual events.

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About the reviewer
Charles Ashbacher ()
Ranked #78
Charlie Ashbacher is a compulsive reader and writer about many subjects. His prime areas of expertise are in mathematics and computers where he has taught every course in the mathematics and computer … more
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Genre: Horror
Studio: 20th Century Fox

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