Don’t get me wrong. The Twilight Zone’s fourth season is still quality television. The stories are entertaining and still have the great twists audiences expect from the show. The extended running time just leaves viewers with a sense that a bit of fluff had to be added to each episode. Rod Serling said it best when asked about the extended time slot.
“Ours is the perfect half-hour show… If we went to an hour, we’d have to fleshen our stories, soap opera style. Viewers could watch fifteen minutes without knowing whether they were in a Twilight Zone or Desilu Playhouse,” Serling stated about the change.
All 18 episodes of The Twilight Zone’s fourth season are included in this 5-disc set. Every episode features a guest star that either went on to bigger and better things in Hollywood or were already established actors. There are appearances by Burt Reynolds, Dennis Hopper, Robert Duvall, Bill Bixby, and James Doohan to name a few.
Although Rod Serling handles the bulk of the scripts for the different episodes, other highly regarded writers contributed their talents. Richard Matheson (I Am Legend, What Dreams May Come) and Charles Beaumont (The Masque of the Red Death, The Intruder) both returned and filled in the gaps left by Serling. Earl Hamner, Jr. (The Waltons, Falcon Crest) and Reginald Rose (Twelve Angry Men) also came on board to take over writing duties when Beaumont left the show because of a sickness.
The Twilight Zone: The Complete Fourth Season is a great collection of the only hour-long episodes of the famous anthology series. Each segment is cleaned up and the video and audio restored. The stories might feel a bit stretched at times, but their overall delivery of shocks in the end make up for that.
The Twilight Zone: The Complete Fourth Season is available now on DVD.