Anthology series featuring both classic and modern sci-fi themes.
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1953   1952   1951  
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An anthology of horror stories hosted by actor Boris Karloff.

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One Step Beyond (1959–1961)
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The Twilight Zone (1959–1964)
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Ordinary people find themselves in extraordinarily astounding situations, which they each try to solve in a remarkable manner.

Stars: Rod Serling, Robert McCord, Jay Overholts
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Cast

Series cast summary:
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Cameron Prud'Homme ...
Edgar Stehli ...
 Burroughs / ... 4 episodes, 1951-1952
Theo Goetz ...
 Doctor Jarvis / ... 4 episodes, 1951-1952
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 Ginny Walker 4 episodes, 1951-1953
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 Doctor Allen 4 episodes, 1951-1952
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 Captain Nemo / ... 3 episodes, 1951-1952
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 Gordon Kent 3 episodes, 1951
Joseph Anthony ...
 Dr. Arthur Fulbright 3 episodes, 1952-1953
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Vera Massey ...
 Virginia 3 episodes, 1952
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 Narrator / ... 3 episodes, 1952
Sam Locante ...
 Bartender / ... 3 episodes, 1952
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 Dr. Tyrell / ... 2 episodes, 1952
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 Andy / ... 2 episodes, 1952
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 Carlotta / ... 2 episodes, 1952-1953
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 Lt. Hawkins / ... 2 episodes, 1952
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 Dr. Platan / ... 2 episodes, 1951-1952
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Mel Ruick ...
 Dr. Jack Farleigh / ... 2 episodes, 1951-1952
Truman Smith ...
 Cap Zanser / ... 2 episodes, 1952
William Kemp ...
 Sargeant / ... 2 episodes, 1953
Skedge Miller ...
Glenn Styres ...
 Airbase Personnel / ... 2 episodes, 1952-1953
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 Henry / ... 2 episodes, 1952-1953
Vicki Cummings ...
 Angie Fulbright / ... 2 episodes, 1952
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 Martenson 2 episodes, 1952
Paul Tripp ...
 Sam Whipple 2 episodes, 1952
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Stephen Elliott ...
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Ruth Enders ...
 Mary Jarvis / ... 2 episodes, 1952
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 Dr. John Borrow 2 episodes, 1952-1953
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John Boruff ...
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John McGovern ...
 Dr. Chappell / ... 2 episodes, 1952-1953
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 Elise the maid / ... 2 episodes, 1951-1952
Farrell Pelly ...
 Matthew the butler / ... 2 episodes, 1951-1952
Arthur Tell ...
 Doctor Thorne / ... 2 episodes, 1952
John McQuade
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John S. Hamilton ...
Eddie Hyans ...
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 The Girl 2 episodes, 1952
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 Host / ... 2 episodes, 1952
Luis Van Rooten
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Anthology series featuring both classic and modern sci-fi themes.

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Release Date:

3 August 1951 (USA)  »

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Runtime:

(84 episodes)

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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In a production of "Frankenstein," Lon Chaney Jr. played the monster. An urban legend states that Chaney was intoxicated during the live TV broadcast, due to his heavy drinking. In the broadcast (which is available on YouTube), Chaney is handed a chair - but instead of smashing it, he sets it down, and shouts "Break! Break!" while making smashing motions with his hands. However, Chaney later explained in an interview that he was not drunk. Before the broadcast, he had spent four hours in the makeup chair, having his monster makeup applied. When the performance started, Chaney assumed it was a dress rehearsal, and thus, did not break the chair when it was handed to him. Between scenes, the director informed Chaney that the broadcast was happening live, so in subsequent scenes, Chaney didn't hold back and freely broke pieces of the set. (In the YouTube video of the broadcast, he falls out a window and later smashes Dr. Frankenstein's lab equipment.) See more »

Connections

Featured in Classic Sci-Fi TV: 150 Episodes (2009) See more »

Soundtracks

Romeo and Juliet
(ballet music)
Written by Sergei Prokofiev
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User Reviews

 
The grand-daddy of TV sci/fi thrillers.
18 July 2006 | by See all my reviews

Television of the early 1950's had lots of science fiction programmes. You had your choice of "Rocky Jones, Space Ranger", "Flash Gordon", "Tom Corbett, Space Cadet" and the series I am here tonight to talk about.

"Tales of Tomorrow" was for the most part a well done and effective series which offered plots which never . . . well okay, seldom . . . strayed into outlandishness. Monsters were rarely seen but their presence was always felt. In the "Dune Rollers" episode for example we learn that mysterious rocks found only on a spot called Lightning Island have the power to merge and grow into giant rocks which can move on their own and radiate enough heat to burn a victim to a crisp. (If that sounds familiar and you have never seen the episode you are probably thinking about s similarly theme feature from the 1980's called THE CREMATORS.)

The "Blunder" episode will have you on the edge of your seat but you might as well relax. Scientist Robert Allen risks an experiment which might deplete the Earth's entire oxygen supply. Of course he is certain that this will not happen but his fellow scientists are not at all sure. Can they reach him in time to stop him? The ending will leave you asking "WHAT just happened?"

"The Crystal Egg" will always be a favourite of mine. Oscar winner Thomas Mitchell is a university professor who is asked to examine what appears to be a harmless curio. Ah, but when he looks into it he sees the surface of Mars. And one time, a moment which will make you jump, he sees something looking back at him!

"Test Flight" starring Lee J. Cobb is another good one. Lee is a wealthy businessman who decides to build his own rocket to fly to the Moon. A mysterious engineer offers him a fool proof plan to build a rocket and Lee nearly bankrupts his company to build it. Does it work? Yes, and Lee and the engineer are the test pilots . . . but is Lee ever in for a surprise after take-off.

Everyone has already written about the "Frankenstein" episode so there is little that I can add. So much has been said about this episode that watching it today is a little disappointing because many of you will be expecting more. The one live broadcast may have contained more "juicy bits" but these were edited (if they ever even existed to begin with) for subsequent re-broadcasts. Lon Chaney gives a really great performance, way different from his portrayal of The Monster in GHOST OF FRANKENSTEIN (1942) and this interpretation is wholly original.

"What You Need" was a very satisfying episode also. I was glad William Redfield's ruthless, amoral character got what he deserved but I wish Edgar Stehli had made a different decision at the end. You will see what I mean.

Okay so very often the backdrops are obviously painted. In fact in the "Appointment on Mars" episode the camera follows Leslie Neilsen as he climbs a rock and you can see the studio lights about where the backdrop ends! Characters blow lines and miss cues, even during the commercials which were also shot live. This only adds to the charm of these episodes and recalls the age of Live Television; an era which is sadly gone forever. Thank goodness for collections like this so people like me who missed that era can see what it was like.


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