Twilight Zone: Season 3, Episode 21

Kick the Can (9 Feb. 1962)
"The Twilight Zone" Kick the Can (original title)

TV Episode  -   -  Fantasy | Horror | Mystery
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Ratings: 7.7/10 from 710 users  
Reviews: 10 user | 1 critic

An old man living in a rest home thinks he's found the secret of youth in children's games.



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Episode complete credited cast:
Ernest Truex ...
Russell Collins ...
Sunnyvale Superintendant Cox
Hank Patterson ...
Earle Hodgins ...
Agee (as Earl Hodgins)
Marjorie Bennett ...
Mrs. Summers
Lenore Shanewise ...
Mrs. Densley
Anne O'Neal ...
Mrs. Wister


Charles Whitley is an elderly resident of Sunnyvale Rest, a home for the aged. It's not a happy place and Charles' hopes of moving in with his son David are dashed when he's told they can't take him in. He wistfully recalls his youth where they played kick the can and didn't have a worry in the world. His close friend Ben Conroy begins to worry him when Charles suggests all you have to do is wish it, and you can be young again. Ben is worried his friend will end up in the loony bin but it's Ben who is in for a surprise. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis





Release Date:

9 February 1962 (USA)  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The title refers to a children's game related to tag, hide and seek, and capture the flag which can be played outdoors, with as many as three to a few dozen players. The game is one of skill, strategy, and stealth as well as fleetness. See more »


Charles Whitley: What a choice - to keep an attendant from pawing at my pulse all day, I have to sit like a vegetable on that porch.
See more »


Spoofed in Weird Science: Sci-Fi Zoned (1995) See more »

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User Reviews

Change their pills, quickly.
12 February 2014 | by (Ireland) – See all my reviews

George Clayton Johnson wove a story around a childhood game, like tag, in which the kid who kicks the can releases all the 'captured' kids in the game. Old age has captured the residents of Sunny Vale, an old people's home. A sad beginning has Charles Whitley (Earnest Truex) having his hopes dashed of going to live with his son. Whitley starts acting nostalgic and his curmudgeonly but well meaning friend, Ben Conroy (Russell Collins), becomes concerned that he may be going senile.

Magical, funny, sad, but ultimately delivering a pleasant afterthought in Serling's epilogue, this is a charming episode. The relationship between the two contrasting old guys is good and Truex plays Whitley's childlike ways brilliantly.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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