Twilight Zone: Season 5, Episode 12

Ninety Years Without Slumbering (20 Dec. 1963)
"The Twilight Zone" Ninety Years Without Slumbering (original title)

TV Episode  -   -  Fantasy | Horror | Mystery
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Ratings: 6.9/10 from 387 users  
Reviews: 5 user

An old man believes that his life will end the moment his grandfather clock stops ticking.



(teleplay), (story), 1 more credit »
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Title: Ninety Years Without Slumbering (20 Dec 1963)

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Episode complete credited cast:
Sam Forstmann
Carolyn Kearney ...
Marnie Kirk
Doug Kirk (as James Callahan)
Carol Byron ...
Carol Chase
Clock Mover
John Pickard ...
William Sargent ...
Dr. Mel Avery


Sam Forstman is an old man who lives with his granddaughter Marnie Kirk and her husband Doug. Sam lives a simple life and doesn't sleep much anymore. He's usually up at all hours tinkering on his grandfather clock, something that worries Marnie as his attention to the timepiece verges on the obsessive. The reason for that however is quite simple: he is convinced that should the clock ever stop, he will die. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis





Release Date:

20 December 1963 (USA)  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


William Froug had Richard De Roy rewrite the George Clayton Johnson teleplay "Tick of Time" before it was aired as Twilight Zone: Ninety Years Without Slumbering (1963). Johnson was displeased with this and ultimately never reconciled with Froug, and never contributed to Twilight Zone (1959) again. See more »


Narrator: [Closing Narration] Clocks are made by men, God creates time. No man can prolong his allotted hours, he can only live them to the fullest - in this world or in the Twilight Zone.
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User Reviews

Sometimes It's Right in Front of Us
12 December 2008 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

The man in this episode, played by Ed Wynn, is obsessed with death. He connects his mortality to a Grandfather's clock. He believes that when the clock stops, that will be all for him. The episode is a continuous portrayal of his fixations on the clock. When he needs to get rid of it he must have guarantees as to its treatment. Wynn plays the frenetic old fellow, using his strange voice and intonation for a nearly comedic presentation. He is really paranoid and perhaps mentally ill. He needs to know but he doesn't. In the end, the Twilight Zone fixes things up. We could say it's like clockwork. It's an OK episode because of the performance, and it is nice to see how things turn out.

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