33 user 16 critic

The Twonky (1953)

Tweedy college professor discovers his new TV set is animate, apparently possessed by something from the future, and militantly intent on regulating his daily life.


Arch Oboler


Henry Kuttner (short story), Arch Oboler (written for the screen by)




Cast overview, first billed only:
Hans Conried ... Kerry West
William H. Lynn ... Coach Trout (as Billy Lynn)
Gloria Blondell ... Lady Bill Collector
Edwin Max ... Ed, TV Repairman (as Ed Max)
Janet Warren ... Carolyn West
Evelyn Beresford ... Old Lady Motorist
Bob Jellison ... TV Shop Owner
Norman Field Norman Field ... Doctor
Stephen Roberts Stephen Roberts ... Head Treasury Agent
Connie Marshall ... Susie - Girl with football team
William Phipps ... Student
Bennie Washington Bennie Washington ... Maybelle
Lenore Kingston Lenore Kingston ... Offended Phone Operator #2
Alice Backes ... Offended Phone Operator #1
Charles Phillips Charles Phillips


The last thing College Lit professor Cary West wants, while is wife is out of town, is a TV set to keep him company; but that's just what his wife, Carolyn has bought for him. Written by Rich Wannen <RichWannen@worldnet.att.net>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Out of Your Own Tomorrow... Out of Time and Space a Fearsome Power!


Comedy | Sci-Fi


Did You Know?


Based on Henry Kuttner's story "The Twonky", which appeared in the September 1942 issue of Astounding Science Fiction, under the pseudonym Lewis Padgett. See more »


After failing to send his car and The Twonky over the cliff, Kerry West starts driving again and when he speeds up the camera shot switches to the car's speedometer, and it shows the mileage is at 04136, and the face of the speedometer has changed from a black face with white numbers to a white face with black numbers. After getting into the Old Lady Motorist's car and she speeds up the camera shot switches to her car's speedometer and, by strange coincidence, it is also at 04136. See more »


Cary West: I'm not afraid of you, you king-sized cigarette lighter!
See more »

User Reviews

Twonky? Huh?
12 April 2001 | by artzauSee all my reviews

This film with the great Hans Conried is based on a sci-fi story by Henry Kuttner. The original story is wonderful about a little man who wakes us disoriented in a TV assembly plant. When the foreman asks what he does, he remembers he makes "twonkies." He does, in the form of a TV and disappears. Without this bit of knowledge, this film makes little sense in the beginning. Bit by bit, the information comes in as the hapless Cary West (Conried) is taken over by the Twonky. This theme of a TV coming into your home and taking over will be repeated years later by Spielberg with Poltergeist. Once you can establish this premise, this story unwinds beautifully. Hans Conried is at his best. Check this out. No great moments, no star-studded cast, just a simple message: TV sucks. No video for watch for it on the late show and check it out.

26 of 26 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 33 user reviews »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.






Release Date:

10 June 1953 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


| (TCM Print)

Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

Contribute to This Page

We've Got Your Streaming Picks Covered

Looking for some great streaming picks? Check out some of the IMDb editors' favorites movies and shows to round out your Watchlist.

Visit our What to Watch page

Recently Viewed