The Twilight Zone (1959–1964)
19 user 1 critic

The Whole Truth 

A used car salesman buys a car that dooms him to tell only the truth!


James Sheldon


Rod Serling, Rod Serling (created by)

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Episode complete credited cast:
Jack Carson ... Harvey Hunnicut
Loring Smith Loring Smith ... Honest Luther Grimbley
George Chandler ... Old Man
Jack Ging ... Young Man
Arte Johnson ... Irv
Patrick Westwood ... The Premier's Translator
Lee Sabinson Lee Sabinson ... Nikita Khrushchev
Nan Peterson ... Young Woman


Harvey Hunnicutt is the stereotypical used car salesman: a fast talker who, to put it politely, is prone to stretching the truth about the cars he sells. He buys a used car from an old gentleman paying him far less that it's worth. After the deal, the old man tells him the car is haunted. Soon, Harvey finds that he can only tell the truth. Not only to customers but even to his wife as well. When he tries to sell the man's car he finds the perfect customer. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis








Release Date:

20 January 1961 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Whole Truth See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (Westrex Recording System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


The title refers to the oath given a witness before a trial or deposition that he will tell the "truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth". See more »


Hunnicut puts a cigar on the bar rail when going to talk to a pair, but during the opening narration in the same spot, it's missing. See more »


[closing narration]
Narrator: Couldn't happen, you say? Far-fetched? Way-out? Tilt-of-center? Possible. But the next time you buy an automobile, if it happens to look as if it had just gone through the Battle of the Marne, and the seller is ready to throw into the bargain one of his arms, be particularly careful in explaining to the boss about your grandmother's funeral, when you are actually at Chavez Ravine watching the Dodgers. It'll be a fact that you are the proud possessor of an instrument of truth ...
See more »


Referenced in Everybody Wants Some!! (2016) See more »

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User Reviews

Works well enough...
3 July 2008 | by Anonymous_MaxineSee all my reviews

I have noticed on the IMDb review boards that this is one of the less popular twilight zone episodes. I agree with certain aspects, it's shot on video and comes with all of the limitations that that implies, the set looks cheap and the story is hardly the most interesting thing in the world, but it was interesting enough, at least in that it seems now that Liar Liar may very well be a total rip off of this single episode. If you can watch this movie and not think about Jim Carrey then you must not have seen the movie.

In the show's defense, this one paints a much clearer picture of the society into which it was released, in it's suggestion that all car salesmen and politicians are liars (this doesn't seem to have changed much), but particularly in the ending of the show, which will now be lost on the majority of modern audiences unless they are more familiar with American history than, sadly, most Americans are.

The show was released on the same day that Kennedy was inaugurated, giving it that strange feel that sometimes happens when imagining the normalcy that was taking place just before a national tragedy, although I have to imagine that at the time it must have felt just a bit like some political preachiness.

This is one of the simpler twilight zone episodes in almost every way, but the story moves along well enough despite it's relative lack of creativity, and the performances are satisfactory. It's not the best episode, obviously, but I have to say that you should be able to tell without even seeing it that the hugely negative reviews here on our beloved IMDb are blowing the drawbacks out of proportion...

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