Michael Chambers recounts recent events on Earth after the arrival of a alien space craft. The aliens, known as Kanamit, seem friendly and assure everyone they have nothing to be afraid of. In fact, they offer to share wonderful technology that will provide limitless energy, cure all disease and convert deserts into lush gardens. For the people of Earth, paradise has arrived. Chambers is an encryption specialist and they try their best to decrypt a book the Kanamit left behind. The book's title seems benign - but it's not what they think it is.Written by
KROQ radio (Pasadena, Los Angeles) used to use the dialogue when Michael Chambers asks Kanamit the time ("What time is it?") to announce the midday time ("On earth it is 12:00 noon.") See more »
Chambers compares translating the Kanamit book into English to decoding Japanese messages in World War II. This analogy makes no sense. The WWII code-breakers took a coded message which looked like a meaningless string of Japanese characters, and reversed the coding process to produce a readable Japanese message. The problem here is not that the Kanamits coded their book, but that no one on Earth knows the Kanamit language. There is no way that they could take the book by itself and translate it if they did not have a "Rosetta stone". See more »
This is the way nightmares begin - or, perhaps, end. Very simple, direct, unadorned. Incredible, and yet so terribly real, that even while they're happening we live with them, and digest them, and assimilate them. And if it's twelve o'clock noon, that's what you preoccupy yourself with. You don't think about twelve o'clock noon on the next day or the day after that. But that's what we should have been thinking about - tomorrow and the day after tomorrow. We were preoccupied with ...
See more »
The episode begins with a race from another planet coming to Earth and offering to make all our problems disappear. Despite our natural distrust of such claims, the planet soon becomes a paradise--with plenty to eat, peace throughout the land and humans praising these well-intentioned beings. However, despite the windfall, two translators who work for the United Nations doggedly try to unlock the alien language contained in one of their books. So far, they only have been able to translate the title, "To Serve Man", but the rest alludes them.
When it comes to the excellent show THE TWILIGHT ZONE, you can't find a better episode than this one--and that's saying a lot because they made quite a few gems. That's because this one is based on a short story that is so gosh-darn clever that you can't help but admire the episode. Plus, the acting, sets and mood is so well created that it just screams "quality television".
45 of 52 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?
| Report this