It’s that time of year again. Time to hunker down and watch the Twilight Zone marathon on the SyFy Channel. Or, if you’re impatient, time to get ahead of the curve and binge-watch the entire series on Netflix or Amazon Prime.
The SyFy Channel has been doing Twilight Zone marathons for years on both New Year’s and the Fourth of July. This year’s summer marathon starts at midnight Eastern time on July 4th and ends at 5am ET on July 5th.
It’s a fun tradition, and speaking as someone who’s exasperated with the news in 2017, it’s a great distraction. But you’re also welcome to cheat by watching the show on Netflix, Amazon Prime, or Hulu.
Do you have a favorite episode? Let us know in the comments.
The one where a pathological liar gets abducted by aliens who think he’s the smartest man on Earth.
The one where a magic old man can fulfill wishes during an era before kids were taught not to believe old men who said they could do real magic.
The one where a possible alien comes bearing a gift but the people don’t want it.
The one where a motorcycle gang of maybe-aliens invade a small town.
The one where a guy is about to go on a 20-year space mission in suspended animation but falls in love with a woman so he makes plans to make sure they’re the same age when he comes back.
The one where Buster Keaton travels through time using a time-helmet.
The one where a 38-year-old toy designer longs for the simplicity of his youth but discovers by way of time travel that romanticizing your childhood is pretty childish.
The one where an old man is convinced that once his grandfather clock stops he’ll die.
The one where a couple book a cruise on an old ship to try and rekindle their marriage but just as they’re starting to have some fun they slowly discover that they’re not supposed to be on that ship.
The one where an incompetent guardian angel tries to redeem himself by helping Carol Burnett.
The one where a group of humans have been stranded on a distant planet for 30 years but when help finally arrives to bring everybody back to Earth the new settlement’s de facto leader can’t deal with giving up his authority.
The one where a movie star is getting warnings from her ring.
The one where a compulsive gambler goes gambling with a friend who can change things with his mind.
The one where the future is filled with robot boxers but a faulty robot means that a human is going to have to fill in if our hero doesn’t want to lose a bunch of money.
The one where Mickey Rooney spends 25 minutes yelling at himself.
The one where there’s this dude that howls to be let out of his prison cell but you probably shouldn’t let him out of his prison cell.
The one where a man sells his soul to the devil in exchange for an incredibly long life which will not backfire on him at all.
The one where a guy wakes up but no one — not even his wife — seems to know who he is.
The one where an elderly couple go shopping for new bodies.
The one where a man who’s much older than his wife gets injected with a youth serum in an attempt to keep up with his wife.
The one where an evil old business tycoon sells his soul to go back in time, return to his hometown, and build his empire all over again, but nothing works out quite the way he thought.
The one where the sun won’t rise on a town with an execution that’s scheduled for dawn.
The one where a man wakes up at his own funeral which is super confusing because everybody thought he was dead.
The one where two kids can access a magical land through a portal in the bottom of their swimming pool.
The one where a man’s attachment to his dead mother isn’t very good for his relationship with his new wife.
The one where an old lawman visits a grave of an old baddie but really wishes he hadn’t.
The one where an elderly woman worries that Robert Redford might be Death, finally coming for her.
The one where everybody turns on each other when mysterious things happen and it’s probably aliens or Communists or something.
The current schedule lists the 4:00pm slot as a “Viewer’s Choice” between either Eye of the Beholder or To Serve Man. I asked SyFy what that means, and they said that they’re no longer doing a Viewer’s Choice. I then asked which episode they were going to air, but they haven’t gotten back to me yet.
So 4:00pm is going to be a surprise. Either it’ll be the one where beautiful people learn that they’re super ugly or something. Or it’ll be the one where an alien race lands on Earth to help humans out and nothing else happens and everybody lives happily ever after. I’m pretty sure that’s how those episodes go.
This is another case where SyFy was originally going to do a “Viewer’s Choice” but abandoned the idea.
So the 4:30pm slot is either going to be the one that clearly inspired Saw but without all the super gross stuff, but it does have a creepy clown so there’s that. Or it’s going to be the one where a rural woman is terrorized by alien invaders that definitely aren’t from Earth.
The one where a young boy can talk to his dead grandma through a toy phone.
The one where a robot grandmother is written by Ray Bradbury.
The one where a man stranded on a distant planet meets a stranded woman from a different planet.
The one where an average busybody is obsessed with exposing Communists and deviants in his spare time.
The one where soldiers travel back in time to Little Big Horn.
The one where a dude builds a nuclear fallout shelter and his neighbors make fun of him but then of course they all want to use it because shit’s about to go down.
The one where Captain Kirk starts seeing something on the wing of a plane that’s probably just a teddy bear that’s come to life oh god why is he shooting at it oh god why.
The one where some local cops try to find out which stranded bus passenger is actually a Martian.
The one where an alien race lands on Earth to help humans out and nothing else happens and everybody lives happily ever after.
The one where a man has a watch that can stop time.
The one where a book nerd survives a nuclear apocalypse only to get bullied by God, who apparently hates people that are near-sighted.
The one where a man can read people’s minds and learns that literally everybody is terrible.
The one where a couple wake up in a strange town and try to figure out what they did last night after partying too hard.
The one where a father goes to war with his daughter’s doll.
The one where a ventriloquist thinks his dummy is alive which seems to be a recurring theme in the Twilight Zone.
The one where a woman tries to return something to a department store but discovers a floor where the mannequins are creepier than usual.
The one where a museum curator asks to keep the wax figures of serial killers from a wax museum that’s closing.
The one where astronauts crash land and go at each other’s throats.
The one where a big city business man falls asleep during his commute and dreams of a small town community of the past, then gets a chance to go there if he wants.
The one where a writer can alter reality through his dictation machine.
The one where TV sponsors literally rewrite Shakespeare and Rod Serling takes some not so subtle jabs at both hack TV writers and the advertisers who want to dictate what he gets to put on the air.
The one where a guy kills a kid in a hit-and-run and then his car starts acting super weird.