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Old 04-02-2019, 01:02 PM
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Twilight Zone (2019) Season 1 First 2 episodes


Not sure if there is enough interest in threads but I will give a mostly spoiler free review of the first two episodes that dropped yesterday.


The first is about a comedian played by Kumail Najiani. It wasn't bad but once you know what the supernatural element is the rest of the episode kind of writes itself but it takes forever for it to get where you know where it is going. It would have been better if it were twenty minutes shorter.

The second episode is an interesting remake of the classic Nightmare at 20,000 feet (now 30,000) feet. It was an interesting very 2019 take on the TZ but the episode feels like it pulls its punches at the end which makes it kind of weaker than it could have been.

Not the best of starts but I like Jordan Peele and I love the TZ so I will come back for more.
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Old 04-02-2019, 02:07 PM
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According to the review in the NY Times, they led with the two weakest episodes. Next week’s show is supposed to be miles ahead.
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Old 04-03-2019, 07:00 AM
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I've only seen The Comedian so far, and my thoughts mirror Quimby's.
I don't recall an episode with a premise exactly like this one from the original TZ, yet I thought this meshed in very well with the tone of the old series. It was definitely too long. Or maybe I actually mean too much time was spent on each performance. Tracy Morgan was a nice touch and a surprise, to me at least since I hadn't read much about the series. I'm definitely looking forward to seeing more.
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Old 04-04-2019, 02:21 AM
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I thought the first episode was pretty standard TZ fare. Nothing special, but typical of the old series, which means compared to most other things on TV is excellent.

The second one, the update of Nightmare at 20,000 feet was, IMHO, an absolutely excellent remake and in many ways better than the original and the 1983 update. I was on the edge of my seat through that one.
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Old 04-05-2019, 08:07 AM
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Originally Posted by UltraVires View Post
I thought the first episode was pretty standard TZ fare. Nothing special, but typical of the old series, which means compared to most other things on TV is excellent.

The second one, the update of Nightmare at 20,000 feet was, IMHO, an absolutely excellent remake and in many ways better than the original and the 1983 update. I was on the edge of my seat through that one.
Agreed, very imaginative and fun to see it set in modern (future)times. At the same time, it still had the old TZ "feel". I loved
SPOILER:
when he wakes up on the beach and sees the doll that is a replica of the gremlin from the original episode
.

I definitely did not see that ending coming.
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Old 04-05-2019, 09:19 AM
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I was vague in the OP to avoid spoilers but my issue with the second episode was

SPOILER:
Having the little tag at the end that everyone was fine except Adam Scott was a little cowardly. The creators seemed afraid to have a dark ending. The show should have ended with the plane going down and it would have been at an A- or at least a B+ in my book. With that ending it gets a C. The Gremlin cameo was nice though.
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Old 04-06-2019, 04:41 AM
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According to the review in the NY Times, they led with the two weakest episodes. Next week’s show is supposed to be miles ahead.
Ah yes, the tried and true method of hooking viewers on your TV show: give them your worst to start with. Well played, CBS.
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Old 04-06-2019, 08:47 AM
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Ah yes, the tried and true method of hooking viewers on your TV show: give them your worst to start with. Well played, CBS.
That is a little crazy. As an anthology they had complete freedom to make any episode the pilot...

I wonder if they picked the Comedian because Kumail Najiani has a large Internet following and that episode is free on YouTube.
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Old 04-06-2019, 01:44 PM
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Ah yes, the tried and true method of hooking viewers on your TV show: give them your worst to start with. Well played, CBS.
"The Wire" Effect
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Old 04-06-2019, 02:10 PM
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Ah yes, the tried and true method of hooking viewers on your TV show: give them your worst to start with. Well played, CBS.
Worked out for Black Mirror.
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Old 04-06-2019, 04:35 PM
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I felt the first two episodes were pretty good. I liked the plot line in 30,000 feet and how it varied from the originals. But I felt the comedian was the better episode. I didn't see the ending of 30,000 coming, but I did forsee the 'twist' about the pilot coming pretty early.

If these are the weakest episodes they have, then the rest of the season should be great. Because I felt those 2 episodes were above average for a sci fi anthology. And I watch a lot of sci fi and horror anthology. Original twilight zone, 80s twilight zone, outer limits, masters of horror, amazing stories, night gallery, tales from the crypt, tales from the darkside, fear itself, etc. etc.

I'd put the new twilight zone in the top 1/3 of anthology shows. Maybe its just excitement and I"ll get bored with time but so far its a good show.
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Old 04-06-2019, 06:34 PM
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I was vague in the OP to avoid spoilers but my issue with the second episode was

SPOILER:
Having the little tag at the end that everyone was fine except Adam Scott was a little cowardly. The creators seemed afraid to have a dark ending. The show should have ended with the plane going down and it would have been at an A- or at least a B+ in my book. With that ending it gets a C. The Gremlin cameo was nice though.
After a second viewing, I have a few questions about the ending:

SPOILER:
So, Joe with an "e" is a crazy follower of the protagonist and hijacks the airplane, passes out in the cockpit and the plane nosedives.

1. How did anyone survive?
2. If by some miracle they did, why did the passengers and crew want to kill the protagonist? From their perspective, he was a bit of a nut going around trying to stop the plane from crashing, but in the end he was right. Joe caused the plane to crash, yet we hear no mention of him not surviving (everyone survived but the protagonist) Why not kill Joe, if anyone?
3. Where is this island in the north atlantic which seems like a tropical paradise for the months from October 15 to February 15?

It makes me think that at least part of this was all in his head
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Old 04-12-2019, 07:21 PM
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According to the review in the NY Times, they led with the two weakest episodes. Next week’s show is supposed to be miles ahead.
Eh. It was a decent episode but them layering on social commentary got this episode higher ratings than it deserves.
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Old 04-13-2019, 11:32 PM
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Eh. It was a decent episode but them layering on social commentary got this episode higher ratings than it deserves.
Agreed. I thought "Replay" was the weakest episode of the series so far. Just far too over the top with the racist cop harassing those two for no reason at all.
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Old 04-14-2019, 05:51 PM
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I thought episode 3 was great! It was a clever way to present the social commentary and completely what I expect from Jordan Peele.

Maybe some of it was heavy handed but I feel that’s because it’s a CBS product too.

As for why the cop was following them that is literally the premise of the show. Weird shit happens in The Twilight Zone. It’s just as plausible as a guy wanting to take down a plane of strangers, a guy finding a podcast from the future or a camcorder that can rewind time.
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Old 04-14-2019, 06:40 PM
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I thought episode 3 was great! It was a clever way to present the social commentary and completely what I expect from Jordan Peele.

Maybe some of it was heavy handed but I feel that’s because it’s a CBS product too.

As for why the cop was following them that is literally the premise of the show. Weird shit happens in The Twilight Zone. It’s just as plausible as a guy wanting to take down a plane of strangers, a guy finding a podcast from the future or a camcorder that can rewind time.
Well, I don't want to hijack the thread into a political debate, but my takeaway from the show was that the rewinding camera was the "Twilight Zone" part of the show and the protagonist was using it to fight real word problems like racism.

Now, of course, I am not saying that racism doesn't exist, nor am I saying that there are no bad cops, but does this really happen to black people in America? I was under the impression that the issue was that cops see young black males as criminals when they are doing otherwise innocent things because of their choice of dress, choice of music, or other things typically associated with the black community.

Is it really a thing where a middle aged black woman who drives a nice car and is taking her well-dressed, well behaved black son, near a historically black school is simply screwed with by a Virginia State Trooper (and I'll bet Virginia is pissed about that)? Even after she buys him a piece of pie and is nice to him?

I mean, how did all of those other black students make it to the school?

Even in Mississippi in 1964, in Neshoba County, I cannot imagine that the police would have screwed with those two. The social commentary seemed exaggerated and really out of place.

Rod Serling could do it without beating you over the head with it.
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Old 04-14-2019, 07:26 PM
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Well, I don't want to hijack the thread into a political debate, but my takeaway from the show was that the rewinding camera was the "Twilight Zone" part of the show and the protagonist was using it to fight real word problems like racism.

Now, of course, I am not saying that racism doesn't exist, nor am I saying that there are no bad cops, but does this really happen to black people in America? I was under the impression that the issue was that cops see young black males as criminals when they are doing otherwise innocent things because of their choice of dress, choice of music, or other things typically associated with the black community.

Is it really a thing where a middle aged black woman who drives a nice car and is taking her well-dressed, well behaved black son, near a historically black school is simply screwed with by a Virginia State Trooper (and I'll bet Virginia is pissed about that)? Even after she buys him a piece of pie and is nice to him?

I mean, how did all of those other black students make it to the school?

Even in Mississippi in 1964, in Neshoba County, I cannot imagine that the police would have screwed with those two. The social commentary seemed exaggerated and really out of place.

Rod Serling could do it without beating you over the head with it.
You verbalized it much better than I did. I'm not black so I don't know what black people go through, but a well dressed and polite black man with his middle aged mother going to college shouldn't get this level of hostility. But maybe that is the point, it 'shouldn't' but it can. I feel it was a little over the top to the point where it became unrealistic. Virginia is 20% black, I doubt the cops have the time to harass every middle aged mother and her polite son who drives into town.
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Old 04-15-2019, 08:47 AM
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I think it's true that the cop seemed a cartoon villain. Especially the go around where she sat and shared a meal with him. But at the same time there are terrible people out there. I had a friend of my family who had to change his commute because he was being pulled over consonantly by a particular cop every single day (and to avoid derailing the thread just take my word that it was not with cause).
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Old 04-20-2019, 03:15 AM
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So what does everyone think about Episode 4: A Traveler? My thoughts:

SPOILER:
I thought it was very average. I don't understand why the aliens needed to cut the power at the shed in order to take over, to sow discord in a very small town, or attempt to get on the female police officer's good side and take down Greg Kinnear's character. They had extremely advanced technology. I also thought, again, that Jordan Peele was taking unnecessary pot shots at Christianity by calling it a "myth" and implying that the alien takeover was possibly a good thing.
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Old 04-25-2019, 11:14 PM
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I guess I'm the only one still interested in this new series and if so, I'll let the thread die, but until then..

Episode 5: The Wunderkind

SPOILER:
They did a bit of a remake of the one about the kid who wished people into the cornfield. It has a lot of potential, but I thought it really missed the mark. I know it is the Twilight Zone and anything can happen, but the rules of the TZ are self contained in the world in which it portrays. This was supposed to be real world and everything was just so zany. This kid had no special powers like in the original. No reason to be scared of him. I can't help but think that this was crafted to make some sort of point about Trump. Jordan Peele needs to realize that this is the Twilight Zone, not his personal stage to make social commentary. Episodes 3, 4, and 5 were all about him pissing his worldview all over the screen, not in a subtle way like Serling, but with his own sledgehammer. I'll keep watching, but am very disappointed after a very TZ-like episode 1 and an excellent episode 2

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Old 04-26-2019, 05:27 AM
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Gee, I wonder who episode 5 was all about?


That episode was both hilarious and horrifying at the same time.

Best episode so far in my opinion.

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Old 04-26-2019, 01:07 PM
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Gee, I wonder who episode 5 was all about?


That episode was both hilarious and horrifying at the same time.

Best episode so far in my opinion.
Did you enjoy it because you believe that it accurately portrays Trump? It's not a gotcha question.
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Old 04-26-2019, 01:32 PM
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Did you enjoy it because you believe that it accurately portrays Trump? It's not a gotcha question.
I think it's safe to say one's political affiliation will have an effect on their opinion of this episode.

That said, I wasn't even thinking about Trump until the kid started acting like a dick. That's when I was like: "Oh, now I get it."

But to answer your question, yes I thought there were some well crafted analogies in the episode.

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Old 04-26-2019, 08:52 PM
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Hahaha. That episode was a great analogy.
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Old 04-27-2019, 12:46 AM
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I thought it was a fun episode. Ham fisted for sure but still clever enough.

It felt like it could have been longer, like movie length, to make it more subtle.
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Old 04-29-2019, 10:06 AM
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I watched ep3 and somehow, stupidly didn't realize the 4th and 5th are available yet

I thought it was an intriguing premise but as others have said, very heavy handed. The social commentary just about obliterated the Zoniness. The closing narration is, in part, "Nina Harrison found that only by embracing her past could she protect her son's future. And it was love, not magic, that kept evil at bay"
That is way too corny for me and doesn't really even make sense. It's as they wanted to tell two different stories and weren't particularly concerned how to make them mesh.
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Old 05-05-2019, 07:50 PM
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Watched the first two the other day. Didn't care for them, so I haven't seen any of the others yet.

I liked the intro, but I still prefer either the one from the original series with the spinning door or the one from the 80s with the Grateful Dead music.

The episode about the comedian left me cold. It might've worked for a half-hour episode, but this one just dragged on and on. Not sure how I feel about... what was the term? Lick my pussy? That just seemed to be trying too hard to be edgy.

I appreciate the riffing on Nightmare at 20,000 Feet, but the new episode wasn't all that great. The social commentary was too in-your-face, and I hated the ending. It was pointless and ridiculous.

Immediately after watching it, we watched the Shatner original. Again, I appreciate all the little threads from the original they wove into the new one--and there were a lot--but I just didn't like 30,000 Feet.

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Old 05-06-2019, 11:20 AM
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I watched the remaining episodes and I wish I could say I loved them; I very very much wanted to. TZ is one of my all time favorite series and with JP behind it, I figured it couldn't go wrong.

Maybe(probably) my expectations were too high. I was hoping for that chilling, TZ irony and these stories don't seem to have that. Am I missing something?

I get that the one with the 12 year old running for president was a spoof of Trump and also a tribute to the cornfield kid, but was there supposed to be a moral or twist. A man literally destroys himself because of his self serving course of action. And. . .?

Six Degrees of Freedomcompletely lost me. I didn't like any of the characters, too much time was spent on the technical NASA speak and in the end I really had no idea what the point was. Almost redeemed by the use the Interrupters' Family.

The Travellerwas interesting to watch. It looked like it was going somewhere and then "pffffft".

If anyone would care to explain any of the episodes or point out what I missed, I'm wide open. If more eps are made, I'll watch but I'll try to keep my expectations reasonable.
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Old 05-10-2019, 04:51 AM
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Just watched episode 7. I enjoyed it. Definitely the darkest episode yet.

But man oh man, this episode is going piss some people off. I'm afraid Mr. Peele may have overplayed his hand.
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Old 05-11-2019, 05:19 AM
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If it wasn't the Twilight Zone, I would give up. Episode 6 was passable, but very below average TZ fare. Episode 7 was an absolute abortion.

Jordan Peele does not want the Twilight Zone. He wants to preach to people for an hour. Of all of his social commentary, Episode 7 was the worst:

SPOILER:
So the meteors did nothing. They were placebos that gave men the excuse to be their normal violent selves. So what started it? Meteors are falling so I'll become violent? And if it was a placebo, what caused the spider veins and the bloodshot eyes?


I was looking forward to this series and paid for CBS All-Access just to watch it. What a horrendous disappointment.
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Old 05-11-2019, 05:25 AM
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Six Degrees of Freedomcompletely lost me. I didn't like any of the characters, too much time was spent on the technical NASA speak and in the end I really had no idea what the point was. Almost redeemed by the use the Interrupters' Family.
The best and most original premise for a TZ episode of the series. But then we get 35 minutes of interpersonal drama followed by the payoff which was decent, not the most original, but at least something. However:

SPOILER:
I wasn't clear if this was real life. It was clear that aliens were watching and now that these astronauts made the decision to go to Mars, they would make contact. But it looked like they had been watching several simulations and I'm not sure if the characters we saw were all simulations. And now make contact? Which who? The surviving 4 people on Mars who will soon die? I didn't really tie in the real meaning of the episode.
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Old 05-12-2019, 01:59 AM
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I wonder if they'll attempt a remake of "The Monsters Are Due On Maple Street" except somehow make it even more obvious than the 2002 reboot one where it was terrorists not aliens that were supposedly invading the town.

Like it's going to be about white guys who wear red hats who immediately start murdering their minority neighbors when they hear immigrants are secretly in the town.
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Old 05-16-2019, 01:24 PM
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Oh boy. Episode 7: Point of Origin

SPOILER:
Another political hack job and not even a good one. Sure, we refer to people passing through a portal from another dimension as a "caravan." And the hit jobs are not even believable.
Imagine if you married a woman and found out she illegally immigrated to the United States as a 5 year old with her parents. You shun her and let the authorities take her? And what is up with the Ice Cream Truck in winter? The ending was given away in the first three minutes.
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Old 05-16-2019, 01:36 PM
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Oh boy. Episode 7: Point of Origin

SPOILER:
Another political hack job and not even a good one. Sure, we refer to people passing through a portal from another dimension as a "caravan." And the hit jobs are not even believable.
Imagine if you married a woman and found out she illegally immigrated to the United States as a 5 year old with her parents. You shun her and let the authorities take her? And what is up with the Ice Cream Truck in winter? The ending was given away in the first three minutes.
That's episode 8 for anybody thinking about clicking the spoiler.
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Old 05-22-2019, 04:40 PM
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Well, Episode 9 on tomorrow night. I'll watch it and then boycott the last episode of the season.

Just kidding. It's the Zone. I'll watch both episodes and come here and bitch.
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Old 05-24-2019, 12:12 AM
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I would post a spoiler box, but I have no idea what Episode 9 was about. It started out great, no political commentary, good TZ fare, but I don't understand what the moral was to be learned, what he learned, and the point of the ending.
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Old 05-25-2019, 03:38 PM
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I would post a spoiler box, but I have no idea what Episode 9 was about. It started out great, no political commentary, good TZ fare, but I don't understand what the moral was to be learned, what he learned, and the point of the ending.


Ok good, glad it wasn’t just me. It ended and I was thoroughly confused.

Always like to see Chris O’Dowd though, so it had that.
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Old 05-25-2019, 03:43 PM
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Rod Serling could do it without beating you over the head with it.
Agreed. I watched that episode (#3) last night, and that'll be the last of the new series I see. So, of the three episodes I've seen, I give the new Twilight Zone 1-1/2 stars.
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Old 05-27-2019, 02:03 PM
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Ok good, glad it wasn’t just me. It ended and I was thoroughly confused.

Always like to see Chris O’Dowd though, so it had that.
This was the closing narration:

"Human beings have a funny way of treating things like people. But today, they'll learn that as more as objects are valued more that lives, tragedy will be forever manufactured here in the Twilight Zone."

I would put it in a spoiler box, but it had nothing at all to do with anything in the entire episode. At no time did Chris O'Dowd have any object that he valued or treated like a person. He expressly turned down huge sums of money for the gun, and threw it in the lake. Using it made his life better by all accounts.

To the extent that he started shooting the gun and becoming obsessed with it was because the gun clearly had supernatural qualities, not from some obsession with guns. The fact that everyone seemed to be named Jeff, even a dog, was something that was not explored at all.

Yes, he probably should have actually sold the gun instead of throwing it in the lake where a kid could find it, but the closing narration doesn't make sense. The tragedy (assuming that one of the kids gets shot) was not due to his valuation of the gun or worship of it, it was because he tried to rid himself of it (for some unknown reason since all of his interactions with it were positive).

I'm just scratching my head over everything about the episode.
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Old 06-04-2019, 09:25 PM
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Finally caught up with the season. Really uneven. The best episode was probably the Immigration one but even that one was not great. And the final episode? I get what it was trying to do (be a love letter to the original) but it missed the mark. Hopefully next season will improve.
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Old 06-06-2019, 11:55 AM
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Finally caught up with the season. Really uneven. The best episode was probably the Immigration one but even that one was not great. And the final episode? I get what it was trying to do (be a love letter to the original) but it missed the mark. Hopefully next season will improve.
Yes, the entire season was a terrible disappointment and a disservice to the Twilight Zone name. A reboot of the series has incredible potential that Peele simply could not pull off.
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