★★★★★ January 22, 1960 Season 1 Episode 16
If you want to see where we are…HERE is a list of the episodes.
There are episodes that are hard for me to rate but some…like this one…is really easy…it’s a 5 star classic without a second thought.
A beautiful young lady is traveling across the country and has a blow out. After she gets the tire fixed she is back on the road but keeps seeing this hitch hiker everywhere she goes. The lady (Nan Adams) is perfectly played by Inger Stevens. This has everything you would want out of a Twilight Zone. Great suspense, a little horror, and a Twilight Zone twist.
Lucille Fletcher got the idea for this story in 1940 when she and her husband Bernard Herrmann were driving cross-country from New York to California. On the first day of the trip they saw the same odd-looking man on the side of the road it two different locations. She found the occurrence rather eerie and thought it might be a good concept for a story.
In the original story, the character of Nan was a male, Ronald. Rod Serling believed that a female in the situation would be reacted to with more feeling by audiences. She was named after one of his daughters.
This show was written by Rod Serling and Lucille Fletcher
Rod Serling’s Opening Narration:
Her name is Nan Adams. She’s twenty-seven years old. Her occupation: buyer at a New York department store. At present on vacation, driving cross-country to Los Angeles, California from Manhattan…Minor incident on Highway 11 in Pennsylvania. Perhaps, to be filed away under “accidents you walk away from.” But from this moment on, Nan Adams’ companion on a trip to California will be terror. Her route: fear. Her destination: quite unknown.
Nan Adams is driving across country from Manhattan to Los Angeles. Apart from a blown tire, the trip has been more or less uneventful. That is until she begins to see the same man, over and over again, hitchhiking along the highway. No matter how far she goes or how far she drives, the hitchhiker always seems to be ahead of her. She also seems to be the only person who can see him. When Nan decides to call home, all is revealed.
Rod Serling’s Closing Narration:
Nan Adams, age twenty-seven. She was driving to California; to Los Angeles. She didn’t make it. There was a detour… through the Twilight Zone.
Inger Stevens … Nan Adams
Adam Williams … Sailor
Lew Gallo … Mechanic
Leonard Strong … The Hitch-Hiker
Russ Bender … Counterman
George Mitchell … Gas Station Man