★★★ January 20, 1961 Season 2 Episode 14
If you want to see where we are…HERE is a list of the episodes.
This is one of the comedy episodes. Imagine if you will…a car salesman that has to tell the truth. What a great world that would be. The movie Liar, Liar was probably influenced or based on this episode. It was shot on videotape and it unfortunately is very obvious. The outside doesn’t look like outside and it resembles the look of a soap opera. This is the one videotape episode that showed all of the limitations of that format. The only thing it does do is accent the terrible cars that he has to sell.
The casting again is good. Jack Carson plays Harvey Hunnicut the prototypical cheap used car salesman. He buys an old car and the car is haunted…who ever owns it must tell the truth. The acting like always is good but the presentation and some of the plot seems forced.
John F. Kennedy was sworn in as the 35th President of the United States at the Inaugural ceremonies held in Washington the afternoon of the very day this episode originally aired.
This show was written by Rod Serling
Rod Serling’s Opening Narration:
This, as the banner already has proclaimed, is Mr. Harvey Hunnicut, an expert on commerce and con jobs, a brash, bright, and larceny-loaded wheeler and dealer who, when the good Lord passed out a conscience, must have gone for a beer and missed out. And these are a couple of other characters in our story: a little old man and a Model A car – but not just any old man and not just any Model A. There’s something very special about the both of them. As a matter of fact, in just a few moments, they’ll give Harvey Hunnicut something that he’s never experienced before. Through the good offices of a little magic, they will unload on Mr. Hunnicut the absolute necessity to tell the truth. Exactly where they come from is conjecture, but as to where they’re heading for, this we know, because all of them – and you – are on the threshold of the Twilight Zone.
Harvey Hunnicut 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.
Rod Serling’s Closing Narration:
Couldn’t happen, you say? Far-fetched? Way-out? Tilt-off-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 – manufactured and distributed by an exclusive dealer – in The Twilight Zone.
Rod Serling … Narrator / Self – Host (uncredited)
Jack Carson … Harvey Hunnicut
Loring Smith … Honest Luther Grimbley
George Chandler … Old Man
Jack Ging … Young Man
Arte Johnson … Irv
Patrick Westwood … The Premier’s Aide
Lee Sabinson … Nikita Khrushchev
Nan Peterson … Young Woman