★★★1/2 December 13, 1963 Season 5 Episode 11
If you want to see where we are…HERE is a list of the episodes.
This one dishes out some Twilight Zone poetic justice to one of the characters. Patrick O’Neal plays Harmon Gordon who marries a much younger woman and then fails to keep up with her. He seeks an experimental serum from his brother Raymond that Raymond is heistant to give him. The serum is designed to make people younger but it has not been tested enough.
Ruta Lee plays Flora Gordon and it’s clear that why she married Harmon. Harmon acts blind to the way Flora treats him but Raymond sees through the situation. I don’t feel a lot of sympathy for Harmon because he had to know what he was geting himself into. The ending is a twist that I didn’t see coming the first time I watched it.
It’s not in the upper class of the Twilight Zone but not a bad one to watch.
Until episodes became available on VHS and DVD, this was one of four “lost” episodes of The Twilight Zone (1959) that were not included with syndication packages during the 1960s through the 1980s. The other three were The Twilight Zone: Miniature (1963), The Twilight Zone: Sounds and Silences (1964), and The Twilight Zone: The Encounter (1964). This episode, “Miniature,” and “Sounds and Silences” were excluded from the package because of lawsuits that had been filed claiming those episodes were plagiarized. “The Encounter” had drawn complaints of anti-Japanese prejudice and epithets expressed by one of the characters. The episodes were finally re-released for broadcast television in a 1983 special hosted by Patrick O’Neal, the lead actor of “Fountain”.
This show was written by Rod Serling and Lou Holtz
Rod Serling’s Opening Narration:
Picture of an aging man who leads his life, as Thoreau said, ‘in quiet desperation.’ Because Harmon Gordon is enslaved by a love affair with a wife forty years his junior. Because of this, he runs when he should walk. He surrenders when simple pride dictates a stand. He pines away for the lost morning of his life when he should be enjoying the evening. In short, Mr. Harmon Gordon seeks a fountain of youth, and who’s to say he won’t find it? This happens to be the Twilight Zone.
Harmon Gordon is now quite elderly but is married to Flora, an attractive woman some 40 years younger than him. She’s something of a gold digger and is now quite bored with her marriage. Harmon turns to his younger brother Raymond, a medical doctor who has been experimenting with cellular regeneration. Raymond’s experiments to date have been on lab animals and he’s reluctant to help Harmon as he has no idea what effect his youth serum might have on him. In the end, he administers his serum and by the next day Harmon is a new man, so to speak.
Rod Serling’s Closing Narration:
It happens to be a fact: as one gets older, one does get wiser. If you don’t believe it, ask Flora. Ask her any day of the ensuing weeks of her life, as she takes notes during the coming years and realizes that the worm has turned: youth has taken over. It’s simply the way the calendar crumbles…in the Twilight Zone.
Rod Serling … Narrator / Self – Host (uncredited)
Patrick O’Neal…Harmon Gordon
Ruta Lee…Flora Gordon
Walter Brooke … Dr. Raymond Gordon