Twilight Zone – Ring-A-Ding Girl… #10

I’m going to write about my top 10 favorite TZ episodes in the next few weeks…Most of the Twilight Zones are like songs to me…to be enjoyed over and over. The Twilight Zone is not really an ordinary TV show. It’s THE TWILIGHT ZONE. This is my personal choice for #10 on my list.

If I had to name a favorite show of all time…this would be it. I have all of them and I’ve watched them all at least 5 or more times. Each are like a work of art on their own. I like shows that are “Twilight Zone like” but none measure up to the original. Even the reboots in the 80’s, 2000’s, and now doesn’t live up to the original.

Ring-A-Ding Girl was written by Earl Hamner Jr….the Waltons creator. He went on to write eight Twilight Zones and one more by him will be coming up in my top ten.

The way Rod Serling handled social problems with a science fiction twist was compelling. TV has a reputation of being dumb…and it earned that reputation fair and square… Serling cannot be blamed for that…he was all about quality.

Rod Serling Intro: Introduction to Bunny Blake. Occupation: film actress. Residence: Hollywood, California, or anywhere in the world that cameras happen to be grinding. Bunny Blake is a public figure; what she wears, eats, thinks, says is news. But underneath the glamour, the makeup, the publicity, the buildup, the costuming, is a flesh-and-blood person, a beautiful girl about to take a long and bizarre journey into The Twilight Zone.

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Unfortunately he died in 1975 at a young 50 years old. Now lets get to the episode…I don’t do spoilers and if I ever did I would mark it before you read it…so here it goes. Just a very short look at it.

The Ring-A-Ding Girl: This one is in my top ten of Twilight Zone episodes. An actress Barbara “Bunny” Blake is in Hollywood is about to take off to Rome to make a movie. She tells her PA that they will be flying over her old hometown of Howardville. She receives a ring from her sister which is giving her warnings to come home while she flies cross country.

Image result for ring a ding girl ring

She then visits her sister in Howardville. The Founders Day picnic is the same day but Bunny has other ideas. You can see something is bothering her so she goes down to the TV station. She announces that she wants to do a one woman play at the High School Gym. Everyone is upset because they think she is so full of herself that she is wanting people to come see her and not to the Founders Day picnic. She has her reasons and we find out at the end.

She knows something that everyone else doesn’t know…I won’t give away the ending.

Bunny Blake is a little self centered but likable. She is what you would think some stars of the 50s and 60s would be like. Maggie McNamara does a wonderful job playing her.

Cast

  • Maggie McNamara as Barbara “Bunny” Blake
  • Mary Munday as Hildy Powell
  • David Macklin as Bud Powell
  • Betty Lou Gerson as Cici
  • Vic Perrin as State Trooper (Jim)
  • George Mitchell as Dr. Floyd
  • Bing Russell as Ben Braden
  • Hank Patterson as Mr. Gentry
  • Bill Hickman as Pilot

Thank you for reading!

Classic TV Episodes: Twilight Zone – Walking Distance

The Twilight Zone is a show that I can watch at any time. Different people have tried to remake the show but it never works like the original. Picking one classic show is impossible but this is one of my favorites. Gig Young plays Martin Sloan who does a great job in this episode. Many people try to go back home but it’s never the same because of progress and change…Martin Sloan DOES go home and everything is the same…he even sees himself as a boy…and meets his parents…again.

I guess because we only get one chance. Maybe there’s only one summer to every customer. That little boy, the one I know – the one who belongs here – this is *his* summer, just as it was yours once. Don’t make him share it.

Martin, is it so bad where you’re from?

You have to leave here. There’s no room, there’s no place. Do you understand that?

The Twilight Zone: Walking Distance

The characters: Martin Sloan, Robert Sloan, Mrs. Sloan, Young Marty, Wilcox Boy, Charlie, Gas Station Attendant, Soda Jerk, Teenager, Woman in Park, and Mr. Wilson

Martin Sloan, a successful 36-year-old advertising executive, stops at a gas station. He’s very stressed out and behaves like a stereotypical rude New Yorker. In the distance, he sees the town he grew up in, Homewood. Curious about his childhood, Martin leaves his sports car for an oil change and walks about a mile and a half to get a closer look. His first stop is an old ice cream shop. Martin is surprised to see that the attendant and the prices are the same as he remembered.

Walking down the street, he sees a young child (the four-year-old Ron Howard), who turns out to be his old neighbor. Martin then sees an 11-year-old boy carving the name “Martin Sloan” into a gazebo, and he recognizes himself. The child flees, thinking the adult wants to punish him. Martin then goes to his house, and his parents answer the door. He finally realizes that he’s back in 1934. His parents don’t believe him when he says he’s their grown-up son, and he tries to prove it by showing them his wallet.

Desperately wanting to tell the 11-year-old that he should treasure this time in his life, Martin finds his younger self riding on a merry-go-round. The child, still thinking the adult is angry with him, runs and falls, and the two are injured simultaneously. Later, Martin’s father, who has examined the wallet and now understands the truth, finds Martin sitting alone by the carousel. The two have a sad, beautiful conversation about life, and the father gives his son the advice he really needed when the story began. Martin begrudgingly accepts that he must return to the present. On his way out of town, he stops into the soda shop, which is now “modern”… Seemingly at peace with himself, he gives the gas station mechanic a tip and drives away.

 

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0734689/plotsummary?ref_=tt_stry_pl#synopsis

 

 

The Twilight Zone

The way Rod Serling handled social injustice and racial bigotry all with a science fiction twist was compelling. He had to do it that back then because of sponsors. Picking a favorite episode (Walking Distance is hard to beat) is almost impossible. Black Mirror covers some of the same territory but nothing beats the intelligence of Twilight Zone.

Hands down my favorite show of all time. I never get tired of it. 5 seasons of quality 30  minute stories. Season 4 has hour long episodes. Just a few of them are a little forced but even the weakest are very watchable. Rod Serling was a great TV writer and he picked some great writers like Richard Matheson to contribute to the show. The show doesn’t age and the black and white only adds to it.

I would really look forward to labor day because one channel would always play Twilight Zones for 24 hours. I then just went out and bought the complete collection on DVDtwi.jpg.

The Twilight Zone has been revived a few times. In the 80’s and 2000’s but they didn’t come close to the original. A movie was made in 1983 called Twilight Zone: The Movie  but it came with a tragic a cost. Vic Morrow and two child actors died needlessly in a scene with a helicopter.

The movie was alright…I liked the Vic Morrow story but my favorite part was the intro with Dan Aykroyd “You want to see something really scary”and Albert Brooks. Again not even scratching the surface of the original series.

You could always depend on a twist in the smart scripts. I’ve seen all of them probably 5 – 10 times each. The one that is the most haunting to me is “Come Wander With Me”… It’s not the most famous one but I loved it…if you haven’t seen it check it out. A lot of future stars were on the show from Robert Redford to Jack Klugman.

Dan Aykroyd and Albert Brooks