Rod Serling's The Twilight Zone premiered on October 2, 1959 and over the course of its five-year run would churn out 156 episodes and cement itself as a classic of science-fiction television. Its influence would be felt in any number of shows and movies that would follow - from The Walking Dead to Stranger Things - and beyond, becoming one of the enduring pop culture staples of its era.
This Day in Twilight Zone History presents key commemorative facts about the greatest science-fiction/fantasy television series of all time, presented by author Steven Jay Rubin, whose latest book is The Twilight Zone Encyclopedia. Whether it's a key performer's birth or death, the date an episode debuted or any other related fact, This Day in Twilight Zone History presents a unique aspect of the rich history of this television series and the extraordinary team that created it.
Today, August 23rd, This Day in Twilight Zone History wishes Happy Birthday to a classic TZ lady, Vera Miles, and a classic character actor, James Millhollin.
Vera is the lead in the classic episode, "Mirror Image," portraying a woman waiting for a bus who begins to suspect that her exact double – her doppelganger – exists.
For me, Miles will always be feisty Laurie Jorgensen, waiting for Martin Pawley (Jeffrey Hunter) to come home in John Ford's The Searchers.
James Millhollin (who made a career of playing cranky fussbudgets) portrayed a befuddled store manager who tries to convince Anne Francis that they don't carry thimbles and they don't have a ninth floor in "The After Hours." He's also a TV producer in "Mr. Dingle, The Strong" and an antique salesman in "I Dream of Genie."
Whether they were leading performers or played character bits, the actors of The Twilight Zone were always perfectly cast and brought their A-Game to the set.