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May 21 in Twilight Zone History: Remembering actor Kelton Garwood on the anniversary of his birth

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May 21, 2018

Today, May 21st, This Day in Twilight Zone History and The Twilight Zone Encyclopedia celebrate the 1928 birth of actor Kelton Garwood ("Five Characters in Search of an Exit").

Along with William Windom's Major, Susan Harrison’s ballerina, Murray Matheson's clown and Clark Allen’s bagpipe player, Garwood is the hobo, trapped in a cylinder with seemingly nowhere to go. While Windom, Matheson and Harrison do most of the talking, Garwood is a quiet presence, eventually lending his support when a daring escape plan is hatched.

Based on a short story by Marvin Petal, this is one of Rod Serling's most interesting episodes – a hoot to watch and brilliantly directed by Lamont Johnson.

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Kelton Garwood's Hobo is confronted by William Windom's Major in "Five Characters in Search of an Exit."

Garwood (1928-1991) was a Columbus, Ohio native who later booked the recurring role of Beauregard O'Hanlon in the detective series Bourbon Street Beat. He also had the regular role of Percy Crump on Gunsmoke, using the pseudonym Jonathan Harper. He received $750 and a touch of immortality for taking the hobo role in the Zone.

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If at first you don't succeed... The Hobo (Kelton Garwood), the Ballerina (Susan Harrison), the Clown (Murray Matheson) and the Major (Wiliam Windom) contemplate another escape attempt in "Five Characters in Search of an Exit."

So let's raise a glass of Christmas egg nog to that quiet hobo, that amazing scenario and the strange places we go when we turn on the TV and watch The Twilight Zone.