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 (arriving this October). 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, October 17th, This Day in Twilight Zone History celebrates the births of actress Beverly Garland (1926-2008) and Marsha Hunt, who turns 100 today. Garland co-starred in the marvelous “The Four of Us Are Dying” episode, portraying Maggie, the torch singer who learns that her boyfriend has been murdered, only to discover him walking into her club one night. In reality, he’s a changeling - a man who can miraculously assume the guise of anyone he wishes, and now he’s making his move on Maggie.
Marsha Hunt, whose acting career dates back to the 1930s, took on the role of Anne Henderson’s (Diana Hyland) concerned mother in “Spur of the Moment.” Anne is being tormented by a black-clad woman on horseback who rides like a banshee and seems to be very familiar. Here’s to good memories of Garland, and a safe and sane centenary birthday to Ms. Hunt.