January 25 in Twilight Zone History: Remembering Diana Hyland and Elizabeth Allen on the anniversary of their birth

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Jan 25, 2018

Today, January 25th, This Day in Twilight Zone History and The Twilight Zone Encyclopedia remember two fine TZ actresses born on this day: Diana Hyland ("Spur of the Moment") and Elizabeth Allen ("The After Hours").

Hyland (1936-1977) portrayed traumatized equestrian Anne Henderson, a woman on the verge of marriage who's terrorized by a black-suited woman on horseback in "Spur of the Moment." What we soon learn is that this mounted banshee is actually an older version of Anne herself, returning home from the future with a powerful warning about future events.


Anne Henderson (Diana Hyland) is confronted by her ex-lover David Mitchell (Roger Davis, right) while her fiancee (Robert Hogan, left) and father (Philip Ober) look on in "Spur of the Moment."

Elizabeth Allen (1929-2006) co-starred opposite Anne Francis in "The After Hours," portraying an odd department store salesperson who sells Marsha White (Francis) a gold thimble on the very dark ninth floor of the store. The fact that the thimble turns out to be scratched and the store manager insists that his store doesn't have a ninth floor proves unsettling for poor Marsha.

Allen brought considerable heft to her small but crucial role. A native of Jersey City, New Jersey, she had a long career in film and television. I always remember her as the striking Amelia Dedham opposite John Wayne in John Ford's island comedy Donovan's Reef (1963).


Elizabeth Allen (left) is the odd department store clerk who sells Marsha White (Anne Francis) a thimble in "The After Hours."

Hyland later won an Emmy for her supporting role in The Boy in the Plastic Bubble, which was given to her posthumously by her lover, young John Travolta. Sadly, she died from cancer at 41.

So let's raise a high toast and a birthday salute to two fine actresses who broadened the horizons of two very different episodes and moved us quite a few steps further into The Twilight Zone.

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