50 years ago this week, Rod Serling a former paratrooper, boxer, and three time Emmy Award winning writer from the experimental live drama series Playhouse 90 had attempted to escape controversy as a social/political critic in creating a “fantasy” series. His now famous interview with Mike Wallace in which he claims he’s no longer interested in deeper subjects was of course a classic boxer’s feint.
Serling redefined television. Along with other contemporary Teleplay writers like Reginald Rose and Gore Vidal they saw the small box as an opportunity to tell important stories- to entertain and to move people to the great plights of the modern age.
Serling began his career in radio but his five years in the Twilight Zone became one of the most influential in popular culture.
Fifty years later the shows are still relevant, the themes are still gripping, and Serling deserves all the credit. Thanks Rod.