Sunday, February 17, 2008

The Twilight Zone Diaries, episode 3

Mr. Denton on Doomsday

originally aired: October 16, 1959
written by: Rod Serling
starring: Dan Duryea, Martin Landau

"Portrait of a town drunk named Al Denton. This is a man who has begun his dying early. A long, agonizing route through a maze of bottles. Al Denton, who would probably give an arm or a leg or part of his soul to have another chance. To be able to rise up and shake the dirt from his body and the bad dreams that infest his conciousness. In the parlance of the times, this is a peddler. A rather fancifull looking little man in a black frock coat. And this is the third principle characcter of our story: (close up on gun) its function, perhaps to give Mr. Al Denton his second chance."

classification: western

story: A magic potion enables a washed out gunslinger to face down a young rival but it also puts an end to his career in an ironic twist of fate.

my summary: This one is all right. I am usually bored out of my mind during the western episodes. Al Denton is pathetic and I feel sorry for him; he reminds me of an old-time Jerry Lundegaard. Martin Landau is an interesting element in this one. I might have a few more nice things to say about him if he didn't become such a crabby old codge later in life (referring to the Mission Impossible premier with Kennedy on MTV). Good Ending.

"Mr. Henry Fate, dealer in utensils, pots and pans, lintaments and potions. A fanciful little man in a black frock coat who can help a man in climbing out of a pit or keep a man from falling into one. Because you see fate can work that way in The Twilight Zone."