Monday, February 27, 2017

R.I.P. Bill Paxton - "Game over, man!"

Songs of My Life #38 - AC/DC - Live Wire - 1975

This might seem like a simple thing to say, but what I love about this song is its simplicity. Sure, AC/DC might have made a career out of it, but this is magnificently brilliant in its simple tones.

Take a listen. The simple open string bass runs along the start of the song, eventually joined by the simple strum of the guitar, the tap on the high hats, the joining of the 4/4 beat of the drums, the rhythm riff and finally Bon Scott's vocals over the top. It's all so simple, but constructed brilliantly to build to the crescendo of the chorus, the second verse, the guitar solo. This is the one, the AC/DC song that gets me every time, the one I love to jam to, because it is just a terrific song in which all the parts almost start on their own, and join to become one.

Play it loud, and sing it loud. \m/

Relay For Life and Other Matters

Can I just write something here to express my pride, admiration and love for my family after a long and successful weekend at the Shellharbour Relay For Life.

Eldest daughter Jessica was a beacon, not only participating in the stalls at our team table and walking her laps, she performed with her school vocal group on Saturday afternoon who were all wonderful as always. She was supportive and helpful and showed the true spirit of what the event is for. I was extremely proud of her.
Middle daughter Madeleine was as enthusiastic as she always is. She wants to be 25 years old now, and carries herself like it. She promoted and sold our stuff, she walked around the track selling Zooper Doopers, and she was bubbly and excited to be involved. She also helped do someone's makeup for the late show Saturday night, which i think she was most excited about. She is a whirlwind, something she gets from her mother.
Youngest child and son Josh had a ball. He had been built up by his father during cricket in the morning, suggesting if he made runs and a couple of others made runs they could get the 110 they needed to knock off the leaders. The resulting golden duck, from the ball of the day mind you, led him to tears - not for himself, but for thinking he'd let his team down. He pulled himself together not long after, but again I was left thinking how lucky I am with my kids. He mightn't have done many laps at Relay, but he played cricket, Aussie rules, soccer and every other sport he could be involved in.

Finally there is Helen Peters who for the last few months has been a superstar in organising her 'team' for Relay For Life. 48 members in all, she has been the centre of the cyclone, directing the troops, finding donations from local businesses for the team raffle prizes, putting together what people had to bring on the day, who would be there and when, and then on the day always supervising the whole shebang to ensure everything ran smoothly. She wasn't always able to do what SHE wanted, but she sacrificed that to make sure everything ran right on her ship. Along with this she has juggled three kids and their activities and a husband who at times is less supportive than she deserves. I can assure you I would have dressed up on Saturday night for no other person. She thought it would be fun, and the idea gave her pleasure, so it really was the least I could do to help HER Relay experience. Though I sometimes see it as an inconvenience, you cannot help but admire her drive and energy. Along with all of the others who worked so hard on Saturday and Sunday, raising over $2,700 so far from the Walker & Talkers team is a triumph and a credit to Helen.

Today is also our 24th wedding anniversary. While no ship sails on a calm ocean at all times, I guess it is how you survive the storms that dictates how your boat sails on afterwards. This weekend is a timely reminder of the remarkable woman I share my life with and continue to love despite the hiccups that come along. Love enough, in fact, to dress up in drag in a raging storm just because it amuses her.

Sunday, February 26, 2017

Aussies Up 1-0 As India Capitulate to "Average Second Spinner"

As an Australian cricket tragic, the Test match that concluded against India yesterday was one of the most amazing victories in my lifetime. Others have been just as satisfying (every victory over England for instance), but for sheer unadulterated pleasure at the unlikelihood of the win it was excitingly magnificent.

There is no doubt that Australia had the lion share of luck, but most of it was through India's errors than major umpiring errors or lucky shots or such things. If India could catch and use the DRS they would have been a lot closer, but it was not to be.
  1. Steve Smith was dropped four times, and an LBW given not out when India had no reviews, but his resilience through this and the spinning tops sent down by Ashwin and Jadeja was incredible. If anyone deserved some fortune it was the Australian captain, and his innings helped pave the way for the unassailable lead that was attained. And, given all of the rubbish the Australian team seems to receive when they appear arrogant on the cricket field, it was interesting to see that NOT ONE Indian cricketer applauded his century or acknowledged it in any way. All your own doing, corkheads.
  2. India's openers did a Watson and burned both of their reviews early, and ludicrously. It's no wonder they don't want to use it, because they have no idea how to use it.
  3. Steven O'Keefe. The Test match that dreams are made of. It is justification of Cricket Australia taking him away from white ball cricket to play Grade and 2nd XI red ball cricket, and of O'Keefe himself seeking out left arm spinners with Indian experience. Everything has worked for him, and no matter what anyone thought of his selection, he has proven himself worthy, and that his first class record is no fluke. It is wonderful to see hard work bring rewards, in the same way that is did for Renshaw with the bat.
  4. How wonderful was it to see Kohli bowled not offering a shot, and then stand there as if he was W.G.Grace, expecting to be allowed to stay at the crease because, after all, he is Virat Kohli. Get off the ground corkhead.
  5. Was Shane Warne in charge of deciding the Man of the Match? How do you get 12 wickets and not be player of the match? Honestly. I hope Mitch Starc at least bought SOK a beer.
It has been a great Test for Australia, to lead the series 1-0. There is still so much hard work to do. India will (probably) not field so poorly again. India will (probably) not bat so poorly again. Australia will likely not get the rub of the green so much again. Batting first was a massive bonus that we can't expect will happen again. There are still big question marks about the Marsh brothers and the wicket-keeper. This win will not guarantee a series victory.

But my goodness, Test match cricket is never so sweet than when you kick the arse of an opponent who thought all they had to do was doctor the pitch and turn up and they would win.


Saturday, February 25, 2017

Warne Gets SOK Shoved Down His Throat as Aussies Dominate

Not in our wildest dreams could anyone have predicted what happened on Day 2 in Pune. Some of it, such as Starc being dismissed in the first over of the day, having Australia being dismissed for 260... yes, that was predictable. But trying to negotiate the rest of the day's play would have broken a crystal ball.
  1. The Australian quicks did exactly what they had to do at the top of the order, busting through with pace and guile. Hazelwood's dismissal of Vijay was just brilliant, the away swinger to the keeper. Then Starc, fast and short at Pujara, before the wide tempter to Kohli drew the edge. Brilliant and inspiring from the fast men when it was needed.
  2. Rahul's shot was a match changer. In control with 64, and India had regained balance at 3/94, his complete error in judgement was ill thought out, and gave O'Keefe his first wicket in India. It was the moment that India's world exploded.
  3. India lost 7/11 in their own backyard. Completely ludicrous. Suddenly O'Keefe and Lyon were unplayable. What happened? The wicket? Panic? Arrogance? Whatever it was it was beautiful to watch.
  4. Steven O'Keefe take a bow. What a wonderful reward for persistence and patience. He has been derided publicly by such 'experts' as Shane Warne who has named every other spinner in Australia as more deserving of a spot in the Australian side. Through it all SOK has never once taken the bait to respond, he has been humble in interviews and respectful of the chances he has been given and of the help his teammates and captain have given him. His First Class record, better than any other spinner in Australia, is proof that he could bowl and deserved his chance, and he was rewarded yesterday for it. He himself admitted it will be tougher in the second innings against the Indian batting line up. But today was his and will always be his. Thumbs up.
  5. Australia's catching is the difference. Handscomb took three pearlers, Warner and Starc two great outfield catches, and Smith the one to close the innings. Brilliant. On the other side of the coin, Smith has already been dropped three times in his fifty, two of which should have been taken. If any of them had been caught Australia could already have been all out. Costly.
  6. Handscomb and Renshaw were both impressive with the bat again, despite their dismissals. They looked the part on a tough batting wicket. Good signs. Shaun Marsh not so much.
  7. Ashwin always looked dangerous on this wicket, and is probably the early key this afternoon. If Smith and Marsh can see off the first hour then 400 lead is still possible.
Australia is 4/143, a lead of 298 with 6 wickets in hand. Another fascinating day awaits us in Pune. I for one cannot wait.

Friday, February 24, 2017

Renshaw Runs and Starc Smashes to Start Series on Par

Day One in Pune probably went as well as could have been expected for Australia, and if you had asked most people at the start of the day would they have accepted a score line of 9/256 at stumps, they would have said yes. A number of talking points arose.

  1. Allan Border savaging Matthew Renshaw for retiring ‘ill’. It was harsh, and straight out of the old boys textbook, and certainly tough on Shaun Marsh who had to rush out to bat 15 minutes before lunch. But really, hard cheese. In this day of over burdening the ‘duty of care’ in the workplace, what did it matter? Border’s point was valid, but if Renshaw had been dismissed as a result of staying at the wicket, how would that have helped Australia’s cause? Move on.
  2. Renshaw’s brilliant knock. For all the talk before the series that he should not play, he proved to be the rock. I thought he was magnificent, and it took an unplayable ball to get him out too. In completely foreign conditions, he played as good an innings as you could wish to see. It wasn’t a century, but it was great viewing. Well played young man.
  3. The top order. Once again Dave Warner had done the hard work, and then hung his bat out to dry to play on. He’ll be dirty. Shaun Marsh got tangled up and bobbled the ball to leg slip. The jury is still out on his effectiveness. Peter Handscomb was dismissed in exactly the fashion that we all knew he would over there, LBW on the back foot. He looked good, but with his technique you would put money on him being dismissed in that fashion in every innings he plays in India. Then Steve Smith threw his wicket away, having grafted for over 90 deliveries. It was the same thing he did in Sri Lanka. Both he and Warner need to stop these types of dismissals repeating time and again if Australia is to be any chance on the sub-continent.
  4. Mitch Marsh and Matthew Wade. Both looked as bad as their recent form suggests. All at sea, with no real idea how to stop the onslaught that was coming at them. The fact that they have been retained in this team for so long now for no result means that they are stuck. Both are free flowing batsmen in other forms of the game, which suggests that they need to play their natural game in order to score runs. However, because there is now so much pressure on their positions in the team, if they get dismissed playing that way, they will be lambasted and the pressure intensifies even more. To be honest, I have no brief for either of them, but the only way for them to succeed now is to show positive intent at the crease against this attack on this wicket. Better to go down fighting than with a whimper. In the second innings they need to attack, get down the wicket, hit the ball hard, because if they bat like they did yesterday again, they will go just as meekly.
  5. Mitch Starc is the perfect example. There is no pressure on Starc to make runs because he is our opening bowler, so he can play the way he does best, with aggressive intent. When it comes off, like yesterday, he is applauded. When he fails, well, he’s just there for his bowling anyway. Marsh and Wade probably need to go in this direction if they are to save their careers and help Australia fight back.
  6. The pitch. When Ravi Shastri says at the toss “I have never seen a pitch like this in India” you know there is something wrong. Ashwin opened the bowling, and the other spinners weren’t far behind. Despite this, it was Umesh Yadav that finished with the best figures. It looks bad, but the positives are that it won’t get any better.
  7. Ashwin and Jadeja bowled well, but only finished with two wickets each. Australia showed they could be played, if you used your feet to go right forward or right back, and played straight, as Warner did against Ashwin at his most dangerous.
Everyone knew this was going to be Everest for Australia. Today will give a better indication of what the series holds. The batsmen showed promise without delivering the 400 the team needed as a first innings score. Now the bowlers must show they can restrict the Indian batting while getting the dismissals required to get through to the tail. Another fascinating day awaits.

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Revisiting The Twilight Zone: S4 E10: No Time Like the Past

Revisiting The Twilight Zone: S4 E10: No Time Like the Past

This episode which centres around the basic tenements of time travel, and the consequences built in, starts off fast and strong, and draws you in, but eventually ends with a whimper, yet another victim of trying to stretch an idea too far in the context of an episode.

I think the first fifteen minutes of the episode is as good as it gets on the Twilight Zone. A man goes back in time, trying to change the course of history in order to save those who died unnecessarily – firstly at Hiroshima, secondly in Nazi Germany, and thirdly on the Lusitania. On each occasion he is thwarted, and on his return to his own time it is the theory that ‘history cannot be changed’ that is sprouted. All well and good, and practical. He then goes back to 1881, to live his life out in a simpler time. Of course, the pall of history hangs over him even here, and he is forced to decide whether he must just allow events to take their course, or whether he is going to try and change them here as well.

These are all ideas I can get on board with – I like a good time travel science fiction story – but it peters out towards the end, which is disappointing. Still worth a watch though.

Rating: Just shoot Hitler already!! 4/5

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Revisiting The Twilight Zone: S4 E9: Printer's Devil

Revisiting The Twilight Zone: S4 E9: Printer's Devil

There is nothing more enjoyable than watching Burgess Meredith chewing up the scenery, much like he chews on his cigar. He is - was - a fabulous actor, and no matter what role he is performing, he is eminently watchable.

Here in Printer's Devil, he appears from nowhere, ostensibly to help a failing newspaper as its linesman, and hopefully to make it a success again. Of course, somewhat magically, he appears to do so, charming its editor and his secretary/girlfriend. He is of course more than he seems - and doesn't he love it!

While the episode is enjoyable, once again it is just stretched too far, and it affects the way it is played out. Even Burgess Meredith can only hold the interest so long. The acting and characters are great, but a shorter episode would have made this much better.

Rating: And the Devil take the hindmost. 4/5

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Support Me in Relay For Life.

Rightio, so here's the deal. At 11.00pm on the Saturday night, February 25, 2017, of Relay for Life at Albion Park, they have a Ms Relay competition, where below average looking male type people like myself get dolled up in a dress and a clutch purse, and walk the track looking for donations. Apparently it's hilarious, but I tend to think otherwise.

Anyway, I'll make you a deal. If you donate to the link below, and I can get $250 donated to my page, I will enter this... competition... and will have pictures taken and posted online for all to see. Fair is fair. All it takes is 25 people to donate ten bucks each. Or 12 people to donate $20.25 each. And so on.

All donations will be gratefully accepted for this cause, of a disease that takes so much from us and leaves us with so little.

Thanks in advance.

Support me in Relay For Life.

Six and Seven the Keys to Aussies Indian Chances

It’s just over a week now until the Test series between India and Australia begins, and you would be hard pressed to find a single person who honestly believes that Australia has a snowball’s chance in hell of winning a single Test let alone the series. Nothing in the recent history of the cricket of either nation leads you to believe that anything can change that. 
In the 18 months since India played in Sri Lanka, they have played only one series away from home, a 2-0 victory in the West Indies. In that time they have played 17 Tests, winning 13 of them. They have been ruthless on home wickets prepared to exploit the relative strengths of their chosen players, and the disposal of New Zealand, England and Bangladesh has now led them to be at a peak for this coming series.
Australia on the other hand has more or less confirmed its flat track bully status at home, apart from being badly shown up by a more committed South African team in November, and also being completely obliterated in Sri Lanka by a team that has barely won a match since that series on overseas wickets. Concerns? Oh yes, yes indeed.

So how does Australia combat what is to come? How can they restrict the Indian batting line up to gettable totals, as well as finding 20 wickets in doing that? And how does our batting line up combat the threat that spin and reverse swing will throw at them on wearing wickets?
The selectors have almost shown their hand, in the selection of a number of players who they would consider to be all-rounders, of which precisely zero of them have shown they can be considered as such, which again raises a dangerous problem. In the Australian season, it appeared for a while that the ‘all-rounder’ position had finally been cast aside. Mitch Marsh simply was not scoring enough runs or taking enough wickets, and was moved aside in favour of a specialist batsman at number 6 in Nic Maddinson. Unfortunately for Maddinson he was unable to take his chance (a discussion that should be raised in a whole other argument about selection decisions), and with further concerns about the workload of Australia’s fast bowlers (yet another discussion point), the selectors fell back to their old viewpoint and decided to replace the specialist batsman with a different all-rounder in Hilton Cartwright. The folly of this was shown in Sydney, when the chosen all-rounder bowled a total of four overs for the match, and then wasn’t chosen for this tour. So how did he help the ‘overburdened’ bowling cartel? It seems strange that this discussion has not been further investigated.

In this touring squad, the selectors have resurrected Mitch Marsh and Glenn Maxwell, as well as budding all round candidate Ashton Agar, and given the selectors poor poker faces, it would appear one of them will be Australia’s number 6 come next Thursday. That is the first cause for concern, because it means that our selectors will once again risk weakening the middle order batting in an attempt to give the team another bowling option. The question is, does this help or hinder the team’s cause of winning on the sub-continent? Overall, Mitch Marsh was not terrible in Sri Lanka, but he made three starts with the bat without going on to a big score (not on his own there), and the overs he bowled and the very few wickets he took did not provide as much help to the bowling attack as may have been expected. No one expects a world beater every match with bat and ball. But if you bat at 6 surely you have to average 40 with the bat to be considered worthy of the position. Marsh isn’t doing that. Agar is still a work in practice, someone who may be worthy of that title in coming years. If he is chosen it is a gamble. Stranger yet, Coach Darren Lehmann said only a couple of months ago that you couldn’t pick someone in the Test team if they hadn’t score a century in two years – referring to Glenn Maxwell. And yet, he has now chosen him. X Factor? Z Factor I’d have said. Maxwell was not asked to bowl in the recent one day series in Australia, instead Travis Head was the go-to man. What does that say about his bowling, if the captain shows no confidence in it? Does that mean he is now a batsman, and a batsman alone? What on earth is going on here?

This article though is not to disparage those that have been selected and not selected, but to put together the best team we can with what is in India. No doubt the selectors will go with Mitch Marsh. It fits with their logic at the moment.

If it was me, I’d play brother Shaun Marsh at 6. Surely the top 5 must remain as to what finished the Australian summer – and that is even with the ridiculous notion that the selectors will dump young gun Matthew Renshaw for Marsh at the top of the order having just made a century in his last Test – and slotting Shaun Marsh in at 6 gives the batting some stability on paper. It means that only four frontline bowlers will be chosen, but it is what needs to be done. If Australia cannot score enough runs for the bowlers to bowl at, then it doesn’t matter how many bowlers you take in.

The bowlers pick themselves. Starc and Hazlewood will lead from the front, with Lyon and O’Keefe doing the donkey work. Starc bowled beautifully in the final two Tests in Sri Lanka, and something similar is what he will need in India. Hazlewood showed in Australia that he is improving his reverse swing, and that will be vital in India. And while no one would show complete confidence in our current spinners, they have the chance here to show that they are up to the task and can do this at the highest level in the toughest conditions. Mirroring their counterparts in Ashwin and Jadeja would be high on their agenda.

The series could well hang on Matthew Wade. Much has been said of his keeping and batting, in comparison to every other keeper in Australia. He cannot afford to miss any chance that comes his way, be it stumping or catch. Every missed chance will not only give the batsman a reprieve, it will add even more pressure to his own psyche. His batting will also be paramount. The selectors made it a priority that the keeper must score runs when they dropped Peter Nevill. If they are consistent, they must apply the same to Wade if he cannot manage to make a serious contribution with the bat in this series. If he has a clean series with the gloves and makes runs with the lower order, he will solidify his position in the Australian team. If he cannot, then he should be shown the same exit that Nevill was.

Australia are massive underdogs. Sometimes that can work in your favour. It would be a stunning turnaround if Australia managed to win the 1st Test, but you never know. If Warner and Smith can dominate, if Khawaja and Handscomb can find their feet, if Starc cracks the top order, and if Lyon and O’Keefe can spin webs, then maybe this isn’t the dead loss most of us believe it is. Whatever happens, it will be fascinating viewing.

Friday, February 10, 2017

Revisiting The Twilight Zone: S4 E8: Miniature

Revisiting The Twilight Zone: S4 E8: Miniature

First off, I have to say that this episode was one of those in this series that felt really stretched, beyond what was necessary. What would probably have worked really well as a 24 minute episode had pieces here that were unnecessary to the story itself, and surely were only put in to make sure the episode made the requisite 48 minutes for airing in the hour-long slot that Series 4 occupied.

Apart from that, it is done well. An amazingly young Robert Duvall plays the lead, of the man who is unable to fit in to any place in his life, until one day he stumbles upon a dollhouse scene in the local museum, and he (and he alone) sees the figures inside moving as though they are alive, and he finds he falls in love with the lady of the house. This obviously causes everyone around him to believe he has lost his sanity. The subsequent scenes lead to a much more satisfying Twilight Zone twist than one may have imagined.

Rating: Boys shouldn’t play with dolls. 3.5/5

Thursday, February 9, 2017

Revisiting The Twilight Zone: S4 E7: Jess-Belle

Revisiting The Twilight Zone: S4 E7: Jess-Belle

Yeah… this just doesn’t grab me in the slightest. It was a chore just to watch it all the way through again for this process I have been doing with all the episodes. And it’s only because I just don’t see it as such as a Twilight Zone episode. 
The story of unrequited love being reversed by means of magic, black or white, is not unusual in this series, but when this is almost a straight story without any ‘diversions’ into the Twilight Zone it lacks any drama. And the fact that none of the characters are particularly likeable doesn’t help much either. I mean, do you really care if the couple get back together in the end? Do you care if the girl’s bewitching powers end up succeeding?
The answer is a resounding no.

Rating: Which witch is which? 2/5

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Revisiting The Twilight Zone: S4 E6: Death Ship

Revisiting The Twilight Zone: S4 E6: Death Ship

Back into a science fiction story with a mystery attached. I’ve probably mentioned it before, but I do like a science fiction story, especially one that has a conundrum which has to be solved.

As far as the story goes, for the most part it holds your attention and keeps you in suspense as to what is actually happening. Landing on a new planet in the search for inhabitable places for the human race to travel to, and finding your own spacecraft wrecked next to your landing site, and then finding your own dead bodies on board would be a touch unnerving. How to go about working out WHY it is there is then the difficult part.

While the thought processes of the crew throughout the episode meld together well, the ending seems to shortchange it all. Without Rod Serling’s monologue to end the episode, it would have been left completely ambiguous as to the crew’s fate. I felt that it could have been served better. Apart from that, I enjoyed it and the performances.

Rating: Just take off already! 4/5

Friday, February 3, 2017

Revisiting The Twilight Zone: S4 E5: Mute

Revisiting The Twilight Zone: S4 E5: Mute

I had my doubts that I was going to enjoy this episode from the opening, with the sets of parents seated around the table, discussing the experiment that they were going to begin with their own children, but I must admit that as the episode wore on I found myself coming to terms with it and accepting it for what it was. The concept of depriving a child all audible conversation in an attempt to increase the other telepathic abilities was interesting, and then to have this same child then thrown into the ‘real’ world and having to try and cope with that made for an interesting case study.

Did it all just fit together a bit too nicely though? The girl being found and taken home by the police chief, who with his wife had lost their only child to drowning, and then going to school, where her teacher had been taught the same telepathic ways before she had fought against it? Well yes, it was a bit convenient, but then again, this is what can happen it the depths of the Twilight Zone! 

At least in this story, everyone seems to have gotten what they want, and it is a happy ending. No twist, which is always a tad disappointing, but a nice enough story.

Rating: Read my thoughts. 3.5/5

Thursday, February 2, 2017

Revisiting The Twilight Zone: S4 E4: He's Alive

Revisiting The Twilight Zone: S4 E4: He's Alive

What better way to highlight the state of the world in regards to fascism and other such activities than to utilise the Twilight Zone, to portray evil in this way as the face of the man who oversaw the death of millions? What I like most about this episode is that Adolf Hitler was brought right out into the light (literally) as the face of evil in this tale. There is no mucking around, here he is in the flesh. But is it really the man in the flesh? Is it truly Hitler himself? Or is it just the manifestation of the evil in the heart and mind of Peter Vollmer that is Hitler, and that he is merely imagining his presence? That is how well the episode is written and produced, that this question isn’t given a definitive answer, to left open to interpretation.

Dennis Hopper – a very young Dennis Hopper – is brilliant in the lead role in this episode. He moves wonderfully well between the angry ‘dictator’ to the scared, frightened small man that lives inside that cover. He made the whole episode believable because of his efforts. Ludwig Donath as Ernst Ganz was also terrific, especially his speech within the hall while Vollmer was engrossing the masses. I also found amusement in Howard Caine’s role as one of the ‘nazi’ henchmen, given his role later on as Major Hochstetter in Hogan’s Heroes.

This is yet another of Serling’s statements on the state of the world, and the evil amongst it. Once again he nails it perfectly.

Rating: "Mr. Vollmer! We ARE immortal!" 4/5.

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Revisiting The Twilight Zone: S4 E3: Valley of the Shadow

Revisiting The Twilight Zone: S4 E3: Valley of the Shadow

Peaceful Valley. Surely nothing unusual could ever occur in a place called Peaceful Valley, could it? It’s in the middle of nowhere, it’s a small place, nothing unusual about that. Well, as per always in Twilight Zone episodes or Stephen King stories, that’s not the truth.

Actually, the way the story pans out is terrific, and it is an excellently written episode, with Serling’s wonderful ability to weave a story about the human race and how power can corrupt paramount as to how the episode moves along. It is obvious early on that aliens are somehow tied up in the story, but it is not obvious in what way they are. The characters actions are so excellently written and performed that the motivation of each is difficult to pick right up to the very end, which is what makes the best Twilight Zone episodes.

Are there anomalies? Well yes,you could pick apart parts of the story if you wanted to – and you will at its conclusion – but it is an enjoyable journey before you come to that decision. And even once you have, you will return to this episode because in the long run it is a well written tome piece that still holds up and is still relevant more than fifty years after its first airing.

Rating:  The dog really should have eaten that cat.  5/5.