Blu-ray: Must Own
5 Stars out of 5
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3rd Party $40.44
Release Date: November 16th, 2010
Movie Release Year: 1960
Release Country: United States
COLLAPSE INFO -

The Twilight Zone: Season 2 (1960)

Review Date November 24th, 2010 by
Overview - The complete second season of Rod Serling's classic, groundbreaking series exploring the fantastic and the frightening.
OVERALL
Must Own
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  • TECH SPECS & RELEASE DETAILS
    Technical Specs: 4-Disc Set
    Video Resolution/Codec: 1080p and 1080i/MPEG-4 AVC
    Length:725
    Release Country:United States
    Aspect Ratio(s):1.33:1
    English Descriptive Audio: English: LPCM Mono
    Subtitles/Captions: English SDH
    Special Features: 22 Isolated Music Scores
    7 Actor Audio Commentaries
    Marc Zicree Interviews
    Rod Serling's Introductions to Next Week's Episode
    Movie Studio: Image Entertainment
    Release Date: November 16th, 2010

Story Review Storyline: Our Reviewer's Take

5 Stars out of 5

Loneliness is the prevailing theme in the second season of 'The Twilight Zone.' Episodes like "King Nine Will Not Return," "The Obsolete Man," and "Nervous Man in a Four Dollar Room" all deal with some feeling of loneliness or neglect. Captain James Embry in "King Nine Will Not Return" ends up in familiar 'Twilight Zone' territory when he finds himself stranded in the middle of the desert with his World War II bomber. Only his crew is gone, and he's beginning to have hallucinations. "The Obsolete Man" tells the story of a man who is lost in a utopian society that rivals the evils of creativity-squashing communism. "Nervous Man in a Four Dollar Room" deals with a wannabe gangster who doesn't have the guts to perform his next criminal act. He's supposed to kill someone, and he doesn't know if he can. Alone in a cheap hotel room he tries to convince himself to do the job.

There are quite a few one-man-shows in this season, but isn't that what 'The Twilight Zone' is all about? Episodes starring only one person allow us to delve deep into their psyche. See what makes them tick. Experience what they are experiencing. To this day, no show has been able to explore human emotions and fears like 'The Twilight Zone.' Rod Serling definitely knew how to string us along through a story inside someone's mind, learning along the way about humanity and how hard being human can be.

By the second season 'The Twilight Zone' had amassed a healthy audience and the show was off and running. It covered so many different angles and plots it's impossible to discuss them all now. From pawn store genies, to time travel, to bags of battles of the mind. One week the show would delve into the supernatural, and then the next week it would deal with a strong human emotion like loneliness or love.

There's just something about these taut half-hour episodes that suck you in and don't let you go until the end. In a day where serial dramas reign supreme on TV and we watch the same characters doing the same things over and over for years, it's refreshing to revisit a time where each episode encapsulated a beginning, middle, and end. New characters were introduced each week, and with Serling's brilliant writing we were able to fall in love before our fleeting 30 minutes with them were up. By season two, 'The Twilight Zone' had clearly become one of the best shows to ever grace the small screen, before or since. After the fantastic job they did with season one, let's all give Image Entertainment a standing ovation for releasing another stellar season of this iconic series.

The Blu-ray: Vital Disc Stats

'Twilight Zone: Season 2' Comes packed in a nice oversized keepcase. With a slickly designed cardboard slipcover that looks great on the shelf next to season one. The set comes complete with 4 50GB Blu-ray discs all packed into the keepcase with flipper trays so the discs are housed back to back. Each episode features Rod Serling's preview for the episode that will air the next week.

  • TECH SPECS & RELEASE DETAILS
    Technical Specs:
    4-Disc Set
    Video Resolution/Codec:
    1080p and 1080i/MPEG-4 AVC
    Length:725
    Release Country:United States
    Aspect Ratio(s):
    1.33:1
    Audio Formats:
    English: LPCM Mono
    Subtitles/Captions:
    English SDH
    Special Features:
    22 Isolated Music Scores
    7 Actor Audio Commentaries
    Marc Zicree Interviews
    Rod Serling's Introductions to Next Week's Episode
    Movie Studio: Image Entertainment
    Release Date: November 16th, 2010

Video Review

4 Stars out of 5

Most of the second season was shot on 35mm film. For this transfer, just like the first season, they went back to the original 35mm negatives and created all new transfers. However, there is one caveat. Six of the episodes in this season were shot on videotape ("Static," "The Lateness of the Hour," "The Whole Truth," "The Night of the Meek," "Long Distance Call," and "Twenty Two"). These episodes have a very notable difference in overall look and feel compared to the other episodes filmed with 35mm film. The videotape episodes are presented in 1080i while the rest of the set is presented in 1080p.

First let's talk about the episodes that were filmed on 35mm film. Just like the first season, they look absolutely spectacular. Detail is top-notch. Take for example the wallpaper in the hotel room of "Nervous Man in a Four Dollar Room." That intricate pattern most likely was hardly visible until now. Here each tiny aspect of the repeating pattern can be seen clearly. Facial detail such as fine hairs and even pores are visible during the extreme closeups that populate the entire season. Errant noise pops up frequently, but this is to be expected from a show this old. Still, the black and white image is a striking reminder of exactly how much HD and Blu-ray can improve an older image.. Blacks are deep and provide an inky depth to the picture, while the varying shades of gray pop with clarity.

As is expected, the episodes shot on videotape don't fair nearly as well. They appear blurry compared to the 35mm episodes. Detail is obscured and not nearly as fine. The look and feel of them just doesn't measure up. Grays and blacks aren't nearly as revealing. Overall, it's almost as if you picked up a different set all together when you watch these episodes. Here's the deal though. This isn't Image's fault. It's no one's fault really, and Image has done as good of a job as they could to get the picture to look as clean and clear as possible. Their restoration of the videotaped episodes looks to have had just as much care put into them as the 35mm episodes. It's just that the source material didn't provide much in the way of fine detail to begin with. Artifacts appear frequently in the videotaped episodes. Aliasing, at times, is pretty bad. In "Static" as the camera opens on the characters sitting in their living room, the image breaks apart and shudders as the image moves from left to right. All the videotaped episodes have the same feeling and look of "Fairy Tale Theater" episodes, like they were filmed for live TV.

While 'The Twilight Zone' season two isn't a stunning piece of clarity throughout the season, I'm confident that this is the best looking presentation of this season we'll get.

Audio Review

4 Stars out of 5

Just like the first season, you can pick from two sound options for each episode. You can choose the original mono audio, which is how the episode originally sounded when it aired, or you can pick the restored mono audio that has been digitally restored from the original magnetic tapes. Having the choice of the two is part of the fun. Die hard fans and audiophiles will want to hear exactly what the show sounded like during its original broadcast, but may want to switch over every now and then to a wonderfully restored soundfield created just for this Blu-ray set. Just so you know, the default for each episode is the restored audio option, if you want to listen to the original audio you have to select it in the menu.

The newly restored Linear PCM mono audio has a clean, precise sound to it. Dialogue is always intelligible and never crackles or hisses even during times where characters are yelling and screaming. The eerie soundtrack produced for each of the episodes never drowns out the dialogue. Overall the restored audio is crisp and clear. It's a perfect way to experience each episode.

The original audio on the other hand is a lot less clear and suffers from hissing and crackling here and there. Let's be honest though, if you're listening to the original audio that's exactly how you want to hear the show. You want the nitty gritty of it all, and you'll get it with this option. Having both options gives you the best of both worlds.

Special Features

3 Stars out of 5

It's a pretty safe bet to say you haven't even made it through the mountain of special features on season one. Image doesn't care about that though, because once you're finally done with season one, you'll have a new mountain of features to climb with season two. From a variety of audio commentaries to the always wonderful 'Twilight Zone' Radio Dramas, this season has just as many quality features as season one.

Disc 1

Episode 37: "King Nine Will Not Return"

  • Zircee Interview: Buzz Kulik [1978] (HD, 25 min.) - Buzz Kulik, the director for "King Nine Will Not Return" gives an interview with 'Twilight Zone' specialist Marc Zircee. They talk about filming the show on location on the deserted salt flats. The interview plays out in audio only format as the episode runs. Sort of like a commentary, only the two subjects aren't actually watching the episode while they're talking.
  • Isolated Music Score by Fred Steiner - Watch the episode with just the music isolated. This is located on quite a few of the episodes. It adds for a creepy and fun way to view the episode, giving center stage to the music that was produced for the show.
  • Sponsor Billboards (HD, 30 sec.) - Some great coffee advertisements put to 'Twilight Zone' music. Never knew coffee could be so unsettling.

Episode 38: "The Man in the Bottle"

  • Isolated Score - Another isolated score. I like how the music in this one changes from happy-go-lucky to sinister fairly fast.
  • Sponsor Billboards (HD, 30 sec.) - Some old Colgate commercials as they sponsored the show. Also Wildroot Cream Oil.

Episode 39: "Nervous Man in a Four Dollar Room"

  • Zircee Interview: Douglas Heyes [1978] (HD, 25 min.) - Zircee interviews Douglas Heyes, the director of this episode. Heyes directed quite a few famous 'Twilight Zone' episodes. Heyes talks extensively about the special effects used in the episode and how they used rear projection throughout the episode. Zircee gets pretty annoying because most of his contribution seems to be "Mmm hmmm…" sounds.
  • Isolated Score by Jerry Goldsmith - Another great isolated score presented here.
  • Sponsor Billboards (HD, 30 sec.) - More commercials for Sanka Coffee.

Episode 40: "A Thing About Machines"

  • Isolated Score - Another isolated music score for you to sit back and enjoy.
  • Sponsor Billboards (HD, 30 sec.) - More Sanka Roast Coffee commercials.

Episode 41: "The Howling Man"

  • Zicree Interview: Douglas Heyes [1978] (HD, 26 min.) - Heyes discusses 'The Howling Man' with famed director Douglas Heyes. More "Mmm..Hmmm..."s from Zicree in the background. Most of the time they could have just cut him out of the interview. It gets pretty annoying after a while. Just let Heyes talk man.
  • Sponsor Billboards (HD, 30 sec.) - More Colgate commercials.

Episode 42: "Eye of the Beholder"

  • Audio Commentary by Donna Douglas () - The starring actress in this episode gives her views on it. This is a very sparse commentary, and it seems that Donna Douglas hasn't ever done a commentary before. There's long pauses between her comments and when she does talk she only offers a few anecdotes here and there.
  • Zicree Interview: Maxine Stuart/Douglas Heyes [1978] (HD, 26 min.) - Zicree talks to both Maxine Stuart and Douglas Heyes about this famous episode. Zicree isn't much of an interviewer. His voice is light and this interview is kind of hard to hear.
  • Isolated Score by Bernard Herrmann - After listening to the commentary about this score, you might want to take the time to listen to this isolated score. It will mean much more are you hear the two historians talk extensively about it.
  • Alternate End Title (HD, 40 sec.) - Just an alternate ending title screen and credits than the one you see during the episode.
  • Rare Color Photos (SD, 15 sec.) - A few blurry stills of the grotesque looking pig faces. They scroll through three of them by itself.
  • Sponsor Billboards (HD, 30 sec.) - Yummy Sanka Coffee commercials.

Episode 43: "Nick of Time"

  • Sponsor Billboards (HD, 30 sec.) - Commercials for Halo shampoo.

Disc 2

Episode 44: "The Lateness of the Hour"

  • Original Production Slate (HD, 9 sec.) - Get a look at a 'Twilight Zone' production slate. One of the rare behind-the-scenes pieces of footage from the show that are found on these sets.
  • Sponsor Billboard (HD, 15 sec.) - A commercial for Colgate's Florient air deodorant.

Episode 45: "The Trouble with Templeton"

  • Zicree Interview: Buzz Kulik [1978] (HD, 26 min.) - Director Buzz Kulik talks about how "The Trouble with Templeton" was his favorite piece of directing for his whole career. There's a lot of background noise going on in this one. Like they're folding paper while they're talking.
  • Isolated Score by Jeff Alexander - Another isolated score for all you music lovers.
  • Sponsor Billboards (HD, 30 sec.) - Sanka Coffee commercials.

Episode 46: "A Most Unusual Camera"

  • Isolated Score - The music score of the episode is isolated for your listening pleasure.
  • Sponsor Billboards (HD, 30 sec.) - Halo shampoo commercials.

Episode 47: "The Night of the Meek"

  • Original Production Slate (HD, 9 sec.) - Another shot behind-the-scenes of one of the slates used to introduce the scene.

Episode 48: "Dust"

  • Zicree Interview: Douglas Heyes [1978] (HD, 26 min.) - Zicree and Heyes talk about the episode "Dust." Zicree isn't as annoying here, but the two start off by just discussing personal matters rather than information about the episode itself. Soon they level off and talk about the episode, but this is one of the more dry and uneventful interviews here.
  • Isolated Score by Jerry Goldsmith - More music for you isolated music fans out there.
  • Sponsor Billboards (HD, 30 sec.) - Sanka Coffee commercials.

Episode 49: "Back There"

  • Isolated Score by Jerry Goldsmith - Another Goldsmith isolated score for you.
  • Sponsor Billboards (HD, 30 sec.) - Wildroot Cream Oil commercial. Wish I could get some of that for my hair. Also a toothpaste commercial from Colgate.

Episode 50: "The Whole Truth"

  • Original Production Slate (HD, 16 sec.) - Another brief behind the scenes view of the show and the slates used.

Disc 3

Episode 51: "The Invaders"

  • Zicree Interview: Douglas Heyes [1978] (HD, 26 min.) - Heyes talks about his role on this famous episode of 'The Twilight Zone.' He talks about how hard it was to create the illusion of height in this episode. He talks about creating the props for the episode and how they had to keep in mind that they couldn't use objects that look like they came from Earth.
  • Isolated Score by Jerry Goldsmith - Another isolated score that is given new meaning after you listen to Burlingame discuss it in his commentary.
  • Sponsor Billboards (HD, 30 sec.) - Halo shampoo commercial.

Episode 52: "A Penny for Your Thoughts"

  • Zicree Interview: George Clayton Johnson [1978] (HD, 26 min.) - This is a hard interview to hear. Lots of static comes along with it. Zicree does his thing by annoying us in the background with his "Mmmm…Hmmm…"s. Johnson talks about the "hokey" nature of the episodes and how the show was an abstraction of life.
  • Isolated Score - Another isolated score for music fans.
  • Sponsor Billboards (HD, 30 sec.) - Sanka Coffee commercials.

Episode 53: "Twenty Two"

  • Isolated Score - Isolated music from the episode.
  • Original Production Slate (HD, 14 sec.) - More behind the scenes footage.
  • Sponsor Billboard (HD, 16 sec.) - Halo shampoo commercial.

Episode 54: "The Odyssey of Flight 33"

  • Zicree Interview: Robert Serling [1978] (HD, 26 min.) - Lots of background noise here too. Even a dog that continuously barks in the background. Serling discusses the behind-the-scenes nature of the show and the business side of it. He also provides some anecdotal stories about his brother.
  • Isolated Score - The musical score on this episode is also isolated for those who want to give it a listen.
  • Sponsor Billboards (HD, 30 sec.) - Halo shampoo commercial.

Episode 55: "Mr. Dingle the Strong"

  • Audio Commentary by Don Rickles (SD, 3 min.) - Actor Don Rickles offers up a very, very short commentary here, and for some reason it's accompanied by standard definition video.
  • Isolated Score () - Another isolated score for music fans.
  • Sponsor Billboards (HD, 35 sec.) - Sanka Coffee commercials.

Episode 56: "Static"

  • Zicree Interview: Buzz Kulick [1978] (HD, 25 min.) - Zicree starts off by talking about how this episode was one of the other episodes that was filmed on tape rather than on film. Kulick talks about how filming with video tape was much easier than film.
  • Isolated Score - Listen to the isolated music of this episode.
  • Original Production Slate (HD, 13 sec.) - Another behind-the-scenes shot of the production slate before they shoot the scene.

Episode 57: "The Prime Mover"

  • Isolated Score - Listen to the isolated score of "The Prime Mover."
  • Sponsor Billboard (HD, 16 sec.) - Halo shampoo commercial.

Episode 58: "Long Distance Call"

  • Original Production Slate (HD, 15 sec.) - Another scene of the production slate used on set.

Disc 4

Episode 59: "A Hundred Yards Over the Rim"

  • Audio Commentary by Cliff Robertson - Actor Cliff Robertson, who plays the leader of the wagon train in the episode, provides this commentary. Like many of the actor/actress oriented commentaries this one is very sparse. Robertson doesn't offer much in the way of information. He's more content watching the episode and speaking up every now and then about his life.
  • Zircee Interview: Buzz Kulik [1978] (HD, 26 min.) - Another hard to hear interview with tons of stuff going on in the background. Buzz talks about working with Cliff Robertson and how much he loved working with professional actors.
  • Isolated Score by Fred Steiner - The score by Fred Steiner has been isolated for your listening pleasure.
  • Sponsor Billboard (HD, 16 sec.) - Oasis filter cigarettes commercial. Really weird seeing a commercial for cigarettes.

Episode 60: "The Rip Van Winkle Caper"

  • Isolated Score - Another isolated score for you.
  • Sponsor Billboard (HD, 16 sec.) - Oasis cigarettes commercial.

Episode 61: "The Silence"

  • Sponsor Billboard (HD, 17 sec.) - Colgate dental cream toothpaste commercial.

Episode 62: "Shadow Play"

  • Audio Commentary by Dennis Weaver - Actor Dennis Weaver talks about his experience on 'The Twilight Zone.' He, like many of the actors, has many dead spots. Weaver's got a little bit more of a sense of humor which lightens up the mood, but it's still very dry and sparse.
  • Isolated Score - Isolated music for "Shadow Play" is included.
  • Sponsor Billboards (HD, 30 sec.) - Oasis cigarettes commercial.

Episode 63: "The Mind and the Matter"

  • Audio Commentary by Shelley Berman - Shelley Berman, who plays Mr. Archibald Beechcroft, is just as dry and sparse with his commentary as the other commentators who are actors are. He talks about how much he loved 'The Twilight Zone,' and how happy he was to be on the show when Serling invited him.
  • Isolated Score - Another isolated score for music fans.
  • Sponsor Billboards (HD, 30 sec.) - Wildroot Cream Oil commercial along with a Colgate toothpaste commercial.

Episode 64: "Will the Real Martian Please Stand Up?"

  • Isolated Score - More music for all of you.
  • Sponsor Billboards (HD, 35 sec.) - Colgate commercials.

Episode 65: "The Obsolete Man"

  • Isolated Score - "The Obsolete Man"s isolated score is provided.
  • Sponsor Billboards (HD, 30 sec.) - Smooth Oasis cigarette commercials.

Final Thoughts

Kudos to Image Entertainment on yet another stellar release of this iconic television series. Bravo to them for providing another extensive, and exhaustive special features section that has more than enough Blu-ray exclusives to require DVD owners to upgrade to these sets. 'The Twilight Zone' shines on Blu-ray. It did in its first season, and here the second season looks just as good. Granted the six episodes on videotape provide some ugly anomalies in what is otherwise a damn good looking set. The videotaped episodes are dealt with as best as possible, and they come out looking reasonably good. The episodes that were filmed on film, however, look tremendous. The restored audio sounds fantastic, but if you're a purest then the original audio tracks are also provided. This set has everything a 'Twilight Zone' fan would want for a special Blu-ray release of the show. Another must own from Image Entertainment.

Buy Now
3rd Party $40.44
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  • TECH SPECS & RELEASE DETAILS
    Technical Specs:
    4-Disc Set
    Video Resolution/Codec:
    1080p and 1080i/MPEG-4 AVC
    Length:725
    Release Country:United States
    Aspect Ratio(s):
    1.33:1
    Audio Formats:
    English: LPCM Mono
    Subtitles/Captions:
    English SDH
    Special Features:
    22 Isolated Music Scores
    7 Actor Audio Commentaries
    Marc Zicree Interviews
    Rod Serling's Introductions to Next Week's Episode
    Movie Studio: Image Entertainment
    Release Date: November 16th, 2010