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The Twilight Zone: The Monsters are Due on Maple Street

An unexplainable power failure causes paranoid suburban residents to suspect one another of being visitors from outer space.

Episode Info

Episode number: 1x22
Production Number: 173-3620
Airdate: Friday March 04th, 1960

Director: Ron Winston
Writer: Rod Serling


Guest Stars
Anne BartonAnne Barton
As Mrs. Brand
Claude AkinsClaude Akins
As Steve Brand
Jack WestonJack Weston
As Charlie
Jason JohnsonJason Johnson
As Old Man
Mary GregoryMary Gregory
As Sally
Barry AtwaterBarry Atwater
As Mr. Goodman
Ben ErwayBen Erway
As Pete Van Horn
Jan HandzlikJan Handzlik
As Tommy
Joan SudlowJoan Sudlow
As Old Woman
Leah WaggnerLeah Waggner
As Mrs. Goodman
Lyn GuildLyn Guild
As Charlie's Wife
Sheldon AllmanSheldon Allman
As First Alien
William Walsh (3)William Walsh (3)
As Second Alien
Main Cast
Rod SerlingRod Serling
As Narrator/Host


After what is believed to be a meteor flies overhead, Maple Street experiences a total power failure. Pete Van Horn checks to see what has happened. Young Tommy, a reader of science fiction books, says human looking aliens have infiltrated Maple Street. No one takes this seriously at first until Mr. Goodman's car cranks for a few seconds. Suspicion falls on him, made stronger by a neighbor's memory of seeing him looking up at the stars at night. Everyone begins to panic as the evening approaches. When a mysterious figure walks towards them in the dark, Charlie Farnsworth takes a neighbor's rifle and begins to shoot. The mysterious figure turns out to be a returning Pete Van Horn. Charlie is then accused of being the alien, then Tommy, then total madness breaks out. As various houses lights begin to flash on and off, rioting breaks out. Two nearby aliens watch these events on monitors. One alien tells the other that just by manipulating electricity, it is easy to turn neighbor against neighbor. Maple Street is just a beginning...

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Episode Notes
The aliens are wearing uniforms from the 1956 movie Forbidden Planet. The alien ship departing at the end is a shot of the ship from that movie, flipped upside down and backwards.

The ice cream wagon used in this episode was previously seen in ''Elegy.''

Claude Akins would return in "The Little People."

Jack Weston would return in "The Little People" and "The Bard."

This episode was later re-made in the UPN edition of The Twilight Zone (2003).

Anne Barton also appears in "Shadow Play."

Jason Johnson is also in "The Lateness of the Hour."

Mary Gregory is also seen in "The Lateness of the Hour" and "The Shelter."

Episode Quotes
Opening Narration
Maple Street, U.S.A. Late summer. A tree-lined little world of front porch gliders, barbecues, the laughter of children, and the bell of an ice-cream vendor. At the sound of the roar and the flash of light, it will be precisely 6:43pm on Maple Street. This is Maple Street on a late Saturday afternoon. Maple Street, in the last calm and reflective moment before the monsters came.

Charlie: Look! Look, I swear it isn't me! I swear it isn't! But I know who it is! I know who the monster is! I know who it is that doesn't belong among us! I swear I know who it is!
Don: Alright, Charlie, let's hear it.
Charlie: It''s...
Les: Well, what are you waiting for!
Don: Come on Charlie, come on!
Old Man: Who is it, Charlie? Tell us!
Charlie: It's the kid! It's Tommy! He's the one!

Woman: Well, sometimes I stay up late at night and a couple of times, well a couple of times I've come out on my porch and I've seen Les Goodman here, in the wee hours of the morning, standing up in his yard just looking up at the sky. That's right, just looking up at the sky as though he were waiting for something. As though he were looking for something.
Mr. Goodman: You know, really, this is for laughs. You know what I'm guilty of? I'm guilty of insomnia. Now what's the penalty for that? Well, you heard what I said. I said it was insomnia! I said it was insomnia! You scared frightened rabbits, you. You're sick people, do you know that? You're sick people, all of you. And you don't even know what you're starting here because let me tell you, let me tell you, you're starting something here that, that's what you should be frightened of. As God as my witness, you're letting something begin here that's a nightmare!

Mrs. Farnsworth: It just doesn't seem right keeping a watch on them. Why, they're our neighbors. We've known the Goodman's ever since they came here. We've been good friends.
Charlie: That don't prove a thing. Any guy who'd spend his time looking up at the sky early in the morning, there's something wrong with that kind of a person. Something that ain't legitimate. Under normal circumstances we'd let it go by but these aren't normal circumstances. Look at that street. Nothing but candles. It's like going back into the dark ages or something.

Mrs. Brand: Steve, please! It's just a hand radio set, that's all. I bought the book for him myself. It's just a ham radio set. A lot of people have them. I'll show it to you. It's down in the basement.
Steve Brand: No, no, we won't show them anything. If they want to look inside our house, let them get a search warrant.
Charlie: Look, buddy, you can't afford to...
Steve Brand: Now, Charlie, don't you tell me what I can afford, and stop telling me who's dangerous and who isn't and who's safe and who's a menace. And you with him too, all of you! You're all standing out here all set to crucify somebody! You're all set to find a scapegoat! You are all desperate to point some kind of a finger at a neighbor! Well, believe me friends, the only thing that's gonna happen is that we're gonna eat each other up alive!

First Alien: Understand the procedure now? Just stop a few of their machines and radios and telephones and lawn mowers, throw them into darkness for a few hours, and then sit back and watch the pattern.
Second Alien: And this pattern is always the same?
First Alien: With few variations. They pick the most dangerous enemy they can find, and it's themselves. All we need do is sit back and watch.
Second Alien: Then I take it this place, this Maple Street, is not unique?
First Alien: By no means. Their world is full of Maple Streets. And we'll go from one to the other and let them destroy themselves, one to the other, one to the other, one to the other…

Closing Narration
The tools of conquest do not necessarily come with bombs and explosions and fallout. There are weapons that are simply thoughts, attitudes, prejudices, to be found only in the minds of men. For the record, prejudices can kill and suspicion can destroy, and a thoughtless, frightened search for a scapegoat has a fallout all of its own - for the children, and the children yet unborn. And the pity of it is that these things cannot be confined to the Twilight Zone.

Cultural References
A shortened script is published in a 7th grade Holt Rinhart and Winston textbook.

Other Episode Crew

CreatorRod Serling
Executive ProducerRod Serling
ProducerBuck Houghton
EditorBill Mosher
CastingMillie Gusse
MusicRene Garriguenc  |  Lud Gluskin
Director of PhotographyGeorge T. Clemens
Art DirectorGeorge W. Davis  |  William Ferrari  |  Eddie Imazu
Production ManagerRalph Nelson
Sound EditorJean Valentino  |  Franklin Milton
Main Title ThemeMarius Constant
Sound Effects EditorVan Allen James
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