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The Twilight Zone: The Arrival

An airplane arrives totally empty of passengers and crew. The investigating officer determines that the plane is a collective figment of their imagination and takes extreme measures to prove so.

Episode Info  

Episode number: 3x2
Production Number: 4814
Airdate: Friday September 22nd, 1961

Director: Boris Sagal
Writer: Rod Serling

Guest Stars
Harold StoneHarold Stone
As Grant Sheckly

Co-Guest Stars
Fredd WayneFredd Wayne
As Paul Malloy
Noah KeenNoah Keen
As Bengston
Bing RussellBing Russell
As George Cousins
Jim BolesJim Boles
As Dispatcher
Robert KarnesRobert Karnes
As Mr. Robbins

Robert BrubakerRobert Brubaker
As Tower Operator
Main Cast
Rod SerlingRod Serling
As Narrator/Host


Airport security guards have roped off a DC-3 airplane, Flight 107, inside of a hanger. FAA Inspector Grant Sheckly arrives to investigate it. Earlier, the DC-3 had landed but no one comes out. The airport crew search the airplane and find no crew, no passengers, and no luggage. Sheckly meets with the airport staff, led by Bengston, and holds a preliminary meeting. Everyone confirms the story and the dispatcher from Buffalo, where the DC-3 departed, has a form confirming that the pilot and co-pilot filed a flight plan. Steckly thinks their names sound vaguely familiar. He meets with Paul Malloy, the airport's PR representative, and insists that he's solved every mystery in his 22-year career. Everyone insists the airplane couldn't have landed on its own...

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Episode Notes
Bing Russell is the father of Kurt.

In 1952, Harold J. Stone began the first of many TV-series gigs when he replaced Philip Loeb as Jake on The Goldbergs.

Bing Russell was also in "Ring-A-Ding Girl."

Fredd Wayne also appeared in "Twenty-Two."

Noah Keen also appeared in "The Trade-Ins."

Jim Boles is also in "Jess-Belle."

Another Twilight Zone moment has the lead character, Sheckley, walking into the plane's propeller to prove the airplane is just in his imagination. In 1981, Boris Sagal, director of this episode, would accidentally walk into a helicopter propeller.

Episode Quotes
Opening Narration
This object, should any of you have lived underground for the better parts of your lives and never had occasion to look toward the sky, is an airplane, its official designation a DC-3. We offer this rather obvious comment because this particular airplane, the one you're looking at, is a freak. Now, most airplanes take off and land as per scheduled. On rare occasions they crash. But all airplanes can be counted on doing one or the other. Now, yesterday morning this particular airplane ceased to be just a commercial carrier. As of its arrival it became an enigma, a seven-ton puzzle made out of aluminum, steel, wire and a few thousand other component parts, none of which add up to the right thing. In just a moment, we're going to show you the tail end of its history. We're going to give you ninety percent of the jigsaw pieces and you and Mr. Sheckly here of the Federal Aviation Agency will assume the problem of putting them together along with finding the missing pieces. This we offer as an evening's hobby, a little extracurricular diversion which is really the national pastime in the Twilight Zone.

Closing Narration
Picture of a man with an Achilles' heel, a mystery that landed in his life and then turned into a heavy weight, dragged across the years to ultimately take the form of an illusion. Now, that's the clinical answer that they put on the tag as they take him away. But if you choose to think that the explanation has to do with an airborne Flying Dutchman, a ghost ship on a fog-enshrouded night on a flight that never ends, then you're doing your business in an old stand in the Twilight Zone.

Other Episode Crew

CreatorRod Serling
Executive ProducerRod Serling
ProducerBuck Houghton
Set DecoratorH. Web Arrowsmith
Director of PhotographyGeorge T. Clemens
Art DirectorGeorge W. Davis  |  Philip Barber
Production ManagerRalph Nelson
Sound EditorFranklin Milton
Main Title ThemeMarius Constant
SoundWilliam Edmondson
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