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The Twilight Zone: Printer's Devil

A wily old man, hired by a bankrupt newspaper editor, has the knack of predicting headline stories and claims to be the Devil.

Episode Info  

Episode number: 4x9
Production Number: 4864
Airdate: Thursday February 28th, 1963

Special Guest Stars
Burgess MeredithBurgess Meredith
As Mr. Smith

Guest Stars
Charles P. ThompsonCharles P. Thompson
As Andy Praskins
Doris KemperDoris Kemper
As Landlady
Pat CrowleyPat Crowley
As Jackie Benson
Ray TealRay Teal
As Mr. Franklin
Robert SterlingRobert Sterling
As Douglas Winter
Main Cast
Rod SerlingRod Serling
As Narrator/Host


Douglas Winter's newspaper, The Courier, has fallen into financial trouble. A Mr. Smith appears, and after talking with Douglas, decides to help pay off the debts, and run the linotype machine. This Mr. Smith just happens to be The Devil, and offers Winter's a contract that would guarantee a successful newspaper in exchange for his soul. Afraid of losing Mr. Smith's services, he reluctantly agrees. Mr. Smith then starts printing up news and then makes the story come true. He creates all sorts of disasters, and Douglas asks him to stop. Mr. Smith makes him a new offer, he will stop as long as Winters kills himself. He agrees, but then gets a brilliant idea. He sets the type to print out a story stating the devils contract is voided, and that Mr. Smith has been banished from the Earth. He decides to run a legitimate newspaper, and then destroys the linotype machine. ..

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Episode Notes
This episode is based on the short story "The Devil, You Say?" by Charles Beaumont. The story was first published in Amazing Stories, January, 1951.

Episode Quotes
Opening Narration
Take away a man's dream, fill him with whiskey and despair, send him back to a lonely bridge, let him stand there all by himself looking down at the black water, and try to imagine the thoughts that are in his mind. You can't, I can't. But there's someone who can - and that someone is seated next to Douglas Winter right now. The car is headed back toward town, but its real destination is the Twilight Zone.

Closing Narration
Exit the infernal machine, and with it his satanic majesty, Lucifer, prince of darkness - otherwise known as Mr. Smith. He's gone, but not for good; that wouldn't be like him - he's gone for bad. And he might be back, with another ticket to - the Twilight Zone.

Cultural References
Title: The title, "Printer's Devil" is a reference made in the printing profession for an apprentice whose tasks would be to perform menial tasks, such as mixing inks and retrieving type.

Other Episode Crew

CreatorRod Serling
Executive ProducerRod Serling
ProducerHerbert Hirschman
Associate ProducerMurray Golden
EditorRichard W. Farrell
Set DecoratorHenry Grace  |  Don Greenwood, Jr.
Director of PhotographyGeorge T. Clemens
Art DirectorJohn J. Thompson  |  George W. Davis
Production ManagerRalph Nelson
Sound EditorFranklin Milton  |  Joe Edmondson
Main Title ThemeMarius Constant
Assistant DirectorJohn D. Bloss
Assistant To The DirectorJohn Conwell
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