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. ..Read the full recap
Burgess Meredith was also in "Time Enough at Last," "Mr. Dingle, the Strong" and "The Obsolete Man." He is best known for his roles as the Penguin in Batman, and as the trainer in Rocky I & II.
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.
Narrator: 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.
Narrator: 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.
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.