|37-year old producer, host, primary writer and narrator Rod Serling was beginning to feel exhausted by this point of the series. He had penned 73% of the total scripts for the first two seasons. Montgomery Pittman and Earl Hamner Jr. joined in with new scripts and fresh ideas during this season, and along with Richard Matheson and Charles Beaumont's output and a few teleplays from George Clayton Johnson, Serling's load was lightened. Although it was this season in which Rod wrote some of his most widely regarded episodes, "It's a Good Life," "To Serve Man," and "Five Characters in Search of an Exit." |
The Zone would receive two Emmy nominations for the season, one for cinematography and the other for art design, yet lost both. They did pick up the Hugo Award for Best Dramatic Presentation, which was the first time a show won that award three straight years. Unfortunately, the Zone couldn't find a sponsor in time to get them on the Fall schedule and were replaced by a new hour-long situation comedy called Fair Exchange. Feeling they had been canceled, Rod Serling accepted a job teaching at his alma mater, Antioch College, and producer Buck Houghton left the series for a position at Four Star Productions. Eventually the series was renewed and Rod came back, yet in a lesser position as executive producer.