Rod Serling Made A Big Mistake In The Twilight Zone’s Opening Narration

The first episode of “The Twilight Zone” was called “Where Is Everybody?” (October 2, 1959) and it followed an amnesiac man named Mike (Earl Holliman) as he wanders down a road to a small town. Although the lights are on, there are cars parked around town, and the restaurants are fully stocked, there are no people. One of the cars, in a creepy twist, features a mannequin. The solitude and his lack of memory begin to drive Mike mad. Where is everybody? Is this Hell? The episode began with the usual title sequence, wherein Rod Serling gave the following narration over Marius Constant’s famous theme music: 

“There is a sixth dimension beyond that which is known to man. It is a dimension as vast as space and as timeless as infinity. It is the middle ground between light and shadow, between science and superstition, and it lies between the pit of man’s fears and the summit of his knowledge. This is the dimension of imagination. It is an area which we call the Twilight Zone.”

According to “Dimensions,” however, that narration had to be changed when an executive at CBS pointed out to Serling that he skipped over a fifth dimension straight to the sixth. The Twilight Zone was supposed to be just one dimension removed from our own, not two. When the executive pointed this out to Serling, he naively responded with, “Aren’t there five?” No, Mr. Serling, there are only four. The segment was re-recorded, and all subsequent narrations made reference to the fifth dimension. 

Incidentally, that specific recording was only used for “Where Is Everybody?” and “A Passage for Trumpet” (May 20, 1960), which aired later in the show’s first season.  

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