What’s your favorite holiday? Some people say Christmas, while others might say Thanksgiving or Valentine’s Day. But for me, the best holiday is New Years’. Not because I go out partying or anything. I can drink heavily any day of the year, especially after a year like 2017. No, New Years’ is fantastic for one glorious reason: The SyFy Twilight Zone marathon.
The Twilight Zone has been one of my favorite TV shows ever since I first encountered it as a kid on the Sci-Fi Channel back in the 1990s. And I never get tired of re-watching it.
Below we have the complete schedule for this year’s Twilight Zone marathon, complete with links if you want to cheat and watch on your own time via Netflix or Amazon streaming. And if you’ve never seen the show, I can’t recommend it highly enough. Tune in for just a couple of episodes and you’ll be hooked instantly.
A lot of shows these days get compared to the greatness of The Twilight Zone, and while the comparison is sometimes apt, there are too many times when it doesn’t make any sense. It’s not fair to compare something to The Twilight Zone just because something strange or supernatural happens. The thing that binds every Twilight Zone episode is the theme of morality.
Every episode is grounded by questions of morality and force us to confront our own definitions of right and wrong. I believe that every person’s morality is fundamentally defined by what we do when there are no external negative consequences for our actions. The best episodes of the Twilight Zone start with that premise and then force the protagonist to finally stare those consequences in the face.
Happy New Year, and enjoy the marathon, however you watch it this season.
The one where there’s this dude that howls to be let out of his prison cell but you probably shouldn’t let him out of his prison cell.
The one where a test pilot doesn’t remember where he is and has no idea why the town he’s wandering is vacant.
The one where a US Navy crew from the 1960s think they might have found a sunken submarine from World War II.
The one where a woman waiting for a bus starts seeing her doppelganger at the bus station but she’s not sure what to do about it.
The one where a man wakes up at his own funeral which is super confusing because everybody thought he was dead.
The one where a theater critic buys a player piano and the theater critic has a creepy beard so you can tell he’s a bad dude.
The one where TV sponsors literally rewrite Shakespeare and Rod Serling takes some not so subtle jabs at both hack TV writers and the advertisers who want to dictate what he gets to put on the air.
The one where criminals steal a bunch of gold and then put themselves in suspended animation so that they can spend their gold in the future and give it to Ron Paul 2012.
The one where a man sells his soul to the devil in exchange for an incredibly long life which will not backfire on him at all.
The one where a guy keeps having a nightmare that he’s on Death Row.
The one where a librarian in a futuristic totalitarian dystopia goes on trial.
The one where a guy who looks an awful lot like Fidel Castro discovers that a magic mirror can tell him where his next assassination attempt might be coming from.
The one where two astronauts land on a planet of tiny people and one astronaut decides to rule them as a god which goes about as well as you’d expect.
The one where a ruthless white American soldier finds himself on the other side near the end of World War II.
The one where a reporter stumbles upon a small town where everybody is acting weird and they’ve all got magic healing and duplicating technology that they won’t share with the outside world.
The one where a compulsive gambler goes gambling with a friend who can change things with his mind.
The one where an accidental time traveler has an opportunity to stop the Lincoln assassination.
The one where a woman is horrified by her father’s humanoid robot servants, but it’s all cool because you get to hear Rod Serling pronounce “robot” all funny like they did in the 1960s.
The one where a gambler becomes obsessed with a particular slot machine.
The one where the sun never sets and the heat is unbelievably oppressive but there’s a twist and I bet you can’t guess what it is.
The one where a plane lands at an airport without any pilots, passengers or crew.
The one where an old lawman visits a grave of an old baddie but really wishes he hadn’t.
The one that clearly inspired Saw but without all the super gross stuff, but it does have a creepy clown so there’s that.
The one where an elderly woman worries that Robert Redford might be Death, finally coming for her.
The one where a prisoner living on an asteroid falls in love with a robot woman.
The one where two kids can access a magical land through a portal in the bottom of their swimming pool.
The one where a guy wakes up but no one — not even his wife — seems to know who he is.
The one where a pathological liar gets abducted by aliens who think he’s the smartest man on Earth.
The one where a couple wakes up in a strange town and try to figure out what they did last night after partying too hard.
The one where children are again shown to be history’s greatest monsters.
The one where a man has a watch that can stop time.
The one where a robot grandmother is written by Ray Bradbury.
The one where a rural woman is terrorized by alien invaders that definitely aren’t from Earth.
The one where everybody turns on each other when mysterious things happen and it’s probably aliens or Communists or something.
The one where a ventriloquist thinks his dummy is alive which seems to be a recurring theme in the Twilight Zone.
The one where Captain Kirk starts seeing something on the wing of a plane that’s probably just a teddy bear that’s come to life oh god why is he shooting at it oh god why.
The one where greedy people must wear ugly masks for a night to claim their inheritance.
The one where an evil old business tycoon sells his soul to go back in time, return to his hometown, and build his empire all over again, but nothing works out quite the way he thought.
The one where a woman tries to return something to a department store but discovers a floor where the mannequins are creepier than usual.
The one where a man from olden times leaves his wagon train to go find help for his son but he slips into the future and what he finds is that future people aren’t so bad after all.
The one where a really chatty guy takes a bet that he can refrain from talking for a full year which doesn’t backfire at all.
The one where a possible alien comes bearing a gift but the people don’t want it.
The one where a man blows into town promising to resurrect the dead.
The one where some crooks get ahold of a camera that can see the future.
The one where an eccentric and bitter millionaire’s nuclear war scare might be all too real.
The one where a man finds himself on a ship in 1942 and doesn’t know how he got there.
The one where Dennis Hopper is a neo-Nazi whose only real friend is Jewish and survived the Holocaust, but Hopper’s hate is driven by an overwhelming fear and a shadowy figure that looks an awful lot like Hitler.
The one where people in a post-apocalyptic world worship an unseen man in a cave, which you shouldn’t read anything into at all.
The one that’s basically a rip-off of Sunset Boulevard but still not a bad little episode.
The one where an incompetent guardian angel tries to redeem himself by helping Carol Burnett.
The one where a man who’s much older than his wife gets injected with a youth serum in an attempt to keep up with his wife.
The one where a writer can alter reality through his dictation machine.
The one where a movie star is getting warnings from her ring.
The one where a woman is having nightmares, a nervous breakdown, or both.
The one where a big city business man falls asleep during his commute and dreams of a small town community of the past, then gets a chance to go there if he wants.
The one where a creepy little girl reminds a young woman about her mother.
The one where a guy isn’t allowed to make any noise when he was a kid so he overcompensates as an adult and it super noisy and stuff.
The one where a man stranded on a distant planet meets a stranded woman from a different planet.
The one where a guy cheating on his wife starts to see weird visions on his TV set.
The one where a bookie tries to make amends to his son.
The one where the boss fires everyone in favor of computers until there’s nobody left to make everything more efficient and the company lives happily ever after.
The one where a programmer’s computer, Agnes, falls in love with him and becomes quite jealous.
The one where an elderly couple goes shopping for new bodies.
The one where a dude can make supernatural trades with people and everything doesn’t go as planned.
The one where a robot baseball player suddenly feels empathy because he’s given a heart and the heart is apparently where empathy comes from.
The one where a young boy can talk to his dead grandma through a toy phone.
The one where a man accidentally travels into the past and talks with himself as a young kid.
The one where a woman keeps seeing the same hitchhiker over and over again.
The one where an American WWII veteran and a Japanese-American played by George Takei fight in an attic and it’s pretty racist and weird.
The one where a man crash-lands on Mars and discovers a strange race of people.
The one where a man’s daughter goes missing but he can hear her cries for help.
The one where a guy plays pool against a ghost to prove that he really is the best of all time but even if he wins he’ll have to say that he beat a ghost which is a hard thing to prove when you think about it.
The one where some local cops try to find out which stranded bus passenger is actually a Martian.
The one where soldiers travel back in time to Little Big Horn.
The one where a commercial plane travels back in time and there’s dinosaurs and stuff.
The one where Captain Kirk and his new bride play a fortune-telling machine at a diner and get spooked.
The one where a book nerd survives a nuclear apocalypse only to get bullied by God, who apparently hates people that are near-sighted.
The one where a dude builds a nuclear fallout shelter and his neighbors make fun of him but then of course they all want to use it because shit’s about to go down.
The one where a father goes to war with his daughter’s doll.
The one where an alien race lands on Earth to help humans out and nothing else happens and everybody lives happily ever after.
The one where a man can read people’s minds and learns that literally everybody is terrible.
The one where beautiful people learn that they’re super ugly or something.
The one where “old” people take new bodies in a utopian future where nobody ever gets old which sounds awesome because in reality we’ll all be dead really soon.
The one where a museum curator asks to keep the wax figures of serial killers from a wax museum that’s closing.
The one where a woman keeps getting mysterious calls. At night.
The one where three astronauts blast into space in an experimental rocketship but their return timelines are all mixed up.
The one where astronauts crash land and go at each other’s throats.
The one where a guy is about to go on a 20-year space mission in suspended animation but falls in love with a woman so he makes plans to make sure they’re the same age when he comes back.
The one with horses and flashbacks and regrets and stuff. Spur. Get it? Spur of the moment. Do you get it? You get it.
The one where an average busybody is obsessed with exposing Communists and deviants in his spare time.