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Every nerd worth their salt can describe — in great detail — at least one single episode from the original run of The Twilight Zone. The episodic masterpiece was the originator of some of the best stories, most compelling twists, and incredible performances of the 1950s and 1960s. The star-studded series helmed by Rod Serling (aka, the Man Himself) has earned its right among the upper levels of science fiction history, and TV history in general. But how much do you really know about the show and its origins? Here, for your consideration, are a few things they didn’t want you to know about The Twilight Zone.

1. The Origins of ‘The Twilight Zone’

From his time as a boy into manhood, Rod Serling nursed an equally passionate love for both the pulp fiction of his day as well as contemporary politics. In addition, Serling was an avid critic of censorship in any form. It was the marriage of these ideas that helped inform The Twilight Zone, which used its sci-fi trappings as a means to explore contemporary themes in a way that largely prevented network intervention. Another way to say that is: Rod Serling was freaking brilliant.

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