Night Gallery

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Night Gallery
Joan Crawford Night Gallery 1969.JPG
Joan Crawford in the film which began the series, 1969
Also known as Rod Serling's Night Gallery
Genre Fantasy
Drama
Format Anthology
Created by Rod Serling
Presented by Rod Serling
Theme music composer Gil Mellé
Composer(s) Robert Bain
Paul Glass
John Lewis
Gil Mellé
Oliver Nelson
Robert Prince
Eddie Sauter
Country of origin United States
Original language(s) English
No. of seasons 3
No. of episodes 43 (+ 1 pilot) (List of episodes)
Production
Executive producer(s) Paul Freeman
Producer(s) Jack Laird
William Sackheim
Camera setup Single-camera
Running time 50 minutes (seasons 1 & 2)
25 minutes (season 3)
Production company(s) NBC
Broadcast
Audio format Monaural
Original run

November 8, 1969 (1969-11-08) (pilot)

December 16, 1970 (1970-12-16) – May 27, 1973 (1973-05-27)

Night Gallery is an American anthology series that aired on NBC from 1970 to 1973, featuring stories of horror and the macabre. Rod Serling, who had gained fame from an earlier series, The Twilight Zone, served both as the on-air host of Night Gallery and as a major contributor of scripts, although he did not have the same control of content and tone as he had on The Twilight Zone.[1][2] Serling viewed Night Gallery as a logical extension of The Twilight Zone, but while both series shared an interest in thought-provoking dark fantasy, the lion’s share of Zone‘s offerings were science fiction while Night Gallery focused on horror and the supernatural.[3]

Format[edit]

Serling appeared in an art gallery setting and introduced the macabre tales that made up each episode by unveiling paintings (by artist Thomas J. Wright) that depicted the stories. His intro usually was, “Good evening, and welcome to a private showing of three paintings, displayed here for the first time. Each is a collector’s item in its own way—not because of any special artistic quality, but because each captures on a canvas, suspends in time and space, a frozen moment of a nightmare.”

Night Gallery regularly presented adaptations of classic fantasy tales by authors such as H. P. Lovecraft, as well as original works, many of which were by Serling himself.

The series was introduced with a pilot TV movie that aired on November 8, 1969, and featured the directorial debut of Steven Spielberg, as well as one of the last acting performances by Joan Crawford.

Unlike the series, in which the paintings merely accompanied an introduction to the upcoming story, the paintings themselves actually appeared in the three segments, serving major or minor plot functions.

Night Gallery was initially part of a rotating anthology or wheel series called Four in One. This 1970–71 television series rotated four separate shows, including McCloud, SFX (San Francisco International Airport) and The Psychiatrist. Two of these, Night Gallery and McCloud were renewed for the 1971–72 season with McCloud becoming the most popular and longest running of the four.

Reception[edit]

The series attracted criticism for its use of comedic blackout sketches between the longer story segments in some episodes, and for its splintered, multiple-story format, which contributed to its uneven tone. Another notable difference from the original Twilight Zone series was there was no ending monologue by Serling summarizing the end of the story segment. Very often the camera would simply focus on the final chosen image (often for a chilling effect) for several seconds, then black out.

Serling wrote many of the teleplays, including "Camera Obscura", "The Caterpillar" (based on a short story by Oscar Cook), "Class of '99", "Cool Air" (based on a short story by H. P. Lovecraft), "The Doll", "Green Fingers", "Lindemann's Catch", and "The Messiah on Mott Street" (heavily influenced by Bernard Malamud's "Angel Levine"). Non-Serling efforts include "The Dead Man", "I'll Never Leave You—Ever", "Pickman's Model" (based on a short story by H. P. Lovecraft), "A Question of Fear", "Silent Snow, Secret Snow", and "The Sins of the Fathers".

By the final season, Serling, stung by criticism and ignored by the show's executives, all but disowned the series.

List of stories[edit]

Pilot[edit]

Title Original airdate Writer Director Cast Notes
"The Cemetery" November 8, 1969 Rod Serling Boris Sagal Roddy McDowall, Ossie Davis, George Macready Possibly inspired by the story "The Mezzotint" by M.R. James
"Eyes" November 8, 1969 Rod Serling Steven Spielberg Joan Crawford, Barry Sullivan, Tom Bosley
"Escape Route" November 8, 1969 Rod Serling Barry Shear Richard Kiley, Sam Jaffe

Season 1: 1970–71[edit]

Title Original airdate Writer Director Cast Notes
"The Dead Man" December 16, 1970 Douglas Heyes Douglas Heyes Carl Betz, Jeff Corey, Louise Sorel, Michael Blodgett Based on a short story of the same name by Fritz Leiber
"The Housekeeper" December 16, 1970 Matthew Howard John Meredyth Lucas Larry Hagman, Jeanette Nolan, Suzy Parker "Matthew Howard" was a pseudonym for Douglas Heyes
"Room with a View" December 23, 1970 Hal Dresner Jerrold Freedman Joseph Wiseman, Diane Keaton, Angel Tompkins Based on a short story of the same name by Hal Dresner
"The Little Black Bag" December 23, 1970 Rod Serling Jeannot Szwarc Burgess Meredith, Chill Wills Based on a short story of the same name by C.M. Kornbluth
"The Nature of the Enemy" December 23, 1970 Rod Serling Allen Reisner Joseph Campanella, James Sikking
"The House" December 30, 1970 Rod Serling John Astin Joanna Pettet, Paul Richards, Steve Franken Based on a short story by André Maurois
"Certain Shadows on the Wall" December 30, 1970 Rod Serling Jeff Corey Louis Hayward, Agnes Moorehead, Grayson Hall, Rachel Roberts Based on the short story "The Shadows on the Wall" by Mary E. Wilkins-Freeman
"Make Me Laugh" January 6, 1971 Rod Serling Steven Spielberg Godfrey Cambridge, Jackie Vernon, Tom Bosley, Al Lewis
"Clean Kills and Other Trophies" January 6, 1971 Rod Serling Walter Doniger Raymond Massey, Tom Troupe, Barry Brown, Herb Jefferson, Jr.
"Pamela's Voice" January 13, 1971 Rod Serling Richard Benedict Phyllis Diller, John Astin
"Lone Survivor" January 13, 1971 Rod Serling Gene Levitt John Colicos, Torin Thatcher, Hedley Mattingly Possibly inspired by the story of Frank Tower
"The Doll" January 13, 1971 Rod Serling Rudi Dorn Shani Wallis, John Williams, Henry Silva Based on a short story of the same name by Algernon Blackwood
"They're Tearing Down Tim Riley's Bar" January 20, 1971 Rod Serling Don Taylor William Windom, Diane Baker, John Randolph, Bert Convy Serling considered this script one of the finest two works he ever wrote (along with Requiem for a Heavyweight).
"The Last Laurel" January 20, 1971 Rod Serling Daryl Duke Jack Cassidy, Martin E. Brooks, Martine Beswick Based on "The Horsehair Trunk" by Davis Grubb

Season 2: 1971–72[edit]

Title Original airdate Writer Director Cast Notes
"The Boy Who Predicted Earthquakes" September 15, 1971 Rod Serling John Badham Clint Howard, Michael Constantine, Bernie Kopell Based on a short story of the same name by Margaret St. Clair
"Miss Lovecraft Sent Me" September 15, 1971 Jack Laird Gene Kearney Joseph Campanella, Sue Lyon
"The Hand of Borgus Weems" September 15, 1971 Alvin Sapinsley John M. Lucas George Maharis, Ray Milland Based on the short story "The Other Hand" by George Langelaan
"Phantom of What Opera?" September 15, 1971 Gene Kearney George Kearney Leslie Nielsen
"A Death in the Family" September 22, 1971 Rod Serling Jeannot Szwarc E. G. Marshall, Desi Arnaz, Jr. Based on a short story by Miriam Allen deFord
"The Merciful" September 22, 1971 Jack Laird Jeannot Szwarc Imogene Coca, King Donovan Based on a short story of the same name by Charles L. Sweeney, Jr.; twist on "The Cask of Amontillado"
"The Class of '99" September 22, 1971 Rod Serling Jeannot Szwarc Vincent Price, Brandon deWilde, Randolph Mantooth
"Witches' Feast" September 22, 1971 Gene Kearney Jerrold Freedman Agnes Moorehead, Ruth Buzzi
"Since Aunt Ada Came to Stay" September 29, 1971 Alvin Sapinsley William Hale Michele Lee, James Farentino, Jeanette Nolan, Jonathan Harris Based on a short story "The Witch" by A. E. van Vogt
"With Apologies to Mr. Hyde" September 29, 1971 Jack Laird Jeannot Szwarc Adam West, Jack Laird
"The Flip-Side of Satan" September 29, 1971 Malcolm Marmorstein & Gerald Sanford Jerrold Freedman Arte Johnson, Liam Sullivan the voice on records Based on a short story by Hal Dresner
"A Fear of Spiders" October 6, 1971 Rod Serling John Astin Patrick O'Neal, Kim Stanley Based on a short story "The Spider" by Elizabeth Walter
"Junior" October 6, 1971 Gene Kearney Theordore J. Flicker Wally Cox, Barbara Flicker
"Marmalade Wine" October 6, 1971 Jerrold Freedman Jerrold Freedman Robert Morse, Rudy Vallee Based on a short story by Joan Aiken
"The Academy" October 6, 1971 Rod Serling Jeff Corey Pat Boone, Leif Erickson Based on a short story of the same title by David Ely
"The Phantom Farmhouse" October 20, 1971 Halsted Welles Jeannot Szwarc David McCallum, Linda Marsh, David Carradine Based on a short story of the same title by Seabury Quinn
"Silent Snow, Secret Snow" October 20, 1971 Gene Kearney Gene Kearney Radames Pera, Lonny Chapman Based on a short story of the same title by Conrad Aiken; narrated by Orson Welles
"A Question of Fear" October 27, 1971 Theodore J. Flicker Jack Laird Leslie Nielsen, Fritz Weaver Based on a short story of the same title by Bryan Lewis
"The Devil Is Not Mocked" October 27, 1971 Gene Kearney Gene Kearney Helmut Dantine, Francis Lederer, Hank Brandt Based on a short story of the same title by Manly Wade Wellman. Lederer reprises his role as Dracula from The Return of Dracula.
"Midnight Never Ends" November 3, 1971 Rod Serling Jeannot Szwarc Susan Strasberg, Robert F. Lyons
"Brenda" November 3, 1971 Matthew Howard Allen Reisner Laurie Prange, Glenn Corbett, Robert J. Hogan, Barbara Babcock Based on a short story of the same title by Margaret St. Clair
"The Diary" November 10, 1971 Rod Serling William Hale Patty Duke, Virginia Mayo, David Wayne Features a brief, late appearance by Lindsay Wagner
"A Matter of Semantics" November 10, 1971 Gene Kearney Jack Laird Cesar Romero, E. J. Peaker
"Big Surprise" November 10, 1971 Richard Matheson Jeannot Szwarc John Carradine, Vincent Van Patten Based on a short story of the same title by Richard Matheson
"Professor Peabody's Last Lecture" November 10, 1971 Jack Laird Jerrold Freedman Carl Reiner A professor gives a lecture on entities from the Cthulhu Mythos. Possibly the first time Cthulhu's name appeared on national television.
"House with Ghost" November 17, 1971 Gene Kearney Gene Kearney Bob Crane, Jo Anne Worley, Alan Napier Based on a short story by August Derleth
"A Midnight Visit to the Neighborhood Blood Bank" November 17, 1971 Jack Laird William Hale Victor Buono
"Dr. Stringfellow's Rejuvenator" November 17, 1971 Rod Serling Jerrold Freedman Forrest Tucker, Murray Hamilton, Don Pedro Colley
"Hell's Bells" November 17, 1971 Theodore J. Flicker Theodore J. Flicker John Astin Based on a short story by Harry Turner
"The Dark Boy" November 24, 1971 Halsted Welles John Astin Elizabeth Hartman, Gale Sondergaard Based on a short story of the same title by August Derleth
"Keep in Touch—We'll Think of Something" November 24, 1971 Gene Kearney Gene Kearney Alex Cord, Joanna Pettet
"Pickman's Model" December 1, 1971 Alvin Sapinsley Jack Laird Bradford Dillman, Louise Sorel Based on a short story of the same title by H. P. Lovecraft
"The Dear Departed" December 1, 1971 Rod Serling Jeff Corey Steve Lawrence, Maureen Arthur, Harvey Lembeck Based on a short story of the same name by Alice-Mary Schnirring
"An Act of Chivalry" December 1, 1971 Jack Laird Jack Laird Deidre Hall
"Cool Air" December 8, 1971 Rod Serling Jeannot Szwarc Barbara Rush, Henry Darrow Based on a short story by H.P. Lovecraft
"Camera Obscura" December 8, 1971 Rod Serling John Badham René Auberjonois, Ross Martin Based on a short story of the same title by Basil Copper
"Quoth the Raven" December 8, 1971 Jack Laird Jeff Corey Marty Allen
"The Messiah on Mott Street" December 15, 1971 Rod Serling Don Taylor Edward G. Robinson, Yaphet Kotto, Tony Roberts
"The Painted Mirror" December 15, 1971 Gene Kearney Gene Kearney Zsa Zsa Gabor, Arthur O'Connell Rosemary DeCamp Based on a short story of the same title by Donald Wandrei
"The Different Ones" December 29, 1971 Rod Serling John Meredyth Lucas Dana Andrews, Jon Korkes Parallels themes from the Serling-penned The Twilight Zone episode "The Eye of the Beholder"
"Tell David…" December 29, 1971 Gerald Sanford Jeff Corey Sandra Dee, Jared Martin Based on a short story of the same title by Penelope Wallace
"Logoda's Heads" December 29, 1971 Robert Bloch Jeannot Szwarc Patrick Macnee, Brock Peters, Denise Nicholas, Tim Matheson Based on a short story of the same title by August Derleth
"Green Fingers" January 5, 1972 Rod Serling John Badham Cameron Mitchell, Elsa Lanchester, Michael Bell Based on a short story by R. C. Cook
"The Funeral" January 5, 1972 Richard Matheson John Meredyth Lucas Joe Flynn, Werner Klemperer, Jack Laird Based on the short story of the same name by Richard Matheson
"The Tune in Dan's Café" January 5, 1972 Gerald Sanford & Garrie Bateson David Rawlins Pernell Roberts, Susan Oliver Based on a short story by Shamus Frazier
"Lindemann's Catch" January 12, 1972 Rod Serling Jeff Corey Stuart Whitman, Harry Townes
"A Feast of Blood" January 12, 1972 Stanford Whitmore Jeannot Szwarc Sondra Locke, Norman Lloyd, Hermione Baddeley Based on a short story "The Fur Brooch" by Dulcie Gray
"The Late Mr. Peddington" January 12, 1972 Jack Laird Jeff Corey Harry Morgan, Kim Hunter Based on a short story "The Flat Male" by Frank Sisk; features a brief, late appearance by Randy Quaid
"The Miracle at Camafeo" January 19, 1972 Rod Serling Ralph Senesky Harry Guardino, Julie Adams, Ray Danton Based on a short story by C. B. Gilford
"The Ghost of Sorworth Place" January 19, 1972 Alvin Sapinsley Ralph Senesky Richard Kiley, Jill Ireland Based on the short story "Sorworth Place" by Russell Kirk
"The Waiting Room" January 26, 1972 Rod Serling Jeannot Szwarc Steve Forrest, Albert Salmi, Lex Barker, Jim Davis, Buddy Ebsen
"Last Rites for a Dead Druid" January 26, 1972 Alvin Sapinsley Jeannot Szwarc Bill Bixby, Carol Lynley, Donna Douglas, Ned Glass
"Deliveries in the Rear" February 9, 1972 Rod Serling Jeff Corey Cornel Wilde, Rosemary Forsyth, Kent Smith
"Stop Killing Me" February 9, 1972 Jack Laird Jeannot Szwarc Geraldine Page, James Gregory Based on a short story of the same title by Hal Dresner
"Dead Weight" February 9, 1972 Jack Laird Timothy Galfas Jack Albertson, Bobby Darin Based on the short story "Out of the Country" by Jeffry Scott
"I'll Never Leave You—Ever" February 16, 1972 Jack Laird Daniel Haller Lois Nettleton, Royal Dano, John Saxon Based on a short story of the same title by Rene Morris
"There Aren't Any More MacBanes" February 16, 1972 Alvin Sapinsley John Newland Joel Grey, Howard Duff Features a brief, early appearance by a young Mark Hamill. Based on the short story "By One, By Two and By Three" by Stephen Hall
"You Can't Get Help like That Anymore" February 23, 1972 Rod Serling Jeff Corey Cloris Leachman, Broderick Crawford, Lana Wood
"The Sins of the Fathers" February 23, 1972 Halsted Welles Jeannot Szwarc Geraldine Page, Richard Thomas, Michael Dunn Based on a short story of the same title by Christianna Brand
"The Caterpillar" March 1, 1972 Rod Serling Jeannot Szwarc Joanna Pettet, Laurence Harvey, John Williams Based on the short story "Boomerang" by Oscar Cook
"Little Girl Lost" March 1, 1972 Stanford Whitmore Timothy Galfas Ed Nelson, William Windom, Ivor Francis Based on a short story of the same title by E.C. Tubb
"Satisfaction Guaranteed" March 22, 1972 Jack Laird Jeannot Szwarc Victor Buono Vignette, premiered during a repeat broadcast of the September 22, 1971 episode, replacing "Witches' Feast"

Season 3: 1972–73[edit]

Title Original airdate Writer Director Cast Notes
"Return of the Sorcerer" September 24, 1972 Halsted Welles Jeannot Szwarc Vincent Price, Patricia Sterling, Bill Bixby Based on a short story of the same title by Clark Ashton Smith
"The Girl with the Hungry Eyes" October 1, 1972 Robert Malcolm Young John Badham James Farentino, John Astin, Joanna Pettet Based on a short story of the same title by Fritz Leiber
"Rare Objects" October 22, 1972 Rod Serling Jeannot Szwarc Mickey Rooney, Raymond Massey
"Spectre in Tap-Shoes" October 29, 1972 Gene Kearney Jeannot Szwarc Sandra Dee, Dane Clark, Christopher Connelly Story by Jack Laird
"You Can Come Up Now, Mrs. Millikan" November 12, 1972 Rod Serling John Badham Ozzie Nelson, Harriet Nelson, Roger Davis, Michael Lerner Based on the short story "The Secret of the Vault" by J. Wesley Rosenquist
"Smile, Please" November 12, 1972 Jack Laird Jack Laird Cesare Danova, Lindsay Wagner
"The Other Way Out" November 19, 1972 Gene Kearney Gene Kearney Burl Ives, Ross Martin Story by Kurt van Elting
"Fright Night" December 10, 1972 Robert Malcolm Young Jeff Corey Stuart Whitman, Barbara Anderson, Alan Napier Story by Kurt van Elting
"Finnegan's Flight" December 17, 1972 Rod Serling Gene Kearney Burgess Meredith, Cameron Mitchell, Barry Sullivan
"She'll Be Company for You" December 24, 1972 David Rayfiel Gerald Perry Finnerman Leonard Nimoy, Lorraine Gary, Kathryn Hays Based on a short story of the same title by Andrea Newman
"The Ring with the Red Velvet Ropes" January 7, 1973 Robert Malcolm Young Jeannot Szwarc Gary Lockwood, Joan van Ark, Chuck Connors Based on a short story of the same title by Edward D. Hoch
"Something in the Woodwork" January 14, 1973 Rod Serling Edward M. Abroms Leif Erickson, Paul Jenkins, John McMurtry, Geraldine Page, Barbara Rhoades Based on the short story "Housebound" by R. Chetwynd-Hayes
"Death on a Barge" March 4, 1973 Halsted Welles Leonard Nimoy Lesley Ann Warren, Lou Antonio, Brooke Bundy, Robert Pratt Based on the short story "The Canal" by Everil Worrell; it was Nimoy's directing debut
"Whisper" May 13, 1973 David Rayfiel Jeannot Szwarc Dean Stockwell, Sally Field Based on a short story by Martin Waddell
"The Doll of Death" May 20, 1973 Jack Guss John Badham Susan Strasberg, Alejandro Rey Based on a short story by Vivian Meik
"Hatred unto Death" May 27, 1973 Halsted Welles Gerald Perry Finnerman Steve Forrest, Dina Merrill, Fernando Lamas Based on an Inner Sanctum Mystery episode from 1941 titled The Man from Yesterday, written by Milton Geiger[4]
"How to Cure the Common Vampire" May 27, 1973 Jack Laird Jack Laird Richard Deacon, Johnny Brown
"Die Now, Pay Later" Jack Laird Timothy Galfas Will Geer, Slim Pickens Based on the short story "Year-End Clearance" by Mary Linn Roby
"Room for One Less" Jack Laird Jack Laird Lee Jay Lambert, James Metropole

Award nominations[edit]

Night Gallery was nominated for an Emmy Award for its first-season episode "They're Tearing Down Tim Riley's Bar" as the Outstanding Single Program on U.S. television in 1971. In 1972, the series received another nomination (Outstanding Achievement in Makeup) for the second-season episode "Pickman's Model."

Syndication[edit]

In order to increase the number of episodes that were available for syndication, the 60-minute episodes were reedited into a 30-minute time slot, with many segments severely cut, and others extended by inserting 'new' scenes of recycled, previously discarded, or stock footage to fill up the time. In their book Rod Serling's Night Gallery: An After-Hours Tour, authors Scott Skelton and Jim Benson identify 39 of the 98 individual segments that were produced for Night Gallery as being "severely altered" in syndication. As well, 25 episodes of a short-lived (and otherwise unrelated) supernatural series from 1972, The Sixth Sense, were also incorporated into the syndicated version of the series, with Serling providing newly filmed introductions to those episodes. As The Sixth Sense was originally a one-hour show, these episodes were all severely edited to fit into the half-hour timeslot.

In recent years, the original, uncut version of the series (and without the additional Sixth Sense episodes) has been shown on the Encore Mystery cable network, allowing fans to see the episodes in their original format for the first time in 30 years. The show is also available in the 30-minute format in some markets through the Retro Television Network and MeTV. All three seasons, excluding the pilot episode and the "Witches Feast" segment from Season Two, are available on Hulu free of charge.

DVD releases[edit]

In 2004, Universal released the Region 1 DVD collection (including the pilot film and the six episodes of the first season) of the series, plus bonus episodes from Seasons 2 and 3 as extras. On October 16, 2006, the first season (including the pilot film and two bonus episodes, one from Season 2 and one from Season 3) was released on Region 2 DVD.

In August 2008, Universal announced a November 11, 2008, release of the complete Season 2 DVD collection (only Region 1). Later, they announced that one story segment from Season 2, "Witches' Feast", would not be included, due to the fact that "Universal was not able to locate portions of the 40-year-old episode."

Season three was released on April 10, 2012. "Witches' Feast" is included as bonus material.

DVD name Ep # Release date Additional information
The Complete First Season 17 August 24, 2004
Season 2 61 November 11, 2008
  • Podcast commentaries, featuring Jim Benson and Scott Skelton
  • Audio commentaries, with Guillermo del Toro
  • Revisiting the Gallery: A Look Back
  • Art Gallery: The Paintings in "Rod Serling's Night Gallery"
  • NBC TV Promos
Season 3 20 April 10, 2012

See also[edit]

Similar series

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Night Gallery". The New York Times. 
  2. ^ Skelton, Scott; Benson, Jim (1999). Rod Serling's Night Gallery: An After-Hours Tour. Syracuse University Press. ISBN 978-0-8156-2782-1. 
  3. ^ http://nightgallery.net/night-gallery-episode-guide/
  4. ^ Skelton, Scott; Benson, Jim (2012). Night gallery / Season three (DVD). Universal City, California, USA: Universal Studios. OCLC 773758625. Retrieved January 4, 2013. 

External links[edit]