The Jeopardy Room

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"The Jeopardy Room"
The Twilight Zone episode
Episode no. Season 5
Episode 29
Directed by Richard Donner
Written by Rod Serling
Production code 2639
Original air date April 17, 1964
Guest appearance(s)
Episode chronology
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"Caesar and Me"
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"Stopover in a Quiet Town"
List of Twilight Zone episodes

"The Jeopardy Room" is episode 149 of the American television anthology series The Twilight Zone, which originally aired on April 17, 1964 on CBS. It was the last of three Twilight Zone episodes (the others being season two's The Silence and season three's The Shelter) to feature a story without any supernatural or science fiction elements. It does, however, contain one of the series' signature twist endings.


Trying to defect, former KGB Major Ivan Kuchenko (Martin Landau) is trapped inside a hotel room. Commissar Vassiloff (John van Dreelen), a hitman; and Boris (Robert Kelljan), his assistant, are watching him from a room across the street. Vassiloff is a sadistic killer who has tricked Kuchenko into drinking a sleeping drug in the hotel room after pretending to surrender to Kuchenko. Kuchenko wakens to learn that Vassiloff has planted a bomb in the room: Ivan must find it within three hours, or he will be shot by Vassiloff and Boris, who have a gun trained on him at all times. Vassiloff has hidden the bomb in the room's telephone, where it will be triggered by picking up an incoming call. Ivan manages to escape and avoid being shot by exiting when the assassins were off-guard (when they tried to call him a second time). Later, Vassiloff and Boris enter the room and try to figure out what went wrong. The phone rings, and Boris—without thinking—picks it up; Vassiloff, realizing what is happening, yells at Boris, but the telephone bomb quickly goes off. On the other end of the phone line is Ivan Kuchenko at the airport. When the operator notifies him of the bad connection, he reassures her that the message was indeed delivered and as the loudspeaker announces that his plane is about to depart he walks to his freedom. The scene cuts to Vassiloff and Boris's charred corpses.

Opening narration[edit]

Closing Narration[edit]


  • DeVoe, Bill. (2008). Trivia from The Twilight Zone. Albany, GA: Bear Manor Media. ISBN 978-1-59393-136-0
  • Grams, Martin. (2008). The Twilight Zone: Unlocking the Door to a Television Classic. Churchville, MD: OTR Publishing. ISBN 978-0-9703310-9-0
  • Zicree, Marc Scott: The Twilight Zone Companion. Sillman-James Press, 1982 (second edition)

External links[edit]