Twilight Zone First Season

"You're looking at a tableau of reality, things of substance, of physical material: a desk, a window, a light. These things exist and have dimension. Now this is Arthur Curtis, age thirty-six, who also is real. He has flesh and blood, muscle and mind. But in just a moment we will see how thin a line separates that which we assume to be real with that manufactured inside of a mind."

Businessman Arthur Curtis finds his phone dead. He is then surprised to hear a voice yell, "Cut!" and see that his office is just a set on a soundstage. Everyone tells him that he is Jerry Raigan, a drunken movie star on the decline, and "Arthur Curtis" is a character Raigan is playing. Curtis drives to where his home should be, but finds no evidence of his life. Raigan's agent, thinking his client is having a nervous breakdown, tells Curtis not to worry about returning to the set, the picture has been cancelled and the sets are being dismantled. Curtis, realizing the last link to his world is about to be destroyed, rushes to the set. Just in time, he arrives on the set and pleads not to be left in this uncaring place. Curtis finds himself back in his office, while the agent arrives on the set and finds Raigan has vanished.

"The modus operandi for the departure from life is usually a pine box of such and such dimensions, and this is the ultimate in reality. But there are other ways for a man to exit from life. Take the case of Arthur Curtis, age thirty-six. His departure was along a highway with an exit sign that reads: 'This way to escape.' Arthur Curtis, en route to... the Twilight Zone."

Notes: Second of two intros without the word "the" (the other is in "The Hitch-Hiker").

Notes and corrected narrations courtesy of Twilight Zone Cafe Moderator, Matt Vandermast (aka "James B.W. Bevis")


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