Guest host Robert Sean Leonard presents a tribute to the “The Twilight Zone.”  Two of the three stories on this show were performed at Symphony Space as part of an evening celebrating the classic television show , created by Rod Serling.  Serling and his writers started in pulp fiction, but they were also humanists.  They used elements of fantasy, horror, and science fiction to tackle important social issues.
One of the stories adapted for the series was Price Day’s “Four O’Clock.”  A self-appointed vigilante with magical powers knows just how to make the world a better place.   Reader Zachary Quinto has good street cred for the weird and otherworldly.  He played serial killer Sylar in the original television series “Heroes;” Spock in the 2009 “Star Trek” film and its sequels “Star Trek Into Darkness,” and “Star Trek Beyond,” and was nominated for an Emmy for his performance in “American Horror Story: Asylum.”  Other television credits include “Girls,” and “Hannibal.”
Next from our selection of “Twilight Zone” stories is Charles Beaumont’s “Perchance to Dream.”  Beaumont was a prolific fantasy author who scripted a number of classic “Twilight Zone” episodes, as well as the screenplays for several films, including “The Seven Faces of Dr. Lao,” “The Intruder,” and “The Masque of the Red Death.”   In “Perchance to Dream,” a man consults his doctor about a sleep disorder, and the boundaries between waking and dreaming blur.
Reader Zach Grenier has had long career in televison and on stage.  He’s currently appearing on “The Good Wife,” and other shows include “Touching Evil,” “24,” and “Deadwood.”  On stage  he’s appeared in “33 Variations,” “Stuff Happens,” “A Man for All Seasons,” and “A Question of Mercy,” among others.
Our final story in this show was not part of “The Twilight Zone,” but author Roald Dahl is also a master of the uncanny.  While he’s known for his enchanting and playful children’s books, including classics like Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, James and the Giant Peach, and Matilda, in short fiction he had a darker side, in such works as “Lamb to the Slaughter”, and the story we’ll hear on this show, “The Landlady.”  A young man finds the perfect bed-and-breakfast–and the perfect hostess.  Sam Underwood performed Roald Dahl’s “The Landlady”  at the PUSH Comedy Theater in Norfolk, Virginia, as the  part of the Virginia Arts Festival’s Fringe Festival.   Underwood’s stage credits include “Candida and Equus.”  On television he’s been seen in “Dexter,” “Homeland,” and “The Following.”
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