5 things you never noticed in the Twilight Zone classic ''The Monsters Are Due on Maple Street''

Find out about the recycled props, behind-the-scenes talent, and original darker ending to this iconic episode.

This chilling first-season tale from The Twilight Zone remains one of the greatest episodes from the franchise. It continually ranks near or at the top of Top 10 lists. Because this morality tale unfortunately remains so relevant.

Rod Serling wrote this screenplay himself, casting the versatile Claude Akins in the lead role.

Sixty years after it first aired, "The Monsters Are Due on Maple Street" continues to captivate fans. There might be some things even diehard denizens of the Fifth Dimension might have missed. Let's take a closer observation.

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1. This alien wrote the lyrics to the "George of the Jungle" theme song

One of the observer aliens, the on with the technical equipment, is played by Sheldon Allman. The actor has many interesting little achievements, but none as fascinating as his musical credits. For starters, he was the singing voice of Mister Ed, recording the songs "The Pretty Little Filly with the Ponytail" and "The Empty Feedbag Blues." He also penned the lyrics to the George of the Jungle theme. Yep, this guy wrote, "Watch out for that tree!"

2. The episode recycled props and costumes from 'Forbidden Planet'

With their distinctive shoulder pads and ribbed breastplates, these uniforms are unmistakably the ones worn by Leslie Nielsen the crew in the 1956 science-fiction classic Forbidden Planet. The only difference being that the patch seems to have migrated from the epaulet to the upper arm. This is not the only piece recycled from Forbidden Planet. The flying saucer itself was used in the film.

3. Amzie Strickland (briefly) appeared in the '80s reboot

Keen-eyed Mayberry fans recognize Amzie Stickland as several characters from The Andy Griffith Show — Myra Tucker, Miss Rosemary, Mrs. Ralph Campbell and Lila Sims. On "Maple Street" she was merely "Woman." Strickland worked steadily from 1937 to 2001, alongside everyone from Abbott and Costello to the cast of ER. She also is the rare actor to appear in two iterations of The Twilight Zone! In 1985, she popped up — in a tiny, tiny role — as a cleaning lady in "But Can She Type?" alongside Pam Dawber, better known as Mindy from Mork & Mindy.

4. The Maple Street location appeared in the season five episode "Stopover in a Quiet Town"

Four seasons later, "Maple Street" would return as Centerville, the eerie setting of "Stopover in a Quiet Town." Here you can see the same house in both episodes. In reality, the location was the MGM studio back lot, in particular the "New England Street" made famous in the Andy Hardy film franchise with Judy Garland and Mickey Rooney. It can also be seen in Jailhouse Rock

5. Rod Serling wrote a much darker ending to the story

The episode ends with the aliens looking down upon the town from a distant hill. They board their spacecraft and soar into the night sky. But this is not the end of the tale, at least not as Rod Serling wrote. His written epilogue described Maple Street the following morning. Corpses and charred ruins filled the quiet hamlet. "When the sun came up on the following morning Maple Street was silent. Most of the houses had been burned. There were a few bodies lying on sidewalks and draped over porch railings," Serling wrote in the short story version featured in his 1960 book Stories from the Twilight Zone. "By Wednesday afternoon of the following week, a new set of residents had moved into Maple Street," Serling typed. "They were a handsome race of people." The aliens did not leave at all. They moved in.

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SheriHeffner 13 months ago
I read that story in a book I borrowed from the library. The aliens had multiple eyes and other differences. It was a creepy story
VBartilucci 13 months ago
The saucer from Forbidden Planet probably made more appearances on Twilight Zone than any human save for Rod himself.

Aside from appearing physically in The Invaders, stock shots of the opening flyover from the film appeared (sometimes upside-down and backwards) a ton of episodes, pretty much every time they needed to show a spaceship.

I always assumed it was a standard model of spaceship that a lot of alien races bought, like a Studebaker.
JoeSHill 13 months ago
As a rule, I despise any and all remakes and reboots of classic TV, and in the case of "THE TWILIGHT ZONE", I am strongly rooted on this opinion because the original CBS series (1959-1964) has no equals or successors to any of them, and Rod Serling was the absolute master, along with the other writers who contributed to this series. I will not waste my time on any of the previous remakes of "THE TWILIGHT ZONE" because I think its pathetic that we've reached this point where the business has totally run out of original ideas that they have remake shows with good intentions, but this is a waste of time and resources, and that also includes the CBS All Access version currently running- Rod Serling and his creation is extremely superior, but remakes and reboots are total desperation, nor do any of them have an ounce of originality, and that includes any version of stories that are adopted from any original scripts and writing. I stay with the original series because Serling was THAT good, along with the other writers who contributed to the show's memorable episodes!
RichardPniewski JoeSHill 13 months ago
The current CBS reboot is OK, but there is one lesson they haven't learned - Serling was smart enough to mix it up and throw in a more lighthearted episode from time to time. They weren't necessarily great, but it showed an acknowledgement that you can't beat people over the head with "seriousness" all the time. Once they learn that, the show will improve .
SheriHeffner JoeSHill 13 months ago
I have seen CBS all access and I don't approve of the foul language they use. I don't think Rod Serling would either.
mode JoeSHill 13 months ago
If you don’t watch it, how do you know it’s bad? ... in your humble opinion that is.
MrsPhilHarris JoeSHill 13 months ago
I agree that most remakes are dreadful.
JamesCavender 13 months ago
The 2002 reboot of Maple Street episode was very good too. Followed the original in more contemporary setting but the message is timeless!
Ranma 13 months ago
It was meant to be a comment on the McCartney hearings
trainer1158 Ranma 13 months ago
texasluva 13 months ago
Robby The Robot was a interesting prop. Played in Forbidden Planet (1956). Later to show up in The Twilight Zone (uncle Simon), Invisible Boy (1957), episodes of The Gale Storm Show, The Thin Man, Columbo, The Addams Family, and Lost in Space where he battles The Robot. Robby made few appearances after the 1970s, but he does have a cameo in Gremlins (1984); he can be seen standing in the background speaking some of his trademark lines. He was also featured in a 2006 commercial for AT&T.

Earlier years Robby spent time in a Museum where fans took a lot of his parts. He had to be re-built twice with parts from the 1950's.

Robby the Robot was inducted into the Robot Hall of Fame in 2004. Robby The Robot sold for $5.3 million a few years ago at auction.

Commander Adams: Nice planet you have here. High oxygen content.
Robby: I rarely use it myself, sir. It promotes rust
MrsPhilHarris 13 months ago
I love these stories. I always find it interesting to see where homes, buildings and costumes were originally used.
Mike 13 months ago
When TWILIGHT ZONE was starting production in '59, Buck Houghton, the showrunner, chose the MGM studios, because they had the best backlot, soundstages, costumes, and stock footage in Hollywood.
Houghton: "They never threw anything out."
You can see for yourself; if you watch enough Metro movies on TCM, you'll recognize many sets and costumes from ZONE episodes - and vice versa.
Stoney 13 months ago
I have "Stories from the Twilight Zone." The "handsome race of people" is also described as having "excellently shaped heads--two to each new resident!"

(And yes, I did go to my bookshelf to get the quote right lol)
texasluva 13 months ago
Yes the Aliens could have moved into Maple Street or any other Planet Earth location. Just throw them into darkness and watch them squirm, rant and rave. Once a handsome race but full of Prejudices. They become their own worst enemy......... Themselves. Go from one place to another and sit back and watch. From one to another....................
dmagoon 13 months ago
What's Allman's take on drunk driving? XD!
srrainwater 13 months ago
I liked the darker Rod originally wrote
Highlands_Doc srrainwater 13 months ago
Actually, the stories in the book were written afterward, based on the screenplays.
DarioWiter 13 months ago
George, George, George Of The Jungle
Strong as he can be
Watch out for that tree! 😝😆😁
I always thought the drums from the George of The Jungle Theme were "borrowed" for Iggy Pop's Lust For Life. Judges? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vYZ-n8L0AaI
George came along in 1967. Like Jonny Quest, he lasted less than one year. Seems like I watched them all a lot longer than that. Iggy/Bowie released "Lust" 10 years later. Maybe Hunt Sales (Iggy's drummer) was a toon fan. He would have been 13 when George was on, maybe 10 when Quest played. Both toons used those toms a lot.
You remind me of an old Jonny Quest mystery: did Race Bannon ever marry?
Dario AgingDisgracefully 13 months ago
Iggy Pop came after George Of The Jungle, even though I'm not of fan of that group, which peaked in popularity in the '70s when I was in preschool(even if I knew they were, I wouldn't have been into them, anyway).
stephaniestavropoulos 13 months ago
O.K. METV, I'm waiting for you to tell me the 5 things I didn't know or never noticed about this episode. Will that be happening any time soon?!?!
Good one Stephanie! Actually I didn't know about GOTJ, but the others are obvious!
cperrynaples 13 months ago
If I remember correctly, the director flipped the spaceship shot so the similarity wouldn't be obvious! Also, I believe the spaceship would be reused in later episodes such as Death Ship!
cperrynaples cperrynaples 13 months ago
PS never knew about the other ending! Jordan Peele should do this version on TZ 4.0!
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