Twilight Zone radio plays

Earlier this week, Blackstone Audio sent me a box containing all three volumes of collected Twilight Zone radio plays, produced in 2004 for CBS radio using Rod Serling's original scripts, with Stacey Keach narrating and hosting. Each volume contains ten episodes, and each episode has a celebrity actor in the lead role, from Lou Diamond Phillips to Ed Begley Jr to Adam West to Kim Fields.

I'm an enormous fan of the original Twilight Zone series (even moreso since I heard the excellent Tank Riot podcast on Rod Serling) and I really enjoyed the 30 episodes in these collections, though a few were weaker in the adaptation and acting than others. Keach does a surprisingly good job standing in for Serling, and the scripts — lightly updated for contemporary performance — are really well-suited to audio. There's a good mix of comic and spooky, dark and light in the stories adapted, too.

This strikes me as really top-notch cross-country driving audio, the kind of thing you could listen to in 40-minute chunks with your kids, each episode sparking a discussion about social issues, technological speculation, or moral questions. A few of the episodes are spooky enough to qualify as campfire stories, too. At about $30/box, it works out to $3 per episode, which seems about right — a little expensive for a couple of the weaker ones and a real steal for the great ones.

Link to Volume 1,

Link to Volume 2,

Link to Volume 3