The Twilight Zone

Season 2 Episode 16

A Penny For Your Thoughts

2
Aired Unknown Feb 03, 1961 on CBS
8.9
out of 10
User Rating
139 votes
2

EPISODE REVIEWS
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Episode Summary

EDIT
The lucky flip of a coin seems to give a mild-mannered bank clerk the power to read minds. But he soon learns that you can't believe everything you read.

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SUBMIT REVIEW
  • While this episode was about telepathy, I believed it went further by begging the viewer to ask himself: is it more rewarding to have your honest thoughts actually heard by others, instead of keeping them secret?moreless

    8.5
    It seems that today's TV shows or episodes focused on the telepathy theme usually involve some evil, sinister or troubling plot. But the Twilight Zones A Penny For Your Thoughts offers the viewer something much lighter.



    Written by George Clayton Johnston over 46 years ago, A Penny For Your Thoughts is a clever episode that is still fun to watch today.



    I laughed and sympathized with Hector Pooles situation as he comes to terms with his new telepathic ability. Pooles quirky mannerisms and facial expressions reminded me of a Jim Carey or Jack Lemmon in their early careers.



    While this episode was about telepathy, I believed it went further by begging the viewer to ask himself: is it more rewarding to have your honest thoughts actually heard by others, instead of keeping them secret?moreless
  • Hector Poole has landed a coin on it's edge. Here's what happens to the lucky people who can do that.

    8.8
    Hector B. Poole leads an ordinary life as a banker. His only real problem is that he never stands up for himself. While buying a newspaper, without even trying, Poole manages to stand the coin on it's edge. Afterwards, he discovers that he can hear people's thoughts. At his bank, Poole is able to prevent a man from borrowing money because the man is planning to bet on the horse races with it. He then hears one of the employees, Mr. Smithers, planning to rob the bank. He confides in Ms. Turner about his ability, but she dosen't believe him at first. Later, Poole tells his boss, Mr. Bagby about what Mr. Smithers' plan. Poole later discovers that Mr. Smithers didn't actually intend to rob the bank. But, with Ms. Turner's guidance, Poole is able to get a promotion and walk Ms. Turner home. On the way, he buys a paper and knocks over his previous coin, losing his new ability in the process. Freed from the voices, Hector and Helen walk to the subway. This episode shows that people's minds are not to be explored lightly. You may be in over your head.moreless

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions

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  • TRIVIA (1)

    • The closing credits shows a still of a quarter standing on edge amid numerous coins. Interestingly, despite the episode's title, not one of them is a penny.

  • QUOTES (4)

    • (Opening Narration)
      Narrator: Mr. Hector B. Poole, resident of the Twilight Zone. Flip a coin and keep flipping it. What are the odds? Half the time it will come up heads, half the time tails. But in one freakish chance in a million, it'll land on its edge. Mr. Hector B. Poole, a bright human coin, on his way to the bank.

    • Hector Poole: Well at least I learned one thing. People aren't what they seem.

    • Mr. Brand: Romancing the help, Mr. Poole? Well, who can blame you? Miss Turner is the prettiest girl in the accounts section. (thinking) Which is saying absolutely nothing. I haven't seen such an aggregation of beasts since the last time I went to the circus. (aloud) Not much chance for socializing around a bank, is there? (thinking) This one's probably a tiger under the proper conditions. All the sweet, prim types revert to the jungle once more. (Poole pours water on him) You did that deliberately!

    • (Closing Narration)
      Narrator: One time in a million, a coin will land on its edge, but all it takes to knock it over is a vagrant breeze, a vibration or a slight blow. Hector B. Poole, a human coin, on edge for a brief time in the Twilight Zone.

  • NOTES (1)

    • The original idea for this episode came from a short story written by Ted Kneeland; a writer, producer, director that worked for NBC before going to Australia to start Australian broadcasting in 1953.

  • ALLUSIONS (0)

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