The Twilight Zone

Season 3 Episode 8

It's a Good Life

Aired Unknown Nov 03, 1961 on CBS

Episode Fan Reviews (7)

out of 10
169 votes
  • Evil Seed

    Another favorate of mine. It's not hard to see why, it's one that I thought was very creepy. Bill Muny for a kid at the time was a really good actor, making himself an anti Christ like character a force of evil to be reconded with. There is very little explination as to why according to the begining of the narration supposedly all of the world is destroyed except for one little farming town (possibly Billy the perpetrator)? Why Anthony is so powerful and seems to be abusing his powers? What the heck happens after people or things are wished away to the cornfield?

    This tale doesn't need explanation because it's mainly invested in moody horror sensability and emotion. Sort of has the errie sensibility of a folklore or Brother's Grimm tale. From the begining visual when we see everyone just smiling, they seem more like very forced smiles (similar to some of the opening in David Lynch's Blue Velvet) you can tell there is something wrong with this picture. From how the adults and some of the older kids act we are able to get some information from them about the type of existance they live in and who Anthony is. On the outside it looks like any other town nice and quiet but underneath it it's actually a post apaciliptic hell. Some of the information gives us a feeling of chilling dread from people forced to think happy thoughts all the time to shield them from giving Anthony a reason to use his powers against them, lack of resources, people that always go missing, kids who Anthony wished away, and other things. You feel a little sense of pity for most of the adults, they constantly wear masks of happyness but underneath those masks their are hints of desperation, despair, repressed anger, and depression. Anthony is an interesting bad guy even though he is a perpetrator of bad things, there at times seems to be some humanity in the kid which gives you a hint he might have a concious. It kinda brings a lot of questions, is the kid really responsible for his actions or is he a victum of circumstance, perhaps if his parients gave him proper guidence he might not so many bad things. Basically on one hand this could be seen as a causionary fable about what happens when you raise a child improperly. But mainly it's a metaphoric tale show how the ideal peaceful existance we supposedly are living is a complete lie and the evil that lies underneth it. Is Anthony really as evil as we are ment to believe or could the older people living the continual peaceful existance be more eviler than him. After all they all have to pay very huge prices to maintain living even if it means turning your back on your best friend/husband as we saw in the party. It's possible all of them could have overpowered Anthony but they did nothing for they were too week and somewhat bankrupt morally. Also in the final scene at one moment the parients were going to stand up to Anthony but then clammed up, was Anthony really going to send his father to the cornfield at that moment or was he just trying to understand why his father was acting that way at the moment?

    It sort of makes you think about all the peacful existances coexisting during times of war and crisis. Why there were many people that did nothing while others did everything to maintain that peaceful existance a lot of people live in. It almost feels as though Anthony is trying very hard to create that peaceful existance for not so much himself but everyone but it doesn't always seem possible. Just as there are no explanations in the story, we have no answers to these questions it's really up to you. Just remember keep thinking happy thoughts.
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