The Twilight Zone

Season 3 Episode 21

Kick the Can

Aired Unknown Feb 09, 1962 on CBS

Episode Fan Reviews (4)

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out of 10
148 votes
  • To his lifelong friend's dismay, a nursing home resident (Ernest Truex) comes to believe that children's games hold the secret of youth. Also starring Russell Collins.

    My favorite Twilight Zone episode. Wonderfully written and acted, and contains my basic philosophy of life in a nutshell (Charles Whitley's line, "There *is* magic in the world..."; the excerpts from Bernard Herrmann's "Walking Distance" score are Exhibit A).

    To me, this is an episode not just about old people, though there would be nothing wrong with that, but about the meaning of life, about true magic and what it means. I find the ending of this episode very powerful--the combination of joy and tragedy affects me more deeply than I can put into words--and it's certainly a "magic" ending in the sense that it violates the known laws of nature. But it would seem almost trivial to me if it weren't also a necessary and proper fulfillment of the magic Charles sees *within* nature--in things like love and friendship, babies being born and kids playing where the grass is, people being who they are and not who others define them to be, faith and courage, the ability to keep your youth alive even as you mature, the night air and the stars.

    These varied and numerous things meld into a unified, harmonious vision of life here--like youth and old age, "curiously intertwined and not separate." This episode has waken "some sleeping part" of me many, many times.