The Twilight Zone

Season 1 Episode 13

The Four of Us are Dying

Aired Unknown Jan 01, 1960 on CBS
out of 10
User Rating
143 votes

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Episode Summary

A man who can change his face to resemble others gets into hot water with gangsters.

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  • entertaing but

    Clever a con man who thinks he can con his way though life. Just coo concidential that self rightoius crazy father shoots him at the end because he has the "wrong Face" {How did he find Arch Hammer{?}. Also when Hammer dies with his real face-no regret from the crazy father THAT HE SHOT THE WRONG MAN!
  • One of the Weaker Stories

    The man doesn't just change his face, he changes into an entirely different person at will. It sounds strange to say a TZ episode is too far-fetched, but this one is. The plot is not fully developed, and the weak ending is where this episode really falls short. It's lightweight viewing, but still reasonably entertaining.
  • Arch Hammer has thre ability to change his face. A clever talent, until he gets caught.

    The episode storyline sounds promising, a man with has the ability to cahnge his face. Imagine all of the cool things that he can do.

    What he ends up doing is taking the guise of people who are dead. He uses his powers to get close the friends of the people who are dead.

    For example, he takes the guise of a dead gang member. He goes back to the boss to collect money that he knew the boss owed to the the dead gang member.

    So, obviously, Arch is clever and does his research. However, the episode is filled with a lot of meaningless converstaion. The episode gets boring really fast.

    In the end, he dies in clever twist. He is caught with the wrong face at the wrong time. I guess it ended good, but I think that if Arch was as clever as he was made out to be, he would have thought of a way to escape.moreless
Harry Townes

Harry Townes

Arch Hammer

Phillip Pine

Phillip Pine

Hammer as Virgil Sterig

Ross Martin

Ross Martin

Hammer as Johnny Foster

Don Gordon

Don Gordon

Hammer as Andy Marshak

Rod Serling

Rod Serling


Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (0)

  • QUOTES (2)

    • (Opening Narration)
      Narrator: His name is Arch Hammer, he's 36 years old. He's been a salesman, a dispatcher, a truck driver, a con man, a bookie, and a part-time bartender. This is a cheap man, a nickel and dime man, with a cheapness that goes past the suit and the shirt; a cheapness of mind, a cheapness of taste, a tawdry little shine on the seat of his conscience, and a dark-room squint at a world whose sunlight has never gotten through to him. But Mr. Hammer has a talent, discovered at a very early age. This much he does have. He can make his face change. He can twitch a muscle, move a jaw, concentrate on the cast of his eyes, and he can change his face. He can change it into anything he wants. Mr. Archie Hammer, jack of all trades, has just checked in at three-eighty a night, with two bags, some newspaper clippings, a most odd talent, and a master plan to destroy some lives.

    • (Closing Narration)
      Narrator: He was Arch Hammer, a cheap little man who just checked in. He was Johnny Foster, who played a trumpet and was loved beyond words. He was Virgil Sterig, with money in his pocket. He was Andy Marshak, who got some of his agony back on a sidewalk in front of a cheap hotel. Hammer, Foster, Sterig, Marshak - and all four of them were dying.

  • NOTES (2)

    • The "Hotel Real" sign, in front of Arch Hammer's hotel, is an MGM prop, originally used in a Mexican street setting in their 1953 feature film Take the High Ground!, starring Richard Widmark and Karl Malden.

    • Originally, the four main roles (Hammer, Foster, Sterig, and Marshank) were to be played by one man with makeup changes. However, after timing the transition, the production crew realized the actor would be in makeup longer than he would be on stage. Thus, the parts were cast with four different men.


    • Maggie: Me and Electra.
      Referencing Eugene O'Neill's Mourning Becomes Electra (1931). The play, set during the American Civil War, is an update of the myth of Orestes.