Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Shakespeare in The Twilight Zone: “The Purple Testament”

“The Purple Testament.” By Rod Serling. Perf. William Reynolds, Dick York, Barney Phillips, and Warren Oates. Dir. Richard L. Bare. The Twilight Zone. Season 1, episode 19. CBS. 12 February 1960. DVD. Image Entertainment, 2004.

In this episode, a soldier has the ability to see who is going to die that day.  The gift terrifies him, and he starts to exhibit signs of a nervous breakdown.

At the end of the episode (which you should see for yourself—I'll try to avoid spoilers), Rod Serling's voice comes in and gives a quote from Richard II (which he mistakenly attributes to Richard III):  “. . . he is come to open / The purple testament of bleeding war” (Richard II, III.iii.93-94).

Links: The Episode at Wikipedia.

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Bardfilm is normally written as one word, though it can also be found under a search for "Bard Film Blog." Bardfilm is a Shakespeare blog (admittedly, one of many Shakespeare blogs), and it is dedicated to commentary on films (Shakespeare movies, The Shakespeare Movie, Shakespeare on television, Shakespeare at the cinema), plays, and other matter related to Shakespeare (allusions to Shakespeare in pop culture, quotes from Shakespeare in popular culture, quotations that come from Shakespeare, et cetera).

Unless otherwise indicated, quotations from Shakespeare's works are from the following edition:
Shakespeare, William. The Riverside Shakespeare. 2nd ed. Gen. ed. G. Blakemore Evans. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1997.
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The very instant that I saw you did / My heart fly to your service; there resides, / To make me slave to it; and, for your sake, / Am I this patient [b]log-man.

—The Tempest