Sunday, September 22, 2013

Why Twilight Zone?

So, depending where this entry falls in the Thought Balloons space-time continuum it might be apparent that this here is my final week here at Thought Balloons. If this hasn’t been revealed beforehand, it has now. There’s a lot I could say, but I only have so much room so I’m going to paraphrase from the email I sent to Ben explaining my decision.

I knew that this day would come sooner or later, I just didn’t think it would be this soon. With Curriculum, my column at The Weekly Crisis, looking for work in a city the other side of the country, an editing gig and getting my own projects off the ground I found it increasingly hard to carve out time to put quality scripts out on a consistent basis for Thought Balloons. I have no desire to put out substandard scripts for a site I value and treasure so much. Something has to give, and in this instance it’s unfortunate that it has to be Thought Balloons.

I’ve valued my time at the site highly. It’s taught me so much about my own process, what I’m capable of, as well as introducing me to a group of talented writers I’m honoured to have been a part of and who I can proudly call friends.

This wasn’t an easy choice to make, but one that had a certain sense of inevitability about it.
And so to my pick.

Twilight Zone.

I have waxed lyrical on Twitter, Tumblr and to anyone who will listen about my love for this show. Even now, decades after its creation ,the show holds up as an example of clever, crisp and engaging entertainment. Its creator Rod Serling is amongst my literary heroes and his impact on popular culture cannot be stated enough. The show also attracted many other writing heavyweights such as Charles Beaumont, Richard Matheson and Ray Bradbury.

Any conceivable genre could be played with (westerns, sci-fi, drama, horror), stretched, poked and prodded into something new. The settings and characters could be historical or fantastical but, like all good drama, they spoke to something we could relate to. This could be the small town paranoia of The Monsters From Maple Street, the yearning for youth and nostalgia explored in Walking Distance or the notion of beauty in Eye of the Beholder.

Twilight Zone could be anything.

The comics of the same name are a mixed bag, alternating from original content to adaptations of episodes gone by. I’ll admit the connection this week is tenuous. But, as it’s my last week, hopefully my fellow TB-er’s (and those of you at home) will indulge me one last time and come up with some fantastic one page strips.

Okay, Rod, play me out…

“You unlock this door with the key of imagination. Beyond it is another dimension— a dimension of sound, a dimension of sight, a dimension of mind. You’re moving into a land of both shadow and substance, of things and ideas. You’ve just crossed over into the Twilight Zone.”

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