Rod Serling has been called Television's Last Angry Man, a curious statement when you
consider that he and Paddy Chaefsky are arguably the medium's FIRST angry men.

The photos of Rod Serling on this and other pages of this web site are property of CBS-TV
or property of the Serling family, and reproduction without express written permission is illegal.
Rod Serling

Rod Serling wrote quickly, possibly because
he chose subjects that moved him.



Frustrated by the excessive censorship of Fifties TV, Serling redeployed to the Twilight Zone, where he could "have Martians say things that Democrats and Republicans couldn't."


PATTERNS: On the eve of Twilight Zone's premiere in 1959, Mike Wallace grilled Serling about censors, money, and motivation. Read it here.

REQUIEM FOR A HEAVYWEIGHT: In the final interview before his death in 1975, Rod minces no well-considered words as he vents against the system in his inimitable fashion. Read it here.

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The 1956 Playhouse 90 "Requiem for a Heavyweight" won 1957 Emmys for (left to right): writer Rod Serling, producer Martin Manulis, (comedian Red Skelton and the unidentified girl were there for a different show) for star Jack Palance, CBS Executive VP Michael Dann, and CBS Programming Chief Hubble Robinson.

In the 1997 PBS special Submitted for Your Approval, Martin Manulis talked about Requiem for a Heavyweight:

"Even this many years later, I feel everything that I felt then about the night of the performance ... We sat in the control room and for ninety minutes, it just held. The excitement was unbelievable. Rod Serling's work was so electric to begin with, and it just was a triumph.

"I was about to run out to the floor when they called me back. Mr. Paley was on the phone. It was the first time we'd heard from him after a show.

"And he said, 'Tell everyone, especially Rod Serling, that tonight we put Television about ten years ahead.'"

Rod with Fielder Cook, director, while at work on "Patterns."
Jan. 1955.  Source: Binghamton Press.