10 Times The Twilight Zone Predicted the Future

After three canceled TV reboots, The Twilight Zone today returns in a new form: virtual reality. As creator Rod Serling dubbed it in 1959, the fifth dimension has finally hit three dimensions 63 years later in a game for Oculus Quest 2.

Throughout the original runs of five seasons and 156 episodes, virtual reality wasn’t something that was featured — or at least, not as wearable technology. Sure, people were occasionally body swapped or sent on impossible journeys through time and space.

Starting with a real gut punch, “The Midnight Sun” provides a horrifying glimpse into a world where the climate is no longer hospitable for humans. Water is rationed, and temperatures hit 130 degrees by the end of the episode.

Runaway Climate Change in The Midnight Sun

The Power of Social Media Division

Okay, we accept that aliens aren’t here at the time of this writing, but “The Monsters Are Due on Maple Street” is less about space monsters and more about the monstrous behavior they awaken in the neighborhood.

Job Losses Via Automation

“The Brain Center at Whipple’s” — a forgettable episode from the show’s final season — is a classic tale of reaping what you sow. A factory owner replaces his human workforce with machines before being ultimately replaced by the familiar mechanical face of Robby the Robot himself.

AI Assistants With Personality

Speaking of artificial intelligence, “From Agnes with Love” may feel a little familiar to anyone with an Amazon Echo device. Agnes, a sort of Alexa of the 1960s, is on hand to advise computer programmer Jane on how to woo his co-worker Millie. But Agnes secretly sabotages the blossoming relationship because of her/its own feelings.

A Smart Home (Gone Haywire)

“A Thing About Machines” isn’t an especially well-loved episode. It feels a bit more action based in a way that hasn’t aged well, with various appliances rising up against their cruel owner Bartlett Finchley.

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