An alien race comes to earth, promising peace and sharing technology. A linguist and his team set out to translate the alien's language, using a book whose title they deduce is "To Serve Man".



(teleplay by), (based on a story by) | 1 more credit »

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Episode complete credited cast:
Michael Chambers
Secretary General
Citizen Gregori
Colonel #1
Colonel #2 (as Carlton Young)
Robert Tafur ...
Señor Valdes
Lomax Study ...
Japanese Delegate (as J.H. Fujikawa)


Michael Chambers recounts recent events on Earth after the arrival of a alien space craft. The aliens, known as Kanamit, seem friendly and assure everyone they have nothing to be afraid of. In fact, they offer to share wonderful technology that will provide limitless energy, cure all disease and convert deserts into lush gardens. For the people of Earth, paradise has arrived. Chambers is an encryption specialist and they try their best to decrypt a book the Kanamit left behind. The book's title seems benign - but it's not what they think it is. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis






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Release Date:

2 March 1962 (USA)  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


Damon Knight's short story;"To Serve Man - which included details on the language-translation cut from the screenplay- was awarded the 1951 "Retro" Hugo Award for Best Short Story in 2001. See more »


In the beginning, when Mr. Chambers presses the button to open the mirror and sink, he misses the button the second time, but the sink opens anyway. See more »


Michael Chambers: [to the audience] How about you? You still on Earth, or on the ship, with me? Well, it doesn't make very much difference because sooner or later we'll, all of us, be on the menu. All of us.
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Referenced in Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Lessons (2002) See more »

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User Reviews

An alien arrives on earth to help stop wars and famine.
18 February 2006 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

This episode of the Twilight Zone is a must see. Bochner and the supporting actors work naturally in under 25 minutes in this teleplay. The story works on our fears and dreams as the alien Kanamits, all wonderfully played by Richard Kiel, tells the earth that they can turn our war and famined ridden world into a "Garden of Eden." The directing and script works so well together that it moves at break neck speed as questions about the Kanamits "good will" unfolds as you unfold them in your own mind. Kiel with bulbous head and darkened eyes doesn't moves his lips as he communicates telepathically. His expressionless face and a tinny Voice Over gives a strange and surreal effect. Good Night Mr. Serling!

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