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Twilight Zone

by

Golden Earring



Songfacts®:  You can leave comments about the song at the bottom of the page.

Right out front, note that this song has nothing to do with Manhattan Transfer's "Twilight Zone." One is not a cover of the other. This is the "Twilight Zone" written by Golden Earring's lead guitarist George Kooymans. He was inspired not by the famous TV series of the same name, but by the Robert Ludlum novel The Bourne Identity, which would later be turned into a popular movie.

The song and especially the video tell the story of an espionage agent, on the run from enemy spies before being cornered. The cover of the album Cut (from which this was the only single) shows a scene repeated in the video, of a bullet slicing through the Jack of Diamonds playing card. The card is supposed to represent the rogue agent.
Interestingly, there was at least one episode of the original Twilight Zone TV series which was also a spy drama. Namely, episode #149 from season five, "The Jeopardy Room," is about a Soviet KGB agent who wants to defect, but he ends up pinned in a hotel room under surveillance from a hit man and his accomplice, who sadistically make him play a game for his life. And it's one of the few episodes where a gun is fired - "When the bullet hits the bone," indeed!
Get ready for a nostalgia blast: This song was also used as the theme to the Twilight Zone pinball machine. This was part of Bally Midway's series of "Superpin" arcade pinball games that were based on TV shows - other pinball games in the series were based on Star Trek and The Addams Family.
Fittingly, this song is also sometimes used as bumper music for the radio show Coast to Coast AM, the all-night paranormal talk show which also more frequently uses "A Hazy Shade of Winter."
The video is yet another whose early airplay on MTV paid off. In MTV Ruled the World - The Early Years of Music Video, Rick Springfield talks about the MTV Effect: "The difference that I saw was, before MTV, you'd have to be on like your third successful album before people started recognizing you at the airport. But once MTV hit, you had that one hit single, and you were as recognizable as if you were around for three or four years. It was so instant. That was the power of television.
Golden Earring
More Golden Earring songs
More songs that are also the names of TV shows
More songs inspired by books
More songs in heavy rotation in the early days of MTV

Comments (1):

This song is just sick. Even my 15 year old thinks it's amazing. Love the Trivia about the Bourne Novels. My favorite series of spy novels. Pretty cool.
- Cher, Tampa, FL
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