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"The Bard"
The Bard
Series:The Twilight Zone (Original Series)
Episode:Season 4, Episode 120 (S04E18)
First Aired:May 23, 1963
Teleplay:Rod Serling
Director:David Butler
Music:Fred Steiner
Guest Stars:Jack Weston, John Williams, Burt Reynolds
Lead Character:Julian Moomer, William Shakespeare
Previous Episode:Passage on the Lady Anne
Next Episode:In Praise of Pip

"The Bard" is an episode of the The Twilight Zone.

Episode Details

Opening Narration

"You've just witnessed opportunity, if not knocking, at least scratching plaintively on a closed door. Mr. Julius Moomer, a would-be writer who, if talent came twenty-five cents a pound, would be worth less than car fare. But, in a moment, Mr. Moomer, through the offices of some black magic, is about to embark on a brand-new career. And although he may never get a writing credit on the Twilight Zone, he's to become an integral character in it."

Episode Summary

Julius K. Moomer was a screenwriter that has happened into a dry spell. His scripts had begun to be refused by the executives and he was in desperate need of brilliantly written scripts that would make his bosses pleased. Having overheard a mention of black magic, he decided he had nothing to lose. With a book on black magic, Moomer managed to perform a ritual that conjured up the form of William Shakespeare. Moomer would have the greatest writer that ever lived produce his scripts for television! The first script that Shakespeare created was adored and the unlikely team of "Bill Shakespeare" and Julius Moomer appeared to be a success. This lasted only until the filming of the screenplay began, when they were informed that the sponsors of the production had demanded a great deal of revisions, removing things they felt the viewers—potential customers—might find offensive such as suicide. Shakespeare greatly objected, but was calmed by Moomer. The legendary writer soon was angered once more, when he was introduced to the cast, all of whom were different from his vision. The lead actor introduced the bard to method acting and asked what his motivation might be for walking through a door. Shakespeare struck the young actor, stormed off the set, and out of Moomer's life in anger. Moomer's submitted script is a success with the modern audience. However, he soon finds himself tasked with providing more scripts about American history. Lacking motivation, he again turned to black magic and conjured up historic figures George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, and Pocahontas to assist him with his writing.

Closing Narration

"Mr. Julius Moomer, a streetcar conductor with delusions of authorship. And if the tale just told seems a little tall, remember a thing called poetic license--and another thing called the Twilight Zone."

Production Companies


  • Columbia Broadcasting System (CBS) (1959) (USA) (TV) (original airing)

Memorable Quotes

Main article: List of memorable quotes from the first series



  • Zicree, Marc Scott: The Twilight Zone Companion. Sillman-James Press, 1982 (second edition)
  • DeVoe, Bill. (2008). Trivia from The Twilight Zone. Albany, GA: Bear Manor Media. ISBN 978-1593931360
  • Grams, Martin. (2008). The Twilight Zone: Unlocking the Door to a Television Classic. Churchville, MD: OTR Publishing. ISBN 978-0970331090

External Links

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