M is for (The) Masks
Season 5, Episode 25The Masks (20 Mar. 1964)
When his doctor tells him that he could die at any moment, the wealthy Jason Foster gathers his heirs including his daughter Emily Harper, her husband Wilfred and their children Paula and Wilfrid Jr. Jason doesn't think much of any of them and it's clear they can't wait to get their hands on his fortune. It's Mardi Gras time in New Orleans and he has one last request - for each of them to wear a carnival mask. Each of the masks is meant to reflect some aspect of their personality - and leave a lasting impression on them. IMBd Written by garykmcd
Musings: Growing up with single mom trying to make ends meet for her four kids she used to jokingly say, "If only I had been born rich instead of beautiful." After watching this episode of The Twilight Zone, I agree with her, beauty is always better. But not just an external beauty, a inner beauty that allows one to love their true selves for that is the only way one finds real satisfaction. In Shakespeare's Hamlet Polonius states, "To thine own self be true." It is quite possible that was the goal of wealthy Jason Foster when he forced his family to wear those maske. Perhaps he reminded his family of it daily, but only through death and some unique Madri Gras masks that he's finally able to help his family be true to themselves.
T.Z. Trivia: The Masks was directed by Ida Lupino, who also starred in the first-season episode The Sixteen-Millimeter Shrine. She was the only person in the history of the original Twilight Zone to have acted in one episode and directed another. She was also the only woman to direct a Twilight Zone episode.
How do you stay true to yourself? Do you wear any masks to hide your true self? Would you have worn Mr. Foster's masks?