Night Call Symbolism

882 Words 4 Pages
During the Cold War, Americans were faced with fear of the unknown. Americans were unsure of what the Soviet Union may do and whether or not it would result in nuclear war. Oftentimes life imitates art. This can be done in a painstakingly obvious manner or in a subtle manner. For example, the Twilight Zone episode “Night Call” mirrors the feelings of uncertainty and fear in Americans at the time of the Cold War.
The main character in the episode, Ms. Keen is wheelchair ridden. She lives alone and besides her caretaker, spends most of her days alone as well. When she begins to receive multiple phone calls throughout the middle of the night, she becomes extremely fearful. A Cold War viewer may relate to these feelings of fear if they had a loved one overseas. Unable to know if and when they answer their phone, they would be told nuclear war was imminent. To a viewer, Ms. Keen could symbolize America and the caller may symbolize the Soviet Union. To elaborate, both America and the Soviet Union wanted power. Throughout “Night Call” Ms. Keen wants to dominate the conversation with the caller to find out more information, even though she was fearful. The caller also showed signs of wanting to control the conversation with repeated “hellos” and “I want to talk to you”. Ms. Keen also does not
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Keen does find out the location where the calls were coming from. However, she is still not taken seriously because according to the operator these calls were impossible. Upon discovering that the calls were coming from a cemetery Ms. Keen makes the trip to see for herself. This part of the episode could evoke real life fear of outcomes in viewers. For example, she has not been taken seriously since the beginning of the calls. Much like America may not be taken seriously during the war. The cemetery may then reflect the outcome if the war went from “cold” to hot”. Many lives would be lost, and people could only talk to their loved ones through cemetery

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