One of the Angels
Episode No. Season 1
Episode 2
Directed by Robert Parrish
Written by Rod Serling
Featured music Stock (mostly from Bernard Herrmann's "Outer Space Suite")
Cinematography by Joseph La Shelle
Original air date October 9, 1959
Cast Ed Wynn – Lew Bookman
Murray Hamilton – Death
Dana Dillaway – Maggie Polanski
Jay Overholts – Doctor
Previous "Where Is Everybody?"
Next "Mr. Denton on Doomsday"

"One for the Angels" is the second episode of the American television anthology series, The Twilight Zone.



A salesman, Lou Bookman, is told by Death that he is to die at midnight. Mr. Bookman argues that his life's work as a salesman is not quite complete, and convinces Death to give him enough time to give one last, great sales pitch—"a pitch for the angels", as Mr. Bookman puts it. Once Death agrees, Bookman then announces his intention to quit sales and find another line of work.


Although proud of having outsmarted Death and now virtually assured of his immortality, Bookman is informed by Death that someone must die at midnight. Because of this, Death chooses a little girl and friend of Bookman's who lives in the same building, who is then hit by a truck. As she lies comatose, he comes to claim her. Bookman pleads with Death to take him after all, instead of the girl, but Death is adamant; a deal is a deal. However, as they wait for the appointed time, Bookman distracts Death with a sales pitch aimed at him. Bookman is so compelling that Death is too enthralled to claim the girl, instead purchasing all of Bookman's goods. Midnight passes before Death even realizes that he has missed his appointment.

In saving the girl's life, Bookman has willingly sacrificed his own; he has now made that last great sales pitch - "one for the angels", one that could persuade even Death, thus fulfilling the original agreement. Before leaving with Death, Bookman packs up his case of wares, hopefully remarking "You never know who might need something up there." He then uncertainly asks, "Up there?" to which Death replies, "Up there, Mr. Bookman. You made it."



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