CBS purchased the teleplay in 1957 from writer Rod Serling. Serling hoped it to be the pilot of a weekly anthology series.
The Time Element was purchased only to be shelved indefinitely, and talks of making The Twilight Zone a television series ended.
This is where things stood when Bert Granet, the new producer for Westinghouse Desilu Playhouse, discovered The Time Element in CBS' vaults while searching for an original Serling script to add prestige to his show. The episode (introduced by Desi Arnaz) debuted on November 24, 1958, to both fan and critical praise. "The humor and sincerity of Mr. Serling's dialogue made 'The Time Element' consistently entertaining," wrote Jack Gould of The New York Times. After six thousand letters of praise flooded CBS, they again began talks with Serling about the possibilities of producing The Twilight Zone. Where Is Everybody? was accepted as the pilot episode and the project was announced in early 1959. The rest is history.
I have this little seen episode on my mind because of the just announced 1080p Blue Ray edition of Twilight Zone's first season. An HD transfer of this episode will be just one of its extras.
You can watch the rest of it here.