The Ray Bradbury Theater

Season 5 Episode 9


Aired Unknown Nov 02, 1990 on USA

Episode Recap

Sam Brown is delivering the mail and arrives at the house of his neighbor Clara Goodwater. When she asks if he has the books that she ordered, Sam lies and nervously says that he doesn't, and then leaves. Meanwhile, his wife Elmira cuts herself and calls out for the neighbor boy, Tom, who is mowing her yard. When Sam returns home, Elmira complains that she keeps suffering accidents and notices the book that Sam had for Clara. He admits that he opened the package and peaked, and Elmira realizes that it's a book on witchcraft. When Sam admits that he's read Clara's mail and she's ordered similar books, Elmira figures that Clara has been a witch for years.

Elmira goes to see Clara and insists that Tom come with her as a shield of righteousness. She trips on the way over and claims that Elmira did it. When they arrive, Elmira has Tom ring the doorbell for her. He refuses and she rings the doorbell, and Clara comes up behind them. Clara laughingly admits that she knew Sam has been reading her mail, and tells Tom to run along while the ladies have tea. Elmira tells Tom to wait for her and warn Sam if she doesn't come out in an hour.

Inside, Elmira complains that the Ladies Honeysuckle Harmony Lodge didn't invite her to their meeting. Clara claims that they thought Elmira was out of town visiting her mother and didn't invite her. She jokes about being a witch and Elmira asks if she used her supernatural powers to become the president of the Ladies Club lodge. Clara claims that she bought the books for her nephew and isn't a witch, but Elmira points out she collects roots and spices. Clara jokingly says that she uses them to fly and Elmira warns her that she's going to bring a gold cross to the next lodge meeting when they hold their yearly election for president. Clara points out that Elmira keeps nominating herself each year but she's the only who votes for her. Elmira insists that Clara has used witchcraft to stop her, and Clara offers to nominate and vote for her. Elmira refuses the vote of a black witch and complains about how she's been sick or injured every year, but Clara points out that she's been accident-prone for years. Her neighbor insists that she's been enchanted and Clara finally tells her she's going to cast a spell of invisibility on her. Elmira runs out and stops at the mirror. She's relieved to see that she's still visible, but then realizes she now has a gray hair. As Clara orders her out, Elmira says that she won't stop. Outside, she tells Tom to come with her tomorrow to the lodge meeting so he can protect her. Elmira is so distracted that Tom has to pull her out of the path of a car.

At home that night, Elmira complains to her husband about all the things that Clara has done to her. The next morning, she wakes up and discovers she has a pimple on her head. Elmira reads some books of her own and mixes up a potion of various noxious herbs and liquids, a potion designed to counter black magic.

Elmira and Tom arrive at the lodge and Clara calls the meeting to order. Elmira drinks the potion from her thermos and then staggers to the front of the stage. The potion makes Elmira ill, and she tries to warn everyone that Clara is a witch but now they can vote freely because of the potion. Elmira glares at Clara and seemingly sees her taking out a hatpin and stabbing it into a voodoo doll. Elmira calls for the vote and everyone votes against her. Nauseous, she tries to make her way to the bathroom but goes out the exit door instead and falls off the porch. Everyone runs to check on her, and Clara promises that she won't practice witchcraft any more. Elmira is elected unanimously and goes back into the lodge as the woman sing in praise of her. As she goes to the podium, she doesn't notice Clara studying a hatpin and smiling.