The Ray Bradbury Theater

Season 4 Episode 1

The Dwarf

Aired Unknown Jul 07, 1989 on USA

Episode Recap

At the carnival, Mirror Maze owner Ralph Banghart is at the booth of Aimee, who runs a shooting booth. He's showing off his shooting skills and trying to flirt with her. Aimee rejects him and Ralph goes to the Mirror Maze in anticipation of a dwarf that he's nicknamed "Mr. Big" coming by for his nightly visit. Ralph takes Aimee in with him and they watch from the shadows as the dwarf stands before a mirror that makes him appear normal sized. When Ralph whispers that the dwarf comes by every night, the visitor hears him and runs away.

The next night, Aimee watches as the dwarf visits the Mirror Maze again. Ralph stays outside this time and admits to her that he's bored and trying to think up a way to torment the dwarf. When Aimee snaps at him, Ralph hastily claims that he's kidding. When the dwarf leaves, Aimee follows him as he buys a magazine from a vendor. Once he's moved on, Aimee approaches the vendor, who explains that his customer, Bigelow, writes for mystery magazines. Aimee buys one of his magazines and waits outside the diner where Bigelow is eating supper. When he comes out, she follows him but he realizes that she's behind him. He turns and asks why she's following him, and Aimee says that she's a fan. When he wonders which of his stories she likes best, Aimee describes her favorite stories from the magazine.

Touched, Bigelow takes Aimee to the warehouse where he lives. Inside is a giant dollhouse that he's had built. He goes inside and starts typing a new story, one that involves Aimee coming to visit him.

Back at the carnival, Aimee goes to the mirror and examines it, and then pirouettes in front of it. She realizes that Ralph is watching her and calls out to him. He admits that watching is the only thing that he can do and she asks where he bought the mirror. He tells her where and she considers buying one and taking it home so she can privately look at herself. Aimee leaves and Ralph goes to the mirror and considers breaking it. Then he decides to do something else to get revenge.

Later, Ralph comes over to Aimee's booth. She hastily hides the order for a mirror but he knows what she's doing and offers her a card from a deck. Aimee chooses the Ace of Spades and Ralph shows her that the entire deck is the same card, and that he fixed the mirrors the same way he mixed the deck. Ralph gestures to the Mirror Maze where Bigelow is going in. They hear a scream and Aimee runs in to discover that Ralph has replaced Bigelow's mirror with one that makes him even smaller. Bigelow is crouched on the floor in anguish and Ralph smiles in triumph. Aimee slaps Ralph and runs after Bigelow as he leaves. The writer gets a gun from Aimee's booth and comes back in to shoot each mirror that shows a reflection of Ralph. Finally every mirror is broken and only Ralph is left. Bigelow aims at the showman but Aimee stops him and says that Ralph is already dead. Bigelow considers what she's said and then leaves, and Ralph stares in terror. Aimee runs out to watch as Bigelow disappears into the crowd.
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