Ray Bradbury Theater – The Black Ferris (S4E4)

As in Wheel.  Ferris Wheel.  I have no explanation for the truncated title.

Ten year old Hank watches Mr. Cooger from the carnival get on the black Ferris Wheel.  As it spins backwards, Cooger’s laugh goes higher in pitch and we see a young boy get off of the ride wearing an identical suit in a petite size.

Hank follows the boy back to Mrs. Foley’s house where he has been taken in much like Willie in Hail and Farewell.  Apparently when Bradbury was young, you could adopt any kid who came to your door.

Hank recruits his friend Pete to come see this miracle.  Sure enough, they get to the closed carnival just in time to see Cooger again board the ride as a man and get off as a boy.  Fortuitously, Cooger’s clothes shrink down along with his body.

He once again runs to Mrs. Foley’s house where the boys think he is planning something against the old lady.  They tell her their concerns, including the miraculous Ferris Wheel, but she runs them off and threatens to tell their parents.

rbtblackferris05Hank goes home and is grounded.  He calls Pete and they agree to spy on the boy at Mrs. Foley’s house.  To be sure he doesn’t sneak out, his father bizarrely orders him to strip.

Pete shows up in the pouring rain at the Foley house.  Hank shows up a few minutes later.  He has outsmarted his father by sneaking out of the house and running across the neighborhood completely naked. This is really creepy and Pete is not nearly as mortified as he should be at his naked friend.

Turns out the boys were right.  Cooger Jr. steals Foley’s jewelry and high-tails it back to the carnival.  The boys — Hank now wearing Pete’s raincoat — pursue him back to the carnival.

Cooger Jr. is able to make it back to the Ferris Wheel where Igor begins the spin cycle to age him back to adulthood.  And not only does he turn back into a man, he also somehow acquires a fabulous hat and carnation in the transformation.

rbtblackferris13Hank is quite the kid and jumps Igor causing the wheel to spin out of control.  Cooger rapidly ages like Walter Donovan, or Walter Jameson. Or Barbara Walters, for that matter. When the Ferris Wheel comes to a stop, the bag of jewelry falls from his cold dead hand.

So Hank is quite the hero for figuring out this ruse.  I just hope he can live with the fact that he really executed Cooger for the robbery when he interfered with his attempt to age back to adulthood.  I have no problem with it, I just hope he is OK with it.


  • Something Naked This Way Comes.
  • A three-peat for Roger Tompkins who has directed the last 3 episodes.

One thought on “Ray Bradbury Theater – The Black Ferris (S4E4)

  1. “The Black Ferris” – Bueller? Thankfully, not.

    I am not discriminatory whatsoever , considering my own diverse background, however that thought came to mind concerning the title. Some things should just be left “As Is,” for instance “The Honeymooners” film from 2005. I would elect to be Drawn & Quartered before that film ever enters my DVD player.

    All that aside, two comments on the episode:

    “Stop The Wheel” was said Way too often.

    That silly Carnival music was played to death throughout the entire episode.

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