Twilight Zone – Healer (10/11/85)

tzhealer10Jackie (Eric Bogosian) is not much of a burglar.  He has just scaled a rope a) in front of a museum on the side facing the street, and b) left the rope dangling behind him.  Maybe that jerk can climb a rope, but I’m smarter. Whoa, gym class flashback.

Jackie — the default name for low-life TV crooks — seems to be looking for something specific.  For reasons unknown and unexplained, he settles on a rock generically-labelled Religious Talisman.  He grabs the rock, but sets off the alarm.  He is shot by a security guard with a similar aptitude for his job, because Jackie still manages to escape out the window and down the rope after being shot.  To be fair, though, the guard arrived in less time than it took Jackie to run to the window.

Jackie is curled up in pain, still clutching the rock when it begins to glow.  A moment later, he pulls up his shirt to reveal his wound has healed.  Back at his apartment, he hears a commotion and discoverers his hairy neighbor neighbor Harry has dropped dead.  Jackie runs home to get the stone.  When he returns, he keeps the stone hidden in his hand as he pretends to heal Harry by the laying on of hands.

Harry later tells Jackie that he had a near-death experience.  He left his body, could see the neighbors, saw the usual bright light.  Jackie has stupidly revealed the rock to him. Harry says, “That baby is going to be our ticket to fame and fortune.”  So suddenly it’s OUR ticket?

tzhealer11In the next scene, after some unspecified period of time, Jackie is in a white suit on a stage.  He has wisely started going by the name Brother John — a faith healer just like the ones on TV; except legitimate.  He is kneeling before a girl in a wheelchair and asks for her to be healed.  The young actress seems like she couldn’t care less. She does at least give a smile when BroJo yanks her out of the chair and she is able to walk.

After he leaves the stage, Harry takes to a podium to ask people to send whatever they can spare so their work can continue.  As theft and misusing sacred powers go, this ain’t really all that bad.  The dope who hid this rock away in a museum is the real criminal.  I’m sure it was put there by top men.  Top Men.

BroJo is actually happy to be helping people whereas Harry is all about the “Love Offerings”.  He wants to expand the program to 90 minutes to help more people, but Harry complains that will eat into their profits.  As he is removing his make-up, BroJo sees a man behind him in the mirror.

tzhealer15Pop Quiz:  Is it a Cop, a Construction Worker, an Indian, a Cowboy, a Soldier, or a Biker?  This is Hollywood — of course, it is the mystical Indian because all Indians have magic powers.  Or, in this case, Mexicans playing Indians as is the actor Joaquin Martinez.[1] He has come to get the Healing Stone which is sacred to his people.  BroJo is ready to return the stone, but Harry refuses.  The Indian, tells him that after this choice, his path might not be pleasant.

BroJo gets a visit from a gangster he worked for 11 years ago.  He has lung cancer and wants BroJo to cure him.  He agrees to cure the mobster for $2 million.  When he tries, though, the rock does not work.  He is worried about the rock not working for that night’s show, so they grab a deaf kid from the audience and bring him backstage.

Like the girl, the young actor shows no emotion at all at the prospect of being cured. BroJo palms the stone and lays on them hands.  Nothing.  The boy’s hearing does not return, but the Indian does.  He says the rock only works for those who heal unselfishly. And it seems to take the power back retroactively — BroJo collapses with his old bullet wound. He hands the rock to the boy and shows him how to heal the wound.  Then he takes the rock back and cures the boy’s deafness.  He then laterals the rock to the Indian, who runs it in for a touchdown.[2]

tzhealer25BroJo walks away from the church. He has a renewed sense of caring for people which will last until his Mafioso pal puts another bullet in his gut for not curing him.


  • [1] Maybe I was too hasty on the Indian thing.  It’s hard to say for sure what they were going for or if they were purposely sending mixed signals.  He did not have a ponytail or braided hair like most Hollywood Indians, and he wore a sarape.  On the other hand, he was wearing beads which you don’t usually see on a Hollywood Mexican.
  • The actor is not much help.  He was born in Mexico City, but his last five roles were Chief, Enrique, Xela, Running Bear and Geronimo.
  • Wikipedia  and Wikia call him a “Native American man”, so it must be true.
  • [2] Thus exhausting my knowledge of sports.
  • Available on YouTube.

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