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The Ray Bradbury Theater: Marionettes, Inc.

A man receives cryptic messages and is offered the opportunity to buy a robot replica of himself to take his place while he lives the life he always dreamed.

Episode Info  

Episode number: 1x1
Airdate: Tuesday May 21st, 1985

Director: Paul Lynch
Story: Ray Bradbury
Teleplay: Ray Bradbury

Guest Stars
James CocoJames Coco
As Braling (John Raleigh Braling)
Leslie NielsenLeslie Nielsen
As Fantoccini

Co-Guest Stars
Jayne EastwoodJayne Eastwood
As Mrs. Braling (Marjorie Braling)
Kenneth WelshKenneth Welsh
As Crane
Rex HagonRex Hagon
As Buyer
Laura HenryLaura Henry
As Secretary
Tom ChristopherTom Christopher
As The Other Braling
Main Cast


Computer salesman John Braling settles down to breakfast with his talkative yet shallow wife Marjorie. He secretly takes antacid and leaves for work as she nags him about everything out of concern for his health. Braling arrives at work and his secretary informs him that a man has been calling but refuses to leave his name. He files the number with a pile of others and turns on his computer, only to receive a transmission from a company calling itself Marionettes, Inc. It has a complete file on Braling and prints out its logo on his printer, including its motto, "We Shadow Forth."..

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Episode Notes
The series began on HBO with this episode.

Story based on "Marionette's, Inc.", first published in Startling Stories (March 1949). The story also appears in the book, The Illustrated Man (1951).

Episode Quotes
Host: It's a new age. Even the coffee machines are talking to us. Maybe the next thing will be they'll tell us not only what to drink, but when to drink. But what if they're wrong. I wonder if old Geppetto had any idea of what notions he let loose on the world.

Changes from the short story:

* The character of Fantoccini, and the company motto, "We Shadow Forth," are taken from Bradbury's "I Sing the Body Electric."
* The first half of the episode is new material: the short story begins with Braling already having purchased his duplicate.

Other Episode Crew

CreatorRay Bradbury
DeveloperMark Massari
Executive ProducerRay Bradbury  |  Larry Wilcox  |  Michael MacMillan
ProducerSeaton McLean
EditorGeorge Appleby
CastingDiane Polley
Line ProducerGillian Richardson
First Assistant DirectorMichael Zenon
Second Assistant DirectorElizabeth Scherberger
MusicBruce Ley
Costume DesignerEileen Kennedy
HairstylistJenny Bennicke
Make-upMarlene Aarons
GripIan McGeagh Henderson
Key GripMark Silver
Set DecoratorElinor Rose Galbraith
Location ManagerMichael Brownstone
Transportation CoordinatorJeff Steinberg
Property MasterPeter Fletcher
Production AssistantNancy Nickel
Script SupervisorJoanne Tolley-Harwood
Production CoordinatorSandie Pereira
Assistant EditorJay Houpt
Re-Recording MixerJack Herren
GafferAdam Swica
Director of PhotographyThomas Burstyn
Art DirectorDavid Moe
Post Production CoordinatorSusan Gerofsky
Sound EditorArnold Stewart
Sound MixerJohn P. Megill
Third Assistant DirectorWendy Ross
Boom OperatorJack Buchanan (2)
Set DresserDanielle Fleury
Best BoyDavid McNicoll  |  Tom Bate
Second CameraPaul Mitchnick
ElectricianGeoffry Pye
Assistant Sound EditorDaphne Ballon (2)
Foley ArtistAndy Malcolm
Assistant Art DirectorNancey Pankiw
Wardrobe MistressJudith Gostick
Construction ManagerKirk Cheney
Still PhotographerMichael Courtney (2)
Assistant GripGreg Palermo
Assistant Location ManagerWoody Sidarous
Second Camera AssistantBrian Gedge
1st Camera AssistantMalcolm Cross
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