The Twilight Zone : I Sing the Body Electric (1962)

Genres - Science Fiction  |   Sub-Genres - Family Drama, Psychological Sci-Fi  |   Run Time - 30 min.  |   Countries - United States   |  
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Synopsis by Hal Erickson

Though he'd originally intended to write several scripts for the original Twilight Zone, Ray Bradbury's sole contribution to the series was this sensitive adaptation of his own short story "I Sing the Body Electric!" Hoping to fill the void left by the death of his wife, a widower (David White) takes his children to Robots Unlimited to purchase an "electric grandmother" for the kids. The younger children (Charles Herbert) and Dana Dillaway) are delighted with their robot granny (Josephine Hutchinson), but older daughter Anna (Veronica Cartwright) is sullen and resentful -- until "Grandma" proves herself to be more human than most humans. Though the episode is generally successful, no one connected with it was satisfied, least of all director James Sheldon, who felt that star Josephine Hutchinson was not quite right in the leading role. In addition, an earlier scene with June Vincent as the kids' aunt Nedra didn't "play" on film, necessitating an expensive reshoot, directed by William F. Claxton, with Doris Packer replacing Vincent. All in all, however, "I Sing the Body Electric!" pleased the crowd when it first aired on May 18, 1962, though a much-later 60-minute TV version, "The Electric Grandmother" (1980), was closer to the spirit of the Bradbury original.

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Keywords

android, grandmother, nanny, widow/widower