Follow TV Tropes


Recap / The Twilight Zone S 1 E 33 Mr Bevis

Go To

Rod Serling: In the parlance of the 20th Century, this is an oddball. His name is James B. W. Bevis, and his tastes lean toward stuffed animals, zither music, professional football, Charles Dickens, moose heads, carnivals, dogs, children, and young ladies. Mr. Bevis is accident prone, a little vague, a little discombobulated, with a life that possesses all the security of a floating crap game. But this can be said of our Mr. Bevis: without him, without his warmth, without his kindness, the world would be a considerably poorer place, albeit perhaps a little saner...Should it not be obvious by now, James B. W. Bevis is a fixture in his own private, optimistic, hopeful little world, a world which has long ceased being surprised by him. James B. W. Bevis, on whom Dame Fortune will shortly turn her back, but not before she gives him a paste in the mouth. Mr. James B. W. Bevis, just one block away from the Twilight Zone.

Air date: June 3, 1960

A guardian angel grants a man a chance for a worst-day-to-best-day do over, but at a cost.

Rod Serling: Mr. James B. W. Bevis, who believes in a magic all his own. The magic of a child's smile, the magic of liking and being liked, the strange and wondrous mysticism that is the simple act of living. Mr. James B. W. Bevis, species of 20th Century male, who has his own private and special Twilight Zone.


This episode provides examples of:

  • The Alleged Car: The titular character drives one, a 1924 Rickenbacker that backfires constantly.
  • Be Careful What You Wish For: Played With. While the "improved" day is definitely not to Bevis's liking, he actually never wished for anything. Hempstead, his angel, suggested to try the day again, and arranged how everything would work then.
  • Bittersweet Ending: Bevis did lose his job and his apartment, but he is quite happy and optimistic.
  • Cloudcuckoolander: Bevis is an eccentric, accident prone man who loves zither music and stuffed animals and drives a 1924 Rickenbacker. He is beloved by the neighborhood children and many other locals but his idiosyncrasies mean that he has had eleven jobs in the last eleven months.
  • Drowning My Sorrows: What Bevis does after being fired.
  • Advertisement:
  • Friend to All Living Things: Bevis. The children and his coworkers all love him.
  • Guardian Angel: J. Hardy Hempstead has been the guardian angel of multiple Bevis family members since one of them, hundreds of years before, performed an unspecified heroic act that earned such an angel as a reward.
  • Humiliation Conga: Bevis's bad day. He loses his job. His car crashes...while nobody's in it. He gets evicted from his apartment.
  • Identical Ancestor: Mr. Hempstead shows Bevis three prior generations of Bevises (Magellan Bevis, Parnell Bevis and his uncle Gunner Lou Bevis), all of whom are likewise played by Orson Bean.
  • Invisible to Normals: Guardian Angels can only be seen by whoever they protect, it seems.
  • Organ Grinder: An organ grinder adds a little color to the street.
  • Poorly Disguised Pilot: This episode was the pilot for a sitcom that was never made.
  • Ripple Effect-Proof Memory: Bevis and his angel are the only ones to remember what things were like before.
  • Tuckerization: Bevis' ancestors include Magellan Bevis, a 16th Century explorer, and Parnell Bevis, a member of the British Parliament who fought for Home Rule for Ireland.
  • Running Gag: Bevis seems to be the only person (or angel) in this universe to like zither music.
  • Set Right What Once Went Wrong: What the angel promises Bevis. Of course, Bevis finds that his attempt actually made his life worse, and he is happy to see things returned to their original state.

Example of: