An old woman is washing dishes. She looks out the window and across the field to see her long lost son coming home. She and her old husband are thrilled to tears. The family goes to the county fair that night. Others see the son, but they do not see him as the son. Each person sees him as someone different. People start to chase him to say hi, I think. He takes refuge in a church. The preacher sees him as Jesus. He leaves the church. He is surrounded. He is spun around and around by the others. Then,....well, if you know this much, you know the ending. I don't want to ruin it for others.

I have burned out my keyboard searching for this oldie, but goodie. Thanks for reading and considering my questions, which are...What is the name of this episode and from what series does it come?

  • 3
    Please don't miss out spoilers in ident questions. It just makes it harder for people to help you. If you want, you can use the tag >! to hide the words behind a spoiler bar.
    – Valorum
    Jun 15 '16 at 17:18

The story you're describing is "The Martian" from Ray Bradbury's short story collection "The Martian Chronicles". There have been at least two adaptations; The 1980 TV mini-series (described below) and an episode of "Ray Bradbury Theater" from 1992.

It is some years since the original expedition to the Red Planet ended in tragedy. Colonists from Earth have arrived in droves, such as Rafe ( Wolfgang Reichmann ) and Anna ( Maria Schell ) Lustig. One night, in the midst of a storm, they are awoken by what appears to be their dead son, David ( Michael Anderson Jr. ). He offers no explanation for his apparent resurrection. The lonely couple are so glad to have him back they do not press him for answers. But, whilst on a trip to a nearby town, he goes missing. Various people see him as whatever they want him to be. Father Peregrine ( Fritz Weaver ) sees him as 'Jesus Christ' ( Jon Finch ), replete with crown of thorns and bleeding hands. Rafe is so keen to have back his son he is prepared to accept even a Martian lookalike. But 'David' finds himself surrounded by people and, unable to cope with all their thoughts, dies.

Martian Chronicles Mini-Series

The Ray Bradbury Theater - S06E08 - The Martian

  • Obviously, I am unfamiliar with your protocol because I have no idea what your advice is all about. Anyway, thanks for your help. Everything sounds right. I saw a black and white version from the early 60s-ish. It all happened in a half hour. There were no rockets, no images of spacecraft of any kind. The woman was at kitchen sink, not playing the piano. He died the same night he showed up. But, the story is the same. I will use your response as a guide. Cheers!
    – Jon
    Jun 15 '16 at 20:24
  • @Jon What Valorum was saying is that you can hide the text indicated by your ellipsis behind >! and it will be blanked out. It is a device we use to hide spoilers. (BTW, if this is the correct answer you can tick off the arrow.)
    – Cascabel
    Jun 15 '16 at 21:38

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