The Dick Van Dyke Show: Season 2, Episode 20

It May Look Like a Walnut (6 Feb. 1963)

TV Episode  -   -  Comedy | Family
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Rob enjoys a scary televised sci-fi movie while Laura cowers in fear from it, but the next day details of that movie, where Earthlings are being taken over, appear to be coming true.



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Title: It May Look Like a Walnut (06 Feb 1963)

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Episode cast overview:
Larry Mathews ...


A terrifying science-fiction TV program grips Rob while Laura cowers under her bed covers, trying in vain to ignore the show and its blood-chilling music. When the show ends, Rob further tortures Laura by acting out the tale of Kolak, a visitor from the planet Twilo who resembles Danny Thomas and deploys walnuts to destroy Earth's technological capacity by excising all Earthlings' thumbs and imaginations. Rob awakes in the morning to a living room strewn with walnuts and an eerily calm Laura preparing scrambled walnuts for Rob's breakfast. Is Rob dreaming, is Laura having her revenge, or is the valiant comedy writer the only one who can save the planet from descending into the pit of man's fears? Written by David Stevens

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Comedy | Family





Release Date:

6 February 1963 (USA)  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


This very popular entry in the series was a satire of Twilight Zone (1959) and is famous for the scene where Mary Tyler Moore comes flying out of the closet on a sea of walnuts. See more »


After the famous closet scene (done in one take), Rob gets the feeling that he is dreaming and asks Laura to hit him to wake him up, but he says, "I gotta get my thumb backs!", not "...thumbs back", most likely due to not wanting to have to re-shoot a cumbersome scene. See more »


Robert 'Rob' Petrie: Oh, what a nightmare! What a night... I dreamed that I was a Twylo-ite. And I lost my sense of humor and my thumbs!
Robert 'Rob' Petrie: [looking at his thumbs] Oh!
[kisses them fervently]
Laura Petrie: I dreamt that Danny Thomas was chasing me and throwing walnuts at me, and every place he'd hit me I'd lose a thumb and grow an eye!
See more »


References Road to Singapore (1940) See more »

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User Reviews

My Favorite Episode!! "I have perfect 20-20-20-20 vision".
20 January 2007 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

(Spoilers) The Dick Van Dyke Show episode "It may look like a Walnut" was one of a few 'dream-themed' episodes. I don't remember all of the details, but in the dream, Danny Thomas (as himself) is really an alien from a planet filled with walnuts. They don't have thumbs, but have four eyes (literally). I think they were supposed to change all humans into aliens like them. It was a little like "Invasion of the Body Snatchers".

If you are reading this review and have never seen the episode, I'm sure the plot sounds completely ridiculous and silly, but it is so well done, that it actually comes off as being very scary! No real special effects are used or needed. Rob's reactions to seeing the mutations are very convincing. At some point, everyone has been transformed except Rob, giving the viewer a feeling of isolation, which is usually associated with real nightmares.

This episode does an excellent job of creating a 'nightmarish' feeling, with its eerie background music, deep black and white image, and convincing performances by all, including special guest star Danny Thomas. Its as creepy as any of the best classic Twilight Zone episodes, and in fact is more effective, because we are so familiar with the characters involved.

In the episode's conclusion, Rob is awake with Laura, who states that she had just had a nightmare as well. I always have a feeling of relief, just like waking up from a real nightmare.

Oh, and the episode also has some very good funny moments as well. A perfect blend of humor and horror!

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