Charlie Hill is mesmerized by a strange jar at a carnival sideshow. He buys it from the owner, but his wife Thedy Sue is frightened and wants it thrown out. The townspeople come from miles to see it and Charlie becomes a local celebrity.


Norman Lloyd


Ray Bradbury (short story), James Bridges (teleplay)


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Episode cast overview:
Alfred Hitchcock ... Himself - Host
Pat Buttram ... Charlie Hill
Collin Wilcox Paxton ... Thedy Sue Hill (as Collin Wilcox)
William Marshall ... Jahdoo
Jane Darwell ... Granny Carnation
Carl Benton Reid ... Gramps Medknowe
James Best ... Tom Carmody
George Lindsey ... Juke Marmer
Jocelyn Brando ... Emma Jane
Slim Pickens ... Clem Carter
Alice Backes Alice Backes ... Mrs. Tridden
Sam Reese Sam Reese ... Milt Marshall
Marlene De Lamater Marlene De Lamater ... Eva Ann (as Marlene DeLamater)
Billy Barty ... The Barker


A carnival barker sells a jar containing a mysterious, hairy, octopus-like mass to Charlie Hill of Wilder's Hollow for $12.25. He shows it to his wife Thedy, who hates it. Soon everyone from miles around comes to look at the jar and wonder what is inside. Trudy and her paramour, Tom Carmody, conspire with Jahdoo, paying him $1 to steal the jar and shatter it at Heron Swamp. Charlie hurries to the swamp, but gets trapped in quicksand. Jahdoo speculates on the contents of the jar before rescuing Charlie and returning the jar. When Charlie gets home, Thedy tries to break the jar with a spoon. Charlie grabs the spoon and nearly attacks Thedy with it, so she runs away. When she comes back, she says that she visited the carnival, and the carny boss told her the jar is full of junk--wire, clay, paper, cotton, yarn, inner tube, doll's eyes, and silk. Thedy says she will tell everyone, but Charlie likes his new popularity. Written by Lewis O. Amack

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Release Date:

14 February 1964 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


The carnival side show sign reads: "The Magic Jar... What Is It?" See more »


Version of The Ray Bradbury Theater: The Jar (1992) See more »

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User Reviews

The Jar
8 June 2007 | by pmoore-18See all my reviews

I remember seeing this episode as a child of maybe 3. It was one of the few episodes I remember seeing as a child in that series. All the other Hitchcock shows I've seen have been in re-runs as an adult. I never saw the "jar" episode again as an adult. I remember being a bit disturbed by this episode as a child but not bone-chillingly scared like some shows that were on during the 60's. As long as my Mom or Dad was in the room, I thought I had to see some of those programs. However, I sometimes wouldn't sleep too well after watching something creepy. I'd love to see this particular episode again as I'm sure it would be interesting at 46 to view what I thought was a strange & sort of scary episode at 3.

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