The Twilight Zone (1985–1989)
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The Toys of Caliban 

Elderly Ernie Ross and his wife Mary live in fear of their son Toby, who has the magical ability to turn any imagined item into reality.


Thomas J. Wright


Rod Serling (created by), Terry Matz (story by) | 2 more credits »


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Episode cast overview:
Richard Mulligan ... Ernie Ross
Anne Haney ... Mary Ross
David Greenlee David Greenlee ... Toby Ross
Alexandra Borrie Alexandra Borrie ... Mandy Kemp
Earl Houston Bullock Earl Houston Bullock ... Minister (as Earl Bullock)
Richard Biggs ... Dr. Tomson


Elderly Ernie Ross and his wife Mary live with their son Toby in a house with boarded up windows, no television, and all books and magazines locked up and covered by sheets. Its dinnertime, and Toby (who is obviously mentally challenged) doesn't want to finish his vegetables, he wants donuts. Ernie finally gives in, but before he can show Toby a PICTURE of donuts, Toby shouts "COME" and donuts magically appear. This is alarming to Ernie and Mary, because he can now remember the donuts and conjure them up without seeing a picture of them first. Later that night, Toby is rushed to the hospital with a severe stomach ache - apparently he has been conjuring donuts - all the donuts he can eat and more, in secret in his room. After his stomach is pumped and he is in a hospital bed, the nurse is distressed when Ernie takes away a copy of Time Magazine left in the room, not only refusing to let Toby see it, but refusing to let Toby even look out the window. A social worker is called, but ... Written by big_guy

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Release Date:

4 December 1986 (UK) See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


The title is a reference to the lonely monster in Shakespeare's "The Tempest". See more »


References The Twilight Zone: It's a Good Life (1961) See more »

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User Reviews

Leaves a nasty taste in the mouth
12 June 2015 | by Leofwine_dracaSee all my reviews

THE TOYS OF CALIBAN is an unsettling and rather unpleasant episode of THE NEW TWILIGHT ZONE. It concerns an elderly couple who've been patiently bringing up their son who suffers from learning difficulties (to say the least). Not only that, but the boy possesses a magical gift to make anything he sees come to life, which spells havoc for everybody.

I didn't care much for this story at all, what with its jokey tone and feel, the poor performances, and the one-dimensional characters. Certainly there's no element of horror at any stage. What I did find offensive was the depiction of the mentally retarded child, which is done in extreme bad taste and left me feeling depressed.

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