Directed by: Ted Gershuny
Written by: Ted Gershuny
Based on a story by: John Sladek
Joan: Marilyn Jones
Richard: Timothy Carhart
Susie: Jamie Ohar
Prof Stillman: Malachy McCourt
A mother takes action against her daughter, who has blamed many recent mishaps on her teddy bear.
Act I Edit
Joan sits down to breakfast with her young daughter Susie, who’s celebrating her birthday. When Joan talks about going to the store afterwards, Susie asks if her teddy bear - appropriately named Teddy - can come as “he needs honey”. Meanwhile, the dad Richard — who runs a secondhand shop — wakes up hungover in bed. When Joan checks on him, he sadly admits he did not get Susie a birthday gift; Joan quickly reminds him that he got Teddy and that he must’ve bought it when he was drunk, explaining his lack of memory. The two then hear a vase break out in the living room; they rush to find Susie standing next to it, but she claims Teddy did it.
Later that night, the parents tuck Susie into bed and read her a bedtime story — Goldilocks and the Three Bears. At the end Susie asks if Goldilocks got eaten by the bears, but Joan denies it by claiming the bears to be “silly little things”. Before going to sleep, Susie wants her mom to kiss Teddy goonight; she does, but becomes uneasy after hearing it growl.
Act II Edit
Bear prints are found on the wall one day. A furious Joan confronts Susie, who once again swears that Teddy did it. She takes her frustrations out on Richard (who drunkenly fell asleep with a lit cigarette on his lap) but they eventually decide they need to help their daughter distinguish what‘s real and what’s not. To prove this point, they show Susie a stuffed bear rug and insist it can’t hurt her since it‘s not real. This seems to work until Susie says “Teddy’s more real than a rug“ before heading off to bed.
The parents take their anger out on themselves — while Richard claims Joan is no help thanks to her focus on a Masters degree, Joan proclaims her annoyance over Richard‘s drunkenness and Susie’s behavior. Richard cuts his hand on his work bench; when Joan tries to help, he backs off and sarcastically quips “Teddy did it.”
Joan comes into her daughters room while she sleeps and examines the bear, who now appears to have glowing red eyes. Another bear growl is heard. Later that night, Joan wakes up to the smell of smoke. She runs into the kitchen to find Susie has made porridge, making a mess out of the kitchen in the process. Joan furiously demands to know why Susie did this, but the poor daughter insists Teddy was hungry and he made her do this.
Act III Edit
Joan invites Professor Stillman to their home. He studies the bear and asks where they got it — they deduce it is an antique and that Richard may have gotten it from a chest at his shop. Joan reveals she invited Stillman here due to his expertise in magic and myth. He then proceeds to tell her about the powerful god-like beings some cultures see bears as. He cites the constellations Ursa Minor (little bear) and Ursa Major (big bear) as examples, while stressing Ursa Major to be “the darkest emblem of death”; Joan is horrified the tiny Teddy could represent something like this, but the Professor insists the appearance of Ursa Major has been significantly reduced thanks to civilization over the years. He hypothesizes Ursa Major is using Teddy to fight back after being dormant for years — a theory Joan finds irrational. He tells her to get rid of Teddy if it makes her so uncomfortable.
Later on, Joan plots to switch Teddy out with a blond doll she names Goldilocks. Richard, who now has a fever from his previous injury becoming infected, doubts this plan will work. Another calamity is heard in Susie’s room — Joan rushes quick to find things thrown around. Despite angry pleas, the only answer Joan can squeeze out of her daughter is “Teddy did it!” With no other choices, Joan switches Teddy for Goldilocks while Susie sleeps and tosses the bear in the trash.
The next morning, Joan tells Susie she took Richard to the clinic and that he may have to stay there until his leg heals. Susie shows more interest in where Teddy is; Joan tells her Teddy is with his family and won‘t be coming back. Susie angrily tells her Goldilocks isn’t the same.
Another bear growl and Susie’s screams wake Joan up later that night. She rushes into her room and finds Susie fearful and Goldilocks ripped to shreds. A perplexed Joan runs to the basement and shockinlgy finds the trash cans mangled with no Teddy in sight. Susie screams once more — Joan runs up to find demonic red-eyed Teddy going after her daughter. She grabs and stabs him with a pair of scissors. After she pulls his stuffing out, the sound of a large angry bear is heard downstairs. Joan attempts to barricade herself and Susie inside the room, but it’s no use — the claws of Ursa Major rip through the door and slash at the walls. Joan can do nothing but scream and hold her horrified daughter tightly in her arms.
- In the scene where Joan and Richard argue in the basement, Richard accidentally cuts his hand. Later on, he catches a fever from the injury, which is now on his leg.