The Prime Mover

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"The Prime Mover"
The Twilight Zone episode
Prime Mover Twilight Zone 1961.jpg
Christine White, Dane Clark, Buddy Ebsen and Jane Burgess
Episode no.Season 2
Episode 21
Directed byRichard L. Bare
Written byCharles Beaumont (based on an uncredited and unpublished story by George Clayton Johnson)
Featured musicStock
Production code173-3647
Original air dateMarch 24, 1961
Guest appearance(s)
Episode chronology
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"Long Distance Call"
The Twilight Zone (1959 TV series) (season 2)
List of The Twilight Zone episodes

"The Prime Mover" is episode 57 of the American television anthology series The Twilight Zone. It originally aired on March 24, 1961 on CBS.

Opening narration[edit]


Small-time gambler Ace Larsen discovers that his partner, Jimbo Cobb, has telekinetic powers after a car overturns outside their café and Jimbo moves the car without touching it.

Ace plans to use Jimbo's powers to win big in Las Vegas, and he takes his girlfriend Kitty with them. Ace wins many jackpots, disregarding Jimbo's headaches from the use of his powers and his growing moral concerns over what they are doing. Kitty is repulsed and leaves, so Ace uses his newly acquired cash to lure the attention of the casino's cigarette girl and bets the pile in a game of craps, just as Jimbo's powers supposedly "run out"; the loss awakens Ace to the reality of what he has become, and he and Jimbo have a good laugh over their misfortune. The three return home and, back at the café, Ace asks Kitty to marry him just as Jimbo drops his broom, she flips a coin, and Ace calls "heads". Kitty doesn't show Ace the coin or tell him the result of the coin toss; Kitty simply accepts his proposal; as they embrace, Jimbo picks up the broom telekinetically, implying he faked his loss of power to snap Ace out of his greed.

Closing narration[edit]



  • The crash scene was the very same footage used in Thunder Road (1958), the climatic and deadly last scene where Robert Mitchum's character is killed while trying to elude the law.
  • In "The Runaway", an episode of Avatar: The Last Airbender (season 3), Toph duplicates Jimbo's trick of telekinetically manipulating dice and other gambling instruments using her earthbending. She even uses the same gesture—head tipped sideways—as Ebsen uses in this episode.
  • At the end of Star Wars: The Last Jedi, a stable-boy on a casino planet telekinetically picks up a broom, echoing the final scene of this episode.

See also[edit]


  • DeVoe, Bill. (2008). Trivia from The Twilight Zone. Albany, GA: Bear Manor Media. ISBN 978-1-59393-136-0
  • Grams, Martin. (2008). The Twilight Zone: Unlocking the Door to a Television Classic. Churchville, MD: OTR Publishing. ISBN 978-0-9703310-9-0

External links[edit]