Look Homeward, Ray
Production Number: 75003 [1986 - ABC Season One]

As Ray prepares to board a train for a trip back to his hometown of Morrisville, the other three ghostbusters race to the station to meet up with him. They hand him some newspaper articles, scrapbooks, and film reels that he can use to impress the people back home. Ray insists it's just a little celebration, nothing big, but Peter says it's not every day that he gets to be "Grand Marshall" in the "Winged Puma Parade", which Egon explains is held once every 10 years to celebrate the fact that no one has seen the monster for hundreds of years. Slimer also shows up and hands Ray a Stay Puft Marshmallow Man doll before he leaves.

Later, in Morrisville, the mayor is dedicating a party to their local hero, Ray Stantz, but he gets his name wrong and calls him "Roy Stantz". Just as Ray corrects him, a woman named Elaine Fermon comes running through the crowd to tell Ray that she had been following all his adventures in the news. Elaine is apparently Ray's old girlfriend, or at least someone he once had a crush on.


The reunion is cut short when a loudmouthed guy in a suit comes barreling onstage to ask Ray if he remembers him. He introduces himself as Alan Favish and explains how everyone in Morrisville thought Ray would amount to nothing, while Alan would make it big. But now Ray is the hero while Al only owns a "2-bit shoe store". Ray reassures Al that "shoes have their place, too", to which Al replies, "Yeah! On the feet!" Al also explains that the old Powell Mansion that used to scare them as kids has been inherited by Elaine. But Elaine can't sell it because it's still haunted. Upon hearing the word "haunted", Ray takes off his overcoat and gets out his ghostbusting equipment.


Within moments, everyone has arrived at the Powell Mansion. Ray uses the PKE Meter to get a reading and concludes that the ghosts inside aren't very powerful. Nothing to be afraid of. He tells the ghosts he'll give them to the count of three to come out.


Meanwhile, back at his shoe store, Al Favish opens up a book of magic spells that he has hidden on a storeroom shelf and turns to a page about "Negative Energy". He chants a spell, which causes a cloud of energy to fly out of the book and all the way to the Powell Mansion. The energy hits the two rather meek-looking ghosts and transforms them into gigantic, ferocious monsters.

The ghosts break out of the mansion and proceed to destroy everything at the fun fair. Ray attempts to use a proton beam on them, but it does no good.


The female ghost picks Ray up and stuffs him into a trash can. Then both ghosts head back into the Powell Mansion. Ray seems optimistic about trying again, but the mayor is really upset. The ghosts destroyed everything and they spent all their money paying for the parade. They can't afford the repairs. The mayor blames Ray because the ghosts never left the mansion before he got them mad.


As Ray is getting chewed out, Al Favish appears and offers to pay for the repairs in the interest of "good citizenship". The mayor calls Al "the real hero" and names him the parade's "New Grand Marshall" for his generosity.


Later that night, Ray returns to Ghostbusters HQ, earlier than the others expected. He tests out his equipment to see why it didn't work, but it seems like there's nothing wrong with it. After Peter teases him a bit about "making a fool of himself" in front of the whole town, Ray laments that it would be stupid to go back and try to prove something. Peter makes a bet with Winston that he will end up going back anyway.


And Peter was right, as later that evening, Ray has somehow ended up back in Morrisville, walking alone towards the Powell Mansion. Along the way, Elaine finds him and accidentally scares him up a tree.


Back at the firehouse, Egon has found a note from Ray stating that he has gone back "for a showdown". Winston now owes Peter 5 bucks, and they head out in Ecto-1 for Morrisville. Meanwhile, Ray has entered the mansion alone and confronted the two ghosts.


But once again, the proton beam proves ineffective, and the ghosts start having a little fun tossing Ray around the room. Outside the house, the other Ghostbusters have finally arrived in Ecto-1. Elaine tells them that Ray is in the mansion alone with the monsters.


Ray is still being thrown around as the other Ghostbusters enter the building to assist him. In the bushes outside, Al appears with his spellbook again and chants another spell.


This time the spell takes the energy away from the ghosts, and reverts them back to their original state. The energy ball travels out of the mansion to a street somewhere in Morrisville and buries itself into the ground.


In their weakened forms, the ghosts are no match for the proton beams now and are quickly put away by Peter, Winston, and Egon. Since no one is yet aware of what's going on with Al and his spellbook, Ray blames himself for not being able to capture the ghosts and abruptly quits the team.


As Ray runs outside he crosses paths with Al Favish again, who jogs by in a terrible outfit. Al says that he overheard Ray saying he's quit the ghostbusters and offers him a job in his shoe store. Yeah, a job as "Hoppy the Boot Bunny".


Peter and Winston attempt to convince Ray to rejoin the ghostbusters, but Egon insists that they are wasting their time and asks them to leave the shoe store. Egon thinks that talk is useless with the way Ray feels right now and has a better plan to win him back.


Moments later, Ray is tending to a customer when he hears a commotion outside the store. Looking out the window, he sees Ecto-1 being pursued by a rather strange-looking ghost.


The Ecto-1 eventually becomes stuck in a mud puddle. When the ghostbusters emerge to battle the monster, it uses vines to snare their proton guns.


Things look pretty bad until it's... Ghost Bunny to the rescue! Unfortunately, an ice cream truck also shows up at the same time and the mystery ghost reveals itself to be Slimer in disguise. Realizing he's been tricked, Ray again gives up and returns to the shoe store.


While dealing with a particularly tough customer, Elaine shows up at Favish's shoe store to talk to Ray. She explains that she understands that what happened wasn't his fault. He tried his best and that's all that matters. But the impatient customer demands to see more shoes, so Ray and Elaine head to the store room to look for some...


...and that's when they stumble across the spellbook that Al had hidden back there. Ray finally realizes that the reason his equipment didn't work on the ghosts before is because Favish had used a spell to surround them with negative energy, whereas the proton pack uses positive energy. He explains to Elaine that something really bad could happen from using the spellbook. Sure enough, as the parade is going on, Egon's PKE Meter detects a massive buildup of negative energy under the ground.


People scatter in every direction as an earthquake uproots the parade and cracks the streets. A huge ball of negative energy is released from a crack and forms into the shape of a giant winged puma! (Yes, the very one the parade is supposed to be about.)


By the time Ray and Elaine arrive, the Winged Puma has already begun its rampage, breathing fire and destroying everything in sight. Al Favish sees Ray carrying his spellbook and steals it back from him in an attempt to stop the Puma. But the Puma destroys the book with its fire breath, then follows Favish back to his shoe store and stomps it to the ground.


The ghostbusters shoot the Puma with their beams, but just as before, they do no good because of the negative energy surrounding the beast. As the Puma corners them in a dead end alley, Ray distracts it away.


Having reversed the polarity of his proton gun with a screwdriver, Ray shoots at the Winged Puma and the beam finally has an effect on it. The Puma is stung by the beam and takes off flying into the sky. The ghostbusters chase after it... in the giant shoe from Al Favish's parade float attached to a giant Ray balloon (also from the parade).


It doesn't take long for the flying Puma to find them and attack. They shoot at it with their beams, but miss. The Puma takes a deep breath and blows the Ray balloon away.


A hole is blown in the Ray balloon's face and it starts flying backwards out of control. However, the Puma chases after it and everyone fires their proton beams again...


...and this time, they get him. Egon reels in the trap.


And the Ray balloon, giant shoe and all, crash lands safely in a tree. Egon hands the trap with the Puma in it to Ray, and Winston (jokingly) tells him that if he ever tries to quit again, they'll feed him to it.


Back in town, Elaine explains that Al Favish was so jealous of Ray that he had tried to use magic to make Ray look bad. The mayor apologizes and recrowns Ray the "Grand Marshall" of their parade.


But when Ray turns around and sees the float he's supposed to stand on, he's quick to shoot at it with his proton gun, as it looks just like the giant Winged Puma...


But it turns out it was just a fake wireframe model. Oops.

Notes & Trivia

Writer Mark Scott Zicree said he was inspired by episodes of The Twilight Zone where characters go back to their hometown and things go "awry" when he wrote this episode.

The episode's title is a reference to the 1929 classic book by Thomas Wolfe, Look Homeward, Angel about a man who is unable to go back to his hometown.

The Tahiti song, "Hometown Hero" plays when Ray first goes to investigate the Powell Mansion, and again when Ray distracts the Winged Puma away from the other ghostbusters.

When Ray confronts the mansion monsters for the second time, he yells, "Game over, boys! We Ghostbusters never lose!" Kind of funny, because the ghosts look like a husband and wife couple, so I'm pretty sure one is female.

When Ray is first seen in the Boot Bunny costume, he reaches down to grab a proton pack. Despite the fact that he is wearing the pink bunny costume, the scene of just his arms reaching down shows him wearing his normal ghostbusters uniform. Also, right after he picks it up, he speaks his like, "Take this. Maybe you can use it for parts," without moving his mouth.

The "sleeve color glitch" happens again when Ray, in the bunny costume, reaches down to pick up Favish's spellbook.


"Twuck Sreet Twuck" and "Ize Cleem"? At least they got "DRIPPY 1" on the license plate correct.

I love the bandage on the end of the Winged Puma's tail.



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