Mr. Rogers is a recently widowed man with three lonely young children, Tom, Anne and Karen. The children’s aunt tells Rogers that they need a mother not a babysitter but he doesn’t have an answer for that. Tom shows his father an advertisement in a science magazine that announces robot grandmothers. The family goes to the factory and learn that they can design a grandmother to look and sound exactly as they want her. All are excited by the idea except for Anne who is angry at her mother for abandoning her (by dying). Their electronic grandma proves to be lovable, wise and fun. Everybody in the house is charmed by her except Anne who runs angrily out the door to escape.
When Grandma catches up to Anne, she tells her that she doesn’t want to have anyone else leave her. Grandma tells Anne that she’ll never leave but the girl doesn’t believe her and runs into the street. A speeding truck is on a collision course for Anne when Grandma shoves her out of the way and is struck instead. Mr. Rogers is there to carry his daughter out of the street where she cries hysterically. The truck driver is panicked when he sees Grandma sprawled in front of his truck but suddenly her programming resets and she gets up none the worse for her collision.
When Anne sees that her Grandma is indestructible a great fear leaves her and she embraces the robot. Then we see the life of the children and their robot grandma and all the happiness she shares with them. When finally, all three children have reached college age Grandma tells them she is returning to the factory to receive a new assignment or maybe e disassembled for parts. She tells them that at some point she would be in a room with the other grandmas sharing wisdom. And finally, she said that maybe in a few hundred years of service she would be granted the dream of becoming really alive. Then the children tell her that she already is really alive now. Then she tells them to go upstairs so she can leave without any sad goodbyes.
Serling got Ray Bradbury to adapt his short story for television. But both versions are very strange. It is a very original concept but it’s odd. For originality I’ll give it a B+ but it won’t click for all tastes.