Ventriloquist Jimmy Jakes and his dummy, Farmer Joe, have been working together for 25 years. As they finish up their children's show, Joe calls Jimmy a fake. Afterward, Jimmy complains to Joe about his behavior and says that he's out of the act. Joe "glares" at Jimmy and holds a pitchfork, and Jimmy says that he was just kidding around. Staring in horror, Jimmy yells for help.
Later, the Searcher arrives in Hollywood and goes to Jimmy's stage. He peeks in at the Backdraft set and gets set on fire, and then goes to Jimmy's trailer. The Searcher says that he's a big fan and asks where Joe is, and Jimmy says that Joe is trying to kill him. The ventriloquist explains that Farmer Joe is a little person and he found him in an orphanage 25 years ago. Jimmy wants Searcher to find Joe and reason with him, otherwise the bad publicity will destroy his career. When the Searcher wonders where Joie is, Jimmy says that Joe is on the sound stage plotting and scheming,
As the Searcher goes to the sound stage, he figures that Jimmy is having a nervous breakdown. He figures that he'll find the dummy and take it to Jimmy, and make him accept that the dummy is really a dummy. The Searcher looks around the set and remembers his childhood... and tripping over a power cord. Joe is seated on a hay bale, and the Searcher introduces himself. He picks up the dummy and practices his ventriloquism, and tries to find the lever in the back. Joe hits him and says that Jimmy is a dead man. The Searcher warns Joe that he doesn't want to hurt him, and Joe knocks him down and runs off.
When the Searcher wakes up, he prepares to drop a sandbag on Joe... and falls off the railing. When he gets up, the sandbag lands on his head and he falls into a hay baler. Joe impersonates the Searcher's voice, calls Jimmy, and says that he's taken care of Joe. He then calls Jimmy to the sound stage.
When Jimmy arrives, Joe comes at him with a sickle. Jimmy insists that they can work things out, but Joe says that Jimmy has been cheating him for 25 years. The Searcher steps out, having left his boots in the hay bale, and picks Joe up. He says that Joe has been taken advantage of and believes that Jimmy is wrong. The Searcher tells Joe that he wants his dignity, and tells him to tell the world that he's a real live person. Jimmy and Joe agree that it would ruin the act forever, and Joe says that he'll settle for a few bucks and a new house. It's up to Jimmy, and Jimmy agrees. The Searcher tells Joe to release the sickle... and it drops on Searcher's foot.
As Jimmy and Joe drive off, they run over the Searcher and figure that it was a speed bump.
Written by Gadfly on Feb 5, 2017