Dr Atherton, I presume.
- Wait a minute, not so fast. - We're in a hurry, Mr Manley.
Leave your personal things. Just bring your equipment. We depart immediately.
Miguel Higueras, our field assistant.
Sorry I'm late. I've been held up in Caracas for a while with a fever.
Tell the truth, I'm not over it yet.
Be sick on your own time, Mr Manley.
I want close-ups of every specimen
and coverage of the surrounding rain forests and tepuis.
Tepui. It's an Indian word for mountain.
A place where species have survived in isolation for millions of years.
Any man-eating dinosaurs?
Atherton, you're in luck. We're hitting a brand-new one today.
Great. Anybody ever get lost?
Legend says men who climb to the rain desert never return,
but don't worry, we small-game hunters don't climb, we fly!
I hope so. He's our guide.
Twenty-four hour ant.
They kill, Mr Manley, in sufficient numbers.
So do some of the frogs.
Don't touch any.
This is where we're going. We land here, then walk down here.
This is a sinkhole.
A place where thousands of years of streaming water
have torn away the rock.
It's very deep. 2,000 feet.
And dark at the bottom. We'll need flash equipment.
Edible and nutritious enough to survive on for weeks.
Thanks, I'll pass.
Plants your specialty?
Insects and spiders and identifying new ones.
Great. Just what the world needs. More bugs.
What's your speciality, Manley?
Let's forget the fact that no one mentioned poison ants and frogs,
but a 2,000-foot drop? Come on!
This is for the equipment.
Our guide will show us another way down.
What's with him?
This is as far as he'll go.
The air temp's dropped 10 degrees in the last 100 meters.
- You all right? - Yeah.
I'm fine, I just...
What'd he say?
He says you should be careful. You're too big for us to carry out.
What does that thing do, anyway?
Did you ever throw a large firecracker into a pond?
Maybe when I was a kid. Why?
All sorts of stuff floated to the surface.
Prepare yourselves, gentlemen.
For pictures, Manley, pictures.
What is it?
I think it's a new species of butterfly.
We could call it... photius manlii.
Look at these markings.
Don't just sit there.
Are you sure it's dead?
Yes, quite dead.
This is highly unusual.
So many spiders this size in such a confined area.
Look at the shape of the abdomen.
We must try to find a live specimen.
- What do you think you're doing? - It was alive.
Don't be ridiculous.
It's just a spider. What's the big deal?
It isn't just a spider.
It was potentially a new species of spider.
Isolated and unchanged for millions of years.
And all you could do is squash it.
That's impossible. They should be dead.
We'll take two back alive and preserve two.
Are you sure that'll do it?
This stuff will kill an elephant.
Millions of years, then we come along.
How long's it gonna take us to get back to camp?
What's the matter? You still worried about dinosaurs?
This place just gives me the creeps.
These spiders have no reproductive organs.
Almost like worker bees or soldier ants.
Yeah, well, if these are the soldiers, I'd hate to see the general.
How are you feeling?
Like hell. This fever's killing me.
You don't look so good. Take a rest.
Make sure we've got all his film, Higueras.
Have we notified his family?
I contacted the American consulate.
Okay, seal him up.
I really wish you wouldn't complain about my driving.
You're pushing it. That's all I got to say.
Take it easy, wait.
Can you give me a hand here?
I think I'll go move the hearse.
Dick, I'm sorry to pester you in this already difficult time.
I know that we already decided on an open casket,
but we should maybe reconsider.
Because I'm not sure how they work down in South America,
but let me say that their preservation methods differ from ours.
No, you'd be welcome to come down and decide,
but in this already difficult time, I'm not sure I could do that.
No, you do have the option of...
We could put a photograph on top of the casket.
No, the one that you had in the newspaper.
Okay, kids, go stake out your rooms!
Ross, smell that air!
Before we discover what valuables broke in the move,
and that the breakfront doesn't fit,
let's just chant twice:
"We did the right thing."
- For the kids. - For us. For all of us.
- Goodbye crime, goodbye grime. - Right.
Goodbye culture, goodbye friends.
Dad, there's a dead bird over here!
Don't touch it.
Just go on into the house and find your sister.
Ross, the entire town is yours.
You're the doctor. Can there be a more respected figure?
Respect is fine, but actually I've always wanted to be feared.
Easy with that.
You don't want to agitate the sediments.
Château Margaux. $127 a bottle.
At that price, who can afford to drink it?
Goes in the basement.
I mean the cellar.
The wine cellar.
I gotta get a big padlock. Protect my investment.
- What's wrong? - Behind one of the boxes, a spider.
It came at me, it was ugly.
- Bigger than this. - Okay, calm down.
You're in the country now, okay?
Come on, let's go find that spider.
And let's find your mom to take care of that spider.
Honey, we're in the living room. We need you to kill a spider.
All right. Where is it?
Over there, on the box.
Killing a spider, cool!
It's bad luck to kill a spider in a new house.
You just made that up, didn't you, dear?
Okay. Everything's okay.
It's more scared of us than we are of it.
Let's give it a home in the barn.
Good idea, Shell.
Mom, how come you're not afraid of bugs like Dad is?
I'm not afraid of all bugs. Just...
- Be careful of rusty nails. - Chill out.
How about right here?
You sure you won't miss being in the thick of things?
With all those stars and those crickets singing, we are in the thick of things.
I mean work. Strokes from the boss.
Christmas bonuses, office politics, caffeine, adrenaline,
We'll be fine.
Between my severance and all your potential patients, we'll be fine.
When are you meeting with Dr Metcalf?
The old coot passes me the torch at 10.00 sharp.
We can unpack in the morning.
I have some Napoleon brandy in the basement.
Ross, I'm exhausted.
It's bad luck not to make love the first night in a new house.
You just made that up, didn't you, dear?
I have terrific news. At least, I think, for my patients it's terrific.
Though my wife is less than thrilled.
What's that, Dr Metcalf?
I've decided to postpone retirement.
I don't know for how long, but...
But when I thought really hard about it, I realised,
there's only one thing left to do when you retire,
and I've seen too many friends do that very thing
just six months, a year after they gave up their professions.
When we spoke just four months ago, you assured me that...
I'm not ready to retire, doctor.
And if my wife can't rush me into it, you sure as hell can't either.
You gotta feed the meter, partner.
Yeah, well, I was just leaving.
A little late, though.
I do have medical plates.
Oh, right. You're that new doctor.
- Ross Jennings. - Sheriff Lloyd Parsons.
You're a Yale grad, I heard.
Well, it's just a school, isn't it?
That's enough, Lloyd Parsons.
A young doctor comes to Canaima and you write him a parking ticket?
- What are you doing, Ms Hollins? - What the whole town ought to do.
Your ticker tape parade.
- Thank you. - That's littering.
Lloyd's been a bully since the 5th grade.
I ought to know, I held him back.
Walk me to my automobile.
Thank you for the swift intervention.
- How did you know who I was? - We're neighbours.
I gave you a standing ovation when you arrived.
Between you and me, Sam Metcalf only recently gave up leeches.
He also recently gave up retirement.
We moved from San Francisco with the understanding
that I would inherit all of his patients, but now I have none.
No, Dr Jennings, you have one.
Honey, look at this light.
On the best day in the city, we didn't get light like this.
Maybe they'll give me a show in town.
Don't they do that in little towns? In the town hall?
"Molly Jennings, a retrospective."
Of course, I'll need to take some pictures first.
There's good news and there's bad news.
Should we go in reverse-alphabetical order and start with the good?
I'm seeing my first patient this afternoon.
She's a great old dame, she lives just up the road.
Terrific. What's the bad news?
She's my only patient.
Metcalf changed his mind.
- What? - Yeah.
He panicked, is what it is.
He decided that if he retires
he will lose his zest for life and die within 48 hours or something.
But he told you.
We looked in 14 towns, we bought a house,
you rented an office.
What are we going to do?
I have my fax machine. I can work part-time from here.
A phone and a fax, that's all I need. I'll call my old clients.
- Even with half my commissions... - We're gonna be fine.
- Just like you said. - With one patient?
Maybe I'll get lucky and all of her systems will be ravaged by disease.
Kind of like having seven patients in one.
Fit as a fiddle.
Not a damn thing wrong with you.
Dr Jennings, I'm sorry.
What do you mean? Do you think I was hoping you were ravaged by disease?
What about my high blood pressure?
You have above-normal systolic pressure,
which is less dangerous than a diastolic elevation.
And yours is well below a level that requires treatment.
Do I need these?
See, there's a difference between the two types of hypertension.
And in my opinion...
In my opinion, Dr Metcalf doesn't know his ass from a hole in the ground.
But Canaima folks, they're comfortable with him.
They weren't always, though.
When he first hit town just after the war, everyone was terribly standoffish.
- How'd he overcome that? - He threw a party, invited the whole town.
If Sam Metcalf were half as good at medicine
as he is at public relations, he could run for the next surgeon general.
That's it. Next month, when the afternoons are cooler
we'll throw you a party.
So, your one patient, is she a walking health hazard?
I couldn't even find a wart on her.
Great, so what do we do?
Enjoy the fact that since we no longer live in San Francisco,
we no longer have to refer to this as pasta.
- Skinny spaghetti. - Daddy's not done.
On the bright side,
Margaret, my tragically healthy patient,
has offered to throw us a "Get to know Dr Jennings" party.
Daddy's not done.
One cup of punch with the handsome new GP
and the good people of Canaima will see the light and abandon old Doc Metcalf.
- It's a nice gesture. - Yeah.
Can we go play with Bunny?
Yeah, I want you both in before dark, though.
Bunny Beechwood. She popped over this morning.
A neighbour. Seems nice.
What do you bet they're gonna go chase fireflies or something?
- Wanna blow up a bullfrog? - Okay!
I got some great shots in the barn today.
If the camera picks up the web with half the detail my eyes do...
Yeah, our little spider made himself a hell of a home.
I think even you would appreciate it.
Molly... how can I make this more clear?
- I have... - A terrible fear of spiders.
I'm aware, I've seen what happens.
Which is why I think you should force yourself to come and look at the web.
Look at the web?
Yes, and see it for the extraordinary and beautiful thing it is.
We live in the country now.
It's time to work through this irrational, paralysing terror.
- It's not irrational. - I know.
It's like it happened yesterday.
Nobody remembers anything from when they were two.
It's my first memory.
I can envision the crib,
all around me, clear as day.
I can still feel the feeling of waking up.
Just drowsy, peaceful, secure, then there it was.
- Probably just a daddy longlegs. - It seemed huge.
It just came relentlessly, crawling through the bars of the crib.
- As it touched my bare leg... - I know, you were just wearing a diaper.
All my limbs involuntarily froze.
You were probably still half-asleep.
I was paralysed, Molly. I still get paralysed.
Try to understand how this makes me feel.
I was physically unable to stop it from crawling along my naked skin.
I can still feel its hairy little legs just...
Then up to my face.
It's the feeling of utter helplessness.
Being explored by an alien thing, that's all.
Can you blame me for being a spider-phobe?
You see it up there, right beyond the ladder.
There, you see? You still have full use of all your limbs.
Have you seen it up here?
I think you spared the eight-legged Frank Lloyd Wright.
Are you okay? Honey, it's okay!
What the hell was that?
Oh, my God!
# The summer wind came blowing in
# From across the sea
How are you finding life here?
After a few initial shocks, we're slowly adjusting, I think.
I've been checking on you, Ross.
Henry, when I'm finally ready to throw in the towel,
Dr Jennings is your man.
- Henry Beechwood. - Ross Jennings.
- By all accounts, a fine physician. - I'll remember that.
This brings back memories.
Right after the war, when I moved to Canaima,
the whole town threw me a party.
You threw yourself a party.
Now that was a party!
Now that is a jerk!
- Canaima welcomes you. - Thank you.
Listen, I was interested in something.
I wonder if you could give me a little help.
Do you think that I should have this removed?
What's Bunny showing them over there?
Hand-to-hand combat techniques.
So Becky, have you thought about what you'll major in at college?
It's in the genes.
Bobby here, he's the Broncos' star quarterback.
I taught him to throw a football before he could walk.
I coach the team.
Actually, we're Baptists.
Nobody comes up to a mortician at a party and says,
"Irv, you think I might be dead?"
Must drive you nuts trying to dip your Dorito
while somebody's showing you his growth.
How do you handle it?
I just mention that until quite recently my wife was a successful stockbroker.
Say, what do you think about that...
- Why shouldn't I have another? - Because you've had too much already.
- Let's go. - No, I'm thirsty.
That's the Manleys.
Their son recently passed away.
That's awful. How?
I'm not sure. He was a scientist.
He was on a scientific expedition down in...
Nobody'd tell me how.
- Or even let me see him to say goodbye. - Let's go.
I had to recommend a closed coffin.
His body looked all chewed up.
Like some vampire had had a go at him. It was terrible.
I'll be you made enough friends today to break Sam Metcalf's death-grip.
It was wonderful. We can't thank you enough.
Nor I you.
Freeing me from those damn pills.
I feel I could compete in a triathlon.
On the basis of your check-up, I tend to agree.
- Bye-bye, Margaret. - Bye, Molly.
Irv, Claire. Would you like a doggy bag?
We're fine, thank you. Great party, Margaret!
Come on, honey. Party's over.
Happy hunting, Felix. See you in the morning.
You'd have had too much punch and been the life of the party.
I missed you.
I could have killed one of you. The nails came straight...
It's all rotten down there.
My wine cellar is... It's probably crawling with termites.
I'm surprised we haven't fallen through the floor.
I'll call the exterminator.
You're rather casual about the death of my dream.
I've been trying to reach Margaret to thank her
and her line's been busy all morning.
She's probably gabbing.
- You want me to... - Would you?
I'll go over and check on her.
So what do you think, doc?
Bound to happen, rather sooner than later.
She had a history of high blood pressure.
- Even with the pills I put her on... - I took her off those.
What right did you have to do that?
She came to me. As a patient.
You didn't notice she was hypertensive?
Her diastolic reading was normal.
Her systolic elevation was below 160.
- If you'd stayed current... - This is a very serious matter, young man.
- You may well have killed this woman. - I don't think so. She was in fine shape.
- I want an autopsy. - Never.
Look, she was my patient.
And mine for 40 years.
Margaret wouldn't want to be butchered. And nobody here would want that for her.
Give it to me, Irv.
I'm satisfied if you're satisfied, doc.
You come from a big city where people don't care about each other.
I don't expect you'd understand.
A little advice.
If you're ever going to fit in in Canaima,
learn to be sensitive to the feelings of the people here.
I'm sorry I'm more interested in medicine than public relations!
You know, cardiac victims don't usually bite their tongues off.
It's as though she went into titanic convulsions.
Until I know why, this case isn't closed.
You're damn right it's not. I believe you may be guilty of medical malpractice.
And I intend to pursue the matter to its conclusion.
Ross, I understand she was your patient. Your only patient.
Why don't you come by the gym tomorrow at 3.00?
It's a mile up the road from you.
I'll throw some business your way.
Thank you, Henry.
I appreciate that.
That was nice of him.
Think he could have said it a little louder?
A little young, isn't it?
No, Margaret. To die at 68.
That's ten years below the life expectancy of a Caucasian female. Did you know that?
Ross, you're a fine doctor.
I'm sure you knew exactly what you were doing when you took her off those pills.
Like I knew what I was doing when I chose this town?
With the country doctor from hell.
Or this fine house, which is rotting from the ground up.
I'm gonna take care of that in the morning.
Well, Margaret's still gonna be dead in the morning.
I still want to know what killed her.
He was nailing something in the cellar and the wood just disintegrated.
That's what my husband thought.
- And he's an expert in these matters? - Well... no.
Didn't think so.
I'm glad you called me.
No room for amateurs in this game.
What is it?
It's hard to say.
Would anybody object if I tore this floor out?
- I would. - False alarm, then. Lead on.
How bad is it?
I didn't find a thing. Go figure.
Then why is all the wood rotting?
I'll tell you why.
So... what do we do?
Tear out bad wood.
Put in good wood.
My husband thought this would make a good wine cellar.
I collect beer cans myself.
I got a rare '74 of Miller Lite with a misprint on the label.
Only a hundred or so cans in circulation.
The husband just might want to take a gander.
No hard shoes on the court.
Look, I know what a blow losing Margaret was for you.
People keep score. You're only as good as your last game.
- Hell, I ought to know. - I appreciate your concern, Henry.
I want you to enjoy Canaima.
Clean water, fresh air.
Got no police sirens wailing all night.
Just crickets. We have crickets up the wazoo.
Actually, I haven't heard any crickets lately, now that you mention it.
Actually, I haven't either.
Okay, Broncos, the doc's here!
Get ready to drop 'em.
The doc wants to hear you cough.
You call yourself Broncos?
You look like a bunch of babies. Come on!
You're moving in slow motion here.
That's supposed to be a banana out. Looks like a banana split!
- Shitty pass. - I heard that!
What are you, a garbage mouth?
Hit the showers.
Wash that mouth out. Miller!
- You know the patterns? - Like the back of my hand.
Get in here. Run the same thing again. Hurry up.
Come on, Miller. We're waiting on you, let's go!
Come on! Move it! You wanna play?
Come on, run. Let's go.
Up. Let's go.
Miller, you all right?
- Coach! - What's wrong with Miller?
Back up, let him breathe.
What's wrong? What is it?
Come on, give us some air.
Let's get his helmet off.
Real easy. Support his head, coach.
From what I hear, it wasn't a very hard tackle.
I only wish I knew, you see
Dr Jennings examined him last.
Why so gloomy?
Bunny Beechwood says that everybody's calling you Dr Death.
That's just silly, Shelley.
And they say you want to cut people up into little pieces.
It's called an autopsy.
It's not a very pleasant thing,
but sometimes it's the only way to find out what really happened to a person.
But some doctors who should know better won't accept that.
But some doctors who should know better just won't accept
that their big-city methods don't sit well in a small town.
Both Margaret and that poor boy did seem to be quite healthy.
It's a bit odd, don't you think, Sam?
If I autopsied everyone who ever died of a heart attack
I'd be run out of Canaima so fast...
Poor Sam. You still think life is a popularity contest.
You're not jealous of our new young doctor, are you?
Now you made me lose my timing.
You're yelling, Sam.
Come on to bed.
I need a shower.
I'd love to start taking walks around the neighbourhood with you.
It's not the same thing, Evelyn.
I need to know exactly how far I've gone
and exactly how long it took me.
Floor's cold, Sam.
You're right. You're always right.
- What's wrong? - Some damn thing bit me.
It's just a spider.
Spider? Felt like a damn cougar.
I'm having a seizure.
Sam, what should I do?
Ambulance. Call Jennings.
I'll be right there.
- What's going on? - Metcalf. He's having a seizure.
Thank God you didn't examine him this morning.
- What's the coroner doing here? - I don't know.
Milt! This isn't necessary.
I'll be the judge of that, Lloyd.
Wait out here.
Guard the house or something.
Was he alive when you got here?
He'd been dead maybe five minutes.
Whatever it was, it was abrupt and acute.
What's your guess? Massive coronary? Cerebral haemorrhage?
His wife says he was bitten by a spider just before he seized.
Sam told me about you.
You're the hot shot who won't accept anyone else's diagnosis.
I'll accept it if I agree with it.
Let me show you something.
I believe that's a spider bite.
I'll buy that.
But I rather doubt that's what killed him
In twenty years, I've seen only one spider-bite fatality.
And that involved a black widow and a one-year-old child.
No. My guess is that Sam overexerted himself.
His wife said he was using the treadmill just before he keeled over.
You may be right.
I want a full autopsy.
Tissue samples, blood toxicology, the whole nine yards.
- Wait just one second. - Shut up, Lloyd.
- You'll get Evelyn's permission, of course. - Of course.
- You need a ride home? - No, I'm all right, thanks.
You better take care of yourself now. You're the town doctor.
Okay, I think we're gonna treat this inflammation with antibiotics.
Does this mean I don't get any ice cream?
I'll buy you a double scoop on the way home.
I'll take that. Thank you very much.
Step right this way.
Just have a seat. I'll be right with you.
Okay, hot shot. Are you sitting down?
According to preliminary data, Sam Metcalf died as the result of
a minute amount of an as yet unidentified toxic substance in his bloodstream.
My office isn't ruling out accidental poisoning, deliberate poisoning
or even killer spiders.
At the moment, it looks like a heart attack to me.
But I'll support whatever you'd like to do.
I gotta have those bodies exhumed.
I gotta be sure.
Whatever you think is necessary.
Are you out of your mind?
Slowly and once more, Lloyd -
I want Margaret Hollins' and Todd Miller's bodies exhumed.
You start pulling citizens out of the ground that should be enjoying eternal rest
and that roomful of patients will disappear...
I'll just get a court order. Milt Briggs is on my side.
This is a very bad business, Mr Yale-graduate-big-city doctor!
A very bad business!
- Hi, Dad. - Hi, honey.
What's going on?
I promised Shelley she could spend the night with Bunny.
We'll take good care of her.
There may be some spiders around here that are very dangerous.
Okay? I just want you girls to be aware of this.
If you should see one, don't try to capture it or kill it.
Just run, you understand?
- Run! - We'll do that, Dr Jennings.
You don't have to worry about anything.
Are you all right?
The spider didn't answer. She had fallen asleep.
It had been a very, very busy day.
Okay, your turn, Bunny.
The itsy bitsy spider
Crawled up the water spout
Down came the rain and washed the spider out
Out came the sun and dried up all the rain
And the itsy bitsy spider crawled up the spout again
It's my turn now.
Little Miss Muffet sat on a tuffet
Eating her curds and whey
And along came a spider
That sat down beside her
And frightened Miss Muffet...
If you girls don't settle down then Shelley can't stay over any more.
- We can't sleep. - We keep scaring each other.
Why don't you two go sleep in my room for a while?
Okay. Nah, we don't need this.
Son of a bitch.
Where are all the other crickets?
Where are all your buddies?
Yes, Dr Atherton.
I'm Ross Jennings.
I'm a general practitioner, and I...
I have a problem that may be spider-related.
You seem to be the foremost authority on the West Coast.
Or any coast, for that matter.
Dr Jennings, let me tell you that
every so often in a little town somewhere there is a health scare,
some unexplained outbreak, and spiders make convenient culprits.
Did you know that on every suburban acre
there are at least 50 to 60,000 spiders?
And that each spider eats about 100 insects per year?
That means at least 5 million insects are consumed per acre annually.
Think about it, doctor.
Perhaps man might find the planet uninhabitable without spiders.
Dr Atherton, I have nothing against spiders.
It's just we have had three deaths in my town
and I'm afraid there's going to be some more.
If you could lend me your expertise, forjust an afternoon...
We're really not that far from you. It's a town called Canaima.
You know it?
Let me see what I can do. Where are you exactly?
- Sorry. - Are you equally busy tomorrow?
No, I'm Chris Collins, one of his assistants.
Hi, I'm Chris. Atherton's really busy lately.
He's recently discovered a new species of spider. Down in South America.
To us, it's a big deal.
I hope you'll be able to help us. We're going to be examining some bodies.
It sounds like a blast.
We're looking for bites.
Like this. That's a spider, isn't it?
I'm not sure.
I think so.
But even at several times the potency of latrodectus.
- Black widow, right? - Right.
Even then it would take more than one bite to kill,
so I figure this guy's death and the spider bite, if it a spider bite, are coincidental.
Hey, guys, how's it going?
She was a good wife, good teacher, good neighbour.
Anything you want, just shout.
I want some fresh air.
Chris, come here.
Still think it's a coincidence?
That's a spider bite.
The tissue surrounding the bite is macerated.
A mark behind the left ear.
- Atherton. - Dr Atherton, Chris Collins.
I think we've got a big problem here in Canaima.
They've got three dead bodies.
The cause of death seems to be a spider more deadly than any I've ever seen.
They want the okay to quarantine the town.
- Are you sure? - This is way out of my league.
I think you'd better come up here right away.
I can be there tomorrow afternoon.
But Collins, try and find me a specimen.
Did you bring the keys?
Perk up, Lloyd.
If we find the spider that did this, you can arrest him.
Milt, why don't you cover the living room?
Chris, why don't you check out back?
Lloyd, take the kitchen.
And I'll just... I'll oversee the... I'll just coordinate the...
I'll just stay right here.
What is all that crap?
Leftovers. Mostly cricket parts, wings, legs.
We haven't heard any crickets in Canaima these past few weeks.
- It's dead. Shit! - What could have killed it?
The shock of seeing Lloyd?
There are other people in this house.
Dad, go away!
Use the one down here!
Never a moment's peace.
What happened? Are you all right?
Why don't we just take the dead spider and get out of here?
You don't get off that easy. It's already desiccated. It wouldn't be any use to us.
You mean macerated.
No, I mean desiccated. Dried up, drained of all its blood.
Macerated is the... chewing that they do.
They're like little vampires.
This trip of Atherton's to find the spider species, where'd he go?
Is that one of them?
I'd say it's a damn fine suspect.
Ross, you're going to have to take a step towards it.
- Chris, I'm scared to death. - We all are.
But our brains secrete a neurotransmitter that enables us to deal with them.
I don't think I have that particular neurotransmitter.
Yes, you do.
You need an asbestos glove.
Doomsday weapon in Delbert's war on a creepy crawler.
I coat it with Demon EC, insecticide with environmental conscience.
It's biodegradable. Organic.
You ought to see the little beasties twitch when they get a whiff of this stuff.
There's a rumour going around that some kind of spider killed Sam Metcalf.
Maybe Margaret, maybe even my Bronco.
In a case in Florida one of my colleagues bumped into a nest of black widows.
Sustained over a dozen bites and lived.
Of course, he probably lost control of all of his bodily functions.
There's no spider here.
But I will hunt down the alleged arachnid
and spritz him to kingdom come.
Yeah, that's right.
Dr Atherton, Ross Jennings.
Did you find me another specimen?
Yes, I did. I also paid a call to the town mortician.
Several months ago, there was a corpse.
The body was desiccated, it was totally drained of blood.
Irv agreed that if the spider was big enough
and it spent a long enough time working on that body...
I think I know why you've heard of Canaima.
This was Jerry Manley's home town.
- Manley the photographer? - Yeah.
I think one of your Venezuelan spiders hitched a ride here in Manley's coffin.
The fangs, the injectors, are disproportionately large.
Three poison sacs.
Now, let's test the venom.
The nature of the toxin and the amount injected determine the effect of the bite.
And, of course, the place where the subject is bitten.
It can lead to paralysis or death.
I'm no expert, but I'd guess this toxin is fatal at a fraction of that dose.
No sex organs.
That would make them drones.
That's typically seen in highly organised insect societies-bees, ants -
but we've never seen it in spiders.
- I have. - Venezuela, right?
Right. This is the descendant.
Somehow that South American male has mated with a domestic house spider
and created a very deadly strain.
But if it has no sex organs, it can't reproduce, right?
True, and the accelerated growth rate, combined with the specialisation,
suggests a short life cycle.
We've already seen a dead one.
- That could be the good news. - Now let's discuss the bad.
In their own ecosystem,
the species I discovered in South America live at the top of the food chain.
The spread out from a central nest in a web-like pattern and dominate the area.
But in their original habitat, geography contains them. That isn't true here.
So the original male's the grandaddy of them all.
And he's acting like a general sending his troops to battle.
Professor? This is our town exterminator.
McClintock, infestation management. Always nice to meet a colleague.
He believes he came across one of the offending spiders a couple of hours ago.
Might you have brought it with you?
Actually, he's probably still on the bottom of my shoe.
You really can't tell what it is any more.
In this first generation, the original male also produced a queen.
Together they will construct a primary nest, which the queen will guard.
But eventually she will create reproductive offspring of her own.
When that happens, this town is dead.
And the next town, and the next town. And the next one and so on.
Irv owns the mortuary where it must have originated.
- If we go in and destroy the original male... - And the primary nest.
- I'll call the Department of Agriculture. - There's phones in the office.
- I'll see you later at the mortuary. - Sheriff, you'll give me a ride.
I am not a chauffeur.
- Shut up. - Damn, it's busy!
Irv and Blaire always take the phone off the hook during Wheel Of Fortune.
Let's get the hell over there.
Blaire, real butter or fake butter?
- Irv, hurry. - Buttery, hot and delicious!
He needs to buy a vowel.
Buy a vowel.
What's this nest? What's it gonna look like?
You'd know it if you found it. The area would be dark, warm, moist.
It'd be kind of a musty smell and you'd probably see an egg sac.
Like your basic egg sac.
White, cocooned, pulsating, about the size of a softball.
Of course, there'd be no other spiders around.
What do you mean?
Spiders are cannibals, so she wouldn't want any others near her offspring.
Yes, tell them exactly what I've told you. Even if it is interrupting a dinner party.
Where is this?
It's the old Daniels place. Jennings bought it.
Take me there.
Canaima welcomes you.
Irv, we have an emergency!
I'll get us into the mortuary.
We've found it.
Please go back to the mortuary and round up my assistant and that exterminator.
All right, I'll do that.
Meanwhile, just stay here, sir, because I'm not going to be responsible for...
The killings have been so arbitrary. Maybe there's more than one nest.
No, there's just that one.
What was it Atherton said?
They radiate out from a central nest. You got a map of this town?
- Thinking about buying here? - Just get a map, please.
The Kendalls' house.
Mark that down on there.
And the old guy, the doctor.
- The football kid? - Died behind the high school.
Right here. This is fun. I found one at Beechwood's.
- The old lady, what was her name? - Margaret.
- Is that all of them? - Yeah, that's it.
This here in the centre, that's the mortuary, right?
- No, that's a house. - Who the hell lives there?
The whole time the nest was in my own goddamn barn!
I doubt that, doc.
Your basic spider'd find your old barn a tad breezy this time of year.
In that respect, spiders are a bit like you and me.
I frankly doubt the nest is in the barn.
I frankly know it is.
I was in the barn. I saw a web.
There's a web in the barn.
A web would indicate an arachnoid presence.
They got a saying, I believe it's in the Benelux countries...
Just drive, Delbert. Just drive and get us there, please.
My, you've been busy!
Come and get it.
I gotta get my family out. Destroy whatever's in the barn.
Check. Better uncork my private stock.
- Chris, there may be spiders in the house. - They're probably... All right, let's go.
Give me a minute to look around out here and then we go in, nice and easy, all right?
Trick or treat.
Let's see what we got up here.
Oh, my God. They got the professor.
- We're in here, Ross. - Hi, Dad.
I expected you home for dinner. I got worried, I called the office.
Sorry, I didn't get a chance to call.
Everybody just get up very slowly.
And walk towards the door.
Okay, quick and quiet.
We're gonna need another way out of here.
Upstairs, up into the bathroom. We can climb out onto the roof.
Watch yourself, Ross.
Come on, Shelley.
This doesn't make sense. They're swarming.
I've never seen them this aggressive.
Hi, you guys, I'm Chris.
Put that under the door, quick!
Get it off me!
- Come on, Shelley. - One at a time.
Down the trellis, honey.
Get out of there.
Ross, get out of there.
- Where's Ross? - Right behind me.
Shelley, Tommy, come here quick!
- Kids, come on. - Get 'em away from the house.
Rock 'n' roll.
All right, it's party time.
What is it? Musty smell, moist, dark, no spiders.
There's no spiders.
It's dark, musty. The nest!
Nest. The queen.
Shit, I'm in the goddamn nest!
I found the nest!
And I saw the queen!
That's your basic egg sac.
Be right back.
Where is it? That was the goddamn general!
Not the Château.
Goddamn it, where are you?
The itsy bitsy spider climbed up the water spout
Down came the rain and washed the spider out
Come on, come on.
Don't mention it.
It's okay. Everything's okay.
- Oh, God, the spider... - It's okay.
Most of them are dead. The ones Delbert didn't get are dying.
- Where are the kids? - The kids are fine. Everybody's okay.
# I left my heart
# In San Francisco
# High on a hill
You know what I'll miss most about the country?
- What? - I don't know. That's why I'm asking you.
At least we got out with our lives.
And the Margaux.
To office politics, Christmas bonuses,
To things that we know, to events that we can control.
- Okay, that was a minor tremor. - I barely felt it.
Probably wouldn't even show up on that scale.
Just a cable car going by.
We should check the kids.
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