Tommy Brooks is visiting his grandparents for the summer. They live in the mountains, where Tommy can't get any reception on his cellphone. Grandpa is a retired magician fond of showing Tommy his tricks, and grandma is an excellent cook, so things aren't so bad. Then strange things start happening after Tommy goes into the attic, which Grandpa expressly forbid Tommy from doing.
In the attic, there is an old television which can receive only one station, which shows only one TV program - The Smiling Johnny Cartoon Show. Tommy suddenly notices the clown host in the TV is looking back at him.