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"Gilligan's Personal Magnetism"
Season 3, Episode 21
Struck by lightning, Gilligan becomes electrified with a bowling ball stuck to his hand.
Basic Info
Air Date: February 6, 1967
Written By: Bruce Howard
Directed By: Hal Cooper
Guest Cast: None
Episode guide
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Gilligan's Personal Magnetism is the 89th episode of Gilligan's Island and the 21st episode of the Third Season. It first aired on February 6, 1967.


While Gilligan and the Skipper are bowling, a storm comes up and Gilligan is struck by lightning. His bowling ball becomes mysteriously and magnetically attached to his hand; the Professor rationalizes the lightning has become attracted to the iron in Gilligan's blood. The odd predicament makes Gilligan electrically-charged. The Skipper gets shocked lifting Gilligan into his hammock that night plus the weight of the ball keeps hitting and smacking everything in sight, even the Skipper, who keeps getting more frustrated. The next day, the Professor believes he can use the generator from the S.S. Minnow to create a counter-charge and disintegrate the ball. With Mary Ann helping him, Gilligan watches as the ball resists the charge, but with another storm approach, Gilligan is struck by lightning again. The ball is successfully knocked free of his hand, but the energy causes a cloaking effect around Gilligan that renders him invisible to the Castaways. His strange state makes it difficult for Ginger to examine for the Professor who thinks strips of cloth dipped in lead ore will absorb the charge off him. However, when Gilligan is left wandering around alone in his mummy status, he ends up terrifying the girls and Mrs. Howell. When Ginger runs from Gilligan, she snags his wrappings on her comb and pulls it off as she flees. That night as the Castaways sit around at dinner and realize what had happened, they find a note from Gilligan reporting he has left for the other side of the island to be left alone. When Mary Ann tries processing this news, Gilligan sneaks back while still invisible to get some food and is noticed by his plate sliding around. Realizing Gilligan has been eavesdropping, the Skipper gets angry and moves about trying to swat him with his cap, but Gilligan eludes and dodges him, even taunting him just as the invisibility finally wears off. Realizing he's back to normal, Gilligan tries to apologize to the Skipper, who is now so angry that he chases Gilligan into the jungle. The following morning, Gilligan is happy to be visible once more, and the Skipper is in a good mood too, throwing his voice into the hut from outside to trick Gilligan into thinking he's now invisible but just good-naturedly teasing him the next.


  • "Inside every misfortune is a bigger misfortune waiting to get out."


  • Mary Ann and Ginger kissing Gilligan and getting shocked by him
  • Gilligan drinking the glass of milk while Mary Ann holds it
  • Gilligan taunting Skipper while being invisible
  • The Skipper tricking Gilligan to thinking he's invisible


Main Cast

Guest Cast

  • None


  • Since the castaways already had a bowling alley in Plant You Now, Dig You Later, creating another one seems like a waste of their time.
  • The storm footage at the top of the episode is the same archived storm footage used in the opening theme song.
  • This is the second time Gilligan has been struck by lightning; he was also struck by lightning in Meet the Meteor.
  • When the ball on Gilligan's hand smashes the wood table. two boards remain unbroken.
  • When the Professor tells the girls to act nonchalant, they begin whistling the Gilligan's Island theme.
  • The girls are able to touch Gilligan without getting shocked. They only get shocked where their lips touch him.
  • If one looks closely in the hut scene with Mary Ann, a small tube going up her sleeve pumping the drink out of Gilligan's glass can be seen. In the scene with Ginger, the wire holding up the peach is also visible.
  • Since most of the Castaways' dishes and utensils on the island are made from indigenous materials, the presence of a glass cup goes unexplained -
  • The men cover Gilligan in bandages dipped in lead ore to counteract the magnetism making Gilligan invisible. Dressed up like the Mummy, Gilligan goes around scaring the girls much like he did as the "Mud Monster" in A Nose by Any Other Name.
  • One of the most far-fetched episodes of the series since getting struck by lightening would not make a person magnetized or invisible, and if it did, it probably would not have affected Gilligan's clothes.
  • The syndicated version of the episode omits that last scene when the Skipper pretends to be invisible to prank Gilligan.


  • Skipper - "Well, you got hit by lightning."
    Gilligan - "I did?"
    Skipper - "You sure did... you got knocked thirty feet into the bowling pins."
    Gilligan - "Did I knock them all down?"
    Professor - "He sounds normal."

  • Gilligan - "Skipper, did I do that?"
    Skipper - "No, Gilligan, I just felt like wearing the door tonight!"

  • Skipper - "Gilligan, if you think being invisible was the worse thing that ever happened to you, wait till I get my hands on you!"