Two teenage boys try to help a tiny spherical alien get back to its mothership, while the army and a devious petty crook pursue the creature for its wonderful powers.
A plumber, John Horner, is arrested just before Christmas and charged with stealing a famous jewel, the Blue Carbuncle, from Lady Morcar. He denies the theft - but he has a criminal record, and all the evidence is against him. After Holmes's doorman finds the Carbuncle in a Christmas goose, Holmes uses an old hat to track the goose to a poultry dealer, then traps the servant who stole the jewel and framed the plumber. The Blue Carbuncle has a dark history, and the stone features in the programme's opening credits with turbulent scenes from its past.