Adventures of Superman (1952–1958): Season 4, Episode 5 - Topsy Turvy - full transcript

This episode marks the first appearance of Phillips Tead) in the role of eccentric scientist Professor Pepperwinkle, whose offbeat inventions invariably cause trouble for Clark Kent (George Reeves) and his fellow "Daily Planet" newshounds. This time, Pepperwinkle has created a device that fools the nervous system and makes people think that they are upside down. Crooked sideshow man Carni (Ben Welden) decides to steal the invention so that he can rob a few banks. Thus it is that Clark Kent disappears, and Superman appears in his place, the better to revert back to "downside-up" (or something like that).

Adventures of Superman.

Faster than a speeding bullet.

More powerful than a locomotive.

Able to leap tall buildings
at a single bound.

MAN: Look! Up in the
sky! MAN 2: It's a bird!

WOMAN: It's a plane!
MAN 3: It's Superman!

NARRATOR: Yes, it's Superman,

strange visitor
from another planet

who came to Earth
with powers and abilities

far beyond those of mortal men.

Superman, who can change
the course of mighty rivers,

bend steel in his bare hands,

and who, disguised
as Clark Kent,

mild-mannered reporter for a
great metropolitan newspaper,

fights a never-ending battle

for truth, justice and
the American way.


Look in the file case, Jim.

All he usually keeps
in there is his lunch.


Honestly, you'd think
he'd file his coffee

before he went
chasing off someplace.



No, this is Lois.

I don't know where Clark is.

Okay, just a minute.

Go ahead.

Thank you. Goodbye.

Miss Lane, do
you feel all right?

Oh, fine.

Except this is the
craziest thing yet.

Then let's forget about it.

We'd get into enough trouble
under normal circumstances.

Oh, this couldn't get
us into any trouble.

That's what I've
said a lot of times,

and then 10 minutes later,
Superman has to snatch me

from in front of a truck.

But this might lead to a story.

You know that flagpole sitter
up on top of the Acme building?

Sure. He's been there 103 days.

Well, it's evidently
affecting his mind.

He keeps screaming that
he's hanging upside-down.

JIMMY: This I have to see.

I hope we get
there before he falls.

He can't really be upside-down.

Can he?


Help! Help!

I'm falling!

Get me a parachute! I'm falling.

Ah! Oh!

Here, here, take it easy.

Get ahold of yourself,
man, you're all right.


Not to you. Everything
is all right to you.

You're Superman. You
could hang in any direction,

you won't mind.

Would you mind telling me
what you're talking about?

Look-a! Down there.
Everything's upside-down.

I'm upside-down. I'm falling!

Oh, wait, wait. Look, I'll
prove to you you're all right.

Let go.

Let go?

That's right, let go.

I'm here to catch you if
anything should go wrong.

Ah, well. We all
have to go sometime.

One, two,

two and a half, three!

There we go.

Oh! Everything is all right.

Everything is all...
Everything's right side up.


If I were you, I'd climb down
and abandon this whole project.

Oh, no, no. I couldn't do that.
I'm gonna break the record.

I'm gonna stay here.

Well, I can't force you.

Good luck.


Hey, Clark, you missed it.

I did? What?

The flagpole sitter on
top of the Acme building

thought he was
upside-down, and Superman...

I know, I know, Jim.
As a matter of fact,

here's the completed
story for you, right there.

But you weren't
even in the office

when I got the call.

That's right, Lois, I wasn't.

I wasn't even in the building.

That's why I happened
to be in the vicinity

when Superman
landed atop that flagpole.

I don't know how he does it.

One of these days, Mr. Kent.


Come in.

Well, Professor Pepperwinkle.

How nice to see you, sir.

Well, I'm certainly
glad you remember me.

Why, you're everybody's
favorite professor.

Uh, would you
help me... Put this...

Oh, sure, sure. On the desk...

Jeepers, you're not in the
traveling salesman business,

are you?

No, Jimmy, it looks to me

like our professor has
been inventing again.

I'm afraid so, Mr. Kent.

And I need the
advice of a friend.

Oh, you do? Well, let's see,

last time it was a
swimming pool without water

for people who couldn't swim.

Now, what is it this time?

I call it the anti-magneto
gravitational register.

I've experimented on
myself with great success.

But, um, what does it do?

Actually, it produces waves
which have a strange effect

on the human inner ear.

Oh, you mean the
balancing mechanism,

like the semicircular canals?


It took me three
years to invent this,

and I don't have the slightest
idea what it's good for.

Oh, maybe if you, uh,
gave us a demonstration,

we might come up
with a suggestion.

Oh, yes, that would be nice.

Uh, I'll show you how it works.

Now, you see that marble?

Jeepers, a science
fiction pinball machine.

Oh, not, uh, not quite,
uh, Jimmy. That marble

has secret chemical properties.

Now I'll show you how it works.



Now, watch what happens
when I send the marble on its way.

Help! I'm upside-down!

Everything's upside-down!

I'm falling, but I'm not
landing anywhere...

Of course, it's merely
a psychological effect

induced through
the nervous system.

Professor, I think you'd
better turn us around again.

Well, that's one
of the problems.

I haven't quite perfected
the reverse mechanism.

JIMMY & LOIS: What?!

Oh, it... It works
eventually, all right.

Now, let's see...

Kent, I wa...

Ah! Ah!

Hey, Rube.

Hey, Rube!

Don't get so excited.
You'll get used to it.

There, that should do it.


You can let go now, old boy.

Wh-what happened?

Well, my friend,
Professor Pepperwinkle,

was just demonstrating
his latest invention.

Professor Pepperwinkle.

But I was standi" on my head.

I mean, my feet.

Only my head was where
my feet shoulda been.

CLARK: Yes, it did
seem like that, didn't it?

Uh, now, what did you
want to see me about?

Nothin'. Nothin' at all.

Just me l... Just lemme
get outta this crazy place.

Well, now, did
you get any ideas?

What do you think
I should do with it?

There's a fire axe down
the hall. I'll go and get it.

Now, wait a minute, Jimmy.

You can't just smash up

three years' work like that.

Professor, what ever possessed
you to spend all that time

inventing a machine to
turn people upside-down?

Oh, I wanted to be the first.

Professor, were
you experimenting

anywhere in the vicinity
of the Acme building today?

Why, yes, I was.

I directed the
machine straight up, uh,

where no one would be affected.

Clark, the flagpole sitter.

I don't understand.

Oh, never mind, professor.

I suggest you take your gadget
home, and don't use it again,

until you let us
think about it again.

Well, all right, Mr. Kent.


Well, I-I hope I haven't
troubled you nice people.

Professor, we enjoyed every
nerve-racking moment of it.


Hey, Carny, what's the matter?

You look like you been
through a spook house,

and the spooks was real.

Yeah, I feel worse than I look.

We was upside-down, all of us.

Hangin' there by our toes.

What are you talkin' about?
Are you crazy or something?

Yeah, I'm crazy. I've
been to a nut house.

The Daily Planet.

What? The newspaper?

Yeah. You know them articles

they been writing
about crooked carnivals?

And I went there to
warn 'em to lay off.

What do they expect
us to do, run legitimate?

We gotta leave that to the
honest carnival operators.

Anyway, the minute
I walked in the door,

there I was, walki"
on the ceiling.

Maybe you been out in the
sun too long, huh, Carny?

All right, wise guy, it
should happen to you, once.

But, boss, it ain't possible.

It ain't, huh? This guy's
got a machine, see.

It works with a marble!

Marbles, huh? Are you
sure you got all of yours?

I tell you, it's the truth.

Hey, just think, if there
really was a gimmick like that,

what we could do with it.

Like what? Like what?!

Like, for instance, we been
trying to plan a bank job

for a long time, right?


So we walk into a bank,
police, people, everything.

And bingo, we flip
the joint upside-down.

In the panic, we steal
everything and beat it.

Yoyo, ya got it.

I'm surprised my own
brain didn't think of that.

Yeah, I think your brain is
suffering from acute attusions,

because there ain't
no such machine.

There ain't, huh?

What was it now...

Prof... Professor Pepperwinkle.

That's it!

You wait here. I gotta
make a phone call.


Uh, Professor Pepperwinkle,
this is Cornelius J. Oliver.

Uh, never mind that.

I know about that
machine of yours.

Oh, sure, but I
know a way to use it.

Oh, n-not on the telephone.

I tell you what.

You bring all your junk to
the carnival at 6th and Elm.

Ask for me, and I'll
lay it all out for ya then.

Swell, uh, but, professor,
kinda keep it quiet

till we make a deal, okay?


Oh, Clark, I just talked to
the professor on the phone.

He's got some wonderful news.

Hm. Not another
invention, I hope.

Same invention, but somebody
wants to buy it from him.

What in the world for?

Well, he doesn't know yet,
but he will by tomorrow morning.

I said Jimmy and I would stop
by to see what it's all about.

Why can't the professor
invent something practical,

like the better
mousetrap, or something?

[LAUGHS] Not him.

He'd try to invent
the better mouse first.


What could it
possibly be used for?


What are all these
little gizmos for, pop?

Well, you said to
bring everything.

Those are remote control units.

[MUMBLING] Remote control...

You mean you can put these
little ones somewhere far away

and make them work
from this big one?

Yes. A stroke of genius,
if I do say so myself.

Remote control, yet.

I think you're both nuts.

Uh, my partner here's one of
them skepticable characters.

You got to prove
to him it works.

Listen, if this thing can
turn me upside-down,

I'll eat my hat.

Yep. Uh, naturally.

Uh, are you ready?

Go ahead.




You were right,
Yoyo, it don't work.

What do ya mean, it
don't work? I'm inverted.

Relax, relax, take it easy.

[CHUCKLES] Look, no hands.

Hey, how about this?

Okay, pop, let us down, now.


There you are.

You see? Don't
bother you at all,

once you get used to it.

Yeah, but if you're
not used to it...

That's the whole idea.

Pardon me, but, uh, what
exactly is the whole idea?

Well, the idea, pop, is
to make people happy.

That's why me and
Yoyo run this carnival.

Not to make money, just
to make people happy.

Sure, money is the last
thing we ever think about,

just before we go to sleep.


Uh, always makin'
with the jokes.

You see, pop, we got
six or seven carnivals

running right around this town.

Of course, I see.

You think people
would actually enjoy

being turned upside-down.
Like those loop-the-loops.

You got it, pop.

We could put one of
these gizmos in each carny,

and you could run the
whole setup from right in here.

Nothing I like better than
making people happy.

Well, pop, you made Carny
and me very happy already.

Yeah. Now you
better run along, pop,

but be sure and be back
at 9 tomorrow morning.

We oughta have everything
set up then for a test run.

It's been a great pleasure
meeting both of you,

and I'm sure our
association will be rewarding.

No doubt about it,
pop, no doubt about it.


Well, uh, see you
in the morning, huh?

Yeah, bright and
early, bright and early.

Uh, good night. Good night, pop.

I've seen a lot of squares,

but this one takes the cake.

Hey, Carny, what
was all that chatter

about them remote control boxes?

My brain is makin'
up for lost time.

Now, the whole thing
depends on timing.

Here we are.

There's the bank, see.

Inside, there's no trouble.

But makin' the getaway,
that's another problem.

Yeah, well, gettin' away
is always a problem.

This time it's a cinch.

We figure the escape
route, time it to the second,

then plant these little
boxes along the way.

Ah, I get it.

And anybody followin' you
gets flipped upside-down, right?

That's usin' the old head, huh?

Eh, boss, you're a
dyed-in-the-wool genius.

Mmm. I gotta admit
it, I'm a genius.


Five blocks from the bank.

This oughta be a good
spot to plant the first one.

You know, Carny, this is
gonna be like stealin' candy

from the First National Bank.

Yeah. Eh, right there.

Yeah, okay.


Eh, we got six more to plant.

Then we gotta time the route.

Well, figuring you enter
the bank at exactly 10:30.

Yeah, 10:30.

Just make sure the box goes off

exactly two
minutes later. 10:32.

It'll go off, don't worry.

Okay, let's go.

Oh, I can hardly wait
to start the machine!


Oh, I do hope
the people enjoy it.

Don't worry, pop, they
won't know what him 'em.

But what I don't understand
is why the first one has to go

at exactly 10:32.

Look, pop, I been in the
carny business all my life.

I know what I'm doin', okay?

Oh, of course, Mr. Yoyo,
anything you say.

Oh, I just hope it's a success.

Don't worry, it's
going to be a success.

Don't worry about it.


Yes, chief, what is it?

Where's Lois and that
boy wonder of journalism?

I want them immediately.

Oh, they stopped by to
see the professor, chief.

I'll call them up and
try to get them to hustle.

Do that, and ask them if
they'd mind squeezing in

a little work between
visiting hours.


I don't get it, chief. I
called the professor

No one's there. No one
answered the phone.

Well, call him right back
and ask why he's not at home.


Get on your mark, pop.

Three minutes to go.


Whenever you give
the signal, Mr. Yoyo.

JIMMY: Professor?
Professor Periwinkle?

Whatever you're selling,
we don't want any.

Oh, we're not
selling anything, sir.

We're... We're looking
for the professor.

Just in time! Okay,

you might as well
sit down and watch.

You, get back to the gizmo.

Yes, yes, of course, of course.

LOIS: We got your note

you were coming here.

Okay, pop, 90 seconds
to go, get ready.

What's all this about, sir?

Oh! A delightful idea.

Mr. Yoyo and his
friends have planted

my remote control boxes at
six different carnivals in town.

They have... They have
upside-down rooms,

and that sort of thing.

Okay, pop, now,
cut the gab, will you?

You got 60 seconds.

Wait a minute, professor.

Mr. Kent is writing
some carnival articles.

And this is the
only one in town.

But Mr. Yoyo said
that they owned...

Don't interfere, lady, will ya?

We'll interfere
if we feel like it.

Of course, we
don't feel like it.

You don't waste
much time, do you?

Got no time to waste.

All right you two, sit down
where I can keep an eye on you.

This is outrageous.

I-I refuse to cooperate until
you tell me the meaning of this.

You'll cooperate, professor,

unless you want your
little friends here to get hurt.

Jeepers, why do we have
to live in the age of invention?

I'm afraid there's
an evil purpose

for even the best of inventions.

Okay, pop, 10:32. Hit it!


Okay, pop, get set
to hit number two.

At least you could tell
us what's happening.

Lady, if nothing went wrong,
we just stole a million bucks.


Okay, pop, 10:40.
Hit number two.

That was the last one.

You can shut the
machine off now, pop.

Carny oughta be here
in a couple of minutes.

Tell him we're sorry,
but we couldn't wait.

Let's face it. You're the
only ones who can identify us.

You can't afford
to let us go, right?

That's it, lady.

It's my fault.

I got you into this.

We're not blaming
you, professor.

Jeepers, if someone
only knew we were here.

I'm afraid even
Superman couldn't find us.

Not a chance,
lady, not a chance.

Okay, go back and sit down, now.

Go on.

If it hadn't actually
happened to me,

I'd say you were all crazy.

All right, thank you very much.

I've got your
statements. Go on home.


Kent, my head's still spinning.

Have you ever driven
a car down the street

and suddenly found
yourself upside-down?

No, Bill, I can't say as I have,

but I had much the same
experience in my own office.

Obviously the
professor's machine

is at the bottom of all this.

Now, it doesn't seem possible

that dopey little man
could be crooked.

I don't believe he is, either.

I think somebody's
just using him.

And that somebody's
making an absolute fool

of the entire police department.

I know, but the important thing

is that these people
are dangerous.

Now, we know they
have the professor.

The odds are 2-1 they've
got Jimmy and Lois too.

Yeah, and there's
nothing we can do about it.

Oh, there must be
some connection.

Wait a minute, you remember
I told you about that fellow

that burst in the office?

So all we have to
do is locate a man

who could be anybody, anyplace.

Isn't there something you
can remember about him?

Now, things were a little
confused at that point.

We were upside-down, remember?

Well, wait a minute,
there was one thing.

The first thing he
yelled was, "Hey, Rube."

Hey, Kent, that
could be the answer.

Whenever there's trouble
around a carnival or circus,

that's the signal for help.

That's right, and there's a
carnival playing the town.

Well, come on. It's worth a try.

You go ahead, Bill. I-I'd like
to hold the paper, if I may.

All right, I'll see you later.



South America, here we come.

Yeah, after we get rid of them.


What'd you say?

Oh, let 'em talk, they
ain't got much time left.



Kid musta swallowed his tongue.



All right, get in line.

JIMMY: Superman!


Are you all right?

Fine. Yeah.

Ah, good.

Well, it's nice to have
things back to normal.

If there ever was
a nick of time,

Superman, that was it.

That gives me an idea...

a machine to make time
stand absolutely still for...

Now, just a moment, professor,

no more machines, please.

You know, this calls
for a celebration.

I'd want to invite all
of you and Mr. Kent

to my house for dinner.

Mom's cooking something
special for dessert.

Sounds good, Jim, what is it?

Pineapple upside-down cake.


NARRATOR: Don't miss
the next thrill-packed episode

in the amazing
Adventures of Superman!

Superman is based
on the original character

appearing in Superman magazine.