Alfred Hitchcock Presents (1955–1962): Season 7, Episode 16 - The Case of M.J.H. - full transcript

Jimmy French is a ne'er-do-well who meets the shy but attractive Maude Sheridan in a diner. Maude tells him she is a secretary to a well known psychotherapist and he manages to track her down and ask her out on a date. They begin seeing each other regularly and she is obviously attracted to him but he finally tells her the truth: he can't keep a regular job and is heavily in debt. His solution is for Maude to give him some of her employers files so he can blackmail them. She reluctantly agrees and he picks the case of M.J. Harrison, a successful real estate entrepreneur. He tells Harrison to give him $10000 or else he will make public his affair with an 18 year-old girl he has been seeing. The next day, Maude's employer has some shocking news for her about Jimmy and Mr. Harrision.

Good evening ladies and gentlemen,

welcome to tonight's discussion program,

since we talked for hours without
reaching any conclusions whatsoever,

we call the program: Dead End,

I have heard of anti-intellectualism,

but this is a new high,

perhaps I should remove my

I see it can become...

rather leads,

this demonstrates that contrary
to what I said previously,

our participants can reach conclusions,

and all at the same time,

it is very upsetting

because we have half an hour left,

too bad they couldn't wait,

but I see our sponsor is already
rushing to fill the void,

and on his heels of story.


Did you read this book? it's pretty funny.

Uh no no no, it's all right, okay.

-Hey let me... -No no I I, don't want,
any coffee, I have coffee at home.

That's all right.
I’ve already got it.

Oh I forgot mine,

what's that you're reading?

Principles of Abnormal Psychology,

-must be some kind of brain, huh?

not really,

I’m a secretary,

I work for a doctor a

Almost ready to be pretty smart,

my name's Jimmy French,

a fair's fair I
told you my name.

-I’m Maude Sheridan. -That's a pretty name,

I never liked it much.

He must like your job though, huh? I mean
working for him,

-what did you call him?
-A psychoanalyst,

-Yeah. -He's one of the finest doctors in
the country.

-No kid, what's his name?
-Dr Ernest Cooper,

he's written several books himself
perhaps you might...

no I guess you wouldn't have.

Well I better get going,

I got to meet a
guy downtown about a job.

Hello Maude sorry I’m back to late,

-mr Harrison show up yet?
-Oh no, he just this minute called dr Cooper,

he said he won't be able to make
his regular appointment today.

-Did he say what was bothering him?
-No he didn't but he said he,

thought he'd be able to make his
regular appointment on Thursday 2pm.

Thanks Maude,

if he calls again put him
right through,

-I’ll tell him I can fit him in tomorrow
if he wants. -Yes doctor.

Dr cooper's office,

-who did you say was calling? -Jimmy French,

you remember, the automat last night?

Well of course I remember,

how did you know where to reach me?

Well I remembered what you said about working
for uh dr Cooper so,

I just looked you up in
the book,

uh, listen Maude,

I hope you don't think
I’m fresh or anything but,

I was wondering if I could see you

tonight maybe?

Well well I don't know it's awfully
short notice,

um I was going to go home and wash my
hair tonight,

but I I guess it'd be all right.

It's a little late isn't it?

It's only 11 o'clock.

Would you like a cup of coffee?

I’d like a beer better.

I think I have
some in the refrigerator.

You like living alone Maude?

I don't suppose anybody ever really
likes living alone.

Skip the glass.

Jimmy why do you have trouble finding

don't uh you have a profession?

Well I’ve done a couple of things with
no profession,

you see I quit high school my second

that was my big mistake,

when I was a kid,

I was in hot water all the time,

I was stealing cars,


I was even arrested a couple of times.


you were young then you you
didn't know any better.


You mustn't keep blaming yourself
for things that happen in the past,

you get a
lot of guilt feelings that way.

Doctor, how much do you charge now?

Be serious.

I am,

you see I’ve had four different jobs the
past year,

none of them worth more than 70 bucks a

I’m not the kind of a guy who can take a
girl out to fancy places.

I don't like fancy places myself.

Maude you're great, you know that?

I better be going, huh?

Good night Jimmy,

thank you for the

Good night Maude.

Here we are,

specialty of the house,

roast beef,

pour the wine while you die?

well you like roast beef don't you?

Yeah sure I do.

It's too well done isn't it?

No it's fine.

Jimmy what's wrong?

I can see something's the matter.

Nothing's the matter, only me,

that's what's wrong.


why you don't say

Well I told you a lie,

I told you I was a
wild kid,

I was just an ordinary kid,

the guy described the car stealer,

guy gets himself arrested,

that's me now,

right now.

-You don't mean that.
-I’m telling you the truth,

I’m no good, I’m a crook,

cheap cocodrile.

Oh Jimmy,

you couldn't be.

It's even worse,

I’m not just broke,

I’m in debt, I’m living on borrowed dough,

if I don't pay it back I might even go
to jail,


That's what they do to guys like me.

Jimmy I have some money,

I threw 400 in the bank.

it's 2000 what.


I’d be some bargain husband,

no money, no job,

nothing but debts,

-better forget about me. -Oh Jimmy,

these things can be worked out.

Maybe they can be worked out,

I wasn't going to say this but,

there's a
way if you'll do something to help me,

and it's the only time I’ll ever
ask you to do such a thing,

because I’m gonna change right
after it's over I’ll change.

Right after what's over?

Just one more

only one, so help me,

but it's gotta be a good one,

I want you to bring me the files from
the doctor's office,

as many as you can carry,

only the current case is the ones he's had

no, no, let me finish,

see I just want you to
borrow them overnight,

and I’ll go through them real quick,

so fast you can have them back in the
office by morning,

I’ll find what I’m looking for right

Why Jimmy,
what do you want with dr Cooper's files?

what good are they gonna do you?

It's just an idea I got last week,

now this analyst stop is
pretty personal, isn't it?

I mean they have to tell the doctor
everything, don't they?

Well of course they do,

can't be any
secrets from an analyst,

-would defeat the whole purpose.
-That's right no secrets,

so if I could see the doctor's notes,

if I could,

go through them real fast,

there's bound to be plenty of stuff that
people would like to hide,

stuff they'd pay money to keep quiet.

Jimmy you're talking about blackmail.

So what?

your boss has a lot of rich patience
right it wouldn't hurt them,

all I want is enough money to pay off
the loan,

and a few more grander get us started,

why don't you even listen? won't you even
give me a chance?

No I couldn't do such a thing, I wouldn't.

Not even for me?

for us?

all right,

if that's how much it means to you.

You shouldn't ask me to do such a thing,

it isn't fair,
it isn't fair, Jimmy.


It's mr French?

He's out.

Did he say when he'd be back?

I just rent rooms lady I’m
not his personal secretary.

Would it be all right if I waited?

Either wait in the hall it's okay.

I’ve been calling you for two weeks,

you haven't called me once.

I didn't want
to bother you,

just won't work we're too different.


I brought the files,

dr Cooper's files.

Please try to keep them in some kind of

they're just notes anyway a lot of it
you won't understand.

Telling me, it's like reading a foreign
language, I can't get a tale of some of them,

what are these type ones?

Those are transcriptions from patients

sometimes dr Cooper likes to take them
downward forward,

I work for dr cooper for seven years,

and it's only because he
trusts me completely,

that I was even able to get to these files.

Don't worry about it,

they'll have him
back in the morning.

Just the same,

what we're doing is wrong.

I haven't had any dinner yet, have you?

No, I,

came directly from the office.

I’ve got some hamburger meat in the freezer,

we can have a real home-cooked
meal together,

just you and me.

I’ll fix it.

Just like we're married, huh?

My name is French, I’ve got a two o'clock
appointment with mr Harrison.

Oh yes mr French one moment please,

mr French is here mr Harrison,

-yes sir, go right in please.
-Thank you.

Come in,

that uh, transaction you mentioned this

was it a home or business property?

How's that?

What sort of real estate are we talking


did I say real estate? no,

you didn't get my mini mr Harrison
this is something personal.

And uh what does that mean?

Well you see, I would have come to your
house but,

I didn't think that would be smart I
mean not with your wife around,

-My wife?

it's not the place to talk about Diana,

is it?


well now,

who are you?

I’m just a guy who knows things,

no don't get me wrong mr
Harrison you want to fool around?

that's your business,

and I’m not saying,

but of course that's only my opinion,

other people,

they think different,

I mean this Diana is only 18,

and your wife mr Harrison,


-Get out of here.

then you take your wife for instance,

she don't know about Diana, does she?

you'd be pretty unhappy if she did,

I don't blame you for that.

how do you know about this?

I got

yeah your wife would be pretty upset if
she knew about Diana,

I’d hate to see that happen,

wouldn't you?

What do you want from me?

Like I said over the phone,

a transaction,

one simple deal and you can stop

-You want money.
-That's right,

just one payment and that's it,

no installments, no deposits,

just one lump sum we call it quits,

I want ten thousand dollars.

-How do I know you won't be back?
-I'm not greedy,

once you pay up you don't see me no more,

I want it in cash.

You'll uh,

-have to give me time.
-Time for what?

I don't have that sort of money here,

could you come back?

I’ll tell you what,

you get that money,

and you bring it to my place,

at nine

-Morning Maude.
-Morning dr Cooper.

I suppose you've heard the bad news.

No I haven't.

I’ve lost a patient.

-Who is it?
-My problem patient,

I should have known better,

I should have realized that he needed
more help than I was able to give him,

then it might not have happened.

Mr Harrison?


mr Harrison.

I knew he had a force in him,

he was getting closer
to the surface every day,

I never realized,

that something like this would happen,

he killed a man last night Maude,

the police contacted me this morning,

he shot and killed a man
who was trying to get money from him,

-A blackmailer,

a man named French, James French,

he was threatening Harrison
about a young girl,

named Diana,

Harrison wasn't going to


I can't understand where I
could have learned such a thing,

how he could have made such a terrible

it was no cause for blackmail,

no real cause,

there was no Diana,

only Harrison’s

of fantasy,

he was guilt-ridden by
something that never existed,

when the blackmailer
threatened him,

he protected a delusion with murder,

the ultimate,


I think our point should be quite clear,

in these times,

a thorough grounding in psychology
is essential in any profession,

even blackmail,

for receptionist a
slightly different lesson,

never pinch the boss's files,

you see, Maude was tried and punished
as an accomplice to the crime.

In precisely 60 seconds,

I shall return to warn you about next
week's program.

I may not be back with dead end next

you see the producers prefer to be
called intellectuals,

and they feel that my presence here,

tends to give credence to the epithet:

'egghead', it's absurd of course,

next week Alfred Hitchcock Presents,

will be seen in this spot,
until then, good night.