Alfred Hitchcock Presents (1955–1962): Season 7, Episode 31 - Most Likely to Succeed - full transcript

Dave Sumner drops in on his old college friend Stanley Towers, whom he hasn't seen for 20 years. Dave has fallen on hard times and actually never amounted to much, even though he was ...


good evening. I hope it doesn't
disillusion you to see me doing such

menial labor, but i like to demonstrate
that i'm just an ordinary person.

besides i need the money

you see this isn't my
car it's my brother's

he hires me to
do work of this sort

he keeps telling me
it's for my own good

i suppose it is in
a way since the car

will become mine.

if anything untoward
should happen to brother.

most peculiar

i don't believe
you've met my brother.

goodness he used
to drop his h's, now

he's dropped the entire


i closed the trunk because
i know he'd like it that way

he always hated our stories and we
have one coming up in just one minute



could i please see mr towers,

my name is dave sumner i'm
an old friend of his from college

well okay but uh

you'd better go around
to the back entrance back.

it's not just that you spend
10 hours a day at the office

it's all those stupid
business dinners stanley

the least you could do would be
take me dancing every once in a while

oh honey, the least you can do
is just let me finish reading this

report. Look, why don't you go
out shopping at something, huh?

- What is it hilda?
- It's for mr towers ma'am

there's a man at the back
door he says he knows you

- The back door?
- Yes sir he says his name is sumner

says he's an old friend
of yours from collegue


and dave sumner
tell him to come right.

i don't think he wants to come in mr
towers he don't look like somebody who.

i mean his clothes oh all
right i'll i'll go out and see him

dave sumner well you're
the last person in the world

well it's got to be 20 years, huh?
- Yeah 20 years at least

come on in sit down.

i i was over in uh hartsdale
doing some odd jobs

i remembered you
had a place near here i

just thought i'd stop by

- i hope you don't mind?
- mine of course not

see you've got a
great place here stanley

well listen what in the world have
happened to you, since college i mean.

a lot of things i guess

- Most of them bad.
- Well i can't figure it out

you were the head of our class dave.

You are president of
our senior class, you are

honor student? valedictorian,
you know i still remember

the day you walked
up stage at graduation

why you had a stack of
awards and honors up to here.

- yeah it was a long time ago.
- yeah, it sure was

listen are you hungry?

want something. to
eat i wouldn't mind

boy i i still remember how
we used to sit around and talk

you know what the fraternity
house, remember? about how we felt

about things and you know
what we what we wanted out of life

and we we never did
see things the same

way did we?
- ah it's not.

yeah, yeah i had a
different picture of the world

nice and simple if you didn't
take he got taken that was it

well i saw it happen with my old man,
with that extrusion machine he invented

he sold the patent for 500
bucks and some big company

turned around and made
five million dollars with it.

well that's when i decided
you take it where you can find it

do you know how old i was
when i made my first million... 32

dave. But listen i'm not
letting you do any talking

what about yourself dave,
what's been happening to you

not much to tell, things
just, didn't pan out

since i graduated i
tried, all kinds of work

lately i just been picking up jobs
wherever i could get them

listen.. if there's
something, i could do around

the place, stanley.
anything at all.. huh?

yeah, i don't know, dave we
got a pretty big staff right now

but for old dave well, well sure we'll
find something for you to do.

hey you can help
out around the house

and you can drive my wife
around when i'm using the chauffeur

hey you can help out
when i got people over i

i got big business
meetings here all the time

you know you can't
work an eight hour day

when you're the boss
you know what i mean dave

well what do you say sound okay it?

- sounds fine.
- okay it's a deal listen i'll

pay you 80 bucks a week in
your keep and uh let's let's do

something about these clothes
huh dave it's good to see you

do i have to sign all these
that's right mrs towers

- all six copies?
- yep sign all

six copies.

well that's all i've
been doing all night long

person could get writer's crab.

well it's worth it darling you are now
the sole owner of a million dollar business

oh. thanks dave said would you put
something else on the phonograph.

well stanley i just don't understand
i mean i know it's legal and all

but you know i really don't know
anything about running a factory..

but you don't have to
worry about it mrs towers

you'll be getting rid of your
interest in the plant in six months

just as soon as we
get rid of it at a loss

seems silly to me buy a
whole factory just to lose money

well that's the way we do business
these days darling. Isn't that right jim?

yeah that's right.

say what about my cousin freddy can't
we get him that deal as plant manager

well if you still want him stanley, but if
you put any more relatives on the payroll

we won't need an organization
chart just a family tree.

well.. i guess that covers
everything for this evening.

Gee thanks for coming by
the house harry, i'll see you

back in town. And uh..
give my regards to the wife.

i will.. thank you very
much. Come on i'll see you

to the door good
night mrs towers

Good Night,

say, uh.. what did you
say your name was?

sumner dave sumner ma'am.
- oh yeah that's right dave

would you get mr tara's
another drink please.

or just bring the whole bottle.
- yes ma'am

you know what.

my husband just loves
the drink after every meeting.


i'll try and remember that.


- hey it was a good meeting.
- oh yeah.

hey where's my drink.

what's his name's getting your fresh one

dave honey how many times i
got to tell you his name is dave

oh, thanks thanks dave. Listen it's
after midnight why don't you hit the sack

and uh.. maybe you can brush
up my clothes for the morning.

yes sir.

what are you laughing at?
- Oh nothing i was i was just thinking.

- oh yeah?
- yeah - what were you thinking

thinking about college.


yeah you know dave and i
went to college together. We were

buddies, as a matter of fact
we were in the same fraternity.

i only hear something
i didn't tell you did you

know that he was president
of our senior class. Yeah.

yeah good old dave was top
scholar in the whole school


That's right, yeah dave
was always a very funny guy

he figured all you had to have in this world
were top grades and high scholastic honor

he thought all you had to
do was play the game right

only he didn't know the rules
not like i did.. Wait a minute.

wait a minute i want
to show you something

well you call it your book i
didn't know you were sentimental

here let me see that.. That's a picture.

that's not what i want to show you.

let me see. well well.. Little
stanley towers. Stanley towers

business administration vice
president dance committee

- Is that all? - I'll give you that.
- You let me see.

wait a minute oh here it is

- here read.
- that a david l

sumner. Phi beta kappa,
president of the senior class.

chairman debating society


the lancer winner
of polk award for

scholastic excellence
voted most likely

to succeed.
- yeah that's the part

that's the best part of all,
voted most likely to succeed.

uh, say uh, do you
have the right time

i'm sorry i don't have a watch

oh well it doesn't make
any difference anyway

stan will come home when
he gets good and ready.

do you mind if i ask you something?
- no not at all

- Welcome.
- how come what?

i mean how come a man like you see
my husband says you've got a real brain

how come you're
doing work like this

it's the best i could get

i uh saw your picture
in the college yearbook.

you haven't changed very much, not
like stanley boy he changes every year.

hey would you mind
me i mean you can fix

the books later i just kind
of wanted to talk a little bit

oh yeah what is it
you'd like to talk about

well you're so smart you tell me

no i just wanted to ask about you
maybe stanley isn't curious but i am

well it's not very much to say. I
uh, do odd jobs I, try to do them well

was that what you call success.

maybe it is.
- okay if you don't want me around i'll go.

no no no no

it's your house mrs towers

that's so, huh. yeah i
suppose it is in my name

stanley has so many
kooky deals going i

never know what's
mine and what isn't

come on now what about it was
there some woman or something

was that a stupid question.
- no no no it's a very good question.

yes there was a woman.

everything.. seemed.. fine.

when i graduated i never had a
moment's doubt about my future

the class even voted
me most likely to succeed

but i guess you know that if
you saw the yearbook.


would you like to have a seat


well i i took a job with, a brokerage,
firm a friend of my old man's

that was my first mistake.. I ended
up marrying the boss's daughter

that was my second mistake. She..

she was no angel
let me put it that way

i went along with
her as long as i could

when i couldn't
take it anymore i

i got a divorce

from her from the job
both at the same time

that's when i discovered i
wasn't much of a businessman

i couldn't make out with
any other brokerage firm

i paid alimony, for
six years until she got

married again. That's
when i started drinking.

i guess that's what finally did it

and i thought i had it rough you.


oh it doesn't look
like it does it big

house a lot of money and a lot of


little louise johnson
regular cinderella huh

the only thing wrong is parents charming

well you've been around
here a couple of weeks you

know what goes on he
uses his house like a hotel

it is in one business meeting, it's
another if he can't do business, at lunch

he does it at dinner, he can't do it
in the daytime, he does it at night.

that must be pretty rough on you

oh you have no idea

do you know that even when we're
alone he's thinking about business

he's always, got to come up
with some smart, new way to

put something over on his
competitor or the tax boys.

Now... Wouldn't you think that i could pick
out the furniture for our own home?

oh no he has his company order it.

and then he just has
a truckload set up here

and you know that new wing
we're building on the house - yes.

where do you think all that
lumbering stuff is coming from.

he has his company, out
of that and then he makes

a deal with the contractor,
just to send it up here.

i don't even think
that's legal to you.

I doubt it

he has a thousand
little things like that

like putting his family on
the payroll at fancy salaries

and then having him kick back half

or he comes up to
something like that every day

and i'm just getting sick of it.
i'm just getting sick to death

mrs. towers
- why?

is there something i can do
for you get you a drink baby

you know dave i think you're right

success is a lousy
thing it really is

it's better to be a bum.
- i don't know

- that no i mean you have more fun that way

i'm so bored here all i
can think of to do is to eat.

- hey, that's a good idea.
- what's that?

why don't you fix me
a hot fudge sundae

something real warm

yes ma'am

hello dave, buddy boy.
- good evening

what a head oh

hey fix me something would you
dave a little something fizzy.. huh.

yes sir i think there's something..
- no i don't mean that dave come on make me a drink

give me a little scotch of soda.
- yes sir.

boy these business meetings
really take the starch out of you.

sometimes i wonder
why i work so hard.

i know why money dave

the lousy part is it's getting ten times
as hard to make a dollar nowadays

by the way the government's got things
rigged you gotta work every minute

you gotta try all the angles
you can't ever let down.

gotta keep going tote
that bar lift that bail

and get a good lawyer
you wind up in jail

now you ain't got it so bad dave
what you gotta worry about's a

good meal now, and then
but when you got money

boy that's when your
troubles really begin.

is it worth it.

sure it's worth it, nothing else is, worth
anything haven't, you learned that yet

you know when you're
shining lights, and on a

bright, play the game
according to all the rules.

ah you're okay dave
you're a nice guy

what a shame you're born a sucker

dave i'd like you to
drive me someplace

oh yes ma'am where to.

any place new york boise idaho
just so long as it's away from here

something wrong?

i don't know the same thing that's
always wrong, only this time i've had it

stan and i had a
fight last night i told

him what i thought, his phony
business, deals i told him

what i thought, of being
nothing, but a tax deduction

huh uh.. where's
mr towers now?

we're probably setting up some
phony corporation or i don't know

would you take the bags out to
the car there's some more in the hall

all right.

yeah you don't belong
in this place either what


no you're a nice guy, but you won't
be if you stay around him very long

look why don't we go
someplace together.. Just any place

i can't do that
mrs towers.

well it's only gonna get, worse
he'll just make more, and more deals.

i'm sorry i can't


what the heck's
going on here?

nothing i'm just
going on a little trip

- trip where?
- any place.

just so long as it's
away from here

wait a minute
what's this all about

i have tried to tell you a million
times what it's all about why

don't you ask your friend dave
here maybe you'll listen to him

- dave huh

come on dave you're the big brain
around here tell me what's going on?

nothing, nothing. mrs towers wanted
me to drive her someplace that's all.

give me the keys

give me the car keys any driving to
be done around here i'll do it myself

you take that bag
and go upstairs louise

you go see everyone
for the money i owe you.


you mean i'm fired.
- i'm afraid so dave i don't

think this arrangement
of ours is gonna work out.

go on consider yourself
lucky to be out of this place

i'll talk to you later

- well?
- well, i'm sorry

if that's the way you wanted.
- that's the way i want it

well he's gone i
suppose you'd like to

go with him too wouldn't you

leave me alone

you're not kidding anybody
louise you're not going anywhere

you like what you've got too
much you're not giving it up

well isn't that, right?
- leave me alone!

you know where your
bread's buttered not with a

guy like dave summoner
but with someone like me.

well isn't that true.. well say it..

go on say it

it's true.
- i'll take that bag upstairs

well let's get this over with as soon as
possible i should like to sneak in a couple

of holes of golf this afternoon.

that's a good idea we sure
have got the weather for it

figure this meeting won't
last more than an hour

nah we've been over
all this stuff before

hey how's your golf
game harry still shooting

in the low 90s huh it's
better now since i've

been working with the
pro oh stanley i'd like

to meet frank anderson
from our new york office

he knows everybody down here
i'm certainly glad to meet you frank

uh you think this is gonna take very

well it all depends on
what kind of long? a

case they've got. let's
walk in and find out.

make yourselves comfortable
gentlemen i'll be with you in a moment

cars i believe you
know mr summer. - dave?

you mean to say you know that man of
course i know we went to school again

he worked at my house only a month ago.
- that explains it.

treasury department probably assigned
him your case because he once knew you.

me to tell me he's one of
them he's a tax investigator

more than that he's the most successful
agent in the treasury department

i do believe that was the most
frightening story we have ever presented

fortunately will only frighten
one segment of our population.

taxpayers now for
something equally frightening.

a commercial, after
which i shall appear.

that is all for tonight, and it was quite
enough to, next week i shall be here again

and i know my brother will be also.

i seem to have locked
the trunk key inside.

So until then, good night.