Sanford and Son (1972–1977): Season 5, Episode 4 - The Sanford Arms - full transcript

With the bank ready to foreclose, Fred and Lamont desperately seek to find tenants for the Sanford Arms.


Hello. Herald Examiner?

Let me speak to "Herald."

Hello, "Herald."

Listen, this is Fred G. Sanford,

and I'm opening
up a rooming house

next door to my junkyard,

and I want to
put an ad in there.

Yeah, here it is.

Uh, got... you ready?

"Come and stay in the
luxurious Sanford Arms,

"the ultimate in high
rise and low living.

"Exotic plumbing.

"No children, no pets, puppies,
guppies, or winos allowed.

"Only the most refined and
suave clientele need apply.

Special rates for
topless dancers."

Yes, I said topless dancers.

"Call or apply in person,
9114 South Central,

one of Los Angeles'
most desirable addresses."

You got that?

Thanks, "Herald."


Hi, son.

Hi, Pop.

Hi, son. You back
from Tijuana already?

Already? I was gone two days.

Wait till you see

the tables and the chairs
and all the good stuff I got

for the Sanford Arms.

Hey, tell me all
about our new tenants.

Well, son, they're
so nice and quiet,

you'd hardly know
they were there.

That's great, Pop.

That's because
they're not there.

I ain't rented a room all day.

No tenants?


Pop, we borrowed
$1800 from the bank, man,

and we done spent most
of it fixing Julio's place up.

Yeah, $300 worth
of chili stain remover

and $19.98 for a pair of
them pointy-toed shoes.

What did you need a pair
of pointy-toed shoes for?

To kill all them
cockroaches in the corner.

Pop, we've got to make
a loan payment tomorrow,

and we can't do that unless
we've got tenants paying rent.

Now, didn't you
interview anybody?

I interviewed an old couple,
but they sort of got offended.


They said they wanted to
live in a building with security,

and I told them to
go suck on a blanket.

That's just great,
Pop. That's great.

Hey, but look,
son. Look at this.

See, I put this ad in...

See, I wrote this ad up here

and phoned it into
the newspaper.

Topless dancers?

Yeah, and this is just
the beginning, son.

From Sanford Arms, we...

It's just a step away from where
we own our own huge hotel.

That's me... Howard Huge.

Pop, we're not even
going to be living here

if we don't make that
loan payment tomorrow.

Listen, son, don't worry.
The banks are our friends.

They want us and like us.

They want to see America
move forward and do good.

And another thing...

you've heard that commercial
on TV where is says...

building America"?

Would you be serious?

If we don't fill
those rooms, man,

we're going to
be out of a house.


Ah, speaking of outhouses...

Forget him, Aunt Esther.

What can we do for you?

You can do a lot, Lamont.

In fact, you both can
make a big donation

to charity.

Oh, you want us to donate
you to Multiple Uglyosis?

Watch it, sucker.

Lamont, our church
is being repainted.

Yeah, I know. I know.

And I thought you'd be happy

to donate one of the rooms
in your boarding house

as a meeting place
for my congregation.

You mean for free?

Of course.

After all, charity
begins at home.

But not in the home
where the buffalo roam.

Get out, bison.

Why don't you go somewhere

and celebrate the bison-tennial?

Don't pay him no attention.

Come on into the kitchen
and put on a pot of coffee,

and I'll talk to you about it.

All right. Good idea.

Take her into the kitchen.

Maybe them flies will
follow you all in there.






Are you Mr. Sanford?

Mm, yes.

Mr. Sanford,

are the rooms next
door still available?

Yes, they are, and I am too.

Come right in.

Thank you.

You're kind of sweet.


Now, exactly how
much is the room?

The room's $80 a
month in advance,

but in your case,

I'm willing to extend
you a little credit.

We'll just spread
your month's rent

over the next 15 years.

Thanks, but I always
like to deal in cash.


Now, $160 should cover
two months in advance.

Yeah, let me hold that.

It's all there.

You don't have to count it.

I don't want to count it,

I just want to hold
it next to my cheeks.

Well, now, Mr. Sanford. Uh-huh?

After I move in,

I hope that you and I can come
to some little understanding.


See, I understand,
and you understand,

and when we understand,
your rent gets cheaper.

You understand?

Hold on, Fred Sanford.

What is this?

Uh, excuse me, honey.

Uh, this is my son, Lamont,

and... this is our plumber.

The plumber?


You can see

that all her pipes
backed up into her face.

Why, Fred Sanford,
you... Wait a minute.


Wait a minute!

I know this woman.
Ooh, I know this woman.

Lamont... Huh?

Our church has been trying

to run this woman out
of our neighborhood

for months.

Well, that's too bad, because
I just rented her a room.

Don't you know that
this is a fallen woman?

Well, I'm trying
to break her fall.

Fred Sanford,

if that woman moves
in, I'm calling the police.

FRED: Huh?

Well, I think I'd
better be going.

It was nice knowing you.

Wait a... Hold on,
sister. Wait a minute.

Don't you move another feather.

I'm taking you to Reverend Ike

while's there's still
time to save your soul.


Wait a minute, now.

Now, you can save her
soul, but save the rest for me.


Come on, sister!

Well, now look what
you've done, man.

Look what time it is now, Pop,

and we still haven't
rented a room.

Don't worry. I'll
take care of it.

You don't seem to realize

if we don't come
up with that money

by tomorrow,

we are going to lose everything.

Don't worry. The
bank will let us slide.

Oh, yeah, sure.
Banks do it all the time.

"Hello there. I'm speaking
for the Bank of America

and I'm just here to tell
you that we let things slide."

Just relax, will you?

How am I supposed to relax...


I'll get it.

Yeah, get it.

Mr. Sanford? Hello,
and how are you?

My name is Percy G. Hopweather.

I'm the Assistant Loan Officer
at Central Trust and Savings.

Just thought I'd drop by and
say "Hello, and how are you?"

All of us at C, T and S
are just pleased as punch

that you and your father have
joined our Executive Loan Club.

Good, I...

And remember,
we're your friends.

If you have any problem at all,

don't hesitate to
give us a buzz.


We're here to see that
you start off on the right foot.

Bzzz... We care. Bzzz...

We help... Bzzz...
We sympathize.

We are broke.

We foreclose.

Well, I'll just buzz off now.

And remember, fellows,

try to think of our bank
with warmth and affection,

sort of like we're
the fairy godmother

in Cinderella.


Because if you don't
pay up by 3:00 tomorrow,

we'll turn your house
into a debtors' prison.

Ah, a little financial funny.

Yeah, that was
funny, Mr. Hopweather.

Listen, I'd like to
make a small deposit.

Oh, good. How much?

How about me putting
five in your mouth?

Oh, wonderful.
Fine... very good...

Jim Dandy. Perfect.
Thank you very much.

See you tomorrow.
Have a good day.

There you go, son. Look at that.

That'll do it, Pop.

I want to take it over
to the Sanford Arms

and stay over there

in case any, you know,
possible tenants come over.

Right, and I'll stay here

in case anybody
calls me on the phone

from that ad I put in the paper.

Just remember, Pop, we've
got until the bank closes today

to get those rooms filled.

Don't worry. We'll
get the rooms filled.

Have I ever let you
down? Don't answer that.


I'll answer that.

Need a pair of skates to
keep walking across here...


Yes... Yes, this is
the landlord speaking,

Fred G. Sanford.

What? Do you need references?

Uh, if you've been
acquainted with $80,

come on over.

All right.

Now we're getting somewhere.



We may be getting
somewhere... Get a pair of skates...

Hey, hey. What's
happening, Daddy-o?



Listen, mister, you must
have the wrong address.

The freak-out is at the park.

No, no, hold on.

Now, ain't you the guy
that put this ad in the paper

about some groovy pads?


"Rooms to rent," huh?

Oh... oh yeah.

Uh, how would you like
a nice garden apartment?

Oh, yeah.

Well, go out there and
sleep in the crab grass.

Oh, man, lay off.

Now, you're talking to a drummer

with one of the best rock groups

in the country.

Dig this.

Wait a minute, man.




You should have been here when
I was killing them cockroaches.

Look, man, lay off, huh?

The group's got
a gig in this town,

and I need a place to crash.

Try the freeway.

Dad, why don't you
and I plant ourselves,

right, and then
you can rap to me...

about the pad.

Dig it?

I... don't understand...
anything you said.

Now, butt out.

All right.

Here's two months'
rent in advance.

Butt in.

Listen, you go ahead
and see my son.

He'll take care of you.

All right. Far out.

You're beautiful, man.

Later, huh?

Yeah. The later the better.


going to have to get me

one of them skateboards...

If I'm going to keep
running this place.

Hello. Watts Holiday Inn.


For the best in the bed,
come sleep with Fred.


No, we don't have waterbeds,
but you can come over here.

We've got a nice sink. Bye.


Oh, my goodness gracious.

Maybe I shouldn't
open up this room now.

I'm to go deaf in here.

Excuse me, are
you Fred G. Sanford?

Are you looking for a room?

Yes, I am.

Yes, I'm him. Come in.

Say, this is a
fine-looking place

you have here, Mr. Sanford.

Yeah, it was on the
cover of a magazine,

Home and Garbage.

Hey, listen, Mr... Hutton.

G.F. Hutton,

and when Hutton
speaks, everybody listens.

Well, listen, Hutton,

come on in the kitchen.

I'll fix you some
sweet roll and coffee.

That'd be real nice.
Wipe your feet there

before you bring that
stuff into the kitchen.

Come on in and
make yourself to home.

You can sit down over there.

Uh, thank you, Mr. Sanford.

Got some good hot
coffee on the stove...


Here you go.

Say, um, how much are
you asking for a room?

Oh, the rooms are free.

The sweet rolls and
the coffee is $80.

Now, that's funny, you know?

I love a man with
a sense of humor.

You know, I haven't
seen you around here.

Are you from around here?

Yes, I am,

but for the last several years,
I've been incommunicado.

No kidding. That's funny.

My son was just in Tijuan-o.

You know, Hutton,
I live by instinct,

and my instinct tells
me that you all right.

Uh, if you want the
room, you can have it.

Oh, thanks, Fred... Yeah.

But I gotta play it
straight with you.

I'm an ex-con, and
I just got out of jail.

Well, I'm gonna play it
straight with you, Hutton.

I'm your ex-landlord,
and get out of my house.

Please, Mr. Sanford,

my career as a thief is over.

Your career as a tenant is over.

Please, give me a
chance. I'm reformed.

I'm orthodox. Out.

All right, I'm going. I'm going.

Wait a minute, Hutton.


My cup runneth away.

Oh, sorry.

You'd think after 30
years in the big house,

people would have
changed a little.

Wait a minute.

You've been in big
house for 30 years?

You must've did something awful.

Oh, not really.

Just petty theft.

My original sentence
was six months,

but you see, I had
this ugly sister-in-law.

Ugly sister-in-law?

She used to come
up every visiting day

and bug me.

Real ugly.

Looked like a buffalo.

Come sit down here, Hutton.

Now, tell me all about it.

Well, here we are,
Mr. and Mrs. Lawrence.

It's a nice apartment.

It's a perfect thing
for a newlywed couple

like yourself.


Oh, Roger!

Excuse me, was
it something I said?

Oh, no, Mr. Sanford.
Janet's just happy,

and she always cries
when she's happy.

Oh, our first little love nest.

Mm. Mm.

Oh, hey, hey.

Excuse me.

I'm sorry, Mr. Sanford.
Janet's just...

I know, she's happy.

Excuse me, Mr. Sanford.
May I use the bathroom?

Oh, sure. It's right
through that door.

Thank you.

Say, look, listen,

if she doesn't
like the bathroom,

I can change it.

Change it? Why?

See, while I was
away, my father...

I let my father work
on one of the rooms,

and that's the room
he wanted to work on.

Okay. Excuse me.

Roger, do you have a dime?

I-I can get it fixed.

Should we take it?

Oh, yes, Roger. I like it.


Mr. Sanford, here's
$80 in advance.

Oh, great.

Listen, you're not
making a mistake.

You're gonna be
very, very, very, very...



Pop! Hey, Pop.

Yeah, son.

Hey, how are you doing?

Great, man. I just
rented another room.

Oh, good.

Yeah, but listen, we're
still $50 short, man,

so we gonna have
to rent that last room.


I'll get it.

Yeah, get it.


Ah... Mr. Sanford, Lamont,

buenos días,
bonjour, buon giorno.

Or as they say to
me in Watts, uh...

You know, nobody says
anything to me in Watts.

Uh, what's on your mind, Hoppy,

because my father
and I are real busy.

Oh, right.

Then I will get
straight to the point,

right down to the nifty-grifty.


Oh, right, nitty-gritty.

I understand

you still have a room available
over in the Sanford Arms,

and I'd like to rent it.

Why would you want
to live over there?

Oh, it's not for me.
It's for my mother.

Your mother? Your mother?

Yeah, you see, she just
moved out here from the east,

and I thought rather
than a lonely apartment,

she'd rather be in a place

where there's a lot of
other people around.

Look, she's right out
there in the squad car.

Why don't I just go and get her

so you can meet her?

I'll be right back.

Why would he want his
mother to live over there?

Well, probably
because it's on his beat,

and he can stop home
and have milk and cookies.

Uh, uh...


Mr. Sanford, Lamont,
this is my mom...

Lamont, Mr. Sanford...

Buenos dias, buon
giorno, bonjour.

HOPPY: Mrs. May Hopkins.

Howard, why aren't
you making out a report?

Report, Mom?

Obviously, this place
has been ransacked.

Mom is a store
detective at Robertson's.

Yes, that is correct.

I am responsible

for the entire
lingerie department.

That's great.

Yes, and I'm happy to say

that after 30 years of service,

no one has ever ripped
off one of my bras.

I can understand that.

Mom, Mr. Sanford
and Lamont there

are gonna be your new landlords.

Wonderful. Thank you, gentlemen.

I want you to know

how I look forward
to living with you

in this great melting pot,

side by side, arm in
arm, forward together.


Oh, Mom, that was beautiful.

Well, yes, thank you.

Wasn't that
beautiful, Mr. Sanford,

the way she, uh...

I... Look, I gotta get
back on the beat now.

If it's okay with
you, Mr. Sanford,

here is $80 in advance for Mom.

I'm gonna have to think it over.

Pop, the bank
closes in 20 minutes.

I thought it over.

Oh, marvelous.

Oh, Mom? Oh, no.

Let's go, Mom. All
right. Oh, and uh...

Never forget black is bountiful!

No, no, that's beautiful, Mom.

Right, right. Beautiful.


HOPPY: Well, uh...

Later off.

No, no, dear, that's "later on."

Oh, right! Later on.


Mom's right. It was "later on."

The bank! The bank!

I tell you, Pop,

that was the best
meal you ever cooked.

That's because

that's my extra special
celebration dinner.

Now, here's the
"croup de grass."

Hey, man, champagne.

Yeah, and look at that date.


That was a very good month.



Okay, first you.

Me first. You know, Pop,

I tell you, man,
it's gonna be great

having that extra
money rolling around

the first of every month.

Yeah, and later on,
we can jack up the rent.

I don't think we
should do that, Pop.

I don't mean really do it.

Just promise them an elevator,
then we'll give them the shaft.

That was the best
idea ever came up with,

fixing up Julio's place.

Now we can just lay
back and count the money.


I'm getting kind of tired, Pop.

I think I'll turn in.

Yeah, well, go ahead, son.


Sleep until noon if you want to,

because now
things are different.

You're an independent man.


You're a... You're a homeowner,

and a landowner,
and a hotel owner,

and... You're a
giant. You're a king!



Get the door, dummy.

Mr. Sanford, I am here as
the newly elected president

of the Tenants'
Housing Committee.

We are here to register
the following complaints:

the plumbing is stopped
up, the heaters do not work,

the carpets are filthy...

We're all out of
dimes. That's right.

The windows need
washing... [CRYING]

What's wrong with her?

She's just happy.

The oven doors will not open.

You cannot open
the oven doors...

Okay, okay.

Listen, we'll fix
everything. MAY: Splendid.

Oh, by the way, Fred,

I met this wonderful lady,

and since I'm going
to be working at night,

I'm going to let
her and her friends

use my room in the evenings.

For what?

Choir practice!

Choir practice?

That's right, choir practice.



Oh, it's so pretty.

Oh, look at it. [MAY CHUCKLES]

My goodness, it's beautiful,

and it has my name
on the label, "Esther."


Oh, Mrs. Hopkins,
thank you so much.

I just love it. Oh!

It's nothing at all, my
dear. Happy to do it.

Just a little wedding
present for you, and oh...

Mrs. Anderson, I
have a little something

for you too.

Oh, thank you, sweetheart.

You're so nice.

Oh, well, it's the
least I could do

to repay you for
the time you've spent

teaching me the customs
of the ghetto, the language,

the talk of the
people on the streets.


That kind of thing... Come in.

Listen, I just want
to remind you ladies

that tomorrow is rent day,

and I want my money in my hand

no later than 8 a.m.

You got that...

And listen, you
get her out of here.

I told you what the rules were.

No animals allowed!

Why, Fr... Please,
Mrs. Anderson. If I may?

Be my guest.

Watch it, sucker!

How was that?