Alfred Hitchcock Presents s03e27 Episode Script

Disappearing Trick

Good evening, fellow athletes.
I believe that everyone owes it to his well-being to indulge in some sport.
My favorite pastime, as you can see, is filching loving cups.
Naturally, I never steal too much at a time for fear of losing my amateur standing.
But the people from whom I take the cups don't mind, I'm sure.
After all, it isn't who wins the cups, it's how you play the game.
By the way, I'm inventing a device that should make tennis much more enjoyable.
It suddenly raises the net half a foot just as the victor leaps over to offer condolences to the loser.
Through it I hope to add laughs.
Before viewing tonight's chronicle, we must identify the party who is footing the bill.
I must apologize for the brevity of this announcement, but this is one of the conditions laid down by our modest sponsor.
That's $10 at cost.
All right, and the first on Santa Anita.
Hi, John.
Who? Oh, sure, Barney.
Misty Day is sixth at Hialeah.
Across the board, huh? Yeah, there's plenty of time.
All right, Barney, you're on.
All right, lady, I got you.
That's Brown Jug in the second at Santa Anita.
Two dollars to show.
That's a real plunger.
Take care of this for me, will you? Hello.
Sure, why not? I work here.
Yeah, Charlie.
How are things with the tennis crowd? They ask about you all the time.
Did you ever figure out how you made out with those rich ladies over at the club? I've got a lot of charm and they can afford it.
Oh, Regis was asking for you.
Yeah, Charlie, I'm listening.
Hi, boss.
Oh, I thought you'd be in La Jolla by now.
You know I couldn't leave without saying goodbye.
Oh, yeah, I know.
I get all choked up, too.
There, that'll make us both feel better, huh? Uh-huh.
Any time I can ever do anything for you.
You're doing it.
That is expense money.
You mean I'm working this weekend? A little bit.
Between sets.
Herbert Gild? You've probably taken calls from him.
He's been a real nice bettor over the past few years.
Nice steady winner, too.
Not a plunger, but a real nice client.
He live in La Jolla? He did or does, I don't know.
Three months ago it says there he stopped calling in.
Now, I don't like to lose a real nice client, Walter.
So, here.
You get in touch with him, huh? Good address.
Best apartment hotel in La Jolla.
Oh, nothing but class.
But that's your kind of business, so buy him a drink.
Get to talk his language.
Maybe even play a little tennis with him.
But get Mr.
Herbert Gild back on our books, huh? Boss, maybe he's got a daughter.
Okay, maybe he's got a daughter.
Thank you.
Have a happy weekend.
Yes? Is this Mr.
Herbert Gild's apartment? Uh-huh.
Who are you? My name is Richmond.
But I don't think that would mean much to Mr.
I don't think it would, either.
Would you like to come in, Mr.
Richmond? If you don't mind.
I'm Mrs.
Won't you sit down? Thank you.
Are you from out of town, Mr.
Richmond? Los Angeles.
I didn't think I'd seen you around.
Is your husband home, Mrs.
Gild? Do you expect him soon? No.
Well, then Have you ever met my husband, Mr.
Richmond? No, I never have.
If you could tell me when you expect him, perhaps I could call later.
Well, I don't expect him.
My husband is dead, Mr.
Oh, I'm sorry, Mrs.
I didn't know.
Why, he's been dead for six months.
You like a drink? Well, I don't want to trouble you.
Well, I'll tell you when it's trouble, okay? Okay.
You look like Scotch and water, right? Right.
Herbert looked like sherry.
Know what I mean? Uh-huh.
That's Herbert on the coffee table.
Surprised? Should I be? Everyone else was.
Including Herbert.
Cheers, Mr.
Cheers, Mrs.
He does look like sherry, doesn't he? He looks nice.
Oh, he was.
Very nice.
I can tell a lot about a person, just looking.
Like what? Oh, well, not everything, of course, but a lot.
Take you, the way you dress, the way you cut your hair.
I can tell you're particular.
You like nice things.
I like nice things.
The way you move, the way you carry yourself, as if you're sure.
No, it's something more than that.
You some kind of athlete? Well, I play a lot of tennis.
See? I can tell a lot.
Just looking.
But not everything.
Oh, well.
Who can tell everything? Did I tell you Herbert drowned? No, you didn't tell me how he died.
He always said he didn't like sailing.
One day, he took a sailboat out from Mission Bay.
They found what was left of it on the rocks by the ocean.
It was a shock, I tell you.
I'm sure it was.
You never said why you wanted to see my husband.
My boss asked me to look him up.
Said he hadn't heard from him for a while.
Just a friendly visit? Just a friendly visit.
I was hoping it was money.
He looks like money, doesn't he? There wasn't much, just a little insurance.
Well, I've got to be going.
Thanks for the drink, Mrs.
I don't usually talk so much.
Does your work bring you down to La Jolla very often, Mr.
Richmond? It's beginning to look like it will.
Goodbye, Mrs.
Oh, it's just that I don't like to close a file on a good customer, Walter.
Of course, when they die, it's not like losing to another bookie.
You're all heart, Regis.
It's not like I knew Herbert Gild.
It's just we made a little money together, that's all.
Looks to me like he did all right for himself.
Well, like I said, conservative.
Not a big plunger.
But a good, steady client.
Placed his last bet with us three months ago.
The 10th of December.
Made almost $600 on a two-horse parlay.
And where did it get him? Hmm? You can't take it with you, Walter.
You're a philosopher, boss.
No luck, huh? Not yet.
Look, look, are you sure that it would be in the papers, what you're looking for? It ought to be.
Well, are you sure it was last September, are you? September's six months ago, isn't it? Well, let me see.
Yeah, six months it is.
Here it is.
Herbert? Herbert Gild! Well, why didn't you say so? Look, I'd like to read this.
Well, I can tell you the whole thing.
I knew him for years! Anything you want to know about Herbert Gild, I can tell you.
Just want to make sure it was September when he died.
All right, drowned.
Presumed drowned.
Or haven't you got that far yet? Presumed drowned? Yeah, they had to presume.
They never found hide nor hair of his body! Well, Mr.
You're not surprised, Mrs.
Did I say I was? Did your boss send you back? You know he didn't.
Questions are more fun when you know the answers.
So I brushed my hair.
It's very pretty hair.
Shiny and very soft.
How do you know it's soft? I can tell a lot by looking.
I brush it 100 strokes a night.
Must take a lot of time.
I'm loaded with time.
The name's Laura.
I've leveled with you, Walter.
There's no money.
Just me.
I believe you.
Are you disappointed? I was.
Just a little insurance.
Isn't that what you said? Uh-huh.
It's a nice view.
Must cost a lot of money.
It's Herbert's view.
Five-year lease paid in advance.
It's La Jolla.
That's what I wanted.
That's what I got.
Who doesn't want La Jolla? From the wrong side of the San Diego Navy Yard, it looks like Paradise.
Just five miles down that road.
How do you get there? Herbert? He was nice.
He was sweet.
I liked him.
And his money.
His money I could have loved.
Enough of it.
But it was a fair fight.
We both got cheated a little.
Do you think Herbert knew he was cheated? He wasn't dumb.
You never told me they never found his body.
You never asked me.
Maybe he isn't dead.
I saw the boat.
He's dead.
What a crazy thing to say.
I've got an inventive mind.
Like what? Like suppose Herbert knew he was cheated.
Like suppose he wanted to get out.
So he drowns? Disappears, fakes it.
The boat on the rocks.
He fakes it so well everyone's willing to say he's drowned.
Even though they can't find his body.
You want me to ask why.
So he can go away.
Take up a new life, take a new name and live like a nice old man should without a young wife he can't hold.
I can't use it.
No? Well, like you said, it was a crazy thing to say.
That was a good volley! You're all right! I'll catch my breath in a week or two.
No, really, you play a better game than I thought.
Well, I play other games besides tennis.
Tennis is for kids.
This kid is thirsty.
Always come to me with small problems I can solve.
How are you on big problems? Try me.
I want to go away.
I thought you liked La Jolla.
I need a change.
Let's go someplace tomorrow.
What makes that a big problem? You.
Where do you want us to go? Oh, anywhere.
Mountains? Desert? City? Anywhere.
You're easy to please.
Not a bit.
Do you care where we go? No.
I'd sure hate to run into your husband.
So skin diving is out.
Seriously, didn't he ever take you anywhere? Just Del Mar and Tijuana.
Herbert was a great one for horse racing.
He could drive 15 miles just to see a race.
Well, how about it? Well, I'll need a day or so.
Now look, lady, I gotta work sometime, you know.
And I don't think I can make it tomorrow.
Only weekends at Caliente.
I've got it.
Ten dollars across the board on No Taxes.
I hope so, too.
Walter Richmond, long time no see.
Long time, Julio, long time.
Well, how's business? Poco poco.
Ah! You still in Los Angeles with Regis? Yeah.
And it's poco poco, too.
What brings you to Tijuana? Did a horse run out on you? No, a man, maybe.
A client.
I thought you might know about him.
Maybe he's my client now.
If he is, you can keep him as a client.
Herbert Gild.
Herbert Gild.
He'd be a fool to use his own name, Julio.
He's an old guy, gray hair, kind of a soft look about him.
Well, this is most old guys, Walter.
You're right.
This Herbert Gild, he's in trouble? He's supposed to be dead.
Old clients, I've got, but dead ones, no.
The thing is, I don't think he's dead.
They found a sailboat he'd rented cracked up on the rocks outside of San Diego.
But they never found his body.
Well, it's a big ocean.
Thing is, he was given up for dead six months ago, September.
But he called his last bet into Regis on the 10th of December.
That's not easy, Walter.
You think he came to Tijuana? The easiest place to disappear.
Over an international border, and racing at Caliente every weekend.
That's logical.
This Herbert Gild, you have a picture of him? It would help, you know.
I can get one.
I won't be long, darling.
Fix yourself a drink.
Don't worry about me.
Just take your time.
I've got a surprise for you.
Oh? What's that? It is a surprise.
You'll see in a minute.
That's a look I don't know.
Now, I thought you could tell a lot by looking.
Not everything.
I don't like to be kept waiting.
I've been waiting for you all day.
This is to say I didn't like it, either.
Remind me to keep you waiting more often.
It pays off.
I have no need for insurance, Mr.
But a man of your age, Mr.
Fielding, it would be a valuable No family, no dependents.
Now, you'd be wasting your time.
I never waste time, Mr.
How did you find out? I'm an insurance investigator, Mr.
When a case looks phony, we pay up but we don't give up.
Especially if we can't find the body.
I see.
Does my wife know about this? No.
No, nobody knows, but you and me.
What about your office? I never make out a report unless I have something to say.
You've done very well at the track recently, Mr.
I shouldn't have been able to live without it or "die" either, for that matter.
I don't regret it, though.
I've been quite happy, really.
May I offer you a sherry? No, thanks.
Tell me, Mr.
Richmond, I don't suppose I could repay the insurance company the amount they paid off on my policy.
Pay off an insurance company, Mr.
Gild? No, I suppose not.
Understand, you have my sympathies, but the company's just a machine.
No pity, no heart.
You're a young man, Mr.
Surely you must have a heart.
Well, yes.
Would $10,000 give you a poor memory? Are you bribing me, Mr.
Gild? Well, if I've offended you, you only have to turn in your report.
Fifteen thousand.
Ten thousand cash.
That's the end of it, Mr.
Don't ever come back for more.
I've always wanted to retire early in life, Mr.
Lie on the beach and play tennis.
Yes, that's a young man's game.
And I mean it, Mr.
Richmond, don't ever come back for more.
Looks like I'm in the driver's seat, doesn't it, Walter? I haven't been giving you enough credit, dear.
No, but you'll learn to, darling.
Don't you trust me? Not for a moment.
How did you know I was here? Had you followed all weekend.
Do you want to give me the keys or shall I call my husband? Look at it this way, darling.
Now you'll be able to buy all the new tires you need.
How much did Herbert give you? Five thousand.
Walter, you must learn to be honest with me.
All right, 10,000.
There'll be no more.
Don't be ridiculous.
Ten thousand won't keep you in tennis balls.
There'll be more.
Next time, I'll go to see Herbert.
Oh, darling, don't look so worried.
We'll be happy.
We deserve each other.
You do at that, my dear.
Herbert, I'm not sure I would have recognized you.
How did you get here so fast? You seemed to be having tire trouble when I passed you.
Look, you paid me off.
I'm not going to bother you anymore.
I might have believed that.
Just like I might have believed you're the only one who knew about me until I saw you wearing my cuff links.
Laura is the only one who could have given them to you.
Oh, what are you going to do about it, Herbert, call the police? He's not dead, is he? No, he's all right.
Darling, don't worry.
I know a doctor.
I'll take you to him.
Thank you.
Easy now.
You'll be all right.
May I see Mrs.
Gild now, Doctor? Your friend's out in the waiting room.
Would you bring her in, please? Now, easy.
There, that's right.
She seems to have stepped out.
I thought I'd bring your jacket.
About that shoulder, it'll heal all right in time.
Though, I'm afraid it'll always be stiff.
But that's not too tough.
Unless you happen to be a tennis player.
Since tonight's story was an allegory, I offer this footnote to make everything clear.
Walter represented youthful innocence.
Gild was unrequited love.
And, of course, Mr.
Gild symbolized Mrs.
Gild's husband.
The following item could use many things, but a footnote is not one of them.
Once this is over, I shall flip back.
Since this program is on film and will probably be shown for many years to come, I should like to address my next remarks to those of you who are watching the show in the year 2000.
Please write in at once and tell us what life is like.
I'm quite curious.
Until next week, good night.

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