Alfred Hitchcock Presents

Season 2 Episode 9

Crack of Doom

Aired Sunday 9:30 PM Nov 25, 1956 on CBS

Episode Recap

Mason Bridges is on a train with some pals who ask him to indulge them in a game of poker. He obstinately refuses, and when pressed, recounts the story of how poker nearly ruined him. It was shortly after college and he was working as an office manager. A business associate named Klinker pressured him to play a game of poker that evening. Before the man left his office, he gave Mason ten thousand dollars that was to be for a transaction with another client. When Mason lost a thousand dollars within an hour, he quit the game. Unable to walk away from Klinker's smirk, Mason went back to the office and helped himself to four thousand dollars of Klinker's money, figuring he'd use his own savings as back-up. He lost it within an hour. When he got home to his apartment, wondering how he'd explain things to his wife, he discovered that the ledger is blank and that she had secretly used their savings for an investment that went south. Mason returned to his office and took more money from the company safe. He returned to the poker game, and finally the game came down to him and Klinker. The stakes went higher and higher, until Mason gambled everything he had personally, along with the client's money, thinking that he had a queen in the hole. Turned out, his card was a jack, which he misread. While he sweated it out, Klinker ended up putting everything that he had on the table for what turned out to be three tens. The end result was that Mason won due to his "bluff" and walked away with the pile of money. The only reason that he bluffed was because he thought that he actually had a queen, not a jack. He concludes the story by affirming that this is why he will never, ever play poker again. As he exits the train car, another colleague comes in and wants to wager a friendly drink. The man who has heard Mason's story replies, "Not on your life."
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