Tales from the Darkside

Season 3 Episode 19

The Social Climber

Aired Tuesday 8:00 PM Mar 08, 1987 on

Episode Fan Reviews (2)

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  • A magic shoemaker makes shoes for the rich which he has made a living on, yet does not want his shoes being worn by his apprentice.

    I think anybody who watches this and assumes it's about a selfish apprentice is missing the point here. This episode was really about tough love and hypocrisy. This is evident from the very beginning. A young hardworking apprentice dreams of better things to come but in every instant his old and rather nasty boss keeps bringing him down making it clear that his dreams will never come to: "stop dreaming and get back to work" the old mean geezer says.

    Let's get to the hypocrisy part which is quite obvious if you haven't noticed. First the man has made a living of the rich making shoes!!!! Hello if the old man really wanted to instill hard work ethic values into the apprentice why would he accept this job of making this magic shoes for the rich and others? Later on in the episode the shoemaker reveals his disgust for the rich because he believes the rich don't work hard for what they got -yes he is stereotypical of a poor man jealous of successful people (yet he hypocritically accepts their money and anybody's money for these special shoes that can bring someone's dream come true). Jesus if that isn't hypocrisy I don't know what is.

    The previous review stated it didn't make any sense that the apprentice would keep up showing for work knowing that the shoes were magical but this is pretty simple to figure out: The apprentice gets hard work but of course hasn't given up his dream of making in the world. I mean anybody who has really "made it" in the world has worked crappy jobs and if any of them accepted the crap the old shoemaker said that their dreams were nonsense, then none of them would have made it. It's simple people work hard but in their spare time (which the apprentice) he spend dreaming of making which he would have done had he actually gotten encouragement and love for the shoemaker. The shoemaker of course being an old miser continues to dash the apprentice's dream which of course only prompt the apprentice to use the magic shoes more and more until it kills them. You know this being "Tales from the Darkside" this wouldn't have a happy ending.

    However, as I said it's a good episode of why tough love doesn't work and that people who don't encourage others to live their dream are really only hurting them and pushing them to do things they would not do knowing that their "dream" is over.
  • A shoemaker's apprentice realizes his boss makes magic shoes. By wearing the shoes, the apprentice is transported into the lives of the wealthy people for whom the shoes were made. However, his greed leads him to wear the shoes one too many times.

    A man works as a shoemaker's apprentice, but dreams of one day striking it rich and living a life of luxury. He has a fiancee, but the fact that she is a waitress gives him second thoughts. Can he really marry someone who gets excited about a $2 tip? Anthony, the shoemaker, is highly sought out by the rich and famous. He warns his apprentice that his selfishness could cost him a happy life with his girlfriend. The apprentice discovers a case in the storeroom one night that contains some special pairs of shoes. Trying a pair on, the apprentice suddenly finds himself clad in a tuxedo. Realizing he has assumed the life of the wealthy man the shoes were made for, he goes to a party for the rich and famous at the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel. The next night he puts on another pair of shoes and ends up being a high roller at a casino. Anthony finds out he has been wearing the shoes and warns him that he does not belong in them, as each pair of shoes is intended only for the "right person." The apprentice assures Anthony that he will not do it again, but while Anthony is busy, he sneaks into the storeroom to put on a pair of shoes that were made for Donald Coventry, the richest man in Manhattan. At the same time, a woman arrives at the shop to pick up Coventry's shoes. She informs Anthony that Coventry died and will be buried tomorrow. Just then, the sounds of glass crashing and the apprentice screaming are heard from the storeroom. Anthony discovers his lifeless body, with a startled look on his face and Coventry's shoes on his feet. A strong episode, even though the ending is somewhat predictable. The materialistic and selfish apprentice learns his lesson the hard way. One problem I had with the plot is the fact that the apprentice continues to return to work and live his real life by day while only wearing the shoes at night. He is obsessed with getting rich, yet once he figures out the shoes can give him what he wants, he returns them to the shop and goes back to work the next day. It doesn't make much sense. Other than that bit of nitpicking, though, it is a very entertaining installment.