A gangster on the lam (Bobby Darin) needs the services of a seasoned exporter (Jack Albertson) to get him out of the country in the Night Gallery story “Dead Weight,” reviewed here.
“Dead Weight” **
Teleplay by Jack Laird • Story “Out of the Country” by Jeffry Scott
Directed by Timothy Galfas
Jack Albertson as Bullivant
Bobby Darin as Landau
James Metropole as the Delivery Boy
A criminal named Landau (Bobby Darin), recently involved in a fatal bank heist , needs to escape the law, and therefor the country, in the worst way. He has come to a Mr. Bullivant (Jack Albertson, quite good in his usual Jack Albertson way), an exporter of goods who has experience in spriting away gangsters on the run from the authorities.
Bullivant reassures Landau that he has nothing to worry about. “Forty-seven years in the business and not one customer complaint,” he says. Bullivant suggests an escape to Argentina. “Rio’s been so overdone lately,” he adds.
When Landau supplies some details of his crime, we discover that a mother and her child were gunned down in the battle, innocent bystanders who ended up as collateral damage in Landau’s robbery, though Landau does feel bad about the kid.
Bullivant says his fee is $15,000 and Landau, without other options and time against him, pays it. Eager to leave, Landau agrees first to a glass of sherry with Bullivant, the exporter’s typical sealing of such a deal. Landau drinks up and instantly ends up face down—dead.
The next scene has a delivery boy picking up a large, heavy crate from Bullivant, bound for Argentina. The label on it says “Bullivan’t Mystery Mixture,” his own special brand of dog food.
Again, a Jack Laird script of a feeble comic idea, this time played out a bit longer than usual (seven minutes). It has a nice performance from Jack Albertson, but the “twist” at the end that this septuagenarian poisons these hoodlums then supposedly grinds them up and ships them to locales such as Argentina for dog food seems preposterous and not especially amusing.