The W.V. Whipple Manufacturing Co. introduces a new automated manufacturing machine that will eliminate 61,000 jobs and the company's president, Wallace V. Whipple, is quite proud of his achievement. Not everyone agrees with him, especially the loyal and longstanding employees who will be out of work. Foreman Vic Dickerson has plans for the machine - plans that land him in the hospital. When the machine is fully operational, it's Wallace V. Whipple who learns just what it is he has created. Written by
At the moment Chief Engineer Hanley turns off the projector, the lamps in the background come on at precisely the same moment. Mr. Whipple is standing in the middle of the room. No one else was in the room to turn the lights on. See more »
These are the players, with or without a scorecard: in one corner, a machine; in the other, one Wallace V. Whipple, man. And the game? It happens to be the historical battle between flesh and steel, between the brain of man and the product of man's brain. We don't make book on this one, and predict no winner, but we can tell you that, for this particular contest, there is standing room only - in the Twilight Zone.
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Richard Deacon stars in this marvelously clever Twilight Zone episode of an industrialist who has decided that he's going to automate his entire plant. Just think of it, no workers to deal with, no union complaints, presumably the technicians to keep the machines running are all part of management now. To completely eliminate labor, the goal of every tycoon of business since the Industrial Revolution.
Watching this I was thinking that if some poor Luddite rioters from the post Napoleonic war era Great Britain could have seen this episode it would have confirmed all the worst fears they had.
The clash with Deacon and a plant foreman Ted DeCorsia is one for the books. Has some profound things to say about man's need to feel he's doing useful work in this world. At least most of us feel that way, there are some parasites among the human species to be sure.
In the end poor Deacon finds he too is expendable. Then he became a Luddite.
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