The Twilight Zone (1959–1964)
8.1/10
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22 user 4 critic

What You Need 

A small time crook plans to exploit an old street peddler who has the uncanny knack of selling people exactly what they will shortly need.

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Writers:

(teleplay by), (based on the short story by) (as Lewis Padgett) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Episode complete credited cast:
...
...
Read Morgan ...
Lefty
...
Girl in Bar (as Arline Sax)
William Edmonson ...
Doris Karnes ...
Woman
Fred Kruger ...
Man on Street
Norman Sturgis ...
Hotel Clerk
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Storyline

An old man comes to the same bar every night to peddle his wares. He tells the clients what it is they need before they realize they need it. Moments after telling a washed up major league pitcher he needs a ticket to Scranton, Pennsylvania he gets a phone call offering him a job there. When the old man tells him he needs a pair of scissors, Fred Renard scoff at him but and when his scarf is caught in an elevator door, he's glad the old man was right. Renard, who has wasted most of his 36 years on Earth, decides to capitalize on the old man's gift. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

scissors | scarf | peddler | bar | elevator | See All (22) »


Certificate:

TV-PG
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Details

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Language:

Release Date:

25 December 1959 (USA)  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

"What You Need" inspired the song of the same name by British post-punk band The Fall from their acclaimed 1985 album 'This Nation's Saving Grace'. See more »

Goofs

Since Lefty's scarf was not knotted around his neck, all he had to do was turn his body to twist it off. There was no need to use the scissors. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Bartender: You ready for another?
Fred Renard: I'm fine.
Bartender: You've been fine for an hour. We sell booze here, mister. We don't just rent space.
Fred Renard: Is that a fact?
Bartender: That's a fact, buddy.
Fred Renard: How would you like to take a flying jump at the moon?
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Connections

Referenced in Twilight Zone: The Movie (1983) See more »

Soundtracks

Blues
(uncredited)
Written by Stan Tracey
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User Reviews

 
It's Those Shoes
26 September 2008 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

I have always enjoyed this episode. People over analyze it. The "bad guy" is just that. There are bad people and given a situation where they can take, will do so. This is not a religious allegory. This is about a situation where we must suspend our disbelief (as we often do in The Twilight Zone) and accept the gifts the man has. Why do people automatically believe that a writer needs to put a religious spin on it. If you want to put a spin on it, it is more fairy tale (The Goose that Laid the Golden Egg and The Fisherman's Wife). These people are dissatisfied with what they have and try to destroy the source of their gifts. It is really about Kismet, not theology.

This episode works well because it has a magical quality and some great characters. We create our destinies, and the supernatural aside, the man went too far.


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