Directed by: John Strysik
Written by: Harvey Jacobs and Michael McDowell
Based on a story by: Adam K. Jacobs
Madame Angler: Marie Windsor
Archie Fenton: Robert Rothman
Al: Ben Frank
Mac: Robert Sutton
Helen Tanner: Patrica Pelham
A landlady gets her tenant a new modern apartment in exchange for his garbage.
Archie Fenton walks into his new apartment carrying a box of books. He is followed by Al and Mac who are carrying some of his items. The apartment is great so Archie assumes there is a catch and Al and Mac do not deny it. Archie checks out the closets and then asks again what the catch is. Not only is his apartment only $200 a month, when most apartments in the area are about $1000 a month, his apartment is especially nice. Al and Mac assure him there is no catch.As Archie continues to look around, he asks again. When Mac asks him if he has already signed his lease, d Archie confrims that he had too since the deal was so good. Mac then drops his microwave on the floor, destroying it. Archie is angry because it was his mother's microwave but Mac is unfazed. As Archie goes to grab his typerwriter from Al, both men tell him the radiation from the microwave. Mac says that microwaves create vibrations in the atmosphere Archie denies this, maintaining all microwaves do is heat up water.
Al tells Archie that Mac will clean up the mess of the microwave. Archie is angry since the microwave was willed to him by his mother. Al turns around and there is a symbol of a red Chinese dragon on the back of his jacket. As Al leaves, Mac begins to ask Archie how his mom dies and details about the burial. Immediately, Madame Angler walks in and tells Mac that he asks too many questions.
Madame Angles begins talking to Archie. She asks him if he has much more to move in, but Archie tells her that all he has left is his clothes. This pleases Madame Angler since she feels that the rooms at the Saint George apartment complex do not like to be cramped. She introduces herself to Archie and insists on being called 'Madame."
Archie confronts Madame Angler about Mac destroying the microwave. Madame Angler tells him that Mac has weak wrists and he likely dropped the microwave on accident. Even so, Archie insists that management replace the microwave. Madame Angler tells him that is not possible for two reasons. First, the management does not have to replace it because they are charging him extremely reasonable rent. The second reason is that microwaves are not allowed at the apartment complex. Madame Angle repeats Mac's comment about how they create vibrations in the atmosphere.Somewhat placated, Archie asks Madame Angler if there is anything else that the St. George does not allow. Madame Angler tells him no, but he needs to know that if he takes care of the St. George, it will take care of him. Archie is confused about the comment, assuming she wants him to do maintainence work. Madame Angler tells him there are only two things that the management requires of him. First, he is to take his garbage out every day and place it in the proper receptacles, without bags. Second, he is not able to hang pictures using nails and instead must use tape. Her reasoning for this is that nail holes are unsightly. She compares them to wounds.
When Madame Angler asks Archie if there is anything else he needs to know, Archie asks her about turning on the lights. There are no switches in the apartment so he is not sure how to do this. Madame Angler shows him a pad on the wall and tells him to rub it with his hand whenever he needs light.
The rubbing makes the whole apartment begin to make an odd groaning sound. Madame Angler tells Archie this is simply the pipes in the house singing, as they sometimes do. She tells Archie that Al and Mac will be up with the rest of his things and that they are very happy to have him there.
Once Madame Angler is gone, Archie laughs to himself and walks over to his things. He takes out a picture and a hammer and nail. He talks to himself, smugly saying he can put up with everything due to the rent being so low. He also decides he can hang pictures with nails because what the management doesn't know will not hurt them.
As Archie starts to drive a nail in the wall, he hears an odd groaning sound from the walls. He tries a few more times to nail it and the groans keep coming. Archie is very confused. He finally drives his nail all the way in and hangs the picture of his mother up. Archies goes and sits on his couch and looks at the picture. Suddenly the picture falls off of the wall and breaks. The nail then is pushed out of the wall, and to Archie's surprise, a strange fluid begins pouring out of the wall.
Al and Mac are rubbing something on the wall with a q-tip. Impatiently, Archie asks what they are applying. When Al and Mac tell him it is peroxide, Archie is shocked. They tell him they are using peroxide because the wall has a wound.
Archie is extremely impatient with Al and Mac. He asks them how much longer they are going to be. This is his first day of work and he does not want to be late. Mac looks back at Archie and tells him that they are done. Archie then tries to give Al and Mac a tip, but Mac distastefully refuses. He tells Archie that he is not able to buy their forgiveness. Archie is confused and wonders why they would assume he needs forgiveness for hanging up a picture. Disgusted, Mac and Al leave.
Almost immediately, there is a knock at the door. Archie looks through the peephole and sees a lady that he does not know. When he lets her in, she introduces herself as Helen Tanner. Helen tells Archie that she had heard he hung a picture and tells him she thinks that took guts. Archie then notices that the hole is gone.
Archie is confused by how Helen is acting. Helen brought him a flower, but she tells him he will need to put it in water because she has no water in her apartment. Helen does not want to let Al and Mac into her apartment either
Helen turns to Archie and tells him he should leave the apartment that very day. Archie tells Helen that he cannot move since he signed a renewable two year lease and could not find another apartment for $200. He informs he is never going to move. Helen tells Archie that there are things that he does not know and that they were not included in the lease.Suddenly the entire room begins to shake and groan. Archie looks over at the control pad and it is glowing red. Archie assumes that the information left out of the lease was that the apartment building was built over a subway. Helen suddenly has to leave, but asks Archie to loan her some water and to get it quickly.
Archie goes to the sink to get Helen her water. The cup he gives her has the name "Helen" on it. Helen comments on this and Archie tells her that his mother was also named Helen. She then leaves, telling Archie to be careful.
When Helen is gone, Archie goes to turn the lights out. When he touches the pad, he hears another groan and is shocked.
Archie leaves his apartment, walking past Mac and Al. The two maintenance men appear to be trimming the carpet. They ponder whether or not it will be Archie's last day and guess it will not be.
Archie is returning home from work. As he is unlocking his door, Helen, who appears very sickly, walks up behind him. Turning to greet her, Archie is surprised by her appearance. He informs her that he tried to call her in case she wanted to go out for a drink, but Helen tells him that the phone company does not come to the St. George. He also tells her that he knocked on her door, but Helen then informs him that she never answers her door anymore.Archie is beginning to look uncomfortable with his conversation with Helen. As he keeps trying to unlock his door, to his surprise, Helen tells Archie that she head he had gotten a promotion. Archie wonders how she could know such a thing and Helen simply tells him that news travels fast in their apartment complex. When he also confirms that he had gotten a raise, Helen tells him that he should leave and find a new apartment since he can afford it. Helen then asks Archie how the rose she gave him was doing and he tells her he had to throw it out. Before he can explain, Madame Angler walks up behind them.
Madame Angler greets both Archie and Helen. Helen quickly tells Madame Angler that she had just borrowed a cup from Archie. Madame Angler does not believe her until Archie tells her that his mother was also named Helen. Madame Angler remarks on the coincidence and then tells Helen to go back to her room. Helen leaves.
Madame Angler than carries a plate of food over towards the disposal unit. She tells Archie that Helen's lease might not be renewed and that this should serve as a lesson to him. Archie wonders why she is throwing so much food into the disposal unit. He follows her into the disposal unit room. Madame Angler clangs and gong, which causes the chute to open. She pours the platter of food down the chute. Once the chute is closed, Madame Angler tells Archie that she is not throwing the food away, she is disposing of it. She says that her husband died eight months before and she could not get out of the habit of cooking for two.
As Madame Angler walks out of the disposal unit Archie follows her. He asks her if sound waves caused the chute to open. Madame Angler ignore his questions and tells Archie that he has not been providing enough garbage. When Archie tells her that he eats out a lot, she invites him over for dinner since she always makes too much food. She tells him to show up at 7:30 across the hall and they will celebrate his promotion.
Archie is sleeping on his sofa bed when he hears a loud knocking noise. Looking up he also sees his control pad glowing. When the knocking will not stop, Archie gets out of bed. He hears a struggle in Helen's room. Mac is telling Helen her lease is not being renewed and Helen screams.
Archie goes to try and find out what happened. Outside his door, Al is dragging what looks like a body bag into the disposal room. Mac appears immediately in front of Archie and tells him to go back to his apartment. When Archie tries to explain he heard a noise, Mac tells him it was just a dream.
Archie is at Madame Angler's apartment for dinner. He is yawning. Madame Angler mentions that her husband used to yawn all day and very seldomly got good rest.
When Madame Angler gets up to get some water, Archie mentions the noise that woke him up the previous night. Madame Angler gets their water without needing to turn the fountain on. He tells Madame Angler that it sounded like there was a struggle in Helen's room. Madame Angler tells Archie it was simply that Helen's husband came back, the two made up and they left. Archie does not appear to believe her story.
Madame Angler toasts Archie and they both drink. Archie is surprised when Madame Angler tells him that they are drinking sake because Archie saw her fill them up at the sink. Madame Angler dismisses this. In addition, Madame Angler has made what appears to be a full Thanksgiving style dinner with all of the trimmings. She tells him that her food makes a lot better garbage as opposed to Helen's meals which were brown rice and organic yogurt, which make poor waste.
Madame angler hands Archie a matchbook with a dragon on it. She asks him to light the candles. When Archie strikes a match, the candles light themselves.When dinner is over with, Madame Angler takes Archie to help dispose of the food. Archie asks her why she disposes of so much food when it should be able to keep. She informs him that she cannot stand leftovers and asks him to put all the food down the chute.
AfTter Madame Angler leaves, Archie moves to dispose of the food. He turns around when he notices that something is happening at Helen's door. Mac and Al are very delicately trying to remove her name plate. Archie approaches them and mentions how it seemed like the two of then were very upset with Helen the previous night. Both men deny being in the hallway. When Archie asks where Helen is, Al tells him to go and drop the turkey down the disposal chute.
Archie moves to dispose of the food, but stops before entering the disposal room. To Mac and Al's surprise, Archie takes the food in to his own apartment. He sets the food on the counter and tries to eat a turkey leg.
Suddenly, Archie's apartment begins to behave oddly. The lights go out and the control pad glows. The apartment complex begins to growl. The stove begins to smoke and the heater sparks. The ceiling fan falls.
Madame Angler accompanied by Mac and Al, enters the room. Angrily she tells Archie that he was supposed to go straight to the disposal unit. Archie protests that it does not make sense to throw away so much food. Madame Angler tells him that he has not been providing and orders him to dump the food down the chute. After Archie does this, Madame Angler tells him she expects him to dispose of his share of organic garbage from then on. She also tells him to show more respect for the building.
Archie puts a t-shirt over the control pad in his apartment. He is very angry and spitefully says that he will definitely give Madame Angler some organic garbage. He throws a bunch of broken dishes and chemicals into a trash bag.
Archie takes the bag and goes to the disposal unit. He bangs on the gong and the chute opens. Archie shoves the bag down the chute.
The house begins to angrily shake. Madame Angler, Mac and Al enter the hallways in shock. Archie sarcastically tells them he is providing his share. Madame Angler tells him he is a fool since he had a lease for life in the best building in town. Archie sarcastically tells her that is only true until the building eats him.
Suddenly, the house stops shaking and belches. They confirm that something is dead.Madame Angler turns to Archie and tells him the building would have never eaten him. She says it only ate Helen because she did not belong. She shows him a dragon tattoo on his arm that he did not know was there. The chute reopens, a forked reptilian tongue comes out and pulls Archie into it.
Madame Angler remarks how tenants have no respect for the building. Al makes a comment on how Archie was one that was hard to stomach. To his confusion Madame Angler and Mac start laughing. Finally Al realizes what he said and he laughs too. The house joins in.