"Grave mistake! A crooked cemetery salesmen meets folks who have their own idea of what 'family plot' means."
-- DVD description for the episode
Ed Begley Jr. as Judd Campbell, the Salesman
Tim Curry as Pa Brackett / Ma Brackett / Winona Brackett
Kathe Weeks as Stella, the jilted waitress
Yvonne De Carlo as Mrs. Jones
To say that the seemingly quaint Bracket family are a bit odd would be something of an understatement. To say that they never ignore a bargain would be another one. And no-one learns this more than Judd Campbell. A conniving con-man who comes knocking at their door posing as a salesman. But little does Judd realize is that's he's not the first unsuspecting salesman to have come a calling. A fact that he discovers to his horror and the Bracket's revel in with malevolent joy.
Judd Campbell has sex for hours with a waitress named Stella. He wakes up early the next morning and checks the obituary section for “work”. Stella wakes up and the two argue, as Judd had conned her into believing he loved her and would rescue her from her crummy life; he admits it was a promise he only made the previous night, but “the warranty expired” this morning. He calls his gaming “salesmanship” and leaves her.
Judd — a traveling cemetery plot salesman —visits the home of Mrs Jones. Her husband passed on a few days ago, but Judd claims he made a promise to put a down payment on a final resting place. Mrs Jones wonders why her husband never mentioned it to her, but her attention is grabbed when Judd mentions the “benefits package“ which comes with the plot — all funeral expenses paid and $10000 cash. She begs him to accept cash now as if it was paid before her husband died; he accepts. As it turns out, this is the typical con Judd pulls — tricking people into giving him down payments in the promise he’ll eventually return with papers to the benefits package.
The next house Judd visits is the Cumphrie residence, where Ma Brackett answers the door and says nobody by the name Cumphrie lives there. Realizing he mixed the addresses up, Judd prepares to leave, but Ma invites him in after realizing he’s a salesman. He pitches his cemetery plot to Ma, who summons the grizzled Pa Brackett into the room to take part. Pa takes glee in having a salesman over, claiming nobody goes door-to-door anymore and most would rather shop “on the TV”. Judd coaxes them into a special benefit package worth $40000 for the price of $750 cash on the spot. The Bracketts fall for it, but Pa wants to see the land before buying — Judd agrees to take them to it tomorrow morning. Pa goes to get the money as Ma fixes Judd a cup of coffee. After Pa calls Ma out of the kitchen, Judd goes to the microwave to warm his cup — he opens it to find a bloody severed head. He screams and falls backwards, pulling back a curtain hiding another corpse with a vacuum nozzle through his jaw. A terrified Judd tries to escape but finds the door locked. Pa appears behind him and beats him unconscious with a baseball bat.
That night, Ma and Pa argue over what to do with the handcuffed Judd as he slowly starts to wake up. Pa wants to kill him quickly, but Ma wants “Winona” to have a look at him; Pa scoffs at that, claiming nobody will ever want her. They tell Judd the corpses are “just like you” — salesmen who had already succeeded in selling them a crummy microwave and vacuum cleaner. He then shows the color TV they bought from another — the saleman’s rotting corpse has been shoved inside. Pa angrily rants about salesmen suckering people out of their hard earned money and almost shoots Judd in the face; Ma stops him by insisting Winona should see him first.
Winona — the smelly, freakishly hideous Brackett daughter — comes down the stairs playing her harmonica. Judd tries to use his conman lines to convince her she’s beautiful and that he’s in love with her. While unconvinced at first, she eventually takes him up to her room to see if “the body never lies”. She pushes him onto the bed then takes off her dirty panties to show to him. He assures her he still loves her. She gets on top of him and Rips his pants off to see if he can get an erection. After much mental preperation, Judd somehow manages to get one. Winona wastes no time getting on top of him — the two have brief but very loud sex. Judd lies and claims that it was the best sex he‘s ever had, convincing her he loves him. She wants to marry and run away with Judd, whose interest is sparked once he learns she receives a $50000 dowry (money stolen from the dead salesmen) once married and its corresponsding paperwork is buried in the basement.
Pa and Ma agree to the marraige, with Pa presiding over it (Winona claims he’s a preacher). The “I Do’s” are said and Judd puts Ma’s wedding ring on Winona; Pa, however, refuses to unlock the handcuffs due to his distrust of salesmen. A furious Winona attacks her parents for trying to ruin her happiness. She beats them both to the ground, then frees Judd from his handcuffs. They go downstairs to get the dowry, where Judd immediately shoots Winona with Pa’s gun. He digs through the basement dirt and finds a box — but instead of the expected dowry, he finds a death certificate with his name on it. He’s surprised by Ma and Pa, who hold him at gunpoint and call the hole he just dug “a nice cemetary plot”. Winona suuddenly rises up, wondering how she’ll get the fake blood out of her dress — Ma suggests they use the washing machine sold to them by another salesman. The astonished salesman realizes the family has conned him. Pa calls his lies “salesmanship”, then shoots Judd dead.
Opening SegmentWell, kiddies. I'm afraid our designer hanger offer has expired. Would somebody please get Mr. De La Renta out of here? Next up on the home chopping network, it's time for the Crypt Keeper's fashion boo-tique. Today, we will feature my full line of Apres Vie death care products. We've got everything from face scream to mas-scare-a. Try some. It's the best thing you can do for...dem-ise. Or maybe I can interest you in tonight's special. It's a tasteless tale about a traveling cemetery plot salesmen who's about to make a grave mistake. I call it Death of Some Salesmen."
Closing Segment"Good old Judd. Just another satisfied ghost-imer. I guess it's true what they say - the family that slays together stays together. We come now to one of my favorite items, the amazing Crypt Keeper slash-o-matic. It's more than just a knife, it peels, it cuts, makes fabulous french fries. It slices, it dices, it -"
[Crypt Keeper shows his hand having severed his fingers with the knife]
- Eddie Murphy turned down the role of Ma, Pa and Winona Brackett.
- The title is based on the Arthur Miller play "Death of a Salesman" that opened on Broadway in 1949 and won the New York Drama Critics' Circle Best Play, the Pulitzer Prize for Drama and the Tony Award for Best Play.