Patterns was the first major breakthrough of Rod Serling when the live television drama received critical acclaim as the January 12, 1955 installment of the anthology series Kraft Television Theatre. Directed by Fielder Cook, the intense big-business drama starred Richard Kiley as up-and-coming vice-president Fred Staples. Ruthless corporate boss Walter Ramsey attempts to edge out aging employee Andy Sloane to make room for newcomer Staples. Ramsey uses every opportunity to humiliate the fragile Sloane, while Staples sees Sloane as a professional who makes valuable contributions to the firm. Serling's celebrated script tore apart the dynamics of the business world and earned Serling his first of his six Emmys for dramatic writing. There was a rave review from Jack Gould of The New York Times who suggested it be repeated: Gould's request for a repeat was an unusual suggestion, since in that pre-videotape era, live shows were not repeated. Surprisingly, NBC took Gould's suggestion seriously and made plans for another production.
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