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I consider this one of those “topical” Perry Mason episodes. It deals with “juvenile delinquency,” a hot topic back then—Blackboard Jungle, Young Savages, Rebel Without a Cause, etc. Since it is topical, the episode comes across more “dated” than is generally true for Perry Mason. Also, and this may be just me, I detect a bit of homoeroticism. Even so, it’s still a credible entry in the oeuvre.
+ What you are calling homoeroticism might just be paternalism, if you are referring to the interaction between wise, kindly Mason and young Jimmy. Submitted by gracep, 9/3/2010.
In retrospect, at least as far as juvenile delinquency goes, Eisenhower’s “America” really wasn't all that bad. Submitted by billp, 31 October 2009.
The brief interlude between the judge and Burger regarding the latter's laryngitis seems odd; it plays no part in the plot other than to explain Burger’s hoarse voice. Why didn’t they just postpone filming that scene for a day or two? Submitted by Ed Zoerner, 2/1/2010.
When leaving James Morrow, Sr.’s apartment, Mason leaves his card and Drake leaves a pack of cigarettes, presumably as an act of kindness. Submitted by gracep, 9/3/2010.
Gerald Perreau-Saissine (a.k.a Richard Miles/Peter Miles) turns in a decent performance as Jimmy, but seems to have dropped out of film/tv about this time. This makes Perry’s final comments about his character somewhat ironic. Since Perreau-Saissine seemed a credible actor and photogenic, his disappearance is curious. Whatever the explanation, he seems to have had an interesting life. (See his obit here and a retrospective here).
Jimmy’s dad mentions the real thief of Mrs. Runyan’s car—a Barney Kellogg (who never appears). Later, Drake tails the invisible Kellogg in his search for Jimmy. And Mason brings the non-appearing but oft-mentioned Kellogg up at least once when conferring with his client Jimmy. Submitted by gracep 9/2/2010.
Ham Burger's hoarseness was probably related to William Talman's smoking, which would kill him within ten years. The tight shooting schedule, described in the Dan Jenkin's article linked in an earlier episode, prevented waiting for actor's health problems to clear up. Submitted by MikeM 7/27/2012