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#218: The Case of the
Original Airdate: 11/05/64
From The Perry Mason TV Show Book (Revised)
This is another of the handful of episodes in which Perry doesn’t appear. Mike Connors, who went on to star in his own successful series, Mannix, plays Joe Kelly, a lawyer friend of Paul Drake.
Perry is in Europe on business. Paul and Joe Kelly are vacationing in Tesoro, a small town run by Bonnie Mae Wilmot, a woman known by the locals as the duchess. Bill Jaris, who was married to the duchess’s late daughter, and his brother run a bowling alley that the duchess wants closed. An outbreak of dysentery linked to the bowling alley results in an injunction to close the place, to the delight of the duchess.
Paul is a friend of Bill’s, so he and Joe help get the injunction quashed for the time being. But Bill is soon in more trouble: Dr. Max Taylor, a man working with the duchess to close down Bill and his brother, is murdered. Bill is the number one suspect. Now Joe must work to free Bill.
It was his work in this episode that led the Mason series producers to consider Mike Connors as a replacement for Raymond Burr after he threatened not to re-sign his contract.
Starring Raymond Burr
with special guest star Michael Connors
in The Case of THE BULLIED BOWLER
Based upon characters created by Erle Stanley Gardner
Barbara Hale, William Hopper, William Talman, Ray Collins
Directed by Jesse Hibbs
Written by Samuel Newman
Arthur Marks \ Art Seid | Producers
Gail Patrick Jackson | Executive Producer
Jackson Gillis | Associate Producer
Samuel Newman | Story Consultant
Raymond Burr as Perry Mason
Barbara Hale as Della Street
William Hopper as Paul Drake
William Talman as Hamilton Burger
Ray Collins as Lt. Tragg
Michael Connors as Joe Kelly
Anne Seymour as Bonnie Mae Wilmet (The Duchess)
Milton Selzer as Dr. Max Taylor
Robert Harland as Bill Jaris
Paul Lukather as Alan Jaris
Jeff Donnell as Rose Carol
Charles Gray as Jack Baker
Patricia Morrow as Marla Carol
Maurice Manson as Orson Stillman Mayor
Patricia George as Linda Terry
John Gallaudet as Judge
William Tannen as Police Sergeant
Allan Hunt as Fourth Boy
Elizabeth Harrower as Sadie Noymann
Lonie Blackman as Marge
Gilman Rankin as Man in Hospital
Director of Photography … John M. Nickolaus, Jr.
Art Direction … Lewis Creber
Assistant Director … Robert G. Stone
Film Editor … Richard H. Cahoon, A.C.E
Casting … Harvey Clermont
Makeup … Irving Pringle
Hair Stylist … Annabell
Wardrobe Supervision … Ed McDermott, Evelyn Carruth
Set Decoration … Carl Biddiscombe
Properties … Ray Thompson
Production Sound Mixer … Herman Lewis
Script Supervision … George A. Rutter
Theme Composed by … Fred Steiner
Automobiles Supplied by … Ford Motor Company
Produced by the CBS Television Network in association with Paisano Productions
N.B.: A previous version of these credits were constructed from sources in addition to actual episode. Available prints were missing most of the credits, including the cast. See here for the story. (The opening credits and parts of the trailing credits were extant, however.) With the DVD release of Season 8 Volume 1, the ending credits are once again intact. The above credits have been revised accordingly.
The babysat baby in this episode is Alan Rice. Submitted by Alan Rice, 9/11/2001. Picture here.
Phone Numbers: Joe Kelly wants to make a call from Paul’s car phone. Paul picks up the phone and dials the operator. Joe gives him the number: 271-2199. Paul repeats the number into the phone then exclaims “That’s Perry’s number!” Submitted by daveb, 11/23/2010.
+ Apparently Perry's number has changed over the years. It used to be MAdison 5-1190. alan_sings 12/6/2012.
Uncredited Actors / Sightings: The health inspector interviewing a bedridden man in the hospital is none other than Don Anderson. Next he interviews a woman in her hospital bed and then another man sick in bed at home—a man who happens to be Distinguished Gentleman #1! Submitted by gracenote, 4/8/2011.
+ In the courtroom gallery, Quiet Old Man #1 has ensconced himself up front for a good view of the proceedings. Guarding the door is a sometimes blurry but always solemn Robert Wegner. On the prosecutor’s side sits a rather indistinct but keenly interested Pencil Mustache Man, while tucked away in the back of the defense side is the Little Old Lady in a Hat. And luckily, Distinguished Gentleman #1 got over his amebic dysentery in time to observe the hearing. Submitted by gracenote, 4/9/2011.
Although credited in the the available syndication print, Ray Collins (Lt. Tragg) does not appear, again because of his illness. And of course, as the Summary indicates, neither does Raymond Burr (Perry Mason). Submitted by gracenote, 4/8/2011.
Location: The porch of a house with the address of 1432 serves double duty. It's used for a scene here as well as a scene in “TCOT Two-Faced Turn-A-bout.” I don't know what street this was but the 1400 block would be just a few blocks north of the studio in Hollywood so it wasn’t far. Submitted by Eric Cooper, 28 April 2011.
Location: Speaking of double duty with locations, here is another one. The house the rich old lady lives in is the same house as the two sisters in “TCOT Nebulous Nephew.” Maybe it’s a timeshare. The window patterns are different but check out the two very unique and unusual hanging lanterns by the front door. Also on the nighttime scenes the porch light is in exactly the same place. The house is probably in Hancock Park which is again close to the studio. Submitted by Eric Cooper 28 April 2011.
+ The porch also appears 17 minutes into “TCOT Bluffing Blast.” Submitted by Eric Cooper, 9 June 11.
Location: I found the house! It’s at 357 Lorraine Blvd in the Hancock Park section of Los Angeles. It was originally built in 1898 for Issac Newton Van Nuys who developed much of the San Fernando Valley. The house is about 12,000 sq ft and looks exactly the same. Even has the same unique porch light after 50 years. Submitted by Eric Cooper, 6 June 2011. Pictures here.
Samuel Newman did a uniquely poor job of story and dialogue in this episode. From the stilted "legalese" used by Kelly (Mike Connor) prior to trial and in the courtroom, to the childish plotting and characters and odd defendant in-court outbursts, it was all very poorly done. cgraul 5 March 12
The ending credits are now included in the DVD release of Season 8 Volume 1. Differences between the reconstructed cast and the cast shown on the video include the title "The Duchess" following Bonnie Mae Wilmet's name, the title "Mayor" appended to Orson Stillman's name, order of billing for Patricia Morrow, name of Allan Hunt's character (Fourth Boy) and his billing order, and the addition of Gilman Rankin as "Man in Hospital". As anticipated, Don Anderson and Robert Wegner are uncredited. The technical crew is now included. Co-incidentally, the "crew" credits are identical to those of the preceding episode, which makes us hope that the DVD editors didn't just take a shortcut, but that the same identical crew were properly credited for this episode as well. Kudos to all the contributing scholars whose reconstructed cast has served so admirably for all these years. Your work was remarkably accurate given the obstacles you faced. Bravo! alan_sings 6 December 2012.