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#271: The Case of the
Original Airdate: 05/22/66
From The Perry Mason TV Show Book
In this final episode of the Mason series, the storyline is secondary. This is how a close-knit cast and crew say goodbye to their fans…
Starring Raymond Burr
in The Case of The Final Fade-Out
Based upon characters created by Erle Stanley Gardner
Barbara Hale, William Hopper, William Talman
Directed by Jesse Hibbs
Written by Ernest Frankel & Orville H. Hampton
Arthur Marks \ Art Seid | Producers
Gail Patrick Jackson | Executive Producer
Ernest Frankel | Story Consultant
Orville H. Hampton | Associate Story Consultant
Raymond Burr as Perry Mason
Barbara Hale as Della Street
William Hopper as Paul Drake
William Talman as Hamilton Burger
Richard Anderson as Lt. Steve Drumm
Music | Richard Shores
James Stacy as Barry Conrad
Estelle Winwood as Winifred Glover
Jackie Coogan as Pete Desmond
Denver Pyle as Jackson Sidemark
Dick Clark as Leif Early
Gerald Mohr as Andy Rubin
Marlyn Mason as Erna Landry
Kenneth MacDonald as Judge One
William Tannen as Studio Guard
Margaret Shinn as Starlet #1
Linda Burton as Starlet #2
Maureen Crow as Adlib
Louis Elias as Stunt Man No. 1
Saul Gorss as Stunt Man No. 2
Lee Miller as Sgt. Brice
Director of Photography … John M. Nickolaus, Jr.
Art Direction … Lewis Creber
Assistant Director … Gordon A. Webb
Film Editor … Richard H. Cahoon, A.C.E.
Casting … Harvey Clermont
Makeup … Irving Pringle
Hair Styling … Annabell
Wardrobe Supervision … Bob Wolfe, Evelyn Carruth
Set Decoration … Carl Biddiscombe
Properties … Ray Thompson
Production Sound Mixer … Herman Lewis
Script Supervision … Marshall Schlom
Theme Composed by … Fred Steiner
Automobiles supplied by … Ford Motor Company
Produced by the CBS Television Network in Association with Paisano Productions
Uncredited Actors: Erle Stanley Gardner appears uncredited as the second judge in this episode. He was remembered in this role in an Associated Press wire-photo distributed with his obituary. Submitted by Thom Smith, N8DXR, 8/22/2004.
Denver Pyle was both a defendant and a victim in this episode. See the Statistics page for more info about defendants, murderers and victims. Submitted by daveb, date unknown.
Four members of the cast appear in the last episode, just as they had appeared in the first episode. Barbara Hale, Raymond Burr, William Hopper, and Lee Miller. Although Miller was not billed in the first episode, TCOT Restless Redhead, he appeared on screen several times, both as a policeman and as a spectator at the trial. Submitted by PaulDrake 33, 4 October 2009.
+ What about William Talman? Submitted by Wiseguy70005, 6/29/12.
+ Indeed! Saving his best histrionics for last, Hamilton Burger blows a gasket in this episode, shouting at a witness and calling Perry a "shyster." His last act is to treat the gang to dinner at Clay's Grill, where presumably he ordered crow. Submitted by francis, 5/10/14.
When Denver Pyle is placed under arrest for murder he is shown being driven away in a police car, yet he is not in handcuffs as can be seen by the fact he is resting his arm on the car window ledge. Submitted by Craig, 2/3/2010.
Sightings: “Miss Carmody” is seated in two places in the gallery at once! She is clearly visible on the left end of the first row on the prosecution side during a wide view of the prosecution table. Moments later, she is on the defense side behind Leif Early during a closeup. Submitted by alan_sings, 3 Oct 2010.
+ She’s not the only favorite to return for the last episode. Quiet Old Man #1 appears in the courtroom gallery, between Burger and Mason as they face off early in the first evidentiary hearing. In the second hearing, he returns along with Pencil Mustache Man. Read more about these and other favorite frequent faces on the “Who Is That?” page. Submitted by gracenote, 6/17/2011.
Barbara Hale (Della) as the blond? In the bar scene, there is blond (obvious wig) female and sunglasses with a silly southern accent who makes a comment and then turns and kisses the man next to her. She looks like Barbara Hale with a wig on. I watched the DVD several times and pretty sure..submitted by Perry Baby 2/15/17
The young brunette occasionally in the last few seasons make an appearance in the last court gallery. Submitted by Perry Baby 2/8/14
Uncredited Actors: In what could sum up his career on the Mason series, Don Anderson appears as an extra/stuntman in a police uniform participating in the gun battle in which Barry is killed. Submitted by FredK, 28 Nov 2010.
Perhaps fittingly, the first trial judge is played by Kenneth MacDonald who has the distinction of being the only actor, outside the main cast, to appear with billing in all nine seasons of the Mason series. In addition, he was the judge in the second series episode, TCOT Sleepwalker's Niece. While my favorite judge actor S. John Launer eked out a narrow 33 to 32 victory in the Judge Episode count, Mr. Launer did not appear until the second season, TCOT Curious Bride (#44).
It is pretty obvious that most of the extras in courtroom gallery and in the bar scene where various uncredited actors delivered lines were from the cast. One set up in the bar references not doing a series opposite of Bonanza...the time slot Perry Mason had. Submitted by Perry Baby 2/8/14
+James Stacy makes his second appearance (and of course his last) on Perry playing one of the vilest, most despicable, characters ever. Maybe Mr. Stacy was not acting, because several years later James Stacy was sent to a state prison in California for 6 years after being convicted of molesting an 11 year old girl. Submitted by PaulDrake 33. 4 March 2014.
License plate hanging in prop room: CA CJF 925...MikeM. 7/7/2016
Pinky Rings: Paul Drake, Ham Burger, Jackson Sidemark, Andy Rubin...Perry none?...MikeM. 7/7/2016
Perhaps Barbara Hale and Ernest Frankel are watching this episode tonight on MeTV. Thanks to all the wonderful people who gave us this classy series which has stood the test of time....MikeM. 7/7/2016
The deep-voiced man referred to as Phil, the director, is not credited. Could he in fact be one of the real directors on the series? Submitted by gracenote, 6/17/2011.
I finally finished watching the entire series from DVD's I had purchased over the years. My addiction to Perry Mason started when Ted Turner's new TBS Superstation starting broadcasting Perry Mason every day for years and thanks to the VCR I could record them for delayed viewing. The core casting was perfect although I never felt the characters that replaced Tragg had the humor that Ray Collins brought to the role. The series had lost some of its quickness due to Raymond Burr's weight and health issues in season 7 and 8 although season 9 was better than the previous two seasons. As Perry says in the last scene, you start at the beginning so I will start again watching them regularly starting with Season 1. Submitted by Perry Baby 2/8/14
After the judge dismisses the charges against Jackson Sidemark, Hamilton Burger tells Mr. Sidemark, "You're free for the moment, but I'm not through with you". Surely Hamilton must know that once the preliminary hearing starts, witnesses are sworn, evidence introduced, and testimony given, jeopardy has been attached. Once the charges are dismissed against Mr. Sidemark, the rule of double jeopardy applies and he can no longer be made to answer for the murder of Barry Conrad. Submitted by PaulDrake 33. 4 March 2014.
+Jeopardy does not attach until a jury is impaneled. Submitted by D. Tlougan, 5/1/15.
+Actually, you are both a bit off. There is no requirement of a jury; bench trials are frequently held. And the jeopardy is not dependent upon impaneling of a jury; in a bench trial it attaches upon swearing in the first witness. It can also be upon a change of plea entered and accepted by the court.
+Preliminary hearings are have no risk of conviction, as they only determine that a crime has been committed and the defendant should be bound over (probable cause) (which is not determined "beyond a reasonable doubt." cgraul 4.13.17
Pete Desmond (Jackie Coogan), tells Paul Drake that the reason he committed perjury was to help his friend Jackson Sidemark. Mr. Desmond tells Paul that he saw this ploy in a movie. The movie to which Mr. Desmond is referring is the wonderful 1957 movie "Witness For The Prosecution". Submitted by PaulDrake 33. 4 March 2014.
The name of the fictional producer in this episode, Jackson Sidemark, pays tribute to the real-life producers of Perry Mason, Gail Patrick Jackson, the executive producer, and Art Seid and Arthur Marks, the producers. Submitted by DyNama, 6/13/2014.
The final episode of Perry concerned evil doings around a television show. This was probably designed to give all the behind-the-scenes workers a chance to come in front of the cameras and introduce themselves and say a little about their jobs. Submitted by PaulDrake 33. 4 March 2014.
+Coincidentally on May 22, 1966, "In LA, the 18th Annual Emmy Awards are presented to 'The Fugitive [Outstanding Drama],' 'The Dick Van Dyke Show [Outstanding Comedy],' DVD/Leading Actor-Comedy & Mary Tyler Moore/Leading Actress-Comedy," wikipedia observes [takemeback.to 5.22.66 page]. Mike Bedard 3.19.15: MeTV AM airing of Episode 271.
FF has 2 Perry Rarities: Multiple Murders & One the viewers actually witness. Mike Bedard 3.19.15
The final line of the final show belongs to Perry. "Now it seems to me the place to start is at the beginning". What a wonderful boss and co-worker Raymond Burr must have been, considering how many people did the whole 9 years. Submitted by PaulDrake 33. 4 March 2014.
+AMEN! The series came Full Circle! Mike Bedard 2.27.15.
The show never had a Christmas episode. Submitted by Perry Baby 10/17/16.
I've just finished watching every episode on DVD and have read every page here right after watching each episode. A couple of minor things have bugged me. The same interior has been used many times for a wealthy person's house. The same staircase, lobby and study, with only minor changes. Never seen that mentioned in these pages. Also none of the exteriors used for Perry's office could be possible as Perry's office has a balcony and none of the buildings shown has balconies. Submitted by Larry Baby 10/23/17.
+ Excellent observation, Larry. Don't forget this show was associated with the low-budget Columbia Pictures system, so those interiors also likely appeared in the works of The Three Stooges, as well as the Boston Blackie series. JohnK, 23 October 2017.