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<< Watery Witness | Episodes | Blushing Pearls >>

#72: The Case of the
Garrulous Gambler
Original Airdate: 10/17/59

Summary Edit

From The Perry Mason TV Show Book
Larry Benton, a born troublemaker, is in a real jam this time. When he knocks a man cold arguing over a poker hand, his “friends” inform him the guy is dead. Larry doesn’t realize the thugs are lying. They, in turn, put the finger on him for big bucks in hush money. Broke as usual, Larry forges his brother’s check for $5000. Big man Johnny Clay tries to bleed Larry for another twenty Gs but gets himself iced instead.

When Larry’s brother Steve tries to cover up Larry’s involvement, he ends up with a murder charge. Steve gets smart and hires Perry, whose first task is to track down Mike Granger, the man Larry supposedly killed.

Correction: Larry didn't "knock a man cold". The man (Mike Grainger) was shot while struggling over a gun with Larry. Submitted by Kilo 7/10/2017.

Credits Edit

Random actor from episode. Click for page of all available.


Starring Raymond Burr
Based upon characters created by Erle Stanley Gardner
Barbara Hale as Della Street
William Hopper as Paul Drake
William Talman as Hamilton Burger
Ray Collins as Lt. Tragg


Directed by Walter Grauman
Written by Gene Wang
Herbert Hirschman | Producer
Gail Patrick Jackson | Executive Producer
Produced by The CBS Television Network in association with Paisano Productions
Seeleg Lester | Associate Producer, Story Consultant
Arthur Marks | Associate Producer

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


Dick Foran as Steve Benton
Paula Raymond as Doris Shackley
Steve Brodie as Ben Wallace
Wynn Pearce as Larry Benton
Tony Travis as Johnny Clay
Victor Sen Yung as Mickey Fong
Anne Barton as Nora Bradley
Gordon Wynn as Mike Granger
Morris Ankrum as Judge
Law Green as Doctor Victor
Irving Steinberg as Sergeant
Robert Nash as Earnshaw

Uncredited Actors
George E. Stone as Court Clerk (posted by gracep, 9/9/2010)
Arthur Tovey as Courtroom Spectator (posted by gracenote, 8/15/2011)


Art Seid, A.C.E. | Assistant to the Producer
Production Supervisor … Dewey Starkey
Director of Photography … Frank Redman, A.S.C.
Art Direction … Lewis Creber
Film Editor … Richard H. Cahoon, A.C.E.
Assistant Director … Robert G. Stone
Casting … Harvey Clermont
Makeup … Irving Pringle
Hair Stylist … Annabell, S.C.H.
Wardrobe Supervision … William Zacha, Evelyn Carruth
Set Decoration … Charles Q. Vassar
Sound Effects Editor … Gene Eliot, M.P.S.E.
Music Editor … Gene Feldman
Properties … Ray Thompson
Production Sound Mixer … Herman Lewis
Script Supervision … Robert Gary

Filmed in Hollywood by TCF Television Productions, Inc.
A CBS Television Network Production

Trivia Edit

In this episode we are treated to a shot from behind Perry’s office desk over Perry’s right shoulder. Submitted by PaulDrake33, 9/9/2008.

Goof: Earlier in the episode, Steve Benton questions his brother Larry about checks made out to Ben Wallace. During the judicial hearing, however, Burger questions Doris Shackley about the same checks, which are made out to “cash.” Submitted by gracep, 9/10/2010.

Sightings: The ubiquitous Distinguished Gentleman #1 makes another appearance in the courtroom gallery, on the prosecutor’s side. He is visible during a long shot from the perspective of the judge’s bench. Submitted by gracep, 9/10/2010
+ “Miss Carmody” can be seen filing out of the gallery at the end of the episode while the two Benton brothers are shaking hands. Submitted by alan_sings, 3 Oct 2010.
+ The Thin Man appears as a police worker digging on the beach during the search for Mike Granger’s body. Submitted by alan_sings, 9 Oct 2010.
+ He’s almost unrecognizable in his spiffy new glasses, but surely that’s Quiet Old Man #2 sitting in the corner behind Mason’s table in court. (He moves a bit from session to session.) Submitted by gracenote, 8/15/2011.

Location: Opening scene is Malibu Road just north of the Colony. Submitted by Eric Cooper, 28 January 2011.

This episode was filmed in 1959 on 7/30, 7/31, and 8/3-8/7 (for 7 days). Confusing but accurate is that it filmed under the title “The Case of the Badgered Brother,” a title which was recycled for a later episode. The address of the Malibu house was 24246 Malibu Road. Script is marked episode #83. Submitted by DRKIMBLE, 12 February 2011.

In real life, 19 years separated the actors playing the Benton brothers. Before I looked it up, I would have guessed the age difference much greater. Submitted by Ed Zoerner, 3/22/2011.

Uncredited Actors: The court clerk is played by veteran actor George E. Stone. One of the anonymous courtroom spectators is played by Arthur Tovey, known in his day as the King of the Extras. Last but not least, Don Anderson is a coutroom spectator. Submitted by gracenote, 8/15/2011.

CARS. (1) Paul's black 1958 Thunderbird Convertible, top down, Lic No PXY 260.

Background Cars. Parked on the roadside by the beachfront homes in the opening scene are:

Driving up Mrs Bradley's street in his TBird, Paul passes these parked cars:

Added by Gary Woloski, 7/30/12.

New business: For the second time, one of Paul's clients, Steve Benton, became Perry's client. (see episode 62 TCOT Howling Dog). Submitted by H. Mason 10/23/14

Recycled newspapers: When Larry was checking the papers in his house he held one from episode 49 TCOT Fancy Figures. There was a folded paper on the desk with a partial headline visible that matched a paper from episode 61 TCOT Bedeviled Doctor. The third paper he got from across the room didn't seem to match any other newspapers shown in the series. Submitted by H. Mason 10/23/14

Hear YouTube presentation of the music edited for this episode by Bernard Herrmann. Added by filmscorerundowns, 8/21/16.

This is the first of two PM directing credits for Walter Grauman, who would later direct 53 episodes of "Murder, She Wrote"...MikeM. 10/17/2016

Pinky Rings: Perry, Paul, Ben Wallace, Johnny Clay...MikeM. 10/17/2016

The radio seen on the bar as the poker game scene opens is a General Electric Dual Speaker AM Tube Radio Alarm Clock combination, model T142. Submitted by Kilo 7/10/2017.

This is the second of five PM appearances for Paula Raymond, whose father was a corporate lawyer...MikeM. 7/17/2017

Comments Edit

Morris Ankrum’s hands are shaking a bit in this episode. And he makes some unnatural pauses in his delivery. Perhaps he was not feeling well when this was filmed? Submitted by gracep, 9/10/2010.

This is the 11th of Morris Ankrum's 22 appearances as a PM judge. Ankrum had a law degree from USC. He passed away in September 1964, the month before his last PM episode aired. Submitted by MikeM, 11/09/2012.
+ He was also an Economics professor & has 275 IMDb credits, including "Earth vs. the Flying Saucers" & "Invaders from Mars." Mike Bedard 7.11.16 MeTV airing.
Burger's Finest Hour: "The District Attorney's Office is more interested in Justice than in obtaining convictions," he told His Honor. Mike B. 7. 11. 16.

Even though the body of Mike Granger was buried when "it was pretty dark", Ben Wallace should've remembered seeing Johnny Clay bury a body under the beach house. jfh 17Jul2017.

The ending to this episode differs from most. After being named by Perry, the killer does not go through the normal “Yes, I did it” histrionics! Instead, Tragg leads the silent culprit off-scene at the end of the big reveal. Ed Zoerner, 3/22/2011.

Questions: How did Perry know Mrs. Bradley put in a claim for her husband's insurance? Paul didn't know. Where did he get that information? Submitted by H. Mason 10/23/14

Funny: Don't miss the last 20 seconds of the episode. I've heard Raymond Burr was a jokester and the last scene shows a good sense of humor and comic timing. As a clock strikes midnight, Della, Paul and Perry try to get out of the office before the last chime. But Della forgot the sliding door to the balcony and Perry forgot the lights. Eric Cooper 18 October 2016

It felt like they had time to fill in. When the chimes sounded, Perry seemed to look outside as if the sound was from an outside clock. Submitted by Perry Baby 1/11/18.

Burger makes one of his usual disclaimer about not interested in convictions but interested in justice. Actually Perry gave Burger the most convictions by getting the guilty to confess so when the confessed person went to trial they were likely convicted and often others associated in the trial for perjury and any number of other crimes. Perry created business for the DA. Submitted by Perry Baby 1/11/18

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