This show is unusual in that Della is sworn in and must testify in the trial. Submitted by PaulDrake 33, 6/3/2009.
+ She's on the stand about four minutes but utters only 15 words due to Perry's relentless barrage of objections, all of which are sustained by the judge. I thought Burger was going to blow a gasket. Submitted by 65tosspowertrap, 17 April 2014.
++ Testimony Youjus Fakem Tho opinions will vary (see below) I found the sustaining of Perry's objections to be a stretch, particularly given the Baedeker-style wanderings he is often allowed to engage in. That having been said, one wonders how much damage would actually have been done by allowing Della to testify to "all she knows", since she doesn't really know much: she can't say with certainty that the envelope contained the book, or - beyond a privileged communication - that the book even exists. (Burger would have faced the same problem: only two people can testify of their own knowledge to the existence of the book, one on trial the other able to claim refusal-thru-self-incrimination; all the others know of it only thru pure hearsay.) Notcom, 112321.
While certainly Mary K was written to be rather unlikable, I did not find her wholly unsympathetic as she was acting out of desperation to hold on to her unfaithful husband. And to say that her voice was shrill (as it does in the Summary) seems a little unfair, too. Slapping the secretary was designed to make here unsympathetic, but I would pretty mad, too, if I had found out my employee told a doctor I was unfit to be a mother. Submitted by gracenote, 9/2/2011.
+ Not wholly unsympathetic? A dissenting brief is hereby submitted: If we disregard only her tawdry blackmailing tactics, her despicable treatment of everyone else with whom she interacts in the episode, her lying about her pregnancy, her manic disposition, and her willingness to do anything and everything to get her way (including destroying other peoples' lives), what's not to like about Mary K. Davis? Submitted by BobH, 28 February 2016.
Did anyone else notice the eye chart in the doctor’s office? It’s all E’s, every which way (sideways, upside down, backwards). Submitted by gracenote, 9/2/2011.
+ That chart is sometimes called a “Tumbling E.” It’s used with small children or adults who don’t know their letters. When I was a small child and went to the eye doctor, that’s the chart they used. I was instructed to point in the direction of the E. The Landolt C chart is based on the same idea. Submitted by billp, 09/29/2011.
Once again we have an affluent, childless, unhappily-married couple. Submitted by 65tosspowertrap, 4-17-14.
When Paul says at 19:22 "Gunther was her maiden name" the microphone recording the dialogue is not placed correctly. His voice sounds far away unlike his other dialogue. Submitted by Wiseguy70005, 8/01/14.
QUESTION: How was Mary K. Davis killed? Submitted by H. Mason 10/7/14
Mary K was rather old-fashioned (or cheap). Recording cylinders became obsolete ten years before this episode aired. In TCOT Substitute Face we see Della using a somewhat more modern Dictabelt machine. Submitted by vgy7ujm, 29 January 2015.
I was oddly less surprised at the use of recording cylinders, even at that time, than recently discovering that there were home recording/record cutting devices in those days; a local radio show host played a group of 'radio checks' of the big band era on his program 'Jukebox Saturday Night'. I'm guessing by this time they'd gone by the technological wayside for reel to reel tape.. Submitted by MikeReese, 11/13/2023
With respect to "tampering with the mails," Paul says he doesn't want to go to ALCATRAZ: "The History of Alcatraz is surprising to those that only know the Hollywood version. Civil War fortress, infamous federal prison, bird sanctuary, first lighthouse on the West Coast, and the birthplace of the American Indian Red Power movement are a few of the stories of the Rock...Click on Places www.nps.gov/alca/historyculture/places.htm to learn about the military history (1850-1934), the federal penitentiary (1934-1963), and perhaps the most influential event in the island's history - the American Indian occupation (1964 and 1969) - that saved the tribes and maybe the island too," nps.gov chronicles. Mike Bedard 4.30.15
We never learn the cause of death, nor who discovered the body. That screen in the apt window was used just two episodes ago in "Daring Decoy". The legal niceties Perry uses to stymie Burger are both entertaining and perfectly correct. In the summation scene, Perry mentions a murderess who was "hung" for her crime. The proper past tense for "hang" when referring to execution is "hanged".
Philip Ober may be best known for his small but pivotal role as Lester Townsend, assassinated in the United Nations Building in “North by Northwest”. DOD 05/30/18
Barry Kroeger is great as Jarech. He does "slimy" to a tee! --Ed Zoerner, 11/1/23
Don Gardner's name in the cast list leads to an IMDB entry for an actor named Don GARNER, who died in 1991. Don GARDNER passed away shortly after filming this episode, aged just 26 years of age. Submitted by Hermit Crab, 2/2/2017.
+ I just checked; the link has been fixed; it now points to the correct actor. OLEF641; 9/7/2017.
++ As was the case with fellow PM alum Judy Tyler, and perhaps unsurprisingly, Gardner was killed in a traffic accident (tho she died even before her episode aired, whereas he died shortly after his). Ironically, given the importance of the audio evidence during the trial, and Connie's over-the-top confession, his obituary listed his work on the show as being a "dialogue coach". Notcom, 090817.
I have the strong suspicion that Tragg's final line, "You know, he (Burger) never should get mad; why he missed me by at least two feet!" was an adlib - the laughter from all the other people in the scene seems truly genuine, not acted. OLEF641 11/7/2020 +We see Tragg deliver the final line in one shot, then we see Perry, Della, and Paul laughing away in the reverse shot. I suspect that Ray Collins probably told a joke or said something different that caused the uproarious laughter, and then at another time delivered the final line. Submitted by Kenmore 6/08/20201.
Goof: When Ruta Lee explains why she killed the victim, Lee’s lines are dubbed over, the words don’t match her lips. At the end of both sentences the audio says “you” but her lips say “me.” Submitted by Craig, 2/20/2010.
+ Also, at 36:39 Mason's line is dubbed when he says "Objected to on the grounds that the question calls for hearsay evidence..." His lips also do not match the words. Submitted by Wiseguy70005, 8/01/14.
Jarech confronts Mason regarding the torn envelope that Drake pulled out of the trash behind the restaurant. Jarech then tells Mason that he went to Gunther's secret apartment... which he could not possibly have known about, having never seen the address on the envelope. Submitted by bobhoveyga, 6/19/2014
+Jarech was Gunther's attorney. She might have told him about it. Submitted by vgy7ujm, 1/14/15
In the novel the screaming woman was an important part of the plot and occurred at the time of the murder (and screamed by a character who doesn't appear in the episode). In the simplified episode, the only screaming is done by Ruta Lee at the end of the episode. Perhaps this is the only reason Connie Cooper went into hysterics, to make the title of the episode make sense. Submitted by Wiseguy70005, 8/01/14.
+Other than having the same title, the episode bears virtually no relationship to the novel. Submitted by BobH, 10 January 2016.
+ While she was alive Mary K. Davis did a lot of screaming, in my opinion. Quite the shrew. Kilo 6/22/2020.