#157: The Case of the
Original Airdate: 11/01/62 Revised
From The Perry Mason TV Show Book (Revised)
Note: In my DVD set, this episode comes after TCOT Dodging Domino. [Added by BobwloCB.]
Mild-mannered Clem "Sandy" Sandover has secretly and meticulously embezzled $201,000 over many years--company audits don't even reveal the missing money! There is, however, other trouble at the company, and when the executive secretary leads Sandy on, and tries to get him in big trouble, she ends up dead.
It's not Sandy but his wife Beth, the previous executive secretary of the company, who is accused of killing her. Beth hires her old friend Perry Mason to go to trial for her.
Starring Raymond Burr
in The Case of THE DOUBLE-ENTRY MIND
Based upon characters created by Erle Stanley Gardner
Barbara Hale, William Hopper, William Talman, Ray Collins
Directed by Allen H. Miner
Written by Jackson Gillis
Arthur Marks | Producer
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
Wiliam Talman as Hamilton Burger
Ray Collins as Lt. Tragg
Wesley Lau as Lt. Anderson
Stuart Erwin as Clem Sandover
Karl Weber as Frank Sellers
Jack Betts as Enos Watterton
Paul Tripp as Steven Banks
Virginia Christine as Beth Sandover
Joan Staley as Sally
Kathleen Hughes as Lita Krail
Richard Reeves as Potkin
Grandon Rhodes as Judge
Pamela Branch as Typist
Don Anderson as Uniformed Armor Car Guard (posted by gracep 10/25/2010)
Director of Photography … Robert G. Hager
Art Direction … Lewis Creber
Assistant Director … Gordon A. Webb
Film Editor … John D. Faure
Casting … Harvey Clermont
Makeup … Irving Pringle
Hair Stylist … Annabell
Wardrobe Supervision … Ed McDermott, Evelyn Carruth
Set Decoration … Charles Q. Vassar
Properties … Ray Thompson
Production Sound Mixer … Herman Lewis
Script Supervision … Cosmo Genovese
Theme Composed by … Fred Steiner
Automobiles Supplied by … Ford Motor Company
Produced by the CBS Television Network
In association with Paisano Productions
Continuity Error: Watch the briefcase in the opening sequence. Clem puts it on the desk with the handle facing towards the desk chair. When next seen, the briefcase has magically turned around, ready for Clem to fill it with money. Submitted by daveb, 11/25/2007.
Speaking of briefcases, has anyone studied the different briefcases in this, or other episodes? I didn't see Perry use his briefcase in this one, but I'm curious about the make and style of Perry's briefcase as well. Otto Gervaert 12/21/20.
When Sandy frantically closed the safe in the office after placing the $45,000 inside, he left the safe handle pointing southeast and hid just as Mr. Sellers and the security drivers entered; as Mr. Sellers opens the safe, the handle is pointing straight down. jfh 07Nov2016.
Mr. Sellers places the $45,000 in the secured pouch for transport, yet when he walks to the door with the security drivers, the pouch appears completely flat. jfh 07Nov2016
Location: The interior seen in the opening is that of the Bradbury Building. The large center opening has been used in many show shots. Show picture and more here. Submitted by Mitch English, 1/11/2006.
+ As noted above, the famous Bradbury Building is used to great effect in this episode. Perhaps the most recent use of the Bradbury Building in film is in 2011's The Artist, which won the Academy Award for Best Picture. There is a symbolic scene in The Artist in which Peppy runs into George on her way up the Bradbury staircase (and to stardom), while George is on his way down. Stuart Erwin's stairway descent is also effectively used as symbolism in this episode of Perry Mason. Submitted by Fifty-Niner on 23 April 2012.
+ Thank you, Mitch and Fifty-Niner. The minute i saw that interior, i knew i had seen it before, but i figured i would never find out where it was. This website -- and folks like you two -- make watching the series a lot more fun. Submitted by catyron, April 22, 2018.
Uncredited Actors: Don Anderson appears as one of the uniformed armored car guards who pick up the money that the frantic Sandy Sandover barely manages to return to his office. Submitted by FredK, 25 Oct 2010.
Sightings: Sitting in the back row of the courtroom gallery, “Miss Carmody” takes in another triumph for Perry. Read about her and other recurring spectators. Submitted by gracep, 1/10/2011. - You can also add the “Little Old Lady in the Hat”, “Quiet Old Man” and “Pencil Mustache Man” to the list of courtroom spectators. Submitted by Kenmore 1/03/2012
Joan Staley was the centerfold Playmate for November, 1958. See here (SFW). She retired following a horse-riding accident a few years after filming this episode. Submitted by CGraul, 8/18/2011.
+ CGraul's link takes you to a copy of her actual centerfold, but as CGraul says, it is Safe For Work because centerfolds weren't particularly revealing in 1958. What I find interesting about the picture is that there is a tv camera in the background, with the CBS Eye logo on it! Perry Mason, on CBS, is the only credit IMDB lists for Joan for 1958, TCOT Corresponding Corpse! In her centerfold, Joan's holding what looks like a script with a title on the front--her Perry Mason script? Wouldn't that be fabulous? But i can't read the title. Submitted by DyNama, 1/20/2015
+ Safe For Work ?? I don't know where CGraul or DyNama work, but please, please tell me they're hiring !! Seriously though, it's hard to believe she would have posed at only 18 - if IMDB is correct - as 21 was then the common age of majority...particularly for something like "calendar art". Submitted by Notcom, 020216.
+ Until I read DyNama's comment I hadn't even noticed the camera! A very attractive camera, too. Rickapolis 05/04/17
Here's another example of the fur coat rule. "Sally" (Joan Staley) had a mink coat and by gawd she wasn't going to take it off! Maybe courthouses don't have a coat check. Submitted by DyNama, 1/7/2014
+ Her having in on during her testimony - or more precisely as she's returning to the gallery after testifying - actually forms an element of the plot. Notcom, 042120.
++ Nit picker alert! Sally's fur is a stole, not a coat. OLEF641 5/5/21
CARS. (1) Santa Fe Diesel Locomotive Number 20, a General Motors EMD F3 in ATSF's Warbonnet paint scheme, hauls Clem Sandover's train to Phoenix with the help of three B-units. No 20 was built in November 1946. Her sister, No 19, had a little accident in 1948. A full-scale reproduction of No 19 is seen in Rex Rexroth's bedroom in the 2003 Coen Brothers movie Intolerable Cruelty ("Santa Fe tarts" scene).
- (2) Clem gets home in a 1962 Ford Galaxie Mainliner 4-Door Sedan TAXI, light color, Licence Number R36 014.
- (3) Paul drives his black 1962 Thunderbird Convertible to Lita Krail's place.
- (4) Outside Lita's place, strawberry farmer Cyrus Potkin is fixing his drab 1946-1950 Diamond T Cab-Forward truck, Stake-bed w/ canvas cover, possibly Model 509SC (capacity 2-3½ tons). Diamond Ts have a very cool hood ornament.
The dialogue tells us that Clem has a car but we don't get to see it. I bet it's a Rambler Six. Added by Gary Woloski, 6/21/13.
It's for you, Mr. Mason: Perry's questioning Mr. Banks in his office when his secretary, Sally, interrupts; there's a call for the counselor at her desk. Paul Drake has tracked him down again. Submitted by francis, 11/13/14.
Della's Impersonation: Miss Street wore a blonde wig while sitting at a bar and let Mr. Banks think she was Sally Adams. The dialog seemed to indicate that she also pretended to be Sally in a telephone call to Mr. Banks. Submitted by H. Mason 12/18/14
Paul's car phone: For the second time Paul was shown using the phone in his car. First time was episode 107 TCOT Larcenous Lady. Submitted by H. Mason 12/18/14
This is the first of five PM directing credits for Allen H. Miner...MikeM. 11/7/2016
This is the fourth of four PM appearances for Joan Staley, who got the Staley name from her marriage to Charles Staley...MikeM. 2/13/2017
That last bill falling from the briefcase can be seen to actually fall from above the briefcase. Noticed by Kilo 1/30/2020.
Sandy's $201 grand would be nearly $1.75 million in 2021 money. OLEF641 5/5/21
Stuart Erwin does an excellent job portraying a man in the grip of greed and guilt in this episode. This is quite a change from his earlier comedic roles. Personally, I will always associate him with the role of the unlucky-in-love hypochondriac Tommy Nash in the 1933 W.C. Fields film, International House. It's amazing that he had the range to seemingly have a total breakdown, complete with sweat and tears, in this Perry Mason episode. Submitted by Fifty-Niner on 23 April 2012.
+ His (Stuart Erwin) acting in this episode is certainly notable ... I can think of few PM villains who have made me dislike them more, while also finding them darkly funny. Erwin's 'Clem Sandover' is a nasty piece of work, disloyal to wife and his employer all at once. But I had to laugh at his dialogue as well .. "I bought a sport coat!" Wow! Submiited by MikeReese, 2/13/2017.
++ I love Stuart Erwin in almost any role, comedic, dramatic, or villainous. He did not disappoint his time either. Submitted by catyron, 04/22/18.
+++ This episode is airing on MeTV on the morning of 12/21/2020. Stuart Erwin died on December 21, 1967 in Beverly Hills, California of a heart attack, so this is on the 53rd anniversary of his death. Submitted by k2m 12/23/2020
Does anyone else feel that TCOT Double-Entry Mind belongs in the Twilight Zone? The eerie night scenes in the Bradbury Building, culminating in the ironic sound of Sandy's tape recording as he sidles down the stairs, seems inspired by Perry's friend Rod Serling. Submitted by 10yearoldfan, 13 September 2013.
Blonde Della: I enjoyed seeing Della (briefly) as a blonde. Is this the only time in the series when she wears a wig? Submitted by DellaFan, 10/11/2014.
+ In the final episode (#271, TCOT Final Fadeout), Barbara Hale appears in a blonde wig as an unnamed southern belle in a bar. TriviaSleuth 8/14/19
++ For Della Devotes: If you like seeing Barbara Hale as blonde, you should seek out The Houston Story (1956, directed by William Castle, B & W, distributed by Columbia Pictures). Della stars as a night club chanteuse bravely singing a few hot numbers (apparently herself) and capably filling out great evening and swimwear outfits (certainly herself). The posters on Wikipedia show her as a redhead, but in the film she looks more platinum blonde as fits the era. I've seen it several times, and while it's not great cinema, I enjoyed seeing Barbara Hale in a more forceful role. I don't recall seeing any of the Curious Coffee Cups, though, the connection to Columbia notwithstanding. JohnK, 5 January, 2022.
> To demonstrate that gibberish text (in newspapers) isn't peculiar to PM, this is what follows under the headlines in said movie (it pertains to the discovery of a body) An immediate investigation is assured and indications are that some new light will be she on the situation in the near future. Available facts seem vague but authorities feel that time will disclose some means of arriving at a solution. Future plans will, of necessity, have great bearing on the situation... Questions ?? Notcom 010622.
I loved the portrayal of Steven Banks by Paul Tripp. He spouts oily cliché after cliché as he brandishes his putter. Wick 01/05/2022
Original Airdate: Does anybody know why there is a discrepancy in the date this episode was first shown? Somebody changed the date for this page. The CBS / Paramount DVD series says it was November 1, 1962. The Kelleher and Merrill book, TV.com and other sources say it was originally broadcast October 18, 1962. Submitted by H. Mason 12/18/14... IMDb and Wikipedia both give an original airdate of 18 October 1962...MikeM. 2/13/2017
I had to edit the original summary, it contained spoilers. Read the original summary if you want by clicking on the TV Show Book link at the top, but preferably after you've watched this episode. Submitted by DyNama, 1/20/2015
To my mind, this is by far the best episode of Season 6. It's Stuart Erwin's episode (and he takes it and runs with it), but he is assisted by a couple of neat plot twists and the truly noirish atmosphere of the Bradbury Building, as mentioned above by 10yearoldfan. Add Kathleen Hughes as a terrific (and, of course, duplicitous) femme fatale and what's not to like? Submitted by BobH, 20 March 2017.
I concur. It is certainly one of the most neatly and logically plotted episodes, with none of those gaps in logic we so often must ignore. Our villain is responsible for two deaths; our victim is "killed" twice; there are two thefts; and there are two blondes in furs - double entry, indeed! DODay 11/13/17
That ubiquitous staircase set makes a brief, partial appearance when Frank Sellers takes a call from a frantic Clem - I believe that is four episodes in a row. DODay 11/13/17
Anyone else think Jack Betts looks like a young Clark Gable? DOD 12/21/20
+ I do! Submitted by catyron, June 8th, 2021.