Wednesday, March 16, 2022


Terence Towles Canote at A Shroud of Thoughts is hosting The 8th Annual Favourite TV Show Episode Blogathon. The popular blogathon is running from March 18th to 20th.

First aired: Sunday, February 13, 1966
Written by Ernest Frankel and Orville H. Hampton
Based on Erle Stanley Gardner's The Case of the Moth-Eaten Mink
Directed by Jesse Hibbs

Introducing the cast of characters:

PERRY MASON (Raymond Burr)
Attorney-at-law whose clients pay for advice they refuse to follow.

DELLA STREET (Barbara Hale)
Efficient secretary who is not easily fazed by the risks taken by her crusading boss. Perks of the job include the boss and gallery openings.

PAUL DRAKE (William Hopper)
A private detective who does have clients other than Perry Mason, but it is funny how all roads seem to lead back to the attorney.

LT. STEVE DRUMM (Richard Anderson)
This case has the by-the-book officer seeking more than justice and looking in the wrong places.

BOBBI DANE (Francine York)
A young buyer for an art gallery who is on the receiving end of unwanted attention from gangsters.

FRANCIS CLUNE (Donald Murphy)
An art gallery owner who tries to do the right thing but can't escape police harassment.

SGT. DEKE BRADLEY (Mark Tapscott)
A man with a definite agenda and an apparent chip on his shoulder.

BERT KANNON (Allan Melvin)
A reporter with a sharp nose for news or should we wonder where he gets his stories.

OLAF DEERING (Peter Mamakos)
His trucking firm is the target of hijackings, and he wants to know the reason.

ESTELLE PAIGE (Elisabeth Fraser)
Her troubles began when she merged her trucking firm with that of Olaf Deering.

CAMPBELL BOYD (Richard Angarolo)
A pop artist with the attitude of a true iconoclast.

FLOYD WALTERS (Stanley Clements)
A trusted employee at Deering's trucking firm.

MAC (Steve Conte)
Underling to a gang leader who won't put up with much more bungling.

BUD (Paul Genge)
This case not only baffles the police but also keeps the crooks on their toes.

HAMILTON BURGER (William Talman)
The District Attorney must walk a fine line to bring about the desired conviction in this dramatic case.

JUDGE (Kenneth MacDonald)
Presiding over an emotional case, he must keep D.A. Burger and Attorney Mason in line.

If like me, you are a fan of Erle Stanley Gardner's 1952 novel The Case of the Moth-Eaten Mink or the 1957 television episode, you will note the exciting twists Ernest Frankel and Orville Hampton took with the case, and the incidents they left behind to streamline one of Gardner's most engrossing plots.

The diverging threads of the plot include a murdered police officer, the unexpected discovery of the murder weapon, a piece of pop art the gallery obtained for less than its worth, and hijacking in the trucking industry. Perry is representing an art gallery owner and his buyer as the detective was murdered in the gallery's storeroom. Gallery owner Clunes had contacted the police regarding the suspicious circumstances surrounding the purchase of Sausalito Sunrise. However, the police have no record of the report; only the body of an admired colleague.

Paul Drake goes undercover on what is presumed to be an unrelated case as a trucker when a firm that expanded by a recent merger finds itself the victim of hijackings and thefts. The undercover assignment and an intense hijacking sequence add immensely to the excitement of the episode.

Sausalito Sunrise

Season nine of Perry Mason is filled with interesting episodes including Perry behind the Iron Curtain in The Case of the Fugitive Fraulein, and a colour episode based on Dickens' Oliver Twist in The Case of the Twice-Told Twist.

The crowning glory is a finale for the ages in The Case of the Final Fade-Out when such a thing was rare in episodic television. The episode features murder on the set of a television series with many amusing cameo appearances and asides for the fans. Perhaps a fellow classic TV fan knows of a previous series finale, but I have no record of one predating this cheeky ending for Perry Mason

Wednesday, March 2, 2022


Gill at Realweegiemidget Reviews is hosting The Wilhelm Scream Blogathon! A brilliant idea whose contributions can be found HERE.

The Wilhelm Scream is ubiquitous in movies and television, and as welcome and comforting as the Goofy Yell or the Roadrunner's Beep Beep. Okay. Perhaps the Wilhelm Scream isn't truly comforting because we know that someone has come to a grizzly end, but it has certainly become familiar and a welcome "aha" moment to fans.

My contribution to The Wilhelm Scream Blogathon is an episode of Maverick from its first season, The Savage Hills featuring Jack Kelly as Bart Maverick with guest star Diane Brewster as the recurring character Samantha Crawford, in the second of four episodes. The character was introduced in According to Hoyle in 1947 where "Sam" beat Bret at his own game.

Diane Brewster, Jack Kelly

First aired: Sunday, February 9, 1958
Written by Gerald Drayson Adams
Directed by Douglas Heyes

Roy Huggins created the irreverent and Emmy-winning series Maverick in 1957 and it ran, with various actors until 1962. Our first season finds the Maverick Brothers played by James Garner (Bret) and Jack Kelly (Bart) traveling the television west gambling, doling out the wisdom of their "Old Pappy" and romancing lovely Warner Brothers contractees.

Bart Maverick wanted a good night's sleep and a hearty meal. What he got was grifter Samantha Crawford played by Diane Brewster getting Bart in a lot of trouble with Secret Service Agent Gunnerson played by Peter Whitney, some Natives in The Savage Hills, a possible Federal jail sentence.

Jack Kelly, Peter Whitney

Agent Gunnerson sums things up to an incarcerated Bart: "This girl comes to your hotel room - tries to rob you. You go for the sheriff. She hops into bed. You come back. She tells you she's a Secret Service Agent and I'm a crook. So you team up with her to rob me to get the reward. Is that the way it goes?"

Bart: "I wish I could say 'no.'"

Gunnerson: "She sure must have been a charmer."

Bart: "Dripping honeysuckle, Mr. Gunnerson."

The reward is $10,000 for some counterfeit engraving plates. Bart and Gunnerson team up with a plan to split the reward. All the while, Bart is trying to recall where he's heard the name "Samantha Crawford." But, doggone it, those Maverick boys have so many women in their lives how can they possibly remember them all! 

Jack Kelly, Diane Brewster

Samantha takes the plates and jumps from a riverboat with Bart in pursuit while Gunnerson is knocked out. Attempting a cross-country route the hungry wanderers make the mistake of stealing a food pouch from a Native death lodge. They may have satiated their hunger but now they have some angry men on their trail.

Diane Brewster

Samantha proves resourceful in rescuing Bart from certain torture and this is where the Wilhelm Scream joins the action. Clever Sam starts a distracting fire, grabs a rifle, and down goes one angry Native (Ahhh!) at the 30:13 mark in the proceedings. 

Bart, being a Maverick, becomes susceptible to Sam's later romantic overtures. While Bart sleeps, Sam once again absconds with the plates. Meanwhile, back in civilization, Bart is the subject of a preliminary trial with Gunnerson convinced that Bart knows the whereabouts of Samantha Crawford and/or the plates. After all, there is still that $10,000 reward to consider.

Thurston Hall

Samantha "dripping honeysuckle" Crawford charms the Judge, who also "drips honeysuckle" played by Thurston Hall, a favourite of classic movie fans with 230 film credits including Inspector Crane in The Lone Wolf movies.

Justice prevails when Gunnerson and Maverick split the reward. There is a touching farewell at the railway station between Bart and Samantha.

Diane Brewster, Jack Kelly

Bart: "Goodbye, Samantha."

Samantha: "Goodbye, darling."

Jack Kelly

Bart immediately jumps on board the train when he realizes Samantha has picked his pocket with her goodbye kiss. Samantha waves goodbye from the platform. Those Maverick boys consider themselves as cynical as they come, but they have a strong sentimental streak when it comes to their lovely Warner Brothers contractees.

Diane Brewster

Samantha: "Goodbye, darling. Say "hello" to brother Bret for me. He'll remember me too."



Terence Towles Canote at A Shroud of Thoughts is hosting The 8th Annual Favourite TV Show Episode Blogathon . The popular blogathon is runn...