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Perry Mason: Season 3, Vol. 2
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I'd also like two-dollar gas, killer abs, and a winning lottery ticket, but they're not gonna happen either, so I'll just say here and now that Paramount has done a superb job of remastering the PM series for us diehards, and I encourage the company to stick with the project.
When I look at the quality of the prints, that the episodes have been restored in their entirety, that the episodes are generally longer than most of today's popular dramatic series, and the plain fact that paying several bucks for each episode of one of my all-time favorite shows is no big hit on my wallet when it's spread out over months and years, I'm okay with the pricing and staggered releases. (And no, I don't work for or represent Paramount, and yes, like everyone else I have only so much disposable income in any given month.)
I even bought the PM 50th Anniversary set for its extras and for the lovely Barbara Hale (sometimes joined by series producer/director Arthur Marks) providing the intros. It was worth the price and the duplication of episodes.
I expect many of my fellow Amazon reviewers will take the time to skewer me for my take on Paramount's approach, and that's okay. It's all a matter of opinion and perspective. But for me, the fact that Paramount is providing us fans with such great prints of the PM series is cause for celebration. "You get what you pay for," the saying goes, and my money is being well-spent.
Raymond Burr had some good roles in films, but will always be remembered as Perry Mason. It was Gardner himself who picked Burr, even though the studio only agreed to let him test for Perry if he would test for Burger too! Barbara Hale was his pretty secretary, Della Street, who kept Perry human and was in love with him. William Hopper was the dapper detective, Paul Drake. He had a playful and flirtatious relationship with Della but every viewer knew that secretly her heart belonged to Perry.
William Talman as D.A. Hamilton Burger would almost be ready to gloat, Lt. Tragg (Ray Collins) not far behind, when Perry would spring his client by revealing the real killer on the witness stand. There has never been anything close to it in genre on television since. Its mix of drama, noir, and humor, and its truly likable characters, made for terrific viewing.
Season three had some great episodes, including a case where Paul was the accused, in a twisty tail of blackmail and murder. Releasing them in half seasons, the first half on volume one, the second on volume two, may indeed be an effective but annoying marketing scheme, but with all the junk out there we're lucky to actually have a few worthy releases such as Perry Mason even available.Read more ›
But 1960 was a special year indeed. Firstly William Talman, who played Hamilton Burger the brilliant but hapless Los Angeles County District Attorney was temporarily kicked off the show following his arrest following a raid at a "wild nude party" in Hollywood in March 1960, resulting in a stream of appearances by lesser prosecutors. As a result he is absent from many of the episodes in this series.
Secondly the Mason series, always a home for some of the better character actors of the era, had in the second half of the season, some amazing cast members. Louise Fletcher, later to win an Oscar, plays Gladys Doyle in The Case of the Mythical Monkeys. Norman Fell, wearing a silly thin mustache, plays a character named Casper Pedley. Joining them is B-movie Diva Beverly Garland. And that is just in one episode.
These episodes are all well-written, although few lawyers ever object as Mason and Burger do that the evidence is "irrelevant, immaterial and incompetent." In "the Case of the Prudent Prosecutor" Burger actually calls Perry to defend his old friend (played by J. Pat O'Malley). In the ensuing preliminary hearing Mason exposes a corporate scandal worthy of the wall street Journal. Barbara Bain appears in another episode the Weary Wildcatter where a con man sells several hundred percent in an oil well that happens to come in.
If you love Perry Mason, this second part of the third season will be rerun as often on your DVD as Ted Turner did on WTBS.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
The Perry Mason TV programs set the standard for all later TV court/lawyer shows to try to meet. I believe that Perry Mason was and is the best show of its kind ever on television.Published 2 months ago by Rex Gillham
Always have loved the way the story lines go in this drama. Raymond Burr made an excellent Perry Mason. Wouldn't have the series any other way.Published 3 months ago by Kim Wachowiak
These shows are fun and completely worth the very modest price. Of course they're dated and kind of hokey, but that's part of the fun. Read morePublished 4 months ago by I. V. Ludus