An actor rigs a fake on-air shooting with the connivance of his friend, the show's host, but the practical joke goes horribly wrong when the gun, which he'd loaded with blanks, turns out to contain a live round.
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Christian I. Nyby II
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A comedian hatches a great joke: rig a fake killing live on TV. He takes a gun with blanks, and shoots his accomplice during a talk show. Happy that his joke has been successful, he walks away. His accomplice is really dead, however, and nearly a million viewers saw him pull the trigger. Written by
Murray Chapman <email@example.com>
Jennifer O'Neal, who played the lead role of Alison Carr in this episode, was also a lead player in a television series called Cover Up two years earlier. That show ended soon after the show's male lead, Jon-Erik Hexum, accidentally shot and killed himself with a prop gun on set. See more »
Even if someone else had exchanged the blank for a live round, the state would not dismiss homicide charges against the defendant as he was guilty of manslaughter due to pointing a firearm at another and failing to verify a blank round was loaded. See more »
As part of a comic prank on a live TV show, Robert McCay takes a gun loaded with blanks and pretends to shoot his friend and host Steve Carr. However the gun is loaded and McCay kills Carr. Mason agrees to defend McCay as he claims someone else loaded the gun. Meanwhile Paul Drake tries to track down the film shot on the set of McCay's movie that may show who loaded the gun with live shells.
When you've seen one Perry Mason film then you've pretty much seen all of them. Seemingly open and shut case is contested by Perry Mason. Drake chases the key piece of evidence (often with a sidekick) providing comedy and action while Mason does the courtroom shocks. It all ends with twist that you couldn't guess unless by luck. If you like them then this will just about hold you as it is about average fore the series. The plot is OK but if you start to look closely at it, it is so full of holes it could be called a sieve. The twist at the end is out of the blue but just feels silly in the setting of a courtroom (I mean where has the judge gone during the two `private chats').
The cast hold their roles well. Burr is only doing his thrid Mason movie of the period and feels fresh and enthusiastic. Katt is OK and some of his stuff is amusing his ususal side kick is poor though. The best part of the cast is Stiers who I always felt was one of the more capable actors to play Mason's opposite number on the prosecution team.
Overall this is the rule if you like a Mason film then you'll like them all. This is true here, all the formula is in full effect and only a weaker than usual plot means it feels like it is slightly below the average for the series.
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