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A Perry Mason Mystery: The Case of the Jealous Jokester (1995)

Bill McKenzie's niece works as a production assistant for controversial television personality Josie Joplin, who publicly accuses her of having an affair with her husband. One night ... See full summary »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Wild Bill McKenzie
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Della Street
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Ken Malansky
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Toby Joplin
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Lisa Kaye
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Ben Landry
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Janice
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Claire Howard
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Patricia MacDonald
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Ivy West
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Lt. Brock
Leslie Bevis ...
Rosa Westlake
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Storyline

Bill McKenzie's niece works as a production assistant for controversial television personality Josie Joplin, who publicly accuses her of having an affair with her husband. One night McKenzie's niece receives a message which she believes is from Josie to go to her hotel room, when she gets there someone knocks her out and when she wakes up, Josie is dead and she's the number one suspect, so McKenzie defends her. Written by <rcs0411@yahoo.com>

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Crime | Drama | Mystery

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Release Date:

10 April 1995 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Perry Mason - Il caso Jokester  »

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1.33 : 1
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Final movie of the Perry Mason series in which Hal Holbrook substituted after the death of Raymond Burr. See more »

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User Reviews

OK but not great – the ghost of Burr looms large
18 January 2003 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

Lawyer Bill McKenzie's niece works as an assistant to sitcom star Josie Joplin. He flies to see her when she is accused of having an affair with Josie's husband, Toby. Ivy assures her Uncle that the story and an on-set fight are all part of a PR stunt. However when Ivy is framed for Josie's murder, Bill returns to help defend her. Meanwhile Ken is sent to try and find the driver of a jeep seen speeding away from Josie's hotel just before the murder, aided (and hindered) by a National Informer photographer desperate for a big story.

With the death of burr the series tried to keep the formula alive with the shell of the cast and the same basic stories. For most of the `Wild Bill' episodes it sort of worked. Here the story is reasonable but again it needs to have some link for Bill rather than just have him defend someone like Mason could. The story is OK but the courtroom scenes lack the fireworks (comparatively anyway) that mason brought. Here Bill seems to expose people's weaknesses then the scenes just end in order to keep the person alive as a suspect. The end is a better twist than usual but is no less illogical or out-of-the-blue than others.

Holbrook is good in the lead and makes his own character rather than aping Mason. Moses is his usual self and does all the action stuff reasonably well. Hale has clearly decided enough is enough and not-so-subtly removes herself from the series and hands over to Taylor who does OK (but replacing Della in the movies doesn't mean much in terms of hard work). This casting was of interest to me because Taylor had starred as a different character ten years early in Perry Mason Returns. The support cast is filled with reasonably well known faces who all do a TVM sufficient job. Cannon is good and is supported by the unmistakable Roberts (Annie Hall etc) and, amusingly enough, David Rasche (Sledge Hammer).

Overall this is an average entry to the series and was (at time of writing) the last one they made. It's not that it's bad but the ghost of burr looms large over it. Areas where Mason was weak are forgotten and the parts of the formula that he did well and now made to look weak.


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