Perry Mason (1957–1966)
8.1/10
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The Case of the Crooked Candle 

Martha and Rita show up at a beauty salon answering to the same name "Mrs. Bradford." Their husband Joe turns up dead on his boat, Martha is charged with his murder, and a candle on the table is leaning about twenty degrees.

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(based on the novel by), (teleplay)
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Cast

Episode cast overview:
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Martha Bradford
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Larry Sands - Surveyor
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Rita Wasselle Bradford
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Jack Harper
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Capt. Noble
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George Nikolides
Bruce Cowling ...
Joe Bradford
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Helene Santley ...
Receptionist
Hal Taggart ...
Court Clerk

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Storyline

At a beauty shop two women answer to the same name for an appointment. Both have the married name Mrs. Joe Bradford plus they have identical keys to the same home. Martha Bradford who lives there now tries to contact her husband but he refuses to talk to her as he has a habit of miss treating her. That night the other woman Rita enters the house scaring Martha who finds Rita's wet footprints. The next day Martha contacts Perry for help in finding her husband to learn the truth. Joe's second in command Jack Harper sends them on a wild goose chase where they meet Larry Sands and a sheepherder who have little good to say about Joe. When confronted, Harper tells them Joe is on his boat in the harbor. Perry and Della visit the boat only to find Joe Bradford dead and a crooked candle in a hurricane lantern that has burned evenly. Martha's fingerprints are on the candle even though she swears to Perry she was never on the boat. Why was the candle crooked and how it fits into the case is a ... Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Crime | Drama | Mystery

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Release Date:

30 November 1957 (USA)  »

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Technical Specs

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Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The soundtrack with a string section during moments of imminent danger was later to be reused noticeably on the Twilight Zone several times starting two years later. See more »

Goofs

The victim is murdered with a blow on top of the head with a hand axe. When the body is discovered, there is no blood on top of the victim's head; his hair isn't even mussed. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Receptionist: [answering phone] Clayton Beauty Salon. Oh, yes, Mrs. Gale. Hair set and manicure? Well, uh, Laura will be free at 1:30. Good. I'll put you down. Thank you.
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User Reviews

 
A craft devoid of life
27 June 2014 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

The victim in this Perry Mason episode is Bruce Cowling, not the nicest guy in the world, in fact for a while he was thought of as a bigamist. Easy to do when both Nancy Gates and Doris Singleton show up at a hair salon claiming to be Mrs. Cowling.

It's Gates who becomes Raymond Burr's client. An interesting case because it's Raymond Burr and Barbara Hale who row out to Cowling's boat in search of him. All they find is a craft devoid of life and Cowling's dead body. Signs of a blow to the head show somebody killed him, but who.

He wasn't any better in business and associates like Robert Clarke, Whit Bissell, and Henry Corden also would love to have done him in.

As per the title of the story, a candle in a hurricane lamp tilted and burned out provides the clue.

Not crazy about this episode since I don't think Singleton's character was handled well by the writers.


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