Ted Chase appears to those around him to be losing his grip on reality. His first wife committed suicide and his second wife is destroying his life but he can't divorce her due to a prenup. When she is murdered, he is charged.
Ted Chase is convinced that his wife Irene is cheating on him. Distraught, he even goes so far as to steal a rifle from Tony Benson's' sporting goods store intent on killing her but he can't bring himself yo do it. He can't divorce her due to an agreement he signed with her would bankrupt the family. Ted's two daughters from his first wife now live with his wheelchair bound sister who feels Ted is losing his mind. She suggests he take a vacation with his daughters who refuse to live with him and Irene but Ted is worried about the family business. At his sister's suggestion, Ted asks Perry Mason to reopen the case of his first wife's death, originally ruled a suicide. Irene gets around and seems to have quite a few men interested in her. She was once married to Tony Benson and also dated gunsmith Len Dykes who now works for Benson. Dykes has made two trips to prison for forgery and is now under Irene's control. When Irene is found dead, Ted Chase is charged with murder. Written by
Paul Richards is the client of Raymond Burr in this Perry Mason episode in which he plays a poor schnook of a socialite whose two timing scheming wife is taking away his company and whatever assets with her machinations. Of course with California being a community property state she'll do it anyway in a divorce. A couple of times Richards is shown on a rooftop ready to do her in with a sniper's rifle, but can't quite pull the trigger.
Someone does it to Mari Blanchard whom the writers make to be almost a caricature of a wicked Barbara Stanwyck part. Perhaps Stanwyck was the only actress who could have pulled off this particular wicked woman. There are sure any number of alternate theories and suspects for this woman.
What blows up William Talman's case is forensics. Burr challenges them quite successfully and in doing so unmasks the real killer on the stand.
Not the best of Mason episodes, but all right.
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