Perry Mason: Season 6, Episode 12

The Case of the Polka Dot Pony (20 Dec. 1962)

TV Episode  -   -  Crime | Drama | Mystery
8.0
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Ratings: 8.0/10 from 34 users  
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Burt Renshaw has been looking for his niece Maureen on behalf of a New York lawyer James Grove. Maureen was left on an orphanage's doorstep by his brother just as he was shipping out with ... See full summary »

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Title: The Case of the Polka Dot Pony (20 Dec 1962)

The Case of the Polka Dot Pony (20 Dec 1962) on IMDb 8/10

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Cast

Episode cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
William Talman ...
Wesley Lau ...
Jesse White ...
Burt Renshaw
Virginia Field ...
Angela Renshaw Fernaldi
Burt Metcalfe ...
Richard Campion
Ben Cooper ...
James Grove
Vivi Janiss ...
Margaret MacDonald
Melinda Plowman ...
Maureen Thomas
Eilene Janssen ...
Maureen Franklin
Jonathan Hole ...
Edward Link
Byron Foulger ...
Leverett Thomas - Pop
John Warburton ...
Mr. Campion
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Storyline

Burt Renshaw has been looking for his niece Maureen on behalf of a New York lawyer James Grove. Maureen was left on an orphanage's doorstep by his brother just as he was shipping out with the navy in World War II. The child's mother, who at the time was unfit to raise a child, now wants to be reunited with her daughter. Renshaw is certain that he's found her, Maureen Thomas, who works as an airline hostess. Grove however seems to have found another woman claiming to be the long lost Maureen and Renshaw asks Perry Mason to help out. When Renshaw is found dead, Maureen Thomas is charged with his murder and Perry defends her. Written by garykmcd

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Crime | Drama | Mystery

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20 December 1962 (USA)  »

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1.33 : 1
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Good story but bad casting
21 December 2011 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

This should be a heart-warming story. A recovered alcoholic mother is trying to find her daughter that was given to an orphanage some twenty years ago. The women Angela Renshaw Ferraldi (Virginia Fields) had finally gotten her life straight and married into money. It was her goal to find the child and given her the inheritance and name that she could have never given years ago. Instead we get an episode that is hopelessly miscast and an ending that has the viewer shaking their head in disbelief.

The story starts out simple enough with Ms Renshaw-Ferraldi trying to find her child. She hires an attorney firm to make inquires about the child at some local orphanages in the LA area. Burt Renshaw (Jesse White) is a family member that lives in the LA area and he gets wind of the attempt to find the child. He has some inside information and does some looking of his own.

The outcome is that Burt Renshaw, a camera shop owner, finds the child Maureen Thomas (Melinda Plowman) and the attorney firm finds another child Maureen Franklin (Eilene Janssen), both may be the child of Ms Ferraldi.

Burt Renshaw claims he has proof that Ms Thomas is the true child. And one evening calls Ms Thomas to his shop to give her positive proof. When she arrives Burt has been killed and she flees the store. But a picture is taken of her inside the store when she steps on a special mat that Burt placed in the store for his customers. (Of course the picture was at night in a dark store but comes out looking like it was taken in the best light conditions)

Anyway Maureen Thomas is charged with the murder of Burt. Perry must not only defend Ms Thomas for the murder but also try to prove that she is the daughter of Ms Ferraldi. A deed that at times looks fruitless as most of the evidence, including a polka dot pony, points to the daughter as being Ms Franklin.

Melinda Plowman that was casted as the main character, Ms Maureen Thomas, should have been someone that you felt remorse for after her ordeal in the orphanage. But she came across as a non-caring rough brat that only was interesting when dollar signs were presented. Her acting was more in line with a leader of a women's prison riot or a captain of a roller derby team but not an orphan trying to find her family.

Virginia Fields, which usually does a great job in her work, seemed odd from the very started. Perhaps she was told to play her character in the odd fashion. But the viewer knew something was up with her from the first time she was on the screen.

The ending, where the true facts are presented, is even hard for me to believe. One person is really not what they claim to be. How in the world was Perry the only person, except for the dead man, to know something was amiss. Did the person not have friends or family that would have known something was wrong? Anyway it was what is called TV magic and was presented to end the show in the alloted time.

This episode came across dull for me. The problem was not with the story but with the casting.


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