Perry Mason: Season 1, Episode 36

The Case of the Prodigal Parent (7 Jun. 1958)

TV Episode  -   -  Crime | Drama | Mystery
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 8.0/10 from 82 users  
Reviews: 4 user | 1 critic

Philip Larkin is killed, and his step-father, Joseph Harrison, is charged with murder. Joe is recently divorced from Larkin's mother, Ethel Harrison. With Joe in serious difficulty, Ethel asks Perry Mason to defend him but disappears.


0Check in

On Disc

at Amazon

Editors' Spotlight

Emmy Awards 2014

We have the winners, photos and more in our 2014 Emmys section.

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

list image
a list of 39 titles
created 15 Jan 2013
a list of 5352 titles
created 1 month ago

Related Items

Connect with IMDb

Share this Rating

Title: The Case of the Prodigal Parent (07 Jun 1958)

The Case of the Prodigal Parent (07 Jun 1958) on IMDb 8/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of Perry Mason.
« Previous Episode | 36 of 271 Episodes | Next Episode »


Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Virginia Field ...
Irene Collaro
Herbert Rudley ...
George Durell
Ethel Harrison
Andra Martin ...
Lorraine Stevens
Claire Durell
Joseph Harrison
Terry Becker ...
Philip Larkin
Morris Ankrum ...
Sarah Winslow
Chet Stratton ...
Mr. Alcorn


At an import/export company secretary Lorraine Stevens working a bit late is again asked by Philip Larkin for a date but she refuses after a heated argument about his intentions. Later, Lorraine goes to a jewelry store to pick up a package as asked in a note but they have no package. She tries calling her bosses with no luck as the store prepares to close. About the same time Joseph Harrison is in the hose of his ex-wife with the body of Philip who has been shot. He leaves but returns later to find the police investigating. His prints are found on the gun case for the WWI German gun used but not on the gun itself. After he is arrested, his ex-wife Ethel Harrison visits Perry to hire him to defend her ex-husband for her son's murder which Perry and Della find strange. A piece of film turns up showing Joseph hitting Philip adding to the evidence but Mrs. Harrison has disappeared with both Burger and Perry looking for her. No one will talk and Paul is having no luck as Perry must deduce ... Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

courtroom spectator


Crime | Drama | Mystery





Release Date:

7 June 1958 (USA)  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See  »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Pays and skips
1 August 2014 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

The Perry Mason client in this episode is John Hoyt more often cast as a villain. But because he's a Mason client we know he's innocent.

What's strange here is that his recently divorced ex-wife Fay Wray has given Raymond Burr a retainer and then promptly disappears. It's her son Terry Becker by a former marriage who's the victim. Yet she pays Burr to defend her husband and then skips. As we learn it's a bit more than conflicted loyalty.

From what little we see of Becker and what we hear about him he's a spoiled rich kid who probably no one even his mother really cares about. There is someone that a lot of people care about and go any length to protect even from the truth.

Some interesting aspects, but not one of the better stories.

0 of 0 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Clay's Grille rditewig801
Paul on trial, but cover-up is covered up slackersmom
Perry gets ribald slackersmom
The butler never did it pc-privconfounder
It CAN'T be him/her! pc-privconfounder
How Perry can afford to defend all those deadbeat clients pc-privconfounder
Discuss The Case of the Prodigal Parent (1958) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: