Perry Mason: Season 7, Episode 2

The Case of the Shifty Shoebox (3 Oct. 1963)

TV Episode  |   |  Crime, Drama, Mystery
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Ratings: 7.8/10 from 65 users  
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Sylvia Thompson works with a shady manager at a truck depot plus takes care of a young boy and her derelict brother. A robbery attempt followed by a murder at the depot plus the books showing possible theft has Sylvia charged with murder.



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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Lt. Tragg (credit only)
Constance Ford ...
Sylvia Thompson
Benny Baker ...
John Flickinger aka Uncle Flick
Miles (as Billy Mumy)
Frank Honer
Bill Sheridan
Joe Downing
Miss Frances
Russ Conway ...
Deputy Sheriff
Jim Boles ...
Harry, Night Watchman


John 'Uncle Flick' Flickinger breaks into the office of the Honer & Downing Trucking Company and during a fight his gun goes off. As he escapes, he throws a gun over the fence, where it is later found and hidden in a shoebox by the foster nephew of Flick and his sister Sylvia Thompson, branch bookkeeper for the trucking company. Sylvia tells co-owner Joe Downing that $4,000 is missing from her office, but both Downing and the other owner Frank Honer believe much more money has been disappearing from her branch in recent months, and are particularly suspicious of Bill Sheridan, the branch manager, whom she has also been romantically involved with. Panicking over Honer and Downing's suspicions, Sylvia while looking for Miles opens the shoebox in which the boy, Miles, placed the gun, but the box happens to be empty. Still, Sylvia is charged with murder after Downing is killed and she is seen running from the scene, and Perry defends her. Perry's bond with Miles may be a key to solving ... Written by rbecker28

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Crime | Drama | Mystery





Release Date:

3 October 1963 (USA)  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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User Reviews

A different ending could have saved this show
11 October 2012 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

This episode started with so much interest that I was sure we were in for another great mystery. And then the second half of the show was more like watching paint dry than watching the climax of a thrilling show. Then ending of the show was one of those 'made for TV' moments where without a shred of evidence Perry gets someone to confess to a dirty deed. The viewer is left dumbfounded with the results.

The episode begins when a man breaks in to a trucking company office. We as the viewer see two men fighting and then a gunshot. A few seconds later a man (later found out to be Uncle Flick) comes out of the building and throws a gun across the fence. The gun is found by a small boy named Miles and placed in a shoe-box.

Miles is living at a foster home with Uncle Flick and Aunt Sylvia. Sylvia works at the trucking company as the bookkeeper when she gets called about the shooting. Seems that during the incident the safe was open and a few thousand dollars was taken. So one of the owners wants an audit on the company books. This much to the dislike of Sylvia since she had taken a few hundred dollars to give to a co-worker for a gambling fee.

Sylvia is so distraught that she wonders outside and finds the shoe-box. When she opens the box it is empty. She then goes to the company to talk with owner Joe Downing. However she finds him shot and flees the scene. She is seen by the night watchman and also Perry Mason making a quick getaway from the building. Sylvia is charged with murder. When the shoe-box is found it contains the murder weapon and has Sylvia's fingerprints on the box. Perry will defend her in court.

Everything is going well till this point and then the bottom drops out. For some reason the writers want an interaction between Perry and the boy. This will prove disastrous. On camera it appeared that both Raymond Burr and Bill Mumy (Miles) were uncomfortable with the connection. When Miles takes a bus across town to run into the courtroom with the shoe-box and hugs Perry, I knew the show was in dire straits.

Even though the story was not really that bad, the ending left the viewer feeling cheated. With a different ending this could have been a great show but we are left with a show that is just 'nice', nothing else.

8 of 11 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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