Perry Mason (1957–1966)
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The Case of the Spanish Cross 

A young delinquent with a criminal record for grand theft, Jimmy Morrow, is believed to have stolen an expensive jeweled cross owned by Curtis Runyon for whom he works. When Runyon is found dead, Jimmy is charged and Perry defends him.

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Cast

Episode cast overview, first billed only:
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Felix Karr
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Miriam Baker
Peter Miles ...
Jimmy Morrow (as Richard Miles)
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Grace Runyan
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James Morrow, Sr.
Donald Randolph ...
Curtis Runyan
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Everett Wormser
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Harlan Warde ...
Sgt. Kenton
Herman Rudin ...
Roger
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Storyline

Collector Curtis Runyan owns a precious art object called "The Spanish Cross," which Felix Karr wishes to buy but they cannot agree on the price. After Karr leaves, Runyan and his secretary Everett Wormser return to find the cross missing. Runyan suspects that it was taken by Jimmy Morrow who is working nearby. Jimmy who is on probation for grand theft auto, works as a gardener for the Runyans. Wheelchair bound Grace Runyan and her husband are estranged, and she has taken a motherly interest in Jimmy. Runyan threatens to call the police and slaps Jimmy who knocks Runyan down. He runs to Mrs. Runyan and then runs off. Felix Karr calls on Perry Mason to defend Jimmy, who has disappeared but Perry refuses his money. However, Perry contacts his father who is a drunk but tells Perry Jimmy did not even steal the car and he knows who did. Later, Runyan is shot and Jimmy is seen holding a gun over the body. Perry must first find his client before he can defend him in court. Written by richardann

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Genres:

Crime | Drama | Mystery

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Release Date:

30 May 1959 (USA)  »

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(RCA Sound Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Quotes

[first lines]
Felix Karr: My dear Runyan, I do wish you would reconsider. I can understand your reluctance to part with the cross, but still, $125,000 is a goodly sum.
Curtis Runyan: You're wasting your time, Karr. I've been offered 200.
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User Reviews

 
Perry shows his soft side while Hamilton Burger has laryngitis
2 May 2012 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

This episode starts out with Curtis Runyan showing a sleazy art dealer, Flex Karr, his valuable antique cross. After escorting Mr Karr to the door, Mr Runyan discovers that someone has stolen the cross. Right outside the window stands Jimmy Morrow, a man that does odd jobs around the Runyan's house, he is standing next to an open window. And since Jimmy is an ex-con he is accused of the theft.

Not only that- later Mr Runyan is found shot and Jimmy is seen running from the scene with a gun in his hand. Needless to say Perry has a stack against him even before deciding if he will take the case.

For some reason Flex Karr ask Perry to defend Jimmy for the murder and theft. Perry finds it very odd that the sleazy art dealer would want to help an ex-con - so Perry, who always loves a good mystery, decides to take the case without Mr Karr's money.

Perry will have to weave his way through a cast of suspicious players. Along with Mr Karr and Jimmy, we have Ms Runyan (Linda Watkins). Ms Runyan is a wheelchair bound estranged wife that seems comfortable with her husband's death. In fact she sides with Jimmy on the issue of the murder.

Everett Wormer (Jonathan Hole) is the private secretary of Mr Runyan. He is the nervous sort of person that seems to be in exactly the right place at the right time. He is the one that sees Jimmy holding the gun.

Miriam Baker (Josephine Hutchinson) is a relative of Ms Runyan and is taking care of the sick Ms Runyan. She seems to take the death of Mr Runyan much worse than anyone else in the episode.

Perry is left with tangled web as he tries to get to the truth of the matter. But through some trickery with one of the witnesses, he soon finds that all is not what it seems at the Runyan estate.

We do get a courtroom confession but the event of the crime could have never been predicted by the viewer. It actually comes out of the blue and hurts more than one person in the process. It was really not a surprising ending but more-or-less a sad state of affairs.

There is some good acting in this episode. Josephine Hutchinson, who I adore as an actress, only has a small part in this episode. But her presents, in any show, demands respect. Jonathan Hole, a regular character actor, is perfect as the nervous secretary. He was a suspect from his first appearance in the show.

The only poor performance was from Peter Miles that played the defendant Jimmy Morrow. He was stiff and unsure of himself. He was more in line for a parking attendant's job rather than acting.

BONUS- During this episode William Talman has a bad case of laryngitis. It appears that after the taping they went back and filmed a small sequence that had the judge asking Hamilton if he needed a delay for his sickness. Hamilton then explains his condition and as a true DA carries out his duty. Also- During the episode Jimmy is on the run from police and hiding in a vacant cellar. Perry goes and gives one of the most inspirational speeches of the entire series. Perry tells Jimmy he has to trust people. Even though perry leaves the cellar alone- he only get a few steps when Jimmy comes to his side and they walk together to Lt Tragg's office.


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