Perry Mason (1957–1966)
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The Case of the Unsuitable Uncle 

Merchant seaman Harry Fothergill arrives in the U.S. with his mate Dickie to visit Dickie's brother and his family. Broke Dickie creates a will leaving a small fortune to Harry and his niece. When Dickie is murdered, Harry is charged.



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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Lt. Tragg (credit only)
Harry Fothergill
Dickie Durham
Russell W. Durham
Frank Warden
George Kane ...
Gil Simpson
Paula Durham
Crystal Durham
Charles Irving ...
George Coleman - Bartender


Sailors Dickie Durham and Harry Fothergill visit Dickie's oil-rich brother, Russell. Dickie is out to make trouble, trying to squeeze money out of Russell and reminding Russell's wife, Crystal, of their affair before her marriage. His niece, Paula, likes him, but he nearly gets into a fight with Paula's boyfriend. When Dickie learns that his own brother would just as soon kill him, he goes to Perry to draw up a will. He leaves huge sums to Harry and Paula but needs Harry to pay Perry's $100 fee. When Dickie goes missing, Russell says he'll pay the $18,000 Dickie wants if Harry will find him and get him to ship out of the country. Harry does find a surly, uncooperative Dickie who walks out on him. The next time we see Dickie, he's a corpse. To defend his client, Perry will have to navigate around shady business arrangements, private scandals, and red herrings. Written by arthurblock

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Crime | Drama | Mystery





Release Date:

8 November 1962 (USA)  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


George E. Stone's final role. See more »


[first lines]
Harry Fothergill: Oh, you've got that look in your eye again, Dickie.
Dickie Durham: And the tase of salt water and bilge oil in my mouth. One tankard of ale, old sport. Then we'll get on with our business, huh?
See more »

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User Reviews

Good courtroom scenes makes this a classic Mason episode
10 September 2012 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

A surprising good episode from the sixth season. This episode has all the mystery and suspense that has made the "Perry Mason" series a great watch throughout the years.

The show begins with two rather suspicious gentlemen arriving in California from Austrialia. One man is Dickie Durham who appears to be some type of con-artist and the other is a regular sailor named Lord Harry Fothergill.

It is not long until Dickie is thrown in jail and he does not even have enough money to pay his fine. So Dickie sends Lord Harry to his brother's house in the rich section of town. His brother is none other than the oil-man Russell Durham.

We see that there was conflict between Russell and his brother Dickie. Seems like Russell wants Dickie out of his house and outside the country as soon as possible. He give a check to Lord Harry for $18,000 to make sure that Dickie boards a ship to another country.

But before the ship sets out, Dickie is found dead. With Lord Harry is possession of a $18,000 check plus the fact that a new Will had been made with Lord Harry getting a large amount of money- the police arrest Harry for the murder. Harry had known about the Will but since Dickie never had any money- he thought it was a joke.

With Perry defending Harry, we get a classic courtroom scene that provides the viewer with all the seedy information. From oil-wells to land contracts all is not what they seem. With a precision of a surgeon, Perry weaves through the testimony to find the true murderer. At the close of the show Perry has been able to keep a secret hidden that could have rocked a family.

Good Watch.

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