Quincy M.E. (1976–1983)
6.2/10
25
3 user

Whatever Happened to Morris Perlmutter? 

A formerly famous theatre star dies at the end of a robber's gun. Her sister (Rosemary DeCamp), Quincy, and Monahan look for the killer. Her agent, Morris Pearmutter, looks for a comeback in the circumstances.

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, (created by) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Episode cast overview, first billed only:
...
Garry Walberg ...
John S. Ragin ...
...
Danny Tovo (credit only)
...
Joseph Roman ...
Rosemary DeCamp ...
Eugenia Winston
Steven Keats ...
Roland Davies - TV Director
...
Jimmy
...
Attorney David Stillwell
...
TV Producer (as David S. Sheiner)
...
Morris Perlmutter
...
...
Harold
Patti Karr ...
Miriam
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Storyline

Two elderly vaudeville players fight to overcome their age related illness as they seek the murderer of their mutual friend. Meanwhile, Emily is determined to make people aware age related dementia may not be as common as they believe...! Written by Frank Wetmore II

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Genres:

Drama | Mystery | Crime

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Release Date:

4 May 1983 (USA)  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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User Reviews

 
Is this Quincy or Highway to Heaven??
20 July 2015 | by See all my reviews

The opening scenes of Whatever Happened to Morris Pearlmutter begin with an elderly woman coming downstairs to a robbery in progress where the intruder shoots and kills her. Her sister who is upstairs rushes down upon hearing the gunshot and comes face to face with the killer leaving the home. When the victim is brought into the coroner lab, Quincy (Jack Klugman) recognizes her as Violet Watson (Louise Lewis), a former theater actress who often performed with the surviving sister, Eugenia (Rosemary DeCamp). The police work with Eugenia in trying to identify the killer through mugshots to no avail, but she later sees a photo of a prominent young man in the newspaper who she is certain is the murderer. This wild claim is met with skepticism by the police who believe she is either mistaken or in the early stages of Alzheimer's like her sister.

Another plot of this episode revolves around Morris Pearlmutter (Keenan Wynn), a friend and fellow actor who worked with the sisters many years ago and makes a grand entrance at the funeral. He has continued to work as an actor in bit parts but then receives a big break when he is cast as the lead in a live televised theater-style production. The only problem is that there is a great deal of dialogue for his character and his memory not being as sharp as it once was, he struggles to remember his lines during rehearsals which leads to doubt as to whether he will be able to pull off the performance.

While there is a murder investigation featured in this episode as the audience does not see the face of the murderer in the opening scenes, this is completely relegated to the background and the entire focus becomes Morris and his struggles as an aging man/struggling actor no longer feeling relevant or able to perform like he used to. Since this is Quincy and not Highway to Heaven where we saw countless stories about older people struggling with aging issues and battling others to remain independent, the murder investigation should have been front and center with Morris in the background and not the opposite. Keenan Wynn gives a solid performance as Morris in this episode, but none of these scenes or the storyline fit with this show and all of it would have been better suited by playing out with Michael Landon's angel character.

Another complaint I have is the stupidity of the opening scenes. Violet Watson walks down the stairs having an imaginary conversation with Cecil DeMille and is speaking loudly enough where anyone in the vicinity should be able to hear her, but somehow the burglar in the room at the bottom of the stairs with an open doorway does not. Even when she enters the room and he finally realizes she is there, she again says something nonsensical due to her condition and he shoots her. Wouldn't what she said have signaled that she was senile and why would you take the unnecessary risk of shooting her? But then when her sister comes downstairs and faces the killer realizing and reacting to what was happening, he just looks at her and leaves. Why would you kill one eyewitness, the clearly incompetent one, but then leave another, the clearly lucid one who could identify and put you way?? I just felt that this was so ridiculous and unbelievable.

Sadly, it seems the show has completely lost focus at this point and I would not recommend this episode unless you are a huge Keenan Wynn fan or have an appreciation of Highway to Heaven type stories.


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