The Untouchables: Season 1, Episode 2

Ma Barker and Her Boys (22 Oct. 1959)

TV Episode  |   |  Action, Crime, Drama
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Ratings: 7.4/10 from 73 users  
Reviews: 4 user | 1 critic

Ness has tracked down the notorious bank robber Ma Barker, a woman who turned her back on religion in order to lead a life of crime with her sons.



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Episode complete credited cast:
George 'Pa' Barker
Joe Di Reda ...
Robert Ivers ...
Peter Baldwin ...
Abel Fernandez ...
Walter Winchell ...
Narrator (voice)


Eliot Ness and the Untouchables are in Florida to arrest Ma Barker and her sons who are staying at a holiday motel under assumed names. With the aid of the State Police, they stage a raid but the well-armed Barker gang hold them off for over 6 hours. Years before, Ma Barker's sons had developed quite a reputation as petty criminals but her real career in crime started when one of them, Herman, was shot by a policeman during a break-in. Soon the Midwest is in the midst of a crime spree that included kidnappings and robberies. The family starts to fall apart when one of her sons, Doc, decides to get married. He leaves home but used currency from a kidnapping and Ness is soon on his trail. Ma Barker gives their location away leading to Ness' raid. Written by garykmcd

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Action | Crime | Drama





Release Date:

22 October 1959 (USA)  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


J. Edgar Hoover and Frank Sinatra both protested the release of the premiere of the series in 1959 for different reasons. Hoover objected when an episode depicted the fictional character Eliot Ness--based on real-life Treasury Agent Eliot Ness--taking down Ma Barker and her gang when it was actually the FBI which deserved full credit. Sinatra did not like the way Italian-Americans were portrayed as Mafia bosses and gangsters. See more »


The Untouchables surround the Barkers in a Florida motel, but they were actually caught in an old farmhouse they rented to lay low. See more »

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User Reviews

Gangster Mother of the year
31 May 2012 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

Two Oscar winning actresses from different generations, Claire Trevor and Louise Fletcher, star in this wildly fictional tale of how Eliot Ness and his Untouchables aid in the taking down of that notorious bank robbing family the Barkers. Anyone with a modicum of knowledge knows Ness had nothing to do with that operation. When Frank Sinatra and J. Edgar Hoover both object to a program that's taking in a lot of territory pilgrim.

Still Trevor gives one great expansive performance as the infamous gangster mother of the year, Ma Barker. She turns out to be the male role model as opposed to poor ineffectual Vaughn Taylor who she and the four sociopathic sons she raised. Louise Fletcher is the girlfriend of one of them who Trevor makes most definitely unwelcome. Ain't nobody good enough for her lovely sons.

That final shootout that has gone down in gangster lore when the family opens up the family arsenal is classic. This family could have been the poster family for the NRA.

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