The Untouchables (1959–1963)
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Ma Barker and Her Boys 

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 ...
Peter Baldwin ...
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

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


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?


When J. Edgar Hoover learned of this episode, he contacted the producers and insisted that in future broadcasts the episode be shown with a disclaimer stating that the FBI, not the Treasury Department, was the lead agency in the Barker case. The producers agreed and inserted a spoken disclaimer over the end credits whenever this episode was rerun (the disclaimer was not included on the recent DVD release). 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 »


Rock of Ages
Music by Thomas Hastings
Lyrics by Augustus Montague Toplady
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User Reviews

Only about 98% fictional!
7 November 2015 | by (Bradenton, Florida) – See all my reviews

There was a woman named Ma Barker (Claire Trevor) and he had several evil children who terrorized folks and were career criminals. Apart from that, most of what's in this episode is pure hooey. While it's debatable how much Ma Barker was in charge of the Barker Gang (most sources say she was stupid and unable to lead anyone....J. Edgar Hoover described her as the brains of the family), what isn't is that the FBI killed her in a shootout and Elliot Ness had absolutely nothing to do with this...nothing. Now if you can look past that it's all fictional, then you'll probably enjoy this show. As for me, I like the even crazier version of Ma that you see in "Ma Barker's Killer Brood"-- but this performance by Trevor is pretty silly and frequently over the top! Overall, fun and worth seeing but hardly accurate in any way--and the ending is just insane. But I do wonder how in the opening scene Ma could toss a grenade ONTO an agent and it explodes...and he's STILL alive!!!

By the way, as the blanket is about to be put over one of Ma's dead sons, pay attention---you can CLEARLY see him blink!

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