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The series is noted for crediting the real-life Eliot Ness for many things in which he actually played no part. Most people think Ness was an FBI agent, which he was not (he was an agent for the Treasury Department; the FBI is part of the Department of Justice). This episode, for example, pits Ness against the notorious Barker clan, and depicts him as leading the assault on Ma Barker and her sons at their Florida hideout. In real life Ness was nowhere near the scene of the shootout and, being a Treasury agent, had nothing to do with the tracking down and killing of the Barker clan.
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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).
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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.
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Walter Winchell was credited as the off-screen narrator for this series; however, Les Lampson was the announcer for the series, and was never credited.
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Goofs | Crazy Credits | Quotes | Alternate Versions | Connections | Soundtracks

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