The Untouchables: Season 3, Episode 21

Man in the Middle (5 Apr. 1962)

TV Episode  |   |  Action, Crime, Drama
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Slot machines have become all the rage and William 'Porker' Davis is making a fortune on all of those nickels and dimes. He soon comes under pressure from mobster Joe Bomer who's prepared ... See full summary »


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Title: Man in the Middle (05 Apr 1962)

Man in the Middle (05 Apr 1962) on IMDb 7.1/10

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Episode cast overview:
Benjy Liemer
Tom Drake ...
Joe Bomer
Julie Liemer
William 'Porker' Davis
Nicholas Georgiade ...
Robert Christopher ...
Matty Karsh
Moose Tobin
Paul Barselou ...
Walter Hale (as Paul Barselow)
Louis Nicoletti ...
Floorman (as Louis A. Nicoletti)
Joey Barnum ...
Walter Winchell ...
Narrator (voice)


Slot machines have become all the rage and William 'Porker' Davis is making a fortune on all of those nickels and dimes. He soon comes under pressure from mobster Joe Bomer who's prepared to let him stay in business provided he gives the players a 70% return on their bets thereby making sure they will always come back. Davis agrees but when Bomer finds out the machines have been doctored to pay out less, Davis is soon on the run. Turns out it's Davis' friend and Bomer employee Benjy Liemer who has been fiddling with the machines and also providing Ness with anonymous tips. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Action | Crime | Drama





Release Date:

5 April 1962 (USA)  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


The narration that begins the third act states that the murder of "Porker" Davis takes place on the evening of November 16, 1933. However, the tag placed on the morgue drawer states that the body was received on October 4, 1933. See more »

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User Reviews

Middle Men
19 December 2013 | by (brighton, ma) – See all my reviews

Poor Martin Balsam was once a big shot, but he was brought down by others, two to be specific, one of them, Gavin McLeod, a former friend of his. When McLeod, who's fair to medium high in the rackets, appears to be getting too big for his britches, top guy Tom Drake doesn't like what he sees and hears. McLeod is in trouble now, is nearly killed by Mike "Moose" Mazurki, asks old buddy Balsam to help an old pal out, and Balsam obliges,--or does he?

The screws are turned on both guys by Drake, who now holds all the high cards. Balsam was once bigger than McLeod, but McLeod and Drake cut down erstwhile top man Marty, who on the surface seems to bear no ill will toward anybody; and he does seems to love his blowzy, aspiring singer wife, Cloris Leachman, who'd rather her hubby bought her nice things, like a new hat once in a while. Slot machines figure prominently in this episode, which deals with the various ways they can be tampered with.

For all the business about slot machines, which are thrown out windows, taken apart, then replaced by newer, better ones, they're really only a symbol of a larger corruption. As Untouchables episodes go, this one isn't all that violent. It's more of a series of character studies, of how big men are brought down, become middle men, and are then trapped due to what's expected of him by those higher in the food chain. This is a deceptively quiet and cruel episode. In the days when gangs ruled the streets of Chicago, it seems that you just couldn't win. Solid performances all around; and no hamming this time.

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