Raymond Burr Centennial

21 May

Raymond Burr would have turned 100 today, May 21, 2017. He’s most famous for three roles, two on television and one in the movies. On television he first starred in “Perry Mason,” portraying the title character, a criminal defense attorney who won almost every case he took. The series premiered on CBS in 1957 (sixty years ago this fall) and ran for nine seasons (until 1966). He then returned to the role in a run of 26 TV movies that began in 1985 and continued until his death in 1993. (The final film aired after his death.)

Perry Mason 1957:

Perry Mason 1985:

Burr’s second starring role on television came a year after the “Perry Mason” series ended when he starred in a pilot film called IRONSIDE that ran as a TV movie in the spring of 1967 before the regular series started that fall (fifty years ago this September). In it, Burr played Chief Robert Ironside, a San Francisco police detective disabled by a sniper’s bullet who then operates from a wheelchair and, assisted by two rookie officers (one male, one female) and a former delinquent who becomes, in essence, his man-servant, undertakes special assignments. The series ran for eight seasons, ending in 1975.

Before his television stardom, Burr played a reporter who visits Japan during an attack by the title creature in the sci-fi-monster film, GODZILLA, KING OF THE MONSTERS (1956). Burr’s scenes were filmed by director Terry Morse in the U.S. in early 1956 using local Asian-American actors in support and edited into Ishiro Honda’s existing Japanese film, GOJIRA (1954), with new narration by Burr used over scenes from the original, some retaining their Japanese language soundtrack. (Other scenes from the original were dubbed into English.) When I first saw the film on the big screen at Japan Society in 1979 after not having seen it since childhood, Burr’s character drew a big laugh from the audience when he identified himself in the opening narration as “Steve Martin.” By then actor-comedian Steve Martin had made a big splash on “Saturday Night Live” and in his big-screen debut that year, THE JERK. When Burr reprised the Martin role 29 years after the original in another re-edited Godzilla film, released in the U.S. as GODZILLA 1985, they wisely altered his character name to “Steven Martin.”

When I first saw GODZILLA on TV as a child, I was already familiar with Burr from “Perry Mason.” A year after the film had first come out, “Perry Mason” had premiered on CBS and become a huge ratings hit, so by the time GODZILLA was first shown on TV, Burr was a household name, compelling viewers to tune in to what would become the very first Japanese film most Baby Boomers were exposed to. For many of us, it opened a window into Japanese pop culture and formed the seed of a lifetime obsession.

PERRY MASON

I must have been about five years old when I first saw GODZILLA and since I was already familiar with Burr by that point, I must have already been watching “Perry Mason” at that age. I certainly remember watching the show every Saturday night with my family at 7:30 PM. What was it about “Perry Mason,” an hour-long legal drama, that kept a five-year-old’s attention?  To answer that question, I bought a Perry Mason Season One box set in January 2014 and watched a couple of episodes then (the first time I’d seen the show in over 50 years) and wrote about my reaction in my blog post that month, “Rediscovering Classic TV.” Here’s what I wrote then:

In re-watching it now, I can see why it held our interest. It’s remarkably dramatic and straightforward, with every scene conveying key information and moving the plot forward as concisely as possible and with great closeups. Burr, in particular, is quite expressive and draws us in, no matter how far-fetched the proceedings get. (Has there ever been a trial anywhere in the world where the actual guilty party arises from the spectators and blurts out a surprise confession?) In “The Case of the Cautious Coquette,” the story begins with a model being blackmailed by her estranged husband as she embarks on a new relationship and she provides the emotional core of the story even as the plot twists keep spiraling. The camera regularly cuts back to closeups of her as she confronts various traumas and tragedies and we hang on because her story (and her face) are so compelling.

“The Case of the Cautious Coquette”:

I’ve since watched all of Season One and can add to the above by pointing out how Burr had a way of establishing, via reaction shots, who we should trust and who we shouldn’t. Despite the existence of plot points that would have gone over the head of a five-year-old, Burr made a point of protecting the underdog, usually the wrongly-accused suspect, and signaling to the viewer which other characters needed to be watched carefully. These are things a kid can easily identify with. (And they don’t fade with adulthood.) I thoroughly enjoyed these episodes (the bulk of them seen this year) and hope to acquire more box sets of the series. It’s become one of my all-time favorite American TV series. The writing, acting and directing are consistently good, at least in Season One, a remarkable achievement when one considers that this was the first American hour-long dramatic series with a regular cast that wasn’t a western.

As Mason, Burr could be charming, assuring and persuasive at times. He could grin and smile with the best of them, as seen in this exchange with a witness in “The Case of the Prodigal Parent”:

“That will be all, Miss Winslow,” he says, although Miss Jane isn’t buying any of it:

(Yes, that’s Nancy Kulp, who later played Miss Jane Hathaway on “The Beverly Hillbillies.”)

But he could be brusque and impatient at other times and when a client was lying to him, he made it clear in no uncertain terms that he wasn’t going to tolerate it. Here he is dressing down poor Angie Dickinson (“Police Woman” herself) when she lies to protect her misbegotten brother in “The Case of the One-Eyed Witness”:

Before Perry Mason

If Burr had done nothing but “Perry Mason” and “Godzilla,” I would still be paying tribute to him. However, he had a rich decade-long film career preceding “Perry Mason,” where he played villains in crime dramas, westerns and costume pictures, making as many as nine movies a year from 1946 to 1957. He was much heavier, for at least part of this period, and quite imposing. He could be extremely menacing, playing gangsters, outlaws, and corrupt courtiers in medieval Europe and Arabia. There was a sadistic edge to many of his portrayals and he seemed to delight in inflicting pain, such as when he tortures poor Robert Mitchum in HIS KIND OF WOMAN (1951) or impulsively throws a flaming brazier at his girlfriend in RAW DEAL (1948).

I first began discovering these movies while watching late-night television in college and attending revival theaters in Manhattan. What a revelation it was to see Burr in such films as DESPERATE, THE WHIP HAND, REAR WINDOW, HORIZONS WEST, ADVENTURES OF DON JUAN, TARZAN AND THE SHE-DEVIL, COUNT THREE AND PRAY and GREAT DAY IN THE MORNING, among many others.

A PLACE IN THE SUN

Even when he was on the side of the law, Burr was no less frightening and intimidating. In A PLACE IN THE SUN (1951), directed by George Stevens, he plays the prosecutor who tries George Eastman (Montgomery Clift), a young factory manager, on a charge of murder in the first degree after Alice Tripp (Shelley Winters), a worker under his supervision, has drowned in a lake while on a boating trip with him. It’s already been established that Eastman wanted to be rid of Alice (Shelley Winters), whom he’d gotten pregnant, because she was threatening to reveal their relationship and jeopardize his budding romance with a local socialite (Elizabeth Taylor). He clearly took her out in the boat on a deserted lake with the intention of causing her to drown. There is an emotionally charged moment and she falls out of the boat of her own accord, but he does nothing to save her. Even though the audience’s sympathies are with the poor boy, who’d gotten a leg up thanks to a rich uncle, and his rich girlfriend, it was a simple matter of justice to me. Whether he actually caused her to fall or not, the intention was there and I felt he deserved to be found guilty. Maybe the death sentence was too harsh given the tricky nature of the way the victim died, but I can’t fault Burr’s relentless prosecutor at all. It’s all very clear to him and he never wavers in his conviction that Clift is guilty and must go to the chair. He puts on quite a show in the courtroom, going so far as to reenact the murder with a boat brought in for the demonstration. Interestingly, Burr’s Frank Marlowe is that rare prosecutor who would have made mincemeat out of Perry Mason. He’s the film’s chief antagonist and even though he’s on the side of the law, the portrayal still seems to me to belong squarely in Burr’s villain period. His dramatic flourish makes the character appear like some kind of malevolent entity, which didn’t seem at all inappropriate to me given the severity of the crime.

I remember being quite stunned by Burr’s burst of rage in the courtroom the first time I saw this film. I’d never seen anything like it from this actor before.

PITFALL

There are a number of faces in Burr’s rogues’ gallery worth citing, but among the films I re-watched for this piece, the scariest and most threatening was his private eye Mac MacDonald in Andre de Toth’s PITFALL (1948).

In the film, Mac does odd jobs for insurance investigator John Forbes (Dick Powell) and when the time comes to repossess items bought with embezzled money for Mona Stevens (Lizabeth Scott), a struggling model, by a boyfriend who is now in prison, Mac becomes infatuated and obsessed with her. Forbes visits her and becomes drawn to her as well and she to him, especially when he promises to intervene and prevent the hulking Mac from pestering her anymore. Mac, on the other hand, thinks he can force Mona’s affections by sheer persistence and becomes every woman’s stalker nightmare. He’s an ex-cop and when Mona threatens to go to the police, he calls his buddies on the force and insures that his side of the story will prevail and not hers. Mac follows Forbes when he goes to visit Mona and is always around, lurking, watching. He even beats up Forbes at one point and Forbes refuses to press charges because Mac will then reveal that the married Forbes has been seeing Mona. It soon becomes clear that Mona has only one way to be free of Mac, even if it means losing her freedom in the process.

REAR WINDOW

Burr is included in the book, The Heavies (Praeger, 1967), by Ian and Elisabeth Cameron, who say this about him:

Back in 1956, Raymond Burr was a rather busy film heavy: in a decade in movies he had made up to eight films per year. In those days, he was a fat gentleman and filled the fat heavy niche for most of the period between the death of Laird Cregar and the appearance of Victor Buono. But Burr, even when he was being evil, was the most likeable of the three. He had a quality of sadness, with mournful eyes set in weighty features.

The Camerons go on to single out Burr’s performance in Alfred Hitchcock’s REAR WINDOW, where he played the neighbor, Lars Thorwald, whom photographer James Stewart, spying with his telephoto lens from his Greenwich Village courtyard window while laid up with a broken leg, comes to suspect of murder when he notices the disappearance of Thorwald’s invalid wife and Thorwald’s subsequent tinkering in the garden. Here’s what the Camerons say, relying largely on a quote from Robin Wood:

His presence was brilliantly used by Hitchcock in REAR WINDOW to add a dimension to the film’s morality. ‘The poor man,’ as Hitchcock called him, kills his nagging invalid wife and chops up the body. Thorwald is not a simple villain and, as Robin Wood pointed out, the effect of the final confrontation with the hero ‘is made more, not less, frightening by the fact that Thorwald is presented, not as a monster, but as a human being, half terrible, half perplexed and pitiable. If he were merely a monster we could reject him quite comfortably; because our reaction to him is mixed, we have to accept him as representative of potentialities in Jefferies (the hero) and, by extension, in all of us.’

I’m not sure I had quite the same reaction to Thorwald when I saw the film. Truth to tell, I found him pretty monstrous.

Other Roles (1950-56)

Another great thing about Burr’s villain period is seeing him dressed in ways we never would have seen on “Perry Mason.” Here he is as Pete Ritchie, a flamboyant drug dealer based in Mexico, in BORDERLINE (1950) standing between his seated flunky (Don Diamond) and his new moll (Claire Trevor), who is actually an undercover policewoman from L.A.:

And as Minister Bragadin in CASANOVA’S BIG NIGHT (1954), seen on the right, alongside John Carradine and Arnold Moss:

And here, as “Grand Vizier Boreg al Buzzar,” he joins another future CBS  TV star, Lucille Ball, in THE MAGIC CARPET (1951), not a film Ball was eager to do:

As greedy hunter Vargo (seen on the right) in TARZAN AND THE SHE-DEVIL (1953), with Tom Conway and Monique van Vooren:

And as a jungle plantation manager having an affair with the boss’s wife before he somehow turns into a were-gorilla in BRIDE OF THE GORILLA (1951), seen here with Barbara Payton:

He made quite a few westerns and he’s especially crafty in THE BRASS LEGEND (1956), made a year before “Perry Mason” and pitting him against Hugh O’Brian, then the star of TV’s “Wyatt Earp.” Burr plays an outlaw being held by lawman O’Brian and he makes it very clear he has no intention of remaining a prisoner. He threatens to get out and he does, leading to quite a suspenseful chain of events.

He’s a standard-issue movie gangster in L.A. in Joseph Losey’s M (1951), an intriguing remake of the Fritz Lang German classic from 1931, but he plays his character, Pottsy, with a distinctive rasp to his voice that sounds so different from his normal silky voice that I initially wondered if he’d been post-dubbed by someone else. In the film he is given the assignment by L.A. crime boss Martin Gabel to coordinate the city’s street gangs to help in the search for a serial killer at large who’s targeting little girls. In one scene, he’s seated in a barbershop chair dispensing money and marching orders to five youthful gang leaders. When he’s done, he gets up to walk out but first stops to spin the barber chair around as if it’s some kind of threatening gesture. The film’s fanciful view of the L.A. underworld seems to draw more from Damon Runyon stories than from the actual L.A. Mafia family headed by Jack Dragna in 1951, which tends to undercut the film’s shift in its final sequence to an anti-lynching social tract. Through it all, Burr is pretty amusing.

I watched six postwar pre-Perry Mason movies featuring Burr for this piece, four for the first time. There are two I especially wish to single out.

PLEASE MURDER ME!

One of the great discoveries I made while researching this piece was the 1956 crime drama, PLEASE MURDER ME!, which is clearly the missing link between Burr’s villain period and “Perry Mason.” In the film, Burr plays Craig Carlson, a criminal defense attorney who defends his lover in court after she shot her husband (Dick Foran), Carlson’s best friend, claiming self-defense. Burr fully expects to marry the woman, Myra Leeds (Angela Lansbury), after she’s acquitted but instead she plans to run off with a struggling artist (Lamont Johnson) she was seeing behind the backs of both her husband and Carlson. The heartbroken Carlson devises a strategy of revenge that will see justice done. Burr’s character is not strictly a villain here, although there are moments where we’re not sure what he has in mind. He befriends the young artist, who’s unaware of Myra’s double-dealing, and clearly feels sympathy for him, yet when he invites him and Myra to dinner to wish them well on their trip, we’re not entirely sure that he’s not including the young man in his revenge scheme. (He’s not.) Burr plays it close to the vest the whole time, which completely unnerves Myra. Yet the betrayal has clearly hurt him. This is what it would be like if Perry Mason had fallen in love, been dumped and shown some raw human emotion, something we saw a lot of in the TV show, but not from Mason. How would Mason’s courtroom demeanor change if he were in love with his client? This film gave us a chance to imagine it. And it’s also virtually the only time Burr’s client is both guilty and acquitted. That never happened on the TV show. The film has an extremely clever script and I found it amusing for the way it pairs two future TV sleuths. Lansbury would, of course, go on to play mystery-solving Jessica Fletcher on the long-running “Murder, She Wrote” (1984-1996).

PLEASE MURDER ME! is available on Amazon Prime, as are PITFALL, RAW DEAL, and BORDERLINE.

CRIME OF PASSION

CRIME OF PASSION (1957) is another film marking Burr’s transition and an equally pleasant surprise from my Burr viewing for this piece. He plays L.A. Police Inspector Tony Pope, the boss of Sterling Hayden, whose wife, Barbara Stanwyck, wants bigger things for her husband so she cultivates a relationship with Burr and his wife, played by Fay Wray, in the hopes of getting Hayden a promotion. This leads to a brief affair between Burr and Stanwyck that ends badly. (Burr suffers a very similar fate to the one he suffered in PLEASE MURDER ME! at the hands of another powerhouse female star.) Burr is not quite a villain, although he cheats on his wife with his subordinate’s wife. He’s very soft-spoken in this one and recognizes Stanwyck’s ambitions early on and monitors them. It’s only when he decides to do the right thing that he suffers.

There’s one scene midway through that looks forward to “Perry Mason.” In it, Burr interrogates four officers in his office after Hayden has punched out his partner, Royal Dano, in response to gossip supposedly generated by Dano’s wife. Burr cross-examines the men, particularly Dano, behaving more like a prosecutor than the defense attorney he’d be playing later that year. His Pope is a bureaucratic stickler on the use of words (“What do you mean he ‘busted’ in?”) and the perception of movements (whether Dano was seeming to go for his gun when Hayden walked in) and the upshot is that the partners are both transferred to different jobs in lieu of a departmental hearing. Burr’s got gray in his hair and looks very different from the way he’d look as Mason just a few months later.

Burr is not technically a villain in either PLEASE MURDER ME! or CRIME OF PASSION, but in both films he’s hiding something. We know what it is in CRIME OF PASSION, but we’re kept waiting until the end of PLEASE MURDER ME! to find out what it is. At some point in each film, he admits his failings and clearly shows remorse. Quite a change from his earlier heavy roles and not a bad way to ease into Perry Mason, where he’s a consistent good guy and unwavering throughout, although my notes for at least one Season One episode, “The Case of the Restless Redhead,” read: “Mason uses some unscrupulous tactics here.” I don’t know how often that happened.

The casts of both PLEASE MURDER ME! and CRIME OF PASSION included a number of supporting actors who would later turn up in guest spots in “Perry Mason,” four in the former film and eight in the latter.

GODZILLA

Steve Martin in GODZILLA, KING OF THE MONSTERS (1956) was Burr’s first leading role in a heroic part and even though he’s in a handful of scenes inserted into a Japanese film, he clearly makes us believe he’s in Japan and is invested in the action. His character is there when the giant dinosaur, awakened by a U.S. nuclear bomb test, is first discovered on a fishing island off the eastern coast of Japan and he follows the progress of the government investigation into the phenomenon, with footage of him inserted into the public hearing on the subject and various other meetings. Martin’s encounters with Dr. Yamane (Takashi Shimura) and his daughter Emiko (Momoko Kochi), the lead characters in GOJIRA, are staged with doubles for the actors standing with their backs to the camera with English dialogue dubbed in for their characters. It’s none-too-convincing but Burr does his best to enhance the illusion  of actually meeting and talking with them. Most importantly, Martin is on the scene at his company’s office in Tokyo during the rampage by Godzilla and he tape records an eyewitness report, continuing to record as the monster bears down on his location, stopping only when the structure collapses on him. (It’s a safe bet the recording didn’t survive.) As a child, I found it shocking to see the unflappable presence we knew as Perry Mason placed in such a vulnerable position and laid low while covering a story.

“This is it, George. Steve Martin signing off from Tokyo, Japan.”

While one can argue that the re-edited version dilutes the original film’s anti-nuclear message and pointed criticism of America’s bomb tests, I’ve always found that it retains the film’s emotional power and that Burr’s character shows real compassion and respect for the people of Japan whom he encounters just a decade after the end of World War II. (Burr was a war veteran himself, having served in the U.S. Navy, and was wounded in the Battle of Okinawa.) As stated, Burr’s presence conceivably got more viewers to sample a foreign monster movie than might otherwise have tuned in. Its success enabled the import of more Japanese monster movies, even without Americans being inserted, as was the case with the next one, RODAN (1957), which aired in 1959 without significant editing.

While I urge everyone to see the original GOJIRA, a powerful work of art in its own right, we should not forget the debt that fans of all versions of Godzilla owe to Burr and the revised American version.

IRONSIDE

A year after the black-and-white “Perry Mason” ended, Burr plunged into a new series, his first TV work in color, “Ironside,” in which he played the wheelchair-bound police detective Robert Ironside, who commands a three-person team which gets special assignments from the San Francisco Police Department. I never watched “Ironside” when it was on, so I picked up a box set containing the TV movie pilot and the first six episodes. On the basis of these, I find the character of Ironside to be far more irritable and dyspeptic than Perry Mason and one who snarls at his three subordinates as well as his superiors in the department. He has the kind of human vices that Mason never had, including being a heavy drinker and betting on horses. His favorite epithet is “flaming,” which he appends as a negative adjective to all sorts of objects, evidently a substitute for something much stronger.

However, he’s also cool-headed and confident in the face of danger, as in the best episode of the six I watched, #6: “An Inside Job,” in which two escaped prisoners (John Saxon, Don Stroud) hold him and Officer Whitfield (Barbara Anderson) hostage in Ironside’s loft while trying to negotiate a way out of S.F.P.D. headquarters. Ironside makes it clear that the two will never get away with it and even as he tries to find a way to get them out of his loft (a converted storeroom in the Police HQ building) and into the main lobby, ostensibly to help them escape but actually to set up a trap for them, he remains defiant and unbowed.

Although Burr played a detective in this series, he often acted like Perry Mason. In the second episode, “The Leaf in the Forest,” he interrogates Barbara Barrie, playing the wife of a murder suspect (John Larch), and cross examines her as if she were on the stand, wearing her down until she finally contradicts her husband’s alibi, just as he walks in.

PERRY MASON RETURNS

Burr returned to the Perry Mason role in the TV movie, “Perry Mason Returns” (1985), which also reunited him with his longtime secretary on the original series, Della Street, again played by Barbara Hale. Joining them is the private detective Paul Drake Jr., son of Paul Drake, Mason’s private eye in the original series who was played by William Hopper, long deceased by the time this TV movie was made. The character is played by William Katt, the real-life son of Barbara Hale and her husband of 46 years, actor Bill Williams.

As I was researching this piece, I realized that I’d never seen any of the Perry Mason TV movies, so I went out and bought a used DVD containing the first two movies, “Perry Mason Returns” (1985) and “The Case of the Notorious Nun” (1986), and watched both. Each has a plot line that would have worked quite well in a one-hour format and didn’t need to be padded out by action scenes featuring Paul Drake Jr. in car chases, foot chases, fistfights and shootouts. The effect of this padding is to minimize Mason’s role in the proceedings and dilute some of the dramatic impact of the final courtroom showdowns. Also, the movies have a dark, grainy, cloudy look to them as if they were low-budget Canadian thrillers from the 1980s, which, in fact, they essentially are, having been shot in the 1980s on low budgets in Toronto, which stands in for an unnamed city that clearly isn’t the L.A. of the original series.

Also, it was rather jarring to see and hear Burr talk and move much more slowly and with a much deeper voice. Hale has a deeper voice also, but nonetheless remains her perky self. In “Perry Mason Returns,” the big twist is that Della Street is the murder suspect believed to have killed her corporate boss (Patrick O’Neal) for the money he left her in his will. Mason, now an appellate court judge, steps down from the bench to take the case of his former secretary. It’s quite an emotional reunion.

When the actual killer learns that Mason is on the case, he complains to the higher-up who hired him, lamenting that he wasn’t told Della’s history and who she’d worked for before. He certainly would have had second thoughts about taking the job. Both movies revolve around conspiracies in which the killer is hired by someone to do the job. I don’t recall this happening in any of the original Perry Mason episodes I’ve seen.

Interestingly, the same year Burr returned as Perry Mason, he also reprised his role of “Steven Martin” in GODZILLA 1985.

And in 1993, the year he died and the last year he made a Perry Mason TV movie, he also appeared in an Ironside reunion TV movie, “The Return of Ironside,” which I haven’t seen and had not heard of until I researched Burr’s filmography.

Burr made only a handful of movies after his initial tenure on “Perry Mason.” Most of his non-Perry Mason acting work after “Ironside” was in TV movies, miniseries and guest appearances in the 1970s and ’80s. Aside from the “Ironside” episodes and first two Perry Mason TV movies seen in preparation for this piece, the only acting work of his I’ve seen after the first Perry Mason series ended is found in two movies, GODZILLA 1985 and P.J. (1968), a private eye movie starring George Peppard that I saw on TV 45 years ago. After reading reviews of P.J. on IMDB I wish I could see the original theatrical version, which was cleaned up considerably for its TV showings.

However, the first order of business is to acquire more box sets of the original “Perry Mason.”

ADDENDUM: Five days after posting this piece, I went to my local video store’s closing sale and purchased a box set of all nine seasons of the “Perry Mason” series. What a find!

 

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10 Responses to “Raymond Burr Centennial”

  1. Ben Masters May 21, 2017 at 12:02 PM #

    “However, the first order of business is to acquire more box sets of the original “Perry Mason.””

    I have seven seasons’ worth of that on DVD in the volume releases, and they’ve been more than worth the money!

  2. realthog May 21, 2017 at 12:09 PM #

    What a superb piece! Many thanks for it. Might I reblog it on Noirish, please?

  3. Bob Lindstrom May 21, 2017 at 12:15 PM #

    Excellent article, Brian. Thanks to the local MeTV carrier, I’ve been watching all the Masons over the past few months. Fascinating for the core cast’s chemistry and also for the gallery of 50s and 60s actors who appear. A bit of trivia: Ironside was not Burr’s first color TV work. A single episode of Mason was shot in color (which I discovered just a few days ago when it aired). It’s a delightful shock to see that oh-so-familiar B/W world in an unfamiliar way.

    • briandanacamp May 22, 2017 at 6:09 AM #

      Wow, I’d love to see that color episode. Which episode was it? And is it included in any of the box sets? And thanks for the kind words.

      • Ben Masters May 22, 2017 at 7:45 AM #

        It is– it’s in the Perry Mason 50th Anniversary release, and also on the ninth-season, second-volume release, IIRC.

  4. realthog May 22, 2017 at 10:13 AM #

    Reblogged this on Noirish and commented:
    ** When I read this stupendous (and very well illustrated) essay on one of the greats of the noirish screen, I hesitated about one millisecond before asking blogger Brian Camp if I might reblog it here. He kindly assented, so . . .

    • Håkan June 8, 2017 at 9:00 AM #

      Great reading!

      You didn’t mention the series Burr did after Ironside? Kingston: Confidential (1976-77), where he played a reporter and media magnate in 14 episodes.
      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kingston:_Confidential

      • briandanacamp June 8, 2017 at 3:41 PM #

        I completely forgot about that series and it never jumped out at me the many times I consulted his filmography on IMDB. Never seen an episode. Is it worth seeking out? Is it even POSSIBLE to find? Thanks.

      • Håkan June 9, 2017 at 2:21 AM #

        Almost 40 years since I saw it (on Swedish television), so I don’t remember much about it. From what I know it has never been released on DVD.

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