Perry Mason's lone Halloween episode showcases loads of classic horror talent

The stars of The Exorcist and The Fly were at the center of this mystery!

Yes, even Perry Mason celebrated Halloween. In "The Case of the Dodging Domino," which aired on November 1, El Dia de los Muertos, 1962, saw Perry ushering a bunch of trick-or-treaters into the courtroom. Fitting for the Day of the Dead, one of the kids was dressed as a skeleton. 

Perhaps by coincidence, the episode also happens to feature a gaggle of actors from classic horror movies. Just as it might be a coincidence that this episode happens to be episode six of season six… 6-6! Spooky!

Let's start with Ellen McRae, who plays Mona White, Perry's client. You know her better know as Oscar-winner Ellen Burstyn. This was one of her earliest major television roles. A decade later, she would become one of the most acclaimed actresses in Hollywood, earning Academy Award nods for The Last Picture Show (1971), Same Time, Next Year (1978) and… The Exorcist (1973)! (She would win a trophy for Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore.)

Burstyn's portrayal of the mother of a possessed girl continues to haunt. The Exorcist arguably remains the scariest movie of all time.

David Hedison appears in the Perry Halloween mystery as Damion White, the husband to Mona. The Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea earned his big break in the eerie masterpiece The Fly. The original from 1958. Hedison's character, Andre Delambre, was the man who transformed into the fly after experimenting with teleportation!

That is not it! The episode also features Jeff Morrow, who appeared in several Fifties horror favorites such as The Giant Claw, KronosThe Creature Walks Among Us and This Island Earth.

Likewise, the killer in "The Case of the Dodging Domino" — six-decade-old spoiler alert — was played by Robert H. Harris, who had previously starred as the lead in How to Make a Monster (1958), perhaps his biggest role.

Of course, let's not forget that Perry Mason himself, Raymond Burr, was the only American lead in the 1956 English-language version of the original Godzilla, King of the Monsters!

It all adds up to one treat for fans of horror — and courtroom drama.

Watch Perry Mason on MeTV!

Weekdays at 9 AM
Weeknights at 11:30 PM

*available in most MeTV markets
Are you sure you want to delete this comment?
Close

21 Comments

Jaxter14 32 months ago
As a major fan of horror movies starting with Hitchcock’s Psycho & The Birds, I personally wouldn’t have The Exorcist even near my top 20.
StrayCat 38 months ago
Since commercials make up about 17 minutes of every hour and Perry Mason episodes generally averaged 53 minutes of run time, i can only imagine what was cut out of each episode. Around 10 minutes or so which works out to having about 20% of the show cut. One of these days I'm going to watch the uncut versions of Perry Mason to see what I missed.
Wiseguy 43 months ago
The Simpsons did it one better. The Halloween episode of 2019 was the actual 666th episode*. Also, like Perry Mason, 11 out of 31 Simpsons Halloween episodes have been broadcast in November (including this year's), mostly due to baseball broadcasts in the usual time slot.

*And it really was the 666th broadcast of the series. Some series incorrectly count hour broadcasts as one episode when it is really two episodes. For example, the episode promoted as the 350th of Family Guy was really the 356th episode broadcast. This also includes the made-for-TV but "banned" (so far) episode that has been released on DVD.
Filmnoirfan 43 months ago
Undoubtedly “Godzilla”, “The Fly” and “The Exorcist” are three of my favorites but the Japanese version of the original “Godzilla” with subtitles and sans Burr is much better than the doctored version that includes the Perry Mason star
LarryLeGros 43 months ago
In "The Case of the Dodging Domino," If you look carefully at the Trick or Treaters in the courtroom, one of them is Larry Mondello, Rusty Stevens from Leave It To Beaver.
TLK_1983 43 months ago
Paul Drake himself, William Hopper, played major protagonists in the 1957 films The Deadly Mantis and Ray Harryhausen's 20 Million Miles to Earth. Barbara Hale went on to play a role in the film The Giant Spider Invasion (1975), made famous in an episode of Mystery Science Theater 3000.
teire 43 months ago
Scheduled for MeTV’s morning Perry Mason slot this Friday, Oct. 30. Set DVRs on stun!
Pacificsun teire 43 months ago
Thanks Teire for the heads-up!
Deleted 43 months ago
This comment has been removed.
cperrynaples 43 months ago
Or when George Takai's episode runs, set them for "Stunning" if you get my drift...LOL!!
cperrynaples 43 months ago
I mentioned Ellen in another post, glad to see you gave us her maiden name! For reasons unknown, Hedison was billed as Al and not David in The Fly [BTW, HE was the title character, not Vincent Price!], and he did a lot of work after Voyage! Finally, don't be so quick to dismiss Harris, as he did many roles over the years from the original Goldbergs to Consider Her Ways, perhaps the weirdest Hitchcock Hour!
Load previous comments
Blondie7 cperrynaples 43 months ago
Also played Saul on Bold and Beautiful.
cperrynaples Blondie7 43 months ago
Yes he did that was his last role!
Mike cperrynaples 19 months ago
Belatedly:
Ellen McRae/Burstyn's "maiden name" was Edna Rae Gillooly.
Just so you know ...
Mike cperrynaples 19 months ago
Belatedly (continued):
When Harry Truman was born, two of his older relatives, both of whose names started with 'S', put in claims for the kid's middle name.
Mr. and Mrs. Truman solved the problem by simply using 'S' on the birth certificate.
Stranger Than Truth!
Are you sure you want to delete this comment?