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The Case of the Stuttering Bishop (1937)

Approved | | Crime, Drama, Mystery | 8 June 1937 (USA)
An improbable stuttering bishop from Australia asks for Perry's help in proving the identity of the legitimate heir to a millionaire.


William Clemens


Kenneth Gamet (screenplay), Don Ryan (screenplay) | 1 more credit »


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Donald Woods ... Perry Mason
Ann Dvorak ... Della Street
Anne Nagel ... Janice Alma Brownley
Linda Perry ... Janice Seaton
Craig Reynolds ... Gordon Bixler
Gordon Oliver ... Philip Brownley
Joseph Crehan ... Paul Drake
Helen MacKellar ... Stella Kenwood (as Helen McKellar)
Edward McWade ... Bishop William Mallory
Tom Kennedy ... Jim Magooney
Mira McKinney ... Ida Gilbert
Frank Faylen ... Charlie Downs
Douglas Wood Douglas Wood ... Renald C. Brownley
Veda Ann Borg ... Gladys
George Lloyd ... Peter Sacks


A Bishop from Australia comes to Perry to ask him to take a case of a woman wrongly accused of manslaughter 22 years before. The case would involve the wealthy Mr. Brownley and the fact that his alleged granddaughter may be an imposter. With that, the Bishop leaves and is clubbed in his hotel room. Soon after, he leaves on a boat and Perry meets the woman - Ida Gilbert. Perry goes to see Mr. Brownley, but gets nowhere. Later that night, Brownley is to meet Ida, but he is shot by a woman who drops Ida's gun. Ida is arrested for the murder of Mr. Brownley and Perry gets involved. Written by Tony Fontana <tony.fontana@spacebbs.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Crime | Drama | Mystery


Approved | See all certifications »






Release Date:

8 June 1937 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Clue Club #10: The Case of the Stuttering Bishop See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?


The last name of District Attorney Hamilton Burger, played by Charles C. Wilson, is pronounced with a soft G as opposed to the hard G that was used during the long-running TV series. See more »


Paul Drake: [Trying the door] It's locked!
[He starts looking through his skeleton keys]
Paul Drake: Which will it be? Conscience or curiosity?
Perry Mason: Curiosity.
See more »


Follows The Case of the Black Cat (1936) See more »


When Irish Eyes Are Smiling
(1912) (uncredited)
Music by Ernest Ball
Lyrics by Chauncey Olcott and George Graff
Sung a cappella with a phony Irish brogue by Donald Woods
See more »

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User Reviews

Perry Mason 6: Dull, Confusing, but Solid
5 March 2009 | by profh-1See all my reviews

You can often tell when a studio is losing interest in a film series when they start replacing the entire cast. In this instance, they did it twice in 2 films-- and by the time of THE CASE OF THE STUTTERING BISHOP, we'd not only seen 3 Perry Masons in 6 films, but 5 different Della Streets! Donald Woods does his 2nd PM film, having played one of the suspects in ...THE CURIOUS BRIDE, while William Clemens directs his 2nd PM film, having already done the relatively sober ...VELVET CLAWS. Clemens would go onto quite a few series films, including a Torchy Blane, 4 Nancy Drews, a Dead Ends Kids, a Philo Vance, and 3 Falcons. There's nothing especially flashy or stylish about this film, and it starts out very confusing, but it is a solid mystery film, and gets better as it goes.

For example, you have the boastful house detective who Perry winds up hiring part-time, and as the story goes on he proves to be genuinely helpful, rather than "merely" comic relief. It seems the murder takes forever to happen in this one, but once it does, the story FINALLY kicks into gear, and the courtroom sequence at the end is probably the BEST in all 6 films. Unlike when Perry rattled off confusing info nobody but HE knew in the previous installment, the quick stream of witness testimonies actually help to pull all the threads of the story together neatly. And at last, there's the patented "blurted out confession" seen in so many PM stories-- only in this case, NOT from the person being grilled on the stand.

It's been said that sometimes casting actors very accurate to novels can lead to dull films. Some of the most popular versions of characters are quite unlike their literary sources-- good examples being Sean Connery's JAMES BOND and Stacy Keach's MIKE HAMMER. In this case, I find myself wishing Warren William had done more films like this one-- his version of Perry might not be thought of as so much of a joke then.

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