The Untouchables (1959–1963)
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90-Proof Dame 

Nate Kester is a burlesque theatre operator who decides to branch out into the lucrative brandy business. He is producing his own brandy, of very poor quality, and using a fancy French ... See full summary »


Walter Grauman (as Walter E. Grauman)


Eliot Ness (book), Oscar Fraley (book) | 1 more credit »


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Episode cast overview:
Robert Stack ... Eliot Ness
Joanna Barnes ... Marcie McKuen
Steven Geray ... Etienne de Bouverais
Steve Cochran ... Nate Kester
Paul Picerni ... Lee Hobson
Warren Stevens ... Alex Brosak
Gilbert Green Gilbert Green ... Henry Bogar
Harry Dean Stanton ... Moxie (as Dean Stanton)
Nicholas Georgiade ... Enrico Rossi
Steve London ... Jack Rossman
Norman Burton ... Wally Dagan
Walter Winchell ... Narrator (voice)


Nate Kester is a burlesque theatre operator who decides to branch out into the lucrative brandy business. He is producing his own brandy, of very poor quality, and using a fancy French label to try and pass it off as de Bouverais cognac. He realizes that if his scheme is to work, he will have to ensure that the real stuff is unavailable for comparison to the rot gut he will be marketing. He manages to destroy the principal supplier of the real stuff but Etienne de Bouverais himself comes to Chicago to put a new wholesaler in place. When he kills off de Bouverais he finds he has a formidable foe in the form of Madame de Bouverais, the former Marcie McKuen, at one time a dancer in his theatre. Eliot Ness tries to convince her to cooperate with the Feds to bring Kester down but she has her own plans to get even her former employer. Written by garykmcd

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Action | Crime | Drama







Release Date:

8 June 1961 (USA) See more »

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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User Reviews

Once a dame, always a dame?
2 March 2016 | by MartinHaferSee all my reviews

Apart from some logical inconsistencies, this is a pretty good episode of "The Untouchables" and, as usual, Steve Cochran stars as a real dirt-bag.

When the show begins, the crazed hood, Kester (Cochran) is announcing to an unhappy man that he's going to be buying his Brandy*. However, the stuff is just crappy liquor stuck into counterfeit bottles. It's not the good stuff, de Bouverais, but his usual swill. Kester's plan (not a very logical one) is to destroy all the de Bouverais** in the city and then replace it with his crap. A bit later, the man responsible for the de Bourverais, the Marquis de Bouverais, visits America and Kester's plan is to force him to stop selling it to anyone in the States...and he plan on using the man's wife, the Marquise. How? Because before marrying this rich Frenchman, she was a stripper who worked for Kester...and he threatens to blow her cover.

As for Ness, he assumes when Kester is meeting with the Marquise it is because she is just cheap dame...once a cheap dame, always a cheap he knows of her past. But is she on the level? Could she actually be a decent woman? And, more importantly, can Ness count on her help?

As I already mentioned, this one is enjoyable because Cochran played such florid and nasty baddies on this show. The plot is also somewhat interesting, though it makes little sense at times.

*Although they call it Brandy throughout the episode, the crates say 'Cognac'--a very high quality version of Brandy from the Cognac region of France. It usually is more expensive and more prized than Brandy.

**The logic behind this really is screwy. Kester destroys cases and cases and cases of the stuff instead of stealing and selling it. He also then later says he needs SOME de Bouverais as a base for the swill he's making. Why not use the de Bouverais instead of destroying it?! It didn't seem like this was very well thought out by the writer.

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