M Squad (1957–1960)
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The Second Best Killer 

Herbie Ryder gains fame for stopping a bank robbery. After a media interview he is shot and killed. Ballinger is brought in in the belief that organized crime has ordered the hit.


Robert B. Sinclair


Stuart Jerome (story & teleplay), Maxwell Shane (story)


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Episode complete credited cast:
Lee Marvin ... Detective Lt. Frank Ballinger
Paul Newlan ... Police Capt. Grey
Ray Stricklyn ... Vern Sawder
Penny Santon Penny Santon ... Mrs. Ryder
Aline Towne ... Gloria Stark
Ralph Votrian ... Herbie Ryder (as Ralph Joseph Votrian)
Mari Lynn Mari Lynn ... Eva
Carl MacIntire Carl MacIntire ... TV Interviewer (as Carl McIntire)
Dick Wilson ... Moe Norton


Herbie Ryder gains fame for stopping a bank robbery. After a media interview he is shot and killed. Ballinger is brought in in the belief that organized crime has ordered the hit.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Crime | Drama | Thriller


Not Rated






Release Date:

15 January 1960 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Latimer Productions See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


| (DVD)

Sound Mix:

Mono (Westrex Recording System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »

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User Reviews

Everything I do I screw up!
6 October 2014 | by kapelusznik18See all my reviews

****SPOILERS**** A born screw-up Vern Sawder, Ray Stricklyn, just about had it when his good friend the nerdy Herbie Ryder,Ralph Vatrion,made headlines in having notorious bank robber Pinky Hyden put out of commission, by being shot dead by the police in a shoot-out, in him identifying or fingering him after his latest bank robbery. Sick and tired as well as jealous of all the good publicity Herbie was getting Vern later shot him dead in a dark alley, while coming home from work, making it look like Pinky's mob associates did him in.

Still not getting the results he yearned for in trying to get in good with the late Herbie's former girl-friend Gloria, Aline Towne, Vern feeling he's now invincible to the law murdered her as well for throwing him, when he was trying to make it with her, out of her apartment. It's Let. Det. Frank Ballinger, Lee Marvin, who sees through Vern's "He's such a nice boy" front and starts to investigate his wear abouts during the time of Herbie & Gloria's murders: Herbie who was murdered outright and Gloria who's death was made to look like a suicide.

***SPOILERS*** It wasn't long before Ballinger caught Vern red handed in trying to set his apartment building on fire and then, by being a good citizen, calling the fire department to come to it's, and the people in it, rescue. Handcuffed to a pole with the boiler, that Vern sabotaged, about to blow Ballinger risked his life to save the not worth saving Vern Sawder which by Ballinger succeeding,in putting the fire out, had him convicted of a double murder and sent to the Illinois state electric chair.

P.S This "Squad" episode was a lot like the Arnold Schuster murder back in Brooklyn in 1952. That's when Schuster after enjoying his brief 15 minutes of fame was gunned down in the street for fingering bank robber Willie Sutton the police. A murder twas sanctioned by the local mob, that Sutton wasn't even a member of, in it's violent dislike of Schuster being a squealer or police informer that had him rubbed out for doing it.

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