Perry Mason (1957–1966)
6 user

The Case of the Crying Cherub 

When a Matisse painting is stolen from a museum, the finger is pointed at an assistant in the museum whose boyfriend is an artist as well as his estranged wife. The wife tries to blackmail the museum owner but is murdered after a fight.


William D. Russell


Erle Stanley Gardner (characters created by), Jonathan Latimer




Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Raymond Burr ... Perry Mason
Barbara Hale ... Della Street
William Hopper ... Paul Drake
Ray Collins ... Police Lt. Arthur Tragg
Joe Maross ... David Lambert
Tom Drake ... Richard Harkens
Abraham Sofaer ... Sylvester Robey
Mala Powers ... June Sinclair
David Lewis ... Deputy D.A. Mark Hanson
Kathryn Givney ... Amelia Harkens
Carmen Phillips ... Liza Carson Lambert
Tom McBride Tom McBride ... Thomas Clark - Museum Guard (as Thomas McBride)
Richard Gaines ... Judge
Isabel Randolph ... Mrs. Vandercord
Elvia Allman ... Mrs. Forbes


At the Harkens Gallery, Sylvester Robey wishes to see Richard Harkens about a Matisse hanging in the gallery. Amelia Harkens, Richard's mother who owns the gallery, is incensed to see that the painting is a forgery and blames Richard's assistant, June Sinclair, and master copyist David Lambert of collusion. June and David are in love and ask Perry Mason to intercede with Amelia. David quarrels with his wife Liza, who paints cherubs, over their impending divorce and whether he should also paint commercially viable cherubs. Liza tries to extort money from Amelia in return for the genuine Matisse. Later, June confronts Liza and they struggle until Liza pulls a gun and forces June to retreat. As she leaves, June hears Liza scream and shots fired. She finds Liza dead, calls Perry Mason and flees the scene. Perry discovers Liza's body, the police arrive, and Perry clams up until he can talk to his client. June is arrested and Perry has to go to work. Written by richardann

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Crime | Drama | Mystery








Release Date:

9 April 1960 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (Westrex Recording System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


First show that aired after William Talman's dismissal on moral charges. Also new opening scene with Perry holding a file and the camera freezes and the co-stars are listed. See more »


When cross-examining Mrs. Harkens, Perry Mason refers to Liza Carson Lambert as 'Lisa', not 'Liza'. See more »


[first lines]
June Sinclair: And this is our prized Matisse, an example of the master's middle period. Notice how he handles his light by the use of pure tone.
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User Reviews

Courtoom scenes save this episode from disaster
1 June 2012 | by kfo9494See all my reviews

This episode is a classic mystery story that involves a troubled marriage, a new love and a valuable item that has been stolen. Even though it is a basis for many mysteries this episode ends differently than a regular love triangle show.

The show centers around a Matisse painting that hangs in the Harkins Gallery. The director, Richard Hawkins, finds out that the painting hanging in the gallery is a fake. It appears that someone has stolen the real painting and replaced it with a fake.

When the owner, Amelia Harkins who is a rough old bird, hears about the painting she becomes aware of one employee, June Sinclair, has been seeing a married man named David Lambert. Seems that Mr Lambert use to be an artist that painted copies of original painting for museums.

David Lambert is married to a regular vamp Lisa Carson Lambert. They have been going through a divorce but Lisa refuses to sign the papers so the divorce can become final.

When Lisa overhears about the painting, she calls Amelia Harkins claiming David stole the painting but can get it back if the money is paid. When June hears this she confronts Lisa and they get into a argument and shake-fest (they shake each other). Lisa pulls a gun and June leaves.

Right outside the door June hears Lisa yelling to someone and then shots are fired. Lisa Carson-Lambert ends up dead and June leaves the scene to call Perry.

With some incriminating evidence, Lt Tragg is able to obtain a warrant for murder against June Sinclair. Perry defends her in court while the testimony moves from the stolen painting to the murder in each witness stand answer.

Even though the first half of the show seemed like a chore to watch- the second half pulls the episode to the final stretch. Courtroom testimony from the characters are interesting and fun to watch. We are also introduced to the title of this episode- a crying cherub.

Not the most interesting episode- but watch worthy.

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