Perry Mason (1957–1966)
6 user

The Case of the Vanishing Victim 

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Miriam Fielding is charged with poisoning her husband when he is killed in a plane he was piloting. They had a rocky marriage and she suspects him of stealing money from his company. Perry suspects the murder may not be what it appears.


Harmon Jones


Erle Stanley Gardner (based on a novel by), Ernest Frankel | 1 more credit »


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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Raymond Burr ... Perry Mason
Barbara Hale ... Della Street
William Hopper ... Paul Drake
William Talman ... Hamilton Burger
Richard Anderson ... Police Lt. Steve Drumm
Lisa Gaye ... Laraine Keely
Jeanne Cooper ... Miriam Fielding
George Wallace ... Stacey Fielding
Richard Erdman ... Jud Bennett
Russell Arms ... Reed Kavanaugh
John Matthews John Matthews ... F.A.A. Investigator
S. John Launer ... Judge Telford
John Goddard ... Al Dolby
Carl Prickett Carl Prickett ... Operations Clerk
Carol Brewster Carol Brewster ... Ruth Kavanaugh


Stacey Fielding is a renowned pharmaceutical chemist who is apparently killed when the private airplane he was piloting crashed and burned. Prior to his departure, he had been drinking from a flask of whiskey his wife prepared for him and made an offhand remark that she would like nothing better than to see him dead. His wife, Miriam Fielding, hires Perry and Paul to check into her husband's alternate life, including checking out an apartment he had to look for $100,000 in missing funds. But all they find is an empty wall safe and the picture of his mistress, so Perry is concerned he may be being set up. After the crash, Miriam Fielding is arrested and charged with murder. She hires Perry Mason to defend her but the forensic evidence doesn't support the charge and he manages to get her released only to have D.A. Hamilton Burger re-arrest her on the charge. Perry believes there's something else going on and can't help but think that the ongoing theft of pharmaceuticals from the factory... Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Crime | Drama | Mystery







Release Date:

23 January 1966 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


This episode has the first reference to the Vietnam War in the series. See more »


It seems odd that no one noticed that Al, the mechanic, stopped showing up for work at the exact same time as the dead guy bit the dust. See more »


[first lines]
Stacey Fielding: [to mechanic working on his airplane] How soon can I roll, Dolby? It's a long haul to Salt Lake City and I'm taking it alone.
Al Dolby: All ready. I'm buttoning her up, Mr. Fielding.
See more »

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User Reviews

Burger won't give up
15 April 2019 | by bkoganbingSee all my reviews

Someone spikes George Wallace's beverage which he has packed in a thermos for a private plane flight he was taking. Since he was estranged from his wife Jeanne Cooper and she had remarked that she'd sooner see him dead when the plane crashes and the thermos is discovered she's arrested.

But Hamilton Burger really rushed here with an ill prepared case in that the body in the plane was not Wallace, but missing he is. Raymond Burr really made William Talman look stupid in this one. But when the charges are dismissed Talman rearrests her again.

William Hopper as Paul Drake is the hero here. He does more to unravel who was in the plane after all. And Cooper can walk free.

A more complex story and a bit of a departure from the Perry Mason paradigm.

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