Saturday, June 22, 2013

"The Senior Citizen" or "Burt Mustin: Old Time Cat Burglar"

This episode features the plucky and incorrigible Burt Mustin as a daytime cat burglar. 

Places of residence are burgled, so the majority of the episode takes place on Colonial Street.

Yeah, it's in my top ten favorite episodes.



This pan drives me nuts. The lens shifts and the shots don't match up.

Next, we get another shot of the golf course that we saw all the way back in The Blue Boy episode, The Glen Procustan episode, & the season one finale.


Random cul-de-sac zoom out:




"This is the city-- Los Angeles, California.
It's a productive city of industrious people who work hard, play hard, and live easy.
It's the hope of easy living that attracts most people to Los Angeles.
Some of them want an easy life without hard work.
When they go that route, they're my problem.
I carry a badge."




What's new, Lou Sale?
"Funny you should ask, dad."

The opening sequence with Friday, Gannon, and the newspaper is another installment of Joe and Bill as Bert and Ernie.

Let's go to Eve McVeagh's cafe, click to enlarge. Lots of neat details.


Lots of good lines in this episode; Eve McVeagh gets a bunch.

I like the glitter on the Famous Chili sign. Nice touch:


She might be the same Little Sister that appears in the NALE episode. Time will tell.

Another installment of Bill Eating Weird Food:

A cream soda and a bowl of chili - 1967 cost: 58c. In 2013, just under $4.


The countertop is paisley! 



More furs get stolen in this episode.


Another neat blue pottery ash tray on the desk.

Serious symmetry:


"I took the bulldog edition of The Times home with me to study."

Casual Friday!



Our tidy view across Colonial Street (masquerading as Lime Grove Way).


That is one cool van. The Laundry script is pretty sweet, too:


I wonder if they offered Burt Mustin's part to Doodles Weaver. I can imagine Doodles in this role, as well.



THAT IS RIGHT, JOE. THE HOUSE IS ON UNIVERSAL'S BACKLOT, YOU CAN'T JUST GO IN THROUGH THE FRONT DOOR
THERE IS NO HOUSE INSIDE








There's some great warbly reverse projection background. I'm guessing they elected to use reverse projection to be able to light the actors and avoid the stronger shadows. 


THIS IS A STICK UP




See, the lighting is harsher at this angle.



Old fingerprinting card.


Old ...database, R & I computer, whatever.



Oh, man! Burt Mustin was 83 when he appeared on Dragnet. Helluva character actor.
He played on The Outer Limits and The Twilight Zone, too!


"I'LL SHOW YOU WHO'S STUPID, MISTER BIG SHOT!"




L.A.  in the afternoon. So sunny.











Charles Augustus William Smith
Now serving his sentence at the California Men's Colony, Los Padres, California.

Starred
Burt Mustin as Charles A.W. Smith
Clark Howat as Captain Mack
Robert Patten as Officer Louis J. Sale
Eve McVeagh as Bonnie McKenzie
Natalie Masters as Housewife (Surely she has a name)

Art Direction - Russell Kimball
Set Decor - John McCarthy & John Sturtevant

Aired
October 26, 1967.

Check back in with us next week for a 100% legendary episode. It's another parable about dope!

7 comments:

  1. Just discovered this blog. It's a different, refreshing look at the color DRAGNET shows that appreciates the minutiae found in each episode. Each post is like a photo novel. Excellent!

    Looking forward to your coverage of "The Big High"!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you! The dope episodes are crowd favorites, for sure. I'm glad you found us and glad you enjoy. :)
      I'll keep rolling out episodes every Saturday for the next year and a half until I have covered all of them.
      For the end of season two, I am going to have a special "Wall Art of Season Two" post. There are 28 episodes, so it will take me a few months before I get to do it.
      Looking forward to seeing you in the comments.

      Best,
      Suzy Dragnet

      Delete
  2. This would not have been Bert Mustin's first TV program involving Colonial Street. Leave it to Beaver was filmed there and he played Gus the Fireman in one of the episodes from around 1961. In fact Burt may have burglarized the Cleaver residence in this Dragnet episode! In the Beaver episode, the Beave climbs into a huge tea cup on a billboard and must jump out into a firemans net and keeps repeating "Gus and the Net." remembering Gus' stories of fireman heroics.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Suzy - This would not have been Burt Mustin's first TV episode on Colonial Street. Leave it to Beaver was also filmed on Colonial Street, as you know, and Burt played the part of Gus the fireman in an episode I think was called Gus and the Net. He may have burglarized the Cleaver home in this episode of Dragnet!

    ReplyDelete
  4. Thanks for this great site.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Burt Mustin was always great.

    Did you notice on the rap sheet that the character was arrested in Atlanta on 5/10/58 for Petit Larceny and sentenced 6/4/58 to ten years but was out and in Mobile, Alabama by 6/3/60 for car theft? That's some hefty time off for good behavior!

    ReplyDelete
  6. A friend of mine was in a barbershop quartet with Burt called "The Cavity Four", so-called because as comic devices they took their teeth out...

    ReplyDelete