Monday, August 15, 2016


Twenty-three times (a number in the Valenzetti Equation from 'Lost' which is appropriate since we're posting this on 8/15/16!) Perry Mason argued murder cases before the judge played by Willis Bouchey.  And in all that time, we never learned his name.  (I think of all the regular justices in the series, and there were about six of them, only S. John Launer had a judge with a surname.)

But being Judge Nameless is a good thing for my theories of "relateeveety", as Bouchey played Judges in several other TV shows in the greater Los Angeles area.  And I'm ready to defend my opinion that they were all the same man.

Besides those 23 'Perry Mason' episodes, we also have:

- "The Machismo Bag" (1969) 

'Gomer Pyle: USMC'
- "Gomer, the Star Witness" (1965)

There were two other judges he played back in the 1960s, both in 1962, in fact.  But the difference there is that they both have last names.  That wouldn't have been insurmountable for including one of them at least, but I have no clue where they took place.....

'The Alfred Hitchcock Hour'
- "I Saw the Whole Thing" (1962) ... Judge Neilson

'Wide Country'
- "Our Ernie Kills People" (1962) ... Judge Spencer

The 'Wide Country' episode could have been anywhere on the rodeo circuit but unlikely to have been taking place in Los Angeles.  But with that episode, there is an interesting theory of "relateeveety" that could still be made.....
'87th Precinct'
- Ramon (1962) ... Harry Spencer

I put it to you, Ladies and Gentlemen of Team Toobworld, that Willis Bouchey was playing twin brothers in those two episodes.  The error in the credits do not play into the reckoning, but perhaps the Powers That Be confused Harry with his brother, Judge Jim......

As some of you may have noticed by now, we're in August and I'm yammering on about a judge from 'Perry Mason' when I should be writing about the wild, wild West as part of our month-long TV Western showcase.

Well, as Andy Griffith might have said, I told you about that because I wanted to tell you about this....

Willis Bouchey played three circuit court judges in the Old West

- "The Quick Noose" (1960) ... Judge Wingate
- "Ride the Whirlwind" (1962) ... Judge Fowler

- "The Lawless Seven" (1961) ... Judge Petrie

I think Judge Wingate was perhaps the father to both of the other two men, but as is so often the case in Toobworld, "Old Nobby" Wingate (no relation to Nobby Ned Wingate) just couldn't keep it in his holster.  During the summer of 1816, Judge Wingate was involved in the adjudication of the so-called "Treaty Of St. Louis" (although it was signed farther north along the Missouri River) between the United States and the Indian tribes known collectively as the Council of Three Fires.  But even though he was married with a son of his own, Wingate still found the time to dabble in affairs with two local women.

One of those women was married and already had a son named Hezekiah Petrie.  His family tree is constantly growing and links together disparate TV shows as 'Cagney & Lacey', 'The Listener', the TV movie "Shootout In A One-Dog Town" and 'The Dick Van Dyke Show'.  She would give birth to fraternal twins, one of whom would take after his father by blood and became a judge in Wyoming.  Meanwhile, the other one, Frank, became an outlaw who changed the spelling of his last name to "Petry" and ended up dying in the "one-dog town" of Opportunity, Arizona.

As for the other illegitimate son who followed in his birth father's career path of the Law, it is unknown if his family line continued down the Toobworld timeline.  There are plenty of Fowlers to be found across "Telemerica", but as Judge Fowler had a daughter named Mary, any children she had would more than likely have carried the name of their father.

(O'Bservation: I have not seen this particular 'Bronco' episode, but I have a feeling Judge Fowler met an untimely end during it....)

So there's my latest theory of "relateeveety", Old West style.

Happy trails to you!

That picture of Bouchey from the Old West is courtesy of my bloggin' buddy Ivan G. Shreve, Jr.  It's actually from a episode of 'Broken Arrow', but I'm fairly certain that it serves as a generic version of Western Willis.....

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