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William Hopper, sharp dresser

KILO NOVEMBER

Practically Family
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Hurricane Coast Florida
When I was in college in the early to mid 1970's I always watched Perry Mason re-runs at 11:30. I watched the originals as a child because my mother is/was a big fan of the show. Because I liked them so much I have bought the shows on DVD when I could find them.

As I have become more style conscious in the past few years, when I watch the show I notice how the characters are dressed. As Perry's amanuensis private investigator Paul Drake, William Hopper's character is a young, successful ladies' man and dresses to the nines in late fifties to early sixties California style.

While some of his sport coats seem to be made of fabric that showed up as sofa upholstery in the 1970's, I do generally like his style. I remember an episode when he wore spectator shoes.

Any other Perry Mason fans on the Lounge?
 

Matt Deckard

Man of Action
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A devout capitalist in Los Angeles CA.
Thanks for the input. I've never really watched much Perry Mason, and perhaps it's because i never liked Perry's wardrobe. Yet I should take a gander at the show again since it's been about 15 years since I've actually watched one. Have any still of his assistant and his wears?
 

Gene

Practically Family
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963
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New Orleans, La.
I can remember watching re-runs at my grandma's house when I was young!

Roger Sterling from Mad Men really reminds me of his style:

paul-drake.jpg


I can also remember William Hopper as the a-hole dad from "Rebel Without a Cause."
 

docneg

One of the Regulars
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186
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Pittsburgh PA
I also watched the show when I was young, and in re-watching them I noticed something I never paid attention to as a kid: William Hopper must have had a partial plate or dentures. Listen carefully to his "s" sounds.

Yes, as was pointed out, some pretty weird fabric in some of his sport coats.

I imagine the son of gossip columnist Hedda Hopper would have been compelled to be stylish on TV, even if the character didn't call for it.

Having said that, how many of us have read the Perry Mason books? I recall one exchange in a story that never made it to the TV screen--Drake says over the phone, "Go to hell, Perry!"
 

ShoreRoadLady

Practically Family
docneg said:
Having said that, how many of us have read the Perry Mason books? I recall one exchange in a story that never made it to the TV screen--Drake says over the phone, "Go to hell, Perry!"

Did somebody say Perry Mason books? :cheers1:

The Paul Drake of the books wasn't supposed to be dressed nearly as sharply as William Hopper's Drake. He was supposed to look like the boring, sober-faced everyman you'd stare right past in a public setting.

But film lends itself to flash, and thus we got William Hopper. Since Raymond Burr's outfits were nothing special, I'd say it was a good trade.
 

Kid Mac

Practically Family
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690
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NC
William Hopper -- WWII Navy frogman, awarded Bronze Star. Some attributed his premature white hair to stress he endured during the war.

Mac
 

skyvue

Call Me a Cab
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2,221
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New York City
The 1930s movies, with Warren William playing Mason, are well worth catching for those with an interest in Perry Mason. I don't think the Paul Drake character appears in those, though.

Some trivia: Hopper was the son of actor DeWolf Hopper and actress and gossip columnist Hedda Hopper.

And some incorrect trivia I long believed: Someone once told me that William Katt, star of 1970's TV show THE GREATEST AMERICAN HERO who played Paul Drake Jr. on the 1980s Mason TV movies, was William Hopper's son.

He wasn't. His mother was Barbara Hale, who played Della Street opposite Raymond Burr on the original Mason series.
 

cookie

I'll Lock Up
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5,927
Location
Sydney Australia
skyvue said:
The 1930s movies, with Warren William playing Mason, are well worth catching for those with an interest in Perry Mason. I don't think the Paul Drake character appears in those, though.

Some trivia: Hopper was the son of actor DeWolf Hopper and actress and gossip columnist Hedda Hopper.

And some incorrect trivia I long believed: Someone once told me that William Katt, star of 1970's TV show THE GREATEST AMERICAN HERO who played Paul Drake Jr. on the 1980s Mason TV movies, was William Hopper's son.

He wasn't. His mother was Barbara Hale, who played Della Street opposite Raymond Burr on the original Mason series.


Love the trivia...Della was wonderful...
 

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