List of possible suspects

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The portrayals in the non-novel based media may have
more to the way we conceive our hero, specifically movies and television. Although most of them lacked success it's easily understandable that the appearances of the actors in magazines, TV-shows,... etc. influenced the way Ellery Queen was seen by his readers.
In the 70s television series Ellery is far more sloppy than he ever was in the books. This is mainly due to the producers Richard Levinson and William Link. Later they took this even a step further when they made Columbo . While Link was a Dannay-adept, Levinson had a high Marlowe factor which propably accounts for the Columbo raincoat. Some coverartists succeeded in making Ellery a "clean" Columbo-clone...They based their figure on a personage in Dostojevski's Crime and Punishment. I still think they also recognized the shortcomings of Ellery as a person of flesh and blood and injected him with the same 'sloppiness' they found so useful for their later Columbo-creation. And it worked! Peter Falk certainly portrayed Columbo as a sloppy detective and even imitated a characteristic Jim Hutton introduced: when stopped to answer a question we see Hutton halt and raise one arm in the air and pause while thinking.

Above right: While Link was a Dannay-adept, Levinson had a high Marlowe factor which probably accounts for the Columbo raincoat. Some cover artists succeeded in making Ellery a "clean" Columbo-clone...

This Ellery Queen television series was a milestone in the perception of the Ellery-figure. The Ellery Queen figure reflected Hutton's own tastes in wardrobe since he pleaded with the producers no to make Queen a fob. They gave him carte blanche in selecting a wardrobe. He headed for Brooks Bros. to avoid trendy styles, settling for true blue conservative elegance. He particularly likes wearing sweaters with shirt collars protruding at the neck.
Adepts who already read some works were disappointed to see their cool and collected sleuth changed. The NBC
Ellery Queen pilot film captured the "authentic" Ellery's nearly as he has ever been captured. His sloppy personal habits are a contradiction to his well ordered mental skills. He is a slob at home, in his apartment he shares with his father, Inspector Queen; yet he is mentally well-disciplined. He can notice a clue as obscure as the number of matches in a matchbook, yet become so engrossed in his writing that he doesn't hear the telephone ring. Although I had read several Queens at the time, it did influence my image of both Ellery and his father immensely. Imagine the shock I got when reading the first ten novels where Ellery is an aristocratic 'wooden stick' with pince-nez. A figure much like the TV-series Simon Brimmer, which never appeared in the books. Such a figure would have to overcome many difficulties before the TV-audiences, who tend to prefer the underdog. There is only one thing more enervating than someone who thinks he is always right... someone who is always right.

     Japanese anime based on the American filmindustry: Ralph Bellamy ("Murder Ring") clearly stood model for this drawing of Ellery Queen ...
Above: Japanese anime based on the American film industry: Ralph Bellamy (Murder Ring) clearly stood model for this drawing of Ellery Queen ...

Appeared in EQ movieDonald Cook 09/26/1901 - 10/01/1961Donald Cook  -- CLICK FOR MORE --

In a 1935 movie Cook plays Ellery Queen in a low-key, poker-faced fashion, which is closer to the original concept than most of the movies.  ... (click on picture for more)

Eddie Quillan  -- CLICK FOR MORE -Appeared in EQ movieEddie Quillan 03/31/1907 - 07/19/1990

This talented performer was woefully miscast as Ellery Queen in The Mandarin Mystery (1937). Republic opted to play our favorite detective "for laughs." ... (click on picture for more)

Hugh Marlowe -- CLICK FOR MORE -- ...Appeared on radio showAppeared on EQ tv-showHugh Marlowe 1/30/1911 - 5/2/1982

Hugh Marlowe usually was a secondary lead. ... He was the first Ellery Queen on radio in 1940. A role he also played some 14 years later on TV ... (click on picture for more)

Ralph Bellamy -- CLICK FOR MORE -- ...Appeared in EQ movieRalph Bellamy 6/17/1904 - 11/29/1991

He starred in numerous whodunits,  as super-sleuth Ellery Queen in four terrible 1940-41 B's beginning with Ellery Queen, Master Detective. ... (click on picture for more)

Carleton G.Young  -- CLICK FOR MORE -- ...Appeared on radio showCarleton G. Young 5/26/1907 - 7/11/1971

One of radio's most successful and prolific actors in Radio. On radio he took over from Hugh Marlowe as Ellery Queen in 1942-43. ... (click on picture for more)

William Gargan -- CLICK FOR MORE -- ...Appeared in EQ movieWilliam Gargan 07/17/1905 - 2/16/1979

In most of his screen appearances, Gargan basically played himself: a robust, handsome, high-spirited Irishman. He played master detective Ellery Queen in three 1942 Columbia movies ... (click on picture for more)

Sydney Smith -- CLICK FOR MORE -- ...Appeared on radio showSydney Smith 11/25/1909 - 3/3/1978

In the 4th radio season (1943-1944) Sydney stepped in as Ellery Queen, a role he continued to play until 1947. He already had some radio success before assuming the role of the famous detective... (click on picture for more).

Richard Coogan -- CLICK FOR MORE -- ...Appeared on radio showRichard Coogan 4/4/1914 - 3/12/2014

He lasted only a few months as Ellery Queen in the radio series. As star of the first season of the live sci-fi-series Captain Video (1949-1950) he became one of the first actors to make his mark on TV. ... (click on picture for more)

Lawrence Dobkin -- CLICK FOR MORE -- ...Appeared on radio showLawrence Dobkin 9/16/1919 - 10/28/2002

In 1947 Larry was asked to play radio's infamous Ellery Queen.  He would play the detective for two years and would later direct the Ellery Queen TV-series. ... (click on picture for more)

Howard Culver -- CLICK FOR MORE -- ...Appeared on radio showHoward Culver 6/2/1918 - 8/4/1984

In April-May 1948 Howard became the last actor to play Ellery Queen in the US radio series.  Jokingly he later his told his daughters he '"killed" Ellery Queen. ...  (click on picture for more)

Richard Hart -- CLICK FOR MORE -- ...Appeared on EQ tv-showRichard Hart 4/14/1915 - 1/2/1951

The star of The Adventures of Ellery Queen, the first TV-series to try and bring to live Ellery Queen.  The live show appeared on Dumont beginning in 1950. ... (click on picture for more)

Lee Bowman -- CLICK FOR MORE -- ...Appeared on EQ tv-showLee Bowman 12/28/1914 - 12/25/1979

Since his debut in 1937, he spent years playing second leads, with suave, elegant style and dapper, handsome looks. He briefly starred in the TV's The Adventures of Ellery Queen (1950-51).   ... (click on picture for more)

Richard Derr  -- CLICK FOR MORE -- ...Appeared on EQ tv-showRichard Derr 6/15/1917 - 5/8/1992

Played Ellery Queen only once in the TV-episode "Confidential Agent" (8-27-52) of The Adventures of Ellery Queen as replacement for Lee Bowman who was on vacation...   ... (click on picture for more)

George Nader -- CLICK FOR MORE -- ...Appeared on EQ tv-showGeorge Nader 10/19/1921 - 2/4/2002

After his screen career Nader starred in three short-lived TV-series: The Further Adventures of Ellery Queen (1958), The Man and The Challenge (1960) and Shannon (1961). ... (click on picture for more)

Lee Philips -- CLICK FOR MORE -- ...Appeared on EQ tv-showLee Philips 01/10/1927 - 3/3/1999

Past the halfway point of The Further Adventures of Ellery Queen TV-series (1958) Philips took over as EQ, who he portrayed as a man of awareness and compassion.  ... (click on picture for more)

Bill Owen -- CLICK FOR MORE -- ...Appeared on radio showBill Owen 2/1/1931 - 

Bill portrayed Ellery
in the nationally syndicated series Ellery Queen's Minute Mysteries (1965-67). It ran for many years on radio stations ... (click on picture for more)
Peter Lawford -- CLICK FOR MORE -- ...

Appeared on EQ tv-showPeter Lawford 9/7/1923 - 12/24/1984

In 1971 Universal prepared a 2 hour Ellery Queen pilot. Lawford played Ellery Queen as an over aged, mod "Swinging London" hipster... (click on picture for more)

Jim Hutton -- CLICK FOR MORE -- ...Appeared on EQ tv-showJim Hutton 5/31/1934 - 6/2/1979

The "definite" Ellery Queen due to his likeable impersonation in the NBC-TV series. Hutton died at age 45 -- just short of the start of his son Timothy's career ... (click on picture for more)

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Introduction | Floor Plan | Q.B.I. | List of Suspects | Whodunit?  | Q.E.D. | Kill as directed | New | Copyright 

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