Good show starring Alfred Burke as Private Inquiry Agent Frank Marker. He investigates a lot of routine situations from evidence for divorces to missing persons. At the end of the series in 1968 Marker is sent to prison for two and half series. For the following series he’s out on parole and looking to open for business in Brighton. Later on Pauline Delaney appears as his landlady Helen Mortimer.
July 7,1971 episode: “A Mug Named Frank” – Frank is in a supermarket and sees an elderly lady slip some items into her handbag. A woman nearby goes to the manager. Frank bumps into the woman, Mrs.Stuart, and manages to get the items out of her bag into her basket and saves her from a shoplifting charge.
She invites him to her place for tea. On the mantle is a picture of her son Gerald when he was in the army. There’s also an antique silver box he bought her for her birthday in 1947 when he was fifteen.
Gerald is overdrawn at the bank and they’ve run out of patience with him and refuse to lend him any more money until he starts paying it back. He asks his wife Patricia to hit up her wealthy father. No dice. His mother isn’t exactly wealthy so he decides to visit his Uncle Robert who he hasn’t seen in years. No luck there.
Frank and Helen are in a restaurant and Helen is trying to convince him to leave Brighton since the police know he’s out on parole and it won’t be an easy ride. In walk the Stuarts’. Frank thinks he recognizes Gerald from prison.
Back at Mrs.Stuart’s place Gerald fakes that a hinge is lose on the box and he’ll take it and have it repaired. He doesn’t know it but Patricia calls Frank and asks him to keep an eye on Gerald.
He follows him to his place of business in Windsor and sees him go into an antique shop to sell the box. When he leaves Frank goes in and pretends he’s looking for an antique box. He doesn’t know that a police inspector is there and knows the box was stolen back in 1947. Frank goes to the police station. He gives a lame excuse about why he wanted the box. Inspector Percy Firbank doesn’t buy it.
The show ends by explaining the episode title and an unusual end to the case. The show is definitely worth checking out and it’s no secret why it was so successful.