Yahoo Answers is shutting down on May 4th, 2021 (Eastern Time) and the Yahoo Answers website is now in read-only mode. There will be no changes to other Yahoo properties or services, or your Yahoo account. You can find more information about the Yahoo Answers shutdown and how to download your data on this help page.
Perry Mason TV Show Question?
From 1957 to 1966, Raymond Burr played the part of Perry Mason on the television show of the same name. The role of Paul Drake was played by William Hopper. He was the son of Hedda Hopper, an infamous gossip columnist who destroyed many lives with her malicious reporting. It is now generally conceded that Raymond Burr was homosexual. If something like that had come out in the 1950's, it would have ruined him. For example, Hedda Hopper strongly insinuated that Cary Grant was homosexual, but his popularity was such that he was not significantly affected by her smear tactics.
Do you think that the decision to cast Hedda Hopper's son in the role of Paul Drake was some sort of payoff or protective measure to keep her from commenting on Burr's sexual orientation?
Thanks to all who respond.
- RubymLv 71 decade agoFavorite Answer
From what I understand, at that time, very few people, even those who worked with him were aware of his sexual orientation. From the way he seemed on TV at least, there was nothing 'effeminate' about him and he would not seem to be somebody people would suspect of being gay.
I don't know if the actor who played the role of Paul Drake on the show was aware or not. Maybe if he was he kept it from his mother. Hollywood had many closet gays and many were not revealed until after they died, although there may have been rumors.