First You Read, Then You Write, by Francis M. Nevins.: "The first 19 episodes of the Perry Mason TV series (1957-66) came out on DVD last month. In recent decades millions have seen this old series on WTBS, but every episode was cut to shreds to accommodate far more commercials than were the norm back in the Fifties. These DVD copies are complete and re-mastered and lovely to look at.
Whether the series stands up well after almost half a century is another question entirely. All the early episodes were supposedly based on Erle Stanley Gardner’s novels but – as I’ve confirmed by rereading several of the books after watching their TV incarnations – it would be more accurate to describe most of them as using parts of Gardner’s plots and some of his characters in new and much simpler stories, completely lacking the breakneck pace and dynamism of the novels. "