Show Type: Legal Drama

First Telecast: September 20, 1986

Last Telecast: September 7, 1995


Benjamin L. Matlock..... Andy Griffith

Charlene Matlock (1986-1987)..... Linda Purl

Tyler Hudson (1986-1989)..... Kene Holliday

Michelle Thomas (1987-1992)..... Nancy Stafford

Cassie Phillips (1987-1988)..... Kari Lizer

Assistant D.A. Julie March (1987-1992)..... Julie Sommars

D.A. Lloyd Burgess (1986-1990)..... Michael Durrell

Lieutenant Bob Brooks (1986-1990)..... David Froman

Judge Irene Sawyer (1986-1989)..... Lucille Meredith

Judge Richard Cooksey (1986-1990)..... Richard Newton

Les Calhoun (1988-1990)..... Don Knotts

Conrad McMaster (1989-1993)..... Clarence Gilyard, Jr.

Leanne McIntyre (1993-1995)..... Brynn Thayer

Cliff Lewis (1993-1995)..... Daniel Roebuck

Billy Lewis (1993-1995)..... Warren Frost

Jerri Stone (1994-1995)..... Carol Huston


Andy Griffith brought his patented Southern portrayal back to TV in this murder-mystery series about an unassuming, but very crafty, Harvard-educated lawyer.

Ben Matlock was one of the top defense attorneys in Atlanta, and for good reason; like Perry Mason, he always seemed to prove his client innocent, often with some last-minute, Earth-shattering, courtroom revelation. Helping out were his daughter Charlene, a lawyer, and Tyler, a stock market whiz whom Matlock kept luring away to do his legwork. When a case bogged down, Ben would retreat to his beautiful, 100-year-old stone house in Willow Springs, Georgia, where he would strum his banjo and ponder clues.

Matlock proved to have long-term popularity with older viewers, running for six seasons on NBC and then moving to ABC. Ben's supporting characters were not so lucky, however. Charlene was replaced by Michelle, who gave way to Leanne, who was also Ben's daughter. Ben's legmen were Tyler, then Conrad, then Cliff. Other characters that came and went were: eager law clerk Cassie; pesky neighbor Les; Cliff's eccentric Dad Billy and Investigator Jerri, not to mention a host of Judges and officials.

Some of the episodes were made into two-hour movies and are still aired today on some cable networks.