The Shadow was long believed to have debuted on radio as a program in its own right on September 26, 1937, on the Mutual Broadcasting System. But the character actually premiered in September 1931, on CBS, as part of the hourlong The Blue Coal Radio Revue (named for the show's sponsor), featuring Frank Readick - The Shadow announcer of Detective Stories - as The Shadow, and playing Sundays at 5:30 p.m. Eastern standard time.
"Too Many Duplicates"
Suspense went through several major phases, characterized by different hosts, sponsors, and director/producers. Formula plot devices were followed for all but a handful of episodes: The protagonist was usually a normal person suddenly dropped into a threatening or bizarre situation; solutions were "withheld until the last possible second"; and evildoers were usually punished in the end.
"Needs to be culled to eliminate programs"
Here are 12 acclaimed, exciting, fully dramatized performances of Conan Doyle classics. It's elementary that any Conan Doyle fan will want this splendid set of Sherlock Holmes mysteries, 12 timeless tales performed as radio theater and linked by violin-music interludes.
"Sir Arthur Conan Doyle would be proud"
The CBS Radio Workshop was an experimental series of productions, subtitled "radio's distinguished series to man's imagination" that ran between 27 January 1956 and 22 September 1957. The premiere production was Brave New World, narrated by Huxley himself, with a complicated sound-effects score that evidently took a long time to construct, and comprised a ticking metronome, tom-tom beats, bubbling water, an air hose, a cow's moo, an oscillator, and three kinds of wine glasses clicking together.
"OH, FOR FORD'S SAKE"
This is an collection of Inner Sanctum Mysteries, an oldtime radio show from the 1940s and 1950s. If you love a good horror story, you'll love these. You get all these (and many others plus more of the same genre):
"Worth the listen if you know what you're getting."
Theater Five was ABC's attempt to revive radio drama during the early 1960s. The series name was derived from its time slot, 5:00 p.m. Running Monday through Friday, it was an anthology of short stories, each about 20 minutes long. News programs and commercials filled out the full 30 minutes. There was a good bit of science fiction, and some of the plots seem to have been taken from the daily newspaper. Fred Foy of The Lone Ranger fame was an ABC staff announcer in the early '60s who, among other duties, did Theater Five.
Gunshots, fist fights, and footsteps in the dark! Come hear crime and mystery, action and suspense with radio's greatest detectives! Ten hours of bracing crime-stopping broadcasts bring you Sherlock Holmes, Sam Spade, The Saint, The Shadow, Johnny Dollar, Bulldog Drummond - and 14 more favorites! Vincent Price, Bob Bailey, Basil Rathbone, Howard Duff, Dick Powell, and more star in 20 tales that are hard boiled and heroic, brilliant and bloody.
Alan Ladd stars as newspaperman turned mystery novelist Dan Holliday. To seek out new ideas for his fiction, Holliday runs classified ads in the Star-Times newspaper, where he formerly worked: "Adventure wanted, will go anywhere, do anything - write Box 13, Star-Times." Each episode follows Holliday's adventures when he responds to the letters sent to him by such people as a psycho killer and various victims.
On the evening of October 30th, 1938, Earth went to war with Mars. Martians invaded New Jersey! Here is the famous panic-inducing broadcast that shook the world, starring Orson Welles.
"Great Romp in History"
The Whistler was a radio mystery anthology that debuted on CBS Radio on May 16, 1942. The show was heard only on the West Coast and had Signal Oil as the main sponsor. There were attempts to broadcast the show on the East Coast, one in July to September 1946 and the other in March 1947 to September 1948, with Campbell Soup and Household Finance as the suggested sponsors.
If you are a lover of old-time radio and a fan of Orson Welles, you won't want to miss this treasure chest of legendary Orson Welles radio broadcasts! With his flair for the sensational and innovative, Welles captured audiences' attention with his 1930s CBS weekly drama series The Mercury Theatre on the Air, later renamed The Campbell Playhouse, which featured hour-long dramatizations of classic books. His 1938 production, The War of the Worlds (an H. G. Wells adaptation) was especially memorable, as were many other productions, each featuring talented voices and actors.
"Here is my review for what is worth."
Our Miss Brooks was a hit on radio from the outset; within eight months of its launch as a regular series, the show landed several honors, including four for Eve Arden, who won polls in four individual publications of the time. Arden had actually been the third choice to play the title role. Harry Ackerman, at the time CBS's West Coast director of programming, wanted Shirley Booth for the part.
Everyone's favorite western, Gunsmoke, debuted June 26, 1952, on the CBS radio airwaves on starring William Conrad as Matt Dillon, and ran until June 18, 1961, making it the longest running dramatic series in radio history. This amazing audio collection contains 64 episodes from the first radio season, and are the live cast recordings from the original on-air performances.
"Flawed, but good, collection of the classic series"
Gerald Mohr stars as Raymond Chandler's hard-boiled gumshoe in The Adventures of Philip Marlowe, a series based on one of the most popular sleuths in the history of crime fiction. The show first aired in 1947, with Van Heflin in the title role. Chandler disliked the initial incarnation, dubbing it "totally flat". However, in the 1948 revival, Chandler admitted satisfaction, remarking that Mohr's voice "packed personality". Mohr indeed made the role of Marlowe his own, portraying a brash and forceful tough guy who could let fly with the occasional wisecrack.
"Classic detective noir."
America's Fabulous Freelance Insurance Investigator faces cases of killing for vengeance and keeping silent for honor... "dead" men who won't stay down for long (or alive for much longer)... beneficiaries that can't be found and beautiful mixed up risk-takers who may be out on their last ledge. He pads his expense account in pursuit of stolen jewels, arsonists, crooked cops, and romance, all while he tries to solve matters of murder.
Yours Truly, Johnny Dollar began in 1949 as a typical slam-bang detective series, and though consistently well written and acted, the series never really captured an enthusiastic audience. However, in the fall of 1955, Bob Bailey took over the title role; veteran director Jack Johnstone and writers John Dawson, Robert Ryf, and Les Crutchfield joined the production team; and the series was transformed into a quarter-hour, five-a-week strip show.
The Whistler was a radio mystery anthology that debuted on CBS Radio on May 16, 1942. The show was heard only on the West Coast and had Signal Oil as the main sponsor. There were attempts to broadcast the show on the East Coast, one in July to September 1946 and the other in March 1947 to September 1948, with Campbell Soup and Household Finance as the suggested sponsors. The show centered on a character called The Whistler, the mysterious narrator of various murder stories.
Yours Truly, Johnny Dollar was a typical slam-bang detective series and though consistently well written and acted, the series never really captured an enthusiastic audience. However, in the fall of 1955, Bob Bailey took over the title role, veteran director Jack Johnstone and writers John Dawson, Robert Ryf, and Les Crutchfield joined the production team, and the series was transformed into a quarter hour, five-a-week strip show. The result was a rebirth.
The Lineup was a hard-boiled drama. Like Dragnet, it realistically showed police doing their jobs. The show always began with a police sergeant ordering suspects to stand at attention so that the victim, behind one-way glass, could try to identify the criminal. While the lineup was rarely the key to solving the case, it did give the show a rhythm and also allowed for humor in the interrogation of the suspects by the sergeant. The series began as a summer replacement for The FBI in Peace and War in 1950, but soon got its own time slot.
Here are 12 episodes of the horror and mystery series written and produced by radio announcers beginning in 1946. There were several series under the Hall of Fantasy banner, all produced by Richard Thorne. The first originated from radio station KALL in Salt Lake City. Richard Thorne and Carl Greyson were announcers for the station and coproduced the bare-bones horror series beginning in 1946. Written or adapted by Robert Olson and directed by Thorne, the stories were mostly murder mysteries with traditional endings.
Screen favorite Dana Andrews stars as undercover informer Matt Cvetic in tales of espionage, duplicity, and Cold War adventure in the syndicated hit I Was a Communist for the FBI! These exploits, suggested by real life adventures, are artifacts of a unique time in American culture. Listen in as the Bureau seeks out the enemies of democracy, moving ever deeper into secrecy and intrigue.
He takes the same train every week at this time, with tales to thrill you a little and chill you a little! Here's Maurice Tarplin as The Mysterious Traveler, your sardonic seatmate on the fast track to mystery! Rushing you headlong into mistrust, misdeeds, and murder are Phillip Clarke, Staats Cotsworth, Sandra Gould, Santos Ortega, Joseph Julian, Elspeth Eric, Cameron Prud'Homme, and Raymond Edward Johnson, playing the parts of the unwise, the unwary, and the undone.
Willard Waterman stars as radio's romantic water commissioner in 16 laugh-filled episodes of The Great Gildersleeve! Walter Tetley co-stars as nephew Leroy, with Mary Lee Robb as niece Marjorie, and Lillian Randolph as housekeeper Birdie Lee Coggins. Gildy goes toe-to-toe with the likes of crotchety Judge Horace Hooker (Earle Ross), sardonic barber Floyd Munson (Arthur Q. Bryan), Summerfield druggist J.W. Peavey (Richard LeGrand), and Marjorie's husband Bronco (Richard Crenna).
A newspaperman of the people, by the people, and for the people - that's Randy Stone of the Chicago Star, pounding the city streets night after night on the trail of crime, corruption, and haunting human interest stories! Frank Lovejoy stars as Stone in these 16 digitally restored and remastered episodes from 1950. Sheldon Leonard, Joan Banks, William Conrad, Lurene Tuttle, Gerald Mohr, Betty Lou Gerson, Bill Johnstone, and more portray the complex characters in his intriguing adventures.
Fast-paced and fast-mouthed, here's snappy, scrappy big-city journalism at its best! Editor Steve Wilson and ace reporter Lorelei Kilbourne bring the news to life at the Illustrated Press. Edward G. Robinson, Ona Munson, Claire Trevor, Ed Pawley, and Fran Carlon star in Big Town! Their cosmopolitan co-stars include Paula Winslowe, Lou Merrill, Joe Kearns, Gale Gordon, Verna Felton, Hanley Stafford, and Hans Conreid, with a special guest appearance by famed silent film star Evelyn Brent.
He's just a regular guy with a regular family and a regular job, but when he gets into trouble...oh brother, what a revoltin' development it is! Here comes William Bendix as radio's favorite working stiff, Chester A. Riley, with Paula Winslowe as his ever-patient wife, Peg, and John Brown as the funereal Digger O'Dell! Whether he's catching dogs or collecting rent, negotiating with neighbors or figuring out females, he gives it his Brooklyn best!
Twenty years after they first convulsed the nation over the air, Edgar Bergen and Charlie McCarthy were still going strong - in a slick, entertaining full-hour series featuring an array of interesting and unusual guests! Join Bergen and his friends Jack Kirkwood, Ray Noble, Gary Crosby, Carol Richards, and the Mellomen - plus Charlie's friends Mortimer Snerd and Effie Klinker - for 10 digitally restored and remastered episodes from the fall of 1955.
"Laugh a while...let a song be your style..." and enjoy radio's most outrageous comedy couple: Phil Harris and Alice Faye. They are off to a raucous start in these classic early episodes, co-starring Elliott Lewis as the unforgettable Frankie Remley! Stunts, gags, and over-the-top shenanigans are enabled by the diabolical delivery boy Julius Abbruzio (played by the delightful Walter Tetley). Cameo appearances are provided by Gale Gordon, Frank Nelson, Mel Blanc, and the dashing Robert Taylor.
"Class! Settle down, please, and listen to your teacher!" She's Madison High School favorite Connie Brooks! Miss Brooks bravely battles against the absent-mindedness of Mrs. Davis, the disdain of Principle Conklin, the interference of Daisy Enright, and the reserve of Mr. Boynton. Her struggles are uphill and uproarious! Here's Eve Arden, with Gale Gordon, Richard Crenna, Gloria McMillan, Jane Morgan, Jeff Chandler, and Robert Rockwell in 16 adventures in mid-century education!
In 1949, NBC brought handsome Irish American actor Brian Donlevy to the radio microphones as international troubleshooter Steve Mitchell in the spy series Dangerous Assignment. Mitchell worked for an unnamed US government intelligence agency, whose boss, "the Commissioner," dispatched him to world trouble spots. Mitchell's assignment was to solve problems in record time and in accordance with US interests.
Although "Ol' Blue Eyes" would conquer records, film, and television, it was radio that first made Frank Sinatra a star. Spanning the years 1943 to 1954, this collection showcases Sinatra from such shows as Suspense, The Frank Sinatra Show, The Jack Benny Program, The Burns and Allen Show, and more. Included is the final episode of Sinatra's action/detective series, Rocky Fortune, a low-budget radio series that he decided not to continue after winning his Academy Award.
Frontier Gentleman was a radio western series aimed at adults that aired on CBS radio for one season in 1958. It starred radio veteran John Dehner as J. B. Kendall, a reporter for the London Times. The series followed the adventures of the freelance journalist as he roamed the western United States in search of stories for his newspaper. Kendall often crossed paths with well-known historical figures, such as Jesse James, Calamity Jane, and Wild Bill Hickok.
Michael Shayne, "the reckless, redheaded Irishman", was a popular hard-boiled detective created by crime novelist Brett Halliday. In the novels, Michael Shayne settled in Miami just after WWII, making crime pay by fighting it with a license and an attitude. Like Mike Hammer and Philip Marlowe, Shayne was a loner. The backstory on Mike is that he was happily married, but it hit him hard when his wife was tragically murdered. Grief stricken, Shayne loses himself in his work as a private eye, prowling the dark streets of the city.
Made as a prequel to the hit film The Third Man, this radio show was created to follow the adventures of the popular character Harry Lime, played here and in the movie by Orson Welles. The 1949 film The Third Man won an Academy Award and was an international success, called "magic" by Roger Ebert and "one of the finest films ever made" by The New York Times.
It is a story told many times in the century since the Great Martian Invasion - of a devastating and irresistible assault, of mankind in panicked flight, and of humanity's miraculous salvation. Every man and woman, girl, and boy across the globe knows the tale and hears it with reverence and gratitude. And yet - is that the whole story? Did the invaders have all the advantages? All the technology? Not all the brains were on their side. Not all the guile. Certainly not all the ruthless determination.
When the world's greatest consulting detective is faced with the return of his greatest foe, he must spring into action! Along with his allies, Dr. John Watson and Irene Adler, the famous Sherlock Holmes navigates his way through London's dark underbelly. What is the infamous Professor James Moriarty up to? How is the queen involved? And why does a man named Gutierrez have a Cockney accent? Find out in this raucous comedy musical audio drama!
Lyon, portrayed by Wilms Herbert, ran the International Detective Bureau, a small private investigations firm in downtown Los Angeles, with often oversized ambitions. Regan handled rough assignments from Lyon, with whom he was not always on good terms. Actor Jack Webb played Regan as tough and tenacious, with a dry sense of humor. The series ended when Webb left the show in December 1948, but was resurrected in October 1949 with a new cast.
Here are 12 episodes from the greatest Western shows ever broadcast during the golden age of radio! You'll hear William Conrad as Marshal Matt Dillon in Gunsmoke; John Dehner as the man called Paladin in Have Gun - Will Travel; Alan Ladd in a Western tale well calculated to keep you in suspense; John Wayne, Henry Fonda, and Gregory Peck reprising their film roles in Fort Apache, Destry Rides Again, and Yellow Sky; plus other great Western radio episodes, including four episodes of the high-adventure series Escape.