Radio Detective Story Hour Episode 273 – Dead Man Control

Helen ReillyOne of the best radio mystery series in the 1940s was the Crime Club which based its plays upon stories written by actual crime writers of the times. These were writers whose works were part of the Doubleday Crime Club imprints in the forties and were usually cracker crime stories.

The Mutual Broadcasting System snapped up a radio package offered by Doubleday and began airing adaptations from the imprint in December 1946. Most of radio plays were adapted by scripter Stedman Coles with sometime help by Wyllis Cooper and James Earthine. In March 1947 the series final year, an adaptation of a story by mystery and crime writer Helen Reilly was aired. The story was based on her novel Dead Man Control. Reilly’s novels were mostly police procedurals but sometimes with a bit of pulp in the characters.

Reilly’s primary protagonist was itinerant detective Inspector Christopher McKee. McKee was a Scottish New York City inspector who author Reilly described as a single-minded detective who relied his hunches as much as the scientific tools he used when working on crimes. He was direct in his questioning of potential suspects and never worried about their feelings.

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