Our final look at Gunsmoke as detective serial. This is from the regular run of Gunsmoke in 1952 starring William Conrad (right). I’ll look at how it shares some elements of the detective genre.
Gunsmoke? A detective show?
This week, a look at how Gunsmoke was first conceived as a hard boiled western detective series. A little history on the beginnings of the concept and an audition recording by two writers of hardboiled radio detective stories – Mort Fine and David Friedkin.
This audition starred Rye Billsbury (later Michael Rye) as “Mark Dillon.”
A slight wrinkle to the theme of detectives this week. A look at the newspaperman as detective as Jimmy Stewart (right) turns detective as he tries to solve a mis-carriage of justice. The radio play was based upon the film Call Northside 777, a great noir film. Besides Stewart, I’ll go into some of the veteran radio actors you’ll hear in this week’s play.
Music under is Lac Fantome by Nick Kepics from garageband.com
E.W. Hornung (right) was the brother-in-law of Arthur Conan Doyle. Hornung’s own fictional detective rivaled Conan Doyle’s and the two would often create stories that referenced the other. Where Conan Doyle’s Holmes and Watson were the upright detectives who fantasized about becoming criminals, Hornung’s A.J. Raffles and his helper Harry “Bunny” Manders were criminals – specifically amateur cracksmen.
This week you’ll hear CBS Radio’s version of the Hornung Raffles.
There were only two radio detective serials in which one of the detectives was played by a woman and a major film star. This week I’ll look at one of those serials – Results, Inc. and you be able to hear only one of three that are known to exist of the series. The star was the glamorous Claire Trevor (right), who plays Terry Travers opposite her fellow detective, Johnny Strange portrayed by Lloyd Nolan.
Music under is “Get Out of the Blue” by Nick Kepics on Garageband.com
Just as radio detectives often seemed to be loners, there were also several radio detective husband and wife teams. Most think immediately of Nick and Nora Charles, but another popular one on radio that even made it to film and television was Mr. & Mrs. North. Based on the novels of Frances and Richard Lockridge, for most of the radio run Jerry North was played by Joseph Curtain while Pam North was portrayed by Alice Frost (right).
Happy New Year!
This week a rarely heard short-lived series that featured fiction’s famous detectives telling about their most famous cases. The series was called Murder Clinic and each week featured a different detective from fiction.
Music under is “Saturday Morning” by Anne Farnsworth from the Podsafe Music Network.
A bit outside the regular “detective” stories, this episode from the Campbell Playhouse (Mercury Theater on the Air) takes Dash Hammett’s (right) story about power and corruption rolls one character into a “detective” mold and comes up with “The Glass Key.” This one is well done.
This one is a bit longer than normal due to the length of the episode.
A look at Edith Meiser (right), who was responsible for first bringing Sherlock Holmes to radio. Meiser adapted almost all the Holmes canon for radio beginning in the early thirties until 1945. She later wrote the text for a comic stripe of Holmes in the fifties. An accomplished actress, who also wrote books, films and radio plays. You’ll hear a rare Holmes radio play from 1934.