Radio Detective Story Hour Episode 60 – Mr. Chameleon

Karl SwensonA look at the detective serials as “soap drama.” Mr. Chameleon came from the factory of Frank and Ann Hummert who are best known as the creators of many of radio soap operas and now some of the long running television daytime dramas. The series starred Karl Swenson (right) as the detective who could disguise himself to solve a crime.

Music under the commentary is “Old Folks” by the Ron Helman Jazz Ensemble from the Podshow music network.


Radio Detective Story Hour Episode 59 – I Deal In Crime

William GarganThough he was much better in Barrie Craig, Confidential Investigator, gravely-voiced William Gargan starred several more times on radio. This week a look at one of his lesser roles in which he seemed to sometimes sleep his way through. This crime detective series starred Gargan as Ross Dolan.


Radio Detective Story Hour Episode 58 – Pete Kelly’s Blues

Jack WebbJust as his successful radio series, Dragnet, was making a move to television, Jack Webb starred in another short lived radio vehicle – Pete Kelly’s Blues. I’ll look at why he might have done so when he had so much on his plate at the time. The series had some great New Orlean’s Style Jazz!


Radio Detective Story Hour Episode 57 – San Francisco Final

Jeff ChandlerThis week you’ll hear an audition episode of a series that apparently never aired. San Francisco Final was produced by many of the same personnel who brought Dragnet to the television. Though San Francisco Final is a very well written episode, it has many of the same elements of Dragnet in style and feel.

The series starred Jeff Chandler who was then a major Hollywood star.


Radio Detective Story Hour Episode 56 – Molle Mystery Theater: Raymond Chandler

Raymond ChandlerI’m back with an all new podcast about a Raymond Chandler short story called “Spanish Blood.” The story is an integral one in Chandler’s development of his “tarnished knight” – Phillip Marlowe.

A look at Raymond Chandler’s idea of the fictional detective and the radio play “Murder in City Hall” from the Molle Mystery Theater.

Radio Detective Story Hour Episode 7 – Charlie Chan Redux

Earl Derr BiggersRepeat podcast while I am on leave from July 2005.

Charlie Chan was the creation of author Earl Derr Biggers (right) whose famous detective was best known in a series of films. But Chan also had a modest run on radio as you will hear in this podcast.

Radio Detective Story Hour Episode 14 – The Shadow

Orson Welles as the ShadowRepeat episode (Sep 2005) while I take some time off.

A look at an unusual Radio Detective – one doesn’t always think of this radio character in the detective vein, though he was indeed the investigator as much as a crime fighter. The Shadow is one of the best remembered radio characters from his pulp creation to radio and films.

Radio Detective Story Hour Episode 55 – Miss Pinkerton, Inc.

Joan Blondell/Dick PowellA look at another female radio detective series. This one had two big stars in Joan Blondell and Dick Powell, then husband and wife. The series, Miss Pinkerton, Inc. is based on the characters created by Mary Roberts Rinehart.

Note: I’ll be taking a couple of weeks off – repeat programs will be appearing here the next two weeks.

Background music is called “Speak Low” by Akili.

Radio Detective Story Hour Episode 54 – The Lone Wolf

Walter CoyIn 1914, pulp fiction writer, Louis Joseph Vance, published the first in a series of mystery detective books starring Michael Lanyard, aka The Lone Wolf. Though Vance died before he could see the industry his books created in the thirties and forties, the books left him a successful writer.

This week, a look at the radio serial, The Lone Wolf with the only available episode of the series which first starred Gerald Mohr, then later Walter Coy (seen in the photo).

Radio Detective Story Hour Episode 53 – The Cases of Mr. Ace

George RaftOne of the lesser known detective radio series, The Cases of Mr. Ace appears to have been in very limited run mostly on WNEW in New York in the late forties. The series was one of only two in which George Raft starred. I personally never really felt Raft was much of a radio actor. His onscreen persona is mostly in his looks and not his voice and it just doesn’t translate well to the medium of radio. So listen in to the somewhat noirish Eddie Ace.

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