Category Archives: Detective Radio

Sgt Joe Friday’s Dragnet Christmas

“TUM de Dumdum, Tum de Dum Dum DUMMM!” Christmas is found on the mean streets of Los Angeles. One of the saddest possible Christmas stories is Dragnet‘s “Twenty Two Rifle for Christmas.” The story about an unsupervised boy whose friend … Continue reading

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21st Precinct and Dragnet, East and West Coast Cop Shows

The phenomenal success of Dragnet, premiering in 1949, was bound to have imitators. One of the Columbia network’s answers was 21st Precinct. Comparisons between the two police procedural dramas are interesting. Both shows emphasize the human reality of police work. … Continue reading

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Jack Webb in Pete Kelly’s Blues

In Pete Kelly’s Blues: Pete Kelly (Jack Webb) fronts the house band, the Big Seven, at a speakeasy in the roaring ’20s is a world of jazz, gangsters, gun molls, g-men, bad booze and desperate people trying to save their … Continue reading

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Old Time Radio Father’s Day Shows

Mom gets all the credit. Maybe that’s fair; she had the really tough part for the first nine months of the project. It seems like Dad is there mostly for the fun parts. Learning to ride a bike, going to … Continue reading

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“I Was a Communist for the FBI” Radio Show Broadcast 58 Years Ago Today

The series capitalized on America’s Second Red Scare and the era of McCarthyism. In many ways the series reflected the Film Noir genre of Detective movies; the radio show was actually a takeoff on a film of the same name. … Continue reading

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Happy Mothers Day, Even to Mother in Law

“Never depend on the glory of the Morning or the Smiles of your Mother In Law.” -Japanese proverb In the world of Old Time Radio,  Amos ‘n’ Andy Kingfish’s Mother in law comes to stay with him when Sapphire goes … Continue reading

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The Shadow of Fu Manchu

A gong sounds and Gerald Mohr ominously intones “The Shadow…of Fooo ManChoo.” There is a long period of eerie organ music at the beginning and end of each episode; this is because the show was recorded for Syndication. The long … Continue reading

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Mr. Keen, Tracer of Lost Persons: Quicksand Murder Case

Although primarily known for their work in Musicals and Soap Operas, Frank and Anne Hummert had a degree of success with Detective/Mystery radio programs. The mystery shows had many of the elements that the couple used in their Soap Opera … Continue reading

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The Hummert Radio Factory

Half of all the advertising revenue generated by daytime programming in the 30s and 40s came from programs created by Anne and Frank Hummert. Anne’s father believed that it was a waste of money to educate a girl, so she … Continue reading

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Dana Andrews: “The Face of Noir”

Dana Andrews was an A-List Hollywood talent during the 40s, but was relegated to mostly B-movies during the 50s. His career extended into the 1980s. Born into the family of a Baptist Minister, Andrews spent his earliest years in Mississippi … Continue reading

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