Two days’ worth of old-time radio listening for the lack of price of one, including one wooden court trial and one classic radio exposure, among other jewels:
The Fred Allen Show: Charlie McCarthy Sues for Slander (NBC, 1945)—Edgar Bergen’s wooden alter ego tries to convince a judge Allen stole a hosting job for which McCarthy planned to hire Allen as a sidekick. Also: the Alley denizens discuss postwar jobs for women. The Charlie McCarthy Show orchestra leader Ray Noble and Mortimer Snerd have guest appearances. Herself: Portland Hoffa. Sen. Claghorn/Judge: Kenny Delmar. Titus: Parker Fennelly. Mrs. Nussbaum/Reporter: Minerva Pious. Themselves: McGee & McGee. Announcer: Kenny Delmar. Music: Al Goodman Orchestra, the Five DeMarco Sisters. Writers: Fred Allen, possibly Robert Weiskopf.
Bob & Ray Present the CBS Radio Network: Lawrence Fechtenburger, Yet Again (Yet again, we’re thinking it over, 1959)—The less-than-intrepid interstellar officer candidate (Ray Goulding) fears he won’t be released until he proves he saw little people on Polaris. Also: Playing a new board game called “Disclosure”; and, Clyde L. Halfwatney (Goulding), a network coordinator for northeastern inter-bureau activities. Writers, coordination be damned: Bob Elliott, Ray Goulding.
Fibber McGee & Molly: Driving to the Big Football Game (NBC, 1940)—The usual suspects pile into the crate of the Sap of 79 Wistful Vista (Jim Jordan) for the Notre Dame/Army game, and it’s even money the linemen will survive the crunch more readily than the McGee party. Molly/Teeny: Marian Jordan. Mrs. Uppington: Isabel Randolph. Gildersleeve: Harold Peary. Boomer/Depopolous/The Old-Timer: Bill Thompson. Traffic Cop: Gale Gordon. Announcer: Harlow Wilcox. Music: Billy Mills Orchestra, the King’s Men. Writer: Don Quinn.
The Mel Blanc Show: The Community Chest Fund Drive Show (NBC, 1946)—Mel (Blanc) is interviewed for a newspaper story on the threshold of the big event, Zookie (also Blanc) tries rounding up the refreshments, and mayhem as usual is magnified by the usual sort of help from Bert (The Mad Russian) Gordon. A few more scripts like this and this show might survive more than a single season. Betty: Mary Jane Croft. Mr. Colby: Joseph Kearns. Music: Victor Miller. Director: Joseph Rines. Writer: Mac Benoff.
Our Miss Brooks: The Dancer (CBS, 1950)—Connie (Eve Arden) chafes under doing extra time filling in for Conklin’s (Gale Gordon) short-lived secretaries and his demand she see an optometrist over one typographical error . . . without Ol’ Marblehead walking blind into hiring, shall we say, a dancer for his brother-in-law’s stag party. Mrs. Davis: Jane Morgan. Walter: Richard Crenna. Harriet: Gloria McMillan. Boynton: Jeff Chandler. Mr. Stone: Herb Butterfield. Additional cast: Unidentified. Announcer: Verne Smith. Music: Wilbur Hatch. Writer/director: Al Lewis.
The Whistler: Backfire (CBS, 1946)—A chauffeur (Gerald Mohr) discovers his married lover (possibly Cathy Lewis) no longer loves him after an apparent whirlwind three-month courtship, now that her husband—who hired him directly out of prison a year earlier—returns . . . and asks thim to probe whether the woman’s real paramour was the bandleader at the club where they spent their romantic evenings. Announcer: Marvin Miller. Music: Wilbur Hatch. Director: George W. Allen. Writer: Joel Malone.
The Green Hornet: Exposed (ABC, 1947)—Intrepid young Linda Travis hires on at the Sentinel at the behest of Britt’s (Bob Hall) father, who wants to know his son’s progress, but she takes an inordinate interest in the Green Hornet—leading to a murder investigation, counterfeit Green Hornet seals, and an unexpected discovery about the Hornet himself. Kato: Michael Tolan. Axford: Gil Shea. Additional cast: Unknown. Director: George W. Trendle. Writers: Fran Striker, unknown partners.
Broadway is My Beat: The Lois Burton Murder Case (CBS, 1953)—Stenographer Lois Burton is dead; her frequent employer, a free-lance writer (Lee Millar)—who married an older woman (Paula Winslowe) too much like his late, comforting mother—is a little too agitated over Clover’s (Larry Thor) questions; and, the man’s father (Hy Averback) points Clover to his former girl friend (Mary Jane Croft), who gives Clover more reason to be wary of him. Additional cast: Herb Butterfield. Muggavan: Jack Kruschen. Tartaglia: Charles Calvert. Announcer: Bill Anders. Music: Alexander Courage. Director: Elliott Lewis. Writers: Morton Fine, David Friedkin.
Richard Diamond, Private Detective: The Bill Kirby Murder Case (NBC, 1949)—He’s a private detective Diamond once knew, whose mother (Peggy Webber) wants Diamond (Dick Powell) to learn what’s really going on with her son when his sister discovers a large sum of money in his possession—all in $100 bills—and he leaves Mom a package to be opened later . . . but what’s going on turns out to be her son’s murder and the beating of mother and sister. Additional cast: Wilms Herbert, Stephen Dunn, Bill Johnstone. Levinson: Ed Begley. Helen: Virginia Gregg. Announcer: Ed King. Music: Frank Worth. Director: Richard Sandhill. Writer: Blake Edwards.
Suspense: The Shelter (CBS, 1954)—A teenage girl (Joyce McClusky) aware of an escaped and dangerous mental patient feels safe in the shelter of an isolated bus stop until a gregarious man (Vic Perrin) insists on talking to her—leaving her uncertain whether she’s safer in the bus shelter or out of it. Additional cast: Herb Ellis, Helen Klieb, Dick Ryan, Frank Gerstle. Announcer: Unidentified. Music: . Director: Norman Macdonnell. Writer: Don Yerrill.
Suspense: Death of an Old Flame (CBS, 1961)—It may not be a good idea to help your former wife help her new paramour steal a cache of valuable furs, as pianist Ronnie Warren (Larry Haines) discovers when his ex, Anna (Teri Keane), asks for just that kind of help—without bothering to include a few critical details. Frank: Ralph Bell. Leo: Robert Donley. Girl: Evelyn Juster. Announcer: George Walsh. Music: Norman Paris. Director: Bruno Zirato, Jr. Writer: George Bamber.
Gunsmoke: Dirty Bill’s Girl (CBS, 1956)—A comely woman (Virginia Christine) running a particularly effective traveling poker game vows to settle a score while she’s in town, arousing Matt’s (William Conrad) alarm when Kitty (Georgia Ellis) reveals she’s the daughter of a man murdered over accusations of crooked gambling. Additional cast: Vic Perrin, John Dehner. Doc: Howard McNear. Chester: Parley Baer. Kitty: Georgia Ellis. Announcer: George Fenneman. Music: Rex Khoury. Sound: Ray Kemper, Bill James. Director: Norman Macdonnell. Writer: Les Crutchfield.