Jeff Kallman's excellent The Easy Ace: A Journal of Classic Radio
is a wonderful place to spend hours on end, rediscovering the Golden Age of Radio
as it's meant to be discovered and celebrated. Article after article
is filled with a wonderful new vignette about Golden Age Radio History.
---The Digital Deli Online.

[I]n his matchless on-this-day approach to chronicling “yesteryear,”
he easily aces out a less organized mind like mine,
which promptly lapsed into a more idiosyncratic mode of relating the past.

Sunday, August 02, 2009

It Was Later Than He Thought: The Way It Was, 2 August

Fans of this clever psychological thriller series don't need your servant to remind them the irony in this episode's title---it was the tagline for the earlier Wyllis Cooper creation, Lights Out, which he turned over to Arch Oboler while moving onward to film writing, further radio production (The Army Hour) and, in due course, creating this series . . . which would be compared only too often to Lights Out by, as John Dunning (in On the Air) would phrase it, "people who remembered only that Arch Oboler had written it."

Tonight, however, Cooper gets a kind of psychic revenge with a spellbinder Oboler himself might have been hard pressed to fashion: Lindsay Bradley (Ernest Chappell, who narrates), drafted to World War II, discovers to his astonishment and eventual terror that the gold watch his employers presented him for good luck is only too malleable---he can control time within a twelve-hour timeframe if he sets it forward or backward, but struggles between using this unusual power judiciously and fearing the end of time should the watch become damaged . . . which may be nothing compared to what he faces with the watch when he returns home from the war.

Verna: Abby Lewis. Sergeant: Don Griggs. Additional Cast: Ed Latimer. Music: Albert Berman. Writer/director: Wyllis Cooper.


2004: THE UNHAPPIEST RECAP---Bob Murphy, one third of the original broadcast team of the New York Mets---whose first regular-season broadcast with the new team occurred in the final days of the old-time radio era, and whose "Back with the happy recap" following a Mets win became his trademark---dies at age 79, almost a full year after retiring as a Mets broadcaster.

I’ll say goodbye now to everybody. Stay well out there, wherever you may be. I've enjoyed the relationship with you.

---Bob Murphy, saying farewell to his listeners to conclude his final Mets broadcast, 25 September 2003.

Murphy was inducted into the baseball Hall of Fame as the Frick Award Winner in 1994.

The Mets and the Milwaukee Brewers will pause in Miller Park, the Brewers' home field, for a moment of silence in Murphy's memory, before the game in which the Mets thrashed the Brewers, 12-3.

It's a constant reminder that from dust we come and to dust we shall return, not to be morbid about it. I'm going to miss Bob, but hopefully we'll do a game together in the wild blue yonder somewhere.

---Vin Scully, Radio Hall of Famer and baseball Hall of Famer, remembering Murphy upon the news of his death.

Murphy's death leaves Ralph Kiner---the Hall of Fame outfielder/slugger---as the last living member of the original Mets broadcast team.


GUNSMOKE: RENEGADE WHITE (CBS, 1952)---Matt (William Conrad) and Chester (Parley Baer) aren't that anxious to learn what cynical Orrin Spicer (Harry Bartell) was doing through town when he shot a saloon patron who drew on him---and what a surprise: Spicer's on the payroll of an equally cynical Cheyenne leader (possibly Larry Dobkin) to run guns to the tribe. Additional cast: Herbert Vigran, Jack Kruschen. Music: Rex Koury. Sound: Tom Hanley, Ray Kemper. Writer: John Meston.


1892---John Kieran (panelist: Information, Please), The Bronx.
1900---Helen Morgan (singer: Helen Morgan, Songs; Broadway Melodies; The Fred Allen Show), Danville, Illinois.
1902---Guy Repp (actor: County Seat; Our Secret Weapon), unknown.
1905---Myrna Loy (as Myrna Adele Williams; actress: Lux Radio Theater), Raidersburg, Montana; Ruth Nelson (actress: Arch Oboler's Plays; Columbia Workshop), Saginaw, Michigan.
1912---Ann Dvorak (as Anna McKim; actress: Movietone Radio Theater), New York City.
1915---Gary Merrill (actor: Adventures of Superman); Hartford, Connecticut.
1916---Johnny Coons (actor: Captain Midnight; Sky King; Vic & Sade), Lebanon, Indiana.
1918---Beatrice Straight (actress: Great Scenes From Great Plays; The CBS Radio Mystery Theater), Old Westbury, New York.


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