Black Museum was 1951 crime drama series that featured Orson Welles as the narrator. The show’s format basically involved Welles picking up murder artifacts stored in the Black Museum, and then telling the horrendous story behind it. The idea for the show was derived from London’s Crime Museum, which holds a large collection of murder and other crime artifacts. Since the crime museum was never really available to the public, through Black Museum, nevertheless, the listeners were able to get a glimpse on what can be found inside the said museum. Each episode of Black Museum was based on real crime stories.
The show was initially thought to be produced by BBC, although it was later found out that it first aired on Radio Luxembourg before it was heard in English-speaking nations.
The Falcon radio series premiered on the Blue Network on April 10, 1943, continuing on NBC and Mutual until November 27, 1954. Some 70 episodes were produced.
“Drexel Drake” (a pseudonym of Charles H. Huff) created Michael Waring, alias the Falcon, a free-lance investigator and troubleshooter, in his 1936 novel, The Falcon’s Prey. It was followed by two more novels (The
Falcon Cuts In, 1937 and The Falcon Meets a Lady, 1938) and a 1938 short story. In 1941, RKO made a movie, The Gay Falcon, based on a 1940 short story, “Gay Falcon,” by Michael Arlen, rechristening Arlen’s Gay Stanhope Falcon as Gay Lawrence aka the Falcon. It became a film series, and its popularity led eventually to the radio series. No explanation for the nickname was ever mentioned in any of the dramatizations. The Michael Waring Falcon was also the hero in three late 1940s movies starring John Calvert, and a television series starring Charles McGraw.
The Fat Man, a popular radio show during the 1940s and early 1950s was a detective drama based on characters by Dashiell Hammett. It starred J. Scott Smart in the title role, as a detective who started out anonymous but rapidly acquired the name ‘Brad Runyon’.
Broadcast from the studios of WJZ in Newark, New Jersey, the series premiered on the ABC Radio Network on Monday, January 21, 1946, at 8:30pm, as part of a block of four new programs (I Deal in Crime, Forever Tops, and Jimmy Gleason’s Diner). Based on Dashiell Hammett’s fiction, The Fat Man was further developed by producer, E.J. (“Mannie”) Rosenberg. The program was directed by Clark Andrews, creator of Big Town, and Charles Powers. The main writer was Richard Ellington, with other scripts by Robert Sloane and Lawrence Klee.