Friday, February 10, 2012

Philip Marlowe, The Green Lama, The Spider, Jack Benny, Doug Klauba and More! From Radio Archives

February 10, 2012
NEW Radio Set: The Adventures of Philip Marlowe, Volume 4
“Get this and get it straight: crime is a sucker’s road, and those who travel it end up in the gutter, the prison, or the grave...”
Those words opened each episode of The Adventures of Philip Marlowe starring Gerald Mohr in the title role. Although Marlowe had pounded the airwaves prior to this show’s debut in 1948, no one had yet to bring the right power, the right strength, and the right mood to the character. Not until Gerald Mohr lent his voice to author Raymond Chandler’s best known creation, a voice that Chandler, not too happy with other interpretations of his now classic Private Eye, admitted “packed personality.”
Marlowe, clearly cast in the hard-boiled mold of gumshoes and flatfoots originally created in the Pulps by Dashiell Hammett, brought a whole new dimension to the archetype. Tough as nails and hard to kill, Philip Marlowe was also in many ways a modern day knight. This identification of Marlowe as an updated errant hero wandering a dark world saving the lost and fighting off dragons not only continued throughout Chandler’s works, but remains today to be the primary way the character is described by reviewers, fans, and critics.
Even in the face of goons with guns, molls with malice and murder, and a city convoluted with corruption, Marlowe had standards he would follow. This added a great amount of depth to the character and would require an actor with the skills to convey that depth, to show the complexities of a man like Marlowe fighting the evils he’d find on Los Angeles’ mean streets with just his voice. In 1948, Gerald Mohr became that man.
Truly one of the most distinctive voices of old time radio, Mohr’s resonant baritone lent itself well to parts that evoked mood and energy. This nuance is clearly evident in “The Adventures of Philip Marlowe.” Mohr plays Marlowe with all the edge and grit detective fans expect to hear from their heroes. But Mohr also brings a palpable sense of danger smoking just under the surface. Every time Marlowe opens his mouth, Mohr’s delivery is such that listeners have no idea if Marlowe is going to talk or shoot his way out of whatever corner he’s willingly walking into.
This already fantastic collection of Classic Detective shows also comes with incredible new artwork! Pulp Artists extraordinaire Doug Klauba brings Marlowe to visual life with a thrilling scene showing Chandler’s modern day knight in gun blazing action! A print of this great piece can be yours in one of the newest additions to the Pulp Book Store, The Art of Doug Klauba! Get this artwork as a poster in the new store featuring the varied and awesome work of Douglas C Klauba!
Enjoy the energy and danger that Gerald Mohr brings to “The Adventures of Philip Marlowe” in this fourth volume from Radio Archives! Five Hours on Audio CD for only $14.98.
In 1947, a new soap opera debuted in syndication - a drama that was far different than the storm-and-strife ridden weepers that occupied most of the daytime radio schedule. "Claudia" told the tale of Claudia and David Naughton, newlyweds, just beginning their married life. Young, enthusiastic, and very much in love, they weren't suffering from any medical maladies, suspicions of infidelity, or dealing with ungrateful children. Instead, they were simply facing the many challenges of any new marriage - finding an apartment, getting used to each other's quirks, and learning to live together as husband and wife.

Heard today, "Claudia" remains wonderful entertainment, notable for both its light-hearted tone and the believable interplay between its characters. Claudia, a bit younger than her years, is often impulsive, sometimes irresponsible, usually perky, and just a bit flighty. Her father had died when she was still a young girl and, as an only child, had been raised by her widowed mother. As a newlywed who married when she was just eighteen, she occasionally ponders whether she is still a "mama-baby," tied to her mother's apron strings and relying too much on Mama's continuing support and advice. As she matures, she becomes a unique mixture of enthusiasm, incompetence and over-confidence -- deeply in love with her somewhat older husband David, but frequently naive and too likely to trust in her insecurities rather than her instincts.
One of the sad things about radio show preservation is the fact that so many long-running series exist today only in fragments - a broadcast here and a broadcast there, rather than long continuous runs of a particular program. This is particularly the case when it comes to soap operas, where it is difficult to get into a storyline when often so few consecutive episodes exist. Happily, that is not the case with "Claudia"; Radio Archives has been able to locate and preserve the entire eighteen-month run of the series - 390 episodes in all - with no missing shows, allowing you to enjoy the complete series on a day-by-day basis. This eighth collection continues the joys and trials of Claudia and David as they adapt to married life together dealing with many of the same ups and downs their listeners both then and now encounter. And "Claudia Volume 8" can be yours from Radio Archives for $17.98 on Audio CDs!
by Tommy Hancock
Every time I pick something from Radio Archive’s extensive catalog of old time radio offerings to review, I feel like I’m choosing a little piece of history, an artifact from a past that simultaneously seems simpler and more glamorous than our present. This time around, though, I selected a whole day’s worth of history, a slice of life from the day when everyone waited to hear the latest adventures of Amos n’ Andy, sat on the edge of their seats to learn what had become of Pretty Kitty Kelly or the latest on the Affairs of Helen Trent, or to hum along to the music of Louis Prima and his Orchestra. And I do mean from the day. September 21, 1939 to be exact.
WJSV- A Day in Radio History is just what the title says. This true piece of radio history resulted from discussions between staff at WJSV and the National Archives about the importance of preservation of radio programming being presented live at the time. In pursuit of saving at least a hint of what a radio broadcast day was like in that era, recordings were made of a broadcast day at Washington station WJSV and then later put in the annals of the Archives.
It is almost impossible to put into words the experience that is this collection. This 20 CD set literally contains the entire day of September 21, 1939 as broadcast over WJSV. From sign on at 5:58 AM to sign off at 1 AM, every minute of WJSV’s broadcast day is presented at the highest quality in the order that listeners originally heard it 73 years ago.
The breadth of programming is one of the stunning aspects of this. Much like local television stations today, WJSV’s schedule was extremely varied, from serials to news programs to human interest shows to popular comedies and dramas and so on. Similarities in programming also are interesting. We have talent shows ad nauseum today, but listeners of the past were not without them as well. Major Bowes Original Amateur Hour presented acts interested in making the big time, much like contestants on “American Idol” and other shows of its kind. Soap operas, waning in today’s hurry up and wait television market, were the cream of the crop in 1939, with several examples offered in this collection.
History is contained in this set, too. A transcript of a speech by President Franklin Roosevelt, news from all over the world delivered throughout the day, and a sampling of the music of the era, live remotes of big bands from all over the United States. Not to mention rare radio shows that pepper the roster of programs presented by WJSV in the course of its day.
WJSV- A Day in Radio History is a 19-hour set. This may seem daunting to some listeners, but know that it is set up in a way that you can skip to the tracks you’re interested in hearing. This collection is a true gem for people interested in the 1930s, in history, or for creators who need a taste of that period for their work. It’s also an undeniable fantastic tool for researchers interested in not only what a radio station of the era might have played, but also a peek into the technical aspect of how broadcasting was done. All in all, this marvelous collection is well worth having.
The price has been reduced to $39.98 from the previous price of $56.98 and featuring new stunning artwork, WJSV-A Day in History is now presented in a new 20 CD storage case and will make a perfect addition to any collection. Restored to the best audio quality possible, this set is both a significant slice of history and a package that has something for every type of Old Time Radio fan, be they casual or avid.

A more unlikely multi-media success than the jade-robed Buddhist monk who fought crime under the nom de guerre ofThe Green Lama would be hard to imagine.
Conceived in 1939 at the behest of the editors of Munsey Publications to compete with the juggernaut that The Shadow had become in print, on radio and in film, The Green Lama was the creation of writer Kendall Foster Crossen, who was asked to think up a hero who could lure mystery-minded readers away from The Shadow’s loyal legion of followers. Inspired by a Columbia University student named Theos Casimir Barnard, who had journeyed to far-off Tibet to plumb the occult mysteries of Lamaism, Crossen concocted millionaire Jethro Dumont, who did the same.
It was an outlandish concept. While The Shadow possessed the power to cloud men’s minds after his time in the East, The Green Lama relied on other, even weirder, powers—including the ability to become radioactive and electrically shock opponents into submission! He carried a traditional scarf, which he employed to bind and befuddle opponents and possessed a knowledge of vulnerable nerve centers which he put to good use in hand-and-hand combat. Being a practicing Buddhist, it would not do to pack a pair of .45 automatics a la The Shadow!
Writing as Richard Foster, Crossen produced The Case of the Crimson Hand, which was published in the April, 1940 Double Detective under the equally colorful title, The Green Lama. That first installment raised the magazine’s circulation several notches. Amazingly, the Lama was a hit. Thirteen additional stories followed over the next four years, with provocative titles like The Case of the Hollywood Ghost and Babies for Sale. Assistants ranging from ordinary Manhattanites to a professional magician came and went with every adventure, which often involved emerging super-criminals and Fifth Column menaces. has selected The Green Lama to be the first 2012 release in its acclaimed Will Murray Pulp Classics line of audiobooks. His first case and its sequel, Croesus of Murder, are presented in one set, voiced by the talented Michael McConnohie. Thus, the hero of a dozen different incarnations has found a new world to conquer! You’ll never encounter another hero anything like him. Om Mani Padme Hum! The Green Lama knows! Will Murray’s Audio Pulp Classics #5 The Green Lama is available now!
The Green Lama, by Kendell Foster Crossen, first appeared in the April 1940 issue of Double-Detective magazine. Copyright © 1940 by The Red Star News Company. Copyright renewed © 1968 and assigned to Argosy Communications, Inc. All Rights Reserved. “The Green Lama” is a trademark controlled by Argosy Communications, Inc. Produced by arrangement with Argosy Communications, Inc.
One of the most interesting experiences a fan of any character from the printed medium can have is that first time he or she sees or hears someone portraying their favorite character. We all have in our heads how our treasured heroes will look if we ever see them on the screen, who should play them, and also how they’ll sound. The more we read a particular canon of stories, the more those voices start coming to life in our heads, right down to the way the villain will snarl his words or the leading lady will coo in the ear of our masked avenger. I am no different. As a matter of fact, I’m probably the hardest judge on movies and audio performances of characters I absolutely loved to read about. I go into new projects that add voices to stories I have thrilled to in the past with at the least trepidation, if not downright cynicism.
Boy, I love it when someone puts together a package that proves me wrong.
The Spider: Prince of the Red Looters, a Will Murray’s Pulp Classic Audiobook produced by Roger Rittner Productions takes one of the most intriguing, over the top protagonists from classic Pulp fiction and brings him and the carnage and chaos around him to full bloody, violent, justice seeking life.
Pulp Fans are of course familiar with the Spider, Norvell Page’s Master of Men. Secretly millionaire criminologist Richard Wentworth, The Spider was perhaps the most violent pursuer of Right the Pulps ever had. He performed his duty of seeking justice and punishing the guilty with the veracity of a rabid dog. And his enemies matched him step for step, often littering the streets of New York with body after body in story after story. Capturing the frenetic pacing of these stories and especially the wildly mad, nearly insane personality of The Spider, teetering often it seemed at the very edge of his own abyss, would be no easy chore for any Production company or crew of actors. I’m glad to say that Producer/Director Roger Rittner and company took on Prince of Red Looters and the result is simply amazing.
Featuring the first appearance of The Spider’s nemesis The Fly, this enhanced audiobook explodes into stunning dialogue, fantastic sound effects, and a rousing musical score almost instantly. The voice talents of Nick Santa Maria as narrator and all the male parts and Robin Riker as Nita Van Sloan nailed the characters in both tone and delivery. Regardless if Santa Maria is firing off silky missives as The Fly, delivering staccato threats of death to the evil as The Spider, or playing one of many mooks, thugs, and passers by, his turns of voice give this the semblance of a full cast production. Add the sultry dulcet voice of Robin Riker as Nita, a great compliment to Santa Maria’s take on the Spider, and you have the best voices to bring Page’s fevered adventures to audio.
As far as other aspects of this audiobook, Roger Rittner does a wonderful job, top notch throughout the book, of maintaining the pacing of the original Pulp tale. And the ways he does this are myriad, including the use of great music, the inclusion of sound effects, and the speed and clip and which the narration and dialogue are delivered. All of this blends together into a sort of perfect storm for an audiobook and makes The Spider: Prince of the Red Looters a definite shining light in the already awesome line of Will Murray’s Pulp Classics! And you too can swing along with The Spider today by buying The Spider: Prince of the Red Looters for only $19.98 on Audio CDs.
Bringing the best of Classic Pulp to Fans today, Radio Archives presents Will Murray’s Pulp Classic’s line of top notch Pulp Fiction eBooks!  And you will now be able to find eBooks on as one of the buttons on the left!  Looking for the best in eBooks!  Click the button and you’ll go right to Will Murray’s Pulp Classics!
New to Will Murray’s Pulp Classics, two new eBooks featuring the epic exploits of America’s best-loved pulp-fiction character of the 1930s and 1940s: The Spider — Master of Men!
Richard Wentworth — the dread Spider, nemesis of the Underworld, lone wolf anti-crime crusader who always fights in that grim no-man’s land between Law and lawless — returns in vintage pulp tales of the Spider, reissued for today’s readers in electronic format.
These exciting pulp adventures have been beautifully reformatted for easy reading as an eBook and feature the original full color cover. Will Murray’s Pulp Classics line of eBooks are of the highest quality and feature the great Pulp Fiction stories of the 1930s-1950s.
Three times that night death struck at Richard Wentworth before he learned his foeman’s name — the yellow-skinned Wang Ba! Wentworth — who, as the relentless Spider, is the scourge of the Underworld — wagers his skill and bravery against the sly treachery of the Orient, with the lives of a hundred thousand Americans depending on the evil coquetry of a dangerously beautiful woman!
Never had Richard Wentworth — he who is the scourge of the Underworld in his guise of the Spider — faced such tremendous odds or been so alone in the strife! And the Master of Madness, chief of a powerful, fiendish syndicate, was spreading his germs of mania unchecked. Who could rescue America from screaming, murderous frenzy when the Spider, harried by Law and lawless, himself half-doubted his own skill and bravery?
As a special Bonus, Will Murray has written “Meet the Spider” especially for this series of eBooks.
All eBooks produced by Radio Archives are available in ePub, Mobi, and PDF formats for the ultimate in compatibility. When you purchase this eBook from you receive all three formats in one ZIP file: PDF for PC or Mac computer; Mobi for Kindle; and ePub for iPad/IPhone, Android, Sony eReader, and Nook. When you upgrade to a new eReader, you can transfer your eBook novels to your new device without the need to purchase anything new.
Fight alongside the Master of Men as the Spider takes on Evil in these two latest Ebooks from Will Murray’s Pulp Classics, only $2.99 each!  And remember, click the eBooks button on the left of the homepage for the best digital offerings anywhere from Radio Archives!
Special eBook Announcement! As of today, all Radio Archives eBooks are available at the Kindle Store.
The Pulp Book Store now features the work of an artist considered to be one of the modern masters of Pulp and Classic Action Adventure Art. Doug Klauba, known for his work on covers for companies such as Moonstone, Radio Archives, and more, has brought fan favorite characters, such as Johnny Dollar, Philip Marlowe, and others to life with his fantastic paintings! And now you can own prints of some of Doug’s best work and even purchase original art from this modern Pulp Artist!
The Art of Doug Klauba will first feature posters of paintings of three of Classic Radio’s best known, greatest detective heroes! 12 X 18” posters of Johnny Dollar from “Yours Truly, Johnny Dollar,” Dan Holiday from “Box Thirteen”, and Philip Marlowe from “The Adventures of Philip Marlowe” are available for $19.98 each! Done in a style reminiscent of classic Pulp Magazine covers and painted movie posters, these prints will make a perfect addition to any Radio, Pulp, or Detective Fan’s wall and collection! Thrill to the visual excitement that is The Art of Doug Klauba! Now available in the Pulp Book Store!
Dedicated to keeping the memory and work of one of History’s greatest comedic talents alive, The International Jack Benny Fan Club (IJBFC) joins the Pulp Book Store! The IJBFC offers 39 Forever Volume 3, a book written by Laura Leff and Martin Gostonian! Just released, this third volume covers Jack Benny’s television career from his debut in 1950 until his self-titled series ended in 1965! Each show is written up with full indexes of cast members, cities, musical artists, skits, and songs included.
This 826 page volume is a wonderful resource for Benny fans, but also anyone interested in the Golden Age of Television. It outlines how the show went from being Benny’s transition from radio to the top of the ratings and shows why Benny’s legacy has endured! The IJBFC brings a definite classic performer and this definitive work on his awesome career to the right place by becoming a part of The Pulp Book Store!
Well known for the quality Pulp Replicas, authentic reproductions of original Pulp Magazines, Girasol Collectables adds three new Replicas to the Pulp Book Store!
Thrill to the gun blazing justice seeking adventures of the Master of men in The Spider #77 featuring ‘Hell’s Sale Manager!’ Originally printed in February 1940, this replica is now available for $35.00!
Also, discover exotic locales, femme fatales, and more in the Replica of Spicy Adventures #11, originally published in August 1935, for $25.00!
Finally encounter strange events, terrifying creatures, and the unknown in Weird Tales #18. First printed in March 1925, this wonderful Replica is only $35.00!
Girasol Collectables produces the finest in Pulp Reproductions! And you can find their Replicas as well as other products in the Pulp Book Store!
The Knight of Darkness battles evil supercriminals in two action-packed pulp novels by Walter Gibson writing as “Maxwell Grant.” First, in a never-reprinted 1932 epic, The Shadow seeks to unmask The Five Chameleons, master villains whose uncanny ability to blend with their surroundings rivals his own. Then, the Dark Avenger feels the savage sting of The Wasp in his first confrontation with one of his deadliest foes. This double-novel reprints the classic cover paintings by George Rozen and Graves Gladney and the original interior illustrations by Tom Lovell and Earl Mayan, with historical articles by Will Murray. Get it now for $14.95!
The pulp era’s greatest superman returns in two classic pulp thrillers by Lester Dent writing as “Kenneth Robeson.” First, Doc and Patricia Savage enter an Arctic abyss where dinosaurs and prehistoric humans survive, and race against Japanese agents to uncover the secret of The Time Terror that could change the outcome of the war. Then, a series of crimes committed by “graduates” of the Man of Bronze’s Crime College threaten to destroy Doc’s reputation. What is the sinister secret of The Talking Devil? This special collectors edition showcases both color pulp covers by Emery Clarke, Paul Orban’s classic interior illustrations and historical commentary by Will Murray, writer of eight Doc Savage novels. Yours for only $14.95!
The double life of Police Commissioner James Gordon is explored in a pair of two-fisted thrillers that inspired classic Batman stories! First, The Whisperer goes undercover to close down a “School for Murder” that prepares teenagers for criminal careers! Then, Wildcat Gordon investigates corruption in the trucking industry in “Murder on the Line.” BONUS: an adventure of Norgil the Magician by The Shadow’s Maxwell Grant! This historic collector’s item showcases both original color pulp covers by Spider artist John Newton Howitt, classic interior illustrations by Paul Orban and golden-age great Creig Flessel, and historical commentary by Will Murray and Anthony Tollin. Now at Radio Archives for $14.95!

Pulp fiction's legendary Master of Men returns in two classic novels from the Golden Age of Pulp Fiction, written by Norvell Page under the pseudonym of Grant Stockbridge. First, in "Overlord of the Damned" (October 1935), the Boss unleashes horrible death with his demonic acid guns... with a vat of the same deadly corrosive reserved for those who talk too much! With his beloved Nita van Sloan a hostage to a terrible doom, the Spider faces the soul-tearing prospect of planting the Spider seal on his friend Stanley Kirkpatrick, Commissioner of Police! Then, in "Dictator's Death Merchants!" (July 1940), The jaws of death gape open when El Crocodilo feasts! With uncanny skill, he forestalls even the Spider's best attempts to trap him. Striking without mercy, this menace from the past rises anew by demolishing a banking institution each night, in a mad scheme to take control of nothing less than all of America's finances! This volume is available in two editions and features the original artwork from the October 1935 or the July 1940 edition of "The Spider" magazine. Both versions feature reformatted text and original interior illustrations to accompany each story. Available now for $14.95!
Looking for more than Love this February? How about the best deals in the Pulp Book Store! Check out the specials being offered by these companies!
The greatest Minds of the 19th Century go to battle with the most evil forces known to man! Buy Modern Marvels: Viktoriana by Wayne Reinagel and get 5% off the regular price for the entire month of February!
The Lord of the Vampires Returns and you can get him for 20% off original price. Dracula Lives by Joshua Reynolds is a page turning chill ride and can be yours at a steal!
Puttin’ The Monthly Back into Pulp, Pro Se Productions offers the finest in modern Pulp Magazines! For the month of February, pick up any or all of the first three issues of Pro Se Presents at an amazing 25% off each copy!
Just click on the Treasure Chest on the Pulp Book Store Page for these great offers! From everyone from the avid Pulp Fan to the casual reader, the Treasure Chest offers great deals on wonderful products from The Pulp Book Store!
By John Olsen
Shadow Over Alcatraz was published in the December 1, 1938 issue of The Shadow Magazine. Yes, Alcatraz - The Rock! This is the repository of America’s most dangerous criminals, a concentrated population of the world’s most sinister masterminds. Where better to find lieutenants for the most devious mastermind of all time! Alcatraz, where America’s most hidden mastercriminal will recruit his evil henchmen for a plot to create a world-wide crime spree.
It all starts in Denver, Colorado, where eccentric old inventor Harvey Lanyon is demonstrating his latest invention. He calls himself “The Rainmaker” because he’s created a machine that will end droughts. Or so he thinks. But the invention is a failure; all it does is create a fog. And what good is fog? None, except to that hidden mastermind known as Zanigew. Zanigew has sinister plans for the fog machine. So he sets out to capture Harvey Lanyon and appropriate Lanyon’s invention.
So exactly who is Zanigew and what is he up to? Can even The Shadow stop this cunning genius of crime? Zanigew plans crime such as has never before been known; an empire of evil that will stretch throughout the world! It will take the power of The Shadow to stop him. And it will make an adventure that ranks among the very best among the 325 Shadow magazine stories published. It’s one you won’t want to miss.
Assisting The Shadow in this story are Harry Vincent and F.B.I. agent Vic Marquette. Also appearing in smaller roles are Burbank and pilot Miles Crofton. The Shadow appears only as himself, Kent Allard. There’s no sign of his famous disguises here.
The Shadow does appear in disguise, once, as an unnamed adventurous Easterner who bears little resemblance to Kent Allard. We are told that when he removes the putty-like makeup on his face, the gaunt countenance of Kent Allard emerges. No mention of the “horror face” beneath the makeup that was mentioned in early Shadow novels. Perhaps there was a little judicious plastic surgery performed in the intervening years?
It’s good to see The Shadow’s autogiro make an appearance in this story. It plays a pivotal part in the climax to the story. This is the “new, improved” autogiro that is completely wingless, capable of making a speed of one hundred and twenty miles an hour. Generally, autogiros were considered to have wings, so this must have been closer to the modern helicopter than an autogiro.
And one final note. Did you know that The Shadow can squeeze through steel bars only seven inches apart? It’s not easy, but he accomplishes it in this story. Maybe he can dislocate some joints, somewhat like escape-artist Harry Houdidi was reputed to do. Get out a ruler and look at seven inches. That’s not much space. I’m surprised he could get his head through! Unless... (no, let’s not go there.)
This is one of the classic Shadow stories. It’s one of the top rated stories. 

And it along with another Shadow tale is in The Shadow Volume 16 for $12.95 from Radio Archives!

Comments From Our Customers!
Lon Levy:
Thank you! Please continue until the entire run of THE SPIDER has been released as eBooks. (I don't have room for any more of the paper editions!)
Allan Smith from England:
Well Tom, I for one am with you all the way, as your products are A1 CLASS items as far as I am concerned. Items, as usual, are a delight. i look forward to sitting, reading and listening for a couple of weeks ahead with great pleasure. thank you once again from windy, wet and cold England.
If you'd like to share a comment with us or if you have a question or a suggestion send an email to We'd love to hear from you!

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