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Original Defense Attorney header art

Defense Attorney Radio Program

Dee-Scription: Home >> D D Too Home >> Radio Logs >> Defense Attorney

March 6th 1952 spot ad for Defense Attorney over KSIX

March 6th 1952 spot ad for Defense Attorney over KSIX

Defense Attorney's Sponsors:


Goodyear Tire and Rubber logo from 1944


Clorets circa 1951


Kix circa 1952


Background

The Scales of Justice were a far more idealized concept throughout the Golden Age of Radio. And before we get too caught up in this notion of idealization, we'll stipulate that between the 1920s and 1960s, several groups of citizens still fell between the cracks even then. That having been said, there remains a vast chasm of differences between the ideals of 'justice' in 1951 and 2011. America was a vastly different society in 1951. We were indeed at War, but as with World War II, the Korean Conflict was an entirely different concept in 1951 than our 21st Century Wars in the Middle East. Americans were still connected to the combatants of Wars of 1917 to 1953. All Americans were invested in those wars through the concept of transcription, War Bonds, Savings Bonds, and increased taxes to fund War and its resultant economic impact. As in the increasingly trite concept of today, all Americans had some 'skin in the game.' That's no longer the case. Nor is there any expectation that will recur anytime soon. Today only the poor and the middle class have any skin in our wars abroad. Those in power today believe its the right of the wealthy and powerful to escape all necessary sacrifice in time of war or economic downturn. The notion of shared sacrifice was a guiding principle from the Great Depression through the Korean Conflict. Today, shared sacrifice simply means 'those who can't afford college make the ultimate sacrifice by going to War, and those who can afford college, share in the rewards of a college education.' Those 'let them eat cake' false choices permeate every level of American society but the top levels today. The contrasts are stark indeed.

Justice in all other aspects of society between the Golden Age era and the 21st Century differ in much the same degree by comparison. Defense attorneys of the 1940s and 1950s clung to their ideals far longer. Much as neighborhood family physicians and country lawyers and doctors felt about their respective professions, the ideals they swore to uphold through their respective oaths actually meant something to them then. Those oaths were as sacred to them as their religions of choice. Those professions were as much a calling as that of teachers, nurses, police, or firemen. As with everything else that money, greed, and power have tainted during the intervening sixty years, the worship of money and possessions in America were still aberrations sixty years ago. Those characteristics were at the furthest fringes of any bell curve of the era. Today they're no longer aberrations--they're commonplace. It's the 'Four Freedoms idealists,' anachronists, and Golden Rule adherents that are the outliers of today.

That may help to inform the popularity of court room dramas during the Golden Ages of both Radio and Television. Well written, fairly resolved, even-handed, and just outcomes in courtroom and crime dramas of the era invariably found the greatest popularity. Even the hundreds of variants of morality plays of the era like The Whistler were a direct reflection of the legacy--and example--of America's Greatest Generation. When courtroom dramas transitioned to Television they found an even greater and more loyal audience. Golden Age of Television classics like Perry Mason and The Defenders both entertained and reinforced America's notions of fair play and justice.

But it was the numerous courtroom dramas over Radio that paved the way for the unprecedented success of the genre over Television:

  • 1936-1949 Famous Jury Trials
  • 1938 Attorney At Law
  • 1938 Her Honor, Nancy James
  • 1939-1952 Mr. District Attorney
  • 1944 American Woman's Jury
  • 1945 Jonathan Brixton, Attorney for the Defense
  • 1947 Did Justice Triumph
  • 1947 Lawyer Q
  • 1947 Murder and Mr. Malone
  • 1947-1955 Perry Mason
  • 1948 True Legal Dramas
  • 1951 Defense Attorney
  • 1952 Frontier Town

As must be apparent from the above sampling, courtroom dramas or their derivatives of the era came in all flavors. But the underlying precepts were invariably the same. Indeed, the voluntary codes of compliance adhered to by the Networks of the era virtually ensured that the outcomes of legal dramas of the era would resolve themselves in an even-handed and uplifting manner. The fact that there was little push back against those long-standing guidelines simply underscores the perceptions, expectations and comparative wholesomeness of the era--by producers and audiences alike. Mr. District Attorney was far and away the most popular and long-lived of the courtroom drama derivatives of the era. But when Mr. District Attorney began signaling that it might be finally winding down, the American Broadcasting Company (ABC) saw a potential opening for a fresher, more novel approach to a legal drama--one from NBC.

ABC debuts Mercedes McCambridge in Defense Attorney

It was NBC that ordered an audition for the proposed courtroom drama The Defense Rests, starring Oscar winner Mercedes McCambridge. Written by Cameron Blake and directed by Dwight Hauser, the audition starred Mercedes McCambridge as Defense Attorney Martha Ellis Bryant, and featured Sheldon Leonard, John Stevenson, Tony Barrett, and Peter Leeds in supporting roles. The audition laid down some of Miss Bryant's background then launched into The Case of Joseph Moriano, a convicted murderer who'd spent twelve years in prison for that murder. The audition was reportedly recorded on April 17th, 1951.

NBC apparently agreed to green-light the proposed program until as late as mid-June of 1951. In what can only be assumed to be a last minute change, the American Broadcasting Company (ABC) acquired the production from NBC, renaming it simply Defense Attorney. As evidence of the last minute change, several promotional articles for The Defense Rests as well as announcements of The Defense Rests appeared as late as the premiere date of Defense Attorney. Apparently the newspapers of the era were as confused as we are sixty years later.

Mercedes McCambridge snapshot bio from 1952's Who's Who In Radio and Television
Mercedes McCambridge snapshot bio from 1952's Who's Who In Radio
and Television

Defense Attorney premiered on July 6th, 1951 as a weekly half-hour, Friday night feature over ABC. The first sixty-seven episodes were performed and recorded at ABC's KECA Studios in Hollywood. Mercedes McCambridge was pregnant with her second child--her first with director-producer husband Fletcher Markle--during the first thirty episodes of Defense Attorney. She'd apparently been pregnant during NBC's The Defense Rests audition in mid-April 1951 as well.

From the September 14th, 1951 edition of the Galveston News:

Couples Should Have Children

Radio, Film Star Offers Advice


     HOLLYWOOD. Sept. 13. (UP)—Film and radio star Mercedes McCambridge said today every couple ought to have children.
     "Even working girls." she said.  'Having a baby shouldn't interfere with a career."
     Miss McCambridge, who off-screen is the wife of Hollywood director Fletcher Markle, is working in maternity dresses herself these days.  The blessed event—a girl, she hopes, to give son John, 9, a baby sister—is due for the Christmas holidays.
     Marlene Dietrich will be godmother and author J. D. Salinger (New Yorker) will be asked to be godfather.
              
IS BOTHERED
     The problem of what a mother-to-be should wear around Hollywood to keep in competition with the glamour girls bothered Mercedes at first.
     She has to be around the big radio studios where she's heard Friday nights over ABC's national network in "Defense Attorney."  And she just recorded a ballad, "While You Danced," for Decca.  That recording session jangled her nerves.
     "I walked in, took a look at the orchestra and the 14 people in the chorus and groaned 'Oh. my gosh, they'll take one look at me and die laughin.'  Then I took another look at that chorus.  Three gals in the front row were pregnant."
              
JUGS ENSEMBLE
     Confidence restored, she later whipped up a nice ensemble built around a brown satin house robe "no buttons," she said, "for expansion purposes."  She cut the skirt off 14 inches from the floor to make a dress out of it and girdled it with a wide-leather belt studded with gold medallions.
     "This big old belt," she said, "when it gets too small I get bigger ones.  I bought a whole bunch of belts.
     I maybe can't work on the screen like this," she said.  "But the audience can't see me on radio.  And when those last two months roll around . . . well, I think I got a book I'm going to write."
              
OTHERS CAN
     And if Mercedes can juggle career and babies, she thinks other career gals can. too.
     "Every two people in the world can afford to have a child," she said.  "You know, everybody has a streak of loneliness in them.  Like F. Scott Fitzgerald said, in the dark corners of the soul, it is always three o'clock in the morning.
     "Loneliness is one major motivating factor of mankind. 

     "And the only way to combat it is to be needed by somebody.  And nobody can get through to warm that little part like kids, because they need you.  They have to have you.

It would seem that the news of the new arrival made a return to Radio in a recurring leading role the perfect choice for McCambridge during her pregnancy. Sadly, the couple lost their first baby together on February 1st 1952. Mercedes McCambridge's baby had been almost a month overdue at the time. Miss McCambridge's understandable reticence to continue performing shaped a great deal of her acting decisions for the subsequent year.

Shortly after Defense Attorney premiered over Radio its producers were approached to take the franchise to Television as well. And indeed over the next three years Miss McCambridge continued to hold out the possibility of a Television version of Defense Attorney. It would appear that the long-proposed Television version of Defense Attorney was eventually abandoned by all parties.

Series Derivatives:

AFRS
Genre: Anthology of Golden Age Radio Crime Dramas
Network(s): NBC [Audition]; ABC; The AFRS
Audition Date(s) and Title(s): 51-04-17 The Defense Rests -- Joseph Moriano
Premiere Date(s) and Title(s): 51-07-06 01 Title Unknown
Run Dates(s)/ Time(s): 51-07-06 to 52-12-30; ABC [KECA, WJZ]; Seventy five, 30-minute programs; Friday evenings, then Thursday evenings, then Tuesday evenings
Syndication:
Sponsors: Clorets; Kix; Goodyear
Director(s): Dwight Hauser
Principal Actors: [NBC Audition]
Mercedes McCambridge, Sheldon Leonard, John Stevenson, Tony Barrett, Peter Leeds
[ABC Run]
Mercedes McCambridge, Howard Culver, Parley Baer, Howard McNear, Tony Barrett, Tom McKee, Joel Nessler, George Pirrone, Lawrence Dobkin, Bill Johnstone, Harry Bartell, Betty Mills, Dallas McKinnon, Paul Frees, Barney Phillips, Irene Tedrow
Recurring Character(s): Martha Ellis 'Marty' Bryant, Esq., Attorney at Law [ Mercedes McCambridge ]; Judson 'Jud' Barnes [ Howard Culver ]; Lt. Ed Ledes [ Tony Barrett ]
Protagonist(s): None
Author(s): None
Writer(s) Joel Murcott, Cameron Blake, Jack Spiers
Music Direction: Basil 'Buzz' Adlam [Audition]
Rex Koury [ABC run]
Musical Theme(s): Unknown
Announcer(s): Don Stanley [Audition];
Orville Anderson
Estimated Scripts or
Broadcasts:
75
Episodes in Circulation: 13
Total Episodes in Collection: 6
Provenances:

RadioGOLDINdex, Hickerson Guide, Loyola University Women and Leadership Collection.

Notes on Provenances:

The most helpful provenances were the log of the RadioGOLDINdex and newspaper listings.

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Defense Attorney Radio Program Log

Date Episode Title Avail. Notes
51-04-17
[Aud]
The Defense Rests:
The Case of Joseph Moriano
Y
[NBC Audition; The closing credits announce that Mercedes McCambridge was appearing in the The Scarf, "currently having its premiere at the Park Avenue Theater in New York." The Scarf premiered on April 6th 1951]


51-06-10 Cedar Rapids Gazette
By Nadine Subotnlk:
MORE of the programs that will carry radio along for the summer are being announced. And spotted among them are a number of new shows that have promise.
On NBC there-will be debuts for:
A Mercedes McCambridge series titled "The Defense Rests",
a Judy Holliday comedy stint, a new Harry McNaughton stanza titled "It's Higgins, Sir", a Louis Calhern series titled "American Portrait", a Rex Harrison stint and "You Can't Take It with You".

51-06-29
--
--
51-07-06
1
Title Unknown
N
[Premiere; Replaces Richard Diamond for the summer]

51-07-06 Wisconsin State Journal
7 p.m.--Defense Attorney (WISC):
new series starring Mercedes McCambridge.

51-07-06 The Chester Times
8:00 p.m.—WFJL—
The Defense Rests, another new program, a drama with Mercedes McCambridge.

51-07-06 San Antonio Light
Mercedes McCambridge, film star and radio and TV actress, will appear in a new dramatic presentation, Defense Attorney, which will make its initial appearance on KABC at 7 pm. Friday. Miss McCambridge will have the role of a successful young woman attorney.

51-07-06 Winona Republican-Herald
New Radio Show Starts Tonight Mercedes McCambridge, one of radio's best known actresses in addition to being a film star, will make her debut in a new dramatic presentation, Defense Attorney, tonight at 7 o'clock over ABC and KWNO. The distinguished young actress is returning to radio in the role of a successful young female attorney. The series will be written by two well-known
writers, Joel Murcott and Cameron Blake. The broadcast will be directed by Dwight Hauser with accompanying music by Basil Adlam. Miss McCambridge won Hollywood's most distinguished award when she received an "Oscar" for her brilliant performance in the hit motion picture, "All the King's Men."
51-07-13
2
Title Unknown
N
51-07-08 Amarillo News-Globe
NOTHING SUCCEEDS LIKE
SUCCESS. Mercedes McCambridge
stars in DEFENSE ATTORNEY, a new dramatic scries heard at 7, Friday nights on KFDA. The series tells the story of a successful young female attorney. But no matter how successful the Portia in the tale, she couldn't possibly touch Miss McCambridge herself, who recently won the Academy Award for her work in "All the King's Men." DEFENSE ATTORNEY
takes the place of RICHARD DIAMOND, since Dick Powell's illness caused his withdrawal from radio activities.

51-07-13 Wisconsin State Journal
7 p.m.--Defense Attorney (WISC): Mercedes McCambridge
clears woman accused of murder.
51-07-20
3
Title Unknown
N
51-07-20 Wisconsin State Journal
WISC 7:00 Defense Attorney
51-07-27
4
Title Unknown
N
51-07-27 Wisconsin State Journal
7 p.m.--Defense Attorney (WISC): Mercedes McCambridge in
story of shipboard murder.
51-08-03
5
Title Unknown
N
51-08-03 Wisconsin State Journal
WISC 7:00 Defense Attorney

51-08-03 Portsmouth Times
8 p.m.—ABC; Crusading woman attorney Martha Ellis Bryant, portrayed by Academy Award winner Mercedes McCambridge, is confronted with one of her
greatest challenges on "Defense Attorney".
Crux of the mystery is a shipboard murder in which an amnesia victim is No. 1 suspect.
51-08-10
6
Client Marcus Moriano
N
[Utilizes the script from the NBC Audition of The Defense Rests]

51-08-10 Wisconsin State Journal
WISC 7:00 Defense Attorney
51-08-17
7
Client Peter Lynch
N
51-08-17 Wisconsin State Journal
WISC 7:00 Grid Closeups.

51-08-17 New York Times
8:00-WJZ--Play: Defense Attorney, With Mercedes McCambridge
51-08-24
8
Client Grady Daniels
N
51-08-24 Wisconsin State Journal
WISC 7:00 Defense Attorney
51-08-31
9
Client Mike Pelley
Y
51-08-31 Wisconsin State Journal
WISC 7:00 Defense Attorney

51-08-31 La Crosse Tribune
Mercedes McCambridge stars as a young lady "Defense Attorney" of determined disposition from 7 to 7:30.
Miss McCambridge announced at a program rehearsal the other night incidentally, that none other than Marlene Dietrich had agreed to become godmother for her new child — expected around Christmastime.

Features Howard McNear as Mike Pelley and Barney Phillips as the Special Policeman. Mercedes McCambridge sings.
51-09-07
10
Title Unknown
N
51-09-07 Wisconsin State Journal
WISC 7:00 Defense Attorney
51-09-14
11
Client Jimmy Leonard
Y
51-09-14 Wisconsin State Journal
7 p.m.--Defense Attorney (WISC):
Mercedes McCambridge clears young hot-rod driver.

51-09-14 Gastonia Gazette
A frightened teenage boy is accused of manslaughter in a hit-and-run hot rod accident, and his protestations of innocence nre seemingly in vain until Mercedes McCambrldie decides to take his case on "Defense Attorney" tonight over the ABC radio network and WGNC. Gastonia, at 8 p, m. Miss McCambrldge portrays Martha Ellis Bryant, crusading woman attorney, whose professional practice is dedicated to the liberation of the wrongly accused.
51-09-21
12
Title Unknown
N
51-09-21 Wisconsin State Journal
WISC 7:00 Defense Attorney
51-09-28
13
Title Unknown
N
51-09-28 Wisconsin State Journal
WISC 7:00 Defense Attorney





51-10-04
14
Title Unknown
N
51-10-04 Wisconsin State Journal
7 p.m.--Defense Attorney (WISC): Mercedes McCambridge
on new schedule.
51-10-11
15
Title Unknown
N
51-10-11 Wisconsin State Journal
WISC 7:00 Defense Attorney
51-10-18
16
Title Unknown
N
51-10-18 Wisconsin State Journal
WISC 7:00 Defense Attorney
51-10-25
17
Title Unknown
N
51-10-25 Wisconsin State Journal
WISC 7:00 Defense Attorney
51-11-01
18
Title Unknown
N
51-11-01 Wisconsin State Journal
WISC 7:00 Defense Attorney
51-11-08
19
Title Unknown
N
51-11-08 Wisconsin State Journal
WISC 7:00 Defense Attorney
51-11-15
20
Title Unknown
N
51-11-15 Wisconsin State Journal
WISC 7:00 Defense Attorney
51-11-22
21
Title Unknown
N
51-11-22 Wisconsin State Journal
WISC 7:00 Defense Attorney
51-11-29
22
Title Unknown
N
51-11-29 Wisconsin State Journal - WISC 7:00 Defense Attorney
51-12-06
23
Title Unknown
N
51-12-06 Wisconsin State Journal - WISC 7:00 Defense Attorney
51-12-13
24
Title Unknown
N
51-12-13 Wisconsin State Journal - WISC 7:00 Defense Attorney
51-12-20
25
Title Unknown
N
51-12-20 Wisconsin State Journal - WISC 7:30 Defense Attorney
51-12-27
26
Title Unknown
N
51-12-24 Evening Independent
. . . The Mercedes McCambridge - Fletcher Markle baby, expected momentarily, will be named either Marianna or John Hudson. Markle baby, expected momentarily, will be to see her dad, Carter de Haven, who is ailing.

51-12-27 Wisconsin State Journal - WISC 7:30 Defense Attorney
52-01-03
27
Title Unknown
N
52-01-03 Wisconsin State Journal - WISC 7:30 Defense Attorney
52-01-10
28
Title Unknown
N
52-01-10 Wisconsin State Journal - WISC 7:30 Defense Attorney
52-01-17
29
Title Unknown
N
52-01-17 Wisconsin State Journal - WISC 7:30 Defense Attorney
52-01-24
30
Title Unknown
N
52-01-19 Dixon Evening Telegraph
Mercedes McCambridge, who does "Defense Attorney" on the air, will do the telefilm version.

52-01-24 Wisconsin State Journal - WISC 7:30 Defense Attorney
52-01-31
31
Title Unknown
N
52-01-31 Wisconsin State Journal
WISC 7:30 Defense Attorney

52-02-01 Oakland Tribune
A DARK MOMENT
Academy award winning movie actress Mercedes McCambridge was reported
"doing fine" today after her baby was born dead. Miss McCambridge, who won the award for her role in "All the King's Men," has a 10-year-old son by a former marriage. Her husband is movie producer Fletcher Markle.
52-02-07
32
Title Unknown
N
52-02-07 Wisconsin State Journal - WISC 7:30 Defense Attorney
52-02-14
33
Title Unknown
N
52-02-14 Wisconsin State Journal - WISC 7:30 Defense Attorney

52-02-14 Albuquerque Journal
Mercedes McCambridge knows the best thing she can do to help her get over the death of her baby is to get back to work as soon as possible. And she is glad her next picture is to be "Spear in the Sand" for Arch Oboler.
Oboler started Mercedes in radio and later arranged for her first screen test at MGM. Even though that studio didn't sign her she still credits Oboler with starting her screen career and she's grateful to him.
52-02-21
34
Title Unknown
N
52-02-21 Wisconsin State Journal - 7:30 p.m.--Defense Attorney (WISC): quarrel with stepmother brings murder charge.
52-02-28
35
Title Unknown
N
52-02-28 Wisconsin State Journal - WISC 7:30 Defense Attorney
52-03-06
36
Title Unknown
N
52-03-06 Wisconsin State Journal
WISC 7:30 Basketball Tournament.

52-03-06 New York Times
8:30-WJZ--Defense Attorney, With Mercedes McCambridge
52-03-13
37
Client Thomas Richards
Y
52-03-13 Wisconsin State Journal
WISC 7:30 Basketball Tournament.

52-03-13 New York Times
8:30-WJZ--Defense Attorney, With Mercedes McCambridge
52-03-20
38
Title Unknown
N
52-03-20 Wisconsin State Journal
WISC 7:30 Defense Attorney
52-03-27
39
Title Unknown
N
52-03-27 Wisconsin State Journal
WISC 7:30 Defense Attorney
52-04-03
40
Title Unknown
N
52-04-03 Wisconsin State Journal
WISC 7:30 Defense Attorney
52-04-10
41
Client Joshua Masters
Y
[Kix and Clorets sponsorship]

52-04-10 Wisconsin State Journal
WISC 7:30 Defense Attorney

Betty Mills of Radio-TV Mirror announces the selection of Mercedes McCambridge as Favorite Dramatic Actress.
52-04-17
42
Title Unknown
N
52-04-17 Wisconsin State Journal
WISC 7:30 Defense Attorney
52-04-24
43
Title Unknown
N
52-04-24 Wisconsin State Journal
WISC 7:30 Defense Attorney
52-05-01
44
Title Unknown
N
52-05-01 New York Times
8:30-WJZ--Defense Attorney, With Mercedes McCambridge
52-05-08
45
Title Unknown
N
52-05-08 Wisconsin State Journal
WISC 7:30 Defense Attorney
52-05-15
46
Client Nick Baroni

The Nick Baroni episode caught the ire of a group of Italian-Americans in Chicago.
The Nick Baroni episode caught the ire of a group of Italian-Americans in Chicago.

N
52-05-15 Wisconsin State Journal
WISC 7:30 Defense Attorney

52-05-15 Tucson Daily Citizen
7:30—Defense Attorney.
An underworld character has no attorney
until Martha Ellis Bryant comes to his rescue
(KCNA).
52-05-22
47
Title Unknown
N
52-05-22 Wisconsin State Journal
WISC 7:30 Defense Attorney
52-05-29
48
Title Unknown
N
52-05-29 Wisconsin State Journal
WISC 7:30 Defense Attorney
52-06-05
49
Title Unknown
N
52-06-05 Wisconsin State Journal
WISC 7:30 Defense Attorney
52-06-12
50
Title Unknown
N
52-06-12 Wisconsin State Journal - WISC 7:30 Defense Attorney
52-06-19
51
Title Unknown
N
52-06-19 Wisconsin State Journal - 7:30 p.m.--Defense Attorney (WISC): Mercedes McCambridge wins freedom for youth in dope case.

52-06-19 Long Beach Press-Telegram
Martha Ellis Bryant, woman lawyer, decides at the behest of a distraught wife, to defend a man charged with murder and assists justice tempered with mercy on KECA at 7:30 on "Defense Attorney."
52-06-26
52
Title Unknown
N
52-06-26 Wisconsin State Journal - WISC 7:30 Defense Attorney
52-07-03
53
Title Unknown
N
52-07-03 Wisconsin State Journal
7:30 p.m. Defense Attorney (WISC): Mercedes McCambridge
defends young bank teller accused of theft.

52-07-03 Long Beach Press-Telegram
Despite a signed confession admitting theft of a large sum of money, a bank teller gets the legal services of a brilliant lady in "Defense Attorney" on KECA at 7:30. The case has a startling
conclusion.
52-07-10
54
Title Unknown
N
52-07-10 Wisconsin State Journal
WISC 7:30 Republican Convention.

52-07-10 New York Times
8:30-WJZ--Defense Attorney, With Mercedes McCambridge
52-07-17
55
Title Unknown
N
52-07-17 Wisconsin State Journal
WISC 7:30 Defense Attorney

52-07-17 Tucson Daily Citizen
7:30 — Defense Attorney. Woman Attorney Martha Ellis Bryant, portrayed by Mercedes McCambririge, aids another client (KCNA).
52-07-24
--
Preempted
--
52-07-24 Wisconsin State Journal - WISC 7:30 Democratic Convention.

52-07-24 New York Times
8:30-WJZ--Paul Whiteman
52-07-31
56
Title Unknown
N
52-07-31 Wisconsin State Journal
WISC 7:30 Defense Attorney
52-08-07
57
Title Unknown
N
52-08-07 Wisconsin State Journal - WISC 7:30 Defense Attorney
52-08-14
58
Title Unknown
N
52-08-14 Wisconsin State Journal - 7:30 p.m. Defense Attorney WISC: young mother accused in child's death.

52-08-14 Long Beach Press-Telegram
Martha Ellis Bryant, woman lawyer, defends a young mother accused of negligent homicide on "Defense Attorney" over KECAat 7:30.
52-08-21
59
Title Unknown
N
52-08-21 Wisconsin State Journal - WISC 7:30 Defense Attorney
52-08-28
60
Client George Baughman
N
52-08-28 Wisconsin State Journal - WISC 7:30 Defense Attorney
52-09-04
61
Title Unknown
N
52-09-04 Wisconsin State Journal - WISC 7:30 Defense Attorney
52-09-11
62
Client Jim Nelson
N
52-09-11 Wisconsin State Journal - WISC 7:30 Defense Attorney
52-09-18
63
Clients Thomas Kennedy and Jethro Lester
N
52-09-18 Wisconsin State Journal - WISC 7:30 Defense Attorney
52-09-25
64
Title Unknown
N
52-09-25 Wisconsin State Journal - WISC 7:30 Defense Attorney
52-10-02
--
Preempted
--
52-10-02 Wisconsin State Journal - WISC 7:30 Newsstand Theater.

52-10-02 New York Times - 8:30-WJZ--Newsstand Theatre
52-10-09
65
Client Edith Larkin
N
52-10-09 Wisconsin State Journal
WISC 8 p.m.--Defense Attorney (WISC):
Mercedes McCambridge show at new time.
52-10-16
66
Title Unknown
N
52-10-16 Wisconsin State Journal - WISC 8:00 Defense Attorney
52-10-23
67
Title Unknown
N
52-10-23 Wisconsin State Journal
WISC 8:00 Defense Attorney

52-10-23 New York Times
8:00-WJZ--Defense Attorney, With Mercedes McCambridge
52-10-28
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52-10-28 New York Times
8:00-WJZ--Adventures of Michael Shayne
52-10-30
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52-10-30 Wisconsin State Journal
WISC 8:00 The Top Guy.

52-10-30 New York Times
8:00-WJZ--The Top Guy, With J. Scott Smart

52-11-26 Naugatuck Daily News
Mercedes McCambridge, who couldn't escape the curse of an Oscar, has given up her Hollywood home and will live permanently in New York with hubby Fletcher Markle, new director of TV's "Studio One." She will do her radio show, "Defense Attorney,'" and the TV version of it, from Manhattan.
52-11-04
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Preempted
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[Moves to Tuesdays; Production moves to New York; Preempted for Election Returns]

52-11-04 New York Times
Election Returns: WNBC. WOR, WJZ. WCRS-8 to Conclusion; WMCA-Intermittently WNYC -7-10 ; WNYCFM-10 to Conclusion; WINS-9:05 to Conclusion; WMGM-Intermitt ently WNEW-T :30 to Conclusion; WEIID-9:30-11; WQXR-7 to Conclusion.
52-11-11
68
Title Unknown
N
52-11-11 New York Times
8-8:30--Defense Attorney: Mercedes McCambridge--WJZ.
52-11-18
69
Title Unknown
N
52-11-18 New York Times
8-8:30--Defense Attorney: Mercedes McCambridge--WJZ.
52-11-25
70
Title Unknown
N
52-11-25 New York Times
8-8:30--Defense Attorney: Mercedes McCambridge--WJZ.
52-12-02
71
Title Unknown
N
52-12-02 New York Times
8-8:30--Defense Attorney: Mercedes McCambridge--WJZ.
52-12-09
72
Title Unknown
N
52-12-09 New York Times
8-8:30--Defense Attorney: Mercedes McCambridge--WJZ.
52-12-16
73
Title Unknown
N
52-12-16 New York Times
8:00-WJZ--Defense Attorney, With Mercedes McCambridge
52-12-23
74
Title Unknown
N
52-12-23 New York Times
8-8:30--Defense Attorney: Mercedes McCambridge--WJZ.
52-12-30
75
Title Unknown
N
[Final Program; Replaced by the premiere of Sparring Partners]

52-12-30 New York Times
8:00-WJZ--Defense Attorney, With Mercedes McCambridge
53-01-06
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53-01-06 New York Times
8-8:30--Sparring Partners: With Walter Kiernan and Eloise McElhone--WJZ (Premiere)






Defense Attorney Radio Program Biographies




Carlotta Mercedes Agnes McCambridge
(Martha Ellis Bryant)

Stage, Radio, Television and Film Actress
(1916-2004)

Birthplace: Joliet, Illinois, U.S.A.

Education: Mundelein College, Illinois

Radiography:
1938 Your Health
1938 Lights Out
1938 Pulitzer Prize Plays
1939 A Thousand and One Wives
1939 Midstream
1940 The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes
1941 The Jello Program
1941 The Rudy Vallee Sealtest Show
1941 Salute To Labor
1942 The Great Gildersleeve
1942 Plays For Americans
1942 The Adventures Of Red Ryder
1942 Kraft Music Hall
1942 Suspense
1943 Free World Theater
1943 Cavalcade For Victory
1944 Everything For the Boys
1944 Columbia Presents Corwin
1944 Four For the Fifth
1944 Theater of Romance
1945 Radio Hall Of Fame
1945 Arch Oboler's Plays
1945 New World A'Comin'
1945 Treasury Salute
1946 Inner Sanctum
1946 Front Page Drama
1946 The World's Most Honored Flights
1946 Gang Busters
1946 Mercury Summer Theater
1946 Murder At Midnight
1946 The Shadow
1947 One World Or None
1947 Bulldog Drummond
1947 The Greatest Story Ever Told
1947 Studio One
1947 Cavalcade of America
1947 This Is Nora Drake
1948 Your Playhouse Of Favorites
1948 Radio Reader's Digest
1948 The Big Story
1948 The Mysterious Traveler
1948 Ford Theater
1949 The Whistler
1949 Perry Mason
1949 I Love A Mystery
1950 Academy Awards Program
1951 Screen Director's Playhouse
1951 The Defense Rests (Audition)
1951 Defense Attorney
1953 Family Skeleton
1974 CBS Radio Mystery Theater
Drop Dead
The Cisco Kid

Mercedes McCambridge before an NBC Mike
Mercedes McCambridge before an NBC Mike

LIFE magazine recorded Mercedes McCambridge's range of expressions while reading lines from Portrait of A Girl (49-09-23)
LIFE magazine recorded Mercedes McCambridge's range of expressions while reading lines from Portrait of A Girl (49-09-23)

Caption reads -- Son's Boat was sent from Haiti where Miss McCambridge's husband William Fifield, former radio writer, is writing his first full-length book
Caption reads -- Son's Boat was sent from Haiti where Miss McCambridge's husband William Fifield, former radio writer, is writing his first full-length book

Mercedes McCambridge for Royal Crown Cola in 1950
Mercedes McCambridge for Royal Crown Cola in 1950

Mercedes McCambridge was married to Fletcher Markle  for 12 years.
Mercedes McCambridge was married to Fletcher Markle for 12 years.
From the April 9th, 1951 Baytown Sun:
 
Along Broadway:
 
Actresses' Husband's Day May Prove Too Expensive
 By EARL WILSON
 
NEW YORK--At last, men--what we've been waiting for—a Husband's Day!
     We're going to be pampered by our loving wives one day of the year (why only one, I don't know).  And for this tribute to us for being the superior sex we can thank Mercedes McCambridge and Lucille Ball, the Hollywood actress.
     Mercedes is the gal who says women should give up the vote and let their menfolk do the heavy thinking.
     "On Husbands Day we'll wait on our husbands hand and foot and our slogan will be, 'My husband is the most wonderful man in the world,'" she announced.
     (She seemed rather sane, too.)
     "By all means our husbands will be served breakfast in bed to start the day," she said. "And everything that day is for him."
     "How about if he wants to go to a ball game or go fishing?"
     "Fine!  We'll go with him!"
     "Maybe he'd rather go alone."
     "Fine.  Everything he does that day is perfect."
"MAYBE HE'D like to go see his his girl friend, I suggested.
     Miss McCambridge said that Husband's Day—or Happy Husband's Day, as she also likes to think of it—will make the husband so delirious with joy that such a thing would be impossible.
     "We'll get out the best silver," she rippled on enthusiastically—a fancy tablecloth.  There'll be flowers."
     "You're gonna send your husband flowers?" I asked in some surprise.
     "No, but there'll be flowers in the house.  It'll be Sunday.  The kids will be out of the house that day."
     "Where?"
     "We'll send them out.  We might even pretend he isn't even your husband.  Just your boy friend.  It'll be a real arty thing.  We'll get a new negligee and . . . oooh, it'll get real illicit and wonderful."
MISS McCAMBRIDGE hugged herself thinking how wonderful it would be.
     Miss McCambridge is the gal from Joilet who was the academy award supporting acress in 1950.  To promote her ideas about more happiness for husbands, she announced formation of "Magnolias Anonymous," which has no dues, no officers, and, I, suspect, no members.
     "When were you going to give us this day?" I inquired suspiciously.
     "Let's have Happy Husband's Day in August," she said.
     "Maybe the Happy Husband to be happy would like to get loaded," I said.
     "Let's get him as loaded as he likes on Happy Husband's Day.  It would be wonderful to have champagne for breakfast."
     "It seems to me that you've already got something like this in Father's Day," I mentioned.
     "Oh, no, father isn't a husband!"
     "He'd better be or it ain't legal," I pointed out.
MISS McCAMBRIDGE thought the husband should be expected to light his own cigarets and open his own doors, but he certainly would not be expected to mix his own drinks.
     "And at night," she said, "he gets taken to dinner—"
     "Wonderful!"
     "But he pays for it, of course."
     At this point in our feverish planning for this word panacea, Miss McCambridge's husband, handsome Fletcher Markle, the Hollywood producer came in.  He was quite astonished, because this was the first he had heard he was going to undergo a whole day of pampering.
     "What is this going to cost us afterward?" he asked, real husband-like.
     "Oh, there'll have to be a pay off, don't worry!" she said.
IT REMINDED US of the story of the fellow who was trying to get a man to go back to his wife.
     "Just think," argued the friend, "at night she'll light your pipe and bring your slippers, and in the morning she'll get up and fix you breakfast."
     "Yeah," said the husband, "and I think I'll go back to her anyway."
     Personally, I'm all for the Happy Husband's Day.  In fact, we're having a preliminary one at our house next Sunday just to get certain people in training for the big one next August.

From the April 3rd 2004 edition of The Gettysburg Times: 

Actress Mercedes
McCambridge dies at 85
 
     LOS ANGELES (AP) — Actress Mercedes McCambridge, who won an Oscar for the 1949 film "All the King's Men" and later provided the raspy voice of the demon-possessed girl in "The Exorcist,"' has died.  She was 85.
     McCambridge died from natural causes on March 2, the Rev. Joe Carroll, a friend and the founder of a San Diego charity for the homeless, said Tuesday.  She had lived in the La Jolla area of San Diego since the 1980s.
     McCambridge's strong, radio-trained voice made her an ideal film portrayer of hard-driving women.  She received the Academy Award as supporting actress for her screen debut in "All the King's Men," playing a reporter who was the nemesis of the populist Southern governor, Willie Stark.
     Broderick Crawford was named best actor for his role as Stark, a close replica of Louisiana's Huey Long, and the drama was honored with a best picture Oscar.
     During her film career, McCambridge acquired a reputation as a strong-willed, outspoken woman on and off the screen. When she was hired to play the enemy of Joan Crawford in a 1954 Western. "Johnny Guitar," the pair feuded on the set. In her memoir, McCambridge called Crawford "a mean, tipsy, powerful, rotten-egg lady."
     Because of her great vocal skills, McCambridge was hired to portray The Demon in William Friedkin's 1973 smash hit "The Exorcist."  After weeks of what she called the hardest work she had done for a film, she had been promised prominent mention in the credits.
     But when she attended the preview, her name was missing.  As she left the theater in tears, Friedkin tried to explain that there had been no time to insert her credit.  The Screen Actors Guild intervened and forced her inclusion in the credits.
     Despite the celebrity that followed her Academy Award for "All the King's Men," McCambridge's film career did not flourish.  Because she did not fit the glamour girl image that was prevalent in postwar films, her movie work was sporadic.
     Among the later films:  "Giant" (1956 — her second Academy nomination as supporting actress), "A Farewell to Arms" (1957), "Touch of Evil" (1958 — with her radio cohort Orson Welles), "Suddenly Last Summer" (1959), "Cimarron" (1960), "99 Women" (1969), "Thieves" (1977), "The Concorde — Airport '79" (1979).
     In the early 1990s, Neil Simon called with an offer to play the grandmother in "Lost in Yonkers" on Broadway and on the road.  McCambridge's return to the New York theater proved triumphant, and she performed the play 560 times.
     In her later years, McCambridge also appeared in "Magnum, P.I." and other television series, but her movie work was sparse.
     "I don't think the Hollywood community is interested in what I can do," she said in a 1981 interview.  "That's all right I've never looked for a job in my life, and I'm not going to start now.  I have plenty to keep me busy."
     McCambridge battled through much of her life, surviving a long siege of alcoholism, two failed marriages and series of tragedies involving her only child, John Lawrence Fifield.  The son, who later took the last name of his mother's second husband, Markle, killed his wife and children and himself in 1987.
     Charlotte Mercedes Agnes McCambridge was born to Irish parents on March 17, 1918, on the family farm at Joliet, Ill.
     After graduation from Mundelein College in Chicago, she acted in Chicago radio, which then produced several network soap operas and nighttime shows.  She married her first husband, William Fifield, at 23.
     They eventually wound up in Hollywood, where she resumed her career as a radio actress.  Her vocal versatility brought her jobs on shows ranging from "I Love a Mystery" to "Red Ryder."
     McCambridge returned to New York for the title role in a radio adaptation of the play "Abie's Irish Rose."  She later found steady work in the radio dramas of Welles, who called her "the world's greatest living radio actress."
     From 1950 to 1962, McCambridge was married to Canadian-born Fletcher Markle, a radio director who became well-known in the U.S. during the years of live television drama.  During the marriage and afterward, she was sometimes hospitalized after episodes of heavy drinking.  After years with Alcoholics Anonymous, she achieved sobriety.



Howard Culver
(Judson Barnes)

Radio, Television, and Film Actor and Announcer
(1918-1984)

Birthplace: Larimer County, Colorado, USA

Radiography:
1937 The Life of Mary Sothern
1942 News Of the World Today
1944 Star Performance
1944 We Deliver the Goods
1946 Strange Wills
1946 The Whistler
1947 All-Star Western Theatre
1947 Mystery In the Air
1947 Stairway To the Stars
1947 Family Theatre
1948 Straight Arrow
1948 Suspense
1948 The Adventures Of Ellery Queen
1948 Chandu the Magician
1948 Make Believe Town
1948 Anacin Hollywood Star Theatre
1948 Stories From the American Scene
1949 Our American Heritage
1949 The Adventures Of Philip Marlowe
1949 Gunsmoke
1949 The Croupier
1949 Yours Truly, Johnny Dollar
1950 The Hour Of St Francis
1950 The Fabulous Mr Manchester
1951 Defense Attorney
1952 Father Knows Best
1952 The Freedom Story
1952 Wild Bill Hickok
1952 Escape
1953 The Roy Rogers Show
1954 Rocky Fortune
1954 Inheritance
1954 The Railroad Hour
1955 Barrie Craig, Confidential Investigator
1956 Fort Laramie
1957 A Joy Forever
1958 Have Gun, Will Travel
1979 Sears Radio Theater
Horizons West
I Devise and Bequeath
Mission Accomplished
When the West Was Young
Hollywood Theatre Group
Howard Culver as Dr. Bill Hawley in Perry Mason (1957)
Howard Culver as Dr. Bill Hawley in Perry Mason (1957)

Howard Culver as handwriting expert Rufus Bolding in Perry Mason (1958)
Howard Culver as handwriting expert Rufus Bolding in Perry Mason (1958)

Howard Culver as Rufus Bolding shakes hands with Perry Mason (1958)
Howard Culver as Rufus Bolding shakes hands with Perry Mason (1958)

Howard Culver as Detective Parker in The Third Man (1959)
Howard Culver as Detective Parker in The Third Man (1959)

Howard Culver as Jury Foreman in The Twilight Zone (1961)
Howard Culver as Jury Foreman in The Twilight Zone (1961)

Howard Culver in The Untouchables (1962)
Howard Culver in The Untouchables (1962)

Diminutive Howard Culver was a giant in Radio and a solid, steadily working character actor in Television. Born in Colorado, Culver grew up in Los Angeles, California. By the age of 19 he was appearing in Radio on The Life of Mary Sothern.

From the outset, Howard Culver's distinctive baritone and straightforward delivery promised a long and successful career for the young actor/announcer. Working regularly at KFI, KNX and Don Lee-Mutual in Los Angeles and with Don Lee-Mutual in San Francisco, Culver had already performed in almost a thousand Radio episodes by the time he entered The Navy during World War II.

Upon his return to civilian life, Howard Culver jumped right back into Radio, as well as early Television. Over a forty year career in Radio, Howard Culver compiled an estimated 4,000 appearances. His Television career, equally successful and prolific saw him in some 200 Television appearances over a 35 year career.

As with many of the truly great character actors of from The Golden Age of Television, Howard Culver was a master of 'disappearing' into a well-directed Television feature--that was, after all, what he was being paid to do. As such it's a foregone conclusion that virtually anyone who watched mainstream Television from The Golden Age has seen Howard Culver a hundred times, and can probably remember him but not specifically place him.

But where Howard Culver's voice is concerned, it's likely that virtually any genuine Golden Age Radio fan can recognize Howard Culver's distinctive voice, irrespective of the vehicle in which he was appearing. He did acquire his own fan following over the years for several memorable leading roles--especially his starring role in Straight Arrow (1948) as Steve Adams for almost three years and three-hundred episodes. Juvenile adventure fans will also recognize Howard Culver from his role as the announcer in the Chandu The Magician (1948) radio series. Culver was also Radio's last Ellery Queen (1948).

Clearly comfortable in juvenile adventure roles, Culver's most diverse body of work in Radio was in the crime, mystery and detective genres which found him appearing in a truly remarkable variety of roles, spanning the entire range of characterizations. Culver was a frequent performer in virtually anything that Jack Webb was ever a party to, as well as numerous appearances in Strange Wills (1946), All-Star Western Theatre (1947), Mystery in The Air (1947) and Defense Attorney (1951).

Working right up until his unexpected passing--while on vacation in Hong Kong--Culver seemed even more in demand as a character actor the more he matured. His voice certainly never wavered and his character performances right through the end of his career were predictably solid--the epitome of a true craftsman.

Howard Culver's widow, Lois--a Radio professional in her own right--remained active in the Vintage Radio community after Howard's passing.



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