Click to go to Digital Deli Too Home Page blank head
Preserving the Golden Age of Radio for A Digital Age
Explore Our Golden Age Radio Research Pages Click here to learn about our approach to Golden Age Radio Preservation [Under Development] Click to go to Our Radio Articles Page This Feature Is Currently Not Available
 
This will take you to our Numeric Radio logs
This will take you to our A Series Radio logs This will take you to our B Series Radio logs This will take you to our C Series Radio logs This will take you to our D Series Radio logs This will take you to our E Series Radio logs This will take you to our F Series Radio logs This will take you to our G Series Radio logs This will take you to our H Series Radio logs This will take you to our I Series Radio logs This will take you to our J Series Radio logs This will take you to our K Series Radio logs This will take you to our L Series Radio logs This will take you to our M Series Radio logs
This will take you to our N Series Radio logs This will take you to our O Series Radio logs This will take you to our P Series Radio logs This will take you to our Q Series Radio logs This will take you to our R Series Radio logs This will take you to our S Series Radio logs This will take you to our T Series Radio logs This will take you to our U Series Radio logs This will take you to our V Series Radio logs This will take you to our W Series Radio logs This will take you to our X Series Radio logs This will take you to our Y Series Radio logs This will take you to our Z Series Radio logs This will take you back to our Text List of Radio logs

Original The VOyage of The Scarlet Queen header art

The Voyage of The Scarlet Queen Radio Program

Dee-Scription: Home >> D D Too Home >> Radio Logs >> The Voyage of The Scarlet Queen




Background

The adventure dramas of the 1940s were some of the most well produced from The Golden Age of Radio. They varied between westerns, mysteries, the supernatural, espionage, science fiction and adventures on the high seas. Most of the high seas adventures of the previous fifteen years had been juvenile adventures.

The introduction of more mature themes and situations into adventure dramas of the era was a relatively revolutionary moment in contemporary Radio. The adult westerns of the era began with Hawk Durango and Hawk Larrabee, starring Elliott Lewis and Barton Yarborough, respectively. The more mature themes and situations of the detective drama genre began in the 1950s with Dragnet and The Lineup with Jack Webb and Bill Johnstone, respectively. Adult supernatural mysteries such as Cabin B-13 and Diary of Fate debuted in the late 1940s. Radio was maturing, sobered by the return of G.I.s from the world over following the end of World War II.

Some of the more adult dramas of the era, while occasionally meeting with favorable critical reviews, received just as many reviews panning such efforts. Radio was indeed evolving. It had to. Television was already making considerable inroads into commercial Radio. And while Television's first widely popular efforts were somewhat lackluster, Radio wasn't responding quickly enough to hold onto its listeners.

Mutual Debuts The Voyage of The Scarlet Queen

The Voyage of The Scarlet Queen had been auditioned in February 1947 with Howard Duff in the lead and Elliott Lewis as his newly signed First Officer. Duff had debuted as Sam Spade in The Adventures of Sam Spade, Detective during the Summer of 1946. With the meteoric rise in the popularity of 'Sam Spade,' coupled with Duff's growing demand for Film roles, it fell to the audition's 'Red Gallagher' to step into the leading role when Mutual gave The Voyage of The Scarlet Queen the green light in July of 1947.

Obtaining the services of Elliott Lewis for Mutual's The Voyage of The Scarlet Queen was a windfall for Mutual. Elliott Lewis was already being referred to as 'Mr. Radio' and justifiably so. By 1947, Lewis had become one of Radio's most accomplished, quadruple-threat talents. He wrote superbly. He was already an accomplished director. He'd already produced several high-profile programs. And from the very outset of his career in the mid-1930s, he'd proven himself one of Radio's greatest and most versatile voice talents.

Apart from the transition from Howard Duff to Elliott Lewis in the leading role, the production backstory of Captain and Master, Philip M. Karney, 29, 6' 2 1/2" tall, with a 'three-strand Turk's head' on his right bicep--and his beautiful white ketch, 'The Scarlet Queen,' varied little from the audition. Philip Karney had recently lost his First Officer, David R. Malone--he was murdered in the Pilot / Audition, and again in Episode No. 1 of the production run. By the time The Scarlet Queen embarks on its 40,000 mile round-trip, "Red Gallagher," portrayed by Ed Max, signs on as it's new First Officer. Their ultimate destination is the mysterious Orient by way of the South Seas, under contract to Kang & Sons, China Traders.

The Scarlet Queen was a 78-foot, two-masted ketch, with a white hull, teak decking, brass bright-work, and sporting the 'Scarlet Queen' herself, on the bowsprit, naked as the day she was born, "a fresh, young body . . . looking forward, . . bold, teasing . . . dressed in only a crown, and painted brilliant red."

When The Voyage of The Scarlet Queen premiered in July 1947, the Mutual Broadcasting System was comprised of over 430 affiliate stations--the highest number in their history. To say their reach might have been exceeding their grasp is underscored by the fact that when The Voyage of The Scarlet Queen premiered, MBS was broadcasting sixteen mystery genre programs every week, including The Falcon. MBS had also debuted their wildly popular Family Theater in the Spring of 1947, running right after The Voyage of The Scarlet Queen for most of the latter's run.

Family Theater was sucking up all of the oxygen in Mutual's promotional lineup and with The Burns and Allen Show returning to the air in the Fall of 1947, The Voyage of The Scarlet Queen wasn't ideally positioned to compete in its alloted timeslot--to say the least. And yet in spite of all of its competition, the one-season adventure drama acquitted itself well. In all fairness to Elliott Lewis, his Hawk Durango adult western was a bit ahead of its time as well. Common to both of the adult adventures were excellent production values and sound shaping.

The Doud and Tallman scripts were innovative, well-paced, taut and more than a little reminiscent of Bold Venture, which succeeded The Voyage of The Scarlet Queen by almost five years. The effort to maintain fairly tight continuity was highly successful up through Episode No. 20. The first twenty scripts had Captain Karney announcing his 'miles traveled since departing San Francisco' at the close of each episode. The announcer would also occasionally tease the following 'port of call.'

Indeed, maintaining the artifice of both opening and closing 'log entries' proved a graceful way to both introduce the night's plot, as well as provide closure to the night's adventure.

Series Derivatives:

The Log of The Black Parrot; AFRTS END 744 'The Scarlet Queen'
Genre: Anthology of Golden Age Radio Adventure Dramas
Network(s): Mutual Broadcasting System
Audition Date(s) and Title(s): 47-02-02 [Aud] The Murder of 1st Officer Malone
50-05-06 [Aud] The Log of The Black Parrot
Premiere Date(s) and Title(s): 47-07-03 01 The Shanghai Secret
Run Dates(s)/ Time(s): 47-07-03 to 48-03-03; MBS; Thirty-six, 30-minute programs; Thursdays, 7:30 p.m.
Syndication: Command Radio Productions
Sponsors: Sustaining
Director(s): James Burton [Director/Producer]
Principal Actors: Howard Duff, Ed Max, Virginia Gregg, Junius Matthews, Elliott Lewis, William Conrad, Lee Patrick, Cathy Lewis, Edwin Max, Lillian Buyeff, Bob Bruce, Jack Kruschen, Frank Gerstle, D.J. Thompson, Mary Lansing, Charles Seel, Barton Yarborough, Ben Wright, William Johnstone, Alan Reed, John Dehner, Paul Frees, Rolfe Sedan, Gloria Blondell, Verna Felton, Jeff Chandler, Maya Gregory, Berry Kroeger, Roddy McDowall
Recurring Character(s): Captain and Master, Philip 'Phil' Karney, of The Scarlet Queen, a 78-foot, two-masted ketch based in San Francisco [Howard Duff and Elliott Lewis]; "Red" Gallagher, The Scarlet Queen's First Officer [Ed Max and Elliott Lewis]; Ah Sin, the paymaster for Kang & Sons, China Traders, The Scarlet Queen's erstwhile employer for the 'voyage'.
Protagonist(s): None
Author(s): None
Writer(s) Gil Doud and Bob Tallman
Music Direction: Richard Aurandt
Musical Theme(s): Unknown
Announcer(s): Charles Arlington
Estimated Scripts or
Broadcasts:
39
Episodes in Circulation: 34
Total Episodes in Collection: 34
Provenances:

Billboard Review of The Voyage of The Scarlet Queen's premiere from August 16 1947
Billboard Review of The Voyage of The Scarlet Queen's premiere from August 16 1947
RadioGOLDINdex, Hickerson Guide.

Notes on Provenances:

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

Digital Deli Too RadioLogIc


Accurately cataloging The Voyage of The Scarlet Queen should have been aided by the first twenty episodes, continuity ostensibly supported by Captain Karney's closing citations of 'miles traveled' since leaving San Francisco. Unfortunately, the mileage continuity unravels at Episode Nos. 3 and 4. Episode No. 3 closes with The Scarlet Queen having traversed 6,215 miles since leaving San Francisco. But Episode No. 4 has The Scarlet Queen having lost 624 miles somewhere: its mileage traveled only 5,591. Then, by Episode No. 5, mileage continuity is restored and maintained through Episode No. 20. From Episode 21 on, Doud and Tallman abandon mileage continuity altogether for the remainder of the series.

It would appear, upon a closer listening to the first five programs that the mileage cited in Episode No. 4 was simply a rare script continuity error from Doud and Tallman. As tempting as it might be to believe that Mutual might have aired this episode out of sequence, as it turns out the mileage cited should probably have been 6,591 versus 5,591. Indeed, though my own navigation plotting skills are a bit rusty, 6,591 would indeed be more in the ballpark for Episode No. 4.


What you see here, is what you get. Complete transparency. We have no 'credentials' whatsoever--in any way, shape, or form--in the 'otr community'--none. But here's how we did it--for better or worse. Here's how you can build on it yourselves--hopefully for the better. Here are the breadcrumbs--just follow the trail a bit further if you wish. No hobbled downloads. No misdirection. No posturing about our 'credentials.' No misrepresentations. No strings attached. We point you in the right direction and you're free to expand on it, extend it, use it however it best advances your efforts.

We ask one thing and one thing only--if you employ what we publish, attribute it, before we cite you on it.

We continue to provide honest, open research into these wonderful Golden Age Radio programs simply because we love to do it. If you feel that we've provided you with useful information or saved you some valuable time regarding this log--and you'd like to help us even further--you can help us keep going. Please consider a small donation here:

We don't pronounce our Golden Age Radio research as 'certified' anything. By the very definition, research is imperfect. We simply tell the truth. As is our continuing practice, we provide our fully provenanced research results--to the extent possible--right here on the page, for any of our peers to review--or refute--as the case may be. If you take issue with any of our findings, you're welcome to cite any better verifiable source(s) and we'll immediately review them and update our findings accordingly. As more verifiable provenances surface, we'll continue to update the following series log, as appropriate.

All rights reserved by their respective sources. Article and log copyright 2009-2010 The Digital Deli Online--all rights reserved. Any failure to attribute the results of this copywritten work will be rigorously pursued.

[Date, title, and episode column annotations in
red refer to either details we have yet to fully provenance or other unverifiable information as of this writing. Red highlights in the text of the 'Notes' columns refer to information upon which we relied in citing dates, date or time changes, or titles.]







The Voyage of The Scarlet Queen Program Log

Date Episode Title Avail. Notes
47-02-02 The Murder of First Officer Malone
Y
[Audition with Howard Duff as Phil Karney]
47-07-03
1
The Shanghai Secret
Y
[Premiere, Thursdays, 7:30 p.m.]
[AFRTS Only]
Miles Traveled: 31

47-07-03 The Morning Herald
MBS—7:30 Scarlet Queen, drama of the sea,
taking over from Count of Monte Cristo, being moved to Sundays

47-07-03 Chicago Tribune
7:30--W-G-N--Scarlet Queen, starring Elliott Lewis.
47-07-10
2
The Report from The White Jade Buddha
The Kapalama Basin Entry
Report of the White Jade Buddha
Y
Miles Traveled: 3,035

47-07-10 Chicago Tribune
7:30--W-G-N--Scarlet Queen: "
The Kapalama Basin Entry."
47-07-17
3
The Spaniard and the Laskar Pirates
Y
[AFRTS Only]
Miles Traveled: 6,215

47-07-17 Chicago Tribune
7:30--W-G-N--Scarlet Queen, another thrill drama.
47-07-24
4
The Boston Geisha and Chesapeake Bay
Y
Miles Traveled: 5,591

Announces next port of call: Jin Sen, Korea
47-07-31
5
The Lily in the Chimopo Bar
Lily in the Chimoipo Bar
Y
Miles Traveled: 6,873

47-08-07
6
The White Cargo Act and Ah Sin
Y
Miles Traveled: 7,885

47-08-14
7
The Street of the Weeping Women
N
47-08-21
8
The Story of the Eight Historic Periods
Story of the Eight Historic People
Y
Miles Traveled: 8,754

47-08-21 Hutchinson News Herald
6:30--KSAL--Scarlet Queen, Through China Seas
47-08-28
9
The Barefoot Nymph and the Mother Hubbard Jacket
Y
Miles Traveled: 9,450

47-09-04
10
Title Unknown
N
47-09-04 Chicago Tribune
7:30--W-G-N--Scarlet Queen, with Elliott Lewis.
47-09-11
11
The Jewel Thieves and the Straw Filled Dummy
Romance in Hong Kong
Y
Miles Traveled: 11,047

[AFRTS Only]
47-09-11 Chicago Tribune
7:30--W-G-N--Scarlet Queen in "
Romance in Hong Kong."
47-09-18
12
The Courtship of Anna Mae L'Amour
The Courtship of Anna May Lamour
Y
[AFRTS Only]
Miles Traveled: 11,658

47-09-18 Chicago Tribune
7:30--W-G-N--Scarlet Queen:
A treasure hunt is top of the show.

Hutchinson News Herald
6:30--KSAL--Scarlet Queen, In Indo-China Harbor

47-09-18 Portsmouth Times
7:30 p.m.--Mutual:
En route to Singapore in their quest for a $10,000,000 treasure, the crew of the good ketch "Scarlet Queen" will find their arch enemy, Kang, unrelenting in his efforts to interrupt their plans as they dock their vessel in Haiphong harbor.
47-09-25
13
Shore Leave and The Unhappy Wife
Y
[AFRTS Only]
Miles Traveled: 13,463

47-09-25 Chicago Tribune
7:30--W-G-N--Scarlet Queen
presents a Singapore adventure.

Announces
Sandarkan as next port
47-10-02
14
The Fat Trader and The Sword from Apokaijian
Y
Miles Traveled: 15,816

47-10-09
15
Tattooed Beaver and Baby Food for Paré Paré
Y
Miles Traveled: 16,821

47-10-16
16
Ah Sin and the Balinese Beaux Arts Ball
Y
Miles Traveled: 17,172

Announces Galeila Halmahara as next port
47-10-23
17
Grafter's Fort and the Black Pearl of Galela Bay
Grafter's Fort and the Black Pearl of Galahla Bay
Y
Miles Traveled: 20,221

47-10-30
18
King Ascot And The Maid In Waiting
Y
Miles Traveled: 20,433

47-11-06
19
The Lonely Sultan of Isabela de Basilan
The Lonely Sultan of Isabella de Basilan
Y
Miles Traveled: 20,858

47-11-13
20
Kang's Treasure and the Ghost of Tangulan
Kang's Treasure and the Ghost of Tangolan Bay
Y
Miles Traveled: 21,308






47-11-20
21
The Beautiful Girl in the Bargain Basement
Y
Miles Traveled: [not in script]

47-11-27
22
Huntsman's Quarry and The Dead Chinese
Y
Miles Traveled: [not in script]

47-12-05
23
The Green Tourist and the Temple Bell
Y
[Moves from Thursdays to Fridays]
Miles Traveled: [not in script]

47-12-12
24
The Wandering Master and the War Lord at Rest
Y
Miles Traveled: [not in script]

47-12-19
25
Red Beard and The Bag of Pearls
Y
Miles Traveled: [not in script]

47-12-26
26
The Fifteenth Lama and the Wise Guy From the East
Y
Miles Traveled: [not in script]

48-01-02
27
Hattie McCormick and the Patient Stowaway
Y
Miles Traveled: [not in script]

48-01-09
28
The Derelict and the Wandering Boy
Y
Miles Traveled: [not in script]

Announces next port of call: Darwin
48-01-14
29
The Fang Rubies and the Black Siamese
Y
[Wednesdays]
Miles Traveled: [not in script]

48-01-14 Janesville Daily Gazette

Black Cat

A black Siamese cat aboard the good ketch "Scarlet Queen" backgrounds the adventure drama adapted from the log of the vessel which will be dramatized over WCLO and Mutual at 7 tonite.
The story will tell
how Capt. Phil Kearney rued that day in Darwin, when he was loading cargo for Singapore, that he made a pet of the black cat.

48-01-21
30
The Ambitious Hostess On South Bridge Road
Y
Miles Traveled: [not in script]

48-01-21 Chicago Tribune
9:00-W-G-N-Scarlet Queen, with Elliot Lewis
48-01-28
31
The Bubble Dancer and The Buccaneers
Y
Miles Traveled: [not in script]

48-02-04
32
The Peg-Leg Skipper and the Iberian Blade
Y
Miles Traveled: [not in script]

48-02-11
33
Rocky the Third and the Dead Man's Chest
Rocky III and the Dead Man's Chest
Y
Miles Traveled: [not in script]

48-02-18
34
The Queen Anne Pistols and the Dealer On King George Road
Y
Miles Traveled: [not in script]

Announces next port of call: Singapore
48-02-25
35
The Winchester Rifle and the Ambitious Groom
Y
Miles Traveled: [not in script]

48-02-27 La Crosse Tribune
Because the script did not come up to expectations, Special Agent, a new crime drama, will not start on MBS next Wednesday night as a replacement for the sea story, Scarlet Queen. Instead the Encore Theater, which revives previously broadcast plays, will be brought back. MBS has postponed the start of the revived forum series, Opinionaire, from March 3 to 10.
48-03-03
36
Title Unknown
N
48-03-04 Mason City Globe-Gazette
Wednesday night at 7 on MBS— Encore theater, off the air since Dec. 3, being revived as a replacement for the sea story. Scarlet Queen. The program is made up of repeat performances of past radio plays.





AFRTS 'Scarlet Queen' Program Log

Date Episode Title Avail. Notes
47-07-03
1
The Shanghai Secret
Y
47-07-17
3
The Spaniard and the Laskar Pirates
Y
47-08-07
6
The White Cargo Act and Ah Sin
Y
47-08-21
8
The Story of the Eight Historic Periods
Y
47-09-11
11
Jewel Thieves and the Straw Filled Dummy
Y
47-09-18
12
The Courtship of Anna Mae L'Amour
Y
47-09-25
13
Shore Leave and the Unhappy Wife
Y
47-10-09
15
The Tattooed Beaver and Baby Food for Paré Paré
Y
47-12-10
24
The Wandering Master and the War Lord at Rest
Y
48-02-04
32
The Peg-Leg Skipper and the Iberian Blade
Y
48-02-11
33
Rockie the Third and the Dead Man's Chest
Y
48-02-25
35
Winchester Rifle and the Ambitious Groom
Y










62-08-21
1
The Shanghai Secret 62-08-18 Pacific Stars and Stripes
FEN HIGHLIGHTS
'Scarlet Queen' to Sail the Air Waves
TOKYO (FEN)—
Adventure on the high seas is in store for Far East Network listeners on a new series, "Voyage of the Scarlet Queen," which starts next week.
The program, which will be aired on Tuesdays at 9:30 p.m., stars Elliot Lewis as the captain of the "Scarlet Queen".
The plot revolves about the ship's journey from San Francisco to Hawaii, the-Philippines, Japan, Korea and other ports in search of treasure valued at $10 million.
62-08-21
2
Title Unknown
62-09-04
3
Title Unknown
62-09-11
4
The Lily and the Bar 62-09-08 Pacific Stars and Stripes
TUESDAY—Elliot Lewis stars as Capt. Carney in the story
"The Lily and the Bar" on "Voyage of the Scarlet Queen" at 9:30 p.m.
62-09-18
5
Title Unknown 62-09-15 Pacific Stars and Stripes
TUESDAY—The "Scarlet Queen" continues its voyage to find $10 million in Chinese artifacts at 9:30
p.m. with Elliot Lewis at the helm.
62-09-25
6
Title Unknown
62-10-02
7
Title Unknown
62-10-09
8
Title Unknown
62-10-16
9
Title Unknown
62-10-23
10
Title Unknown
62-10-30
11
Title Unknown
62-11-06
12
Title Unknown
62-11-13
13
Title Unknown
62-11-20
14
Title Unknown
62-11-27
15
Title Unknown






The Voyage of The Scarlet Queen Radio Program Biographies




Elliott Lewis
(Capt. Philip Kearney)
Stage, Screen, Radio, and Television Actor, Director, Producer, and Writer
(1917-1990)

Birthplace:
New York City, New York, USA

Radiography:
1937 The Cinnamon Bear
1939 The Silver Theatre
1939-1941 The Jello Program
1941 Miss Pinkerton, Inc.
1941 The Orson Welles Theatre
1941 We Hold These Truths
1942-1946 The Cavalcade of America
1942 The Gulf Screen Guild Theatre
1942 Lights Out!
1944 Command Performance
1945 The Theatre of Famous Radio Players
1945-1948 The Whistler
1945-1956 Suspense
1945 On A Note of Triumph
1945 Arch Oboler's Plays
1945 Columbia Presents Corwin
1945 Twelve Players
1945 The Life of Riley
1945 The Amazing Nero Wolfe
1946 Lux Radio Theatre
1946 Encore Theatre
1946 The Casebook of Gregory Hood
1946 Columbia Workshop
1946-1951 The Lucky Strike Program
1947 The Adventures of Sam Spade
1947 The Voyage of The Scarlet Queen
1947 Escape!
1947 Hawk Larrabee
1948 Maxwell House Coffee Time
1948 The Sweeney and March Show
1948-1952 The Phil Harris and Alice Faye Show
1949 The Kraft Music Hall
1949 Broadway Is My Beat
1950 The Line-Up
1951 Pursuit!
1952-1954 Crime Classics
1953 Onstage with Cathy and Elliott Lewis
1957 The CBS Radio Workshop
1973 The Hollywood Radio Theatre [Zero Hour]
1979 Sear Radio Theatre
1980 Mutual Radio Theatre
Elliott Lewis's comparatively sparse casting book entry circa 1942
Elliott Lewis' comparatively sparse entry from the October 1940 edition of Lew Lauria's Radio Artists Directory

Elliott Lewis c. 1944
Elliott Lewis c. 1944

Elliott Lewis c. 1948
Elliott Lewis c. 1948
It's safe to say that Elliott Lewis was the most prolific, versatile Renaissance Man of both Radio and Television throughout the Golden Ages of both media. Quite simply, he did it all--and superlatively. Elliott Lewis first made his mark as an actor, writer, producer and director on radio in the late 1930's. Indeed his first recorded radio appearances were in 1937's The Cinnamon Bear.

During World War II, Lewis was responsible for many of the finest Armed Forces Radio Service productions of the War years, working in conjunction with Gower Gulch fellow enlistee, Howard Duff. Indeed, being the ingenious and resourceful non-Coms that they were, they are reported to have often substituted for each other on air. Apparently each had the other's air voice down so pat that they were indistiguishable from each other when they wanted--or needed--to be. Dedicated fans of AFRS' Mystery Playhouse have been tricked without knowing it, through the personae of Sgt. X, who, in reality was often Elliott Lewis subbing for his buddy, Duff.

Lewis' guest appearances on The Adventures of Sam Spade are some of the more memorable episodes of that series for the magical, on-air interplay between Lewis, Duff, and Lurene Tuttle.

In contrast to his extraordinary radio career, in which he worked either alone or in tandem with his first wife Cathy Lewis, and/or his second wife, Mary Jane Croft, his movie career, like those of most radio actors of the period, wasn't nearly as prolific, with only three films to his credit. His voice was also heard on Gordon Jenkins' classic recording of "Manhattan Tower" on Decca Records in 1945.

During the 1950s, he began to concentrate on writing, producing and directing in earnest. During that period, Lewis produced (1950-1956) and directed (1951-1954) CBS's long running, highly collectible Suspense program. He also produced and directed Broadway Is My Beat from 1949-1954. CBS Radio also tapped him to produce and direct Crime Classics from 1953 to 1954.

After the Golden Age of Radio effectively ended, Lewis moved to Television as a producer of such shows as The Lucille Ball Show (1962) and The Mothers-In-Law (1967), and directed all but one episode of the final season of Petticoat Junction (1963). But it was Radio that remained his first love and he continued to direct the occasional radio play well into the 1970s, culminating with Mutual's critically acclaimed Zero Hour (Hollywood Radio Theatre) in 1973, Sears Radio Theatre in 1979, and Mutual Radio Theatre in 1980 as both director and producer. These Golden Age Radio Revival dramas were some of the finest productions of the 1970s, and despite the dominance of Television, represented an enduring, sophisticated tribute to The Golden Age of Radio that Elliott Lewis had loved so very much.

CBS Radio Publicity once dubbed Elliott Lewis "Mr. Radio" because of his contributions to the medium as a writer, producer, director, and actor. Lewis was involved in more than 1,2o0 network radio programs in those various capacities.




Howard Green Duff
(
Capt. Philip Kearney)
(1913-1990)

Birthplace: Bremerton [Charleston], Washington, U.S.A.

Radiography:

1940 Big Town
1940 Everyman's Theatre
1941 Latitude Zero
1941 Gulf Screen Guild Theatre
1941 Romance Of the Ranchos
1942 The Pepsodent Show
1943 Major Bowes' Original Amateur Hour
1943 Wings To Victory
1943 The Westinghouse Program
1943 Duffy's Tavern
1943 Spotlight Bands
1943 The Telephone Hour
1943 The George Burns and Gracie Allen Show
1943 The Lone Ranger
1943 The Hour Of Charm
1943 Suspense
1943 Your Hit Parade
1943 The Lifebuoy Show
1943 Chesterfield Time
1943 Waltz Time
1944 Maxwell House Coffee Timie
1944 The Frank Morgan Show
1944 Texaco Star Theatre
1944 The Grand Ole Opry
1944 One Night Stand
1944 The Dinah Shore Program
1944 Sammy Kaye's Sunday Serenade
1944 The Cleveland Symphony
1944 The Raleigh Cigarette Program
1944 The Jack Benny Program
1944 The Carnation Contented Hour
1944 Inner Sanctum
1944 The Xavier Cugat Show
1944 Top Of the Evening
1944 The Raymond Scott Show
1944 The Amos 'n Andy Show
1944 The Westinghouse Program
1944 The Whistler
1944 The Pause That Refreshes...On the Air
1944 Columbia Presents Corwin
1944 Kay Kyser's Kollege Of Musical Knowledge
1944 The Charlie Ruggles Show
1944 The Voice Of Firestone
1944 Your All-Time Hit Parade
1944 Everything For the Boys
1944 The Jack Carson Show
1944 Molle Mystery Theatre
1944 Hollywood Mystery Time
1944 The Camel Comedy Caravan
1944 The Prudential Family Hour
1944 Saturday Night Serenade
1944 Tangee Varieties
1944 The Jackie Gleason-Les Tremayne Show
1944 The Kenny Baker Show
1944 The Charlie McCarthy Show
1944 The Dick Haymes Show
1944 The Adventures Of the Thin Man
1944 It Pays To Be Ignorant
1944 Birds Eye Open House
1944 Command Performance
1945 The Chesterfield Supper Club
1945 The Treasure Hour Of Song
1945 The Fred Waring Show
1945 The Great Gildersleeve
1945 Guy Lombardo and His Musical Autographs
1945 Kraft Music Hall
1945 Words At War
1945 The Jimmy Durante Show
1945 The Fitch Bandwagon
1945 An Evening With Romberg
1945 Arch Oboler's Plays
1945 Theatre Guild On the Air
1945 This Is My Best
1945 Hollywood Preview
1945 The Alan Young Show
1946 Marcus O'Connor, Detective First Class
1946 A Gathering In the Air
1946 Theatre Of Romance
1946 Cavalcade Of America
1946 The Cass Daley Show
1946 Suspense
1946 Lady Esther Screen Guild Theatre
1946 Dark Venture
1946 The Adventures Of Sam Spade
1946 Encore Theatre
1946 The Life Of Riley
1946 Favorite Story
1946 The Rudy Vallee Show
1947 Voyage Of the Scarlet Queen
1947 Mr President
1947 Philco Radio Time
1947 Mail Call
1948 Joan Davis Time
1948 The Amazing Mr Malone
1949 Fibber McGee and Molly
1949 Philip Morris Playhouse
1950 Sara's Private Caper
1950 The Miracle Of America
1950 Hedda Hopper's Hollywood
1951 Hollywood Star Playhouse
1951 The McCoy
1973 Hollywood Radio Theatre
1979 Sears Radio Theatre
Campbell Playhouse
The Chamber Music Society Of Lower Basin Street
Hollywood Calling
Yarns For Yanks
The Fanny Brice-Frank Morgan Show
Mr and Mrs North
Johnny Mercer's Music Shop
Front Line Theatre
This Is the story


Early Howard Duff fan card, ca. 1946
Early Howard Duff fan card, ca. 1946

Howard Duff, ca 1951
Howard Duff, ca 1951

Corporal Howard Duff with famed Lt Col. Tom Lewis, the man most instrumental in forming and promoting the Armed Forces Radio Service
Corporal Howard Duff with famed Lt Col. Tom Lewis, the man most instrumental in forming and promoting the Armed Forces Radio Service.

Film Corporal Howard Duff in impromptu script conference with his agent, Mark Hellinger, for Brute Force (1947). Duff was credited as 'Howard Duff, Radio's Sam Spade'
Film Corporal Howard Duff in impromptu script conference with his producer/mentor, Mark Hellinger and Yvonne DeCarlo, for Brute Force (1947). Duff was credited as 'Howard Duff, Radio's Sam Spade'

Howard Duff and Burt Lancaster in Brute Force (1947)
Howard Duff and Burt Lancaster in Brute Force (1947)

Howard Duff with his two mentors, Lurene Tuttle, left, and William Spier, center. ca. 1946
Howard Duff with his two mentors, Lurene Tuttle, left, and William Spier, center. ca. 1946

Lurene Tuttle and Howard Duff at the CBS Mike for Sam Spade, ca. 1947
Lurene Tuttle and Howard Duff at the CBS Mike for Sam Spade, ca. 1947

Effie and Sam, in character ca. 1948
Effie and Sam, in character
ca. 1948

Howard Duff as Sam Spade over NBC, ca. 1959
Howard Duff as Sam Spade over NBC, ca. 1949

Ida Lupino and Howard Duff in Woman In Hiding (1950)
Ida Lupino and Howard Duff in Woman In Hiding (1950)


Howard Duff and Ida Lupino, ca. 1952
Howard Duff and Ida Lupino, ca. 1952

Bridget Duff seems a bit put out during a photo opportunity on the set of Mr. Adams and Eve
Bridget Duff seems a bit put out during a photo opportunity on the set of Mr. Adams and Eve

Howard Duff and Ida Lupino introduce their daughter Bridget to lengendary Director Fritz Lang
Howard Duff and Ida Lupino introduce their daughter Bridget to lengendary Director Fritz Lang

In good company -- Left to right, George Sanders, Ed Sullivan, Ida Lupino, Richard Hearne, and Howard Duff, ca. 1957
In good company -- Left to right, George Sanders, Ed Sullivan, Ida Lupino, Richard Hearne, and Howard Duff, ca. 1957

Howard Duff and Ida Lupino in publicity still from their Television program Mr. Adams and Eve, ca. 1957
Howard Duff and Ida Lupino in publicity still from their Television program Mr. Adams and Eve, ca. 1957

Howard Duff, ca. 1965
Howard Duff, ca. 1965

"Goodnight, Sweetheart"
"Goodnight, Sweetheart"

Howard Green Duff was born in the former Charleston Township later incorporated into Bremerton, Washington. Both athletic and artistic as a child and young adult, Duff would entertain his school chums as much with his cartoons and caricatures as with his all-around athletic skills. But indeed his athletic career was fated to be cut short by a freak accident which shattered his leg, effectively ending a promising sports career. Duff had already dabbled in amateur Drama in high school and enjoyed the audience reactions so much that he began to consider a career in Entertainment in earnest.

Duff's artistic talent got him some work as a department store window dresser but he hated it. He got the chance to do some radio work at a small local station after he graduated from high school and jumped at it. He did a bit of announcing and spot commercials. While working at the radio station, he apprenticed with the Seattle Repertory Community Theatre Company, eventually graduating from the Seattle Repertory School. He then returned to radio in earnest but within four years Duff found himself drafted into the Army.

Duff's Army service saw him working as an announcer, reporter and journalist for the early Armed Forces Radio Service (AFRS), at first serving in the Marianas for six months, then returning stateside to work out of both the Gower Gulch and Santa Monica facilities of the Armed Forces Radio Service Information and Education Recording Center. It was there that he gained his first worldwide audience recording intros, bumpers, public service announcements and narrations for many of the AFRS' most popular and enduring programming. Duff worked on many of AFRS' most popular series destined for overseas audiences--Basin Street (The Chamber Music Society of Lower Basin Street) among them. Known as 'Sergeant X' to his far-flung Mystery Playhouse fans, Duff alternated with Peter Lorre and 'T4Y' to introduce Mystery Playhouse renditions of The Thin Man, Mr. and Mrs. North, The Hermit's Cave, Sherlock Holmes, Inner Sanctum, Charlie Chan, and the other popular mystery programs of the era to hundreds of thousands of American Expeditionary and United Nations Forces throughout the world. Pictured at left as a corporal, Duff was eventually honorably discharged as a Staff Sergeant.

Desperate for regular work after his discharge, Howard Duff lived a hand to mouth existence for several months, auditioning in vain for any number of Radio and Film opportunities, only to eventually become utterly frustrated in his efforts. It was in that frame of mind that he auditioned--along with a reported 100 or so other aspiring young actors--for Director William Spier's new Dashiell Hammett project, tentatively titled, "Sam Spade, Detective." In Duff's frame of mind his delivery for the audition was almost flippant. Duff admittedly didn't give the tryout any serious interest, but at the end of the day, it was that very casual, flip delivery that caught Spier's attention. Spier reportedly continued to audition for the role of Sam Spade, but couldn't shake his impression of Duff's delivery. Spier ultimately went with his instincts and gave Howard Duff the nod to appear with 'Radio's First Lady' Lurene Tuttle as Detective Sam Spade and his long-suffering secretary Effie Perrine in "The Adventures of Sam Spade, Detective."

Within literally weeks of airing the Sam Spade series, Howard Duff was creating a buzz across America. The on-air chemistry between novice Duff and Radio pro Tuttle was the height of Golden Age Radio magic and quite literally propelled the duo to some of the best early audience numbers in Radio history.

More importantly for Duff, Radio's 'Sam Spade' caught the attention of legendary former media critic and Film Noir producer Mark Hellinger. Within six months of airing The Adventures of Sam Spade, Detective, Hellinger signed Duff to a personal services contract for Hellinger's Film projects. Hellinger had worked for both Warner Bros. and 20th Century Fox, but it was his Universal Pictures projects that got him most interested in Duff's raw, natural charisma. Duff's collaboration with Helllinger would see Duff appear in two of Hellinger's Jules Dassin-directed Film Noir classics, Brute Force (1947) and Naked City (1948). Duff's broad appeal to film audiences in Naked City put his Film career into overdrive. Tragically, his driven, charismatic mentor, Mark Hellinger, died suddenly in 1947 of a heart attack at the age of 44.

Thus thrust into the spotlight but with his strongest backer prematurely deceased, Duff responded by redoubling his efforts to learn even more about his craft and his profession. He couldn't have been in better hands. By simply continuing to appear as Sam Spade he was working with two of Radio's most legendary talents--William Spier and Lurene Tuttle. Performing in both an Acting Lab under the tutelage [or should that be 'Tuttle-age'] of Lurene Tuttle and Directing Lab under the mentorship of William Spier, Duff continued to observe, learn and implement the lessons of two of Radio's greatest mentors with every succeeding broadcast of 'Sam Spade'.

That's not to say that the bewildering array of Radio appearances he'd already compiled by the late 1940s weren't helping as well. Duff's Radiography for the year 1944 alone had him appearing in some fifty other concurrent Radio productions besides his own Adventures of Sam Spade. Indeed it was the extraordinary reception of his Sam Spade characterization that had both Duff and Tuttle appearing on some forty other programs in character as Sam Spade and Effie Perrine. America, it seems, simply couldn't get enough of the chemistry between Sam Spade and the naive, lovable, ditzy Effie.

The notoriety of his early successes in both Radio and Film found him dating the likes of Yvonne DeCarlo, Ava Gardner, and eventually Film Noir actress and director Ida Lupino. As Duff's star continued to rise, so did his Film, Radio and Television opportunities. Clearly already typecast for a succession of Film Noir projects over the following ten years, Duff was characteristically laid back and pragmatic about the very Sam Spade role that got him there.

Duff's personal and professional appeal came so apparently effortlessly that one gets the impression that Radio, Film and Television history tend to take Duff's natural talent for granted. But then that's precisely how the entertainment world viewed Lurene Tuttle's talent as well. Not to elevate Howard Duff's achievements in Radio to the level of Lurene Tuttle's, but there's much they shared in common. And to her great credit, Lurene Tuttle is arguably most responsible for the oversight of recognition to both her career and Duff's as well.

Radio 'magic' is a far different intangible than screen magic or screen chemistry. On-screen chemistry has many objective and subjective, elements at play. But Radio magic, by contrast limited as it is by its aural dimension, is so much harder to pin down. When it comes off--consistently--there's simply no other way to describe it. It's not simply personal chemistry, since the very purpose of radio dramatization is to evoke a very personal experience in what amounts to a universal audience. It's far beyond that. And it's that very elusiveness that makes Radio magic so much harder to analyze or dissect. The universal appeal of the Duff/Tuttle years of Sam Spade over Radio are simply enigmatic. There's no other rational way to describe them. But there's no escaping the fact that that elusive quality of the Sam Spade chemistry owes itself to Howard Duff and Lurene Tuttle's very special brand of emotional spontaneity, transparency, integrity and craftsmanship in both their roles.

That dramatic crucible paved Duff's way throughout the remainder of his amazing Radio career, a Television career spanning some 300+ appearances over 45 years, and a Film career spanning some twenty feature films. It's no wonder that he ultimately attracted the attention and affection of famed Film Noir actress, producer and director, Ida Lupino. Together the couple built on the independent production company Ms. Lupino had formed with her second husband, Collier Young. With The Filmakers and their later Bridget Productions the couple set about producing, directing, and occasionally starring in their own Television and Film projects.

Duff's own indefatigable self-confidence helped him endure any number of life circumstances that would have thrown most other people into a series of bouts of depression. Duff seems to have simply had that gift of being able to move on, no matter what was thrown into his path. The premature cancellation of what--at the time--was Radio's 2nd or 3rd highest rated program was a perfect example. Spun a bewildering number of ways ranging from accounts of a fall Duff had endured, re-breaking the leg that had cut his sports career short to a protracted dispute between Warner Bros. and NBC over the rights to the Sam Spade character--and everything in between.

In reality, Duff had simply been yet another victim of the fascist witch hunts of the mid-1940s to mid-1950s HUAC hearings and their lying, manipulative minions. Duff's offense? Being seen at a political rally for the 'wrong' candidate. That was the beginning and end of his short-lived blacklisting. That's all it took during that cowardly, black era in our cultural history. Indeed, the hysteria also eventually caught up with Dashiell Hammett himself. Apart from the apparently indisputable income tax problems he'd brought on himself, Hammett was yet another patriotic, outspoken, veteran of two World Wars to be deemed a 'commie sympathizer' for either appearing at the wrong political rally, or simply refusing to rat out his friends.

Indeed, to this very day--as inexplicable and indefensible as the phenomenon remains--Right Wing Conservative chicken hawks with no military service whatsoever in their own background, continue to demean and distort the military experience of anyone who has put their own life on the line for their country--if that veteran supports the wrong candidate or cause. So what's changed in fifty years? Basically nothing, other than the abolishment of the very Fairness Doctrine that tended to even the playing field in the face of whispering campaigns and distortions.

Duff moved on. Hammett, not so much. Duff's success with Ida Lupino--at least professionally--also produced a lovely daughter, Bridget (after whom they named their second production company). Duff and Lupino eventually divorced resolutely after eighteen years of marriage and another fifteen years of separation. Duff remarried and Ida Lupino remained single until her death in 1995.

Howard Duff continued to almost effortlessly appear in an extraordinary variety of dramatic and comedic productions over the years. Most notably with his own Television program, Mr. Adams and Eve (1957), inspired by Duff and Lupino's own domestic life together, and culminating in Duff's memorable appearance as the pragmatic, almost cold-bloodedly matter of fact divorce lawyer in the Oscar-winning Dustin Hoffman vehicle Kramer Vs. Kramer (1979).

Duff starred in five other Television programs of his own over the years, was in equal demand as a guest star as simply himself and ultimately endeared himself to several new generations of Television and Radio fans as more and more of his body of work enters circulation for the first time.

The mellow register of Howard Duff's voice seems to so inexplicably touch the soul of anyone who hears it. Call it a gift, universal appeal, call him 'a natural', call it whatever . . . Whatever that elusive quality was, you can still hear it in every word this remarkable man uttered over an amazing 55 year, multi-media career. He delivered. And he continues to deliver. And despite an amazing career that quite rightfully eclipsed his four and a half years as Sam Spade, it's as Sam Spade that the vast majority of us continue to love him and hang on his every word. It that fair? Perhaps not. I sense that Howard Duff, wherever he is at the moment would view this assessment as pragmatically as he viewed the rest of his storied life. If it works for us, it works for him. Simple, straightforward, matter of fact.

Goodnight, Sam . . .




Home >> D D Too Home >> Radio Logs >> The Voyage of The Scarlet Queen